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House Chamber, Olympia, Tuesday, January 13, 2003

             The House was called to order at 9:55 a.m. by the Speaker (Representative Lovick presiding).

             Reading of the Journal of the previous day was dispensed with and it was ordered to stand approved.


January 13, 2003

Mr. Speaker:

             The President has signed SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 8400, and the same is herewith transmitted.

Milt H. Doumit, Secretary



HB 1041           by Representatives Lantz, Kagi, Conway, Chase, Kirby, Dickerson, Kenney, Campbell, Talcott, Skinner and Jarrett

             AN ACT Relating to mental health advance directives; amending RCW 11.94.010 and 7.70.065; reenacting and amending RCW 9.94A.515 and 9.94A.515; adding a new section to chapter 11.94 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 7.70 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 9A.60 RCW; adding a new chapter to Title 71 RCW; prescribing penalties; providing an effective date; and providing an expiration date.,

             Referred to Committee on Judiciary.


HB 1042           by Representatives McMahan, Talcott, Mielke, McDonald, Hinkle, Benson, Carrell, Cox and Holmquist

             AN ACT Relating to increasing certain business and occupation tax credit, exemption, and filing threshold amounts; and amending RCW 82.04.4451, 82.16.040, and 82.32.045.,

             Referred to Committee on Finance.


HB 1043           by Representatives McMahan, Talcott, Mielke, Benson, Hinkle, McDonald, Cox, Holmquist, Bush and Schoesler

             AN ACT Relating to state mandates on school districts; and adding a new section to chapter 28A.150 RCW.,

             Referred to Committee on Education.


HB 1044           by Representatives McMahan, Benson, Hinkle, Carrell, Mielke, McDonald, Cox, Holmquist and Simpson

             AN ACT Relating to providing tax relief for senior citizens and persons retired because of physical disability; amending RCW 84.36.381; and creating a new section.,

             Referred to Committee on Finance.


HB 1045           by Representatives Miloscia, Chandler and Upthegrove

             AN ACT Relating to water-sewer district bidding provisions; and amending RCW 57.08.050.,

             Referred to Committee on Local Government.


HB 1046           by Representatives Miloscia, Chandler and Upthegrove

             AN ACT Relating to the sale of property by water-sewer districts; and amending RCW 57.08.016.,

             Referred to Committee on Local Government.


HB 1047           by Representatives Miloscia, Bush and Dunshee

             AN ACT Relating to assumptions of water-sewer districts by cities and towns; adding a new section to chapter 36.93 RCW; and adding new sections to chapter 35.13A RCW.,

             Referred to Committee on Local Government.


HB 1048           by Representative Cooper

             AN ACT Relating to the state building code; and amending RCW 19.27.031.,

             Referred to Committee on Local Government.


HB 1049           by Representatives Sullivan, Nixon, Campbell and Pflug

             AN ACT Relating to sales and use tax exemptions for medical equipment; amending RCW 82.08.0283 and 82.12.0277; and providing an effective date.,

             Referred to Committee on Finance.


HB 1050           by Representatives Nixon and Anderson

             AN ACT Relating to operation of a vehicle, railroad, street car, vessel, or aircraft involved in a fatality; amending RCW 46.61.506; and adding a new section to chapter 10.58 RCW.,

             Referred to Committee on Judiciary.


HB 1051           by Representative Nixon

             AN ACT Relating to protecting persons who provide volunteer emergency care; and amending RCW 4.24.300.,

             Referred to Committee on Judiciary.


HB 1052           by Representative Nixon

             AN ACT Relating to protecting persons who provide volunteer emergency services; and adding a new section to chapter 4.24 RCW.,

             Referred to Committee on Judiciary.


HB 1053           by Representatives Miloscia, Armstrong, Haigh, Simpson, Schoesler, Quall, O'Brien, Kirby, Cox, Eickmeyer, Berkey, McCoy, Ruderman, Hatfield, Sullivan, Morris, Linville, Ahern, Veloria, Bush, Conway, Dickerson, Lovick, Fromhold, Dunshee, Gombosky, Kenney, Kagi, Schual-Berke and Campbell

             AN ACT Relating to government accountability; adding new sections to chapter 43.41 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 43.09 RCW; and creating a new section.,

             Referred to Committee on State Government.


HB 1054           by Representatives Dickerson, Skinner, Romero, Haigh, O'Brien, Kenney, Darneille, Kagi, Clements, Sommers, Chase, Miloscia, McDermott, Kirby, Schual-Berke, Lovick and Kessler

             AN ACT Relating to duty of clergy to report child abuse or neglect; and reenacting and amending RCW 26.44.030.,

             Referred to Committee on Children & Family Services.


HB 1055           by Representatives O'Brien, Nixon, Hunt, Romero, Clements, Mielke, Simpson, Cairnes, Sullivan, Chase, Veloria, Bush, Darneille and Kessler

             AN ACT Relating to body-gripping traps; and amending RCW 77.15.192 and 77.15.194.,

             Referred to Committee on Fisheries, Ecology & Parks.


HB 1056           by Representatives Simpson and Campbell

             AN ACT Relating to notifying home buyers of where information regarding registered sex offenders may be obtained; adding a new section to chapter 19.149 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 64.06 RCW; and creating a new section.,

             Referred to Committee on Financial Institutions & Insurance.


HB 1057           by Representatives Hatfield, Buck, Blake and Kessler

             AN ACT Relating to commercial fishing violations; amending RCW 77.15.700; adding new sections to chapter 77.15 RCW; and creating a new section.,

             Referred to Committee on Fisheries, Ecology & Parks.


HB 1058           by Representatives Kagi, Boldt, McIntire, Nixon, Dickerson, Fromhold, O'Brien, Lantz, Linville, Kenney, Kessler, Clibborn, Talcott, Simpson and Wood

             AN ACT Relating to educational attainment of children in foster care; adding new sections to chapter 74.15 RCW; and creating a new section.,

             Referred to Committee on Children & Family Services.


HB 1059           by Representatives Veloria, Sump, Grant and Clements

             AN ACT Relating to the creation of a joint legislative oversight committee on trade policy; adding a new chapter to Title 44 RCW; and declaring an emergency.,

             Referred to Committee on Trade & Economic Development.


HB 1060           by Representatives Veloria, Kenney, Conway, Cox, Hunt, Clements, Morrell, Kessler, Simpson, Wood and Berkey

             AN ACT Relating to making related and supplemental educational instruction for apprentices graded courses at community and technical colleges; amending RCW 28B.50.880 and 28B.15.069; and reenacting and amending RCW 28B.15.515.,

             Referred to Committee on Higher Education.


HB 1061           by Representatives Veloria, Kenney, Conway, Cox, Hunt, Clements, Morrell, Campbell, Kessler, Simpson, Wood and Berkey

             AN ACT Relating to creating associate degree pathways for apprentices; adding a new section to chapter 49.04 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 28B.50 RCW; and creating a new section.,

             Referred to Committee on Higher Education.


HJM 4004         by Representatives Nixon, Campbell, Bush, Kessler, Talcott and Simpson

             Requesting Congress to restore the federal income tax deduction for state and local sales taxes.

             Referred to Committee on Finance.

             There being no objection, the bills and memorial listed on the day's introduction sheet under the fourth order of business were referred to the committees so designated.

             The House recessed until 3:30 p.m. at which time the House and Senate came together in Joint Session for the purpose of hearing the Governor's State of the State address at Worthington Hall, St. Martin's College, Lacey.


             The President of the Senate, Lieutenant Governor Brad Owen called the Joint Session to order. Members were requested to take seats.

             The Clerk called the roll of the House and a quorum was present. The Clerk called the roll of the Senate and a quorum was present.

             The President appointed a special committee to escort the Supreme Court Justices to seats within the hall: Representatives Mike Carrell, Judy Clibborn, Lois McMahan and Eric Pettigrew, and Senators Stephen Johnson, Adam Kline, Larry Sheahan and Pat Thibaudeau.

             The President appointed a special committee to escort the Statewide Elected Officials to seats within the hall: Representatives Mike Armstrong, Ross Hunter, Dawn Morrell and Jan Shabro, and Senators Tracey Eide, Patricia Hale, Jim Horn and Harriet Spanel.

             The President appointed a special committee to advise His Excellency, Governor Gary Locke that the Joint Session had been assembled and to escort him to the hall: Representatives John McCoy and Dan Newhouse, and Senators Bob Oke and Rosa Franklin.

             The Sergeant at Arms announced that the Supreme Court Justices had arrived. The President requested that the Justices be escorted to their seats and introduced them to the hall: Chief Justice Gerry Alexander, Associate Chief Justice Charles W. Johnson, Justice Barbara A. Madsen, Justice Richard B. Sanders, Justice Faith Ireland, Justice Bobbe Bridge, Justice Tom Chambers, Justice Susan Owens and Justice Mary Fairhurst.

             The Sergeant at Arms announced that the Statewide Elected Officials had arrived. The President requested that the Statewide Elected Officials be escorted to their seats and introduced them to the hall: Secretary of State Sam Reed, State Treasurer Mike Murphy, State Auditor Brian Sonntag, State Attorney General Christine O. Gregoire, Superintendent of Public Instruction Terry Bergeson, Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler and Commissioner of Public Lands Doug Sutherland.

             The President introduced the officers and members of the Consular Association of Washington: Len Reid, Consul of Australia; H. Ronald Masnik, Consul of Belgium and President of the Consular Association of Washington; Ricardo Antezana, Consul of Bolivia; Daravuth Huoth, Consul of Cambodia; Roger Simmons, Consul General of Canada; Jorge Gilbert, Consul of Chile; Frank Brozovich, Consul of Croatia; Vassos M. Demetriou, Consul of Cyprus; Mart Kask, Consul of Estonia; Jack A. Cowan, Consul of France; Christian Seifert, Consul of Germany; Jon Marvin Jonsson, Consul General of Iceland; Yoshihara Araki, Senior Consul of Japan; Moon, Byung-rok, Consul General of The Republic of Korea; Vytautas V.Lapatinskas, Consul of Lithuania; William H.Weiss, Consul of Malta; Jorge Madrazo, Consul of Mexico; Miguel Angel Velasquez, Consul of Peru; Alexander Doronin, Senior Consul of The Russian Federation; Jahn R. Hedberg, Consul of Sweden; John Gokcen, Consul General of Turkey; David Broom, Consul of United Kingdom; Jack Chiang, Director General, Taipei Economic and Cultural Office

             The President thanked Dr. David Spangler, President of St. Martin's College for allowing the Legislature to use the college's facilities. He also thanked the staff of both the House and Senate for their hard work under difficult circumstances.

             The Sergeant at Arms announced that His Excellency, Governor Gary Locke and Mona Lee Locke had arrived. The President requested that the Governor and Mrs. Locke be escorted to the Rostrum.

             The flags were escorted to the Rostrum by the Washington State Patrol Color Guard. The prayer was offered by Rabbi Michael Latz, Temple Bnai Torah.

             Rabbi Latz: "Sunrise - the first brilliant rays of a new day, the morning light illuminates possibility for each of us, the wide expanse of the day unfolds before our eyes. Night - tis the evening that frightens us. Young children wake terrified from nightmares and the old find themselves in the dark alleys of dispair. The inability to see clearly in the dark terrifies us the most.

             So many of us prefer the daylight - the brilliance of the sun, the clarity of its purpose. But as Sophocles wisely teaches "one must wait until evening to see how splendid the day has been." It live a full day together we must face the night.

             Dusk now descends upon Washington. For years we celebrated the prosperity of the light, a robust economy, security, growth and opportunity. But such celebrations today are but memory‛s fodder - they seemingly evaporated as quickly as morning fog in August. The question before us today dances through the air like fireflies on a warm spring evening. Will we illuminate a new path? Like stars that echo Heaven's radiance, will we be vessels to carry forth the light?

             There is risk born when we face the darkness - why? Because we must recognize those places within ourselves that are unseen, that we fear being exposed - our personal flaws and our failure - for we have know the darkness. Centuries ago, enslaved Israelites pleaded with Pharaoh to set them free. He stubbornly refused and darkness descended upon the land. And yet in the hovels of slavery the flames of justice burned unconsumed - no great power, no fanatic tyrant was able to extinguish the promise of human dignity, the promise of our full worth. And in our own time we call to memory Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who's birth we celebrate tomorrow. In the valleys of hatred and in the alleys of corruption, he led the way for each of us to dream for ourselves and our children. They could enslave the body but the soul longs to sing forever free.

             Today, we must confront the depths of our anguish and the remote despair. We look at the raging indifference of midnight and the haunting simplicity of twilight. We wistfully long for the moments when it was all so simple, so clear and so bright. Some of use will close our eyes and wish our fears away but history call to us - to each of us - and we cannot escape her haunting presence. And so we us answer the call to carry the torch of justice, integrity and freedom forward. And we must answer her in the affirmative. Tis our only choice. For ours is to face the questions of ultimate concern - eternity calls to us - heed the cries of our companions, heed their suffering. With our collective strength, with the sweat of our spirit and the tears of our souls, we can kindle the tiny embers of possibility until they smolder with the radiance of the Universe. And in the depths of our conscience, a whisper for generations past and those yet to be, we can hear humanity's song, light is sewn for the righteous and justice shines like a beacon.

             To embrace a new day together, we must face the night."

             President Owen stated the purpose of the Joint Session was to receive the Governor's State of the State message.


             Governor Locke: "Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, Honorable Chief Justice, distinguished Justices of the Supreme Court, members of the Consular Association, statewide elected officials, members of the Washington State Legislature, people of Washington:

             It's great to welcome many friends back to Olympia. I'd also like to especially welcome the new members of this 58th Legislature. I share your pride in the opportunity to serve the people of Washington. And I look forward to a productive session in which we work together across party lines to meet our state's pressing challenges, advance our vision of Washington's future, and leave at the end of the session with the people's business completed.

             We will be tested by difficult decisions. And I believe we have uniquely promising opportunities to advance our agenda for a better Washington.

Tough Times

             Today we face tough economic times. A national recession, the nation's third highest unemployment rate, and the largest deficit in the history of our state—$2.4 billion. Washington families are struggling, and uncertain about their future. We can and will direct our own destiny. We can and will continue to be trailblazers as we have in the past. We can and will lead the way by showing discipline, creativity, and common sense in tackling today's challenges.

Tough Choices—The Budget

             We will make tough choices in the days ahead. But tough choices today mean a better tomorrow. We must restore public trust in government by making the hard choices—and the right choices. Choices that protect our state's most vital interests. Choices that strongly position our state for a sustainable future. A future of stronger communities, a more vibrant economy, a healthier environment, and a continued high quality of life. I think of our state as a family, struggling through difficult economic times right now. And like every family, we will continue to take care of one another. We will continue to plan for the future and better times for our children and grandchildren.

             We will build such a future by focusing on what matters most. The way to get back on our feet economically is to live within our means. By sticking together and sacrificing together, we will get through these tough times.

             The results-oriented budget I have proposed is a bold response to our deficit. Nearly every state in America faces serious economic challenges. But we are the first state in the nation to tackle our problems head-on by re-examining how we govern—and fundamentally changing how we govern. Our Priorities of Government approach is becoming a model for other states to follow.

             We exhaustively studied all that we do—examining some 1,400 state government activities. Then, like a family on a very tight budget, we sat down and looked at how we've typically spent our money. We decided how we now need to spend it to get the results we want.

             My budget proposal clearly states what we believe are the priorities of state government: education, jobs, healthy families, safe communities, and protection of vulnerable children and adults. We must all be disciplined in our approach. In preparing this proposal, I made decisions that were personally difficult. There are programs and services we will each be reluctant to see reduced or eliminated. But we must focus on our core priorities.

             The budget I've proposed will let us do what matters most without a general tax increase. A general tax increase in these tough economic times will hurt, not help, our economic recovery. The $2.4 billion dollar deficit would require a sales tax increase of over 1 percent. That will not help struggling families. That will not help struggling businesses.

             The tough choices we make today will lead us to a better, more secure tomorrow.

Education First

             Even as we make necessary reductions, we must still aggressively pursue our highest priorities—and we will. Education remains my highest priority. We are committed to building a world-class education system. Education is the key to a vital economy and a prosperous future for our children. We must continue to invest in the future—in their future.

             It is vitally important that we protect the core of education even as we make deep and painful budget cuts in other areas. That's why 56% of the proposed budget is allocated to education. K-12 education is one of the very few areas in which we will be spending more in the upcoming biennium than in the current one.

             There has been some confusion about my intentions regarding Initiative 728 and 732. I want to emphasize that my budget proposal delays—not cancels—both voter-approved initiatives. During the past two years, Initiative 728 provided $400 million to reduce class size in public schools. Under my proposal, schools will continue to receive that money during the next two years. Further enhancements will resume again in the 2005-2006 school year.

             My plan also calls for the automatic cost-of-living adjustments for teachers to be reinstated beginning in 2005. I acknowledge the many teachers and supporters who are in Olympia today, rallying in support of education. I appreciate the dedication and hard work of our educators. We ask you to do so much. You are not paid enough. I wish we could do more.

             I remain committed to high standards, goals and expectations for achievement for every student in every school. We must continue the gains we have made. The test scores of our students have consistently improved. We've seen great progress at schools like Garfield Elementary in Spokane, where the percentage of 4th graders meeting the math standards has gone from only 14% to 81% in just a few years. Schools like Union Gap Elementary, where the percentage of 4th graders meeting the reading standards has gone from only 21% to 74%. We've seen reading scores climb for all grades in our state, thanks to programs like the Washington Reading Corp, which has helped 22,000 struggling readers advance in their reading skills by more than one full grade level.

             While test scores are on the rise, there's a widening disparity between minority and white students… that growing achievement gap is unacceptable. A good education is a universal right and must never depend on circumstances of social or economic standing. We'll close the gaps by reforming the Learning Assistance Program to ensure that the schools with at risk kids receive and keep the money they need.

             As I announced yesterday, we must also simplify and reform the WASL high school graduation requirements. I support a constitutional amendment to allow the passage of school levies by a simple majority of the voters. If we can build police stations, symphony halls, low-income housing and professional sports stadiums with a simple majority, then it should also be sufficient for our schools. It's time to remove artificial distinctions between neighboring school districts. Currently, some school districts right next door to one another have vastly different levy limits. That's not fair, and that's why I'm proposing legislation that would allow all school districts the opportunity to ask their local voters for levies up to 36% of their levy base.

             That will also help those districts with high costs of living meet the needs of their teachers. We are honoring our commitment to education. As I said, K-12 education is one of the very few areas in which we will be spending more in the upcoming biennium than in the current one.

             But we can and must do more. Building an education system where every child achieves his or her potential requires new approaches and new commitments. The structure and funding of our education system has not changed even as we have learned more about what's needed and even as we have demanded more of our students and teachers. We must recognize that the lines we have traditionally drawn between pre-school and K-12, and between K-12 and college are artificial. Our education system must be seamless, with all components—from early learning to graduate school—working together as one.

             That system needs stable and dedicated funding. I intend to work with education and legislative leaders in establishing an Education Trust Fund to address urgent needs and reforms not covered in the education budget. We may be facing tough economic times, but education, and especially higher education, is a key part of our economic engine. I will not propose a general tax increase to fund this Trust. Rather, we will consider other funding sources such as "sin taxes."

Jobs are the Key

             A strong education system prepares our workforce for good, family-wage jobs. And jobs are the key to economic recovery. We must do all we can this session to create and support jobs in our state. That's why I have a five-point plan for jobs and economic recovery.

             First, we will create new jobs by building a better Washington. Approving my state construction budget will mean more than 13,000 new private sector construction and other family-wage jobs during the next two years - jobs building and renovating buildings on the campuses of our colleges and universities, public schools and our prisons. Let's approve the state construction budget as early as possible and get those family-wage jobs to the workers who need them. Let's build a better Washington.

             Second, we must intensify our focus on trade and the jobs that trade creates. Last year, our trade missions to Japan, Korea, China and Singapore were successful in advancing trade partnerships with some of the world's most promising markets. We returned from Japan and Korea with immediate new sales for Washington businesses. Last month we promoted Boeing airplane sales in China and promoted biotechnology in Singapore. China is already our 3rd largest export trade partner. It is a huge market with great potential for the sale of Washington products and services. And Singapore is now interested in funding biotech companies in our state. We must continue to pursue these golden opportunities to create jobs in our state.

             Third, we must continue to improve our business climate to keep our state competitive in attracting and keeping businesses. We are making exceptional progress. Over the years, we've reduced the B&O tax on businesses, cut red tape, and streamlined regulatory processes. The Department of Ecology has set a goal to act on 90% of all permits within 90 days. We're on target to meet this goal. We approved a Safeway distribution center—the largest construction project in Safeway's history—in less than 60 days. Indeed, in the last 12 months, three national companies chose Washington over other Northwest states for major facilities and hundreds of jobs: Safeway in Auburn, WalMart in Grandview, and Ferguson Enterprises in Tri-Cities. I am directing that these successful practices be implemented all across our state government. These successes can and will increase.

             The fourth point in my jobs and economic recovery plan is new economic development tools. Our Constitution prohibits many incentives that other states use to attract businesses. I am proposing to add a new funding tool that will allow local governments to finance the critical infrastructure that businesses are looking for in making location and expansion decisions. Our proposal will help attract at least $400 million in private sector investment.

             The Community Economic Revitalization Board program has attracted a British Columbia manufacturing company to Blaine, a grass seed cleaning operation to Odessa, and a technology center to the Port of Chelan County. This program has created thousands of jobs for rural areas, but has lost its funding source. So I'm submitting legislation to provide permanent funding to keep this program going. It's a strong source of good jobs for rural families and I hope you'll support it.

             Fifth and finally, we must continue to create jobs with investments in education, especially by supporting industries of the future like biotechnology and software. I'm proposing $20 million in higher education funding to expand enrollments at our colleges and universities by more than 1,500 students, dedicated exclusively to such high-demand fields as engineering, computer science and health care. Our state's businesses continue to need these critical skills. I don't want Washington companies to have to hire people from out-of-state to meet their needs. I want Washington citizens to have the first chance at filling these good paying jobs. We're also providing funding to retrain more than 7,200 unemployed workers.

             Following this five-point plan and working together will lead us to more jobs and accelerate our economic recovery.

Transportation Solutions Now

             Of course, we need an efficient transportation system to attract and retain businesses. The transportation crisis is too important to ignore. We still need to fix our deadliest roads and highways. And making improvements to Washington's roads, public transit, and ferries will also bring more family-wage jobs—thousands of them.

             For too many legislative sessions, we have deferred, delayed and postponed. Our state's transportation problems must be solved here in Olympia. We will do it by working together—Democrats and Republicans. The longer we wait, the more it will cost. So let's get started.


             As the Competitiveness Council emphasized, a strong business climate does not mean lowering environmental standards. Just last month, businesses, environmentalists and local government announced an historic agreement to protect our shorelines. I want to thank our Attorney General Christine Gregoire for helping mediate that agreement.

             I'm proposing funding to implement that agreement. We can be proud that we have a rescue tug to protect our coastline and the Strait of Juan de Fuca from oil spills. Funding for that rescue tug must continue.

             Over the years, my administration has worked hard on other environmental issues critical to our state, such as salmon restoration and modernizing our water laws. I congratulate the Legislature for the great strides we've made, but there's more to do. We need to help more communities fix unfit drinking water systems, and move forward on water storage projects.

Keeping the Safety Net Intact

             The soaring costs of medical care have exacerbated our state's fiscal condition. We can't handle these skyrocketing costs alone and forever at the state level. We must continue to push Congress and the Administration to provide a national solution to the nation's health care woes. The good news is that even in these tough economic times, my budget proposal continues to fund all existing health care programs for children. We will still be among the top three or five in the nation in providing health care for our kids.

             But let's recognize that the cost of prescription drugs is a key driver of our escalating health care costs. As a purchaser of prescription drugs, the state must implement a preferred drug list of safe, effective and affordable drugs to reduce the costs to state government. And let's work together to extend the state's buying power to benefit seniors and others without prescription drug coverage. I'm also proposing that we establish a new Senior Prescription Drug Information Clearinghouse. This program will help low-income seniors obtain drugs that are available free, or at low cost, from pharmaceutical companies. It will also provide information on generic drugs and discount purchasing clubs.

Government Efficiency

             As we strive to do more with less, we will continue to work hard to make state government more efficient, more effective and less costly. We'll continue to find ways to better serve the people of our state through technology. Many of our agencies and their services have been rated the best in the nation, thanks to the work of state employees. Unfortunately, state government employees will feel the pain of cutbacks. The state workforce will continue to shrink—a total of 2,500 full-time jobs will be eliminated in the next 12 months. These employment reductions are necessary, but not easy. I deeply appreciate the hard work of our state employees. Their dedication to their jobs and to our state is remarkable. And I ask for their continued dedication. State workers are the face of our government, and directly interact with our citizens. We count on state employees every day to make government work—and work well. So, on behalf of the people of Washington, I thank our state employees.


             Difficult times remind us that we cannot do everything. But we can do the things that matter most by being disciplined, creative and determined. And like any family, we can do our best to learn from hard times and plan for the future. I am proposing a constitutional amendment for a constitutionally-protected "rainy day fund." As our economy recovers, we must make every effort to protect ourselves and set aside resources to help our state the next time we experience hard times.

             I am confident that we will overcome our challenges. Tough decisions today will bring us a better tomorrow. I want a Washington known across America as "The Education State." I want a Washington where every person has ample opportunity to earn a good living and hold a family-wage job. I want a Washington that protects and takes care of its most vulnerable children and adults, a state where people feel safe and secure and part of a caring community. I want a Washington that attracts new businesses and is confidently geared toward the prosperous industries of the future. And I want a Washington with an unrivaled quality of life, and a sustainable future of exceptional education, economic vitality and a healthy environment. A state where our children and grandchildren will want to live, work, and raise their families.

             Join me in making this happen. If we work hard, if we work together, if we make the tough choices, we will accomplish great things.

             Thank you and God bless you all."

             The President thanked the Governor for his remarks.

             The Governor and Mrs. Locke were escorted out of the hall. The Statewide Elected Officials were escorted out of the hall. The Supreme Court Justices were escorted out of the hall.

             On motion of Representative Kessler, the Joint Session was dissolved.

             There being no objection, the House advanced to the eleventh order of business.


             There being no objection, the House adjourned until 9:55 a.m., January 15, 2003, the 3rd Day of the Regular Session.

FRANK CHOPP, Speaker                                                                                  CYNTHIA ZEHNDER, Chief Clerk