WA legislator didn’t like process, but voted ‘yes’ on public records exemption bill

SB 6617 passed with bipartisan support last week, as the vast majority of lawmakers voted to hide their old records from the public.

Even as he defended his vote on exempting state lawmakers from Washington’s Public Records Act, Rep. Gerry Pollet, D-Seattle, said he did not agree with how it was rushed through Olympia last week.

“I frankly do not understand decisions to unveil something and pass it in 48 hours,” Pollet said on KING 5’s The Sound Podcast. “I’ve tried to encourage my fellow legislators to think about how this looks because I think the process was awful, doing this without any hearings.”

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SB 6617 passed with bipartisan support last week, as the vast majority of lawmakers voted to hide their old records from the public.

A superior court judge found Washington’s legislature in violation with the state’s own public disclosure laws. KING 5 was among the media organizations that filed a lawsuit against the legislature and won in court, but the new fast-tracked bill passed with little debate tries to undermine that ruling.

Gov. Jay Inslee can sign the bill into law, veto it, or let it go into effect without his signature.