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WashingtonVotes NEWS: Wednesday, June 21, 2017.
Legislature adjourns Second Special Session, moves to Third Special Session as government shut-down approaches

In a kind of legislative “solstice,” Wednesday was the last day of Washington’s Second Special Session and the first day of the Third Special Session, as lawmakers quietly adjourned “Sine Die” and immediately moved to the next session. They now have nine days to finalize a budget agreement to avert a potential state government shutdown on June 30th, when the current 2015-17 budget period ends.

Most legislators stayed in their home districts for much of the Second Special Session, which began May 24th, while House and Senate leaders from both parties met to work out a budget agreement for the 2017-19 biennium, including a plan to fund state basic education. While the budget negotiators, along with the governor, have repeatedly signaled that they were getting closer, no agreement has been reached to date.

Members of both chambers met briefly for floor action during the session, in the House on May 25th, and in the Senate on June 13th, to vote on bills that had passed during the Regular and First Special Sessions.

The House also seated a new member, Representative Javier Valdez for North Seattle’s 46th Legislative District. Rep. Javier replaced Rep. Jessyn Farrell (D-Seattle) who resigned her seat to focus on her campaign for Seattle mayor. Rep. Valdez is a long time local Democratic Party leader and has worked for the City of Seattle for more than 20 years, most recently as an aide to Mayor Ed Murray.

The state Office of Financial Management released the latest revenue forecast yesterday, showing that projected tax collections have risen by some $159 million—a $79 million increase for the current 2015-17 fiscal period and $80 million for the 2017-19 biennium. State tax collections are at record levels. This means lawmakers will have almost $41 billion to work with, an almost 7 percent increase over 2015-17, as they continue to negotiate a budget agreement for 2017-19 spending.

Most viewed bills

2017 Senate Bill 5009
Concerning offenses involving economic disruption

  2017 Senate Bill 5008
Facilitating compliance with the federal REAL ID act by modifying driver's license and identicard design and fees

  2017 House Joint Memorial 4000
Petitioning for the creation of a new state in eastern Washington

  2017 House Bill 1000
Concerning the use of deadly force by law enforcement and corrections officers



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