Since mid-March, the Senate has been holding hearings on House bills and the House has been considering Senate bills. Many of my bills have received public hearings in House committees, while some are still awaiting action.
SB 5679 – My “rules review” bill. This would require the Department of Ecology, Department of Health, and Department Labor and Industries to perform a formal review of existing rules – using only existing funds – every five years. The objective of the review is to reduce the regulatory burden on businesses without compromising public health and safety by improving the process for licensing, permitting and inspection. The departments must also establish benchmarks to assess the progress of streamlining efforts, as well as establish a process to eliminate redundant, outdated or unnecessary. Would also require reports to the Legislature by January 2014. Had a public hearing in the House Committee on Government Operations & Elections yesterday.
SB 5680 – My “online licensing” bill. SB 5680 would add 13 state departments and agencies to the list of those required to provide some or all of their licenses online through the state’s Business Licensing Service, assuming both the licensing agency and the department agree to it. It would also remove two agencies which no longer provide licenses, and require an annual report to the governor and Legislature. Scheduled for passage by the House Committee on Technology & Economic Development on Tuesday.
SB 5718 – My “one-stop portal” bill. This measure would require the Legislature to monitor the progress of an action plan for creating a single online location through which businesses could conduct all their interactions with state government. The state Office of the Chief Information Officer – in collaboration with the Department of Revenue, the Department of Labor and Industries, the Secretary of State, the Employment Security Department, the Department of Commerce, and the Office of Regulatory Assistance – would establish performance benchmarks for the action plan by November 2013. The OCIO would also be required to submit annual progress reports beginning January 1, 2014, but the act would expire when initial implementation is reached or if funding is not provided after the first progress report. Scheduled for passage by the House Committee on Technology & Economic Development on Tuesday.
SB 5701 – My bill would add the Professional Educator Standards Board to the list of organizations that may file complaints with the state Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. Right now, the board is responsible for certifying teachers in our state but it lacks the ability to refer to OSPI those teachers it believes are submitting fraudulent test results. As a member of the Senate Early Learning and K-12 Education Committee, I want to authorize the board to initiate investigations of teachers it has reason to believe are essentially trying to cheat the system, but I also want to provide the option for any certificated school employee whose certificate is in question to appeal any allegation. Passed by the House Committee on Education on Tuesday.