April 1, 2010

To the Honorable Speaker and Members,
The House of Representatives of the State of Washington

Ladies and Gentlemen:

I am returning herewith, without my approval, Engrossed Second Substitute House Bill 1096 entitled:

"AN ACT Relating to enhancing small business participation in state purchasing."

I support the intent of this bill and believe that state government can and should be more active in promoting state contracting procurement with small businesses. Small businesses are a vital component in building and stabilizing Washington's economy. State agencies already provide outreach and training to the small business community. Earlier legislation I signed imposed a freeze on contracts at this time to save money. In addition this bill requires a collection of data that is burdensome, resource-intensive, and lacks accountability. Further, the Departments of General Administration, Information Services, and Transportation were not appropriated funds for this purpose and would each be required to absorb the cost to implement the bill.

I am vetoing this bill but I urge the Legislature during the next session to develop legislation that provides appropriate reporting requirements and that can be implemented within appropriated funds.

For these reasons I have vetoed Engrossed Second Substitute House Bill 1096 in its entirety.

Respectfully submitted,
Christine Gregoire