On December 9, 2009, the Governor's Office received a recommendation from the Joint Administrative Rules Committee to suspend adoption and implementation of the rules adopted by the State building Code Council on November 20, 2009. The Governor declined to suspend these amendments.
DATE: January 8, 2010
to the GovernorJanuary 8, 2010
The Honorable Bob Hasegawa, Chair
The Honorable Joel Kretz, Vice-Chair
Joint Administrative Rules Review Committee
Post Office Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504-0600
Dear Representative Hasegawa and Representative Kretz:
On December 9, 2009, you sent me a letter on behalf of the Joint Administrative Rules Review Committee pursuant to RCW 34.05.640(3)(a). This letter recommends that I suspend the amendments to the State Energy Code recently approved by the Building Code Council. The only authority provided to the governor under this law is to suspend an existing rule until ninety days after the expiration of the next regular legislative session. Any suspension would expire by law on June 9, 2010. The State Energy Code amendments are not effective until July 1, 2010. Therefore, any suspension under RCW 34.05.640(3)(a) would have no effect.
Your letter notes the Committee's strong support of thoughtful and informed progress toward improved energy efficiency in our buildings, wherever practicable. The Climate Action Team recommended that the 2009 Building Code Council revisions to the State Energy Code achieve a 30 percent reduction in new building energy use. Thereafter, the Building Code Council conducted an intensive process involving numerous stakeholders, evaluated the costs and benefits of proposed changes, and made changes that took these factors into account. The amendments the Building Code Council determined would best serve the citizens of the state will generally achieve a 15 percent reduction in new building energy use. I am pleased with this incremental progress toward energy efficiency. As the 2009 Legislature found, energy efficiency "will save money, create good local jobs, enhance energy security, reduce pollution that causes global warming, and speed economic recovery while reducing the need to invest in costly new generation."
Respect for the Legislature's oversight function over agencies and programs will require the Building Code Council to provide more focused information for your review before the amendments become effective. The upcoming legislative session will provide an excellent opportunity for the Building Code Council to provide any information you need to evaluate the value and impacts of the amendments. I looking forward to working with you and other legislators as we move forward on this issue and other issues of interest to the citizens of the State of Washington.
Christine O. Gregoire
cc: Peter DeVries, Chair, SBCC
Jon Napier, Vice-Chair, SBCC
Tim Nogler, Managing Director, SBCC
Sandra Adix, SBCC, AAG
Reviser's note: The typographical error in the above material occurred in the copy filed by the Office of the Governor and appears in the Register pursuant to the requirements of RCW 34.08.040.