Unable to escape visions of derailed oil trains burning ferociously out of control, Washington lawmakers knew it would be difficult for them to return home from Olympia this year without a new law to improve rail safety. When Gov. Jay Inslee on Thursday signed into law the legislation that resulted (HB 1449), it was far from the bill he proposed with the backing of an extraordinarily broad coalition including environmentalists, state and local governments, tribes and even river pilots. Gone was a proposal to better protect Puget Sound from oil spills, including steps to improve safety on barges that transport oil. Also missing were Inslee’s attempt to tax oil carried in pipelines, just like oil transported over the water, and a doubling of that tax rate to 10 cents per 42-gallon barrel of oil brought into the state. Inslee would have targeted the new taxes to shore up the state’s struggling oil-spill-safety budget.