OLYMPIA - A bill that would set limits on what the legislative branch needs to release under public disclosure laws will not be moving forward, just weeks after being introduced.
Democratic Senator Jamie Pedersen, the bill’s main sponsor, told the Herald of Everett on Monday that because of newspaper executives and media lobbyists blasted the legislation during a public hearing last week, the bill would not move forward.
Senate Bill 5784 would have made lawmakers from Washington State included in the Public Records Act, but several restrictions would apply.
The bill would have also extended protection to individuals submitting whistleblower allegations to legislators.
Lawmakers have argued that they are not subject to the same disclosure rules that apply to other elected officials in the state.
Several news organizations disagreed and filed lawsuits in 2017, claiming the lawmakers were breaking the law by not releasing documents.
A Thurston County Superior Court Judge ultimately ruled that while the Legislature, the House and Senate were not subject to the law, the office of individual elected officials were.
The ruling has been appealed, and is awaiting arguments before the Washington State Supreme Court.