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Tag: Pam Roach


Productive, bipartisan, ‘kum ba yah’ Senate?

UPDATED 12:30 p.m.

Leaders of the newly Republican-dominated Senate are crowing about setting a more productive pace and working with the opposition.

The GOP-plus-two-Democrats coalition released figures showing the Senate has passed 276 bills so far. “It’s the most bills that have ever come out of the Senate in the last four years,”  Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom, one of those two breakaway Democrats, told me a few minutes after the deadline passed Wednesday to send Senate bills over to the House.

Thirty-two percent of them, 89 bills, were introduced by Democrats, according to the tally. ” That’s more bills than any

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Vote on NRA gun safety program becomes soapbox for some Senate Democrats

Eight Democratic members of the state Senate voted no Friday on a proclamation to encourage use of the National Rifle Association’s gun safety curriculum in schools, seizing the opportunity to decry how little attention gun-control bills have received in the Senate this year.

Senate Joint Memorial 8006, introduced by Sen. Maralyn Chase, D-Shoreline, would have no practical effect, but would indicate support for the use of the NRA’s Eddie Eagle gun safety program in schools and preschools. The NRA program tells children who find guns: “Stop. Don’t touch. Leave the area. Tell an adult.”

Sen. Dave Frockt, D-Seattle, said

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Legislature considers letting county councils suspend future Dale Washams

County commissioners and county councils can suspend a county treasurer who is accused of misconduct. But they can’t suspend an assessor-treasurer, which is the name of the dual job in Pierce County.

That nuance in state law has come under question after Dale Washam’s four-year reign at the assessor-treasurer’s office.

Sen. Mike Carrell and a bipartisan group of fellow Pierce senators — Jeannie Darneille, Bruce Dammeier, Steve Conway and Randi Becker – want to sync up the suspension authority for elected treasurers and assessor-treasurers. Their proposal, if it had been law, would presumably have allowed Pierce County Council to do something akin to impeaching Washam.


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Case closed on allegations against Sen. Pam Roach

An investigation into alleged violations of the state Senate’s respectful-workplace rules by Sen. Pam Roach has been closed with no discipline for the Auburn Republican. Also ended is a probe that aimed to figure out who leaked documents from the case to the press.

The Senate Facilities and Operations Committee took those actions today behind closed doors, then allowed reporters to return to the meeting room to announce the two unanimous votes. Finally, and in public, the committee voted unanimously to make public the leaked draft report and a final version of the same report.

The Republican-led committee had previously barred

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Sen. Bailey says her proposed constitutional amendment would protect referendum rights

State Sen. Barbara Bailey is pushing a constitutional amendment that she says will help protect voters’ right to challenge lawmakers’ decisions through referendum petitions.

The Republican from Oak Harbor has been trying since 2009 to curb the use of emergency clauses —special language that enables a law to be immediately passed when the governor signs it — with no success.

Bailey argues that emergency clauses take away voters’ opportunity to challenge laws by gathering signatures and submitting referendum petitions. That’s because an emergency clause eliminates the 90-day waiting period before a law goes into effect.

While Bailey’s past proposals to address emergency clauses failed to receive hearings in the state House of Representatives, this year her idea has gained a little more traction. Bailey’s proposed constitutional amendment, Senate Joint Resolution 8206, had a hearing today before the Senate Governmental Operations Committee.

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Democrats decry leak investigation

A debate over personnel discipline and transparency in the state Senate came to a head on the Senate floor this morning.

It appeared in the form of an arcane-seeming dispute over how many members a little-noticed committee on Senate personnel matters should have and who should chair it. Republicans and their two Democratic allies this morning turned aside proposed changes by minority Democrats that would have deposed GOP Sen.  Don Benton as chairman of the Facilities and Operations (F&O) Committee.

A week and a half after the Senate’s transfer of power, Democrats are complaining about how that committee is

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Senate committees get new leaders, including Pam Roach, Randi Becker, Mike Carrell

The political earthquake today that gives control of the state Senate to Republicans and two Democrats will reshuffle the leadership roster.

The coalition announced they would put Republicans in charge of some of the most important committees, including budget-writing Ways and Means (Andy Hill of Redmond instead of the Democrats’ pick, Jim Hargrove of Hoquiam), Education (Steve Litzow of Mercer Island replacing Rosemary McAuliffe of Bothell), Commerce and Labor (Janea Holmquist Newbry of Moses Lake taking over from Jeanne Kohl-Welles of Seattle) and the judiciary or justice committee (Mike Padden of Spokane Valley replacing Adam Kline of Seattle).

Randi Becker of Eatonville,

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State Senate settles with Pam Roach’s accuser, Mike Hoover

State Senate leaders today announced they have reached a settlement that resolves an employee’s complaint and “re-affirms” the Senate’s 2010 sanctions against Auburn Sen. Pam Roach.

Senate Secretary Tom Hoemann said the Senate sanctions were never dropped, even after Republicans allowed Roach to return to their private caucus meetings last winter around the same time they needed her for a key budget vote. Hoemann said Roach continues to be prohibited from communicating directly with GOP caucus staff and most nonpartisan committee staff.

Nevertheless, her return to the caucus prompted Senate GOP attorney Mike Hoover to demand $1.75 million in a claim

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