Washington legislators increase use of emergency clause

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July 14, 2009

OLYMPIA, Washington: This year the Washington Legislature attached the "emergency clause" to 68 bills during the legislative session, the fourth lowest year of it's use. In the past 12 years, lawmakers have attached it to a grand total of 813 bills, according to a report by the Snohomish Times newspaper.

As stated in the Washington Constitution, citizens have a right to bring legislation to referendum through the petition process. The "emergency clause," however, exempts legislation from repeal through the referendum process. The clause is applicable to a bill that is "necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health or safety, support of the state government and its existing public institutions."[1]

See also

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* Laws governing the initiative process in Washington