We've been busier than usual at the state Capitol the past few days—even by legislative standards. That's because we are quickly approaching our first deadline of the legislative session—policy cutoff. After Friday, Feb. 22, unless they have a fiscal note, any bills still in committee usually are considered “dead” and no further legislative action will be taken on them this year.
I work for you! That's why your input is so valuable to my work in Olympia. Please take a few moments to fill out my legislative survey on some
Hearing from you helps me understand your thoughts and concerns about state government. In a couple of weeks, I'll share your answers on one of my legislative updates and give you a quick summary of each topic.
What are “zombie” properties?
Recently, some constituents have called my office to voice their concern about “zombie properties.” Zombie properties are homes or buildings abandoned by the owner but not yet foreclosed upon by the lender. Homeowners do this for any number of reasons. Sometimes this happens when people pack up and move out quickly after receiving their first foreclosure notice. They assume the foreclosing bank will take over and secure their property. Meanwhile, their empty home or building becomes vulnerable to nefarious individuals, squatters, and thieves.
Who is responsible for ensuring zombie properties, and surrounding homeowners and property, are protected?
Abandoned homes and other buildings have long been a problem for cities, towns, and counties. These structures can quickly become a nuisance due to lack of care, criminal activities, and other issues. In 2017, a bill was approved and signed into law to help. ESHB 2057 clarifies who is responsible for zombie properties in the midst of the foreclosure process. Under this law, when a city, town or county authority determines a property has been abandoned, they are directed to notify the mortgage lender.
After receiving this notice, the lender is then obligated to deal with any nuisance issues. If the lender takes no action, then the city, town or municipality may take care of it. They can also charge the lender up to $2,000 for any expenses due to abatement.
Upcoming town hall meetings!
I'll be co-hosting town hall events in Darrington and Concrete on Saturday, March 16 with Sen. Keith Wagoner, R-Sedro-Woolley and Rep. Robert J. Sutherland, R-Granite Falls. Please join us as we discuss key public policy issues being considered in Olympia.
Time: 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Where: Darrington Library
Address: 1005 Cascade St., Darrington, WA 98241
Time: 2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Where: Concrete High School Commons
Address: 7830 S. Superior Ave., Concrete, WA 98237
Coming to Olympia anytime soon?
If you are coming to visit the state Capitol, please contact my office and schedule an appointment. I would love to speak with you!
As always, please let me know if I can be of assistance to you. Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your state representative.