Chapter 15.08

 

ADMINISTRATION OF DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS

 

 

Sections:

 

15.08.010   Purpose and Applicability

          15.08.020   Administration

          15.08.030   Exempt Actions

          15.08.040   Pre-application Conference

          15.08.050   Optional Consolidated Permit Processing

          15.08.060   Project Permit Application

          15.08.070   Determination of Completeness

15.08.080   Notice of Application – Exemptions and Requirements

15.08.090   Notice of Application – Contents, Timing & Distribution

15.08.100   Determination of Consistency with Existing Plans and Regulations

          15.08.110   Public Hearing Procedures

          15.08.120   Report of Decision – Content & Distribution

          15.08.130   Report of Decision - Timing

          15.08.140   Administrative Interpretation

          15.08.150   Administrative Appeals

          15.08.160   Judicial Appeals

          15.08.170   Approval, Review, and Appeal Authority

15.08.180   Official Files

          15.08.190   Application Time Limit

          15.08.200   Application Withdrawal and Renewal

 

15.08.010        Purpose and Applicability:

The purpose of this Chapter is to comply with state guidelines for combining and expediting development review and integrating environmental review and land use development plans as required Chapter 36.70A RCW. The provisions of this Chapter apply when processing applications subject to this ordinance, except as specifically exempted by this Chapter.


15.08.020        Administration:

The Town Planner is responsible for ensuring that the provisions of this ordinance are carried out.

 

15.08.030        Exempt Actions:

A.        The following actions are exempt from the procedures listed in Subsection B below:

                        1.         Zoning ordinance text amendments,

2.         Adoption of or amendment to development regulations;

3.         Area-wide rezones to implement new Town policies,

4.         Annexations;

5.         Adoption of or amendment to the comprehensive plan;

6.         Landmark designations;

7.         Street vacations;

8.         Site plan review prior to the issuance of building permits that are exempt from SEPA.

B.         The actions listed in Subsection A above are exempt from the following procedures:

1.         Determination of Completeness;

2.         Notice of Application;

3.         Optional consolidated project permit review processing, except as provided in RCW 36.70B.140;

4.         Joint public hearings;

5.         Single report stating all the decisions and recommendations made as of the date of the report that do not require an open record hearing;

6.         Report of Decision;

7.         Completion of project review within any applicable time periods (including the 120-day permit processing time).          

 

15.08.040        Pre-application Conference:

A.        Applicants are encouraged, but not required, to request a pre-application conference with the Town Planner before submitting an application to discuss requirements and the review process. Any comments concerning the proposed development during the pre-application conference should not be interpreted as approval or denial of the proposal.

B.         If an applicant requests integrated and consolidated permit processing (as described in Section 15.08.050 below), then a pre-application conference is required.

 

15.08.050        Optional Consolidated Permit Processing:

            A.        An applicant may request integrated and consolidated review and decision on two or more project permits relating to a proposed project action. This includes a single application review and approval process covering all project permits requested by the applicant for all or part of a project action. This also includes a designated permit coordinator. If an applicant elects the consolidated permit review process, the Determination of Completeness, Notice of Application, and Report of Decision must include all project permits being reviewed through the consolidated permit review process.

            B.         There are different categories of project permits in the Town of South Prairie including:

1.         Proposals that is categorically exempt from Chapter 43.21C RCW, that do not require environmental review or public notice, and that are decided by the Town Council,

2.         Permits that require environmental review, but no open record pre-decision hearing, and that are decided by the Town Council; and

3.         Permits that require a threshold determination, an open record pre-decision hearing by the Town Council, and a decision by the Town Council.

C.        If an applicant requests consolidated permit processing, and a project action requires project permits from more than one category, all of the project permits will be reviewed according to the review procedures that are required for the permit requiring the most review.

D.        Consolidated permit review may include a single open record hearing and no more than one closed record appeal as provided in RCW 36.70B.060.

            E.         In consolidated permit review, the decision-making bodies must develop a timeline for permit approval and must jointly conduct a single open record hearing and work together on making the required findings of fact. The decision-making bodies will issue separate Reports of Decision, but will package them together. [RCW 36.70B.120]

 

15.08.060        Project Permit Application:

Applications for project permits must be submitted upon forms provided by the Town. An application must contain all materials required by this ordinance, and must include the following general information:

            A.        A completed projects permit application form;

            B.         A verifiable statement by the applicant that the property affected by the application is in the exclusive ownership of the applicant, or that the applicant has submitted the application with the consent of all the owners of the affected property;

C.        A property and/or legal description of the site for all applications, as required by the applicable development regulations;

D.        Designation of a single person/entity and address to receive determinations and notices required by this Chapter;

E.         The applicable fee;

F.         When work is proposed in or near water, a JARPA (Joint Aquatic Resource Permits Application) form must be submitted,

G.        In order to obtain a building permit for certain uses, applicants must supply evidence of adequate water supply, as required by RCW 19.27.097.

            H.        Evidence of sewer availability

 

15.08.070        Determination of Completeness:

A.        Within twenty-eight (28) days after receiving a project permit application, the Town must mail or give a written determination to the applicant, stating either:

1.         That the application is complete. An application is complete when it meets the procedural requirements of this ordinance as determined by the Town Planner and is sufficient for continued processing, even though additional information may be required or project modifications may be undertaken later.

2.         That the application is incomplete and what is necessary to make the application complete. The applicant then has ninety days (90) to submit the information to the Town. If the applicant does not submit the required additional information within the ninety-day period, the application will lapse. Within fourteen (14) days after an applicant has submitted additional information identified by the Town Planner as being necessary for a complete application, the applicant must be notified that the application is complete. [RCW 36.70B.070]

B.         An application will be deemed complete if the Town does not provide a written determination to the applicant that the application is incomplete within twenty-eight (28) days after receiving the application. [RCW 36.70B.070]

 

15.08.080        Notice of Application - Exemptions and Requirements:

A Notice of Application is not required for actions which are categorically exempt from SEPA, or for which environmental review has been completed. This includes:

1.         Application for building permits for buildings that are categorically exempt from SEPA under WAC 197-11-800,   

2.         Application for boundary line adjustments;

3.         Application for short plat approval;

4.         Variance;

5.         Preliminary SEPA threshold determination (EIS required);

6.         Shoreline Exemptions

7.         Application for site plan review; and

8.         All administrative interpretations.

 

15.08.090        Notice of Application – Contents, Timing & Distribution:

A.        Contents. The Notice of Application must contain the following information:

1.         The date that the application was received by the Town, the date of issue of the Determination of Completeness, and the date of the Notice of Application;

2.         A description of the proposed project;

3.         A list of the project permits included in the application;

4.         Identification of other required permits that are not included in the application, to the extent known by the Town,

5.         Identification of existing environmental documents and studies that evaluate the proposed project and the location where they can be reviewed,

6.         The dates of the public comment period, which must be not less than fourteen (14) nor more than thirty (30) days following the date of Notice of Application;

7.         A statement of the right of any person to comment on the application, receive notice of any hearings, submit oral or written comments at any hearings, and request a copy of the decision once made,

8.         A statement of any appeal rights and limitations;

9.         The date, time, place, and type of hearing, if applicable and if already scheduled by the date of the Notice of Application; and

10.       The date on which the Planning Commission will consider the application;

11.       Any other information determined appropriate by the Town, in accordance with RCW 36.70B.110.

B.         Timing.

1.         The Notice of Application must be provided within fourteen (14) days after a Determination of Completeness.

2.         If any open record pre-decision hearing is required for the requested project permit(s), the Notice of Application must be provided at least fifteen (15) days before the open record hearing, in accordance with RCW 36.70B.110.

C.        Distribution:

1.         The Notice of Application must be published in the official Town newspaper.

2.         On or before the date that the Notice of Application is published, the Town Planner must mail a copy of the Notice of Application to other known agencies with jurisdiction and the neighboring real property owners within 300 feet.

3.         The Town may erect a sign on the subject property containing the notice. [RCW 36.70B.110(4)(a)]

D.        The Town Planner must receive all public comments on the Notice of Application by 4:00 PM on the last day of the comment period. Comments should be specific as possible.

E.         The Town cannot make a SEPA Determination of Non-significance or issue a decision or a recommendation on a project permit until the end of the public comment period identified in the Notice of Application. A SEPA Determination of Significance may be made before the end of the public comment period.

            F.         The Town may elect to include a “Proposed Determination of Non-significance” in the Notice of Application.

 

15.08.100        Determination of Consistency with Existing Plans and Regulations:

A.        Fundamental land use planning choices made in adopted comprehensive plans and adopted development regulations will serve as the foundation for review of project permit applications. During project review, the Town must determine whether the items listed in this Section are defined in the development regulations applicable to the proposed project or in the comprehensive plan. This determination of consistency includes:

1.         Type of land use permitted at the site, including uses that may be allowed under certain circumstances, such as conditional uses, if the criteria for their approval have been satisfied,

2.         The level of development, such as units per acre, density of residential development in the urban growth area, or other measures of density;

3.         Availability and adequacy of public facilities and services identified in the comprehensive plan, if the plan or development regulations provide for funding of these facilities as required by Chapter 36.70A RCW;

4.         Character of the development.  [RCW 36.70B.030, RCW 36.70B.040]

B.         During project review, the Town will not re-examine alternatives to, or hear appeals on, the factors identified in Subsection A above, except for issues of ordinance interpretation.

C.        The Town may determine that the requirements for environmental analysis and mitigation measures in its development regulations, comprehensive plan, and other applicable laws provide adequate mitigation for some or all of a project’s specific adverse environmental impacts.

D.        Nothing in this Section limits the authority of the Town to approve, approve with conditions, or deny a project as provided in this ordinance and in the Town’s SEPA policies. Project review will be used to identify specific project design and conditions relating to the character of development (such as the details of site plans, curb cuts, drainage swales, etc.).

E.         Nothing in this Section requires documentation of or dictates the Town’s procedures for considering consistency, or limits the Town from asking more specific or related questions with respect to the factors identified in Subsection A, (1-4) above.

 

15.08.110        Public Hearing Procedures:

A.        The Town will hold no more than one open record hearing in relation to a given project permit application, including a consolidated permit application.

B.         An open record hearing pertaining to project permit application can only occur fifteen (15) or more days after any threshold SEPA determination related to the application is issued.

C.        The Town may combine a hearing on a project permit with a hearing that may be held by another local, state, regional, federal, or other agency, provided that the joint hearing is held within the Town. The applicant may request that hearings be combined as long as the joint hearing can be held within the time periods specified in Section 15.08.130 of this ordinance. Alternatively, the applicant may agree to a different schedule if additional time is needed in order to combine the hearings.

D.        At least fifteen (15) days before a public hearing, the Town Planner must:

1.         Publish notice of the hearing in the newspaper of legal record; and

2.         Mail notice of the hearing to the neighboring real property owners within 300 feet.

E.         Notices of public hearings under Subsection D above must include:

1.         A brief description of the project;

2.         The project location;

3.         The permit(s) required;

4.         The time, date, and place of the hearing, and closing date for comments;

5.         The location where further information can be obtained; and

6.         A statement of the right of any person to submit oral or written comments at the hearing.

F.         Public hearings must be conducted in accordance with the following procedures:

1.         The Town Council is subject to the procedures defined in Chapter 35.27 RCW, prohibitions on conflict of interest (Chapter 42.23 RCW), the open public meetings act (Chapter 42.30 RCW), and the appearance of fairness doctrine (Chapter 42.36 RCW) the same as now exist or may later be amended.

2.         The applicant bears the burden of proof and must demonstrate that the application conforms to the applicable elements of the Town’s development regulations and comprehensive plan and that any significant adverse environmental impacts have been adequately addressed.

G.        The agenda of the public hearing will generally observe the following sequence of events:

1.         Determination of disqualification(s) of members of the hearing body. A member of the hearing body who is disqualified must be counted for purposes of forming a quorum. A disqualified member must make full disclosure on the record, must not participate discussion of the matter, and must abstain from voting on the proposal.

2.         Town Planner’s presentation, including submittal of any administrative reports. Members of the hearing body may ask questions of the Town Planner.

3.         Reading of the Town Planner’s findings of fact.

4.         Reading of the Planning Commission’s findings of fact on legislative matters as detailed in Section 15.06.040.

5.         Applicant’s presentation, including submittal of any materials supplementary to the application. Members of the hearing body may ask questions of the applicant.

6.         Testimony or comments by the public relevant to the matter. The chair will prohibit anonymous public comment. The Chair, at its discretion, will pose questions from the public directed to the Town Planner or the applicant.

7.         Rebuttal, response, or clarifying statements by the applicant and the Town Planner.

            H.        For those members of the public who are unable to attend the public hearing but wish to comment certified letters might be submitted for the record before the public hearing.

 

15.08.120        Report of Decision - Content & Distribution:

A.        For all permit applications requiring approval by the Town Council, the Town Council must adopt a single report stating the decision(s) on the permit(s). The report must state applicable findings of fact and conclusions of law. The report will serve as the permit(s). The report must:

1.         State any mitigation required under the development regulations or under the Town’s SEPA program. For applications that are not exempt from SEPA requirements, the report must include or append the SEPA threshold determination, if a SEPA threshold determination has not been previously issued.

2.         Describe applicable deadlines for and methods of appeal.

3.         Be provided to the applicant.

4.         Be provided to any person who, before the publication of the report, requested notice of the decision or submitted substantive comments on the application.

5.         Be issued within the time limit described in Section 15.08.130 of this ordinance.

B.         For all permit applications, which require a Report of Decision, the Town must publish a summary of the Report of Decision in the Town’s official newspaper.

 

15.08.130        Report of Decision – Timing:

A.        Once a project permit application is complete, a final decision must be issued within one hundred twenty (120) days, except as otherwise provided in Subsection B below. The following periods are excluded in determining the number of days that have elapsed:

1.         During any period that the applicant has been requested to correct plans, perform required studies, or provide additional required information. 

2.         Any period during which an environmental impact statement is being prepared following a determination of significance pursuant to the Town’s SEPA ordinance;

3.         Any period during a pending administrative appeal of a SEPA Mitigated Determination of Non-significance (MDNS), a Determination of Non-significance (DNS), or the sufficiency of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS);

4.         The period from the filing of an administrative appeal under Section 15.08.150 through final disposition of the appeal; and

5.         Any extension of time mutually agreed upon by the applicant and the Town.

B.         The time limits established by Subsection A do not apply if a Project Permit Application:

1.         Requires an amendment to the comprehensive plan or a development regulation,

2.         Requires approval of the Siting of an essential public facility as provided in RCW 36.70A.200; or,

3.         Is substantially revised by the applicant, in which case the time period will start from the date at which the revised project application is determined to be complete under Section 15.08.070.

C.        If the Town is unable to issue its final decision within the time limits provided in this Section, the Town Planner must give the project applicant written notice of this fact. The notice must include:

1.         A statement of reasons why the time limits have not been met; and

2.         An estimated date for issuance of the final Report of Decision.

D.        The Town is not liable for damages under this Chapter if it fails to make a final decision within the one hundred twenty (120) day period following the Determination of Completeness.

 

15.08.140        Administrative Interpretation:

A.        Any project permit applicant, South Prairie resident, owner of real property in South Prairie, or party of record may request an interpretation of the meaning or application of the Town’s development regulations applicable to project permit applications.

B.         All requests for interpretations must be written and concisely identify the issue and desired interpretation.

C.        The Town Planner must provide a written administrative interpretation within thirty days (30) of receipt of the request.

 

15.08.150        Administrative Appeals:

A.        Applications filed in accordance with the procedures in the Shoreline Management Program are exempt from the procedures of this Section on administrative appeals (15.08.150) and Section 15.08.160 on judicial appeals.

B.         Under Administrative Interpretations, Section 15.08.140, any Party of Record might appeal any decisions of the Town Planner to the Town Council (also see Section 15.08.170).

C.        A written notice of appeal must be filed with the Town Council within fourteen (14) days after the date of issuance of the decision or interpretation being appealed. The notice of appeal must identify:

1.         The decision or interpretation being appealed;

2.         The name and address of the appellant and appellant’s standing,

3.         The specific reason(s) why the appellant asserts that the decision is in error; and

4.         The desired outcome or changes to the decision.

D.        An appellant must pay an appeal fee when filing an appeal. The amount of the appeal fee is listed in the Town’s current Fee Schedule.

E.         All appeals related to a given project permit application that was approved or denied by the Town Planner will be considered by the Town Council in an open record hearing conducted in accordance with the procedures outlined in Section 15.08.120. The appellant bears the burden of proving the decision was in error.

F.         Within ninety days (90) after an appeal is filed, the Town Council must write a single report declaring its decision(s) on the appeal(s). The report must be mailed or given to the applicant and to any person who, prior to the adoption of the report, requested notice of the decision. The ninety days (90) time period may be extended upon mutual agreement of all parties to the appeal.

15.08.160        Judicial Appeals:

Judicial appeals are governed by Chapter 36.70C RCW.

 

15.08.170        Approval, Review, and Appeal Authority:

Key:  R=Recommendation to higher review authority, D=Decision, A=Appeal decision

                                                                                                                                   

 

Subject to RCW 36.70B

Required Notification to Neigh-boring Property Owners

Town Planner

Planning Commission

Town Council

Part III - (Zoning)

 

 

 

 

 

Conditional Use Permit

Yes

Yes

R

R

D

Variance

Yes

Yes

R

R

D

Site-specific Zone Change that is Consistent with Comprehensive Plan

No

Yes

R

R

D

Area-wide Zone Change that is Consistent with Comprehensive Plan

No

No

R

R

D

Site Plan Review

Yes

Yes

R

R

D

Annexation

No

No

R

R

D

Comp Plan Text Amendment

No

No

R

R

D

Comp Plan Map Amendment

No

No

R

R

D

Development Regulations Amendment

No

No

R

R

D

 

Part IV - (Land Division)

 

 

 

 

 

Short Plat

Yes

No

R

R

D

Preliminary Plat

Yes

Yes

R

R

D

Final Plat

No

No

R

R

D

Part VI – (Miscellaneous)

 

 

 

 

 

Annexation

No

No

R

R

D

Boundary Line Adjustment

No

No

R

R

D

Part II – Chapter 15.12 (Environmental Regulations)

 

 

 

 

 

SEPA Determinations

Yes

No

D

 

 

Mitigated Determination of Non-significance

Yes

Yes

D

 

 

EIS

Yes

Yes

D

 

 

Part II - Chapter 15.14 (Environ. Regulations)

 

 

 

 

 

* Shoreline Permits

 

 

 

 

 

     Substantial Development

Yes

No

D

 

A

     Statement of Exemption

Yes

No

D

 

A

     Conditional Use

Yes

Yes

R

R

D

     Variance

Yes

Yes

R

R

D

*As defined in the Shoreline Master Program

 

15.08.180        Official files:

A.        After a project permit application is complete according to Section 15.08.080 of this ordinance, the Town Planner will begin compiling an official file on each project permit application filed. An official file contains the following:

1.         The application materials submitted by the applicant;

2.         The Town Planner’s report, which summarizes his findings, conclusions, and recommendations involving a project permit application,

3.         Any other staff reports prepared,

4.         All written testimony received on the matter,

5.         The electronic recording and minutes of any public hearing or review on the matter;

6.         The recommendation of the Planning Commission on the application, if applicable;

7.         The decision of the Town Council;

8.         Any other information relevant to the matter; and

9.         Certification of publication of legal notices, a copy of the mailed notification of application, and the date of mailing.

B.         The official file is a public record. It is available for inspection and copying at Town Hall during regular business hours. Availability may be temporarily restricted during or before public hearings while staff is preparing for the hearing.

C.        Official files will be kept in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 40.14 RCW (the Public Records Act).

 

15.08.190        Application Time Limit:

A.        If no action has been initiated by the applicant for a continuous ninety (90) day period, the Town may serve notice on the applicant by certified letter that the application will be terminated in thirty (30) days unless the applicant responds by return mail that the application remains an active, on-going concern.

B.         The Town may consider an application to be null and void if the applicant has initiated no action on the application for a continuous one hundred twenty (120) day period.

 

15.08.200        Application Withdrawal and Renewal:

The Town Planner or Town Council, as appropriate, may permit the withdrawal of any application filed under the provisions of this ordinance, provided that any hearing must be held for which notice has been given.