Washington State Legislature | KUOW News and Information

Washington State Legislature

Intelligence experts say North Korea is several years or more away from having the capability to threaten the U.S. West Coast with a nuclear missile. But recent sabre rattling was enough to make Washington state senators hold a hearing Wednesday about preparedness.

Several media outlets, including public radio, have filed an open records lawsuit against the Washington Legislature. The lawsuit filed Tuesday seeks access to lawmaker emails, text messages and calendars.

The threat of a nuclear attack, immigration enforcement and paying by the mile to drive are all on the agenda as Washington lawmakers hold meetings the week of September 11.

In the event of a nuclear strike there are state laws that literally ban Washington state officials from doing a part of their job.

Gray wolf
Flickr Photo/USFWS Pacific Region (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Bill Radke talks to Lynda Mapes, Seattle Times environment reporter, about Robert Wielgus, the Washington State University researcher whose work on cougars and wolves in Washington state angered lawmakers and ranchers and led to a loss of funding for his research and a lack of support from his employer.

Time is running out for Washington lawmakers to pass a capital construction budget. Less than one week remains in the state’s third overtime session of the legislature.

Heavily armed police officers found no evidence Wednesday morning of an active shooter on the Washington State Capitol Campus following a report of suspicious noises that sounded like gunshots. 

The entire campus in Olympia was put on lockdown at approximately 9:30 a.m. while officers armed with rifles searched a pair of buildings on the east campus that house the Washington Department of Natural Resources, Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Department of Social and Health Services.

In a move certain to anger Republicans, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on Friday vetoed a tax break for manufacturers that lawmakers passed last week as part of a budget deal to avoid a July 1 government shutdown.

KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

State lawmakers avoid a government shutdown with a last-minute budget deal that adds billions to public education. Is it good enough for the state Supreme Court?

The Ballard Locks turn 100. We'll take up the good and the bad of a project that transformed Seattle.

Americans shot fireworks, and North Korea launched an intercontinental ballistic missile. Some experts say it could hit Alaska -- could it ever hit us?

And a Seattle driver beats a speeding ticket by convincing a judge that a traffic sign is too wordy.

Summer Stinson, lawyer and Vice President of Washington's Paramount Duty and Daniel Zavala, director of policy and government relations with the League of Education Voters.
KUOW Photo/ Megan Farmer

Bill Radke talks to Summer Stinson, lawyer and vice president of  the parent group Washington's Paramount Duty, and Daniel Zavala, director of policy and government relations with the League of Education Voters, about the end of the latest legislative session and how much closer lawmakers got to fully funding basic education. 

If you have a reservation at a Washington state park this weekend or you rely on state services, you can breathe a sigh of relief. Washington lawmakers have passed a nearly $44 billion, two-year budget, averting an imminent government shutdown.

KUOW PHOTO/MEGAN FARMER

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray makes it official: He won't run as a write-in for a second term, and wants you to vote for former U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan instead.

Flickr Photo/Tony Swartz (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Bill Radke talks to Joseph O'Sullivan, Seattle Times Olympia reporter, about the latest information on the state budget deal that Republicans and Democrats reached on Wednesday. 

The Washington state Capitol in Olympia.
Flickr Photo/amishrobot (CC-BY-NC-ND)/https://flic.kr/p/4PxvK4

Bill Radke talks to Olympia correspondent Austin Jenkins about the budget deal reached by lawmakers just in time to avoid a partial government shutdown. 

Washington lawmakers have reached agreement on a budget just in time to avert a government shutdown. The deal was announced Wednesday morning, but details have yet to be released.

There’s still no word of a budget deal in the Washington state Capitol. And a partial government shutdown is just days away. Yet lawmakers remain optimistic.

It’s do-or-die week in Olympia. If lawmakers don’t pass a budget and send it to the governor for his signature before midnight on Friday, state government will go into partial shutdown.

Washington lawmakers are optimistic that won’t happen.

If Washington lawmakers don’t pass a state budget by June 30, the state will go into a partial government shutdown. And the impacts would be significant.

So what would that look like?

The state of Washington is 10 days from a government shutdown as lawmakers head into a third overtime session with still no budget deal.

Online retailer eBay wants to stop an internet tax proposal in the Washington Legislature. To do that the company is rallying its customer base.

State Rep. Javier Valdez is sworn in by Judge Dean Lum
King County Photo

King County Council has appointed Democrat Javier Valdez from Northeast Seattle as the new Washington state representative for the 46th District. He'll immediately replace Jessyn Farrell who stepped down in May to run for Seattle Mayor.


Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is sounding the alarm over the pace of budget negotiations at the state Capitol. During a media availability Monday, the Democrat said that it’s time for both sides to make “major moves” toward compromise.

There are just 10 days left in Washington’s second legislative overtime session. And still there’s no sign of a budget deal.

Washington state Rep. Judy Warnick applauds after the capital budget is adopted as the last bill of the 2013 session
Flickr Photo/Washington State House Republicans (CC BY ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/eZUQFW

Debate: How should we fund education?

Jun 7, 2017

Bill Radke talks with Northwest News Network's Austin Jenkins about why lawmakers in Olympia need to agree on education funding before they can agree on a budget.

We also hear from Liv Finne and Misha Werschkul about the two plans the state Legislature is considering to fund education. Finne is director of Center for Education at the Washington Policy Center and Werschkul is executive director of the Washington State Budget and Policy Center.

It’s only June in an off-election year, but yard signs are up and candidates are knocking on doors in Washington’s 45th legislative district. It’s just one race, but the outcome could decide who controls the Washington state Senate.

Jeannie Yandel talks with Everett Herald reporter Jerry Cornfield about the latest news from the Washington State Legislature.

Washington’s 30-day special session of the legislature ends Tuesday. But there’s still no sign of a budget deal or a plan to fully fund education. That means Gov. Jay Inslee is expected to call a second overtime session.

The majority of Washingtonians with a regular driver's license will have an interesting choice to make the next time they renew—a choice possibly coming to Oregon too. Continue with the same old license they have grown accustomed to or apply for a so-called "enhanced driver license."

Monday marks the start of candidate filing week in Washington state. It’s the week when people running for public office must file with the secretary of state’s office. But one political contest is already underway in a big way.

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