Fiscal Notes

During every Washington State legislative session, the University of Washington is required to provide information to the legislature regarding the fiscal impact of various proposed bills. 
 
RCW 43.88A requires that the state Office of Financial Management (OFM) coordinate the development of fiscal impact statements (fiscal notes) on legislation or legislative proposals. OFM must also approve fiscal notes for form, accuracy, and completeness. The purpose of this process is to provide to the Legislature the estimated cost of legislation that is going through the legislative process.
 
 

Responding to a Fiscal Note Request:

If you are asked to respond to a fiscal note, you will receive an email from BillTracker requesting a fiscal analysis of a proposed legislation.  Contained within the email will be a link directing you to the Bill Tracker website where you will find the bill summary, due date, and names of other assessors. You will generally have 2-3 business days to respond, unless otherwise noted in the request.
 
All responses to fiscal notes need to be submitted into Billtracker. However, if you need additional time or assistance with developing your fiscal note or would like to pull the information together on a worksheet before submitting, please use the UW Fiscal Note Template. We will not, however, accept any emailed responses that include only the template.
 

Tips for Completing a Fiscal Note:

  • Write for a general audience, avoid jargon, spell out acronyms
  • Report on the bill’s impact to the UW only
  • Report the incremental impact of the bill, i.e. the change from current law or current budget
  • Report current dollars only, do not build in inflation
  • Identify estimated costs/receipts as one-time or on-going
  • Identify implementation dates and take them into account when calculating costs, receipts and FTEs
  • Identify and explain all underlying assumptions
  • In the Expenditures section, report cost of benefits separate from salary costs
  • In the FTE section, report the number of FTE needed at each position/salary (not including benefits)
  • Provide explanation if there is no fiscal impact
  • Provide explanation and best estimate if fiscal impact is indeterminate
  • Policy feedback should be reported separately in the top section of the form in Billtracker under the policy analysis section
 

Additional Resources:

 

Please direct any questions to:

Becka Johnson
Phone: (206) 616-7203
or email: uwbills@uw.edu
 

OPB