SB 5457
C 280 L 23
Synopsis as Enacted
Brief Description: Implementing growth management task force legislative recommendations regarding small cities.
Sponsors: Senators Short, Lovelett, Kuderer and Shewmake.
Senate Committee on Local Government, Land Use & Tribal Affairs
House Committee on Local Government

Growth Management Act. The Growth Management Act (GMA) is the comprehensive land use planning framework for counties and cities in Washington. The GMA establishes land-use designation and environmental protection requirements for all Washington counties and cities. The GMA also establishes a significantly wider array of planning duties for 28 counties, and the cities within those counties, that are obligated to satisfy all planning requirements of the GMA. These jurisdictions are sometimes said to be fully planning under the GMA.
The GMA directs fully planning jurisdictions to adopt internally consistent comprehensive land use plans. Comprehensive plans are implemented through locally adopted development regulations, and both the plans and the local regulations are subject to review and revision requirements prescribed in the GMA. Comprehensive plans must be reviewed and, if necessary, revised every ten years to ensure that it complies with the GMA. When developing their comprehensive plans, counties and cities must consider various goals set forth in statute.


A city or town located in a fully planning county may opt out of a full review and revision of its comprehensive plan update if they it meets the following criteria:

  • has a population fewer than 500;
  • is not located within ten miles of a city with a population over 100,000;
  • experienced a population growth rate of fewer than 10 percent in the preceding ten years; and
  • has provided the Department of Commerce (Commerce) with notice of its intent to participate in a partial review and revision of its comprehensive plan.

Commerce shall review the population growth rate for a city or town participating in the partial review at least three years prior to when the update is due and notify cities or towns of their its eligibility.
A city or town that opts out of a full review and revision of its comprehensive plan must update its critical areas regulations and its capital facilities element and its transportation element as part of its scheduled update.

Votes on Final Passage:
Senate 48 0
House 97 0

Ninety days after adjournment of session in which bill is passed.July 23, 2023