SHB 1559

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

As Reported by Senate Committee On:

Higher Education, March 19, 2015

Title: An act relating to higher education programs at Washington State University and the University of Washington.

Brief Description: Concerning higher education programs at Washington State University and the University of Washington.

Sponsors: House Committee on Higher Education (originally sponsored by Representatives Riccelli, Johnson, Wylie, Parker, MacEwen, Harris, Rodne, Schmick, Short, Pettigrew, Ormsby, Robinson, Van De Wege, Klippert, Reykdal, Sawyer, Holy, Walsh, S. Hunt, Kretz, Vick, Gregerson, McCaslin, Pike, Scott, Smith, Lytton, Hudgins, Ryu, Condotta, Sells, Moscoso, Hurst, Santos, Buys, Fey, Takko, Blake, Dent, Nealey, Kilduff, Chandler, Wilcox, Haler, Magendanz, Peterson, Ortiz-Self, Appleton, Manweller, Shea, Senn, Hayes, Kochmar, Hargrove, Muri, Stanford, Fagan, Griffey, Van Werven, Wilson, Harmsworth, Kirby, Tharinger, McBride and Goodman).

Brief History: Passed House: 3/09/15, 81-17.

Committee Activity: Higher Education: 3/19/15 [DP].


Majority Report: Do pass.

Signed by Senators Bailey, Chair; Baumgartner, Vice Chair; Kohl-Welles, Ranking Minority Member; Becker and Miloscia.

Staff: Kimberly Cushing (786-7421)

Background: In 1917 the Washington State Legislature defined the term major line to mean the development of the work or courses of study in certain subjects, leading to a degree in that subject. The Legislature also designated major lines to be exclusively offered by either the University of Washington (UW) or the State College of Washington, later renamed Washington State University (WSU), or to be shared by both UW and WSU.

Today, state law continues to stipulate that certain major lines of study may only be offered by the following universities:

In 1946 the UW School of Medicine was founded. In the early 1970s, the UW created a regional medical education program which today serves Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana, and Idaho and is known as WWAMI. Universities from the five states partner with UW to offer basic sciences courses to first-year medical school students enrolled in WWAMI, including WSU.

Summary of Bill: The WSU Board of Regents is authorized to establish, operate, and maintain a school of medicine. Medicine and forestry are major lines that WSU may offer and teach in addition to UW.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available.

Committee/Commission/Task Force Created: No.

Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.

Staff Summary of Public Testimony: No public hearing was held.

Persons Testifying: N/A.

Persons Signed in to Testify But Not Testifying: N/A.