Weinstein’s Housing Liability Bill Passes the Senate

Substitute Senate Bill 6385 passed the Senate today on a vote of 27-20 with 2 excused. The AIA/WA and other groups representing engineers, landscape architects, surveyors, contractors, and developers are on record as opposing the bill.

Sponsored by trial lawyer Senator Brian Weinstein (D-41, Mercer Island), this bill would create huge new liabilities for architects and contractors without addressing any of the problems in the residential construction market. SSB 6385 will not improve the quality of construction. It will only create new lawsuits around construction.

The AIA/WA agrees that there does need to be action taken to improve the quality of residential construction. And, steps are being taken in the legislature.

First, last year the legislature created the Joint Legislative Task Force on Underground Economy in the Construction Industry. The task force is comprised of representatives of the labor, contractors, legislators and state agencies. Out of the task force have come two bills that are being considered this session. SB 6732 implements many of the recommendations of the task force. SB 6731 clarifies statutes affecting independent contractors.

Next, Representative Mark Ericks (D-1, Bothell) is leading a bi-partisan task force to specifically investigate the problems with quality in residential construction. This task force is meeting with proponents of SSB 6385, contractor, architects and others to find the root cause of quality problems and develop solutions to address the problems.

In summary, the AIA/WA urged lawmakers to vote “no” on SSB 6385, which will only creates more lawsuits. Instead, we urged them to support the work of the Underground Economy task force and the task force being led by Rep. Ericks to find real solutions to construction problems.

AIA/WA will work aggressively in the House to defeat the bill there.

No comments:

Post a Comment