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2012 Olympia Legislative Session

The 2012 regular legislative session has opened with a flurry of bills on the Discover Pass. Some are simple, some are complex, one would gut pass revenues for DNR, and another would eliminate the State Parks and Recreation Commission. Here's a download on all the legislation that's out there and how you can help.

WTA's top issue this session was transferability of the Discover Pass. As we reported in the Signpost blog on March 30, the Discover Pass is now transferable between two vehicles. WTA worked hard before and during the legislative session to get this proposal through the House and Senate and onto the Governor's desk, and with your help, we succeeded. Thanks to everyone who wrote, called or visited their legislators this year! It makes an enormous difference when hikers speak up and let elected officials know what we want.

The Details

On March 30, Governor Gregoire signed HB 2373, which made a number of changes to the Discover Pass that will make it more hiker-friendly and will likely increase pass revenues. Some of the items will be taking effect immediately, others will take more consideration on the part of DNR, State Parks and Fish and Wildlife.

Right Now:

  • The annual Discover Pass, at a price of $30, is transferable between two vehicles. There is room on the pass for two license plate.

image map of state parks DNR lands
Click here to see an interactive map of Washington State Parks, DNR lands, and WDFW lands that where a Discover Pass will be needed starting July 1, 2011. Note that this is not a complete list.

Coming Soon:

The agencies are in the process of adopting rules to provide:

  • A $50 infinitely transferable Family Discover Pass. 
  • The option to set your Discover Pass start date so that you can purchase one in advance or give one as a gift.

Next Steps

WTA is working with DNR, State Parks and Fish and Wildlife to develop more consistency in the way that they treat volunteers. Currently, there's a lot of variation in their management of the free volunteer Discover Pass and how volunteer hours are tracked. We will let you know more as this situation develops. The agencies are working with us, and we're optimistic that we'll have a workable solution.


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