SHB 1549

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.

As of March 24, 2011

Title: An act relating to notification to schools regarding the release of certain offenders.

Brief Description: Requiring notification to schools regarding the release of certain offenders.

Sponsors: House Committee on Early Learning & Human Services (originally sponsored by Representatives Dahlquist, Armstrong, Hurst, Pearson, Hope, Moscoso, Dammeier, Anderson, Wilcox, McCune, Kelley and Smith; by request of Superintendent of Public Instruction).

Brief History: Passed House: 2/28/11, 96-0.

Committee Activity: Human Services & Corrections: 3/15/11.


Staff: Shani Bauer (786-7468)

Background: A person who is required to register as a sex or kidnapping offender must give notice to the county sheriff within three days prior to arriving at a school or institution of higher education to attend classes, prior to starting work at an institution of higher education, and after any termination of enrollment or employment at a school or institution. The sheriff is in turn required to notify the school's principal or institution's department of public safety. If the student is a risk level II or III, the principal must provide information about the student to every teacher of the student and any other personnel who, in the judgment of the principal, supervises the student or for security purposes, should be aware of the student's record. If the student is a risk level I, information may only be released to personnel who, in the judgment of the principal, should be aware of the student's record.

When a juvenile who was adjudicated of a violent offense, a sex offense, or stalking will be released from the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration (JRA), JRA must notify the chief of police, the sheriff, any private schools, and the school district board of directors in the vicinity in which the juvenile intends to reside. Notice must be provided at least 30 days prior to the juvenile's release.

Summary of Bill: No later than 30 days prior to a youth's release, the Department of Corrections (DOC) must notify the school district board of directors of the district in which the offender last attended school when the youth (1) is 21 years of age or younger; and (2) has been found to have committed a violent offense, sex offense, or stalking.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Available.

Committee/Commission/Task Force Created: No.

Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.

Staff Summary of Public Testimony: PRO: A similar law is currently in place for offenders released from JRA. This bill ties up a loose end in requiring the same sort of notice for offenders being released from DOC that are eligible to go to school. This will allow the school to ensure the safety of other students and protect the rights of the individual student.

Persons Testifying: PRO: Representative Dahlquist, prime sponsor; Andrea Cobb, Office of Superintendant of Public Instruction; Marcia Fromhold, Vancouver Evergreen School District.