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August 2014


Court Decision Clarifies Vested Rights Doctrine as Entirely Statutory

Court Decision Clarifies Vested Rights Doctrine as Entirely Statutory

August 27, 2014 by Bob Meinig
Category: Vested Rights

In Potala Village Kirkland, LLC v. City of Kirkland (August 25, 2014), Division I of the state court of appeals issued a significant decision regarding the vested rights doctrine. The court held that the doctrine is entirely statutory, with the statutory doctrine replacing, rather than supplementing, the common law (court-made) vested rights doctrine. In the first sentence of its...

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Airbnb: Regulation of Internet-Based Businesses

Airbnb: Regulation of Internet-Based Businesses

August 25, 2014 by Carol Tobin
Category: Licensing and Regulation , Tourism , Business Licenses and Taxes

It’s always something. Cities and counties have been grappling recently with the regulation of rideshare services such as Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar, that have been competing for business with taxis and limousine services.

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Using Lodging Taxes for Staff Support of LTAC (Updated)

Using Lodging Taxes for Staff Support of LTAC (Updated)

August 20, 2014 by Toni Nelson
Category: Lodging Tax (Hotel-Motel Tax)

Can you use lodging tax revenues to pay for staff support of the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC)? It’s a good question that we’ve been getting lately. After conferring with the State Auditor’s Office, we’ve concluded that this...

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MRSC Welcomes a New Web Writer

MRSC Welcomes a New Web Writer

August 14, 2014 by Steve Hawley
Category:

It’s an exciting time to be at MRSC! We’re undergoing a lot of changes - we’ve got a new logo, some new faces, and we’re working on an extensive website redesign to make our material more user-friendly. I began working at MRSC last month as...

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Filling a Vacancy in a City or Town Council

Filling a Vacancy in a City or Town Council

August 13, 2014 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Legislative Body

With 281 cities and towns in Washington and with city and town councils typically consisting of five to seven members, there are bound to be vacancies in council positions on a fairly regular basis. Vacancies typically occur due the death, resignation, or loss of residency. If there is a vacancy, a replacement needs to appointed. This post addresses the requirements and process for doing...

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Block Grants Celebrate the “Big 4-0” and Other Updates from HUD

Block Grants Celebrate the “Big 4-0” and Other Updates from HUD

August 11, 2014 by Lynn Nordby
Category: Revenues , Housing

I recently received an email update from the Northwest Regional Office of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that noted some interesting facts and...

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Waiving Competitive Bidding Requirements in the Event of an Emergency

Waiving Competitive Bidding Requirements in the Event of an Emergency

August 7, 2014 by Pat Mason
Category: Purchasing and Contracting

In view of the recent Oso landslide and numerous and destructive wildfires in our state, I thought it would be timely to provide a brief review of the rules in state law relating to waiving competitive bidding requirements in emergency situations, when a local government needs to act quickly.  These rules are not new and are not complicated.
Basically, there is a general exemption from...

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Getting an Accurate and Complete Economic Picture for Rural Counties

Getting an Accurate and Complete Economic Picture for Rural Counties

August 1, 2014 by Jim McEntire
Category: Planning , Council-Commission Advisor

It can be challenging to assemble a comprehensive view of county economic conditions due to the many different sources of county-level economic data. I have the curse of a curious mind, from long before the beginning of my service in local government. First as a Port Commissioner, and then as a County Commissioner, I began a personal project to compile demographic and economic statistics for my...

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Capital Project Financial Management - Seeking the "Universal Translator"

Capital Project Financial Management - Seeking the "Universal Translator"

August 1, 2014 by Tracey Dunlap
Category: Finance , Finance Advisor

Have you ever had one of the following experiences?
  • You ask for the financial status of a capital project and you get different answers from Finance and the Project Manager.
  • A capital project that has been on track appears to suddenly look like it will be significantly over budget.
  • Additional funds need to be appropriated for a project that was completed within budget...

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