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Hearing Examiner

About the Hearing Examiner's Office

The Office of the Hearing Examiner is a separate and independent office of the City of Tacoma created by Tacoma Municipal Code Chapter 1.23. The Office of the Hearing Examiner is charged with conducting fair and impartial administrative hearings in many types of cases identified in the Code including contested hearings on appeals and public hearings regarding proposed developments. The Hearing Examiner’s decision in a case is often the City’s final decision on City actions.

Hearings and pre-hearing processes are governed by the Hearing Examiner Rules of Procedure for Hearings and Hearing Protocol for Appeal Hearings. Individuals must review these rules if they participate in an appeal.

The basic purpose of having a hearing examiner conduct hearings is to have a professionally trained individual make objective quasi-judicial decisions that are supported by an adequate record and free from political influences. No one may directly contact the Hearing Examiner for the purposes of influencing a decision. All information should be presented at the hearing. 

Hearing examiners are particularly useful where the rights of individual property owners and the concerns of citizens require formal hearing procedures and preparation of an official record.

It is the policy of the Hearing Examiner that all actions of the Office of the Hearing Examiner shall be free from discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, political ideology, age, creed, religion, ancestry, national origin, or any sensory, mental or physical disability. No person shall be excluded from employment or lawful participation in the activities of this office based upon any of those conditions.

Special Accommodations
The Office of the Hearing Examiner provides barrier-free access and will provide communications and other access reasonably necessary to ensure participation by people with disabilities. Please notify the Office of the Hearing Examiner of any accommodations you require, two weeks prior to the scheduled hearing so that necessary arrangements can be made.

Link to TacomaFIRST 311 from the City of Tacoma
Hearing Examiner
747 Market Street
Room 720
Tacoma, WA 98402
(253) 591-5195
Fax: (253) 591-2003

Hours of Operation
Monday through Friday
8 AM to 5 PM

Please contact us if you have questions, or would like to learn about the appeal process or a specific case.