DOC drops contract with vendor exposed by Senate investigation The Washington Department of Corrections announced today that it will not renew a contract with information technology vendor Assessments.com.  The troubling history of Assessments.com was exposed during Senate hearings on the Department of Corrections’ early-release-of-prisoners scandal.  Numerous witnesses testified in Senate hearings that the vendor favored by former Secretary Bernie... Read More...
2016 Session Review The 2016 Legislature adjourned for the year following a brief special session to complete an update of our two-year state budget. The House originally proposed a large tax increase and spending down emergency reserves, but the Senate urged a different approach. The result: a bipartisan supplemental budget that provides strategic... Read More...
New Program to Reduce Veteran Unemployment Washington is home to more than 340,000 working-age veterans. And fortunately for us, our community has the largest number of working-age veterans in the state. However, our state has a higher veteran unemployment rate than the rest of the nation. That’s why I authored legislation that created the first-ever, statewide... Read More...
Improving veterans’ employment and health care The men and women who serve in our military protect us overseas. We need to make sure they’re treated well at home.  This year, legislation I authored will encourage the hiring of veterans and the reduction of unemployment for those who served this country. Starting October 1st, employers will be... Read More...
Dysfunction at Western State Hospital Escapes at Western State Hospital left the public in danger and led to a statewide manhunt to apprehend an individual responsible for a brutal slaying. Fortunately, authorities were able to recapture all escapees before anyone else was victimized. But this is only the latest symptom of the disarray at Western... Read More...
Improving traffic along the JBLM/I-5 Corridor As your state senator, one of my goals has always been to see traffic improve on the JBLM/I-5 corridor. The military base is our county’s largest employer. Improving access to and from the base is key to maintaining the military’s commitment to current force levels and the 1000’s of military... Read More...
Reforming traffic fine collections On Friday Governor Jay Inslee signed into law legislation putting in place a plan to tackle challenges posed by the significant number of driver’s license suspensions in Washington. I sponsored Senate Bill 6360, which will bring together law enforcement, the courts, and other stakeholders to address the challenges faced by... Read More...
Keeping victims informed   Under a bill I sponsored that was signed into law by the governor Friday, the review board that determines whether to release or keep prisoners serving long terms in custody will now be required to notify and provide information to the court, prosecuting attorney and most importantly the victim... Read More...
Reducing pregnancy related deaths Washington will now have a Maternal Mortality Review Commission which was created by a bill I sponsored that was signed into law by the governor on Friday. Pregnancy-related deaths have been on the rise nationally during the past 30 years from a rate of 7.2 per 100,000 live births in... Read More...
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