BILL REQ. #:  S-4338.1 


State of Washington63rd Legislature2014 Regular Session

By Senators Holmquist Newbry, Angel, Benton, and Padden

Read first time 02/10/14.   Referred to Committee on Governmental Operations.

     AN ACT Relating to increasing legislative transparency by providing mandatory notice and waiting periods before legislative action, banning title-only bills, and opening all legislative committees to the public; and adding new sections to chapter 44.04 RCW.


NEW SECTION.  Sec. 1   A new section is added to chapter 44.04 RCW to read as follows:
     (1) All bills introduced, and any proposed substitute, striking amendment, or conference committee report thereon, must be made publicly available to the members of the legislature and the public at least seventy-two hours before the bill is eligible for a public hearing, legislative action, or to be voted on by the senate or the house of representatives.
     (2) At least seventy-two hours notice must be given of all public hearings held by any legislative committee. Such notice shall contain the date, time, and place of the hearing together with the title and number of each bill, or identification of the subject matter, to be considered at the hearing.
     (3) No bill is eligible for legislative action of any kind unless it has first been subject to a public hearing in the same session of consideration.
     (4) No bill is eligible for legislative action on the floor of either the senate or house of representatives until forty-eight hours after it has been placed on the floor calendar.
     (5) No bill is eligible for final passage in either house of the legislature unless copies of the bill, in the final form to be passed, have been made available to the members of that house of the legislature and the public for at least twenty-four hours.
     (6) This section may be suspended by a two-thirds roll call vote of the members elected to the house of the legislature in which it is pending, and every individual consideration of a bill or action suspending this section must be recorded in the journal of the respective house of the legislature.

NEW SECTION.  Sec. 2   A new section is added to chapter 44.04 RCW to read as follows:
     No bill is eligible for public hearing or legislative consideration of any kind unless the bill lays forth in full the changes to any act or sections of law. Title-only bills are prohibited.

NEW SECTION.  Sec. 3   A new section is added to chapter 44.04 RCW to read as follows:
     (1) All committees of the legislature are open to the public and shall follow the requirements of chapter 42.30 RCW.
     (2) A policy committee may not temporarily adjourn solely for the purpose of allowing caucus meetings with the public excluded so that committee members may discuss a pending vote on a bill or amendment prior to committee action on a bill.

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