Governor Gregoire Announces Boards/Commissions Cuts/Changes

Governor Gregoire recently issued recommendations for changes to the many boards and commissions in Washington state. (Follow the link for the Governor's press release and lists of affected agencies.)

She eliminated 17 boards via executive order and has proposed another 78 be eliminated by legislative action. She is also proposing the consolidation, movement and merger of some boards and sub-cabinet agencies.

For the most part there is very little impact on the architectural profession by these proposals. The licensing board, for instance, would be unaffected. And, many of those being eliminated likley will not be missed by the profession or the people of Washington. However, there are a few proposals that merit a closer look by the AIA|WA.

Architects serve on the following boards being proposed for elimination:

The Capital Projects Advisory Review Board (CPARB)
The Capitol Campus Design Advisory Committee

In addition the AIA has had an interest in the following board being proposed to be eliminated:

Home Inspector Advisory Licensing Board

CPARB is a board that the AIA|WA helped to create and has protected against elimination in the past. It serves a vital regulatory and oversight function regarding the use of alternative public works procurement processes by state and local government agencies. Norm Strong, FAIA, is the AIA’s current representative on CPARB. It is not clear if the Project Review Committee, which reports to CPARB, would also be eliminated.

The Capitol Campus Design Advisory Committee, “Advises the State Capitol Committee and the director of General Administration to review programs, planning, design, and landscaping of state capitol facilities and grounds and to make recommendations that will contribute to the attainment of architectural, aesthetic, functional, and environmental excellence in design and maintenance of capitol facilities on campus and located in neighboring communities.” The law requires that the appointees be: two architects; one landscape architect; and an urban planner. The AIA members serving on the committee are Paul Blanton, FAIA, of Spokane and Alex Rolluda, AIA, of Seattle and Dennis Haskell, FAIA, of Seattle.

The Home Inspector board was created only recently to oversee the development and implementation of the home inspector licensing program. AIA|WA supported the creation of the licensing program.

The Governor is also proposing to create an environmental and land use hearings office by reducing and combining the Growth Management Hearings Boards and the Environmental Hearings Office

Finally, Gregoire proposes to reorganize the Department of Commerce (formerly CTED). Currently, the State Building Code Council is housed at Commerce. Gregoire is proposing to move it to the Department of Labor & Industries. John Cochran, AIA, of Seattle, serves as AIA's main representative on the board and we have several members serving on the Council and on technical advisory groups (too many to succinctly list).

There is some logic to this move. Related programs, such as elevator and electrical inspection, are housed at L&I. But, L&I is an agency that has a very political culture and has been problematic in a number of other areas. For instance, we’ve received complaints about the lack of responsiveness of the elevator inspectors.

What are your thoughts on the elimination proposals? Are they needed reforms. Or, are there problems with the proposals. Comment below.

1 comment:

  1. This is really interesting. I've certainly heard of the ones you've mentioned. But, some on the full list are completely unknown. Could we support saving some and eliminating others? And, there are a few more that I personally would add to the list. It seems like balance is the key. Let's make sure the important ones stay and the unneeded ones go. Thanks for the update. I totally missed this in the regular news.