Office of Policy and External Relations

The Office of Policy & External Relations (OPER), within the Office of the Secretary, provides leadership in state and federal government relations in the development and strategic focus of the department's legislative agenda and policy initiatives. OPER directs and oversees the implementation of strategic legislative initiatives through the legislative process and development of administrative rules, and the review of administrative appeals.

The office serves as the department's primary point of contact with local, state and federal elected and appointed officials and their staffs, regarding complex policy issues and the department's policy direction.  OPER provides for the department's rule-making process which establishes department-wide rule-making requirements and guidelines, the department's administrative hearing process that reviews administrative hearing decisions issued by Administrative Law Judges at the Office of Administrative Hearings.

OPER Units

State Resources

Federal Resources

Local Government

Contact the Office of Policy & External Relations

Sharon Swanson, Senior Director

Sharon.Swanson@dshs.wa.gov 

(360) 902-7814

 

Confidential Secretary
(360) 902-7811

Government Relations
(360) 902-7813

Board of Appeals
(360) 664-6100

Rules & Policies Assistance Unit
(360) 664-6097

Constituent Services
(800) 737-0617 (Washington callers only)
(360) 902-7878