Rep. Andrew Barkis, R-Olympia

A bill introduced by 2nd Legislative District Rep. Andrew Barkis, R-Olympia, will offer exemptions for infill development under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) after being signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee on Thursday, March 19.

“This bill is a product of extensive stakeholder work. It brought people together who generally disagree on growth management act matters,” Barkis said in a statement. “This bill alleviates some of the redundancies and time delays encountered by developers. It allows for flexibility with local options for jurisdictions who want to plan for growth.”

Barkis said that this new tool should promote urban redevelopment and incentivize infill development, in turn producing more affordable housing.

House Bill 2673 was introduced earlier during this last legislative session, which ended March 12.

The bill passed the House unanimously, 98-0, after a hearing and executive action in the Committee on Environment and Energy.

In the Senate, it was referred to the Housing Stability and Affordability Committee. It then passed the Senate, 43-4, on March 3.

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