Establishing the Commission on African-American Affairs

WHEREAS, it is the public policy of the State of Washington to ensure equal opportunity for all of its citizens, and

WHEREAS, for economic, social, and historical reasons, a disproportionate number of African-Americans find themselves disadvantaged or isolated from the benefits of equal opportunity, and

WHEREAS, it is the duty of the State to improve the well-being of African-Americans by enabling them to participate fully in all fields of endeavor and assisting them in obtaining governmental services, and

WHEREAS, the development of public policy and the delivery of governmental services to meet the special needs of African-Americans can be improved by establishing a focal point in state government for the interests of African-American citizens, and

WHEREAS, by ensuring that the benefits of equality are available to African-Americans, efforts to make all citizens equal in fact and not just theory are reinforced, and

WHEREAS, the Legislature in Laws of 1989, lst ex. sess., ch. 19, sec. 113(3), appropriated $225,000 to the Office of the Governor for the administration and activities of the Governor's Commission on African-American Affairs;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Booth Gardner, Governor of the State of Washington, by virtue of the power vested in me, hereby direct as follows:

1. There is created the Washington State Commission on African-American Affairs, hereinafter referred to as "the commission". The commission shall be administered by an executive director, who shall be appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of, the Governor. The Governor shall set the salary of the executive director. The executive director shall employ the staff of the commission.

2. The commission shall consist of nine members, appointed by the Governor. The commission shall make recommendations to the Governor on appointment of the chair of the commission. The Governor shall appoint the chair of the commission. To the extent practicable, appointments to the commission shall be made to achieve a balanced representation based on African-American population distribution within the state, geographic considerations, sex, age and occupation. Members shall serve three-year terms. However, of the Initial appointees, one-third shall serve three-year terms, one-third shall serve two-year terms, and one-third shall serve a one-year term. In the case of a vacancy, appointment shall be for the remainder of the unexpired term.

No member shall serve more than two full consecutive terms. Members shall be reimbursed for travel expenses incurred In the performance of their duties In accordance with RCW 43.03.050 and 43.03.060. Five members shall constitute a quorum for the purposes of conducting business.

3. The commission shall have the following powers and duties:

A. Examine and define issues pertaining to the rights and needs of African-Americans, and make recommendations to the Governor and state agencies for changes in programs and laws.

B. Advise the Governor and state agencies on the development and implementation of policies, plans, and programs that relate to the special needs of African-Americans.

C. Acting in concert with the Governor, advise the Legislature on issues of concern to the African-American community.

D. Establish relationships with state agencies, local governments, and private sector organizations that promote equal opportunity and benefits for African-Americans.

E. Receive gifts, grants, and endowments from public or private sources that are made for the use or benefit of the commission and expend, without appropriation, the same or any income therefrom according to the terms of such gifts, grants or endowments.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set
my hand and caused the seal of the State of
Washington to be affixed at Olympia this
20th day of June A.D., Nineteen hundred and eighty-nine.

Booth Gardner
Governor of Washington


Secretary of State