Chapter 17.45


17.45.010    Administration.

17.45.020    Board of adjustment.

17.45.030    Membership and term of the board of adjustment.

17.45.040    Planning commission established – Membership.

17.45.050    Planning commission duties.

17.45.060    Vacancies on board of adjustment and planning commission.

17.45.070    Attendance of board of adjustment and planning commission.

17.45.080    Meetings, officers, records and quorum.

17.45.090    Reports.

17.45.100    Expenditures – Budget.

17.45.110    Appeal from ruling of the board of adjustment.

17.45.120    Form of petitions, applications and appeals.

17.45.130    Filing fees.

17.45.140    Notice of public hearing.

17.45.150    Time limit on a permit for a conditional use or a variance.

17.45.160    Planning commission quorum requirements.

17.45.010 Administration.

The mayor shall appoint a zoning official who shall have the authority and duty to enforce this title. An appeal from a ruling by that person may be made only to the board of adjustment. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.010.]

17.45.020 Board of adjustment.

There is established the board of adjustment (hereinafter referred to as the “board”). [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.020.]

17.45.030 Membership and term of the board of adjustment.

The board of adjustment shall consist of five members who shall serve without compensation. The members shall be appointed by the mayor with the approval of the council. The initial membership shall consist of one member appointed for one year, one member appointed for two years, one member appointed for three years and two members appointed for four years. The members of the board of adjustment existing at the time this title is adopted shall submit a list of recommended names to the mayor from which the mayor may make the appointments. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.030.]

17.45.040 Planning commission established – Membership.

Pursuant to the authority conferred by Chapter 35A.63 RCW, there is created a planning commission (hereinafter referred to as the “commission”) composed of five members, appointed by the mayor and confirmed by the majority of the city council, broadly representative of the community. The members shall be appointed to a term of six years or until their successors are appointed and confirmed. Members shall be selected without regard to political affiliation and serve without compensation. [Ord. 1254 § 1.0, 1997; Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.040.]

17.45.050 Planning commission duties.

The commission shall perform the following duties:

(1) Serve as an advisor to the city council in order to promote the orderly physical development and growth of the city;

(2) Prepare a comprehensive plan for the orderly physical and social development of the city. The intent and purpose of the comprehensive plan shall include and be designed to:

(a) Provide a quality environment for all residents of the community,

(b) Encourage the most appropriate use of land throughout the community,

(c) Lessen traffic congestion and accidents,

(d) Secure safety from fire,

(e) Provide adequate light and air,

(f) Prevent overcrowding of land,

(g) Avoid undue concentration of population,

(h) Provide for the preservation of clean air, clean water, and natural, scenic, historic and aesthetic qualities of the environment,

(i) Promote coordinated development of undeveloped areas,

(j) Encourage the formation of neighborhood and community units,

(k) Secure an appropriate allotment of land area in new developments for all requirements of community life,

(l) Conserve and restore natural beauty and other natural resources,

(m) Facilitate the adequate provision of transportation, and

(n) Establish and maintain an effective mechanism for citizen input to the decision process.

The comprehensive plan shall become the official plan of the city when approved by the city council and filed with the county auditor. The commission may recommend to the city council the plan prepared as a whole or may recommend parts of the plan by successive recommendations, the parts corresponding with geographic or political sections, divisions or subdivisions of the city, or with functional subdivisions of the subject matter of the plan. The commission shall comply with requirements of notice and public hearing provided by law in initiating and recommending the whole or parts of the comprehensive plan;

(3) Recommend, or prepare and recommend, for the adoption by the city council, regulations, amendments, extensions or additions to such regulations or plans for the physical development of the city in the interest of health, safety, morals or general welfare of the community, including, but not limited to, the following:

(a) The use of buildings and land for residence, trade, industry and other purposes,

(b) The height, the number of stories, size, construction and design of buildings and other structures,

(c) The size of the yards, courts and other open spaces on the lot or tract,

(d) The density of population,

(e) The setback of buildings along property lines, highways, parks or other public water frontages, and

(f) The subdivision and development of land;

(4) Review and make recommendations to the city council on plats, plans or subdivisions, or dedications of land situated within the boundaries of the city or proposed for annexation to the city, subject to approval by the city council; hold public hearings on proposed plats and subdivisions; establish, subject to approval by the city council, such regulation and standards as are necessary to constitute a guide in determining whether or not the proposed plat or subdivision is in harmony with the comprehensive plan;

(5) Act as a research and fact-finding agency of the city. The commission shall cause to be made such surveys, analyses, studies and reports generally authorized or requested by the city council;

(6) Perform advanced planning for public works programs and the long-range capital improvement plan;

(7) Establish such other work project priorities as the city council may direct;

(8) Review, discuss and analyze such work products and projects as may be referred to the commission by the city council or staff;

(9) Form, subject to advanced approval of the city council, ad hoc committees within as well as outside its membership, to study specific problems or projects which may arise from time to time.

The administrative staff of the city as assigned by the mayor shall provide staff assistance and serve as liaison to the planning commission, and shall also serve to facilitate communication by the planning commission to the city council. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.050.]

17.45.060 Vacancies on board of adjustment and planning commission.

In the event vacancy occurs in the members of the board or the planning commission, the mayor shall fill such vacancy by appointment for the balance of the term vacated, subject to the approval of the council. Members may be removed from the board or the commission by the mayor, subject to the approval of the council. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.060.]

17.45.070 Attendance of board of adjustment and planning commission.

The board or commission may, by a majority vote, recommend to the mayor removal of an appointed member upon such grounds as inefficiency, neglect of duty or malfeasance in office. Unexcused absence by any board or commission member from four consecutive meetings shall constitute grounds for removal, and absences by any board or commission member from six convened meetings, excused or unexcused, occurring within a 12-month period shall likewise be grounds for removal. Workshops shall be excluded from the definition of meetings for the purposes of this section. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.070.]

17.45.080 Meetings, officers, records and quorum.

The board and commission shall, at its first regular meeting of February of each year, elect its own chairperson and vice-chairperson and create and fill such other offices as it may determine it requires. The board or commission shall hold at least one regular meeting in each month of the year, unless canceled by the chairperson as a result of having no business to conduct or for other good cause. It shall adopt rules for transaction of business, and it shall keep a record of its meetings, resolutions, transactions, findings and determinations, which records shall be open to public inspection. A majority of the membership of the board and commission shall constitute a quorum for transaction of business. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.080.]

17.45.090 Reports.

The board and commission, at or before its first regular meeting of February each year, shall make a full report in writing to the city council of its transactions during the preceding year, with general recommendations as it may deem proper. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.090.]

17.45.100 Expenditures – Budget.

The expenditures of the board and commission, exclusive of gifts, shall be limited to appropriations made to the city planning office by the city council for the planning function of the city. The services and facilities of the city planning office shall be utilized by the board and commission in performing its duties, except as the services of outside consultants may be obtained for a temporary period of time when authorized by the city council. All programs requiring appropriations shall be submitted through the city planning office budget. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.100.]

17.45.110 Appeal from ruling of the board of adjustment.

An action or ruling by the board of adjustment pursuant to this title may be appealed to the superior court within 15 days after the board has made its decision. Written notice of the appeal shall be filed with the superior court clerk. If the appeal is not filed with the superior court clerk within the 15-day period, the decision of the board of adjustment shall be final. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.110.]

17.45.120 Form of petitions, applications and appeals.

All petitions, applications and appeals provided for in this title shall be made on forms prescribed by the city. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.120.]

17.45.130 Filing fees.

The city council may require the payment of filing fees to cover the cost to the city of the administrative details of processing amendments to this title, conditional use applications and variance applications. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.130.]

17.45.140 Notice of public hearing.

When the planning commission, the city council or the board of adjustment is required to hold a public hearing, notice of the hearing shall be given in the following manner:

(1) Each notice of hearing on a conditional use shall be published in the official newspaper of the city prior to the date of hearing.

(2) Each notice of hearing on a conditional use shall be published in the official newspaper of the city at least 10 days prior to the date of hearing.

(3) Each notice of hearing on an appeal authorized by this title or on an application for variance shall be published in the official newspaper of the city prior to the date of hearing. In addition, at least 10 days prior to the date of the hearing, notice of the hearing shall be posted on the property for which the application is made.

(4) Failure of a person to receive a notice prescribed in this section shall not impair the validity of the hearing.

(5) A public hearing may be recessed in order to obtain additional information or to serve further notice upon property owners or persons who may be interested in the proposal being considered. Upon recessing, the time and date when the hearing is to be resumed shall be announced. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.140.]

17.45.150 Time limit on a permit for a conditional use or a variance.

Authorization of a conditional use or a variance shall be void after six months unless substantial construction pursuant thereto has taken place. However, the board of adjustment may extend this period at the request of the applicant. [Ord. 1138 § 1, 1992. Code 1966 § 17.10.150.]

17.45.160 Planning commission quorum requirements.

If the planning commission is unable to establish a quorum for the purpose of conducting planning commission business because of membership vacancies, the city council of the city shall perform the planning commission duties and functions until such time as the planning commission is again made up of at least three members. [Ord. 1264 § 1.0, 1997. Code 1966 § 17.10.160.]