Whatcom County Hearing Examiner

The Hearing Examiner lobby is open to the public

For more information please contact us at 360-778-5040

  • 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 held as needed and in a hybrid format.   Please visit our Hearing Examiner Hybrid Meetings page for upcoming hearings, related documents and information on how to join remotely or attend in person.
  • 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