SUBSTITUTE HOUSE BILL 1274







                        52nd Legislature

                      1991 Regular Session



Passed by the House March 20, 1991

  Yeas 98   Nays 0




Speaker of the

       House of Representatives


Passed by the Senate April 11, 1991

  Yeas 41   Nays 1




President of the Senate



Approved Place Style On Codes above, and Style Off Codes below.









Governor of the State of Washington



I, Alan Thompson, Chief Clerk of the House of Representatives of the State of Washington, do hereby certify that the attached is SUBSTITUTE HOUSE BILL 1274 as passed by the House of Representatives and the Senate on the dates hereon set forth.




                                      Chief Clerk











                        Secretary of State   

                       State of Washington  




                            SUBSTITUTE HOUSE BILL 1274



                     Passed Legislature - 1991 Regular Session



State of Washington              52nd Legislature             1991 Regular Session


By House Committee on Transportation (originally sponsored by Representatives R. Fisher and Schmidt).


Read first time February 22, 1991.  Adjusting provisions relating to street utilities.

     AN ACT Relating to street utilities; reenacting and amending RCW 82.80.040, 82.80.050, and 82.80.060; reenacting RCW 82.80.070; and declaring an emergency.




     Sec. 1.  RCW 82.80.040 and 1990 c 42 s 209 are each reenacted and amended to read as follows:

     A city or town may elect by action of its legislative authority to own, construct, maintain, operate, and preserve all or any described portion of its streets as a separate enterprise and facility, known as a street utility, and from time to time add other existing or new streets to that street utility, with full power to own, construct, maintain, operate, and preserve such streets.  The legislative authority of the city or town may include as a part of the street utility, street lighting, traffic control devices, sidewalks, curbs, gutters, parking facilities, and drainage facilities.  The legislative authority of the city or town is the governing body of the street utility.


     Sec. 2.  RCW 82.80.050 and 1990 c 42 s 210 are each reenacted and amended to read as follows:

     A city or town electing to own, construct, maintain, operate, and preserve its streets as a separate street utility may levy periodic charges for the use or availability of the streets in ((order to meet)) a total annual amount of up to fifty percent of the actual costs for maintenance, operation, and preservation of facilities under the jurisdiction of the street utility.  The rates charged for the use must be uniform for the same class of service and all ((classes of service)) business and residential properties must be subject to the utility charge.  Charges imposed on businesses shall be measured solely by the number of employees and shall not exceed the equivalent of two dollars per full-time equivalent employee per month.  Charges imposed against owners or occupants of residential property shall not exceed two dollars per month per housing unit as defined in RCW 35.95.040.  ((Charges against owners of property that is exempt from property tax under chapter 84.36 RCW or leasehold tax under chapter 82.29A RCW shall be based solely on the number of employees of the tax exempt body associated with the property.  Provided that in recognition of the benefits accruing to the city or town from the service provided by such tax exempt entities, the charges authorized herein shall be paid by the city or town.))  Charges authorized in this section shall not be imposed against owners of property:  (1) Exempt under RCW 84.36.010; (2) exempt from the leasehold tax under chapter 82.29A RCW; or (3) used for nonprofit or sectarian purposes, which if said property were owned by such organization would qualify for exemption under chapter 84.36 RCW.  The charges shall not be computed on the basis of an ad valorem charge on the underlying real property and improvements.  This section shall not be used as a basis to directly or indirectly charge transportation impact fees or mitigation fees of any kind against new development.  A city or town may contract with any other utility or local government to provide for billing and collection of the street utility charges.

     In classifying service furnished within the general categories of business and residential, the city or town legislative authority may in its discretion consider any or all of the following factors:  The difference in cost of service to the various users or traffic generators; location of the various users or traffic generators within the city or town; the difference in cost of maintenance, operation, construction, repair, and replacement of the various parts of the enterprise and facility; the different character of the service furnished to various users or traffic generators within the city or town; the size and quality of the street service furnished; the time of use or traffic generation; capital contributions made to the facility  including but not limited to special assessments; and any other matters that present a reasonable difference as a ground for distinction, or the entire category of business or residential may be established as a single class.  The city or town may reduce or exempt charges on residential properties to the extent of their occupancy by low-income senior citizens and low-income disabled citizens as provided in RCW 74.38.070(1), or to the extent of their occupancy by the needy or infirm.

     The charges shall be charges against the property and the use thereof and shall become liens and be enforced in the same manner as rates and charges for the use of systems of sewerage under chapter 35.67 RCW.

     Any city or town ordinance or resolution creating a street utility must contain a provision granting to any business a credit against any street utility charge the full amount of any commuter or employer tax paid for transportation purposes by that business.


     Sec. 3.  RCW 82.80.060 and 1990 c 42 s 211 are each reenacted and amended to read as follows:

     The city or town electing to own, construct, maintain, operate, and preserve its streets and related facilities as a utility under this chapter may finance the construction, operation, maintenance, and preservation through local improvement districts, utility local improvement districts, or with proceeds from general obligation bonds and revenue bonds payable from the charges issued in accordance with chapter 35.41 ((or)), 35.92, or 39.46 RCW, or any combination thereof.  The city or town may use, in addition to the charges authorized by RCW 82.80.050, funds from general taxation, money received from the federal, state, or other local governments, and other funds made available to it.  The proceeds of the charges authorized by RCW 82.80.050 shall be used strictly for transportation purposes in accordance with this chapter and RCW 82.80.070.


     Sec. 4.  RCW 82.80.070 and 1990 c 42 s 212 are each reenacted to read as follows:

     (1) The proceeds collected pursuant to the exercise of the local option authority of RCW 82.80.010, 82.80.020, 82.80.030, and 82.80.050 (hereafter called "local option transportation revenues") shall be used for transportation purposes only, including but not limited to the following:  The operation and preservation of roads, streets, and other transportation improvements; new construction, reconstruction, and expansion of city streets, county roads, and state highways and other transportation improvements; development and implementation of public transportation and high-capacity transit improvements and programs; and planning, design, and acquisition of right of way and sites for such transportation purposes.  The proceeds collected from excise taxes on the sale, distribution, or use of motor vehicle fuel and special fuel under RCW 82.80.010 shall be used exclusively for "highway purposes" as that term is construed in Article II, section 40 of the state Constitution.

     (2) The local option transportation revenues shall be expended for transportation uses consistent with the adopted transportation and land use plans of the jurisdiction expending the funds and consistent with any applicable and adopted regional transportation plan for metropolitan planning areas.

     (3) Each local government with a population greater than eight thousand that levies or expends local option transportation funds, is also required to develop and adopt a specific transportation program that contains the following elements:

     (a) The program shall identify the geographic boundaries of the entire area or areas within which local option transportation revenues will be levied and expended.

     (b) The program shall be based on an adopted transportation plan for the geographic areas covered and shall identify the proposed operation and construction of transportation improvements and services in the designated plan area intended to be funded in whole or in part by local option transportation revenues and shall identify the annual costs applicable to the program.

     (c) The program shall indicate how the local transportation plan is coordinated with applicable transportation plans for the region and for adjacent jurisdictions.

     (d) The program shall include at least a six-year funding plan, updated annually, identifying the specific public and private sources and amounts of revenue necessary to fund the program.  The program shall include a proposed schedule for construction of projects and expenditure of revenues.  The funding plan shall consider the additional local tax revenue estimated to be generated by new development within the plan area if all or a portion of the additional revenue is proposed to be earmarked as future appropriations for transportation improvements in the program.

     (4) Local governments with a population greater than eight thousand exercising the authority for local option transportation funds shall periodically review and update their transportation program to ensure that it is consistent with applicable local and regional transportation and land use plans and within the means of estimated public and private revenue available.

     (5) In the case of expenditure for new or expanded transportation facilities, improvements, and services, priorities in the use of local option transportation revenues shall be identified in the transportation program and expenditures shall be made based upon the following criteria, which are stated in descending order of weight to be attributed:

     (a) First, the project serves a multijurisdictional function;

     (b) Second, it is necessitated by existing or reasonably foreseeable congestion;

     (c) Third, it has the greatest person-carrying capacity;

     (d) Fourth, it is partially funded by other government funds, such as from the state transportation improvement board, or by private sector contributions, such as those from the local transportation act, chapter 39.92 RCW; and

     (e) Fifth, it meets such other criteria as the local government determines is appropriate.

     (6) It is the intent of the legislature that as a condition of levying, receiving, and expending local option transportation revenues, no local government agency use the revenues to replace, divert, or loan any revenues currently being used for transportation purposes to nontransportation purposes.  The association of Washington cities and the Washington state association of counties, in consultation with the legislative transportation committee, shall study the issue of nondiversion and make recommendations to the legislative transportation committee for language implementing the intent of this section by December 1, 1990.

     (7) Local governments are encouraged to enter into interlocal agreements to jointly develop and adopt with other local governments the transportation programs required by this section for the purpose of accomplishing regional transportation planning and development.

     (8) Local governments may use all or a part of the local option transportation revenues for the amortization of local government general obligation and revenue bonds issued for transportation purposes consistent with the requirements of this section.


     NEW SECTION.  Sec. 5.      This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and shall take effect immediately.