SENATE BILL 5260
State of Washington
2019 Regular Session
BySenators Zeiger, Hunt, Hobbs, Takko, Bailey, and Conway
Read first time 01/16/19.Referred to Committee on State Government, Tribal Relations & Elections.
AN ACT Relating to powers to waive statutory obligations or limitations during a state of emergency in order to cope with the emergency; amending RCW 43.06.220
; and creating a new section.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. (1)(a) The legislature finds that the governor has broad authority to proclaim a state of emergency in any area of the state under RCW 43.06.010(12), and to exercise emergency powers during the emergency. These emergency powers have historically included the ability under RCW 43.06.220(1)(h) to temporarily waive or suspend statutory obligations by prohibiting compliance with statutory provisions during a proclaimed state of emergency when the governor reasonably believed it would help preserve and maintain life, health, property, or the public peace.
(b) The legislature further finds that, in response to issues arising from flooding events in 2007, RCW 43.06.220
(2) was amended by chapter 181, Laws of 2008, to explicitly authorize the governor to temporarily waive or suspend a set of specifically identified statutes. This amendment has become problematic for subsequent emergency response activities because it has inadvertently narrowed the governor's ability to waive or suspend statutes under RCW 43.06.220
(1)(h) by issuing orders temporarily prohibiting compliance with statutes not expressly identified in RCW 43.06.220
(2) The legislature intends to allow the governor to immediately respond during a proclaimed state of emergency by temporarily waiving or suspending other statutory obligations or limitations prescribing the procedures for conduct of state business, or the orders, rules, or regulations of any state agency, if strict compliance would in any way prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with the emergency.
and 2008 c 181 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) The governor after proclaiming a state of emergency and prior to terminating such, may, in the area described by the proclamation issue an order prohibiting:
(a) Any person being on the public streets, or in the public parks, or at any other public place during the hours declared by the governor to be a period of curfew;
(b) Any number of persons, as designated by the governor, from assembling or gathering on the public streets, parks, or other open areas of this state, either public or private;
(c) The manufacture, transfer, use, possession or transportation of a molotov cocktail or any other device, instrument or object designed to explode or produce uncontained combustion;
(d) The transporting, possessing or using of gasoline, kerosene, or combustible, flammable, or explosive liquids or materials in a glass or uncapped container of any kind except in connection with the normal operation of motor vehicles, normal home use or legitimate commercial use;
(e) ((The possession of firearms or any other deadly weapon by a person (other than a law enforcement officer) in a place other than that person's place of residence or business;
(f))) The sale, purchase or dispensing of alcoholic beverages;
(((g)))(f) The sale, purchase or dispensing of other commodities or goods, as he or she reasonably believes should be prohibited to help preserve and maintain life, health, property or the public peace;
(((h)))(g) The use of certain streets, highways or public ways by the public; and
(((i)))(h) Such other activities as he or she reasonably believes should be prohibited to help preserve and maintain life, health, property or the public peace.
(2) The governor after proclaiming a state of emergency and prior to terminating such may, in the area described by the proclamation, issue an order or orders concerning waiver or suspension of statutory obligations or limitations in any or all of the following areas as further specified and limited by chapter 181, Laws of 2008:
(a) Liability for participation in interlocal agreements;
(b) Inspection fees owed to the department of labor and industries;
(c) Application of the family emergency assistance program;
(d) Regulations, tariffs, and notice requirements under the jurisdiction of the utilities and transportation commission;
(e) Application of tax due dates and penalties relating to collection of taxes; ((and))
(f) Permits for industrial, business, or medical uses of alcohol; and
(g) Such other statutory and regulatory obligations or limitations prescribing the procedures for conduct of state business, or the orders, rules, or regulations of any state agency if strict compliance with the provision of any statute, order, rule, or regulation would in any way prevent, hinder, or delay necessary action in coping with the emergency, unless (i) authority to waive or suspend a specific statutory or regulatory obligation or limitation has been expressly granted to another statewide elected official, (ii) the waiver or suspension would conflict with federal requirements that are a prescribed condition to the allocation of federal funds to the state, or (iii) the waiver or suspension would conflict with the rights, under the First Amendment, of freedom of speech or of the people to peaceably assemble. The governor shall give as much notice as practical to legislative leadership and impacted local governments when issuing orders under this subsection (2)(g).
(3) In imposing the restrictions provided for by RCW 43.06.010
, and 43.06.200
, the governor may impose them for such times, upon such conditions, with such exceptions and in such areas of this state he or she from time to time deems necessary.
(4) No order or orders concerning waiver or suspension of statutory obligations or limitations under subsection (2) of this section may continue for longer than thirty days unless extended by the legislature through concurrent resolution. If the legislature is not in session, the waiver or suspension of statutory obligations or limitations may be extended in writing by the leadership of the senate and the house of representatives until the legislature can extend the waiver or suspension by concurrent resolution. For purposes of this section, "leadership of the senate and the house of representatives" means the majority leaders of the senate and the house of representatives and the minority leaders of the senate and the house of representatives.
(5) Any person willfully violating any provision of an order issued by the governor under this section is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.
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