MRSC Insight Blog
Posts for Steve Gross
It was a mixed bag for utility legislation in 2023. There are some new obligations for utilities, but certain non-project and project actions are now categorically exempt from SEPA review.
The 2023 legislative session saw a number of bills that specifically impact counties, including amending the process to appoint members to a salary commission in noncharter counties and removing the deadline by which counties may choose to join the Voluntary Stewardship Program.
Unlike the requirement to accommodate service animals (and sometimes support animals), local government agencies do not have to allow pets in the office. Some people love the idea, others loathe it. Whether you allow them or not, you should have a clear pet policy.
During the COVID-19 pandemic local governments operated under a series of emergency orders, some of which drew legal challenges. As these proclamations have ended, now is a good time to look at what happened to the challenges, and how (or if) they affected emergency powers.
While state law addresses ethics for some kinds of municipal officers, these and other laws help all employees understand how to conduct day-to-day business while avoiding conflicts of interest.
A Stay Out of Drug Area (SODA) ordinance is one way a local government can restrict the sales or use of illegal drugs in public places. However, SODA ordinances must be well-designed to avoid legal scrutiny and to ensure they do not disproportionally affect certain populations.
All libraries, whether they are independent districts or part of a city or town, should have both a sound collection management policy and an understanding of how to implement that policy in a way that furthers the library’s mission while reducing legal risks.
A recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling supports the ability of a governing body to censure one of its members if that person's action obstructs or hinders the body's ability to perform its day-to-day functions.
ESHB 2076 creates uniform statewide regulations for Transportation Network Companies to ensure vehicles are safe and fares are transparent, but also to establish minimum per mile, minute, and trip rates for company drivers and provide them with benefits like paid sick time.
MRSC has gotten a lot of questions from local governments about HB 1329 and how it impacts remote public meetings, public comment, adjournment, and more. This blog addresses some common concerns.
In 2020, Washington counties were offered the chance to adopt a C-PACER program that would encourage capital improvements for commercial properties in order to increase water and energy efficiency. This blog follows up on program implementation two years later.
Pandemic-related restrictions on public meetings and the processing of public records will no longer be in effect this coming June, per the newly released Proclamation 20-28.16.
Beginning this year, law enforcement agencies in Washington now must meet new recording requirements for certain interrogations as well as new retention requirements for digital records.
The U.S. Supreme Court has temporarily stopped the implementation and enforcement of a federal rule calling for large U.S. employers to require employees be vaccinated against COVID-19. Following the decision, OSHA withdrew the proposed rule.
The upcoming holiday season offers municipalities a great opportunity to tie their Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts into holiday observances so that everyone feels part of the celebration.
Local governments have many questions involving how, when, and in what context public facilities can be used during campaign season. This blog covers some common questions, from political buttons and signs to what (exactly) counts as a public facility.
With the expiration of Governor Inslee's moratorium on utility shutoff drawing near, local governments are wondering what comes next.
This blog offers an overview of two recent bills that affect county officers: ESHB 1326 and EHB 1271.
This blog looks at best practices on setting public meeting agendas for cities, towns, counties, or special purpose districts.
Part Two of this series on local ethics codes reviews items in a code that help when dealing with a possible violation.