The Firehouse Lawyer Newsletter

Results for newsletters with the topic “Public Bid Laws

We now consider a myriad of issues, or “traps for the unwary”, under the public bidding laws, including confusions about the definition of “public work”, electronic data processing and telecommunications systems, small works rosters, prevailing wage laws, and many more; we also encourage a “pooling of resources” to further planning and professionalism in the fire service. 02-0619986v02n06jun1998.pdf
This issue considers a federal court case that found that an employer did not violate the FLSA by requiring employees to use some of their comp time as they approach the agreed cap on comp time hours; this issue also considers a Washington court case finding that an invitation for bids on a public contract is not an offer to contract but a solicitation of an offer.03-10199910v03n10oct1999.pdf
Here we look at other legislative changes in 2004, particularly an amendment to RCW 39.34; an important case involving liability to contractors under the public works laws; an important OPMA case involving whether final actions that comply with the OPMA are invalid based on a previous violation of the Act; and finally, we consider the tests Washington courts have applied to see that a particular employee is in an “on call” status for purposes of the Washington Minimum Wage Act. 05-0120051v05n01jan2005.pdf
Today we consider whether releasing only the name and address of a patient, without any health information attached, does not per se violate HIPAA; the minutes of board meetings; whether certain positions “belong” in the union; the donation of buildings to burn; maintaining fire hydrants; and the purchase of fire engines and used equipment under the public bid laws. 05-0820058v05n08aug2005.pdf
Today we address a federal court case that determined that money paid for sick leave buy-back counts in the calculation of regular rate; we also discuss a sex-discrimination case related to two female firefighters (battalion chiefs) being denied adequate protective clothing and adequate bathroom and shower facilities; we then consider adverse employment actions against an employee who exercises First Amendment rights, and much more. 06-0520065v06n05may2006.pdf
This may be controversial, but today we discuss whether a fire district may act as its own general contractor when performing specific projects without running afoul of the public bid laws. 09-0820098v09n08aug2009.pdf
We now consider the sole source exception to the public bidding laws under RCW 39.04.280, which states that bidding requirements may be waived for "purchases that are clearly and legitimately limited to a single source of supply"; we also address the right of a public employee to assert his or her Garrity rights, or the privilege against self-incrimination. 09-12200912v09n12dec2009.pdf
Today the Firehouse Lawyer discusses the Intra-State Building Safety Mutual Aid System, a statute unheard of in the fire service, which may provide another revenue-building tool for fire districts, if certain legislative fixes are made; we also consider the implications of government officials receiving gifts; a new Washington senate bill that amends RCW 39.34.030, and consequently, aspects of the public bid laws; whether call logs are public records, or whether requests for electronic copies of files that are not backed up are proper public records requests; and finally, we talk about whether your policies should properly designate “peer support group counselors,” such that any confidences revealed to them during treatment may not be inquired into in a court of law.13-0620156June_2015_FINAL.pdf
The Firehouse Lawyer may be controversial at times, but due to recent legislative changes, the definition of "lowest responsible bidder", for purposes of procurement contracts, may have changed--for the better; we also discuss whether certain fire district activities are subject to business-and-occupation taxes, when benefit charges may be imposed on religious organizations, and whether fire districts and RFAs may sue for defamation. 13-0820158August_2015.pdf
In this issue, the Firehouse Lawyer addresses recent case law arising under the Public Records and Open Public Meetings Acts; recent EEOC insights into inquires into disabilities, and how that relates to conditional offers of employment; and finally, we introduce a new column in honor of Bill Jarmon: Safety Bill. 15-0120171January_2017_FINAL.pdf
At times, state agencies get it wrong, and today we discuss that, with respect to the stripping of pensions from elected officials not working in "eligible positions" under DRS regulations; we also discuss RCW 71.05, one of the involuntary detention laws; a sweeping case involving the mandatory reporting duty in cases of child abuse and neglect; the employee's responsibility under the vertical safety standards; and finally, we outline some of the most common issues the State Auditor keeps running into, with respect to fire districts and RFAs. 15-0320173March2017FINAL.pdf
Celebrate your independence by reading our latest issue, where we consider a new case involving five-day letters under the Public Records Act; the retainage requirements for public works contracts; and where we inform you about our new office space at South King Fire and Rescue! 15-0620176June2017FINAL.pdf
This newsletter discusses a very important Washington State Attorney General Opinion. ATTENTION: The next Municipal Roundtable will occur on Friday, June 29, 9-11 AM, and will be located at West Pierce Fire and Rescue, Station 31 (headquarters), 3631 Drexler Drive, University Place, WA 98466. Our topic for this roundtable, which is a free discussion group related to issues faced by public agencies, is employment and labor law matters. 16-0620186June2018FINAL.pdf
This issue discusses the importance of the pending Washington State Family and Medical Leave Act and an interesting question involving the applicability of the bid laws to what merely appear to be "contracts for services", but which require the installation of equipment. 16-0720187July2018Final.pdf
The Washington State Auditor recently issued guidance on what is called "piggybacking," an exception to the general rule of formal bidding which is used by many of our municipal clients when making purchases; we also discuss the "deliberative process exemption" under the Public Records Act. 16-0820188August2018.pdf
The Firehouse Lawyer considers the importance of privacy in the context of health care information; we also discuss potential changes to the bid laws that would impact various public agencies, disability retirement, WPFMLA leave requirements, defamation law, and the concept of "unilateral change" in labor law. 17-0320194MarchApril2019.pdf
Because the wildfire season is essentially here, we thought it would be appropriate to discuss "abatement" costs and whether certain fire departments may recoup those costs; furthermore, we consider HIPAA, legislative changes pertaining to piggybacking, the "buddy system" under the safety regulations, a case involving the public disclosure rules, off-duty misconduct, and affirmative action. 17-0520195May2019FINAL.pdf
The term "ordinary maintenance" has been re-defined and that will have positive and negative implications on public agencies with respect to compliance with the public-works laws; we also discuss what constitutes "unsecured protected health information" under HIPAA, the Model Toxic Controls Act, and a case involving the "professional rescuer doctrine." 17-0820198August2019FINAL.pdf
Today we discuss the highlights of all of the 2019 issues of the Firehouse Lawyer. Happy New Year! 17-12201912December2019FINAL.pdf
Today we consider the liability implications of employing unvaccinated personnel and a case involving the "non-delegation" doctrine. 19-0820219AugustSeptember2021FINAL.pdf
Today we are discussing "on call pay" and promoting our upcoming Municipal Roundtable on the bid-law exceptions, taking place virtually on September 30 from 9-11 AM. Here is the link for that: 20-0720227July2022FINAL.pdf
This issue focuses on cooperative purchasing, a recognized exception to the bid laws. We also consider an important case pertaining to the mask mandate and the non-delegation of rulemaking (legislative) authority. 20-0820228August2022FINAL.pdf
This issue focuses on a recent change to the Growth Management Act that may impact service providers in limited areas of intensive rural development (LAMIRDs). We also consider the laws surrounding bid protests and appeals. 20-0920229September2022FINAL (2).pdf
We now consider the implications of the Washington COVID State of Emergency ending October 31, 2022 and issues pertaining to the OPMA and reinstatement issues resulting from that termination. We also discuss piggybacking and a case concerning delegation. 20-10202210October2022FINAL.pdf
This issue discusses what "tax increment financing" is and how it may impact your agency. We also discuss our upcoming Municipal Roundtable on financing mechanisms, and the small works and vendor-list rules. 20-11202211November2022FINAL.pdf
Today we consider an important case from the Washington Supreme Court involving collective bargaining; we also discuss EMTALA and federal grant rules applicable to publicly bid contracts. We also include a link to our next Municipal Roundtable on Fire Department Finances, taking place January 6!20-12202212December2022FINAL.pdf
This issue focuses on a recent change to the Growth Management Act that may impact service providers in limited areas of intensive rural development (LAMIRDs). We also consider the laws surrounding bid protests and appeals.20-9E20229September2022.pdf
This issues considers a substantial Washington Supreme Court case regarding the public duty doctrine, contractor bonds, new potential legislation pertaining to the bid laws, and annual retreats. 21-0120231January2023FINAL.pdf
Today we comment on pending legislation relating to the 1% lid and its likelihood of passage. We also discuss bid challenges and the seconding of motions21-0220232February2023FINAL.pdf
In this issue we discuss the Washington Silenced No More Act, along with a recent finding of the NLRB regarding non-disparagement clauses; we also consider issues with breaking up projects for purposes of avoiding bid thresholds, and an upcoming training by Eric Quinn on DEI programs.21-0320233March2023FINALwDEI.pdf
In this edition we discuss how the 103% lid bill did not yet pass, and provide a brief description of some FLSA exemptions and cooperative purchasing. 21-0420234April2023FINAL.pdf
Today the newsletter addresses a case involving the community caretaking exception to the warrant requirements; we also discuss a tax-increment financing issue, a new law on the use of cannabis drug-test results in hiring, and some bid-law issues with respect to used equipment and bid quantities.21-0620236June2023FINAL.pdf
This issue discusses competing interpretations as to whether "new construction" is not "increment value" that may be diverted to a sponsoring jurisdiction that has created a tax increment area under RCW
Our lead article today discusses tax increment financing in even more detail; we also discuss a First Amendment case, and issues related to fire-commissioner compensation, eminent domain, lien claims and contractor bonds. 22-0120241January2024FINAL (2).pdf
In this issue, we discuss some upcoming training opportunities in April that are related to the OPMA and procurement laws; we also discuss upcoming changes to the small-works-roster laws and an important First Amendment case from the US Supreme Court. 22-0320243March2024FINAL.pdf
This issue discusses some upcoming training opportunities, a major change to RCW 52.14.110 involving public works by regularly employeed personnel, and an important Title VII case. 22-0420244April2024.pdf
Our lead article today discusses tax increment financing in even more detail; we also discuss a First Amendment case, and issues related to fire-commissioner compensation, eminent domain, lien claims and contractor bonds.22-1E20241January2024FINAL.pdf
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