Washington State

House of Representatives

Office of Program Research



Local Government Committee

SB 5036

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 compensation of commissioners of certain metropolitan park districts.

Sponsors: Senators Conway and Takko.

Brief Summary of Bill

  • Increases the maximum amount authorized for metropolitan park district commissioners' compensation to $128 daily and $12,288 annually.

  • Increases the maximum annual compensation for Metro Parks Tacoma commissioners to $24,576.

  • Changes the date that the Office of Financial Management is required to make inflation-based adjustments to the dollar thresholds from 2008 to 2023.

Hearing Date: 3/15/19

Staff: Yvonne Walker (786-7841).


Metropolitan Park Districts.

In Washington a special purpose district (SPD) is a limited purpose local government separate from a city, town, or county government. Special purpose districts provide an array of services and facilities that are otherwise not available from city or county governments. A metropolitan park district (MPD) is a type of SPD created for the control, management, improvement, maintenance, or acquisition of parks, parkways, boulevards, and recreational facilities. An MPD may include territory located in portions or in all of one or more cities or counties.

Metropolitan Park District Board.

Most powers of SPDs are vested in a board of district commissioners, board of district trustees, or board of district directors. The officers of an MPD include five elected park commissioners who serve up to six-year terms. The commissioners are elected simultaneously when voters are deciding whether an MPD should be formed.

Park commissioners may be compensated at a maximum rate of $90 per day and up to a maximum rate of $8,640 per year. The Office of Financial Management (OFM) is required to adjust the compensation amounts for inflation every five years, beginning July 1, 2008. In 2018 the OFM adjusted the amounts to a maximum of $128 per day with an annual compensation limit of $12,288. The adjustments are published in the Washington State Register but are not reflected in statute. The next adjustment is slated to occur on July 1, 2023.

Summary of Bill:

The daily maximum compensation amounts for MPD commissioners is increased from:

The maximum annual compensation is $24,576 for any MPD district with facilities including an aquarium, a wildlife park, and a zoo, accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency. The date from which OFM must make inflation adjustments to the compensation thresholds is changed from July 1, 2008 to July 1, 2023.

Appropriation: None.

Fiscal Note: Requested on March 8, 2019.

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