Chapter 12.100


12.100.010    Authority and purpose.

12.100.020    Definitions.

12.100.030    Requirement for certificate of concurrency.

12.100.040    Concurrency test.

12.100.050    Exemptions from concurrency.

12.100.060    TAM standards.

12.100.070    Update of TAM.

12.100.080    Certificate of concurrency.

12.100.090    Fees.

12.100.100    Applicability.

12.100.110    Provision of needed transportation facilities.

12.100.120    Intergovernmental coordination.

12.100.130    Relationship to SEPA.

12.100.010 Authority and purpose.

(1) This chapter is enacted pursuant to City of Covington’s powers as a noncharter code city, RCW Title 35 and the Growth Management Act, RCW 36.70A.070.

(2) It is the purpose of this chapter to:

(a) Provide adequate levels of service on transportation facilities for existing use as well as new development in the City of Covington;

(b) Provide adequate transportation facilities that achieve and maintain City standards for levels of service as provided in the comprehensive plan, as amended; and

(c) Ensure that City level of service standards are achieved “concurrently” with development (as required by the Growth Management Act) by denying approval of development that would cause the level of service on transportation facilities to decline below City standards. Applicants for development may propose mitigation measures that will achieve and maintain the City’s standard for level of service. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.010))

12.100.020 Definitions.

(1) “Capital improvement program (CIP)” means the expenditures programmed by the City of Covington for capital purposes over the next six-year period in the CIP most recently adopted by the City Council.

(2) “Certificate of concurrency” means the document issued by the City indicating:

(a) The location or other description of the property on which the development is proposed;

(b) The number of development units and specific uses, densities, and intensities that were tested for concurrency and approved;

(c) The type of development approval for which the certificate of concurrency is issued;

(d) An effective date; and

(e) An expiration date.

Certificates may be conditional, unconditional, or extended, according to Department administrative practices described in the public rules for the program.

(3) “Committed network for the transportation adequacy measure” means the system of transportation facilities used to calculate the transportation adequacy measure to determine the level of service to transportation for a zone. The network includes transportation facilities that are needed to provide the level of service standard, including existing facilities and proposed facilities which are fully funded for construction in the most currently adopted six-year roads CIP or for which voluntary financial commitments have been secured. Projects to be provided by the State, cities or other jurisdictions may become part of the committed network upon decision of the Director.

(4) “Concurrency” means transportation improvements or strategies are in place at the time of development or that a financial commitment is in place to complete the improvements or strategies within six years needed to maintain the City level of service standards, according to RCW 36.70A.070(6).

(5) “Concurrency test” means the determination of an applicant’s impact on transportation facilities by the comparison of the level of service of the concurrency zone which includes the proposed development to the level of service standard for that zone. A concurrency test must be passed in order to obtain a certificate of concurrency.

(6) “Concurrency zone” means one of the zones depicted in the City of Covington mitigation payment and concurrency zone map as adopted and is on file with the City Clerk. The Public Works Director may change the boundaries of such zones by including such changes in the administrative rules for this title, filing such changes with the City Clerk, and giving public notice of such changes.

(7) “Department” means the City of Covington Department of Community Development or its successor agency.

(8) “Development” means specified improvements or changes in use designed or intended to permit a use of land which will contain more dwelling units or buildings than the existing use of the land, or to otherwise change the use of the land or buildings/improvements on the land in a manner that increases the amount of vehicle traffic generated by the existing use of the land, and that requires a development permit from the City of Covington. This definition shall not pertain to the rezoning of land or a UPD permit or a fully contained community.

(9) “Development approval” means any order, permit or other official action of the City granting, or granting with conditions an application for development, but not pertaining to the rezoning of land or a UPD permit or a fully contained community.

(10) “Development units” means the proposed quantity of development measured by dwelling units for residential development and square feet for nonresidential development, upon which are based the calculations of TAM for the determination of concurrency.

(11) “Financial commitment” consists of the following:

(a) Revenue designated in the most currently adopted CIP for transportation facilities or strategies needed in the committed network for the transportation adequacy measure to test for concurrency. The financial plan underlying the adopted CIP identifies all applicable and available revenue sources and forecasts these revenues through the six-year period with reasonable assurance that such funds will be timely put to such ends. Projects to be used in defining the committed network shall represent those projects which are fully funded for construction in the six years of the CIP. This commitment is annually reviewed through the annual budget process;

(b) Unanticipated revenue from Federal or State grants for which the City has received notice of approval; or

(c) Revenue that is assured by an applicant in a form approved by the City in a voluntary agreement.

(12) “Peak period” means the one-hour weekday period during which the greatest volume of traffic uses the street system identified separately for each roadway section. For concurrency purposes, this period shall be in the afternoon of a typical weekday. At the Director’s discretion, a different time period may be analyzed for intersection standards evaluation purposes.

(13) A “preapplication meeting” is a meeting between the applicant for a transportation concurrency certificate or its extension and the staff of the Community Development Department and others, according to that Department’s rules and administrative procedures held for the purpose of determining the requirements to file a development permit application.

(14) “Reservation” and “reserve” means development units are set aside in the City’s concurrency records in a manner that assigns the units to the applicant and prevents the same units being assigned to any other applicant.

(15) “Transportation facilities” means principal, minor and collector arterial roads, streets, State highways, freeways, intersections, transit and high occupancy vehicle facilities, and nonmotorized facilities (i.e., for bicycles or pedestrians). Transportation facilities include any such facility owned, operated or administered by the State of Washington and its political subdivisions, including the County and cities.

(16) “Transportation strategies” means transportation demand management strategies and other techniques or programs that reduce single-occupant vehicle commute travel and that are approved by the Department. Strategies may include but are not limited to vanpooling, carpooling, shuttle transportation, and public transit. (Amended at request of department 2/08; Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.020))

12.100.030 Requirement for certificate of concurrency.

Each applicant for a development approval, except as provided in CMC 12.100.050(1), shall present a certificate of concurrency. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.030))

12.100.040 Concurrency test.

(1) Applications for certificates of concurrency, and the resulting concurrency test, shall be completed prior to application for development approval. For a UPD permit or a fully contained community, applications for certificates of concurrency, and the resulting concurrency test, shall be completed prior to issuance of a UPD permit or a permit for a fully contained community and their certificates shall not need extensions; provided, that the subject developments are progressing towards completion and have not been terminated.

(2) Applications for certificates of concurrency shall be submitted to the Community Development Department on forms provided by the Department.

(3) The City shall perform a concurrency test for each application for a certificate of concurrency.

(4) The City shall conduct the concurrency test first for the earliest completed application received. Subsequent applicants will be tested in the same order as the City receives completed applications.

(5) The City shall not issue a certificate of concurrency unless there are adequate transportation facilities to meet the level of service standards for existing and approved uses and the impacts of the proposed development.

(6) In conducting the concurrency test, the City shall use standard trip generation rates, such as those reported by the Institute of Transportation Engineers. An applicant may submit as a part of the application for certification of concurrency a calculation of alternative trip generation rates for the proposed development. The Director shall review the alternate calculations and make a written determination within 10 business days of submittal as to whether such calculation will be used in lieu of the standard trip generation rates. The Director shall adjust the trip generation forecast of proposed development to account for allowances determined pursuant to the mitigation payment system’s procedures for transportation strategies, including transportation demand management reductions.

(7) If the level of service is equal to or better than the adopted standards, the concurrency test is passed, and the applicant shall receive a certificate of concurrency.

(8) If the level of service is worse than the adopted standards, the concurrency test is not passed, and the applicant shall select one of the following options:

(a) Accept a 90-day reservation of transportation facilities that are available, and within the same 90-day period amend the application to reduce the need for transportation facilities to the units that are available, or voluntarily arrange for the transportation facilities or strategies needed to achieve concurrency. The 90-day period shall begin no later than 14 days after receipt of the notification of denial. Reduction of the need for transportation facilities may be achieved through one or a combination of the following: reducing the size of the development (so long as minimum density requirements continue to be met); reducing trip generation by the original proposed development; phasing of the development to match future transportation facility construction; providing transportation strategies, when the Department determines that such strategies will be reasonably sufficient as to reduce traffic to a level which meets the concurrency standard or threshold; or

(b) Accept the denial of an application for a certificate of concurrency; or

(c) Appeal the denial of the application for a certificate of concurrency, pursuant to the provisions of CMC 12.95.040 and 12.95.050. The City shall reserve any available development units during the appeal.

Acceptance of the 90-day period shall not impair the applicant’s future right to a formal appeal at a later time.

(9) The concurrency test shall be performed only for the specific property, uses, densities and intensities based on information provided by the applicant and included in the certificate of concurrency. Changes to the uses, densities, and intensities that create additional impacts on transportation facilities shall be subject to an additional concurrency test. (Amended at request of department 2/08; Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.040))

12.100.050 Exemptions from concurrency.

(1) The following applications for development approval are exempt from the concurrency test, and may commence development without a certificate of concurrency:

(a) Any development that is categorically exempt from environmental review, except short plats;

(b) Renewals of previously issued, unexpired permits;

(c) Expansions or phases of projects that were disclosed by the applicant and subject to a concurrency test as part of the original application (i.e., phased development); provided, that a certificate of concurrency was issued for the expansion or subsequent phase;

(d) Any development that will have no transportation impact, and that will not change the traffic volumes and flow patterns in the p.m. peak travel period, as determined by the Director.

(2) In order to monitor the cumulative effect of exempt development approvals on the level of service of transportation facilities, the City shall add the impacts of exempt development approvals to the transportation adequacy measure and all other relevant concurrency monitoring records. Development units shall be allocated to vested development based on the amount such vested developments are likely to need on an annual basis. The allocation shall be based on each vested development’s historical building patterns over recent years. If no such historical record or pattern can be determined for a vested development, then the allocation to each year of the first six years shall be one-sixth of the construction activity remaining to be built in the development. All allocations of facility capacity to vested development shall be subtracted from the remaining capacity available for development that is not vested. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.050))

12.100.060 TAM standards.

(1) The following are the TAM standards for each transportation service area, as adopted in the the City of Covington comprehensive plan, provided there are no unfunded critical links affecting the concurrency zone:

Transportation Service Area 3    0.89 D

(Full service area)

In the event that a concurrency zone is affected by one or more unfunded critical links, the concurrency zone shall be considered to fail the standard for the zone.

(2) A certificate of concurrency shall not be issued to any proposed development if the standards in this section are not achieved and maintained for the development as a whole, or the portion of the development in each transportation service area in which the development is proposed. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.060))

12.100.070 Update of TAM.

Levels of service shall be monitored and the traffic model for the transportation adequacy measure shall be updated at least once per year. The monitoring and update process shall include traffic volumes, approval of additional development, completion of previously approved development, improvements to transportation facilities, and the effect of transportation strategies. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.070))

12.100.080 Certificate of concurrency.

(1) A certificate of concurrency shall be issued by the Director or the Director’s designee. Issuance of a certificate creates a rebuttable presumption that the proposed development satisfies the concurrency requirements of this chapter. The determination of concurrency shall be final at the time of development approval. The issue of concurrency may be raised as part of the review process for the development application for which the certificate of concurrency was issued.

(2) Upon issuance of a certificate of concurrency, the City shall reserve development units on behalf of the applicant, and indicate the reservation on the certificate of concurrency.

(3) A certificate of concurrency shall expire if the development permit for which the concurrency is reserved is not applied for within 180 days of issuance or extension of the certificate of concurrency. A certificate of concurrency shall be required in application for a formal subdivision plat and for a nonresidential short plat and for a commercial building permit.

(4) A certificate of concurrency shall be valid for the development permit application period and subsequently for the same period of time as the development approval which is issued pursuant to the certificate of concurrency. If the development approval does not have an expiration date, the certificate of concurrency shall be valid for five years from the date of issuance.

(5) A certificate of concurrency shall be valid for an initial 180-day period and may be extended one time for an additional 180 days by the Director; provided, that the holder of the original certificate or his agent has, before the time of expiration of the original certificate, scheduled a preapplication meeting with the Community Development Department, has requested such extension in writing to the Director and has paid the extension fee. A further 90-day extension of a certificate of concurrency by the Director shall be made only under extraordinary circumstances, and shall require the receipt of a current certificate of water availability.

(6) A certificate of concurrency can be extended to remain in effect for the life of each subsequent development approval for the same parcel, as long as the applicant obtains the subsequent development approval prior to the expiration of the earlier development approval. No development shall be required to hold more than one valid certificate of concurrency, unless the applicant or subsequent owner proposes changes or modifications to the property location, density, intensity or land use that creates additional impacts on transportation facilities.

(7) A certificate of concurrency runs with the land and is valid only for subsequent development approvals for the same parcel, and to new owners of the original parcel for which it was issued. A certificate of concurrency cannot be transferred to a different parcel and shall be limited to uses and intensities for which it was originally issued.

(8) Upon subdivision of a parcel that has obtained a certificate of concurrency, the City may replace the certificate of concurrency by issuing a separate certificate of concurrency to each subdivided parcel, assigning to each a pro rata portion of the development units of the original certificate. The Director may modify such assignment upon petition of the owner.

(9) A certificate of concurrency shall expire if the underlying development approval expires or is revoked or denied by the City.

(10) All development approvals that voluntarily provide funding for one or more transportation facilities by the development or entities other than the City shall be conditioned to require that prior to the issuance of any final development approval the availability of such transportation facilities or financial arrangements has been confirmed.

(11) Upon annexation of any development, the provisions for the certificate of concurrency shall be enforced by interlocal agreement with the County. (Amended at request of department 2/08; Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.080))

12.100.090 Fees.

(1) The City shall charge an administrative fee to help defray costs associated with the review and determinations to a traffic concurrency application for conducting the concurrency test in accordance with CMC 12.95.020(6), and an additional fee for the one-time extension of a valid certificate. Such fees shall be set forth in the current fee resolution and shall not be refundable.

(2) The following types of development are exempt from the concurrency test fee:

(a) All applications that are exempt from the concurrency test pursuant to CMC 12.100.050; and

(b) Development by municipal, County, State, and Federal governments, and special districts (as that term is defined by State law). (Ord. 20-07 § 39; Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.090))

12.100.100 Applicability.

The provisions and fees of this chapter shall apply to every application for a transportation concurrency certificate and to every request for the extension of a valid certificate received by the Department. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.092))

12.100.110 Provision of needed transportation facilities.

(1) The City shall determine that transportation facilities are available to support development at adopted TAM standards within six years of the impacts of such development. The City shall require at the time the certificate of concurrency is issued that:

(a) The necessary facilities and services are in place at the time a development approval is issued; or

(b) The necessary facilities will be complete within six years of development approval:

(i) The necessary facilities are under construction at the time a development approval is issued, and financial commitment is in place to complete the necessary facilities within six years of issuance of development approval; or

(ii) The necessary facilities are the subject of a binding executed contract of development agreement which provides for the actual construction or financial commitment of the required facilities, guarantees that the necessary facilities will be in place within six years of issuance of development approval, and provides that the capital project is included in, or will be added to, the committed network for the transportation adequacy measure, the transportation element of the comprehensive plan, and the six-year capital improvements program; or

(iii) The City has in place financial commitments to complete the necessary public facilities or strategies within six years of issuance of development approval; or

(c) Development approvals are issued subject to a binding executed contract, development agreement or other binding condition which provides that any facilities and strategies necessary to meet concurrency requirements after issuance of development approval will be in place within six years of occupancy and use of the development.

(2) The certificate of concurrency shall be binding on the City at such time as the applicant provides assurances, acceptable to the City in form and amount, to guarantee the applicant’s pro rata share of the cost of capital improvements needed for concurrency as determined by the mitigation payment system, CMC Title 19.

(3) The Director may make adjustments to the committed network for TAM for corrections, updates, and modifications concerning costs, revenue sources, acceptance of facilities pursuant to dedications which are consistent with the adopted comprehensive plan, or the date of construction (so long as it is completed within the six-year period) of any facility enumerated in the capital improvements program.

(4) The City shall identify projects in the adopted six-year CIP required for the committed network for the transportation adequacy measure and any capital improvements for which a binding agreement has been executed with another party. (Ord. 16-16 § 2; Ord. 06-13 § 2 (Exh. A); Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.100))

12.100.120 Intergovernmental coordination.

The City may enter into agreements and continue existing agreements with other local governments and the State of Washington to coordinate the imposition of TAM standards, impact fees and other mitigation for transportation concurrency. Existing agreements shall continue in force until modified or completed.

(1) The City may apply transportation standards, fees and mitigations to development in the City that impacts other local governments and the State of Washington. Development approvals by the City may include conditions and mitigations that will be imposed on behalf of, and implemented by other local governments and the State of Washington.

(2) The City may receive impact fees or other mitigations based on or as a result of development proposed in other jurisdictions that impacts the City. The City may agree to accept and implement conditions and mitigations that are imposed by other jurisdictions on development in their jurisdiction.

(3) No fees or mitigations for transportation facilities of other agencies will be required by the City unless an agreement has been executed between the City and the affected agency. The agreement shall specify the fee schedule and level of service standards to be used by the City and the affected agency, which standards shall be consistent with the City’s comprehensive plan and, if different than the standards adopted pursuant to this title, shall be adopted by ordinance. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.110))

12.100.130 Relationship to SEPA.

A determination of concurrency shall be an administrative action of the City of Covington that is categorically exempt from the State Environmental Policy Act. (Ord. 38-02 § 2 (12.70.120))