70.05.030  <<  70.05.035 >>   70.05.040

Home rule charter countiesLocal board of health.

(1) Except as provided in subsection (2) of this section, for home rule charter counties, the county legislative authority shall establish a local board of health and may prescribe the membership and selection process for the board. The membership of the local board of health must also include the members selected under (a) and (e) of this subsection.
(a) The remaining board members must be persons who are not elected officials and must be selected from the following categories consistent with the requirements of this section and the rules adopted by the state board of health under RCW 43.20.300:
(i) Public health, health care facilities, and providers. This category consists of persons practicing or employed in the county who are:
(A) Medical ethicists;
(B) Epidemiologists;
(C) Experienced in environmental public health, such as a registered sanitarian;
(D) Community health workers;
(E) Holders of master's degrees or higher in public health or the equivalent;
(F) Employees of a hospital located in the county; or
(G) Any of the following providers holding an active or retired license in good standing under Title 18 RCW:
(I) Physicians or osteopathic physicians;
(II) Advanced registered nurse practitioners;
(III) Physician assistants or osteopathic physician assistants;
(IV) Registered nurses;
(V) Dentists;
(VI) Naturopaths; or
(VII) Pharmacists;
(ii) Consumers of public health. This category consists of county residents who have self-identified as having faced significant health inequities or as having lived experiences with public health-related programs such as: The special supplemental nutrition program for women, infants, and children; the supplemental nutrition program; home visiting; or treatment services. It is strongly encouraged that individuals from historically marginalized and underrepresented communities are given preference. These individuals may not be elected officials and may not have any fiduciary obligation to a health facility or other health agency, and may not have a material financial interest in the rendering of health services; and
(iii) Other community stakeholders. This category consists of persons representing the following types of organizations located in the county:
(A) Community-based organizations or nonprofits that work with populations experiencing health inequities in the county;
(B) Active, reserve, or retired armed services members;
(C) The business community; or
(D) The environmental public health regulated community.
(b) The board members selected under (a) of this subsection must be approved by a majority vote of the board of county commissioners.
(c) If the number of board members selected under (a) of this subsection is evenly divisible by three, there must be an equal number of members selected from each of the three categories. If there are one or two members over the nearest multiple of three, those members may be selected from any of the three categories. However, if the board of health demonstrates that it attempted to recruit members from all three categories and was unable to do so, the board may select members only from the other two categories.
(d) There may be no more than one member selected under (a) of this subsection from one type of background or position.
(e) If a federally recognized Indian tribe holds reservation, trust lands, or has usual and accustomed areas within the county, or if a 501(c)(3) organization registered in Washington that serves American Indian and Alaska Native people and provides services within the county, the board of health must include a tribal representative selected by the American Indian health commission.
(f) The county legislative authority may appoint to the board of health elected officials from cities and towns and persons other than elected officials as members so long as the city and county elected officials do not constitute a majority of the total membership of the board.
(g) Except as provided in (a) and (e) of this subsection, the county legislative authority shall specify the appointment, term, and compensation or reimbursement of expenses.
(h) The jurisdiction of the local board of health shall be coextensive with the boundaries of the county.
(i) The local health officer, as described in RCW 70.05.050, shall be appointed by the official designated under the provisions of the county charter. The same official designated under the provisions of the county charter may appoint an administrative officer, as described in RCW 70.05.045.
(j) The number of members selected under (a) and (e) of this subsection must equal the number of city and county elected officials on the board of health.
(k) At the first meeting of a district board of health the members shall elect a chair to serve for a period of one year.
(l) Any decision by the board of health related to the setting or modification of permit, licensing, and application fees may only be determined by the city and county elected officials on the board.
(2) A local board of health comprised solely of elected officials may retain this composition if the local health jurisdiction had a public health advisory committee or board with its own bylaws established on January 1, 2021. By January 1, 2022, the public health advisory committee or board must meet the requirements established in RCW 70.46.140 for community health advisory boards. Any future changes to local board of health composition must meet the requirements of subsection (1) of this section.


Effective date2021 c 205 §§ 3-6: See note following RCW 70.05.030.
Finding2021 c 205: See note following RCW 43.70.675.
Effective datesContingent effective dates1995 c 43: See note following RCW 70.05.030.
Severability1995 c 43: See note following RCW 43.70.570.
FindingsIntent1993 c 492: See notes following RCW 43.20.050.
Short titleSavingsReservation of legislative powerEffective dates1993 c 492: See RCW 43.72.910 through 43.72.915.
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