House passes Klicker legislation to increase affordable housing supply

The Washington State House of Representative overwhelmingly approved legislation from Rep. Mark Klicker, Tuesday, that would increase affordable housing options in the state.

“This bipartisan legislation is a great example of what we can accomplish when we work together on real solutions,” said Klicker, R-Walla Walla. “I've heard from numerous developers whose projects get stalled for months while they wait for design approval on buildings that meet every other regulation.  If this bill passes, it will remove this obstacle for developers.”

House Bill 1293 would streamline regulations and the permitting process for housing developments in urban growth areas. The bill would require cities and counties planning under the Growth Management Act to apply clear and objective design review standards to the exterior of new development.

The bill, which passed 94-3, would also require the review process to be expedited by limiting the number of public hearings during the design review phase. It would also integrate the consolidated review and design task to streamline and ease the overall approval process.

HB 1293 would also provide exemptions for residential projects within an Urban Growth Area from some environmental considerations if certain conditions are met, further streamlining the process.

“We can't solve the housing shortage in Washington overnight, but when we pass commonsense legislation like this, we definitely move the needle in the right direction,” said Klicker. “We need to remove the red tape and obstacles that slow the building industry. Cutting unnecessary and burdensome regulations will streamline the permitting process.”

The bill now heads to the Senate for further consideration.


Washington State House Republican Communications