Washington State
House of Representatives
Office of Program Research
State Government & Tribal Relations Committee
HB 1876
Brief Description: Concerning confidential fisheries information collected by other states and maintaining that confidentiality under the public records act.
Sponsors: Representatives Springer, McEntire, Reeves and Thai; by request of Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Brief Summary of Bill
  • Exempts from public disclosure certain confidential fishery-related information collected by other states.
Hearing Date: 1/17/24
Staff: Connor Schiff (786-7093).

The Public Records Act (PRA) requires state and local agencies to make their written records available to the public for inspection and copying upon request, unless the information fits into one of the various specific exemptions in the PRA or is otherwise provided in law.  The stated policy of the PRA favors disclosure and requires narrow application of the listed exemptions.  


The PRA exempts from public disclosure certain sensitive fish and wildlife data that is collected and shared by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW ) for research and management purposes.  Sensitive fish and wildlife data generally includes location data or nesting sites of endangered or threatened wildlife as designated by the Fish and Wildlife Commission or the WDFW, or other location data that could compromise the viability of a certain fish or wildlife population.  Sensitive fish and wildlife data does not include reported predatory wildlife interactions.  Release of sensitive fish and wildlife data is subject to a confidentiality agreement, except for the release of sensitive fish and wildlife data to the owner, lessee, or right-of-way or easement holder of private land who initially provided the data.

Summary of Bill:

Fishery-related information that is collected by another state and is regarded as confidential under the laws of that state is exempt from public disclosure under the Public Records Act.

Appropriation: None.
Fiscal Note: Not requested.
Effective Date: The bill contains multiple effective dates. Please see the bill.