Whatcom County Hearing Examiner

The Hearing Examiners Office will begin accepting walk-in requests for services July 1, 2021.

  • The Hearing Examiner serves as a quasi-judicial officer. 
  • The Hearing Examiner decides land use issues, disputes, and development proposals.
  • The Hearing Examiner has no legislative function – the Hearing Examiner applies laws and ordinances passed by the County Council.
  • Public hearings are generally held weekly, as needed. Please visit our Virtual Hearing Examiner page for upcoming hearings and related documents.
  • A non-exclusive list of land use matters heard by the Hearing Examiner includes:
    • Zoning
    • Shoreline conditional use permits
    • Variances
    • Shoreline substantial development permits
    • Preliminary plats
    • Appeals from county determinations regarding whether a project requires an environmental impact statement
    • Appeals of county administrative determinations involving the various land use regulatory codes and policies of the county, including the Shoreline Management Program