WAC 173-50: Accreditation of Environmental Laboratories

Ecology proposes to amend WAC 173-50 Accreditation of Environmental Laboratories for clarity and consistency. We also propose to update our fee structure to adjust for inflation and for the increase in complexity and workload since the last rulemaking in 2010.

Our goal is for the Laboratory Accreditation Unit (LAU) to become cost-neutral while still providing excellent service to environmental laboratories and protection to the public. The current fees do not cover the work needed to process complicated, prolonged, nor unsuccessful applications.

Rule revisions will allow adaptation to new and emerging compounds and analytical processes. In the past 12 years, novel compounds have been added to the regulatory environment. Other analytes now have lower detection requirements. 

Without updates to LAU funding, it will continue to be a challenge to provide the level of service our clients expect.

Rulemaking timeline


Announcement phase (CR-101)

Filing date:
Oct. 10, 2022

Announcement documents

Rule development phase

Oct. 10, 2022 – April 18, 2023

Public input & involvement

We completed three stakeholder workshops in November and December 2022. Materials from those workshops are available below. 

Meeting documents from stakeholder workshops:

Rule development documents:

Informal public comment period — Nov. 2, 2022, to Jan. 4, 2023

Rule proposal phase (CR-102)

Filing date:
April 19, 2023

Rule proposal documents:

Comment period

Comments due June 7, 2023.  

We will review all comments received and plan for adoption Aug. 28, 2023. See above for documents related to the Proposal Phase of the rulemaking.

You can submit comments through one of the following ways:

  • Comment online
  • Mail written comments via standard US mail to:
    Ryan Zboralski
    Department of Ecology
    PO BOX 488
    Manchester, WA 98353-0488
  • Attend a public hearing — see below.

We will be holding two public hearings via webinar. These are online meetings that you can attend from any computer with internet access. You may also call in at the number below. Each event will include a presentation and question-and-answer session, followed by the opportunity to provide testimony. 

May 25, 2023, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m
Registration: https://waecy-wa-gov.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYocOmurDojHtEDkyIcpuhpCfIiVJuqpOPF

May 31, 2023. 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Registration: https://waecy-wa-gov.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZUvcuGorj8iE92rKsKlGMePhXKdBw34pJVO

For audio-only participation, register for one of the events above, then call US toll number 253-215-8782. Enter the meeting ID 825 7062 1945 and passcode 174911.

To request ADA accommodations, contact our ADA Coordinator by May 22, 2023, at:
Phone: 360-407-6831 (voice)
TTY: 877-833-6341 or 711 relay service

Additional languages

Español (Spanish) 中文 (Chinese) Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese) 한국어 (Korean)


To request ADA accommodation for disabilities, or printed materials in a format for the visually impaired, contact Ecology's ADA Coordinator by email at ecyadacoordinator@ecy.wa.gov, or call 360-407-6831. People with impaired hearing may call Washington Relay Service at 711. People with speech disability may call TTY at 877-833-6341.