Chapter 11.10
CONSISTENCY WITH DEVELOPMENT REGULATIONS AND SEPA

Sections:

11.10.001    Determination of consistency.

11.10.002    Initial SEPA analysis.

11.10.003    Categorically exempt actions and project review.

11.10.001 Determination of consistency.

A.    Purpose. When the city receives a project permit application, consistency between the proposed project and the applicable development regulations and comprehensive plan shall be determined through the process in this chapter.

B.    Consistency. During project permit application review, the city shall first determine whether the items listed in this subsection are defined in the city’s development regulations applicable to the proposed project. In the absence of applicable development regulations, the city shall determine whether the items listed in this subsection are defined in the city’s adopted comprehensive plan. The applicable regulations or plans shall be determinative of the following:

1.    The type of land use permitted at the site, including uses that may be allowed under certain circumstances, if the criteria for their approval have been satisfied;

2.    The level of development, such as units per acre, density of residential development, or other measures of density;

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

4.    Character of the development, such as, but not limited to, density and/or intensity of the proposed development, dimensional standards, building height, bulk and scale, architectural features, site design and layout requirements, landscaping, preservation of open space, critical area regulations, and other city development standards.

C.    Additional Information. Should it be determined during project permit application consistency review that additional information is necessary to complete project permit application consistency review, the city may request the applicant to supply additional information or studies.

1.    The notice of decision issue date of 120 days after determination of completeness shall be suspended from the date the city notifies the applicant of the need for additional information until the earlier of the date the city determines whether the additional information satisfies the request for information or 14 calendar days after the date the information has been provided to the city as set forth in BMC 11.12.008(B)(1).

2.    An applicant shall have 90 calendar days from the date of the city’s request to submit the additional information or studies; except that for applications determined to be complete between June 1, 2008, and December 31, 2010, applicants shall have one year from the date of the city’s request to submit the additional information or studies.

3.    If the applicant either refuses in writing to submit the required information or does not submit the required information within 90 calendar days, or within one year for qualifying applications under subsection (C)(2) of this section, the community development director shall issue a decision, according to the Type I procedure in BMC 11.04.003, that the application has lapsed for failure to meet the time requirement as set forth in BMC 11.06.003(D)(2).

4.    Within 14 calendar days after an applicant has submitted the requested additional information, the city shall make a determination of completeness regarding the additional information or studies.

5.    Should the city fail to make the completeness determination within the time limitations outlined above, the additional information will be deemed complete and the consistency review will recommence. (Ord. 2029 § 1 (Exh. B), 2009; Ord. 1815 § 1, 2000; Ord. 1691 § 1, 1997; Ord. 1628 § 1, 1996).

11.10.002 Initial SEPA analysis.

A.    The city shall also review the project permit application under the requirements of the State Environmental Policy Act (“SEPA”), Chapter 43.21C RCW, the SEPA Rules, Chapter 197-11 WAC, and the city environmental policy ordinance, Chapter 14.02 BMC, and shall:

1.    Determine whether the applicable regulations require studies that adequately analyze all of the project permit application’s specific probable adverse environmental impacts (see subsection D of this section for how this determination is made);

2.    Determine if the applicable regulations require measures that adequately address such environmental impacts;

3.    Determine whether additional studies are required and/or whether the project permit application should be conditioned with additional mitigation measures; and

4.    Provide for prompt and coordinated review by government agencies and the public on compliance with applicable environmental laws and plans, including mitigation for specific project impacts that have not been considered and addressed at the plan or development regulation level.

B.    In review of a project permit application, the community development director may determine that the requirements for environmental analysis, protection and mitigation measures in the applicable development regulations, comprehensive plan and/or other applicable local, state or federal laws do provide adequate analysis of and mitigation for the specific adverse environmental impacts of the application.

C.    If the city’s comprehensive plans, subarea plans and development regulations adequately address a project’s specific adverse environmental impacts, as determined under subsections A and B of this section, the city may choose not to impose additional mitigation under SEPA during project review.

D.    A comprehensive plan, development regulation or other applicable local, state or federal law permits adequate analysis of and mitigation for the specific adverse environmental impacts of an application when:

1.    The impacts have been avoided or otherwise mitigated; or

2.    The city has designated as acceptable certain levels of service, land use designations, development standards or other land use planning required or allowed by Chapter 36.70A RCW.

E.    In its decision as to whether a specific adverse environmental impact has been addressed by an existing rule or law of another agency with jurisdiction and with environmental expertise with regard to a specific environmental impact, the city shall consult orally or in writing with that agency and may expressly defer to that agency. Any oral consultation shall be documented in the project permit file. In making this deferral, the city shall base or condition its project approval on compliance with these other existing rules or laws.

F.    Nothing in this section limits the authority of the city in its review or mitigation of a project to adopt or otherwise rely on environmental analyses and requirements under other laws, as provided by Chapter 43.21C RCW.

G.    The city shall also review the application under Chapter 14.02 BMC, the city’s environmental policy ordinance. (Ord. 1815 § 1, 2000; Ord. 1691 § 1, 1997; Ord. 1628 § 1, 1996).

11.10.003 Categorically exempt actions and project review.

A.    Categorically Exempt. Actions categorically exempt under RCW 43.21C.110(1)(a) do not require environmental review or the preparation of an environmental impact statement. An action that is categorically exempt under the rules adopted by the Department of Ecology (Chapter 197-11 WAC) shall not be conditioned or denied under SEPA.

B.    During project review, the city shall not reexamine alternatives to or hear appeals on the items identified in BMC 11.10.001(B)(1), (2) and (3), except for issues of code interpretation.

C.    Project review shall be used to identify specific project design and conditions relating to the character of development, such as, but not limited to, the details of site plans, curb cuts, drainage, the payment of impact fees, or other measures to mitigate a proposal’s probable adverse environmental impacts. (Ord. 1815 § 1, 2000; Ord. 1768 § 8, 1999; Ord. 1691 § 1, 1997; Ord. 1628 § 1, 1996).