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Tag: Debbie Regala


Sen. Mike Carrell dead at 69

Senate Republican Leader Mark Schoesler, R-Ritzville, has confirmed news that Sen. Mike Carrell died this morning. The Lakewood Republican was 69.

In a statement, the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus said Carrell was surrounded by family and friends at the University of Washington Medical Center when he died at 10:35 a.m. of lung complications stemming from medical treatment.

Earlier this year, Carrell entered into treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome or MDS, a pre-cancer condition often leading to leukemia. He received a bone-marrow transplant from his brother last month.

Friends who were helping raise money to pay for his treatment posted on their

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Former U.S. Rep. Norm Dicks, state Sen. Debbie Regala will receive honorary degrees from Puget Sound

The University of Puget Sound announced today the recipients of honorary Doctor of Laws degrees at next month’s commencement ceremony. UPS President Ronald Thomas will present the honorary degrees to 18-term U.S. Rep. Norm Dicks and Debbie Regala who served as a member of the Metro Parks board, the state House and the state Senate.

Regala is also a graduate of UPS, receiving a degree with the Class of 1968.

Both retired from office at the end of 2012.

“Congressman Dicks and Sen. Regala exemplify the principles of informed and engaged citizenship so central to our educational mission at Puget

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Lawmakers say their goodbyes

It’s not out of the question that lawmakers will have to return this year. A bad revenue forecast this summer or fall could easily wipe out the 1 percent reserve of $319 million that lawmakers left in their budget as a cushion.

But barring that, this morning’s adjournment after an all-nighter was the last hurrah for several long-serving members of the Legislature, including Debbie Regala of Tacoma, Jim Kastama of Puyallup, Mark Miloscia of Federal Way, Margarita Prentice of Renton and Glenn Anderson of Fall City. Kastama, Miloscia and Anderson are running for statewide office.

Others leaving include Jim McCune of Graham

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Sen. Debbie Regala takes up death-penalty abolition

In recent years, Sen. Ed Murray has repeatedly taken the lead in the Legislature in trying to abolish the death penalty. This year, the Ways and Means chairman and gay-rights advocate is a little busy trying to write a state budget and legalize same-sex marriage.

Taking over this perennial heavy lift is Tacoma Sen. Debbie Regala.

The Democrat is working with the American Civil Liberties Union and a coalition of groups that opposes the death penalty and is coming to Olympia Wednesday to lobby lawmakers to abolish capital punishment and to speak at a public hearing

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Regala: Special session was ‘pre-paid’

Sen. Debbie Regala penned an interesting blog post this week defending lawmakers’ special session to deal with the budget.

The Democrat from Tacoma notes that the cost of the 30-day overtime period comes out of the Legislature’s budget. Lawmakers don’t appropriate extra money to pay for it. She says that means “tax payers contribute no more than they already do,” because the Legislature makes do with less the rest of the year.

The cost of special sessions over the past 25 years has not required any additional tax payer dollars. Both the House and Senate absorb the cost of special

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Gregoire, lawmakers headed toward balancing welfare budget

It looks like Washington’s governor will continue to take the lead in managing the way money is spent on welfare, although lawmakers may be taking a greater role in the process.

Gov. Chris Gregoire and the Legislature’s budget writers met Thursday and are close to agreement on how to balance the remaining shortfall in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, the federal-state welfare program.

It’s largely removed from the discussion of the shortfall in the general-fund budget, but the state has been tackling a separate shortfall in the programs connected to welfare. They were due to spend roughly $2 billion in the next two-year period, which had to be cut down by about one-fifth.

Gregoire did that mostly by placing a five-year lifetime limit on welfare payouts and cutting cash payments — to $478 for a three-person family down from $562, for example. Many Democrats in the Legislature didn’t like her cuts, which fueled an effort to take over control of the welfare budget.

That seems to be over now. The Senate unanimously passed, and the House appears poised to accept at least in part, a bill by Sen. Debbie Regala of Tacoma that would make some reforms right away and appoint a legislative-executive task force to study others.

The deal doesn’t overturn the governor’s cuts, nor does it take her authority away.

“This has historically been a very contentious issue between the Legislature and the governor’s office, and I feel we have really crossed a major threshold,” said Rep. Ruth Kagi, D-Lake Forest Park. Read more »


Sen. Debbie Regala will retire at end of term

Tacoma will elect a new state senator next year. Debbie Regala won’t run for another four-year term in 2012, she told me today on her 66th birthday.

It’s no surprise to her fellow legislators, whom she has told for some time she doesn’t plan to run again. After 17 years in the House and Senate, Regala said she will be ready to retire after another year.

The Democrat wants to spend more time with her 95-year-old mother, she said.

“I’m very proud of the whole variety of things I’ve done,” Regala said. That includes helping write the 1999 Forest and

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Sen. Regala out on health-related absence, says she’s OK

An illness kept Sen. Debbie Regala away from Olympia Wednesday and today, but the state senator said today by phone from Tacoma General Hospital that she is doing fine.

Regala, D-Tacoma, was hospitalized Tuesday evening and said she expects to go home as soon as tonight. She could be back at the Legislature as early as Friday.

She preferred to keep the specifics of her illness private but said that “everything’s OK” after receiving medical care.

UPDATE 4:53 p.m.: Regala said she’s back home and will be in Olympia in the morning.