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MRSC Insight Blog


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Are Your Public Meetings Truly “Open” to the Public?

Are Your Public Meetings Truly “Open” to the Public?

January 27, 2020 by Sarah Doar
Category:

This blog post considers how local governments could make public meetings even more accessible to the public. 

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 ​The Annual Financial Report for 2019

​The Annual Financial Report for 2019

January 23, 2020 by Toni Nelson
Category: Financial Reporting

This blog post highlights changes to the State Auditor’s Office Annual Financial Report for ‘cash-basis’ accounting and reporting entities.

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Knowing Your Roles: City and Town Governments Edition

Knowing Your Roles: City and Town Governments Edition

January 21, 2020 by MRSC Insight
Category: Administrative and Elected Officials

This blog post looks at the roles and responsibilities of city and town mayors, managers, and councilmembers, and the conflicts that can sometimes arise between these different offices.

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Finding Success in Using Community Resources to Deliver Value as a Newly Elected Official

Finding Success in Using Community Resources to Deliver Value as a Newly Elected Official

January 16, 2020 by Mike Bailey
Category: Administrative and Elected Officials

This blog article looks at the role of an elected official as policymaker, one who brings value to the community by overseeing use of its financial resources. 

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Legal Consultant Paul Sullivan Retires

Legal Consultant Paul Sullivan Retires

January 14, 2020 by Paul Sullivan
Category:

Legal Consultant Paul Sullivan is retiring after more than 30 years at MRSC. 

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Understanding When It’s Over: Administrative Procedures and the PRA

Understanding When It’s Over: Administrative Procedures and the PRA

January 13, 2020 by Oskar Rey
Category: Court Decisions and AGO Opinions , Public Records Act

This blog post summarizes Kilduff v. San Juan County and suggests best practices for agency administrative procedures concerning public records searches. 

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Elected Officials Guide — What’s Personal and What’s Public?

Elected Officials Guide — What’s Personal and What’s Public?

January 9, 2020 by Laura Crandall
Category: Open Public Meetings Act , Administrative and Elected Officials , Public Records Act

This blog covers questions about the use of social media and cell phones with regards to privacy and public records and focuses on their use from the perspective of an elected official.

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Court Upholds King County Ordinance Requiring Franchise Compensation for Use of Right-of-Way

Court Upholds King County Ordinance Requiring Franchise Compensation for Use of Right-of-Way

January 7, 2020 by Jill Dvorkin
Category: Court Decisions and AGO Opinions , Water Utilities , Utilities

Can a county charge a fee for allowing a utility to use the county’s right-of-way for placement of utility infrastructure? The Washington Supreme Court ruled recently that it can. 

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MRSC Launches New Website Search

MRSC Launches New Website Search

January 6, 2020 by Tracy Burrows
Category:

We've updated our website search system. The new features make it easier to find information, providing more relevant results and allowing you to quickly narrow your search. 

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<em>Yim I</em> and <em>Yim II</em> Clarify Washington Regulatory Takings and Substantive Due Process Law

Yim I and Yim II Clarify Washington Regulatory Takings and Substantive Due Process Law

January 2, 2020 by Roger Wynne
Category: Court Decisions and AGO Opinions , Land Use Administration

This blog post addresses Yim I and Yim II,  two recent Washington Supreme Court rulings that clarify the state's regulatory takings and substantive due process jurisprudence.

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More Employees Will Soon Be Eligible for Overtime Pay

More Employees Will Soon Be Eligible for Overtime Pay

December 30, 2019 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Compensation

There have been changes at both the federal and the state level to determine when workers are eligible for overtime pay. As a result, employers may find many more employees eligible for overtime once these changes go into effect. 

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Supreme Court Rules Individual State Legislators Are Subject to the PRA

Supreme Court Rules Individual State Legislators Are Subject to the PRA

December 24, 2019 by Flannary Collins
Category: Court Decisions and AGO Opinions , Public Records Act

This blog post provides an overview of the recent Washington Supreme Court ruling addressing whether individual state legislators are subject to the Public Records Act.

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Promising Practices for Local Governments: Combating Elder Neglect, Short-Term Vacation Rental Compliance, Reducing Recidivism

Promising Practices for Local Governments: Combating Elder Neglect, Short-Term Vacation Rental Compliance, Reducing Recidivism

December 19, 2019 by Byron Katsuyama
Category: Human Services , Courts, Criminal Justice and Corrections , Tourism

This post highlights promising practices for combating elder neglect, increasing compliance with short-term vacation rental regulations, and transitioning newly released inmates back into the community.

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New Court Case About Mandatory Subjects of Collective Bargaining

New Court Case About Mandatory Subjects of Collective Bargaining

December 16, 2019 by Linda Gallagher
Category: Court Decisions and AGO Opinions , Collective Bargaining

A recent ruling by the Washington Court of Appeals, Division I, looks at whether shift staffing may be considered a mandatory or permissive subject of collective bargaining.

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Micro-Units: Another Tool in your Affordable Housing Toolbelt

Micro-Units: Another Tool in your Affordable Housing Toolbelt

December 12, 2019 by Sarah Bollard
Category: Housing

This blog post provides an overview of micro-units, or small apartments between 125 to 400 square feet in size, their benefits, and some issues to consider when developing micro-housing plans. 

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New Developments in PRA Land

New Developments in PRA Land

December 9, 2019 by Flannary Collins
Category: Court Decisions and AGO Opinions , Public Records Act

This blog post provides an overview of two recent Washington State Supreme Court cases that involved the Public Records Act and offers some key takeaways for local governments to consider. 

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The Oath of Office for Local Elected Officials

The Oath of Office for Local Elected Officials

December 6, 2019 by Sarah Doar
Category: Administrative and Elected Officials

This blog post covers the basics of the oath of office for local elected officials, such as when it can be taken, who can administer it, and how it should be worded. 

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Changing Forecasts for Transportation Revenues and Other Impacts of I-976

Changing Forecasts for Transportation Revenues and Other Impacts of I-976

December 5, 2019 by Toni Nelson
Category: Revenues , Transportation Finance

This blog post looks at the impact the passage of I-976 will have on transportation revenues, the state's multimodal account, and transportation benefit districts. 

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How Can Local Governments Celebrate the Holidays?

How Can Local Governments Celebrate the Holidays?

November 22, 2019 by Paul Sullivan
Category: Governance

Many local governments may be considering how to celebrate the holiday season through holiday decorations, nativity scenes, or Christmas cards. Can local governments do this? As this blog post suggests, some caution is warranted before proceeding.

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Community Paramedicine: Filling Gaps in Healthcare

Community Paramedicine: Filling Gaps in Healthcare

November 18, 2019 by Leah LaCivita
Category: Emergency Medical Services

This blog post looks at community paramedicine, a healthcare approach that uses emergency medical technicians to deliver basic medical services to patients, often in their own home.

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