The Associated Press
OLYMPIA — Democrats failed in their effort to bypass Republican leadership and bring a bill related to local school levies to the Senate floor.
Senate Democrats had hoped for a beneficial ruling Friday from Democratic Lt. Gov. Cyrus Habib, the presiding officer of the chamber, that would have allowed them to change the chamber rules so they could pull the bill out of committee and put it on the floor calendar.
When that ruling didn’t go in their favor, they tried another procedural path to get the bill to the floor, but one of their members had left the Capitol and they didn’t have enough people to succeed.
The bill in question delays a deadline for a reduction in the amount of money school districts can collect through local property tax levies. A measure had passed the Democratic House on a 62-35 vote Monday, and Senate Democrats had been calling for a vote in that chamber. Republicans included the levy deadline delay as part of an education funding proposal they released Friday.
The Senate Republican majority, which includes a Democrat who caucuses with them, is currently down to 24 members because one of their senators resigned this week to take a job with President Donald Trump’s administration.
Another Republican senator has also accepted a temporary position with Trump and is currently in Washington, D.C., leaving Republicans with only 23 members available to vote this week.