OLYMPIA -- Four small Eastern Washington counties could opt out of many requirements of the Growth Management Act under a bill approved unanimously by the Senate.
SB 6194 allows counties with fewer than 20,000 people that voluntarily agreed to join the GMA in the past can decide to drop out of the law, which is designed to control development and fight urban sprawl. They'd have to provide the same level of legal protection for some critical environmental areas and comply with other state land use laws.
The law would cover four counties -- Pend Oreille, Ferry, Garfield and Columbia. The bill was sent to the House on a 47-0 vote.