The third week of the legislative session included early floor action to address basic education issues, committee hearings involving property crimes, and bill proposals to change Washington’s public records laws. The state Senate also experienced some changes to its membership with two appointments to positions within the new presidential administration. Sen. Brian Dansel, R-7, resigned his seat immediately thereby creating a virtual tie in the state Senate (24 Republicans; 24 Democrats).
Litigation Section-supported bill heard in the House
Rep. Paul Graves, R-5 introduced House Bill 1378 that was heard in the House Judiciary Committee on Jan. 24. If passed, HB 1378 would replace all references to a motion and affidavit of prejudice with a notification of disqualification. The WSBA Litigation Section supports this proposal as well as the Washington Defenders Association and the Washington Association for Justice.
Bar-request bill voted out of committee
SB 5011, as requested by WSBA, was voted out of the Senate Law and Justice Committee on Jan. 25. Originating from the Corporate Act Revisions Committee of WSBA’s Business Law Section, this bill seeks to modernize Washington’s Corporate Act (RCW 23B) by allowing forum selection, eliminating the 10-year limit on voting trusts, and other technical changes to make Washington more business friendly.
SB 5011 was voted out of committee unanimously and delivered to the Senate Rules Committee for further action.
Guardianship bill heard in the House
HB 1402, prime sponsored by Rep. Laurie Jinkins, D-27, was heard in the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, Jan. 26. This bill relates to the visitation of incapacitated persons, communication surrounding vulnerable adults, and targeted training for legal professionals and long-term care providers. WSBA’s Elder Law Section supports HB 1402 and is working with Rep. Jinkins on amendment language to ensure consistency with current state law.
For additional legislative information, please visit WSBA Legislative Affairs.