The adoption period of new model codes begins with the availability of the new editions every three years and ends with formal adoption of the building code as amended by the Council. The supplements are not considered new editions and are not adopted by the state. The code and amendments cannot take effect until they sit through a legislative session.
Statewide code change proposals for the new code are accepted until March 1. See WAC 51-04-020 for more specific information on submission dates and the adoption period. Proposals received after this deadline will be considered the following year. All proposed statewide amendments need to be submitted in writing, on the form provided.
At their March meeting, the Council reviews the statewide code change proposals received and forwards them to the applicable Technical Advisory Group (TAG). The Technical Advisory Groups review the proposed statewide amendments, as well as any changes in the new editions of the model codes. In June, they report their findings and recommendations to the Council. Proposed statewide amendments recommended for public hearing as authorized by the Council are filed with the Code Reviser and published in the Washington State Register. This filing includes a summary of the proposed rules, the complete text of the proposed changes, public hearing dates and locations, and any economic impact statements required by law. Click here to see a flow chart of the Code Reviser process.
Public hearings are typically held in September and/or October in both Eastern and Western Washington. After the public hearings, the Council holds a worksession to review testimony and receive clarification on any issue as they feel necessary. The Council must make the final decision on adoption by December 1. All state amendments to the codes must receive a majority of eight votes of the Council to be adopted. The amendments cannot take effect before the end of the regular legislative session in the next year. Typically, the Council uses a July 1 effective date for new codes.
Click here for a flow chart of the Council Process.
Please click here for updated information regarding the 2012 code adoption.