Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



Appropriations Committee

HB 1293

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 distribution of monetary penalties to local courts and state agencies paid for failure to comply with discover pass requirements.

Sponsors: Representatives Tharinger, Blake, Kretz and Mosbrucker.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Requires counties with a population of less than 100,000 to retain 25 percent of the penalty money received from Discover Pass, vehicle access pass, or day-use permit infractions, rather than transferring all of the penalty money to the state.

Hearing Date: 1/28/19

Staff: Dan Jones (786-7118).


The Discover Pass is an annual pass that allows a vehicle to access state recreation lands owned by the State Parks and Recreation Commission (State Parks), the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW), or the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The cost of a Discover Pass is $30. The cost of a day-use permit, which serves the same function as the annual pass but is only valid for one calendar day, is $10. Revenue from both passes is initially deposited in the Recreation Access Pass Account, and is then distributed to the three agencies as follows: 84 percent to State Parks (State Parks Renewal and Stewardship Account), 8 percent to DFW (State Wildlife Account), and 8 percent to DNR (Park Land Trust Revolving Fund).


A vehicle access pass is a pass issued during the purchase of a qualifying hunting or fishing license. A vehicle access pass may be displayed instead of a Discover Pass or day-use permit on DFW recreation lands. A number of other exemptions exist to the Discover Pass or day-use permit requirement, such as camping in a state park or driving on roads operated by the DNR or the DFW.


The penalty for failing to display a valid pass on state recreation lands is $99. This penalty must be reduced to $59 if the individual provides proof of purchase of a Discover Pass, day-use permit, or vehicle access pass to the court within 15 days of the violation, regardless of which date the pass is purchased. Counties must transfer revenue received from this penalty to the State Treasurer for deposit into the Recreation Access Pass Account.

Summary of Bill:

Counties with a population of less than 100,000 must transfer 75 percent of revenue from state recreation access pass infraction penalties to the state for deposit into the Recreation Access Pass Account, rather than 100 percent. The other 25 percent is retained by the county.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Preliminary fiscal note available.

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