Archives: Legal Developments—Washington

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Washington Subcontractors Can Seek Bond for Early Release of Retainage

Governor Jay Inslee recently signed into law Washington House Bill 1538 which authorizes subcontractors on public projects to request the prime contractor submit to the public owner a bond to release its portion of the retainage before the public project is complete. The bond needs to be in a form acceptable to the public body and … Continue Reading

That Was Fast! 2017 Washington Legislature Proposes Bills Responding to the Hirst Decision

Last week, my colleagues wrote about the Whatcom County v. Hirst decision by the Washington Supreme Court. As a consequence of Hirst, if public water is not available to serve a development, a county must independently verify that water from wells is available before it issues permits, even for single-family or small-development construction that, in the … Continue Reading

Washington Supreme Court Strikes a Blow to Vested Rights

In a blog post dated February 17, 2016, we wrote about a decision of the Washington Court of Appeals in Snohomish County v. Pollution Control Hearings Board favorable to developers. At issue in the case was the Washington State Department of Ecology’s rule that required application of new stormwater regulations to all development proposals submitted … Continue Reading

Washington Court of Appeals Signals Change in Notice Requirements Under Construction Contracts

Division III acknowledges hairline cracks in Mike M. Johnson rule. “Close enough” only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades, and nowhere is that more true than when Washington courts are interpreting notice and claim procedures in construction contracts. As a result of the Washington State Supreme Court’s 2003 decision in Mike M. Johnson, Inc. v. Spokane … Continue Reading

Washington State Sets Carbon Dioxide Emission Reduction Requirements for Major Sources

Today the Washington State Department of Ecology adopted a new rule to limit carbon dioxide emissions from major sources. Beginning in 2017, entities that emit more than 100,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide per year must reduce their emissions by 1.7 percent each year. Entities with lower emissions will be phased in over two decades. … Continue Reading

In Vino Perseverance: Winery Launch Faces Barriers to Entry

From The Ground Up contributor LeAnne Bremer recently had an article published in the Vancouver Business Journal titled “In Vino Perseverance: Winery Launch Faces Barriers to Entry.” The article discusses land use and permitting issues encountered by the founders of Windy Hills Winery in Clark County, Washington. From either his robust laugh or his aromatic cigar, Dave Kelly’s … Continue Reading

Creative Way to Deal With Easement Dispute Fails

In the recent Washington Court of Appeals case of Buchheit v. Geiger, property owners tried to prevent a neighbor from crossing over their lakeside lot with an antiharassment order.  The neighbor began using the lakeside lot without the owners’ permission, by attaching a floating dock to the lot, storing personal items on it, and walking … Continue Reading

A Washington Court of Appeals Reaffirms State’s Strong Vested Rights Doctrine

The Washington Department of Ecology issued the 2013-2018 Phase I Municipal Stormwater Permit, which required certain counties and cities to adopt local regulations for controlling stormwater sewer systems for new development, redevelopment, and construction activities by June 30, 2015.  A key provision of the permit stated that the new regulations must apply to all development … Continue Reading

Leasing Restrictions in Condominiums Are Still “Use” Restrictions

We wrote about the Filmore v. Unit Owners Association of Centre Pointe Condominium case in a prior blog post, when the Washington Court of Appeals issued its decision in the case. The court of appeals ruled that, based on the language of the Washington Condominium Act, any amendment to restrict or remove a restriction on leasing condominium units … Continue Reading
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