Chapter 21.12
SCHOOL IMPACT FEES*

Sections:

21.12.010    Definitions.

21.12.020    Exemptions.

21.12.030    Interlocal agreement between the city and district.

21.12.040    Submission of district capital facilities plan and data.

21.12.050    Annual council review.

21.12.060    Impact fee program elements.

21.12.070    Fee calculations.

21.12.080    Imposition of impact fees.

21.12.090    Determination of the fee, adjustments, exceptions and appeals.

21.12.100    Impact fee accounts and refunds.

21.12.110    Deferral of impact fees.

*    Code reviser’s note: Ord. 1738 added these school impact fees provisions as Ch. 21.08. Ord. 1771 amended Ord. 1738 and renumbered this chapter to Ch. 21.12.

21.12.010 Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter, the following terms have the indicated meanings:

A.    “Capacity” means the number of students the district’s facilities can accommodate district-wide, based on the district’s standard of service, as determined by the district.

B.    “Capital facilities plan” means the district’s facilities plan adopted by the school board consisting of:

1.    A forecast of future needs for school facilities based on the district’s enrollment projections;

2.    An identification of additional demands placed on existing public facilities by new development;

3.    The long-range construction and capital improvement projects of the district;

4.    The schools under construction or expansion;

5.    The proposed locations and capacities of expanded or new school facilities;

6.    An inventory of existing school facilities, including permanent, transitional and relocatable facilities;

7.    At least a six-year financing component, updated as necessary to maintain at least a six-year forecast period, for financing needed for school facilities within projected funding levels, and identifying sources of financing for such purposes, including bond issues authorized by the voters;

8.    An identification of deficiencies in school facilities serving the student populations and the means by which existing deficiencies will be eliminated within a reasonable period of time; and

9.    Any other long-range projects planned by the district.

C.    “City” means the city of Bothell.

D.    “Classrooms” mean educational facilities of the district required to house students for its basic educational program. The classrooms are those facilities the district determines are necessary to best serve its student population. Specialized facilities as identified by the district, including but not limited to gymnasiums, cafeterias, libraries, administrative offices, and child care centers, shall not be counted as classrooms.

E.    “Construction cost per student” means the estimated cost of construction of a permanent school facility in the district for the grade span of school to be provided, as a function of the district’s design standard per grade span.

F.    “Design standard” means the space required, by grade span and taking into account the requirements of students with special needs, which is needed in order to fulfill the educational goals of the district as identified in the district’s capital facilities plan.

G.    “District” means the Northshore School District No. 417.

H.    “Developer” means the person or entity who owns or holds purchase options or other development control over property for which development activity is proposed.

I.    “Development activity” means any residential construction or expansion of a building, structure or use, any change in use of a building or structure, or any change in the use of land that creates additional demand for school facilities.

J.    “Elderly” means a person aged 62 or older.

K.    “Encumbered” means impact fees identified by the district as being committed as part of the funding for a school facility for which the publicly funded share has been assured or building permits sought or construction contracts let.

L.    “Interlocal agreement” means the agreement between the district and the city governing the operation of the school impact fee program and describing the relationship, duties and liabilities of the parties.

M.    “Grade span” means the categories into which the district groups its grade of students, i.e., elementary, middle or junior high school, and high school.

N.    “Impact fee” means a payment of money, imposed upon development as a condition of development approval to pay for school facilities needed to serve new growth and development, that is reasonably related to the new development that creates additional demand and need for public facilities, that is a proportionate share of the cost of the public facilities, and that is used for facilities that reasonably benefit the new development. “Impact fee” does not include a reasonable permit or application fee.

O.    “Impact fee schedule” means the table of impact fees to be charged per unit of development, computed by the formula adopted under this chapter, indicating the standard fee amount per dwelling unit that shall be paid as a condition of residential development within the city.

P.    “Permanent facilities” means facilities of the district with a fixed foundation which are not relocatable facilities.

Q.    “Relocatable facilities” means any factory-built structure, transportable in one or more sections, that is designed to be used as an education space and is needed to prevent the overbuilding of school facilities, to meet the needs of service areas within the district or to cover the gap between the time that families move into new residential developments and the date that construction is completed on permanent school facilities.

R.    “Relocatable facilities cost per student” means the estimated cost of purchasing and siting a relocatable facility in the district for the grade span of school to be provided, as a function of the district’s design standard per grade span.

S.    “Site cost per student” means the estimated cost of a site in the district for the grade span of school to be provided, as a function of the district’s design standard per grade span.

T.    “Standard of service” means the standard adopted by the district which identifies the program year, the class size by grade span and taking into account the requirements of students with special needs, the number of classrooms, the types of facilities the district believes will best serve its student population, and other factors as identified by the district. The district’s standard of service shall not be adjusted for any portion of the classrooms housed in relocatable facilities which are used as transitional facilities or any other specialized facilities housed in relocatable facilities.

U.    “Student factor” means the number derived by the district to describe how many students of each grade span are expected to be generated by a dwelling unit. Student factors shall be based on district records of average actual student generated rates for new developments constructed over a period of not more than five years prior to the date of the fee calculation; provided, that if such information is not available in the district, data from adjacent districts, or districts with similar demographics or county-wide averages may be used. Student factors must be updated on an annual basis, and separately determined for single-family and multifamily dwelling units and for grade spans.

V.    “Transitional facilities” means those school facilities that are being used pending the construction of permanent facilities; provided, that the necessary financial commitments are in place to construct the permanent facilities. (Ord. 1738 § 3, 1998).

21.12.020 Exemptions.

The following development activities do not create any additional school impacts and are exempt from the requirements of this chapter:

A.    Reconstruction, remodeling or construction of the following facilities, subject to the recording of a covenant or recorded declaration of restrictions precluding use of the property for other than the exempt purpose; provided, that if the property is used for a nonexempt purpose, then the school impact fees then in effect shall be paid.

1.    Shelters or dwelling units for temporary placement, which provide housing to persons on a temporary basis for not more than four weeks;

2.    Construction or remodeling of transitional housing facilities or dwelling units that provide housing to persons on a temporary basis for not more than 24 months, in connection with job training, self-sufficiency training and human services counseling, the purpose of which is to help persons make the transition from homelessness to placement in permanent housing;

3.    Any form of housing for the elderly, including nursing homes, retirement centers, and any type of housing units for persons age 55 and over, which have recorded covenants or recorded declaration of restrictions precluding school-aged children as residents in those units; and

4.    Any construction or building permit that does not include residential sleeping/bedroom space.

B.    Rebuilding of legally established dwelling unit(s) destroyed or damaged by fire, flood, explosion, act of God or other accident or catastrophe, or remodeling of existing legally established dwelling unit(s); provided, that such rebuilding takes place within a period of one year after destruction, and so long as no additional dwelling units are created.

C.    Condominium projects in which existing dwelling units are converted into condominium ownership and where no new dwelling units are created.

D.    Any development activity that is exempt from the payment of an impact fee pursuant to RCW 82.02.100, due to mitigation of the same system improvement under the State Environmental Policy Act.

E.    Any development activity for which school impacts have previously been mitigated pursuant to a condition of plat or PUD approval.

F.    Any development activity for which school impacts have been mitigated pursuant to a voluntary agreement entered into with the district to pay fees, dedicate land or construct or improve school facilities, unless the terms of the voluntary agreement provide otherwise; provided, that the agreement predates the effective date of fee imposition. (Ord. 1738 § 4, 1998).

21.12.030 Interlocal agreement between the city and district.

As a condition of the city’s authorization and adoption of a school impact fee ordinance, the city and district shall enter into an interlocal agreement governing the operation of the school impact fee program, and describing the relationship and liabilities of the parties thereunder. (Ord. 1738 § 5, 1998).

21.12.040 Submission of district capital facilities plan and data.

A.    On an annual basis, the district shall submit the following materials to the city council:

1.    The district’s capital facilities plan (as defined in BMC 21.12.010) and adopted by the school board;

2.    The district’s enrollment projections over the next six years, its current enrollment and the district’s enrollment projections and actual enrollment from the previous year;

3.    The district’s standard of service;

4.    The district’s overall capacity over the next six years, which shall take into account the available capacity from school facilities planned by the district but not yet built and be a function of the district’s standard of service as measured by the number of students which can be housed in district facilities; and

5.    An inventory of the district’s existing facilities.

B.    To the extent that the district’s standard of service identifies a deficiency in its existing facilities, the district’s capital facilities plan must identify the sources of funding other than impact fees for building or acquiring the necessary facilities to serve the existing student population in order to eliminate the deficiencies within a reasonable period of time.

C.    Facilities to meet future demand shall be designed to meet the adopted standard of service. If sufficient funding is not projected to be available to fully fund a capital facilities plan which meets the adopted standard of service, the district’s capital facilities plan should document the reason for the funding gap, and identify all sources of funding that the district plans to use to meet the adopted standard of service.

D.    The district shall also submit an annual report to the city council showing the capital improvements which were financed in whole or in part by the impact fees.

E.    In its development of the financing plan component of the capital facilities plan, the district shall plan on a six-year horizon and shall demonstrate its best efforts by taking the following steps:

1.    Establish a six-year financing plan, and propose the necessary bond issues and levies required by and consistent with that plan and as approved by the school board consistent with RCW 28A.53.020, 84.52.052 and 84.52.056, as amended; and

2.    Apply to the state for funding, and comply with the state requirements for eligibility to the best of the district’s ability. (Ord. 1738 § 6, 1998).

21.12.050 Annual council review.

On at least an annual basis, the city council shall review the information submitted by the district pursuant to BMC 21.12.040(A). The review shall occur in conjunction with any update of the capital facilities plan element of the city’s comprehensive plan. (Ord. 1738 § 7, 1998).

21.12.060 Impact fee program elements.

A.    The city shall impose impact fees on every development activity in the city for which a fee schedule has been established.

B.    Any impact fee imposed shall be reasonably related to the impact caused by the development and shall not exceed a proportionate share of the cost of system improvements that are reasonably related to the new development. The impact fee formula shall account in the fee calculation for future revenues the district will receive from the development.

C.    The impact fee shall be based on the capital facilities plan developed by the district and approved by the school board, and adopted by reference by the city as part of the capital facilities element of the comprehensive plan for the purpose of establishing the fee program. (Ord. 1738 § 8, 1998).

21.12.070 Fee calculations.

A.    The fee shall be calculated based on the formula set out in Attachment A of the ordinance codified in this chapter.*

B.    Separate fees shall be calculated for single-family and multifamily types of dwelling units, and separate student generation rates must be determined by the district for each type of dwelling unit. For the purpose of this chapter, mobile homes shall be treated as single-family dwellings and duplexes shall be treated as multifamily dwellings.

C.    The fee shall be calculated on a district-wide basis using the appropriate factors and data to be supplied by the district, as indicated in Attachment A.* The fee calculations shall also be made on a district-wide basis to assure maximum utilization of all school facilities in the district used currently or within the last two years for instructional purposes.

D.    The formula in Attachment A* provides a credit for the anticipated tax contributions that would be made by the development based on historical levels of voter support for bond issues in the district.

E.    The formula also provides for a credit for school facilities or sites actually provided by a developer which the district finds acceptable.

F.    The district may also impose an application fee to cover the reasonable costs of administration of the impact fee program. (Ord. 2211 § 1, 2016; Ord. 1738 § 9, 1998).

*    Code reviser’s note: Attachment A of Ord. 2211 is on file in the city clerk’s office.

21.12.080 Imposition of impact fees.

A.    Impact fees shall be imposed upon development activity in the city, based upon the schedule set forth in Attachment A of the ordinance codified in this chapter,* and shall be collected by the district from any applicant where such development activity requires final plat, PUD approval, issuance of a residential building permit or a mobile home permit and the fee for the lot or unit has not been previously paid.

B.    At the time of application for development activity, an applicant will be notified of the requirement to pay school impact fees to the district based on the fee schedule adopted by the city as a part of the impact fee program. Upon receipt of the impact fee payments, the district shall issue a certificate to the applicant indicating that the school impact fees have been paid. Prior to approving or permitting any development activities subject to the impact fees adopted pursuant to this chapter, the city shall require that the applicant provide to the city the original of the certificate issued by the district. The district shall develop standardized forms for this purpose, showing that impact fees have been paid to the district, and that the city may proceed to issue the permit or grant the necessary approval. Impact fees may be paid to the district under protest pursuant to the procedures set forth in BMC 21.12.090(I).

C.    For a plat or PUD for which a complete application is filed with the city on or after August 3, 1998,** 50 percent of the impact fees due on the plat or the PUD shall be imposed and collected from the applicant at the time of final approval, using the impact fee schedule in effect when the plat or PUD was approved. The balance of the fee shall be allocated to the dwelling units in the project, and shall be collected when the building permits are issued. At the time of final approval, the applicant shall be required to place a covenant on the face of the recorded plat and include in the deed for each affected lot within the plat the requirement to pay the balance of the fee when the building permit is issued. Residential developments proposed for short plats shall not be governed by this subsection, but shall be governed by subsection E of this section.

D.    If on August 3, 1998,** a plat or PUD has already received preliminary approval, or an applicant has filed a complete application for preliminary plat or PUD approval, but has not yet received such approval, the applicant shall pay impact fees as provided for in the regulations of the city existing at the time the complete application for the preliminary approval was filed in lieu of the requirements of this chapter.

E.    For existing lots or lots not covered by subsection C of this section, application for single-family and multifamily residential building permits, mobile home permits, and site plan approval for mobile home parks proposed, the total amount of the impact fees shall be imposed by the city and collected by the district from the applicant when the building permit is issued, using the impact fee schedules then in effect at the time the complete application is filed.

F.    The city shall not grant final plat or PUD approval nor issue the required building permit or mobile home permit nor grant the required site plan approval for a mobile home park unless and until the required impact fees set forth in the impact fee schedule have been paid.

G.    Any application for preliminary plat or PUD approval or multifamily development which has been approved subject to conditions requiring the payment of impact fees established pursuant to this chapter shall be required to pay the fee in accordance with the conditions of approval. (Ord. 1738 § 10, 1998).

*    Code reviser’s note: Attachment A of Ord. 1738 is on file in the city clerk’s office.

**    Code reviser’s note: August 3, 1998, is the effective date of Ord. 1738.

21.12.090 Determination of the fee, adjustments, exceptions and appeals.

A.    The district shall determine a developer’s impact fee, based upon the schedule provided by the district.

B.    Arrangement may be made for later payment of the impact fee with the approval of the district only if the district determines that it will be unable to use or will not need the payment until a later time; provided, that sufficient security, as defined by the district, is provided to assure payment. Security shall be made to and held by the district, which will be responsible for tracking and documenting the security interest.

C.    The fee amount established in the schedule shall be reduced by the amount of any payment previously made for the lot or development activity in question, either as a condition of approval or pursuant to a voluntary agreement.

D.    Whenever a developer is granted approval subject to a condition that the developer actually provide a school facility acceptable to the district, the developer shall be entitled to a credit for the actual cost of providing the facility, against the fee that would be chargeable under the formula provided by this chapter. The cost of construction shall be estimated at the time of approval, but must be documented, and the documentation confirmed after the construction is completed to assure that an accurate credit amount is provided. If construction costs are less than the calculated fee amount, the difference remaining shall be chargeable as a school impact fee.

E.    The standard impact fees may be adjusted, if one of the following circumstances exist; provided, that the discount set forth in the fee formula fails to adjust for the error in the calculation or fails to ameliorate for the unfairness of the fee:

1.    The developer demonstrates that an impact fee assessment was improperly calculated; or

2.    Unusual circumstances identified by the developer demonstrate that if the standard impact fee amount was applied to the development, it would be unfair or unjust.

F.    In cases where a developer requests an independent fee calculation, adjustment exception or a credit pursuant to RCW 82.02.060(3), the city shall consult with the district and the district shall advise the city prior to the city making the final impact fee determination.

G.    A developer may provide studies and data to demonstrate that any particular factor used by the district may not be appropriately applied to the development proposal.

H.    Any appeal of the decision of the city with regard to fee amounts shall follow the process for the appeal of the underlying development application, as set forth in the Bothell Municipal Code. Any errors in the formula identified as a result of the appeal should be referred to the council for possible modification.

I.    Impact fees may be paid under protest in order to obtain a permit or other approval of development activity. (Ord. 1738 § 11, 1998).

21.12.100 Impact fee accounts and refunds.

A.    Impact fee receipts shall be earmarked specifically and retained in a special interest-bearing account established by the district solely for the district’s school impact fees. All interest shall be retained in the account and expended for the purpose or purposes for which impact fees were imposed. Annually, the district, based in part on its report prepared pursuant to BMC 21.12.040, shall prepare a report on the impact fee account showing the source and amount of all moneys collected, earned or received, and capital or system improvements that were financed in whole or in part by impact fees. The district shall submit a copy of this report to the city council.

B.    Impact fees for the district’s system improvements shall be expended by the district only in conformance with the capital facilities plan element of the comprehensive plan.

C.    Impact fees shall be expended or encumbered by the district for a permissible use within six years of receipt by the district, unless there exists an extraordinary or compelling reason for fees to be held longer than six years. Such extraordinary or compelling reasons shall be identified to the city by the district in a written report. The city council shall identify the district’s extraordinary and compelling reasons for the fees to be held longer than six years in the council’s own written findings.

D.    The current owner of property on which an impact fee has been paid may receive a refund of such fees if the impact fees have not been expended or encumbered within six years of receipt of the funds by the district on school facilities intended to benefit the development activity for which the impact fees were paid. In determining whether impact fees have been encumbered, impact fees shall be considered encumbered on a first in, first out basis. The district shall notify potential claimants by first class mail deposited with the United States Postal Service addressed to the owner of the property as shown in the county tax records.

E.    An owner’s request for a refund must be submitted to the district in writing within one year of the date the right to claim the refund arises or the date that notice is given, whichever date is later. Any impact fees that are not expended or encumbered by the district in conformance with the capital facilities plan within these time limitations, and for which no application for a refund has been made within this one-year period, shall be retained and expended consistent with the provisions of this section. Refunds of impact fees shall include any interest earned on the impact fees.

F.    Should the city seek to terminate any or all school impact fee requirements, all unexpended or unencumbered funds, including interest earned, shall be refunded to the current owner of the property for which a school impact fee was paid. Upon the finding that any or all fee requirements are to be terminated, the city shall place notice of such termination and the availability of the refunds in a newspaper of general circulation at least two times and shall notify all potential claimants by first class mail addressed to the owner of the property as shown in the county tax records. All funds available for refund shall be retained for a period of one year. At the end of one year, any remaining funds shall be retained by the district, but must be expended by the district, consistent with the provisions of this section. The notice requirement set forth above shall not apply if there are no unexpended or unencumbered balances within the account or accounts being terminated.

G.    A developer may request and shall receive a refund, including interest earned on the impact fees, when:

1.    The developer does not proceed to finalize the development activity as required by statute or city code including the Uniform Building Code; and

2.    No impact on the district has resulted. “Impact” shall be deemed to include cases where the district has expended or encumbered the impact fees in good faith prior to the application for a refund. In the event that the district has expended or encumbered the fees in good faith, no refund shall be forthcoming. However, if within a period of three years, the same or subsequent owner of the property proceeds with the same or substantially similar development activity, the owner shall be eligible for a credit. The owner must petition the district and provide receipts of impact fees paid by the owner for a development of the same or substantially similar nature on the same property or some portion thereof. The district shall determine whether to grant a credit, and such determinations may be appealed by following the procedures set forth in BMC 21.12.090.

H.    Interest due upon the refund of impact fees required by this section shall be calculated according to the average rate received by the district on invested funds throughout the period during which the fees were retained. (Ord. 1738 § 12, 1998).

21.12.110 Deferral of impact fees.

Impact fees may be deferred, consistent with Chapter 21.06 BMC. (Ord. 2197 § 3, 2016).