SB 5795 Workgroup 


As directed in SB 5795, which was approved in April 2019, a Workgroup was created to address issues related to contractor bonding amounts, creating better protections for consumers of construction services, reducing fraudulent business transfers, registration requirements and incentives for contractors to adopt industry best practices.  The Workgroup also discussed the concept of creating a recovery fund as an effort to mitigate losses for consumers who are ripped-off by unscrupulous contractors.  The Workgroup will soon submit their final report for consideration during the 2021 legislative session.  
Approval of SB 5795 gave the Director of L&I the authority to double the bonding amount when contractors have 1, instead of 3, legal judgements against them.  Your WABO representatives on the Workgroup include Lee Kranz, Gary Schenk and lobbyist Amy Brackenbury.  They have been diligent in emphasizing that the increased bond amounts do little to protect consumers who take legal action against a contractor.  They have also insisted that licensing through education, testing and work experience for contractors would provide significantly more value for consumers. For more information on SB 5795 and WABO’s involvement on the committee, please contact one of these representatives or the WABO office.  “It has been a long battle, but the report will now include suggestions to require better access for consumers to information about contractor competency and recommendations to incentivize contractors to get more training and reduce the possibility of legal judgements against them as they would be viewable by the public on the L&I website” said WABO Past President, Gary Schenk.  
The video from Jesse Jones, consumer advocate for KIRO TV in Seattle, is a must see.  It shows a common problem with the state’s contracting community.  You will relate to the issue presented and you can rest assured that your representatives will be driving home the point again about the need for contractor licensing as a better way to protect the consumers and assure a better built environment for everyone. Please view the video and share it with your staff, electeds and others as you see fit.