State Employee Grant Program

WSAB State Legislative Bill/Issue Tracking Report


63rd Washington State Legislature, Second Regular Session
Bill Status as of: March 14, 2014 - End of 2014 Regular Session 

WSAB has represented Washington’s radio and television stations in the State Legislature since 1935. Each year, WSAB protects and promotes the interests of broadcasters on a variety of bills and issues.

Symbol Key:
HB/SB: 
Original (House/Senate) Bill
SHB/SSB: 
Substitute (House/Senate) Bill - Amendments were added by the committee and compiled into a Substitute Bill.
EHB/ESB: 
Engrossed (House/Senate) Bill - Amendments were added during consideration of the bill by the full House or Senate and consolidated before final passage into a new bill.

Cut-Off Dates:  The Legislature establishes "cut-off" dates to gauge the performance of bills.  A bill must meet a particular progress benchmark by each cut-off or it may no longer be considered and is deemed "dead" for the session.  Bills necessary to implement the budget are exempt from "cut-off" deadlines.  The NEXT Cut-Off Date of the 2014 Session is FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 28TH.  That is the last day for Senate Committees to consider House Bills and House Committees to consider Senate Bills.

ADVERTISING

NEWS GATHERING & REPORTING

TAXES

MISCELLANEOUS


Bills that passed during the 2013 Legislative Session
have been removed from the Tracking Report.

ADVERTISING

HB 1066:  Advertised Selling Price of Alcohol.  This bill would require the advertised selling price for alcohol to include the taxes imposed by state law.  2013 STATUS:  In House Government Oversight & Accountability Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Government Oversight & Accountability Committee.

HB 2233:  Medical Use of Cannabis. Among other things, this bill would prohibit the advertising of “cannabis for sale to the general public in any manner that promotes or tends to promote the abuse of cannabis.”  2014 STATUS:  In House Health Care & Wellness Committee.

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NEWS GATHERING & REPORTING

OPEN RECORDS ACCESS

HB 1019:  Open Records Identification of Requestor.  This bill would permit government agencies to require a person making a public records request to identify themselves or the identity of the person on whose behalf the request is made.  2013 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.

SHB 1037:  Cost Recovery Mechanism for Public Records Sought for Commercial Purposes.  This bill would permit a government agency to charge a fee to a requestor to requests a public record for sale or resale or obtaining names and addresses for the purpose of solicitation.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House Government Operations & Elections Committee; referred to House Appropriations Committee.  2014 STATUS:  Passed House Appropriations Committee; in House Rules Committee.

SHB 1128:  Public Records Request Response.  This bill would add many provisions to the Open Records Act designed to make it easier for a local government agency to limit its response to requests for public records.  The substitute bill prohibits an agency from seeking an injunction against a news organization for inspection and copying of any public record.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House Local Government Committee; in House Rules Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Rules Committee.

SHB 1198:  Public Records Training for Public Officials.  This bill would require members of the governing body of a government agency and all state and local elected officials to complete a training course on the Open Public Records Act.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House Government Operations & Elections Committee; referred to House Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government. 2014 STATUS:  In House Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government.

SHB 2121/ESB 5964:  Training Public Officials Regarding Open Records & Open Meetings.  This bill would require every member of the governing body of a public agency to complete training on the law of open meetings and open records; and, the training must be retaken at least every four years.  2014 STATUS:  SHB 2121 in House Rules Committee. SSB 5964 passed Senate; passed House; delivered to Governor.

SSB 5169/SHB 1298:  Implementing Recommendations of the Sunshine Committee.  These two bills would permit public inspection and copying of applications of finalists for the highest management position in a public agency with confidential reference information removed after the finalists are selected.  2013 STATUS:  SSB 5169 in Senate Rules Committee.  SHB 1298 passed House; did not pass Senate; returned to House Rules Committee at end of 2013 Regular Session.  2014 STATUS:  SSB 5169 in Senate Rules Committee.  SHB 1298 in House Rules.

SHB 1418:  Hours of Availability for Inspection & Copying of Public Records.  This bill would exempt cities, towns and special districts that do not maintain office hours for a minimum of 30 hours per week from having to meet that minimum open office requirement, but must post on the agency web site directions on how to contact agency personnel to inspect or copy records.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House; did not pass Senate; returned to House Rules Committee at end of 2013 Regular Session.  2014 STATUS:  In House Rules Committee.

2SHB 1651:  Access to Juvenile Records.  This bill would make the official juvenile court file of any alleged or proven juvenile offender confidential unless the juvenile has been adjudicated of a sex offense or a serious violent offense, in which case the entire file is open to the public.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House; did not pass Senate; returned to House Rules Committee at end of 2013 Regular Session.  2014 STATUS:  Passed House; passed Senate; delivered to Governor.

HB 1763:  Hours of Availability for Inspection & Copying of Public Records.  This bill is narrower than HB 1418 in that it applies only to special purpose districts and requires only that the agency post on its web site instructions concerning contacting personnel to inspect or copy public records.  2013 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.

2SSB 5689:  Access to Juvenile Records.  This bill started out identical to HB 1651 above, but the Senate Human Services & Corrections Committee changed the bill to include a long list of the kinds of non-adjudication and non-conviction juvenile court records that are confidential.  2013 STATUS:  In Senate Rules Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In Senate Rules Committee.

SHB 1697:  Exempting Records of Solid Waste Collection Companies.  This bill would exempt from public inspection and copying records of solid waste collection companies that contain “valuable” information such as trade secrets or financial information held by a government agency.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House Government Operations & Elections Committee; in House Rules Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Rules Committee.

HB 2114/SB 6007: Public Records Exemption for Public Utility Customer Information.  This bill would expand the exemption from public disclosure and copying information that public utilities keep on customers to include electronic contact information and customer-specific usage and billing information.  2014 STATUS:  HB 2114 in House Rules Committee. SSB 6007 passed Senate; passed House; delivered to Governor.

SB 6059:  Charges for Scanning Public Records.  This bill would regulate the amount that a government agency may charge for scanning public records.  2014 STATUS:  In Senate Rules Committee.

SHB 2578/SB 6454:  Exempting from Public Disclosure Public Works Proposals & Documents.  These two identical bills would exempt from public disclosure and copying proposals submitted in response to a competitive solicitation. Such documents would be subject to disclosure after the public agency announces that a contract agreement has been executed or the selection process has ended.  2014 STATUS:  SHB 2578 in House Rules Committee. SSB 6454 in Senate Rules Committee.

SHB 2724:  Exempting Information Containing Archaeological Resources and Traditional Cultural Places from Public Disclosure.  This bill would exempt from public disclosure archaeological or cultural place information obtained by a government agency or tribal government under a data sharing agreement with the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation.  2014 STATUS:  Passed House; passed Senate; delivered to Governor.

SB 6460: Exempting Names & E-Mail Addresses of Persons on Public Agency E-mail Distribution Lists.  This bill would exempt from public disclosure the names and e-mail addresses of persons on public agency e-mail distribution lists.  2014 STATUS:  In Senate Governmental Operations Committee.

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NEWS GATHERING & REPORTING

OPEN MEETINGS

HB 1197:  Open Meetings – Public Comment/Identification.  This bill would require government agency governing bodies to take public comment at an open meeting before taking final action on a rule, regulation, ordinance or other action.  It permits the agency to require a commenter to provide his or her name and address in order to be allowed to comment.  2013 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.

HB 1714:  Public Meetings Executive Session.  This bill permits agency governing bodies to record executive sessions, which recordings are exempt from public inspection and copying unless disclosure is specifically authorized by the agency.  2013 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.

HB 2105: Public Meeting Agenda Online.  This bill would require public agencies with governing bodies to post the agenda of each regular meeting on its web site no later than 24 hours prior to start of the meeting.  2014 STATUS:  Passed House; passed Senate; delivered to Governor.

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NEWS GATHERING & REPORTING

MISCELLANEOUS

HB 2178:  Drones.  This bill would prohibit the operation in Washington state airspace an unmanned aircraft that is equipped with a sensing device, which includes cameras and microphones.  Violation of the law would be a gross misdemeanor.  2014 STATUS:  In House Rules Committee.

HB 2789:  Drones.  This bill attempts to regulate the use of drones by government agencies, both law enforcement and regulatory agencies.  It makes exempt from public disclosure any personal information that is gathered by government agency drones, but states that the provisions of the bill do not expand or contract a government agency’s obligations under the Public Records Act.  It does not regulate the use of drones by private individuals or non-governmental entities.  2014 STATUS:  Passed House; passed Senate; delivered to Governor.

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TAXES

SB 5041:  Broadcaster B & O Tax.  This bill would enact the recommendations of the tax preference review process.  It would not repeal broadcasters’ B & O Tax deductions from gross revenue for national, network and regional advertising, but it would require the Department of Revenue to update the standard deduction every five years.  2013 STATUS:  In Senate Ways & Means Committee.  2014 STATUS:   In Senate Ways & Means Committee.

E2SSB 5688:  Simplifying B & O Tax Classifications.  This bill attempts to reorganize the B & O Tax statute to cluster similar businesses with identical tax rates into the same section.  It takes the section of law in which the broadcaster B & O Tax is located and strips out dissimilar businesses, leaving broadcasters and newspapers in the section with no substantive changes.  The substitute bill does not change the broadcaster B & O Tax provisions.  The bill was amended by the Senate to remove all of the substance of the bill and create a work group to return to the Legislature at the end of 2013 with recommendations for simplifying B & O tax classifications.  2013 STATUS:  Passed Senate; did not pass House; returned to Senate Rules Committee at end of 2013 Regular Session.  2014 STATUS:  In Senate Rules Committee.

HB 2038: Narrowing or Eliminating Certain Tax Preferences.  This bill would reduce or eliminate about 15 different tax preferences as a source of funding for the House version of the 2013-2015 state budget.  This House tax package does not include broadcaster’s B & O Tax calculations.  2013 STATUS:  Passed House; did not pass Senate; returned to House Rules Committee at end of 2013 Regular Session.  2014 STATUS:  In House Finance Committee.

HB 2110:  Uniform B & O Tax Rate.  This bill would set the B & O Tax rate for most businesses, including broadcast advertising revenue at 0.2904%, which is a considerable reduction from the current broadcast rate of 0.484%.  2014 STATUS:  In House Finance Committee.

Proposed Reduction in Benefit of Preferential B & O Tax Rates.  Governor Inslee proposed to increase B & O Tax rates on a number of industries, including broadcasters.  Overall, the increase would have amounted to 25%, but broadcasters B & O Tax rate was proposed to increase from .484% to .738%, a 52% increase.  No such stand-alone legislation was introduced.  The final Budget did not include any provisions relating to broadcaster B & O Tax rates or deductions.  2013 STATUS: Never introduced as a formal bill.  2014 STATUS:  Not introduced at this time.

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MISCELLANEOUS

SB 5000:  Aeronautic Safety-MET Towers:  This bill would establish visibility marking and lighting requirements for certain guyed towers fifth feet or more in height that are not otherwise governed by state or federal law, rule or regulation.  It also does not apply to towers the primary purpose of which is to support telecommunications equipment.   2013 STATUS:  In Senate Transportation Committee.  2014 STATUS:  In Senate Transportation Committee.

SSB 6054/SHB 2241:  Aeronautic Safety-MET Towers:  These two identical bills are slightly different than SB 5000, but each would still establish visibility marking and lighting requirements for certain guyed towers fifty feet or more in height that are not otherwise governed by state or federal law, rule or regulation.  It also does not apply to towers the primary purpose of which is to support telecommunications equipment.  Both Substitute Bills contain the amendment offered by WSAB that exempts broadcast towers that are not otherwise exempt in the bills.  2014 STATUS:  SSB 6054 passed Senate; passed House; delivered to Governor. SHB 2241 in House Rules Committee.

SSB 5364/SHB 1511:  Court Reporting/Real-Time Captioning Services.  These two bills would add real-time captioning services to the current regulation of court reporters.  2013 STATUS:  SSB 5364 in Senate Rules Committee.  SHB 1511 in House Rules Committee. 2014 STATUS:  SSB 5364 in Senate Rules Committee.  SHB 1511 in House Judiciary Committee.

SSB 5602/HB 1689:  Silver Alert.  These two identical bills would establish a “silver alert” for senior citizens over 65 who are missing.  Substitute Senate Bill changes the name of the Endangered Missing Person Advisory to Silver Alert; however, it keeps the same criteria for issuance of a Silver Alert that is required for issuance of an Endangered Missing Person Advisory.  Therefore, if the bill passes in its present form, a Silver Alert would be issued for a much broader group of endangered missing persons than the traditional Silver Alert which is issued for wandering senior citizens with dementia.  2013 STATUS:  SB 5602 in Senate Health Care Committee.  HB 1689 in House Public Safety Committee.  2014 STATUS:  SSB 5602 in Senate Rules Committee.  HB 1689 in House Public Safety Committee

HB 2525:  Public Funding of Supreme Court Campaigns.  This bill would establish a process for providing public funding for Supreme Court campaigns.  In the past, legislation of this type included provisions permitting the Public Disclosure Commission to seek an injunction against a broadcaster to stop broadcasting advertising by a Supreme Court candidate who was in violation of the public funding requirements.  WSAB successfully had that provision removed from previous legislation and is it not included in HB 2525.  2014 STATUS:  In House Government Operations & Elections Committee.

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