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Lawmakers are already pushing new laws

December 23, 2013 J

A preview of coming attractions and distractions for lawmakers next year can be found in the pile of legislation awaiting them when they return to Olympia in January.

There have been 59 bills filed early — 38 in the House and 21 in the Senate — dealing with specialty license plates and protecting hospital employees from violent criminals as well as naming a state waterfall and ensuring natural disasters don’t shut down government.

Here’s a sample of new laws House and Senate members are already pushing:

One overpass, hold the art: There’s a move afoot to end the prettification of bridges, overpasses, sound walls and off-ramps. House Bill 2092would bar state transportation agencies from spending public funds to “acquire works of art” or make “decorative finishes or designs that are not integral to the function of a transportation structure.”

Washington Pot & Trust: Who better to handle the cash for the pot industry than the state, right? Senate Bill 5955 creates a publicly owned trust to “act as the sole depository for in-state marijuana producers, processers, and retailers and to use taxable earnings from those deposits for the benefit of the people and economy of the state.”

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