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Transportation & Public Works Update (2-28-17)

The legislature’s fiscal bill cutoff was Friday, February 2oth, so several bills have been moved to the dead bill list.

Several infrastructure financing bills did not make it past cutoff.  The Senate is focused on passing SB 5033 (Keiser), which gives authority to the Public Works Board to develop a bond-pooling program.  This bond-pooling program requires a constitutional amendment to put it into effect.  The House is focused on passing HB 1677 (Peterson), which expands the Public Works Board by adding four legislators and restructures the revolving loan program and adds asset management provisions.  Funding for the Public Works Board is necessary for loans or grants and will be part of the final budget negotiations.

The HPA bill, SHB 1428 (Blake), was not reported out of the House Appropriations Committee before the cutoff, but it will likely come back as “NTIB” – necessary to implement the budget.  WDFW is continuing to reach out to stakeholders to reach a consensus on key issues.  Unless and until stakeholders can find agreement, the future of the bill is uncertain.

SSB 5228 (Honeyford), initially established HPA jurisdiction at the ordinary high water line, but the substitute bill has made it into a study bill that creates a joint legislative task force to review the issues and make recommendations to the legislature.  The bill passed out of the Senate on a 28/21 vote and now goes to the House.

WSAC has been actively opposing SSB 5788 (Brown), which limits notice requirements for contract change orders and claims.  The bill is the latest attempt by the Association of General Contractors to undo the Supreme Court Mike M. Johnson decision in 2003.  The bill would open the door for contract claims to be submitted beyond contract claim notice procedures.  The bill has passed to the Rules Committee awaiting floor action.

Other bills that have died include HB 1156 (MacEwen), expanding ATV use on county roads, HB 1307 (Shea) allowing dual speed limits, and HB 1367 (MacEwen), maintenance of private roads.

More information on bills being tracked can be found here.  Please contact me if you have any questions on any legislation.