Chapter 16.07
SUBDIVISION VACATIONS AND ALTERATIONS

Sections:

16.07.010    Purpose.

16.07.020    Administration.

16.07.030    Procedure.

16.07.040    Additional notice of public hearing.

16.07.050    Requirements for a complete application.

16.07.060    Criteria for approval.

16.07.070    Time limitation for final decision.

16.07.080    Recording.

16.07.090    Alterations to a short subdivision.

16.07.010 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to regulate and allow vacations or alterations of approved short plats, full subdivision plats, and binding site plans. It does not allow modification or revision of recorded boundary line adjustments (BLA), preliminary subdivision approvals, or preliminary binding site plans. The procedure for vacation of plats does not apply to the vacation or alteration of any plat of state-granted tide or shore lands.

When the vacation application is specifically for a city street, the procedures for street vacations in Chapter 35.79 RCW shall be utilized for the street vacation. When the application is for the vacation of the plat or binding site plan together with the roads or streets, the procedure for vacation in this chapter shall be used, but vacations of streets subject to RCW 35.79.035 may not be made under this procedure. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.020 Administration.

The director is authorized and directed to administer the provisions of this chapter. The authority to approve, approve with conditions, or deny an approved plat or a final binding site plan vacation or alteration is granted to the hearing examiner after a public hearing. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.030 Procedure.

Subsections (A) through (I) of this section shall be followed in the processing of approved plat or final binding site plan vacation or alteration applications and administrative appeals shall be heard by city council. See EMC 16.07.090 for alterations to a short subdivision.

A. EMC 18.40.150, Determination of complete application;

B. EMC 18.40.180, Notice of application;

C. Chapter 20.05 EMC, SEPA (if required);

D. EMC 18.30.050, determination of consistency;

E. EMC 18.40.190, Notice of public hearing;

F. EMC 18.40.100(K), preparation of staff report;

G. EMC 18.40.100(L), Public Hearing;

H. EMC 18.40.100(Q) through (R), notice of decision; and

I. EMC 18.40.100(T), hearing examiner appeal. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.040 Additional notice of public hearing.

In addition to the notice required in EMC 16.07.030(E), the city shall provide notice of an application for a full subdivision or binding site plan vacation or alteration to all owners of property within the subdivision not included in the application, as provided for in RCW 58.17.080 and 58.17.090. The notice shall establish the date of the public hearing. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.050 Requirements for a complete application.

A. The following materials shall be submitted to the city for a complete full subdivision or binding site plan vacation application:

1. Date, name, address, and telephone number of the applicant or property owner;

2. The reason(s) for the proposed vacation;

3. Signatures of all parties having an ownership interest in the subdivision or that portion of the subdivision proposed to be vacated;

4. If the plat or binding site plan is subject to restrictive covenants which were filed at the time of the approval of the plat, and the application for the vacation would result in the violation of a covenant, the application shall include an agreement signed by all parties subject to the covenants, which provides that the parties agree to terminate or alter the restrictive covenants to accomplish the purpose of the vacation of the plat or portion thereof;

5. Acknowledgment that if any street is included in the application for a vacation, that the applicant shall be required to pay the amount contemplated in RCW 35.79.030, if the vacation is granted pursuant to EMC 12.05.015;

6. A copy of the approved plat or binding site plan sought to be vacated, together with all plat or binding site plan amendments or vacations recorded since the date of the original approval; and

7. A recent (120 days) title report for each of the properties affected by the vacation that confirms the owner(s) signing the application hold title of the lands described and shown in the application area.

8. If the vacation is for a portion of the plat or binding site plan, the applicant must demonstrate that the partial vacation will not violate the terms of plat or binding site plan approval or this chapter.

9. Electronic version of all submittal documents, in a format acceptable to the city.

10. An application fee.

B. The following materials shall be submitted to the city for a complete full subdivision or binding site plan alteration application:

1. Date, name, address, and telephone number of the applicant or property owner;

2. The reason(s) for the proposed alteration;

3. Signatures of the majority of those persons having an ownership interest in the lots, tracts, parcels, sites, or divisions in the plat or binding site plan proposed to be altered;

4. If the plat or final binding site plan is subject to restrictive covenants which were filed at the time of the approval of the plat or final binding site plan, and the application for the alteration would result in the violation of a covenant, the application shall contain an agreement signed by all parties subject to the covenants; providing, that the parties agree to terminate or alter the relevant covenants to accomplish the purpose of the alteration of the plat or final binding site plan;

5. A copy of the approved plat or final binding site plan sought to be altered, together with all recorded plat or binding site plan amendments or vacations; and

6. A recent (120 days) title report for each of the properties affected by the alteration that confirms the owner(s) signing the application hold title of the lands described and shown in the application area.

7. If the alteration is for a portion of the plat or final binding site plan, the applicant must demonstrate that the alteration will not violate the terms of plat or final binding site plan approval, or this chapter.

8. An electronic version of all submittal documents, in a format acceptable to the city.

9. An application fee.

C. The following materials shall be submitted to the city for a complete short plat alteration:

1. Date, name, address, and telephone number of the applicant or property owner;

2. The reason(s) for the proposed alteration;

3. Signatures of the majority of those persons having an ownership interest in the lots, tracts, parcels, sites, or divisions in the short plat proposed to be altered;

4. If the short plat is subject to restrictive covenants which were filed at the time of the approval of the short plat, and the application for the alteration would result in the violation of a covenant, the application shall contain an agreement signed by all parties subject to the covenants; providing, that the parties agree to terminate or alter the relevant covenants to accomplish the purpose of the alteration of the short plat;

5. A copy of the approved short plat sought to be altered, together with all previously recorded short plat amendments; and

6. A recent (120 days) title report for each of the properties affected by the alteration that confirms the owner(s) signing the application hold title of the lands described and shown in the application area.

7. If the alteration is for a portion of the short plat, the applicant must demonstrate that the alteration will not violate the terms of short plat approval, or this chapter.

8. An electronic version of all submittal documents, in a format acceptable to the city.

9. An application fee. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.060 Criteria for approval.

A. Vacation Criteria for a Full Subdivision or Binding Site Plan.

1. Vacation. The plat or binding site plan vacation may be approved, approved with conditions or denied after a written determination is made whether the public use and interest will be served by the vacation. The decision shall be supported by written findings and conclusions. If any portion of the land contained in the plat or binding site plan was dedicated to the public for public use and benefit, such land, if not already deeded to the city, shall be deeded to the city as a condition of approval, unless the decision maker makes findings that the public use would not be served in retaining title to those lands. Easements established by a dedication are property rights that cannot be extinguished or altered without the approval of the easement owner or owners, unless the plat, binding site plan or other document creating the dedicated easement provides an alternative method or methods to extinguish or alter the easement.

2. Street Vacation. When the vacation application is specifically for vacation of a city street, the procedures in EMC 12.05.015 and the procedures in Chapter 35.79 RCW shall be utilized. When the procedure is for the vacation of a plat or binding site plan together with the streets, the vacation procedure in this chapter shall be used, but this procedure cannot be used to vacate streets if prohibited under RCW 35.79.035 or the city’s street vacation ordinance.

3. Title to Vacated Property. Title to the vacated property shall vest with the rightful owner as shown on the county records. If the vacated land is land that was dedicated to the public, for public use other than a road or street, and the decision maker has found that retaining title to the land is not in the public interest, title thereto shall vest with the person(s) owning the property on each side thereof, as determined by the decision maker. When the road or street that is to be vacated is contained wholly within the plat or binding site plan, and is part of the boundary of the subdivision or binding site plan, title to the vacated road or street shall vest with the owner(s) of property contained within the vacated subdivision or binding site plan.

B. Alteration Criteria for a Full Subdivision or Binding Site Plan.

1. The alteration may be approved, approved with conditions or denied after a written determination is made whether the public use and interest will be served by the alteration. The decision shall be supported by written findings and conclusion.

2. If any land within the alteration area is part of an assessment district, any outstanding assessments shall be equitably divided and levied against the remaining lots, parcels or tracts, or be levied equitably on the lots resulting from the alteration.

3. If any land within the alteration contains a dedication to the general use of persons residing within the subdivision, such land may be altered and divided equitably between the adjacent properties. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.070 Time limitation for final decision.

A full subdivision or binding site plan vacation or alteration application shall be approved, approved with conditions, or denied within 120 days after a complete application has been submitted, unless the applicant consents in writing to an extension of the 120-day time period. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.080 Recording.

After approval of the alteration or vacation, the city shall order the applicant to produce a revised drawing of the approved full subdivision or binding site plan alteration or vacation. The council shall authorize the mayor to sign the approved alteration or vacation. The city shall file the approved alteration or vacation with the county auditor at the applicant’s cost. The alteration or vacation shall replace and supersede the existing lawful plat or final binding site plan for the property. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).

16.07.090 Alterations to a short subdivision.

A. General Requirements.

1. Short subdivision alterations apply to those elements which are common to the entire plat.

2. An alteration to a portion of a recorded short plat replaces and supersedes the portion of the original short plat that is contained in the alteration.

3. Additional lots cannot be added except pursuant to RCW 58.17.060.

B. Required Written Findings and Determinations.

1. The director shall inquire into the public use and interest proposed to be served by the establishment of the alteration, if any.

2. The application shall follow the Process II administrative action procedures pursuant to EMC 18.40.070.

3. A proposed short subdivision alteration shall not be approved unless the director makes written findings that:

a. The alteration conforms to the requirements of Chapter 58.17 RCW and the provisions of this title;

b. The items to be altered do not conflict with the goals and policies of the comprehensive plan, applicable community plan(s), and any applicable EMC or state laws; and

c. The public use and interest will be served as a result of the proposed alteration.

C. Approval.

1. The director has the authority to approve or deny any proposed short subdivision and may impose additional or altered conditions and requirements as necessary to assure that the proposal conforms to the comprehensive plan, applicable community plan(s), other applicable EMC provisions, state laws, and the criteria contained in this section.

2. Approvals shall include a note that states: “This altered short plat supersedes Lot(s) _________ of Short Plat No. _____” and a brief written narrative explaining what is being altered and the reason for such alteration, including identification of the specific change(s) to the recorded document.

3. Appeals from the decision of the director or designee will be heard by the hearing examiner.

D. Recording.

1. After approval of the alteration, the city shall order the applicant to produce a final drawing for signatures and recording.

2. The same department signature blocks shall be provided on the proposed plat alteration as those listed on the original document.

3. The final document for recording shall be signed by the property owner(s).

4. The city shall file the approved alteration with the county auditor at the applicant’s cost. The alteration shall replace and supersede the existing lawful short plat for the property. (Ord. 18-523 § 1).