Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



State Government & Tribal Affairs Committee

HB 1234

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

Brief Description: Addressing law enforcement crime prevention efforts regarding security alarm systems and crime watch programs for residential and commercial locations.

Sponsors: Representatives Moscoso, Hope, Klippert, Lytton, Johnson, Rivers, Jinkins, Ladenburg, Ryu, Reykdal, Fitzgibbon and Maxwell.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Exempts from disclosure information collected by law enforcement agencies regarding local security alarm systems and vacation crime watch programs.

Hearing Date: 1/31/11

Staff: Marsha Reilly (786-7135).


The Public Records Act (PRA) requires that all state and local government agencies make all public records available for public inspection and copying unless they fall within certain statutory exemptions. The provisions requiring public records disclosure must be interpreted liberally and the exemptions narrowly in order to effectuate a general policy favoring disclosure.

Summary of Bill:

Information regarding local security alarm system ordinances or programs and vacation crime watch programs collected by law enforcement agencies is exempt from disclosure. However, the exemption does not prohibit the legal owner of a residence or business from accessing information pertinent to his or her residence or business.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Not requested.

Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.