Chapter 18.08
CRITICAL AREAS

Sections:

ARTICLE I. GENERAL PROVISIONS

18.08.010    Purpose.

18.08.020    Applicability.

18.08.030    General exemptions.

18.08.040    Nonconforming uses and structures.

18.08.050    Violations and penalties.

18.08.060    Appeals.

18.08.070    Severability.

18.08.080    Liability.

18.08.090    Reasonable use.

18.08.100    Process for critical areas review.

18.08.110    Critical areas checklist.

18.08.120    Alternatives to prescriptive buffers.

18.08.130    Variances.

18.08.140    Best available science.

ARTICLE II. DEFINITIONS

18.08.150    Definitions.

ARTICLE III. WETLANDS

18.08.160    Purpose.

18.08.170    Classification and designation.

18.08.180    Wetland classification.

18.08.190    Wetland buffers.

18.08.200    Wetland mitigation.

ARTICLE IV. FISH AND WILDLIFE HABITAT CONSERVATION AREAS

18.08.210    Purpose.

18.08.220    Classification and designation.

18.08.230    Performance standards.

18.08.240    Fish and wildlife mitigation.

ARTICLE V. GEOLOGICALLY HAZARDOUS AREAS

18.08.250    Purpose.

18.08.260    Classification and designation.

18.08.270    Performance standards.

18.08.280    Submittal requirements.

18.08.290    Development standards.

18.08.300    Development design.

ARTICLE VI. AQUIFER RECHARGE AREAS

18.08.310    Purpose.

18.08.320    Classification and designation.

18.08.330    Performance standards.

ARTICLE VII. FREQUENTLY FLOODED AREAS

18.08.340    Purpose.

18.08.350    Classification and designation.

18.08.360    Performance standards.

ARTICLE I. GENERAL PROVISIONS

18.08.010 Purpose.

A.    The city council finds that aquifer recharge areas, frequently flooded areas, geologically hazardous areas, wetlands, and fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas constitute critical areas that are of special concern to the city.

B.    The following regulations are established pursuant to the critical areas requirements of Chapter 36.70 RCW, Growth Management Act.  Use and improper use of areas defined by the state of Washington as critical to the public health, safety and welfare can result in increased local government costs.  Sprawl and unwise development in areas susceptible to natural hazards may lead to inefficient use of limited public resources, jeopardize environmental resource functions and values, subject persons and property to unsafe conditions, and affect the perceived quality of life.

C.    Some of these areas are critical because of the hazard they present to public health and safety; others are critical because of the values they represent to the public welfare (e.g., wetland and fish and wildlife habitat protection, control of floodwaters, preservation of water quality, preservation of open space).  There are qualitative differences between and among critical areas.  Not all critical areas are important for the same reasons; in some cases, the risk posed to the public by use or development of a critical area can be mitigated or reduced with proper engineering or design.  In all cases, the current rights of landowners need to be weighed in comparison to the benefit/risk to public health, safety and welfare.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.101), 2007)

18.08.020 Applicability.

A.    These provisions apply to all activities, unless exempted, in the incorporated areas of the city of Goldendale, Washington; they are, in effect, an overlay on existing land use regulations.  Classifying, inventorying, and designating lands or areas does not imply a change in a landowner’s right to use his/her land under current law.  However, developed permits may be conditioned or denied to ensure that the proposed action is consistent with this title, as well as current ordinances.  This section applies to all permits or land use approvals issued by the city and grading/clearing activity as defined in Article II of this chapter.  Grounds maintenance and routine weeding activity is not subject to this title.

B.    Compliance with the provisions of this section does not constitute compliance with other federal, state, and local regulations and permit requirements that may be required (for example, shoreline substantial development permits, hydraulic project approval, Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permits, national pollution discharge elimination system permits, Endangered Species Act compliance, etc.).  The applicant is responsible for complying with these requirements, apart from the process established in this title.

C.    If an applicant has already performed a critical areas review under other laws for other permitting agencies, the city will not require duplicate review but will consider whether the review previously taken, including mitigation conditions and any buffer requirements imposed, is satisfactory to comply with this chapter.

D.    The city will utilize, in managing its critical areas, the best available science as suggested in agency guidelines prepared by the Department of Ecology, Department of Fish and Wildlife and other state agencies.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.102), 2007)

18.08.030 General exemptions.

The following activities shall be exempt from filing permits required by this chapter.  Exempted activities authorized by the city shall be consistent with all policies and provisions set forth by this chapter and shall require written approval from the city where applicable.

A.    Activities or uses conducted pursuant to Chapter 76.09 RCW (Forest Practices), except for Class IV timber harvest practices and WAC Title 222 (Forest Practices Board), whereby state law specifically limits local authority, except with regard to developments and conversions requiring local approval;

B.    Existing agricultural or ranching activities, including farming, irrigation, and ranching.  Existing agricultural or ranching activities are those that have been conducted during two of the past five years;

C.    All reconstruction, normal and routine maintenance, operation, and repair of existing public and private right-of-way and utility infrastructure, and other existing structures or appurtenances; provided, that reconstruction of any such facility does not extend outside the previously disturbed area;

D.    All normal and routine survey, control, or removal of noxious weeds as authorized by the Klickitat County noxious weed control board, unless temporary or permanent destruction of critical area habitat functions and values will occur;

E.    Any project approved by the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife via hydraulic project approval (HPA) for restoration of an eroded or unstable stream bank or shoreline that employs principles of bioengineering; including limited use of rock as a stabilization only at the toe of a bank, and with primary emphasis on using native vegetation to control the erosive forces of flowing water;

F.    Minimal site investigative work required by a landowner, local, state or federal agency, such as surveys, soil logs, percolation tests and other related activities.  This does not include activities related to oil, gas, or mineral exploration and associated activities;

G.    All normal and routine maintenance or repair of existing utility infrastructure or right-of-way;

H.    Installation or construction improvements on existing city road rights-of-way, and replacement, operation or alteration of all electric facilities, lines, equipment or appurtenances, not including substations; water and sewer lines; and all natural gas, cable communications and telephone facilities, lines, pipes, mains, equipment or appurtenances;

I.    Maintenance of artificially created wetlands or surface water systems, which were intentionally created on uplands, including irrigation and drainage ditches, grass-lined swales and canals, farm ponds and stock watering facilities, detention facilities, and landscape or ornamental amenities;

J.    All emergency actions which must be undertaken immediately or for which there is insufficient time for full compliance with this chapter when it is necessary to:

1.    Prevent an imminent threat to public health or safety; or

2.    Prevent imminent danger to public or private property;

K.    This chapter applies to all grading activity which takes place on ten thousand square feet or more.  For grading on four thousand to ten thousand square feet, a critical areas checklist will be filled out, which will be used to assess whether this chapter should be applied.  If the activity will adversely impact the functions and values of critical areas, then this chapter applies as it would to any other activity involving over ten thousand square feet of grading.  The purpose of this exemption is to allow activities which would otherwise be subject to this chapter but which are unlikely to adversely impact the functions and values of critical areas, and so do not require additional mitigation under this chapter.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.103), 2007)

18.08.040 Nonconforming uses and structures.

Any regulated activity or use which was approved prior to the passage of the ordinance codified in this chapter and to which substantial resources have been committed pursuant to such approval but which do not conform to this chapter may be continued subject to the following:

A.    No activity or use shall be permitted to expand, change, enlarge or alter in any way the extent of its current nonconforming operations without a permit issued pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

B.    If any nonconforming activity or use, excluding intermittent agricultural activities, is discontinued for a period of twelve months, any resumption of the activity or use shall conform to the provisions of this chapter.

C.    If any nonconforming activity or use is destroyed by human activities or natural processes, it shall not be resumed again unless it conforms to the provisions of this chapter.

D.    Activities or uses that are or become nuisances shall not be allowed to continue as nonconforming activities or uses.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.104), 2007)

18.08.050 Violations and penalties.

A.    Noncompliance with any section of this chapter may result in enforcement actions.  The city administrator, as administrator of this chapter, is authorized to enforce all of the provisions of this chapter.  The city administrator may request the assistance of the police department and/or building department, and in such instances they shall have full powers pursuant to the Goldendale Municipal Code and other chapters to enforce this chapter.  Any person or entity violating the provisions of this chapter is punishable pursuant to the procedures set forth in the Goldendale Municipal Code and Chapter 7.80 RCW.

B.    Citizen complaints may be submitted to code enforcement.  The complaint shall be submitted on violation/complaint forms provided by the code enforcement officer.  The violation/complaint forms shall include sufficient factual information on which to substantiate the complaint, and shall reference the sections of the code which have been violated.  The form should be accompanied by any available, relevant evidence, such as photographs of the violation, maps and/or reports.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.105), 2007)

18.08.060 Appeals.

A.    If a critical areas review is associated with a city permit, any appeal issues associated with critical areas review must be incorporated into a timely appeal of that permit, in accordance with the administrative appeal remedies available through the city municipal code.

B.    If critical areas review is not associated with another city permit, then appeals of the final review decision may be filed by the applicant with the board of adjustment within fourteen calendar days of the date a final decision on critical areas code compliance is issued.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.106), 2007)

18.08.070 Severability.

If any provision of this title or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of this title or the application of its provisions to other persons or circumstances shall not be impaired or otherwise affected.  The degree of risk protection as required by this chapter is considered reasonable for regulatory purposes and is based upon scientific and engineering considerations.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.107), 2007)

18.08.080 Liability.

This chapter does not imply that land outside of a critical area or use permitted within such areas will be free from exposure or damage by natural disasters.  This chapter shall not create liability on the part of the city or any officer or employee thereof for any damages that result from reliance on this chapter or administrative decision lawfully made hereunder.  Upon issuance of a permit, the permit holder is solely responsible to comply with other local, state and federal laws.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.108), 2007)

18.08.090 Reasonable use.

A.    If the application of this section would deny all reasonable use of the property, development may be allowed that is consistent with the general purposes of this section and the public interest.

B.    An application for a critical area reasonable use exception shall be filed with the city.  The application shall include information on how the criteria will be met, including a proposed mitigation plan.  The city shall make a recommendation on whether the reasonable use exception shall be approved.  The recommendation shall be based on the criteria listed below.

C.    The city council shall issue a final decision after considering the city’s recommendation.  The proposed use may be allowed; provided, that:

1.    Application of this chapter would deny all reasonable use of the property;

2.    There is no other reasonable use with less impact on the critical area;

3.    The proposed development does not pose an unreasonable threat to the public health, safety, or welfare on or off the development proposal site;

4.    Any alteration is the minimum necessary to allow reasonable use of the property;

5.    Any authorized alteration of a critical area under this section shall require mitigation under an approved mitigation plan; and

6.    Inability of the applicant to derive reasonable use of the property is not the result of actions by the applicant after the effective date of the ordinance codified in this section.

D.    The city council shall make its decision at a public hearing.  The decision will be based on information submitted to the city, and other relevant information.  The hearing may be combined with other hearings or a permit application.  All combined hearings shall be before the designated hearing body with the highest level of authority.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.109), 2007)

18.08.100 Process for critical areas review.

Critical areas review is required for permits or land use approvals issued by the city and for certain grading/clearing activity.  When review is triggered because a land use approval or development permit is required, the review procedures of the other permit(s) or approval(s) will apply.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.110), 2007)

18.08.110 Critical areas checklist.

The city may utilize a critical areas checklist to assist in its application of this chapter, and to determine whether the exemption for grading activity between four thousand and ten thousand square feet is applicable.  The checklist shall include a list of questions concerning the location and significance of critical areas which may be on a particular property.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.111), 2007)

18.08.120 Alternatives to prescriptive buffers.

A.    Intent.  The city recognizes that in some cases it may not be possible to provide a critical area buffer that meets the dimensions prescribed by this chapter, due to land area or other constraints.  The city further recognizes that in some cases the desired or better critical area protection can be achieved through alternative approaches.

B.    In considering an application for any of these alternatives, it shall always be the primary intent of the city to protect the functions and values of the critical areas.  It is further the intent of the city to ensure that the application of the provisions of this chapter does not deprive an owner from reasonable use of their property.

C.    Any proposed use of the following alternatives shall be supported by analysis utilizing best available science to determine and minimize the impacts of the alternative.

D.    Buffer Averaging.  If characteristics of the property do not allow reasonable use with prescribed buffers, the city may allow wetland and/or fish and wildlife conservation area buffer widths to be averaged.  It is intended that the process for reviewing a buffer averaging proposal be as simple as possible, while ensuring that the following criteria are met:

1.    The total area contained within the buffer after averaging shall be no less than that contained within the standard buffer prior to averaging;

2.    The applicant demonstrates that such averaging will clearly provide greater protection of the functions and values of critical areas than would be provided by the prescribed habitat buffers;

3.    The averaging will not result in reduced buffers next to highly sensitive habitat areas; and

4.    The applicant demonstrates one or more of the following:

a.    That the wetland contains variations in sensitivity due to existing physical characteristics;

b.    That only low intensity uses would be located within two hundred feet of areas where the buffer width is reduced, and that such low intensity use restrictions are guaranteed in perpetuity by covenant, deed restriction, easement, or other legally binding mechanism; or

c.    That buffer averaging is necessary to avoid an extraordinary hardship to the applicant caused by circumstances peculiar to the property.

E.    Habitat Management Plan.  A habitat management plan (HMP) may be prepared when it can clearly be demonstrated that greater protection of the functions and values of critical areas can be achieved through the HMP than could be achieved through providing the prescribed habitat buffers.  A habitat management plan may be used as a means to protect wetland and/or fish and wildlife habitat conservation area buffers.  Habitat management plans may not be used to reduce the water quality buffers for wetlands and/or fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.112), 2007)

18.08.130 Variances.

A.    Variances to reduce the prescribed habitat buffers for wetlands and/or fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas may be considered.  Variances may not be used to reduce the prescribed water quality buffers for wetlands and/or fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas.

1.    Applicability.  An applicant may seek a variance from habitat buffer standards for wetlands or fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas, where application of the standards renders compliance with these provisions an unnecessary hardship.  A variance is authorized primarily for relief from wetland and stream habitat buffer averaging.  A variance will not be allowed for reduction of the water quality buffers.  Alterations specific to wetlands and streams and their water quality buffers are processed pursuant to a reasonable use exception.

2.    A variance may be granted when it can be shown that the application meets all of the following criteria:

a.    Special circumstances applicable to the subject property, including size, shape or topography, and the strict application of this chapter is found to deprive the subject property of rights and privileges enjoyed by other properties in the vicinity; and

b.    The special circumstances referred to in subsection (A)(2)(a) of this section are not the result of the actions of the current or previous owner; and

c.    The granting of the variance will not result in substantial detrimental impact to the critical area, public welfare or be injurious to the property or improvements in the vicinity and area in which the property is situated; and

d.    The granting of the variance is the minimum necessary to accommodate the permitted use; and

e.    No other practicable or reasonable alternative exists; and

f.    A mitigation plan has been submitted and is approved for the proposed use of the critical area; and

g.    If structures are the approved use for which the variance is applied, the structures shall be no greater than the minimum size necessary to accommodate the permitted use; and

h.    Retention of existing native or equivalent vegetation in other portions of the site is provided in order to offset habitat loss from buffer reduction; and

i.    A habitat management plan has been prepared, unless it is determined through the applicable review process that such a plan is unnecessary.

B.    Requests for variances shall include the application requirements, and payment of a prescribed application fee.

C.    The city shall administratively review variances based on the criteria and standards referenced in this section.

D.    The city may grant a variance from the substantive or procedural requirements of this chapter for the development of public utilities when:

1.    The application of the requirements of this chapter would be inconsistent with the comprehensive plan or the city’s public service obligations; and

2.    The proposed utility activity does not pose an unreasonable threat to the public health, safety or welfare on or off the development proposal site; and

3.    Any alterations to critical areas and buffers are the minimum necessary to reasonably accommodate the proposed utility activity and any impacts are mitigated.

E.    Reasonable Use Exceptions.  If the application of this chapter would deny all reasonable use of the subject property, the property owner may apply for an exception.

F.    Pilot Projects.  The city council may, by resolution, establish a site-specific pilot project in partnership with an applicant that encourages the applicant to undertake creative, nonstandard efforts that were not envisioned during the development of this chapter, but through which a greater conservation of critical areas will be achieved; provided, that such project will satisfy the intent of this chapter.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.113), 2007)

18.08.140 Best available science.

A.    The best available science is that scientific information applicable to the critical areas prepared by local, state, or federal natural resource agencies, a qualified scientific professional, or team of qualified scientific professionals that is consistent with criteria established in WAC 365-195-900 through 365-195-925 and RCW 36.70A.172.

B.    Critical areas reports and decisions to alter critical areas shall rely on the best available science to protect the functions and values of critical areas and must give special consideration to conservation or protection measures necessary to preserve anadromous fish, such as salmon and bull trout, and their habitat.

C.    In the context of critical areas protection, a valid scientific process is one that produces reliable information useful in understanding the consequences of a local government’s regulatory decisions, and in developing critical areas policies and development regulations that will be effective in protecting the functions and values of critical areas. To determine whether information received during the permit review process is reliable scientific information, the planning official will determine whether the source of the information displays the characteristics of a valid scientific process.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.114), 2007)

ARTICLE II. DEFINITIONS

18.08.150 Definitions.

For purposes of this title, the following words shall have the definitions as set out below:

A.    “Applicant” means any person, public agency, or business entity such as a corporation or partnership which applies for a development proposal, permit, or approval subject to review under this chapter.

B.    “Areas with a critical recharging effect on aquifers used for potable water” are areas where an aquifer that is a source of drinking water is vulnerable to contamination that would affect the potability of the water.

C.    “Buffer” means that area which surrounds and protects a critical area from adverse impacts to the functions and values of that area.  Buffers are to be maintained in their natural condition and are to remain undisturbed, except that activities in buffer areas that enhance fish and wildlife conservation areas are permitted.

D.    “Classification” means defined categories to which critical areas are assigned.

E.    “Critical areas” includes the following areas and ecosystems:

1.    Wetlands;

2.    Critical fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas;

3.    Geologically hazardous areas;

4.    Areas with a critical recharging effect on aquifers used for potable water; and

5.    Frequently flooded areas.

F.    “Designation” means the identification of particular lands for classification. For planning purposes, designation establishes:  a classification scheme, general land distribution and location, and extent of land use.

G.    “Flood” means a temporary rise in stream flow or stage that results in water overtopping its banks and inundating areas adjacent to the channel.

H.    “Frequently flooded areas” are lands in the floodplain subject to a one percent or greater chance of flooding in any given year.  These areas are further defined in Article VII of this chapter.

I.    “Geologically hazardous areas” are areas that because of their susceptibility to erosion, sliding, earthquake, or other geological events may not be suited to siting commercial, residential, or industrial development consistent with public health or safety concerns.

J.    Habitat of Local Importance.  A habitat is of local importance if a species of local importance has a primary association with it.

K.    “Mitigation” means active steps taken to avoid, minimize, or compensate for adverse impacts upon the functions and values of critical areas.  In some cases, this chapter will specify the required mitigation, such as providing for buffer widths.  In other instances, the applicant will develop mitigation.  One or all of the below measures may be taken to address project impacts.  The measures are listed in the preferred mitigation order:

1.    Avoiding the impact altogether by not taking a certain action or part(s) of an action;

2.    Minimizing impacts by limiting the degree or magnitude of the action and its implementation;

3.    Rectifying the impact by repairing, rehabilitating or restoring the affected environment;

4.    Reducing the impact over time by preservation and maintenance operation during the life of the action;

5.    Compensating for the impact by replacing, enhancing, or providing substitute resources or environments;

6.    Monitoring the impact and the compensation project and taking appropriate corrective measures.  Mitigation for individual actions may include a combination of the above measures.

L.    “Ordinary high water mark (OHWM)” is that mark which is found by examining the bed and banks and ascertaining where the presence and action of waters are so common and usual, and so long continued in all ordinary years, that the soil has a character distinct from that of the abutting upland in respect to vegetation.

M.    “Performance standards” means a measure, control, procedure, or process which ensures the protection or preservation of critical areas.

N.    Primary Association.  Areas in which a species has a primary association are those areas in which there is a high relative density or species richness, and the area is significant for providing breeding habitat, winter range, or movement corridors.

O.    “Qualified professional” means an accredited or licensed professional with a combination of education and experience in a discipline appropriate for the subject matter that is being commented on; someone who would qualify as an expert in their field.

P.    Species of Local Importance.  A species is of local importance if its population is vulnerable (i.e., it is endangered, threatened or sensitive), it is vulnerable to habitat manipulation, or it is a game species.  The species must also be native or indigenous to Washington State.

Q.    “Waters of the state” means all salt waters and fresh waters waterward of ordinary high water lines and within the territorial boundaries of the state.

R.    “Wetland” or “wetlands” means areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions.  Wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas.  Wetlands do not include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland sites, grass-lined swales, canals, detention facilities, wastewater treatment facilities, farm ponds, stock watering facilities and landscape amenities, or those wetlands created after July 1, 1990, that were unintentionally created as a result of the construction of a road, street or highway.  However, wetlands may include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland areas created to mitigate conversion of wetlands.

S.    “Wetland functions and values” means the beneficial roles served by wetlands that may include but are not limited to:  water quality protection and enhancement; fish and wildlife habitat; food chain support; flood storage; conveyance and attenuation; groundwater recharge and discharge; erosion control; and aesthetic value protection.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.201), 2007)

ARTICLE III. WETLANDS

18.08.160 Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to provide standards for classification and designation of wetlands; and provide guidance for protecting those wetlands necessary to maintain the public health, safety, and welfare (e.g., wetlands that lend to reduction of erosion, saturation, flooding, ground and surface water pollution, recharge streams and aquifers, and provide habitat for fish and wildlife).  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.301), 2007)

18.08.170 Classification and designation.

A.    Approximate wetland locations shall be identified using National Wetlands Inventory maps, information furnished by the applicant (per a checklist provided by the city, and/or other information provided by qualified professionals or agencies).

B.    The city uses the Department of Ecology’s (DOE’s) Washington State Wetland Rating System for Eastern Washington, 2004, or as amended hereafter and adopted by the city, to categorize wetlands for the purposes of establishing wetland buffer widths, wetland uses and replacement ratios for wetlands.

C.    Regulated Wetlands.

1.    All natural wetlands that meet the criteria in the Washington State Wetland Identification and Delineation Manual and are greater than one thousand square feet.

2.    Unintentionally created wetlands that meet the criteria in the Washington State Wetland Identification and Delineation Manual.

3.    Wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland area to mitigate conversion of other wetlands.

4.    Wetlands less than or equal to one thousand square feet if the wetland is associated with a riparian corridor or is part of a wetland mosaic, or contains habitat identified as essential for local populations of priority species identified by the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife.

D.    Nonregulated Wetlands.

1.    Wetlands less than or equal to one thousand square feet if the wetland is not associated with a riparian corridor or is not part of a wetland mosaic, or does not contain habitat identified as essential for local populations of priority species identified by the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife.

2.    Created Wetlands.  Wetlands created intentionally from a nonwetland site that was not required to be constructed as mitigation for adverse wetland impacts.  These may include, but are not limited to, irrigation and drainage ditches, grass-lined swales, canals, detention facilities, wastewater treatment ponds, farm ponds not contiguous, as defined in this chapter, and landscape amenities.  The applicant shall bear the burden of proving that the wetland was intentionally created from a nonwetland site.  Where enhancements or restorations are made to wetlands for purposes other than mitigation, the original rating shall be maintained even if the changes would otherwise result in a higher classification.

3.    Road Construction Related Wetlands.  Wetlands created after July 1, 1990, that were unintentionally created as a result of the construction of a road, street, or highway.  The applicant shall bear the burden of proving that the wetland meets these criteria.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.302), 2007)

18.08.180 Wetland classification.

A.    Wetland classification shall use the Department of Ecology’s Washington State Wetland Rating System for Eastern Washington, Revised Version August 2004.  Wetlands over two thousand five hundred square feet shall be classified consistent with the below definitions:

1.    Category 1 wetlands are not common and make up a small percentage of wetlands in the state.  These are wetlands that:  (a) provide irreplaceable functions and values, i.e., they are impossible to replace within a human lifetime, if at all (such as mature and old-growth forested wetlands over one-fourth acre in size dominated by slow-growing native trees); or (b) represent a high quality of a rare wetland type such as alkali wetlands, which are characterized by shallow saline water, or bog wetlands, which are low-nutrient, acidic wetlands that have organic soils, and whose water regime is based on precipitation; or (c) are extremely high quality, relatively undisturbed, provide significant high quality wildlife habitat for sensitive plant and animal species, and provide important water quality and hydrologic functions; or (d) the wetland scores more than sixty-nine points under the DOE’s rating system.

2.    Category 2 wetlands are wetlands which occur more commonly than Category 1 wetlands, and need a high level of protection.  They provide very high functions and values, particularly for wildlife habitat.  They include:  (a) forested wetlands within the floodplain of a river; or (b) mature forested wetlands containing fast-growing trees which are over one-fourth acre in size; or (c) vernal pools present within a mosaic of other wetlands; or (d) the wetland scores fifty-one to sixty-nine points under the DOE’s rating system.

3.    Category 3 wetlands are wetlands which are important for a variety of wildlife species.  Generally, these wetlands will be smaller, less diverse and/or more isolated than Category 2 wetlands.  A moderate level of protection is required.  They include, for example:  (a) vernal pools that are isolated; or (b) wetlands which are either rare or sensitive to disturbance; or (c) the wetlands score thirty to fifty points under the DOE’s rating system.

4.    Category 4 wetlands are wetlands which do not meet the criteria for Categories 1 to 3, and score less than thirty points under the DOE’s rating system.  In some areas, these wetlands may be providing important groundwater recharge and water pollution prevention functions.  However, they are characterized by the lowest level of functions and are often heavily disturbed.  They should be replaceable, and may be improved.

B.    If a proposal is located within three hundred feet of a wetland, the applicant shall provide the following reports prior to development authorization:

1.    Wetland boundary delineation/survey;

2.    Wetland rating; and

3.    Wetland mitigation plan if the proposed development will encroach upon a wetland or its buffer.

C.    If it is determined that a proposed development is not within three hundred feet of a wetland, then the proposed development will not be reviewed for impacts to wetlands under this chapter.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.303), 2007)

18.08.190 Wetland buffers.

A.    An applicant shall provide the prescribed water quality buffers in this section unless a reasonable use exception is granted.

B.    Buffers.  Buffers shall remain undisturbed natural vegetation areas except where the buffer can be enhanced to improve its functional attributes.  Any buffer enhancement and/or limited view clearing activity must be reviewed and approved by the city.  No refuse shall be placed in the buffer.  Alteration of habitat buffer areas may be allowed for water-dependent and water-related activities and for development.

C.    If a wetland meets more than one of the criteria listed in each table, the buffer needed to protect the wetland is the widest one.

D.    The following buffering widths are to be compared to project-specific requirements set forth by the Department of Ecology’s buffering requirements for Eastern Washington:

Width of Wetland Buffers

Wetland Category

Width of Buffer

I

250 feet

II

200 feet

III

150 feet

IV

100 feet

(Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.304), 2007)

18.08.200 Wetland mitigation.

A.    Mitigation of wetland losses and impacts shall be in the following descending order of preference:

1.    Complete restoration.

2.    In-kind replacement in the same functional area.

3.    In-kind replacement outside the area.

4.    Out-of-kind replacement inside the area.

5.    Out-of-kind replacement outside the area.

B.    Wetland Mitigation Plan.

1.    The wetland mitigation plan shall identify how the proposed mitigation will adequately mitigate for the loss of wetland area and function at the impact site.

2.    If mitigation is located off site, the wetland mitigation plan shall assess whether an appropriate location has been identified to adequately replace lost wetland functions at the site of impact.  The mitigation plan will evaluate the site to assess if a site has a high likelihood of success due to an adequate source of water, ability to control invasive species, appropriate adjacent land uses and development pressures, adequate buffer, connectivity to other habitats and other relevant factors.

C.    Alteration or replacement of wetlands shall require the creation, restoration or enhancement of wetlands to provide equivalent or greater area, functions and values.  The below standard ratios shall apply to the creation of new wetlands or restoration of former wetlands.  The first number specifies the area of wetlands requiring replacement and the second number specifies the area of wetlands altered.  When impacts to wetlands are mitigated by enhancement of existing significantly degraded wetlands, the ratio shall generally be higher for creation or restoration because enhancement does not replace wetland area and only improves some wetland functions.  Applicants proposing to enhance wetlands must identify how enhancement will increase the functions of the degraded wetland and how this increase will adequately mitigate for the loss of wetland area and function at the impact site.  An enhancement proposal must also show whether existing wetland functions will be reduced by the enhancement actions.  The following ratios are to be compared to project-specific requirements set forth by the Department of Ecology’s requirements for Eastern Washington:

Ratio of Wetland Enhancement

Wetland Category

Ratio of Wetland Enhancement

I

4 to 1

II

3 to 1

III

2 to 1

IV

1.5 to 1

1.    The standard replacement ratio may be decreased under the following circumstances:

a.    Findings of special studies coordinated with agencies and/or under qualified individuals with expertise which demonstrate that no net loss of wetland function or value is attained under the decreased ratio.

b.    In all cases, a minimum acreage replacement ratio of one to one shall be required.

2.    The standard replacement ratio may be increased under the following circumstances:

a.    High degree of uncertainty as to the probable success of the proposed restoration or creation;

b.    Significant period of time between destruction and replication of wetland functions;

c.    Projected losses in functional value; and/or

d.    Off-site compensation.

D.    The applicant shall develop a plan that provides for land acquisition, construction, maintenance, and monitoring of replacement/compensatory wetlands.  Mitigation shall be completed prior to wetland destruction or concurrent with development.  Any restored, created, purchased, or enhanced wetland shall be maintained as a wetland in perpetuity.  All wetland restoration, creation and/or enhancement projects required pursuant to this chapter either as a permit condition or as the result of an enforcement action must be approved by the city prior to commencement of any wetland restoration, creation or enhancement activity.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.305), 2007)

ARTICLE IV. FISH AND WILDLIFE HABITAT CONSERVATION AREAS

18.08.210 Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to provide standards for classification and designation of critical fish/wildlife habitat conservation areas; and provide guidance for protecting those critical fish/wildlife habitat conservation areas necessary to maintain the public health, safety, and welfare.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.401), 2007)

18.08.220 Classification and designation.

A.    Critical Wildlife Habitat Conservation Areas.

1.    Areas with which known federal or state endangered, threatened, or sensitive species have a primary association;

2.    Habitats of local importance (this is a habitat in which a species of local importance has a primary association);

3.    Areas designated by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources as state natural area preserves and natural resource conservation areas.

B.    Critical Fish Habitat Conservation Areas.

1.    Naturally occurring ponds under twenty acres and their submerged aquatic beds that provide fish or wildlife habitat;

2.    Waters of the state as defined in WAC Title 222;

3.    Lakes, ponds, streams and rivers planted with game fish by a governmental or tribal entity.

C.    Mapping.

1.    Those lands which meet the established criteria for critical fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas are to be designated as such.  Critical fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas identified through the permitting process shall be mapped and shall provide guidance in the land use decision-making process.  All sites which maintain critical fish/wildlife habitat conservation areas, which are not mapped, shall be subject to critical fish/wildlife habitat conservation area review.

2.    The identification and location of habitats and species of local importance shall be based upon scientifically valid methods and studies, which may include materials submitted by the applicant, Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife priority habitats and species database maps, or other appropriate methods and studies.

3.    The approximate location and extent of these areas is displayed on inventory maps available at City Hall.  Maps and inventory lists are guides to the general location and extent of critical areas.  Critical areas not shown are presumed to exist, and are protected under all the provisions of this chapter.  In the event that the designations shown on the maps or inventory lists conflict with the site-specific conditions, site-specific conditions shall control. (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.402), 2007)

18.08.230 Performance standards.

A.    Wildlife and Fish Habitat Conservation Areas.

1.    Where a project is proposed within a wildlife and fish habitat conservation area, and habitat functions and values are likely to be impaired by the project, a habitat management plan will be required, unless the exception noted below is met.  The limits of development and other related activities within the conservation area shall be based on the recommendations of the plan.  The plan shall be prepared by a qualified professional.  However, a plan is not required if the applicant places a particular emphasis on protecting a conservation area by avoiding the impact caused by not taking a certain action(s) or part(s) of an action, or by minimizing impacts through limiting the magnitude of the action and its implementation.  If complex mitigation which requires the expertise of a qualified professional is necessary, a habitat management plan will be required.

2.    Activities may be permitted within a conservation area subject to conditions designed to avoid probable, significant adverse impacts to the conservation area and to protect the functions and values of the conservation area; provided, that the city may deny a project if probable significant impacts to the conservation area cannot be avoided or if critical area function and value cannot be protected with mitigation.

B.    Fish Habitat Conservation Areas.

1.    Standard Buffers.

a.    Buffers (measured horizontally from OHWM):

Type 1 and 2 Waters

200 feet

Type 3 Waters

150 feet

Type 4 Waters

50 feet

Type 5 Waters and other nontyped HCAs

25 feet

b.    Definition of “Waters.”  Streams are classified Type 1 to 5 for critical area protection purposes based on the water typing criteria in WAC 222-16-031, as currently enacted.  Artificially created structures, ditches, canals, ponds, irrigation return ditches, and stormwater channels shall not be considered a stream for purposes of this section.

2.    Riparian vegetation in buffers shall not be removed, with the exception that a view/access corridor to the OHWM may be cleared to a width not to exceed twenty-five feet if habitat values will not be impacted and/or mitigation will be unaffected.  If the functions and values of critical areas are impaired, mitigation will be imposed, such as widening the riparian buffer at the same location, or widening or enhancing the buffer at another location.

3.    Buffers shall be delineated on all permits.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.403), 2007)

18.08.240 Fish and wildlife mitigation.

Wildlife habitat management plans shall meet the following criteria:

A.    Plans shall be prepared by a qualified professional, at the expense of the applicant;

B.    Relevant background information shall be documented and considered;

C.    Critical fish/wildlife habitat conservation areas shall be delineated if applicable;

D.    The size, scope, configuration or density of new uses and developments within a core habitat and wildlife buffer zone shall be designated to protect threatened, endangered, or sensitive wildlife species, and habitats and species of local importance.  The timing and duration of uses and developments may be regulated to ensure that they do not occur during a time of year when species are sensitive to disturbance;

E.    Developments shall be generally discouraged within critical wildlife/fish habitat conservation areas.  Any development permitted shall be mitigated as outlined in Section 18.08.230(A) and (B).  Development may be conditionally authorized when the critical wildlife and fish habitat conservation area is inhabited seasonally; provided the development will have only temporary effects on the wildlife buffer zone and rehabilitation and/or enhancement will be completed before a particular species returns;

F.    If rehabilitation and enhancement actions are required, they shall be documented in the wildlife management plan and shall include a map and text;

G.    The plan shall include an analysis of the effect of the proposed use or activity upon critical wildlife and fish habitat conservation areas;

H.    The plan shall explain how the applicant will avoid, minimize or mitigate adverse impacts to critical wildlife and fish habitat conservation areas created by the proposed use or activity.  Mitigation measures within the plan may include, but are not limited to:

1.    Establishment of buffer areas;

2.    Preservation of critically important plants and trees;

3.    Limitation of access to habitat area;

4.    Seasonal restriction of construction activities;

5.    Conservation easements;

I.    The plan shall incorporate use of scientifically valid methods and studies in the analysis of data and field reconnaissance.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.404), 2007)

ARTICLE V. GEOLOGICALLY HAZARDOUS AREAS

18.08.250 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to provide standards for classification and designation of significant geologically hazardous areas; and provide guidance for reducing or mitigating hazards to public health and safety.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.501), 2007)

18.08.260 Classification and designation.

A.    All geologically hazardous areas shall be divided into one of the following risk categories:  erosion, landslide, seismic, volcanic, or mine hazard areas.

1.    Erosion.  Those areas identified as having slopes in excess of fifteen percent or soils rated by the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) as having moderate to very severe erosion potential.

2.    Landslide.  Those areas identified as subject to mass movements due to their geologic, topographic, and/or hydrologic factors.  Areas subject to land sliding are the following:

a.    Areas of historic failure of potentially unstable slopes;

b.    Areas with any combination of the following:

i.    Slopes of fifteen percent or greater;

ii.    Permeable soils frequently overlying impermeable surfaces or soils;

iii.    Springs or groundwater seepage;

c.    Any slope forty percent or greater and with a vertical relief on ten plus feet, except areas composed of consolidated rock;

d.    Slopes greater than eighty percent subject to rock fall during seismic shaking;

e.    Unstable areas resulting from stream incision, erosion, or undercutting;

f.    Any area located on an alluvial fan; or

g.    Slopes that are parallel to planes of weakness in subsurface materials such as bedding planes, fault planes, etc.

3.    Seismic.  The city of Goldendale is located within a Class Type C seismic zone, with no known active faults.  All new development shall conform to the applicable provisions of the International Building Code which contain structural standards and safeguards to reduce risks from seismic activity.

4.    Volcanic.  Volcanic risk is low, although ashfall could be expected during a volcanic event.

5.    Mines.  The likelihood of the presence of underground mines within the city is believed to be remote.

B.    Those lands which meet the established criteria for geologically hazardous areas are to be designated as such.  Geologically hazardous areas identified through the permitting process shall be mapped and shall provide guidance in the land use decision-making process.  All sites which maintain geologically hazardous areas, including those geologically hazardous areas which are not mapped, shall be subject to geologically hazardous areas review so stated in this section.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.502), 2007)

18.08.270 Performance standards.

A.    Upon receipt of a complete development application, USGS topographic maps and NRCS soil information shall be reviewed to determine if the proposed development is in a geologically hazardous area.  If the proposed site is in a geologically hazardous area, the applicant shall be responsible for securing the services of a professional engineer/geologist who shall provide information as follows:

1.    Maximum and average on-site slopes;

2.    Identification of groundwater seepage areas;

3.    Any known on-site landslide activity;

4.    Identification of any stream incision and/or erosion points; and

5.    The extent of any applicable alluvial fan.

B.    Proposed developments shall be designed in accordance with the requirements of the International Building Code as written now or hereafter amended when a geologically hazardous area is found on or near the proposed development.

C.    Development sites for new structures identified with intermittent or perennial stream-side incision or erosion points shall have all structures located a minimum of one hundred feet away from such points.

D.    Any disturbance to erosion hazard areas will require revegetation and stabilization with native plant materials.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.503), 2007)

18.08.280 Submittal requirements.

A.    All Geologically Hazardous Areas and Buffers.

1.    Indemnification.  An indemnification or hold harmless agreement shall be required for all projects in geologically hazardous areas and buffers except erosion hazard areas.  The form of agreement shall be approved by the city and executed prior to the commencement of construction or site alteration.

2.    Notice.  If no other public notice is required for a proposed development located in a landslide hazard area, a notice of intent to construct on a landslide hazard area shall be given.

3.    All reports or analyses required or prepared pursuant to this section shall be prepared, and shall meet the satisfaction of and be approved by the city prior to the commencement of any development activity.

4.    Mitigation Plans.  The city may determine that a mitigation plan is necessary.  The mitigation plan shall propose, and the city may approve, appropriate mitigation measures, which may include, among others, removal of groundwater, vegetation management, and/or construction of bulkheads or retaining walls.  No mitigation plan shall be approved that increases the risk of landslide or erosion on site or off site.  Bulkheads and retaining walls may be utilized as engineering solutions where it can be demonstrated that a structure will be more safely protected than without the use of such measures, and the resulting retaining wall is the minimum size necessary to protect the structure.  The mitigation plan shall be prepared by qualified professionals, which may include geotechnical engineers, hydrogeologists, arborists, and/or fisheries biologists, depending on specific circumstances and as deemed appropriate by the city.

B.    Erosion Hazard Areas.  An erosion control plan prepared by a duly licensed civil engineer shall be submitted to the city prior to the issuance of a clearing or grading permit.

C.    Landslide Hazard Areas.

1.    Erosion Control.  An erosion control plan prepared by a civil engineer shall be submitted to the city prior to the issuance of a clearing or grading permit.

2.    The applicant shall provide a geotechnical analysis containing information specified by the city, which concludes that the development proposal meets the standards of this section.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.504), 2007)

18.08.290 Development standards.

The city shall determine professionally acceptable levels of risk for all activities within geologically hazardous areas.  The applicant shall meet the following standards for all activities:

A.    The proposed activity shall not create a net increase in geological instability, either on or off site, which is defined as follows:

1.    The subject parcel shall not be less stable after the planned development than before; and

2.    The adjacent parcels shall not be less stable after the planned development than before.

B.    The proposed activity shall not increase the risk of life safety due to geological hazards above professionally acceptable levels.

C.    The proposed activity shall not increase the risk due to geological hazards above professionally acceptable levels for:

1.    Property loss of any habitable structures or their necessary supporting infrastructure on site; or

2.    Risk to any off-site structures or property of any kind.

D.    Proposed buildings shall be constructed using appropriate engineering methods that respond to the geologic characteristics specific to the site in order to achieve the highest standard of safety feasible.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.505), 2007)

18.08.300 Development design.

A.    There shall be no clearing, grading, or new construction within fifty feet of the edge of all slopes that are classified as geologically hazardous areas.  This fifty-foot area may be reduced only if the applicant provides expert verification by a geotechnical engineer, that demonstrates that the proposal will not increase slope instability, and that no other reasonable project alternative exists;

B.    All development proposals shall be designed to avoid impacts to the geologically hazardous areas.  The development shall be designed to minimize the footprint of building in other disturbed areas, minimize removal of vegetation, minimize topographic change, and retain open space to the maximum extent practicable;

C.    Development design shall utilize clustering, multi-level construction, and tiered foundations to the extent feasible to minimize impervious lot coverage, slope disturbance, and changes to the natural topography;

D.    Access shall be located in the least sensitive part of the site, and common access drives and utility corridors are required to the extent feasible;

E.    Roads, walkways and parking areas shall be designed to parallel the natural contours to the extent feasible;

F.    All proposed clearing and tree removal shall be marked in the field for inspection and approval prior to alteration of the site;

G.    Cut and fill slopes shall be prepared and maintained to control against erosion and instability; and

H.    Drainage and stormwater designs in zones of influence shall incorporate elements of low impact design, to the extent feasible, and shall be designed in such a manner that stormwater outlet discharges do not create additional impacts.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.506), 2007)

ARTICLE VI. AQUIFER RECHARGE AREAS

18.08.310 Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to provide standards for classification and designation of areas with a critical recharging effect on aquifers used for potable water and whose protection is necessary to public health and safety.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.601), 2007)

18.08.320 Classification and designation.

A.    Aquifer recharge areas that have a high susceptibility to aquifer contamination shall be designated as such on the basis of:

1.    Land use activities which pose a threat to aquifer quality; or

2.    Land use activities which pose a threat to community water systems; or

3.    Aquifers with characteristics conducive to contamination.

B.    Designated areas include wellhead protection areas, sole source aquifers, susceptible groundwater management areas, moderately or highly vulnerable areas, and moderately or highly susceptible areas.  Susceptibility can be estimated using soil permeability, geologic matrix (underlying soils), infiltration rate, and depth to groundwater.

C.    Those lands which meet the established criteria for aquifer recharge areas are to be designated as such.  Aquifer recharge areas identified through the permitting process shall be mapped and shall provide guidance in the land use decision-making process.  All sites which maintain aquifer recharge areas, including those aquifer recharge areas which are not mapped, shall be subject to aquifer recharge areas review as stated in this chapter.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.602), 2007)

18.08.330 Performance standards.

A.    Mitigation measures shall be utilized to minimize the risk of contamination. These will be tailored to each proposal but will be designed to ensure that development does not present a significant risk of aquifer recharge area contamination.  All hazardous materials must be handled to minimize risk of leakage or accidental spills, and emergency response plans must be prepared.

B.    The following performance standards shall apply to all regulated uses in areas designated with high susceptibility to aquifer contamination:

1.    Parcels requiring septic systems shall be subject to the minimum lot size requirement of the county health department, in order to prevent groundwater contamination;

2.    All new development activities shall comply with the requirements of the Washington State Department of Ecology, as they pertain to ground and surface water protection;

3.    The applicant shall comply with any state or federally required wellhead protection program for public water supplies;

4.    Wells shall be set back at least one hundred feet from adjacent property lines;

5.    Commercial and industrial uses which process, use, store or produce hazardous, toxic, or otherwise dangerous materials shall meet all applicable federal, state, and local regulations within any aquifer recharge area to prevent groundwater contamination; and

6.    Any application which utilizes or generates hazardous or toxic materials shall be required to comply with state and federal regulations pertaining to public health and safety.

C.    Specific Uses.

1.    Storage Tanks.  All storage tanks proposed in a critical aquifer recharge area must comply with local building code requirements and must conform to the following requirements:

a.    Underground Tanks.  All new underground storage facilities proposed for the storage of hazardous substances or hazardous wastes shall be designed and constructed in accordance with DOE requirements.

b.    Aboveground Tanks.  All new aboveground storage facilities proposed for the storage of hazardous substances or hazardous wastes shall be designed and constructed in accordance with DOE requirements.

2.    Vehicle Repair and Servicing.

a.    Vehicle repair and servicing must be conducted over impermeable pads and within a covered structure capable of withstanding normally expected weather conditions.  Chemicals used in the process of vehicle repair and servicing must be stored in a manner that protects them from weather and provides containment should leaks occur.

b.    No dry wells shall be allowed on sites used for vehicle repair and servicing.  Dry wells existing on the site prior to facility establishment must be abandoned using techniques approved by the State Department of Ecology prior to commencement of the proposed activity.

3.    Use of Reclaimed Water for Surface Percolation or Direct Recharge.  Water reuse projects for reclaimed water must be in accordance with the adopted water or sewer comprehensive plans that have been approved by the State Departments of Ecology and Health.

a.    Use of reclaimed water for surface percolation must meet the groundwater recharge criteria given in RCW 90.46.010(10) and 90.46.080(1).  The State Department of Ecology may establish additional discharge limits in accordance with RCW 90.46.080(2).

b.    Direct injection must be in accordance with the standards developed by authority of RCW 90.46.042.

4.    State and Federal Regulations.  The uses listed below shall be conditioned as necessary to protect critical aquifer recharge areas in accordance with the applicable state and federal regulations:

Activity

Regulations

Aboveground storage tanks

WAC 173-303-640

Animal feedlots

Chapters 173-216 and 173-220 WAC

Automobile washers

Chapter 173-216 WAC; WDOE WQ-R-95-56

Below-ground storage tanks

Chapter 173-360 WAC

Dangerous waste regulations

Chapter 173-360 WAC

Siting chemical treatment storage and disposal

WAC 173-303-282

Spills and discharges

WAC 173-303-145

Hazardous waste generators (boat repair, dry cleaners, furniture stripping, motor vehicle garages, printing shops, etc.)

WAC 173-303-170

Injection wells (dry wells)

Chapter 173-218 WAC; Federal 40 CFR Part 144 and 146

Junk and salvage yards

Chapter 173-303 WAC; WDOE 94-146

Oil and gas drilling

WAC 332-12-450; Chapter 173-218 WAC

On-site sewage systems (large scale)

Chapter 173-240 WAC

On-site sewage systems (<14,500 gpd)

Chapter 246-272 WAC; County Health Regulations

Pesticide storage and use

Chapters 15.54 and 17.21 RCW

Sawmills

Chapters 173-303 and 173- 304 WAC; WDOE 95-53

Solid waste handling and recycling

Chapter 173-303 WAC

Surface mining

Chapter 332-18 WAC

Wastewater application to land surface

Chapters 173-200 and 332-216 WAC; WQDOE

(Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.603), 2007)

ARTICLE VII. FREQUENTLY FLOODED AREAS

18.08.340 Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to provide standards for classification and designation of frequently flooded areas; and provide guidance for reducing or mitigating hazards to public health and safety.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.701), 2007)

18.08.350 Classification and designation.

A.    Frequently flooded areas shall be classified as all areas within the floodplain subject to a one percent or greater chance of flooding in a given year.  All lands, shorelines, and waters which are under the jurisdiction of the city of Goldendale and which are identified as within the one-hundred-year floodplain by the Federal Emergency Management Agency are designated frequently flooded areas.  Frequently flooded areas identified through the permitting process shall be mapped and shall provide guidance in the land use decision-making process.  All sites which maintain frequently flooded areas, including those frequently flooded areas which are not mapped, shall be subject to frequently flooded areas review so stated in this chapter.

B.    Classification for frequently flooded areas shall be consistent with the one-hundred-year floodplain designation of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Flood Insurance Program.  In addition, the following criteria shall be considered when designating and classifying these areas:

1.    Flooding impact to human health, safety, and welfare and to public facilities and services;

2.    Available documentation including federal, state, and local laws, regulations and programs, local maps, and federally subsidized flood insurance programs;

3.    The “floodplain” is defined as a channel of the stream and that portion of the adjoining area which is necessary to contain and discharge the base flood flow at build-out without any measurable increase in flood heights; and

4.    The effect of high water levels with strong winds and greater surface runoff caused by increasing impervious surfaces.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.702), 2007)

18.08.360 Performance standards.

Upon receipt of a complete development application, the flood information rate maps (FIRM) shall be reviewed to determine if the proposed development is in a frequently flooded area.  All frequently flooded area delineations, designations, surveys, reports, studies, plans, documents, etc., shall be performed by a qualified professional or firm.  If the proposed site is in a frequently flooded area, the applicant shall be responsible for securing the services of a professional engineer who shall provide information as follows:

A.    Identification of the one-hundred-year floodplain boundary on the site plan;

B.    Conform to the provisions of Chapter 15.48, Flood Damage Prevention; Title 17, Zoning; and the International Building Code; and

C.    Maintain predevelopment movement (volume and velocity) of surface waters and prevent the unnatural diversion of floodwaters into otherwise flood-free areas.  (Ord. 1366 §2(18.08.703), 2007)