There were 642 press releases posted in the last 24 hours and 345,170 in the last 365 days.

Wednesday, January 25

Abortion rights activists rally outside Washington’s Legislative Building in Olympia on Tuesday as Senate committees heard testimony on a package of bills aimed at protecting reproductive rights.

Bills to protect abortion rights heard at public hearings Tuesday
A package of legislation on reproductive health was heard in committee throughout the day Tuesday. The proposed legislation comes months after the wind back of national abortion protections under the Dobbs decision, which overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling last June. House and Senate Democrats announced plans then to enshrine reproductive protections, and both chambers have worked on versions of their own bills. During the hearings, several pro-reproductive health supporters gathered on the Capitol steps at a rally held by Pro-Choice Washington. Anti-abortion protesters stood away from pro-choice advocates as they held signs depicting dead fetuses. Some legislators also joined the rally in between committees. “Here in Washington we’re preserving reproductive care so our communities and neighbors are protected from attacks on their health and well-being,” said Rep. Darya Farivar, D-Seattle. Continue reading at Bellingham Herald. (Shauna Sowersby)

Dogs greet a visitor at a kennel suspected of being linked to puppy mills in Snohomish and Skagit Counties in 2009. A 2021 state law barred new businesses from selling cats and dogs sourced from large commercial breeders, but a grandfather clause allowed already-established stores to continue the practice.

New WA law would shut the door on puppy-mill suffering
At the most basic level, good public policy aims at helping communities thrive. By definition, that means working toward less suffering, less misery. So it’s not surprising that among more than 1,000 bills proposed during this legislative session, one that has attracted rapid sponsorship from 30 lawmakers targets a little-recognized source of considerable pain. House Bill 1424 focuses on thwarting puppy mills. These breeding farms — essentially factories for manufacturing pets like so many toasters — treat animals like products, trucking them en masse across the country to pet stores, where they frequently arrive with a host of hidden health problems that are then foisted onto unwitting customers. Continue reading at Seattle Times. (Jim Bates)

Cigarette packs are displayed at a convenience store in New York, Monday, March 18, 2013.

New report gives WA state 3 ‘F’ grades out of 5 categories for tobacco control policies
The results are in for this year’s statewide tobacco prevention effort test. Washington didn’t make the mark. The American Lung Association released its yearly “State of Tobacco Control” report this week for every U.S. state and the federal government. Washington state received three ‘F’ grades out of five total reviews for its lackluster state funding toward tobacco prevention programs, access to cessation resources and its failure to ban flavored tobacco products. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable deaths in Washington state and across the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Around 8,300 Washingtonians die from smoking-related illness each year. In the report, ALA states that about 1 out of every 10 adult residents smoke, and 5% of high school-aged residents smoke. Continue reading at The Olympian. (Mark Lennihan)

Bellingham Herald
Bill would require government and nonprofit Washington employers to pay interns (Keiser)
Bills to protect abortion rights heard at public hearings Tuesday (Farivar, Keiser, Cleveland, Randall, Trudeau, Berry)

Capital Press
DNR resists running some leases past oversight board (Van de Wege)

Abortion bills get legislative hearing; Vancouver Sen. Cleveland sponsors 1 of 2 measures that aim to preserve access (Cleveland)

Everett Herald
Annual homeless count aims to give snapshot of housing crisis
Comment: What research is now proving about firearm laws

News Tribune
High-speed internet is coming to part of rural Pierce County. Here’s the $5 million plan

New York Times
New Lawsuit Challenges State Bans on Abortion Pills

’Issues’ with leader caused this WA state lawmaker to leave the Republican caucus
New report gives WA state 3 ‘F’ grades out of 5 categories for tobacco control policies

Peninsula Daily News
Peninsula hospitals oppose staffing legislation (Van De Wege, Tharinger)

Puget Sound Business Journal
Report: Most Seattle-area hotels ‘fully recovered’ from the pandemic

Seattle Times
Seattle will give free transit cards to all public housing residents
Pedestrian struck by Seattle police vehicle dies
Editorial: New WA law would shut the door on puppy-mill suffering (Berg)
Abortion rights supporters rally outside WA Capitol (Jinkins, Randall, Trudeau, Mena, Riccelli, Farivar)

Skagit Valley Herald
Swinomish tribe wins court battle over funding for dental therapists

Spokesman Review
Spokane County withdraws lawsuit over Camp Hope in show of good faith
State lawmakers hear slew of abortion protection bills following 50th anniversary of Roe v. Wade

Washington Post
White House unveils new tenant protections amid soaring rental costs

Amendment ensuring abortion rights in state constitution introduced in Olympia (Jinkins)
Fatal overdoses, staffing contributing to morgue capacity issues
Research shows cougars on the Olympic Peninsula are isolated from other groups in Washington
New King County Prosecuting Attorney lays out policy changes

Spokane police among first agencies to use VR headsets in officer training

Tacoma works to formalize position on how to fix state’s drug possession laws

KUOW Public Radio
Washington state lawmakers again consider legalizing ‘shrooms‘ (Salomon)
Again, court refuses to hear case challenging WA’s ban on conversion therapy for minors
WA bill would make school meals free for all students (Nobles)
WA lawmakers push stricter .05 DUI limit amid record road deaths (Liias)

Public hearings for bills protecting reproductive freedom (Jinkins, Mena)

Q13 TV (FOX)
New tool aims at connecting victims of rape with resources sooner

Legislature mulls bill to give unemployment recipients more flexibility (Conway)
New drug law would provide alternate route for those with addictions (Salomon)

Seattle’s Child
Lake Washington students push for law against “pink taxing” (Dhingra)