WSR 00-19-053

PREPROPOSAL STATEMENT OF INQUIRY

DEPARTMENT OF

SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES
(The Special Commitment Center)

[ Filed September 15, 2000, 3:42 p.m. ]

Subject of Possible Rule Making: Chapter 388-680 WAC (formerly chapter 275-155 WAC) and possible new chapters pertaining to (1) oversight and program standards, (2) treatment planning for court-committed program residents, and (3) records retention. Certain existing rules may require revision later as may be determined.

Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: Chapter 44, Laws of 2000, chapter 71.09 RCW.

Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: These rules are needed in order to comply with legislative mandate in chapter 44, Laws of 2000 generally, and to establish continuing standards of program quality for sex offender care, control, and treatment, to establish a rule-governed mechanism for external program oversight similar to that of the state hospitals, and to further formalize requirements pertaining to treatment planning and records retention.

Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: No other federal or state agencies regulate this subject. The Special Commitment Center (SCC) is, however, currently situated within the Department of Corrections McNeil Island Correction Center (MICC) and has a presence at the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW) in Purdy. The Special Commitment Center will, at a future date, locate its own facility outside the boundaries of MICC, but on land leased by the Department of Corrections. For this reason, the Department of Corrections will be consulted and informed at key steps in the process, both through the regular mechanisms of hearing, the "stakeholder" review, and in regular interdepartmental management meetings.

The Special Commitment Center is also currently under an injunction through the 9th Circuit Court which as an interest in this process. The court receives a monthly report from the SCC which shall include documents relating to the rule-writing process. The special master in this case will be kept informed periodically through copies of documents, by telephone conference, and by electronic mail. Progress in rule development will likely also be presented at a hearing before the court in early December.

Process for Developing New Rule: The department invites the interested public to review and provide input on the draft language of this WAC. Draft material and information about how to participate are available by contacting the DSHS representative identified below.

Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Lee Mosley, Policy Analyst, The Special Commitment Center, Building 24, WSH, P.O. Box 88450, Steilacoom, WA 98388-0646, (253) 879-7917, fax (253) 761-7529, leem@dshs.wa.gov.

September 14, 2000

Marie Myerchin-Redifer, Manager

Rules and Policies Assistance Unit

Washington State Code Reviser's Office