Chapter 17.90
HISTORIC PRESERVATION ORDINANCE

Sections:

17.90.010    Title.

17.90.020    Purpose.

17.90.030    Definitions.

17.90.040    Historic preservation commission.

17.90.050    Register of historic places.

17.90.060    Review of changes to register of historic places.

17.90.070    Review and monitoring of properties for special property tax valuation.

17.90.080    Review of adaptive uses.

17.90.090    Fee schedule.

17.90.100    Penalties.

17.90.010 Title.

The ordinance codified in this title shall be known as the historic preservation ordinance of the city of Bellingham, Washington. [Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.020 Purpose.

The purposes of this chapter are to provide for the identification, evaluation, designation, and protection of designated historic resources within the boundaries of the city of Bellingham, and to provide for the preservation and rehabilitation of eligible historic properties within the city of Bellingham for future generations through special valuation, a property tax incentive, as provided in Chapter 84.26 RCW, and the allowance of adaptive uses in order to:

A. Safeguard the heritage of the city of Bellingham as represented by those buildings, districts, objects, sites, and structures which reflect significant elements of the city’s history;

B. Foster civic and neighborhood pride in the beauty and accomplishments of the past, and instill a sense of identity based on the city of Bellingham’s history;

C. Stabilize or improve the aesthetic and economic vitality and values of such sites, buildings, and objects;

D. Assist, encourage, and provide incentives to private owners for the preservation, restoration, redevelopment and use of historic buildings, districts, objects, sites, and structures;

E. Promote and facilitate the early identification and resolution of conflicts between preservation of historic resources and alternative land uses; and

F. Conserve valuable material and energy resources by ongoing use and maintenance of the existing built environment. [Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.030 Definitions.

The following words and terms when used in this chapter shall mean as follows, unless a different meaning clearly appears from the context:

“Actual cost of rehabilitation” means costs incurred within 24 months prior to the date of application and directly resulting from one or more of the following: (A) improvements to an existing building located on or within the perimeters of the original structure; or (B) improvements outside of but directly attached to the original structure which are necessary to make the building fully useable but shall not include rentable/habitable floor space attributable to new construction; or (C) architectural and engineering services attributable to the design of the improvements; or (D) all costs defined as “qualified rehabilitation expenditures” for purposes of the federal historic preservation investment tax credit.

“Adaptive use” is a use that is normally prohibited by the zoning in the area in which the historic property is located, but is allowed for the historic property. An adaptive use permit is a conditional use permit for the historic property. The permit may include requirements which must be met as conditions of approval.

“Building” is a structure constructed by human beings. This includes both residential and nonresidential buildings, main and accessory buildings.

“Certificate of alteration” means the document indicating that the commission has reviewed the proposed changes to a local register property or within a local register historic district and certified the changes as not adversely affecting the historic characteristics of the property which contribute to its designation.

“Certificate of demolition” means the document indicating that the commission has reviewed the proposed whole or partial demolition of a property listed on the local register or located in a local register historic district and failing to find alternatives to demolition has issued a certificate authorizing the building or zoning official to issue a permit for demolition.

“Certified local government” or “CLG” means the designation reflecting that the local government has been jointly certified by the State Historic Preservation Officer and the National Park Service as having established its own historic preservation commission and a program meeting federal and state standards.

“Class of historic property eligible to apply for special valuation in the city” means all properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places, certified as contributing to a National Register Historic District, listed in the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places, or certified as contributing to a local historic district, which have been substantially rehabilitated at a cost and within a time period which meets the requirements set forth in Chapter 84.26 RCW.

“Contributing property” means a property in a historic district which dates to the historic period and retains sufficient physical integrity so as to convey its historic character.

“Cost” means the actual cost of rehabilitation, which cost shall be at least 25 percent of the assessed valuation of the historic property, exclusive of the assessed value attributable to the land, prior to rehabilitation.

“District” is a geographically definable area, urban or rural, small or large, possessing a significant concentration, linkage, or continuity of sites, buildings, structures, and/or objects united by past events or aesthetically by plan or physical development.

“Emergency repair” means work required for public safety due to an unsafe or dangerous condition as certified by the city building official or fire marshal.

“Historic feature” means any architectural detail or other distinctive feature of a historic property that is identified by the commission as contributing to the property’s designation as a historic property.

“Historic inventory” or “inventory” means the comprehensive inventory of historic resources within the boundaries of the city of Bellingham.

“Historic preservation commission” or “commission” means the commission created by BMC 2.54.010.

“Historic property” means real property together with improvements thereon, except property listed in a register primarily for objects buried below ground, which is listed in a local register of a certified local government or the National Register of Historic Places.

“Incentives” are such rights or privileges or combination thereof which the city council, or other local, state, or federal public body or agency, by virtue of applicable present or future legislation, may be authorized to grant or obtain for the owner(s) of register properties. Examples of economic incentives include but are not limited to tax relief, conditional use permits, rezoning, street vacation, planned unit development, transfer of development rights, facade easements, gifts, preferential leasing policies, beneficial placement of public improvements or amenities, or the like.

“Integrity” is the measure of the authenticity of a property’s historic identity evidenced by comparing its present state to its state during the period(s) of significance. This shall include whether the property has maintained its character by retaining such qualities as location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and association.

“Local review board” or “board” used in Chapter 84.26 RCW and Chapter 254-20 WAC for the special valuation of historic properties means the historic preservation commission created in BMC 2.54.010.

“National Register of Historic Places” means the national listing of properties significant to the nation’s cultural history because of their documented importance to the nation’s history, architectural history, engineering, or cultural heritage.

“Object” is a thing of functional, aesthetic, cultural, historical, or scientific value that may be, by nature or design, movable yet related to a special setting or environment.

“Ordinary repair and maintenance” means work for which a permit issued by the city of Bellingham is not required by law, and where the purpose and effect of such work is to correct any deterioration or decay of or damage to the real property or structure appurtenance therein and to restore the same, as nearly as may be practicable, to the condition prior to the occurrence of such deterioration, decay, or damage. Painting of previously unpainted surfaces is not considered “ordinary repair and maintenance.”

“Owner” of property is the fee simple owner of record as exists on the Whatcom County assessor’s records.

“Register of historic places,” “local register,” or “register” means the listing of locally designated properties provided for in BMC 17.90.050.

“Register property” means real property together with improvements thereon, which is individually listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places or listed on the register as a contributing property to a historic district.

“Significance” or “significant” used in the context of historic significance means the following: a property with local, state, or national significance is one which helps in the understanding of the history of the local area, state, or nation (whichever is applicable) by illuminating the local, statewide, or nationwide impact of the events or persons associated with the property, or its architectural type or style in information potential. The local area can include city of Bellingham, Whatcom County, or Northwest Washington, or a modest geographic or cultural area, such as a neighborhood. Local significance may apply to a property that illustrates a theme that is important to one or more localities; state significance to a theme important to the history of the state; and national significance to property or exceptional value representing or illustrating an important theme in the history of the nation.

“Site” is a place where a significant event or pattern of events occurred. It may be the location of historic occupation or activities that may be marked by physical remains; or it may be the symbolic focus of a significant event or pattern of events that may not have been actively occupied. A site may be the location of ruined or now nonextant building or structure if the location itself possesses historic, cultural, or archaeological significance.

“Special valuation for historic properties” or “special valuation” means the local option program which when implemented makes available to property owners a special tax valuation for rehabilitation of historic properties under which the assessed value of an eligible historic property is determined at a rate that excludes, for up to 10 years, the actual cost of the rehabilitation (Chapter 84.26 RCW).

“State Register of Historic Places” means the state listing of properties significant to the community, state, or nation but which may or may not meet the criteria of the National Register.

“Structure” is a work made up of interdependent and interrelated parts in a definite pattern of organization. Generally constructed by persons, it is often an engineering project.

“Washington State Advisory Council’s Standards for the Rehabilitation and Maintenance of Historic Properties” or “State Advisory Council’s Standards” means the rehabilitation and maintenance standards used by the city of Bellingham’s historic preservation commission as minimum requirements for determining whether or not a historic property is eligible for special valuation and whether or not the property continues to be eligible for special valuation once it has been so classified. [Ord. 2015-12-053 § 1; Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.040 Historic preservation commission.

A. Creation, Size, and Composition. The Bellingham historic preservation commission is created and members on the commission are selected in accordance with BMC 2.54.010 and 2.54.020.

B. Powers and Duties. The major responsibility of the historic preservation commission is to identify and actively encourage the conservation of the city of Bellingham’s historic resources by initiating and maintaining a register of historic places and reviewing proposed changes to register properties; to raise community awareness of the city’s history and historic resources; and to serve as the city’s primary resource in matters of history, historic planning, and preservation.

In carrying out these responsibilities, the historic preservation commission is authorized to engage in the following:

1. Conduct and maintain a comprehensive inventory of historic resources within the boundaries of the city of Bellingham to be known as the city of Bellingham’s historic inventory, and publicize and periodically update inventory results. Properties listed on the inventory shall be so noted in the city’s manual or electronic permit tracking system or other database to alert staff and public as to the presence of a historic site, structure, object, or building.

2. Initiate and maintain the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places. This official register shall be compiled of buildings, structures, sites, objects, and districts identified by the commission as having historic significance worthy of recognition and protection by the city of Bellingham and encouragement of efforts by owners to maintain, rehabilitate, and preserve properties.

3. Review nominations to the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places according to criteria in BMC 17.90.050 and adopt standards in its rules to be used to guide this review.

4. Review proposals to construct, change, alter, modify, remodel, move, demolish, or significantly affect properties or districts on the register as provided in BMC 17.90.060; and adopt standards in its rules to be used to guide this review and the issuance of a certificate of alteration or certificate of demolition.

5. Provide for the review either by the commission or its staff of all applications for approvals, permits, environmental assessments or impact statements, and other similar documents pertaining to identified historic resources or adjacent properties.

6. Conduct all commission meetings in compliance with Chapter 42.30 RCW, Open Public Meetings Act, provide for adequate public participation, and adopt standards in its rules to guide this action.

7. Participate in, promote, and conduct public information, educational, and interpretive programs pertaining to historic resources.

8. Establish liaison support, communication and cooperation with federal, state, and other local government entities which will further historic preservation objectives, including public education, within the city of Bellingham area.

9. Review and comment to the city council and planning commission on land use, housing and redevelopment, municipal improvement and other types of planning and programs undertaken by any department of the city, other neighboring communities, Whatcom County, the state or federal governments, as they relate to historic resources of the city.

10. Advise the city council, the planning commission, and the mayor generally on matters of city history and historic preservation.

11. Perform other related functions assigned to the commission by the city council or the mayor.

12. Provide information to the public on methods of maintaining and rehabilitating historic properties. This may take the form of pamphlets, newsletters, workshops, or similar activities.

13. Officially recognize excellence in the rehabilitation of historic buildings, structures, sites and districts, and new construction in historic areas, and encourage appropriate measures for such recognition.

14. Be informed about and provide information to the public and city departments on incentives for preservation of historic resources including legislation, regulations and codes which encourage the use and adaptive reuse of historic properties.

15. Review nominations to the State and National Registers of Historic Places.

16. Investigate and report to the city council on the use of various federal, state, local or private funding sources available to promote historic resource preservation in the city.

17. Serve as the local review board for special valuation and:

a. Make determination concerning the eligibility of historic properties for special valuation;

b. Verify that the improvements are consistent with the Washington State Advisory Council’s Standards for Rehabilitation and Maintenance;

c. Enter into agreements with property owners for the duration of the special valuation period as required under WAC 254-20-070(2);

d. Approve or deny applications for special valuation;

e. Monitor the properties for continued compliance with the agreements and statutory eligibility requirements during the 10-year special valuation period; and

f. Adopt bylaws and/or administrative rules and comply with all other local review board responsibilities identified in Chapter 84.26 RCW.

C. Organization, Meetings, and Rules. The commission’s organization, meetings, and rules shall be established in accordance with BMC 2.54.030. [Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.050 Register of historic places.

A. Criteria for Determining Designation in the Register. Any building, structure, site, object, or district may be designated for inclusion in the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places if it is significantly associated with the history, architecture, archaeology, engineering, or cultural heritage of the community; if it maintains significant historic integrity; if it is at least 50 years old, or is of lesser age and has exceptional importance; and if it falls in at least one of the following categories:

1. Is associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of national, state, or local history.

2. Embodies the distinctive architectural characteristics of a type, period, style, or method of design or construction, or represents a significant and distinguishable entity whose components may lack individual distinction.

3. In the case of districts, the application shall include a description of the boundaries of the district; the characteristics of the district which justify its designation; and a list of all properties including features, structures, sites, and objects which contribute to the designation of the district.

4. Exemplifies or reflects special elements of the city’s cultural, economic, political, aesthetic, engineering, or architectural history.

5. Is associated with the lives of persons significant in national, state, or local history.

6. Has yielded or may be likely to yield important archaeological information about prehistory or history.

7. Is a building or structure removed from its original location but which is significant primarily for architectural value, or which is the only surviving structure significantly associated with a historic person or event.

8. Is a birthplace or grave of a historical figure of outstanding importance and is the only surviving structure or site associated with that person.

9. Is a cemetery which derives its primary significance from age, from distinctive design features, or from association with historic events, or cultural patterns.

10. Is a creative and unique example of folk architecture and design created by persons not formally trained in the architectural or design professions, and which does not fit into formal architectural or historical categories.

B. Process for Designating Properties or Districts to the City of Bellingham’s Register of Historic Places.

1. The property owners, the commission, or the city council may nominate a building, structure, site, object, or district for inclusion in the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places. If the commission or the city council nominates an individual property, the property owner must approve the nomination.

2. In the case of individual properties, the application shall include all historic features, interior and exterior, and outbuildings that contribute to its designation.

3. In the case of districts, the application shall include a description of the boundaries of the district; the characteristics of the district which justify its designation; and a list of all properties including features, structures, sites, and objects which contribute to the designation of the district.

4. For individual properties, the historic preservation commission shall consider the merits of the nomination by applying the criteria in subsection (A) of this section and following the Type V-B review process in BMC 21.10.140(B). If the commission finds that the nominated property is eligible for the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places, the commission shall list the property in the register with the owner’s consent.

5. For a nominated historic district, the following procedures and standards shall apply:

a. Owners of more than 50 percent of the area in the proposed district must consent, in writing, to nomination of the district prior to its consideration by the commission, unless the nomination is made by city council;

b. Commission staff shall review the proposal for land use impacts, consistency with the city’s comprehensive plan and applicable neighborhood plan, and other related plans and codes. Staff shall submit its analysis of these issues to the commission;

c. A neighborhood meeting on the nomination shall be held before the commission considers the nomination;

d. The commission shall consider the merits of the nomination at a public hearing by applying the criteria in subsection (A) of this section and the staff analysis described above. The city shall mail notice of the public hearing to all property owners within the proposed district at least 14 days prior to the hearing;

e. After completing its review, the commission shall make a recommendation to the planning commission and city council regarding the nomination. The recommendation shall be reviewed by the planning commission and city council in accordance with the Type VI process of BMC 21.10.150;

f. If the commission recommends listing the nominated historic district on the city’s register of historic places, the commission shall include in its recommendation a description of the boundaries of the district and the characteristics of the district which justify its designation; a list of all the properties including historic features, structures, sites, and objects which contribute to the designation of the district; and design standards for the district, including standards for noncontributing property and new development;

g. A property shall be designated as a contributing property only with the consent of the property owner; and

h. If city council approves the listing, the historic district on the city’s register of historic places, all properties in the district identified as contributing to the historic district shall be subject to the same regulations as properties individually listed on the register as provided for in subsections (C) and (D) of this section. The city’s review of changes to noncontributing properties in the district, including undeveloped land, shall be determined by the design standards adopted for the district by city council.

6. Properties and districts listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places shall be so noted in the city’s manual or electronic permit tracking system or other database to alert staff and public as to the presence of a historic site, structure, object or building.

C. Removal of Properties from the Register. In the event that any property individually listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places or listed on the register as a contributing property to a historic district is no longer deemed appropriate for designation to the register, the commission may initiate removal from such designation by the same procedure as provided for in establishing the designation in subsection (B) of this section. A property may be removed from the register without the owner’s consent. Once a property is removed from the register, it is no longer eligible for special valuation or a conditional use permit for an adaptive use.

D. Effects of Listing on the Register.

1. Listing on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places is an honorary designation denoting significant association with the historic, archaeological, engineering, or cultural heritage of the community. Properties are listed individually or as contributing properties to a historic district.

2. Prior to the commencement of any work on a register property, excluding those activities defined in BMC 17.90.060(B), the owner must request and receive a certificate of alteration from the commission for the proposed work. Violation of this rule shall be grounds for the commission to review the property for removal from the register.

3. Prior to whole or partial demolition of a register property, the owner must request and receive a certification of demolition.

4. Properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places, certified as contributing to a National Register Historic District, listed in the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places, or certified as contributing to a local historic district may be eligible for special tax valuation on their rehabilitation in accordance with BMC 17.90.070.

5. A property listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places may be eligible for a conditional use permit for an adaptive use of the property in accordance with BMC 17.90.080.

6. Once a property is listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places, the property owner is required to provide ordinary maintenance to the property to prevent deterioration and decay which threatens the historic features of the property. [Ord. 2015-12-053 § 2; Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.060 Review of changes to register of historic places.

A. Review Required. No person shall construct any new building or structure, or reconstruct, alter, restore, remodel, repair, move, or demolish any existing building, structure, or object on any property individually listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places or listed on the register as a contributing property to a historic district without receipt of a certificate of alteration, or in the case of demolition, a certificate of demolition, as a result of the review in subsection (C) of this section. The review shall apply to all exterior features of the property and those interior features which the commission has designated as historic features. If the interior historic features of a property listed on the register prior to the date of the ordinance codified in this chapter have not been designated, the commission shall identify those features prior to the commission’s or commission’s staff’s review of the application or compliance with this section.

B. Exemptions. The following activities do not require a certificate of alteration:

1. Ordinary repairs and maintenance as defined in BMC 17.90.030;

2. Emergency repairs as defined in BMC 17.90.030; or

3. Work to the interior features of the property which the commission has not designated as historic features.

C. Review Process.

1. The director of the planning and community development department or his designee shall report any application for a permit to work on a designated register property to the commission. If the activity is not exempt from review, the commission or professional staff shall notify the applicant of the review requirements. The planning and community development department shall not issue any such permit until it receives a certificate of alteration or demolition.

2. The owner or his/her agent (architect, contractor, lessee, etc.) shall apply to the commission for a review of proposed changes to a register property and request a certificate of alteration or, in the case of demolition, a certificate of demolition. Applicants shall follow one of the two review processes below:

a. Administrative Review by the Commission Staff. A certificate of alteration may be issued by commission staff using the Type I process in BMC 21.10.100 for repairs and replacements-in-kind that are listed below:

i. Repairs (other than ordinary repair and maintenance) using the same materials and design as currently exist;

ii. Reroofing using the same type and color of material;

iii. Replacement of sidewalks and driveways using the same type and color of materials;

iv. Replacement of foundations or major portions thereof, using the same type and color of materials;

v. Repair or replacement of utility systems; and

vi. Structural or seismic upgrades which do not alter or affect a significant historic feature.

Appeals of the commission staff’s decision shall be to the commission and not the hearing examiner.

b. Review by the Commission. All applications which do not qualify for administrative review by commission staff shall be reviewed by the commission using the Type VII review process in BMC 21.10.160. The commission shall issue written findings and a decision based on the criteria in subsection (D) or (E) of this section.

c. An owner of a property may request that his/her application for a certificate of alteration be consolidated with his/her application for listing the property on the historic register. In such cases, both applications shall follow the Type VII review process in BMC 21.10.160.

D. Certificate of Demolition Criteria.

1. A certificate of demolition is required before the planning and community development department may issue a permit to allow whole or partial demolition of a designated register property. The owner or his/her agent shall apply to the commission for a review of the proposed demolition and request a certificate of demolition.

2. The applicant shall prepare a report for the commission analyzing the following alternatives (listed in descending order of preference) explaining why each alternative is or is not feasible:

a. Redesigning the project to avoid any impact to the historical structure or its setting;

b. Incorporating the structure into the overall design of the project;

c. Converting the structure into another use (adaptive use);

d. Selling the structure at no more than fair market value to an owner who will maintain the historic structure;

e. Relocating the structure on the property;

f. Relocating the structure to another property;

g. Salvaging from the structure historically significant architectural features and building materials; and

h. Documenting the structure as a whole and its individual architectural features in photographs, drawings, and/or text. Such documentation shall be submitted to, and archived by, the planning and community development department.

3. If the commission finds that there is no feasible alternative to demolition, the commission shall issue a certificate of demolition. The commission may attach conditions to the certificate to mitigate the loss of the historic property. The certificate and any conditions shall become conditions of approval of the demolition permit issued. After the property is demolished, the commission shall initiate removal of the property from the register.

E. Certificate of Alteration Criteria. The commission shall issue a certificate of alteration if it determines:

1. The proposed work will not detrimentally alter, destroy, or affect any historic feature; or

2. In the case of construction of a new building or structure upon a historic property, the exterior of such construction will not adversely affect and will be compatible with the external appearance of the existing designated buildings and structures on the property.

If the commission issues a certificate of alteration, the planning and community development department may then issue the permit for the work subject to any conditions contained in the certificate of alteration. [Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.070 Review and monitoring of properties for special property tax valuation.

A. Timelines.

1. The owner of a historic property desiring special valuation shall apply to the Whatcom County assessor on forms prescribed by the Department of Revenue and supplied by the assessor.

2. The assessor shall forward applications to the commission within 10 calendar days of receipt.

3. All applications received by the assessor by October 1st shall be reviewed by the commission before December 31st of the same calendar year for a special valuation beginning the following year.

4. A commission decision regarding an application shall be certified in writing and filed with the assessor within 10 calendar days of issuance.

B. Procedure.

1. The assessor forwards the application to the commission.

2. The commission reviews the application at a public meeting and determines if the application is complete and if the property meets the criteria set forth in WAC 254-20-070(1) and listed in subsection (C) of this section.

a. If the commission finds the property meets all the criteria, then, on behalf of the city, it enters into a historic preservation special valuation agreement as set forth in WAC 254-20-120 and subsection (D) of this section with the owner. Upon execution of the agreement between the owner and the commission, the commission approves the application.

b. If the commission determines the property does not meet all the criteria, then it shall deny the application.

3. The commission certifies its decisions in writing and states the facts upon which the approval or denial is based and files a copy of the certification with the assessor.

4. For approved applications, the commission:

a. Forwards copies of the agreement, application, and supporting documentation to the assessor;

b. Notifies the State Review Board that the property has been approved for special valuation; and

c. Monitors the property for continued compliance with the agreement throughout the 10-year special valuation period.

5. The commission may determine at a public meeting whether or not a register property is disqualified from special valuation. The property owner shall be given notice of this meeting. The commission may disqualify a property from special valuation because of:

a. The owner’s failure to comply with the terms of the agreement; or

b. A loss of historic value resulting from physical changes to the building or site.

6. In the event that the commission concludes that a property is no longer qualified for special valuation, the commission shall notify the owner, assessor, and State Review Board in writing and state the facts supporting its findings.

C. Criteria.

1. Historic Property Criteria. The class of historic property eligible to apply for special valuation in the city means all properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places, certified as contributing to a National Register Historic District, listed on the city of Bellingham’s register of historic places, or certified as contributing to a local historic district, which have been substantially rehabilitated at a cost and within a time period which meets the requirements set forth in Chapter 84.26 RCW.

2. Application Criteria. Complete applications shall consist of the following documentation:

a. A legal description of the historic property;

b. Comprehensive exterior and interior photographs of the historic property before and after rehabilitation;

c. Architectural plans or other legible drawings depicting the completed rehabilitation work; and

d. A notarized affidavit attesting to the actual cost of the rehabilitation work completed prior to the date of application and the period of time during which the work was performed and documentation of both.

3. Property Review Criteria. In its review the commission shall determine if the properties meet all the following criteria:

a. The property is historic property;

b. The property is included within a class of historic property determined eligible for special valuation by the city under subsection (C)(1) of this section;

c. The property has been rehabilitated at a cost which meets the definition set forth in this chapter and in RCW 84.26.020(2) within 24 months prior to the date of application; and

d. The property has not been altered in any way which adversely affects those elements which qualify it as historically significant as determined by applying the Washington State Advisory Council’s Standards for the Rehabilitation and Maintenance of Historic Properties in accordance with WAC 254-20-100.

4. Rehabilitation and Maintenance Criteria. The Washington State Advisory Council’s Standards for the Rehabilitation and Maintenance of Historic Properties in WAC 265-20-100 shall be used by the commission as minimum requirements for determining whether or not a historic property is eligible for special valuation and whether or not the property continues to be eligible for special valuation once it has been so classified.

D. Agreement. The historic preservation special valuation agreement in WAC 254-20-120 shall be used by the commission as the minimum agreement necessary to comply with the requirements of RCW 84.26.050(2).

E. Appeals. The commission’s decision regarding any application for special valuation or disqualification of a historic property from continued eligibility for special valuation may be appealed to superior court under RCW 34.05.570. [Ord. 2015-12-053 § 3; Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.080 Review of adaptive uses.

A. Purpose. To improve the economic feasibility of a property designated on the historic register, the owner of the property may apply for a conditional use permit for an adaptive use of the designated property.

B. Procedures. The city shall process an adaptive use application as an application for a conditional use permit in accordance with the Type III-A review process of BMC 21.10.120. If the adaptive use proposed by the owner of the property requires modification of the property, the owner must first obtain a certificate of alteration as provided for in BMC 17.90.060.

C. Criteria. In considering an application for a conditional use permit for an adaptive use, the hearing examiner shall grant the permit if all of the following criteria are met:

1. Because of the nature of the historic property, restricting the property to just permitted uses creates an unfair burden on the owner;

2. The proposed use is reasonable in light of other alternatives available to achieve the objectives of the owner and the applicant;

3. The proposed use change complies with the requirements of the city’s land use ordinance, including the conditional use section, and is consistent with the applicable neighborhood plan; and

4. The proposed use change is necessary to enable the owner or applicant to obtain a reasonable return on the site, improvement or object. [Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.090 Fee schedule.

An application for designation on the historic register, certificate of alteration or demolition, special valuation, or adaptive use shall be accompanied by a fee payment to the city in an amount set by city council resolution. [Ord. 2005-12-094].

17.90.100 Penalties.

A. Anyone violating or failing to comply with the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum fine of $1,000. Each day’s violation or failure to comply shall constitute a separate offense.

B. In addition, anyone violating or failing to comply with the provisions of this chapter shall also be subject to a cumulative civil penalty in an amount not to exceed $100.00 per day. The city shall collect such penalty by civil action. [Ord. 2005-12-094].