Chapter 43.117 RCW


Legislative declaration.
Commission established.
MembershipTermsVacanciesTravel expensesQuorumExecutive director.
OfficersRules and regulationsMeetings.
Duties of commissionState agencies to give assistance.
Promotion of equal opportunity and benefits.
HearingsInformation to be furnished to commission.
Gifts, grants and endowmentsReceipt and expenditure.
Asian Pacific American heritage month.
Severability1974 ex.s. c 140.
Ethnic and cultural diversityDevelopment of curriculum for understanding: RCW 2.56.030 and 43.101.280.

Legislative declaration.

The legislature declares that the public policy of this state is to insure equal opportunity for all of its citizens. The legislature finds that Asian Pacific Americans have unique and special problems. It is the purpose of this chapter to improve the well-being of Asian Pacific Americans by insuring their access to participation in the fields of government, business, education, and other areas. The legislature is particularly concerned with the plight of those Asian Pacific Americans who, for economic, linguistic, or cultural reasons, find themselves disadvantaged or isolated from American society and the benefits of equal opportunity. The legislature aims to help these and all Asian Pacific Americans achieve full equality and inclusion in American society. The legislature further finds that it is necessary to aid Asian Pacific Americans in obtaining governmental services in order to promote the health, safety, and welfare of all the residents of this state. Therefore the legislature deems it necessary to create a commission to carry out the purposes of this chapter.
[2000 c 236 § 1; 1995 c 67 § 2; 1983 c 119 § 1; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 1.]
Effective date2000 c 236: "This act takes effect April 30, 2000." [2000 c 236 § 4.]
Effective date1983 c 119: "This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, and safety, the support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and shall take effect June 30, 1983." [1983 c 119 § 5.]


As used in this chapter unless the context indicates otherwise:
(1) "Asian Pacific Americans" include persons of Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Samoan, Guamanian, Thai, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian, and other South East Asian, South Asian, and Pacific Island ancestry.
(2) "Commission" means the Washington state commission on Asian Pacific American affairs in the office of the governor.
[1995 c 67 § 3; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 2.]

Commission established.

There is established a Washington state commission on Asian Pacific American affairs in the office of the governor. The now existing Asian-American advisory council shall become the commission upon enactment of this chapter. The council may transfer all office equipment, including files and records to the commission.
[1995 c 67 § 4; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 3.]

Membership—Terms—Vacancies—Travel expenses—Quorum—Executive director.

(1) The commission shall consist of twelve members appointed by the governor. In making such appointments, the governor shall give due consideration to recommendations submitted to him or her by the commission. The governor may also consider nominations of members made by the various Asian-American organizations in the state. The governor shall consider nominations for membership based upon maintaining a balanced distribution of Asian-ethnic, geographic, sex, age, and occupational representation, where practicable.
(2) Appointments shall be for three years except in case of a vacancy, in which event appointment shall be only for the remainder of the unexpired term for which the vacancy occurs. Vacancies shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointments.
(3) Members shall receive reimbursement for travel expenses incurred in the performance of their duties in accordance with RCW 43.03.050 and 43.03.060 as now existing or hereafter amended.
(4) Seven members shall constitute a quorum for the purpose of conducting business.
(5) The governor shall appoint an executive director based upon recommendations made by the council.
[2009 c 549 § 5171; 1982 c 68 § 1; 1981 c 338 § 16; 1975-'76 2nd ex.s. c 34 § 131; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 4.]
Effective dateSeverability1975-'76 2nd ex.s. c 34: See notes following RCW 2.08.115.

Officers—Rules and regulations—Meetings.

The commission shall:
(1) Elect one of its members to serve as chair; and also such other officers as necessary to form an executive committee;
(2) Adopt rules and regulations pursuant to chapter 34.05 RCW;
(3) Meet at the call of the chair or the call of a majority of its members, but in no case less often than once during any three month period;
(4) Be authorized to appoint such citizen task force as it deems appropriate.
[2009 c 549 § 5172; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 5.]


The executive director shall employ a staff who shall be state employees pursuant to Title 41 RCW and prescribe their duties as may be necessary to implement the purposes of this chapter.
[1974 ex.s. c 140 § 6.]

Duties of commission—State agencies to give assistance.

(1) The commission shall examine and define issues pertaining to the rights and needs of Asian Pacific Americans, and make recommendations to the governor and state agencies with respect to desirable changes in program and law.
(2) The commission shall advise such state government agencies on the development and implementation of comprehensive and coordinated policies, plans, and programs focusing on the special problems and needs of Asian Pacific Americans.
(3) The commission shall coordinate and assist with statewide celebrations during the fourth week of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month that recognize the contributions to the state by Asian Pacific Americans in the arts, sciences, commerce, and education.
(4) The commission shall coordinate and assist educational institutions, public entities, and private organizations with celebrations of Korean-American day that recognize the contributions to the state by Korean-Americans in the arts, sciences, commerce, and education.
(5) Each state department and agency shall provide appropriate and reasonable assistance to the commission as needed in order that the commission may carry out the purposes of this chapter.
[2007 c 19 § 3; 2000 c 236 § 3; 1995 c 67 § 5; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 7.]
Findings2007 c 19: See note following RCW 1.16.050.
Effective date2000 c 236: See note following RCW 43.117.010.

Promotion of equal opportunity and benefits.

In carrying out its duties, the commission may establish such relationships with local governments and private industry as may be needed to promote equal opportunity and benefits to Asian Pacific Americans in government, education, economic development, employment, and services.
[1995 c 67 § 6; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 8.]

Hearings—Information to be furnished to commission.

(1) The commission may for the purpose of carrying out the purposes of this chapter hold such public hearings, sit and act at such times and places, take such testimony, and receive such evidence, as the commission may deem advisable. The commission may administer oaths or affirmations to witnesses appearing before it. At least five members of the commission must be present to conduct a hearing.
(2) The commission may secure directly from any department or agency of the state information necessary to enable it to carry out the purposes of this chapter. Upon request of the chair of the commission, the head of such department or agency shall furnish such information to the commission.
[2009 c 549 § 5173; 1974 ex.s. c 140 § 9.]

Gifts, grants and endowments—Receipt and expenditure.

The commission shall have authority to receive such gifts, grants, and endowments from public or private sources as may be made from time to time in trust or otherwise for the use and benefit of the purposes of the commission and to expend the same or any income therefrom according to the terms of said gifts, grants, or endowments.
[1974 ex.s. c 140 § 10.]

Asian Pacific American heritage month.

The legislature declares that:
(1) May of each year will be known as Asian Pacific American heritage month;
(2) The fourth week of May is designated as a time for people of this state to celebrate the contributions to the state by Asian Pacific Americans in the arts, sciences, commerce, and education; and
(3) Educational institutions, public entities, and private organizations are encouraged to designate time for appropriate activities in commemoration of the lives, history, achievements, and contributions of Asian Pacific Americans.
[2000 c 236 § 2.]
Effective date2000 c 236: See note following RCW 43.117.010.

Severability—1974 ex.s. c 140.

If any provision of this 1974 act, or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act, or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected.
[1974 ex.s. c 140 § 11.]