House of Representatives
Office of Program Research
Housing, Community Development & Veterans Committee
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: Concerning the creation of a work group to study and make recommendations on natural disaster mitigation and resiliency activities.
Sponsors: Representatives Reeves, Stanford, Barkis, Slatter and Ryu; by request of Insurance Commissioner.
Hearing Date: 1/16/19
Staff: Serena Dolly (786-7150).
Many states, including Washington, have embarked on efforts to mitigate loss from future disasters, including earthquakes, floods, and fires. For instance, in 2012, Washington's Emergency Management Council's Seismic Safety Committee issued a report and recommendations on improving statewide recovery after an earthquake. In 2016, the Governor created the Resilient Washington Subcabinet to help the state better prepare for natural disasters. Other states have created public entities, such as the California Earthquake Authority, to assist in the recovery process following a natural disaster.
Summary of Bill:
A work group is created to study current natural disaster and resiliency activities being implemented in Washington, other states, and at the federal level. The work group will also review information on uptake in Washington for disaster-related insurance.
The work group will consist of 19 members, comprised of the following:
the Insurance Commissioner, or a designee, as the chair of the work group;
one member from each of the four legislative caucuses;
a representative from the Governor's Resilient Washington Subcabinet;
a representative from the Washington State Association of Counties;
a representative from the Association of Washington Cities;
a representative from the state Building Code Council;
the Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources or designee;
the Director of the Washington State Military Department or designee;
the Superintendent of Public Instruction, or a designee;
the Director of the Department of Ecology, or a designee;
the Director of the Department of Commerce, or a designee;
a representative from the Washington Association of Building Officials;
two representatives from the property and casualty insurance industry;
a representative from public utility districts; and
a representative selected by the Washington State Commission on African-American Affairs, the Washington State Commission on Hispanic Affairs, the Governor's Office of Indian Affairs, and the Washington State Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs.
The work group must review disaster mitigation and resiliency activities being implemented by federal agencies, other states, and public and private entities in Washington. In addition, the work group must review information on the use of disaster-related insurance, how other states are coordinating disaster mitigation and resiliency work, and the work of entities such as the California Earthquake Authority.
The work group may add other participants for specific topic discussions or subcommittees. The work group must submit a preliminary report of recommendations by November 1, 2019, and a final report by December 1, 2020. The report must include recommendations on:
whether Washington should create an ongoing disaster resiliency program;
the activities the program should engage in;
how the program should coordinate with state agencies and other entities; and
how the program should be funded.
Fiscal Note: Requested on January 9, 2019.
Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.