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Dec. 27, 1999

Public hearing scheduled for temporary worker housing and cherry harvest camp rules

Press release issued jointly by Labor & Industries and the Department of Health

TUMWATER - Two state agencies will hold a public hearing by videoconference on Jan. 6, 2000, to gather testimony on proposed rules for the licensing, operation and inspection of temporary worker housing. The hearing will be aired simultaneously in Everett, Yakima, Kennewick and Wenatchee.

The proposed rules, developed jointly by the departments of Labor & Industries and Health at the direction of the Legislature, establish minimum safety and health requirements for growers who provide housing for their agricultural workers. A separate rule spells out requirements for cherry harvest camps.

Issues addressed by the proposed rules include tent flooring, minimum requirements for refrigeration, general electricity and lighting, and other safety and health requirements.

The meetings will be held at 1 p.m. at:

  • Everett - Everett Community College, Olympus Hall, Room 205, 801 Wetmore Ave.
  • Yakima - Department of Ecology offices at Yesterday's Village, 15 W. Yakima Ave., Suite 220
  • Kennewick - Department of Information Services' Interactive Technologies office, 8551 W. Gage Blvd., Suite H
  • Wenatchee - Wenatchee Valley Community College, Batjer Hall, Room 8038, 1300 Fifth St.

The public and other interested parties are encourage to attend any of the four locations and comment.

Written comments will be accepted also, and must be received by 5 p.m., Jan. 6, 2000. They can be addressed to:

Tracy Spencer, standards manager
WISHA Services Division
P.O. Box 44620
Olympia, WA 98507-4620

Comments also may be faxed to 360/902-5529 by the same deadline and must be 10 pages or less.

Testimony and comments gathered at the hearings will be reviewed and considered before final rules are adopted. If the rules proceed as scheduled, they would be adopted sometime after February 1, 2000, and take effect prior to the 2000 growing season.

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