Laws and rules pertaining to plumbing can be found in the following:
- Washington Administrative Code (WAC) Chapter 296-400A.
- Revised Code of Washington (RCW) Chapter 18.106.
The laws and rules are maintained and updated by the State Office of the Code Reviser.
Rulemaking for new legislation
During the 2020 legislative session, the Legislature enacted changes to state plumbing laws (Senate Bill 6170). The changes included:
- Creating a plumbing contractor license.
- Creating a new residential service plumbing certificate.
- Modifying supervisory ratios of plumber trainees to certified plumbers.
- Authorizing remote supervision of plumber trainees in certain circumstances.
- Increasing the number of members on the Advisory Board of Plumbers.
These changes have required L&I to conduct the rulemaking process to implement the new laws. This is the third phase of rulemaking for the plumbing changes.
The agency filed a preproposal on Jan. 18, 2022 to consider changes to Chapter 296-400A WAC. The changes under consideration include:
- Adding new fees and penalties.
- Modifying definitions.
- Modifying plumbing certificates and competency examinations.
- Modifying records and licenses that plumbing contractors must keep and report.
- Making updates, clarification, and housekeeping changes.
L&I is also considering a 5.58% fee increase for fiscal year 2023 for plumbing licenses, certifications, and other Plumber Program public safety activities. The fee increase is needed to cover operating expenses.
For details on the changes, see the CR-101 Preproposal Statement of Inquiry below.
Here’s what happens next:
TBD: The proposed rules (CR-102) are expected to be filed with the state Office of the Code Reviser.
TBD: A public hearing on the proposed rules is expected to be scheduled for this month.
TBD: The final rules (CR-103) are expected to be filed with the state Office of the Code Reviser.
TBD: The new rules are expected to take effect.