Washington State Legislature
"The Civil Rights Movement of this decade is Mental Health Care quality and equality."
-- Updated September 25, 2007 --

      Welcome!   Or, Welcome Back!

    The 2007 Legislative Session ended April 22, 2007. The Democrats held a majority in both the State House and Senate, and Washington State has a Democrat for Governor.

    The Washington State Legislature is a bicameral body with 49 members in the Senate and 98 members in the House of Representatives. There is one Senator and two House members in each of Washington's 49 legislative districts.

    The citizen legislature meets annually on the second Monday in January in the ornate Capitol building in Olympia. In even numbered years, the legislature meets for 60 days and in the odd numbered year (the budget year) they meet for 105 days. The legislature is scheduled to meet for 60 days in 2008. If necessary, the Governor can call legislators in for a special session for a 30 day period. Legislators can call themselves into special session with a two-thirds vote of the two bodies.

    Members of the Senate are elected to four-year terms, while House members are elected to two-year terms. All House members will be up for election this year and about half of the Senate members are up for election.

    For more information on many other issues related to legislation, please go to our main activist page at Mental Health Activist Home Page and click on the Hot News, Hot Issues, and Hot Dates buttons.

      The 2007 Washington State Legislature.

      2008 Legislature News.

    Although we will be doing our best to keep this page updated, if you want the very latest legislative news, please go to the Google News Search Engine page and type into the search box the words "Washington State Legislature" or a similar search phrase. You will get a comprehensive list of the most current articles from a large number of publications. Also, please note that the Seattle Times now requires you to register to view archived material. It does not take much time, and it is worth the effort.

      Seattle Newspape Legislature Web Site
      Want Information About Your U.S. Senators and Representatives?

      How to Get Information and Contact State Legislators.

    • Get the Washington Legislative District Zip Code Look-up.

    • Go to the Washington State Legislature Web page to get information about meetings, hearings, legislation, and legislators.

    • Find out about Hearing Schedules? Please go to the Calendar Page at the Washington Legislature Web site. The Calendar Page has a link called "Weekly Meeting Schedule" which will give you information about the upcoming or current week of hearings.

    • Leave a Message by Phone. Dial 1-800-562-6000, which is a hotline that allows you to speak to a live operator and leave a message for your district legislators and the Governor.

    • E-mail members of the House and Senate. To find relevant House Member and Senate Member e-mail addresses, see our links further below.

    • Send a letter by regular mail. It may take longer, but might be noticed more than an e-mail. The postal addresses are:

        [House Member Name]
        P.O. Box 40600
        Olympia, WA 98504-0600

        [Senate Member Name]
        P.O. Box 40482
        Olympia, WA 98504-0482

      Washington State Legislative Agencies.

    There are several Legislative Agencies. Below are links to two relevant agencies.

    • Washington Institute for Mental Illness Research and Training. In collaboration with the Mental Health Division and other organizations, the Institute is at the forefront of implementing and evaluating new treatment models for persons with serious and persistent mental illness.

    • Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee. The Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee (JLARC) carries out oversight, review and evaluation of state-funded programs and activities on behalf of the Legislature and the citizens of Washington State. This joint, bipartisan committee consists of eight senators and eight representatives, equally divided between the two major political parties. Its statutory authority is established in RCW 44.28.

    • Washington Institute for Public Policy. The Institute's mission is to carry out practical, non-partisan research—at legislative direction—on issues of importance to Washington State. The Institute conducts research activities using its own policy analysts and economists, specialists from universities, and consultants. Institute staff work closely with legislators, legislative and state agency staff, and experts in the field to ensure that studies answer relevant policy questions. Fiscal and administrative services for the Institute are provided by The Evergreen State College.

      Thank You for Stopping By!

        - Best wishes, Ron Sterling M.D. (Seattle, Washington, USA)

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