49.70.165  <<  49.70.170 >>   49.70.175

Worker and community right to know fundEmployer assessmentsAuditsAppeal of assessment.

(1) The worker and community right to know fund is hereby established in the custody of the state treasurer. The department shall deposit all moneys received under this chapter in the fund. Moneys in the fund may be spent only for the purposes of this chapter following legislative appropriation. Disbursements from the fund shall be on authorization of the director or the director's designee. The fund is subject to the allotment procedure provided under chapter 43.88 RCW.
(2) The department shall assess each employer who reported ten thousand four hundred or more worker hours in the prior calendar year an annual fee to provide for the implementation of this chapter. The department shall adopt rules establishing a fee schedule for all employers who reported ten thousand four hundred or more worker hours in the prior calendar year and are engaged in business operations in the following industries, as classified by the current industry classification system used by the bureau of labor statistics: Agriculture and forestry industries; mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction; construction industries; manufacturing industries; transportation, pipeline, communications, electric, gas, and sanitary services; automotive repair, services, and garages; miscellaneous repair services; health services; and educational services. The department shall establish the annual fee for each employer who reported ten thousand four hundred or more worker hours in the prior calendar year in industries identified by this section, provided that fees assessed shall not be more than two dollars and fifty cents per full time equivalent employee. The annual fee shall not exceed fifty thousand dollars. The fees shall be collected solely from employers whose industries have been identified by rule under this chapter. The department shall adopt rules allowing employers who do not have hazardous substances at their workplace to request an exemption from the assessment and shall establish penalties for fraudulent exemption requests. All fees collected by the department pursuant to this section shall be collected in a cost-efficient manner and shall be deposited in the fund.
(3) Records required by this chapter shall at all times be open to the inspection of the director, or his or her designee including, the traveling auditors, agents, or assistants of the department provided for in RCW 51.16.070 and 51.48.040. The information obtained from employer records under the provisions of this section shall be subject to the same confidentiality requirements as set forth in RCW 51.16.070.
(4) An employer may appeal the assessment of the fee or penalties pursuant to the procedures set forth in Title 51 RCW and accompanying rules except that the employer shall not have the right of appeal to superior court as provided in Title 51 RCW. The employer from whom the fee or penalty is demanded or enforced, may however, within thirty days of the board of industrial insurance appeal's final order, pay the fee or penalty under written protest setting forth all the grounds upon which such fee or penalty is claimed to be unlawful, excessive, or otherwise improper and thereafter bring an action in superior court against the department to recover such fee or penalty or any portion of the fee or penalty which was paid under protest.
(5) Repayment shall be made to the general fund of any moneys appropriated by law in order to implement this chapter.


SeverabilityEffective date2004 c 276: See notes following RCW 43.330.167.
SeverabilityEffective date2001 2nd sp.s. c 7: See notes following RCW 43.320.110.
SeverabilityEffective date1999 c 309: See notes following RCW 41.06.152.
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