SHB 1682
As of March 13, 2023
Title: An act relating to the Washington auto theft prevention authority account.
Brief Description: Concerning the Washington auto theft prevention authority account.
Sponsors: House Committee on Appropriations (originally sponsored by Representatives Maycumber, Chapman, Barnard, Reeves, Riccelli, Bateman, Springer, Volz, Chambers, Mosbrucker, Robertson, Leavitt, Jacobsen, Christian and Rule).
Brief History: Passed House: 3/7/23, 94-1.
Committee Activity: Ways & Means: 3/13/23.
Brief Summary of Bill
  • Removes state confinement costs as an allowable use of the Washington Auto Theft Prevention Account funds.
Staff: Sarian Scott (786-7729)

Washington Auto Theft Prevention Account.  The Washington Auto Theft Prevention Account (Account) is an appropriated account created in the custody of the state treasurer. All receipts from gifts, grants, bequests, devises, or other funds from public and private sources—specifically traffic infraction surcharges—to support its activities must be deposited into the Account.
Expenditures from the Account may be used only for activities relating to motor vehicle theft, including education, prevention, law enforcement, investigation, prosecution, and confinement costs.
Washington Auto Theft Prevention Authority.  The Washington Auto Theft Prevention Authority (WATPA) was established within the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs to review and make recommendations to the Legislature and the Governor regarding motor vehicle theft crimes in Washington.
The WATPA must allocate moneys in the Account to public agencies for establishing, maintaining, and supporting programs designed to prevent motor vehicle theft, including providing financial support for the following:

  • to prosecution agencies to increase the effectiveness of motor vehicle theft prosecution;
  • to a unit of local government or a team consisting of units of local governments to increase the effectiveness of motor vehicle theft enforcement;
  • for the procurement of equipment and technologies for use by law enforcement agencies for enforcing motor vehicle theft laws; and
  • for programs designed to educate and assist the public in the prevention of motor vehicle theft.

Traffic Infractions.  In addition to any other penalties imposed, a person found to have committed a traffic infraction must be assessed a $10 surcharge per infraction. Revenue from this fee must be remitted to the state treasurer for deposit in the Account. Traffic surcharges are the primary source of revenue for the WAPTA. 

Summary of Bill:

State confinement costs are removed as allowable uses of the Washington Auto Theft Prevention Account. There is a null and void clause.

Appropriation: None.
Fiscal Note: Available.  New fiscal note requested on March 8, 2023.
Creates Committee/Commission/Task Force that includes Legislative members: No.
Effective Date: Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.
Staff Summary of Public Testimony:

PRO: We support combatting auto theft. Auto theft increased nationally by about 12.3%. In Washington, auto theft increased 31.6%. We are struggling. Washington State is now ranked the third worst state in the nation for auto theft. Senator Wilson's bill passed unanimously, and we understood the Department of Corrections has already been receiving in their underlying caseload funding from you from the 2007 bill. We were surprised to see the fiscal note on this bill, SHB 1628. The text of Senator Wilson's bill might also fit nicely into this bill. The Court's control the Auto Theft Prevention Account. The Auto Theft Prevention Account Authority is a subdivision of the Washington Association of Sheriff's & Police Chiefs. The Auto Theft Prevention Account Authority gives out grants for task forces, and the funding has consistently gone down since 2007. Funds are primarily for enforcement grants, prevention grants, the club, and auto theft prevention campaigns.

Persons Testifying: PRO: James McMahan, WA Assoc Sheriffs & Police Chiefs.
Persons Signed In To Testify But Not Testifying: No one.