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Dispatches from public radio's correspondent at the Washington Legislature. Austin Jenkins is the Olympia correspondent for the Northwest News Network. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) weekly public affairs program "Inside Olympia."

Bills Die, Live To See Another Day As Washington Legislature Heads Into Second Half

Austin Jenkins
Northwest News Network
Cherry blossoms are already out at the Washington Capitol as a key cutoff deadline passes to move bills out of their House of origin.

Washington lawmakers have approved a flurry of bills -- and killed a bunch too -- as they crossed a key deadline in the 105-day session.

The cut-off to vote bills out of their house of origin came and went at 5 p.m. Wednesday.

In recent days, the Washington House and Senate have approved measures dealing with college tuition, payday lending, distracted driving, oil trains and human trafficking. Bills that did not survive the deadline include: proposals for a training wage for teenage workers, a restriction on strip searches in juvenile detention facilities, and a bill to give the governor the power to declare a state of emergency in the event of a cyber-attack.

Other bills that didn’t pass before the deadline included a ban on marijuana in the passenger compartments of vehicles and a parental notification requirement for abortion.

Many more bills will no doubt be killed off in the weeks ahead. That’s because next up the Washington House and Senate swap bills -- and each chamber is controlled by a different political party.

Since January 2004, Austin Jenkins has been the Olympia-based political reporter for the Northwest News Network. In that position, Austin covers Northwest politics and public policy, as well as the Washington State Legislature. You can also see Austin on television as host of TVW's (the C–SPAN of Washington State) Emmy-nominated public affairs program "Inside Olympia."