February 2024 Privacy Points

AI is on my mind and many others this month as we roll up our sleeves and get to work on Governor Inslee’s Executive Order on Artificial Intelligence. 

The executive order puts in motion a series of initiatives being spearheaded by agencies including WaTech, the Department of Enterprise Services, the Office of Equity, the Office of Financial Management and the state Workforce Training and Education Board, in collaboration with an array of partners including community members, tribal governments and labor organizations.

The work entails creating procurement guidelines, training plans for state workers, reports on AI initiatives and frameworks to ensure accountability and assess risks. There also will be guidelines focusing on the impact of AI on vulnerable communities and the state workforce, as well as efforts to identify research opportunities.

You can find out more about deliverables, deadlines, and who is involved in this high-level overview. If any of these deliverables look like something you would like to be involved in, please reach out to me at privacy@watech.wa.gov. I look forward to collaborating on these important initiatives with a wide variety of partners.

More on AI on Inside Olympia

In case you missed it, Nick Stowe and I appeared on TVW’s Inside Olympia this week to discuss the Executive Order (EO) and how the state plans to handle the use of generative artificial intelligence.

Check out our interview which aired on February 22, 2024.  We were on the second half of the show after Rep. Couture and Rep. Ryu discussed the AI work in the legislature.

AI bills this Legislative Session

End of session is fast approaching, with the last day scheduled for March 7, 2024.  While we tracked eight bills related to AI this session, only two bills remain active. E2SSB 5838 continues to move through the legislative process. This bill establishes an AI Task Force in the state of Washington. While it has been through many iterations this session, the current make-up of the AI Task Force sits at 19 members and at least 8 subcommittees. The timelines for deliverables in the bill have also been modified from the original 2027 dates. 

The other AI bill still active is SHB 1999 which concerns fabricated intimate or sexually explicit images. This bill creates both criminal and civil liability regarding this material.

I also testified as “other” last month on SB 5957 which required the Office of Privacy and Data Protection to develop guidelines on the use of AI.  That bill was heard in the Senate Environment, Energy, and Technology Committee the same day the EO on AI was released. My take was that we agreed guidelines are a good idea, but the bill was duplicative of efforts under EO 24-01.

Thanks and see you next month with more updates!

Katy Ruckle
State Chief Privacy Officer