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Governor to appoint AGC, BIAW nominees in important legal victory

Governor to appoint AGC, BIAW nominees in important legal victoryAGC and BIAW recently announced a significant legal victory in their fight to secure representation on the Washington State Building Code Council.

The two groups have agreed to resolve a legal dispute with Gov. Jay Inslee over his handling of appointments last summer to the Building Code Council.

Under the settlement, the two members of the Building Code Council the governor appointed will resign. Then the governor must replace them with nominees from BIAW and AGC. The governor’s office must also pay BIAW $70,000 in connection with a separate Public Records Act lawsuit.

“This is an important victory for the construction industry,” said AGC Executive Vice President David D’Hondt. “The Building Code Council makes important decision impacting contractors’ day-to-day work, and it is only right that the industry have a seat at the table.”

In two separate lawsuits filed last fall, the groups alleged the governor violated the law in selecting appointees to positions representing the residential and commercial construction industries and in responding to a related public records request.

The law reserves one of the two general contracting positions for residential construction and another for commercial construction. It also requires the governor to appoint only people who have been nominated by trade associations representing those specific industries unless no names are put forth by the trade associations. This ensures that trade associations impacted by the code have a role in changes made to the code and the timing of the implementation.

Under the terms outlined in the settlement, the two members appointed to the council by the governor last year to fill the residential/multi-family and general/industrial general construction positions will resign but continue serving on the council as full voting members until the governor finalizes the new appointments.

BIAW and AGC must each nominate three candidates to replace those positions. However, the associations may not nominate anyone who has already served two terms on the council. Within five weeks of receiving the associations’ new lists of nominees, the governor will appoint a nominee from each of the new lists and each nominee will serve until Jan. 5, 2025. At that point, each will be eligible for reappointment.

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