Wrapup on the Legislature
RICHLAND, Wash.- A three-and-a-half month legislative session concluded Sunday night with lawmakers bringing millions of dollars to the area, but it's not all smiles in Olympia.
KNDU spoke with local legislators Monday who gave mixed reviews of this year's session, most of the things they wanted to get done made it through, but even with last minute wrangling late into Sunday night, some of the important bills didn't make it through.
A 105-day session revealed two key issues for the basin, tourism and transportation, but not everything came through.
On the way to the governor, $6.4 million for projects around the Columbia Basin. $3 million for the Hanford Reach Center, about $400,000 for a pedestrian overpass in Pasco and $1 million for an overpass to ease congestion at Highway-12 and A-street.
A controversial bill on domestic partnerships caught everyone's eye.
The governor's signed the bill giving elderly and same-sex couples some of the rights of marriage.
It allows unmarried couples rights like inheritance and some hospital rights, much to the dismay of opponents who argue it erodes traditional marriage.
Also controversial, a bill requiring public schools who teach sex-ed to teach contraception, and a new law clarifying legal amounts of medical marijuana, all on the way to the governor for final approval.
A push for a state income tax failed this time around, as did stricter laws on gun shows and a bill that would have allowed people to bring their dogs with them to the bar.