Chapter 15.20
PROCEDURES FOR PROCESSING LAND USE PERMIT APPLICATIONS

Sections:

Article I. Permit Application and Submittal

15.20.010    Preapplication review.

15.20.020    Land use permit application.

15.20.030    Review for counter complete status.

15.20.040    Review for technically complete status.

15.20.050    Determination of completeness or incomplete application.

Article II. Integrated Permit Process

15.20.060    One project review process.

15.20.070    Interpretations of land use regulations.

Article III. Time Limits for Permits
and Permit Processing

15.20.080    Review Process II and III.

15.20.090    Determining time limits.

15.20.100    Exceptions.

15.20.110    Time limit for Review Process II and III permits.

Article IV. Shoreline Permit Requirements

15.20.120    Processing.

15.20.130    Shoreline permit applications.

15.20.140    Permit issuance.

15.20.150    Time requirements of shoreline permits.

15.20.160    Process for revisions to shoreline permits.

15.20.170    Enforcement provisions for shoreline regulations.

Article V. Land Division Permit Requirements

15.20.180    Procedures generally.

15.20.190    Requirements applicable to all land divisions.

15.20.200    Supplemental requirements.

15.20.210    Time periods and expiration of land division approvals.

15.20.220    Resubdivision restrictions for short subdivisions.

Article VI. Planned Action Project Review

15.20.230    Planned action review process.

15.20.240    Verification.

15.20.250    Mitigation, public notice, and appeals.

Article VII. SEPA Procedures

15.20.260    Applicability.

15.20.270    Applicability to public proposals.

15.20.280    Timing and integration of SEPA.

15.20.290    Time limit for determining categorically exempt proposals.

15.20.300    Use of categorical exemptions.

15.20.310    Environmental checklist.

15.20.320    Mitigated DNS.

15.20.330    Optional DNS process.

15.20.340    Mitigated DNS issued under WAC 197-11-340(2) or 197-11-355.

15.20.350    Preparation of EIS—Additional considerations.

15.20.360    Public awareness of availability of EIS.

Article I. Permit Application and Submittal

15.20.010 Preapplication review.

A.    The purpose of preapplication review is to acquaint city staff with a sufficient level of detail about the proposed project to enable staff to advise the applicant accordingly. The purpose is also to acquaint the applicant with the applicable requirements of this title and other applicable city regulations. Further, the preapplication review is intended to provide the applicant with preliminary direction regarding the required content of the proposed application. However, the conference is not intended to provide an exhaustive review of all the potential issues that a given application could raise. The preapplication review does not prevent the city from applying all relevant laws to the application and does not constitute an approval of the project.

B.    Preapplication review is required for Review Process II, III, and V applications, unless the ordinance or the director exempts the application in question or the applicant submits a completed form provided by the city requesting waiver of preapplication review, and such waiver is granted by the director.

C.    To initiate preapplication review, an applicant shall submit a completed request for preapplication meeting form provided by the planning department for that purpose, any required fee, preliminary site plan and all other information required by the city.

D.    The preapplication conference shall be scheduled to be held no more than twenty-one calendar days after the city accepts the application for preapplication review.

E.    Preapplication review does not vest an application nor does it constitute approval. (Ord. 2975-07 § 6, 2007; Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 1(A), 2001)

15.20.020 Land use permit application.

A.    Content. Applications shall be submitted upon forms provided by the director. An application shall identify all city land use permits required by the applicable development regulations as they apply to the proposed land use action. Applications may be filed by a property owner or an agent acting on his/her behalf if an affidavit of ownership signed by the owner is filed with the application. At a minimum, applications shall include the following information:

1.    A completed land use permit application packet containing all required forms, information, and any special studies or information necessary to process the application indicated by the city in a preapplication meeting including, for example, where applicable to a project, traffic analysis, wetland and critical area studies, biological assessment; soil, stormwater and utility analyses.

2.    Environmental checklist (SEPA) or other SEPA documentation including supporting information, when required under Chapter 197-11 WAC and the SEPA ordinance (Chapter 20.04).

3.    Complete and accurate special studies, reports, information, maps, plans, or other documentation required by the director to support the application and to enable the city to evaluate consistency and the environmental impacts of the proposal. When identified in the application packet, a supplemental narrative statement describing how the proposal meets the required evaluation criteria.

4.    A statement that the applicant is the owner of the property affected by the application or is authorized by the owner to submit the application. For land divisions, a declaration of ownership form signed by the owner is required.

5.    A written designation by the applicant of a single person or entity to receive determinations and notices required and issued as part of the project review process.

6.    A property and/or legal description of the site for all applications required by the pertinent land use permit application packet and applicable development regulations. For land divisions, a legal description of the property proposed to be adjusted.

7.    An assessor map showing location of the property.

8.    A complete and accurate site plan or proposed land use plans as described in the city’s land use permit application packet. For land divisions, see plat and map requirements in Article V of this chapter.

9.    A complete and accurate mailing list, as required by the pertinent land use permit application packet and development regulations.

10.    Filing fee.

B.    Fees. Fees shall be submitted with applications in accordance with the current land use development permit fee ordinance adopted by the city council. An application shall not be considered complete until the required fee has been submitted.

C.    Modification or Waiver. The director may waive application requirements that are clearly not necessary to show an application complies with relevant regulations, review criteria and standards and may modify application requirements based on the nature of the proposed application, development site, or other factors.

D.    Supplemental Application Requirements. Additional application requirements for shoreline permits, land division applications, and planned actions are set forth in this chapter in Articles IV, V, and VI, respectively. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 1(B), 2001)

15.20.030 Review for counter complete status.

Before accepting an application for technically complete status, the city shall determine whether the application is counter complete.

The city shall decide whether an application is counter complete when the application is accepted, typically “over the counter.”

An application is counter complete if the city finds that the application purports and appears to include the information required in the permit application, any information necessary to process the application as indicated by the city in a preapplication meeting; and all required filing fees.

If the city decides the application is counter complete, then the application shall be accepted for review for technically complete status. If the city decides the application is not counter complete, then the city shall not accept the application, but shall return the application and identify in writing what is needed to make the application counter complete. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 1(C), 2001)

15.20.040 Review for technically complete status.

Before accepting an application for processing, the city shall determine that the application is technically complete. A technically complete application contains all information required under Section 15.20.020. The city shall issue a notice of completeness or notice that the application is deemed incomplete as set forth in Section 15.20.050. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 1(D), 2001)

15.20.050 Determination of completeness or incomplete application.

A.    Within twenty-eight days after receiving a project permit application, the city shall mail or personally provide a determination to the applicant which states either:

1.    That the application is complete; or

2.    That the application is incomplete and what is necessary to make the application complete.

B.    To the extent known by the city, other agencies that may have jurisdiction over the application shall be identified in the city’s completeness determination.

C.    An application is complete for purposes of this section when it meets the procedural submission requirements set forth in Section 15.20.020 and is sufficient for continued processing even though additional information may be required or project modification may be undertaken subsequently. The determination of completeness shall not preclude the city from requesting additional information or studies either at the time of the notice of completeness or subsequently if new information is needed or substantial changes in the proposed action occur.

The determination of completeness may include the following as optional information:

1.    A preliminary determination of those development regulations that will be used for project mitigation;

2.    A preliminary determination of consistency, with the comprehensive plan or subarea plan, and applicable development regulations; or

3.    Other information deemed appropriate by the director.

D.    An application shall be deemed complete under this section if the director, within twenty-eight days of receiving the application, does not mail or provide in person a written determination to the applicant that the application is incomplete.

E.    If the director determines that an application is not complete, then within twenty-eight days after receiving the application, the director shall place in the mail to the applicant a written statement that the application is incomplete based on a lack of information and listing what is required to make the application technically complete; provided, however, an applicant may request or agree to an extension of the twenty-eight-day completeness review period.

F.    If the applicant receives a determination of the city that an application is not complete, the applicant shall have ninety days to submit the necessary information to the city. The director may grant an extension to the ninety-day time deadline for filing the required information. Within fourteen days after an applicant has submitted the additional information requested in a notice of incompleteness, the city shall make a new determination of completeness as described herein, and notify the applicant in the same manner.

G.    If the required information is not submitted by the date specified and the director has not extended that date, the director may take one of the following actions as deemed appropriate by the director:

1.    Reject and return the application and eighty percent of the application fee(s) and mail to the applicant a written statement which lists the remaining additional information needed to make the application technically complete; or

2.    Issue a decision denying the application, based on a lack of information; or

3.    Allow the applicant to start the technically complete review process a second time by providing the required missing information by a date specified by the review authority, in which case the review authority shall retain the application and fee pending expiration of that date, or a technical review of the application as amended by that date.

H.    A determination of completeness for a project subject to environmental review under SEPA, including planned actions (which do not require threshold determinations), may be withdrawn in the following circumstances:

1.    There are substantial changes to a proposal so that the proposal is likely to have significant adverse environmental impacts;

2.    There is significant new information indicating, or on, a proposal’s probable significant adverse environmental impacts; or

3.    The determination of completeness was procured by misrepresentation or lack of material disclosure.

In the event that a determination of completeness is withdrawn and the responsible official determines that additional information is needed to process the application, the applicant shall be so notified, and the one-hundred-twenty-calendar-day period stayed pending receipt of the requested information by the city. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 1(E), 2001)

Article II. Integrated Permit Process

15.20.060 One project review process.

The city shall provide a project review process that is integrated with the SEPA review process to the maximum extent feasible. For projects that require more than one project permit approval, the SEPA threshold determination, and all land use permit decisions shall be made concurrently to the extent permissible by law. To promote integration and avoid duplication, it is the intent of this process that any studies be used to fulfill all regulatory needs for which they provide adequate information, regardless of the specific law or requirement that caused their preparation. Likewise, it is the intent of this process to avoid duplication under different laws or regulations of measures to avoid or otherwise mitigate the same project impacts.

A.    Individual Procedure Option. Under the individual procedure option, an applicant may request: (1) processing land use permits separately; or (2) processing land use and all other project permits including construction permits in a single consolidated project review process, which may include a request for a designated permit coordinator.

As set forth in Section 15.16.030, an application that involves two or more Review Process I, II, or III procedures shall be processed collectively under the highest numbered procedure required for any part of the application unless the applicant requests that the application be processed under the individual procedure option. Based upon the specific content of the application and the required permits, the director may grant or deny a request to process the application under individual procedures for separate permit decisions. If an applicant elects a single consolidated project review process for all city permits, as provided by RCW 36.70B.120, the director may determine the specific scope and procedures for the project review on the proposed action consistent with this title and other applicable city requirements.

B.    Timing of Notice of Application and SEPA Threshold Determination. The director shall integrate the timing of the notice of application with environmental review under SEPA as follows:

1.    Except for a determination of significance, the director may not issue a threshold determination (where required), or issue a decision or a recommendation on a project permit until the expiration of the public comment period on the notice of application.

2.    For all Review Process III applications, if the city’s threshold determination requires public notice under the SEPA ordinance (Chapter 20.04), the city shall issue its threshold determination at least fifteen days prior to the hearing examiner’s open public hearing. As a general matter, unless the applicant prefers otherwise, the city should try to issue the SEPA threshold determination sufficiently in advance of the open public hearing to allow any administrative appeals to be filed and consolidated with the hearing on the application, so as to avoid postponing a hearing for which public notice has already been given.

C.    Combined Decision on Review Process I and II Applications. For all applications that involve two or more Review Process I or II decisions, the director shall issue a single decision on the applications. The decision may be the permit; provided, however, an applicant may request an interpretation of applicable provisions of the city’s development regulations under Section 15.20.070, and the director may issue a written determination prior to issuance of a decision on the land use permits.

D.    Combined Report on Review Process I through III Applications. For all applications involving one or more Review Process I or II applications plus one or more Review Process III applications, the city shall issue a single report stating:

1.    All the interpretations, recommendations or decisions made as of the date of the report on all project permits included in the project review process that do not require an open public hearing; and

2.    Staff recommendation on land use permits that do require an open public hearing before the examiner.

The report shall identify documents that contain an analysis of impacts resulting from the development and state any mitigation required or proposed under the development regulations or the agency’s SEPA authority. If a SEPA threshold determination or other SEPA environmental document (such as an environmental impact statement or addendum) has not been issued previously, the report shall include or append them.

E.    Combined Hearings. The director may combine any hearing on a project permit with any hearing that may be held by another local, state, regional, federal, or other agency; provided, that the hearing is held within the geographic boundary of the city. Hearings shall be combined if requested by an applicant, as long as the joint hearing can be held within the time periods specified in this title or the applicant agrees to the schedule in the event that additional time is needed in order to combine the hearings.

F.    Cooperation on Joint Hearings. The director shall cooperate to the fullest extent possible with other agencies in holding a joint hearing if requested to do so, as long as:

1.    The city is not expressly prohibited by statute from doing so;

2.    Sufficient notice of the hearing is given to meet each of the agency’s adopted notice requirements as set forth in statute, ordinance, or rule; and

3.    The agency has received the necessary information about the proposed project from the applicant to hold its hearing at the same time as the city’s hearing. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 2(A), 2001)

15.20.070 Interpretations of land use regulations.

Any person may request an interpretation of applicable provisions of city land use requirements or development regulations as part of the project review process. Further, the director is authorized to issue interpretations of the land use and development regulations as necessary and to promulgate rules and procedures as consistent with the terms of this title. Such interpretations shall constitute Review Process I decisions. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 2(B), 2001)

Article III. Time Limits for
Permits and Permit Processing

15.20.080 Review Process II and III.

Except as otherwise provided in this title or by state law, the city shall provide a notice of decision as specified in Chapter 15.24 on all Review Process II and III applications within one hundred twenty days after the city notifies the applicant that the application is complete. The city shall meet the accountability requirements of Section 15.24.280 if a notice of decision is not issued within one hundred twenty days. (Ord. 2975-07 § 7, 2007: Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 3(A), 2001)

15.20.090 Determining time limits.

In determining the number of days that have elapsed after the city has notified the applicant that the application is complete, the following periods shall be excluded:

A.    Any period during which the applicant has been requested by the director to correct plans, perform required studies, or provide additional required information. The period shall be calculated from the date the city notifies the applicant of the need for additional information until the earlier of the date the city determines whether the additional information satisfies the request for information or fourteen days after the date the information has been provided to the local government;

B.    If the city determines that the information submitted by the applicant under subsection A of this section is insufficient, it shall notify the applicant of the deficiencies and the procedures under subsection A of this section shall apply as if a new request for studies had been made;

C.    Any period during which an environmental impact statement is being prepared following a SEPA determination of significance;

D.    Any period during which the applicant has requested an interpretation of applicable provisions of the city code and development regulations;

E.    Any period for which a threshold determination requires further information from the applicant and/or consultation with other agencies with jurisdiction, as determined by the responsible official, in which case the running of the one-hundred-twenty-calendar-day period shall be stayed until the required information and/or consultation is provided;

F.    Any period for which a SEPA threshold determination requires further studies, including field investigations initiated by the city;

G.    Any time limits set forth in this section shall not apply to withdrawal of SEPA threshold determinations (DS, DNS) where such withdrawals are made in accordance with WAC 197-11-340 and 197-11-360;

H.    Any period for administrative appeals of project permits or SEPA determinations; and

I.    Any extension of time mutually agreed upon by the applicant and the city. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 3(B), 2001)

15.20.100 Exceptions.

The time limit requiring a final decision within one hundred twenty days of the notice of application on a Review Process II or III decision does not apply if the land use permit application:

A.    Requires an amendment to the comprehensive plan or a development regulation;

B.    Requires approval of a new fully contained community as provided in RCW 36.70A.360, or the siting of an essential public facility as provided in RCW 36.70A.200;

C.    Is substantially revised by the applicant, in which case the new one-hundred-twenty-day time period shall start from the date at which the revised project application is determined to be complete; or

D.    Results in a determination of completeness (of the application) being withdrawn under the determination of completeness or incomplete application, Section 15.20.050. (Ord. 2975-07 § 8, 2007: Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 3(C), 2001)

15.20.110 Time limit for Review Process II and III permits.

If a complete application has not been filed for a building permit or equivalent construction permit within eighteen months on a project for which a land use permit has been granted under Review Process II or III, and an extension has not been granted:

A.    The land use permit shall be deemed to be terminated, except where a time limit on the land use permit is otherwise established by federal or state law, city ordinance, or an executed development agreement.

B.    If the permittee requests an extension in writing not later than eighteen months from the land use permit date, the director may grant a six-month extension.

For any reapplication, the city may use the existing SEPA determination or may require new or additional environmental documents as provided by WAC 197-11-600.

In lieu of the above provisions, the following shall apply and be effective through December 31, 2014. If a complete application has not been filed for a building permit or equivalent construction permit within twenty-four months on a project for which a land use permit has been granted under Review Process II or III, and an extension has not been granted:

A.    The land use permit shall be deemed to be terminated, except where a time limit on the land use permit is otherwise established by federal or state law, city ordinance, or an executed development agreement.

B.    If the permittee requests an extension in writing not later than twenty-four months from the land use permit date, the director may grant a twelve-month extension. Not more than two twelve-month extensions may be granted by the director. Provided, however, to qualify for an extension, the permittee’s project must comply with the land use regulations in effect at the time of the extension request. Further, an additional SEPA review will be required should the SEPA responsible official determine that any changes result in impacts not previously addressed under SEPA.

For any reapplication, the city may use the existing SEPA determination or may require new or additional environmental documents as provided by WAC 197-11-600. (Ord. 3303-12 § 2, 2012: Ord. 3118-09 § 1, 2009: Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 3(D), 2001)

Article IV. Shoreline Permit Requirements

15.20.120 Processing.

Shoreline permits are processed under Review Process II or III or combined with project review under other review processes, as provided in previous sections of this title. This article identifies specific procedures and permit requirements that also must be met for shoreline permit applications. The definitions contained in Section 33D of the zoning code (shoreline overlay district) apply to this article. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 4, 2001)

15.20.130 Shoreline permit applications.

Shoreline permit applications shall meet the requirements of the Joint Aquatic Review Project Application (JARPA) forms, if applicable to the project, and the information required by the planning department for shoreline permits. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 4(A), 2001)

15.20.140 Permit issuance.

A.    Letter of Exemption. Whenever a development is determined by the city to be exempt from substantial development permit requirements and the development is subject to a United States Corps of Engineers Section 10 permit under the River and Harbor Act of 1899, or a Section 404 permit under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1972, the director shall prepare a letter addressed to the applicant and the Department of Ecology, exempting the development from the shoreline permit requirements of this chapter. This exemption letter shall be substantially as described in WAC 173-27-050.

B.    When Construction Authorized. Development under a shoreline permit shall not begin and shall not be authorized until twenty-one days from the date of filing, or until all review proceedings, initiated within twenty-one days from the date of such filing, have been terminated, except as provided in RCW 90.58.140(5)(b) and (c).

For purposes of a substantial development permit, “date of filing” means the date the actual receipt of the decision by the Department of Ecology. For purposes of any permit that requires a variance or a conditional use, the “date of filing” means the date a decision by the Department of Ecology is transmitted to the city of Everett.

In addition, each permit for a substantial development, conditional use, or variance issued by the city should contain a provision that construction is not authorized until twenty-one days from the date of filing, or until all review proceedings initiated within twenty-one days from the date of such filing have been terminated, except as provided in RCW 90.58.140(5)(b). Absence of the provision in a shoreline permit shall not affect enforcement of this requirement.

C.    Conditions on Shoreline Permits. In granting or extending a permit, the director or examiner may attach conditions or modifications and restrictions regarding the location, character or other features of the proposed development as is necessary to make the permit compatible with the criteria set forth in the shoreline master program and this title.

D.    Other Applicable Requirements. Issuance of a shoreline permit does not exempt the applicant from meeting requirements in other agency permits, procedures and regulations. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 4(B), 2001)

15.20.150 Time requirements of shoreline permits.

The time requirements in subsections A and B of this section shall apply to all shoreline permits, including substantial development permits, variances and conditional uses, unless a different time requirement is specified in the permit as provided in subsection C of this section. The time frames established in subsections A and B of this section do not include the time during which a use or activity was not actually pursued due to the pendency of administrative appeals, or legal actions or due to the need to obtain any other government permits and approvals for the development that authorize the development to proceed, including all reasonably related administrative or legal actions on any such permit or approvals.

A.    Construction must be commenced or, where no construction activities are involved, the use or activity shall be commenced within two years of the effective date of a shoreline permit. The city may, at its discretion, extend the two-year time period for a reasonable time based on reasonable factors, if a request for extension has been filed before the expiration date and notice of the proposed extension is given to parties of record and to the Department of Ecology.

B.    If a project for which a shoreline permit has been granted under these procedures has not been completed within five years after the effective date of the permit, if a request for extension has been filed before the expiration date and notice of the proposed extension is given to parties of record and to the Department of Ecology, the permit shall, at the end of the five-year period, be reviewed and, upon a showing of good cause, the city shall do either of the following:

1.    Extend the permit for one year; or

2.    Terminate the permit.

C.    Upon a finding of good cause, based on the requirements and circumstances of the project proposed and consistent with the policy and provisions of the master program and the Act, the city may apply different time limits from those set forth in subsections A and B of this section. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 4(C), 2001)

15.20.160 Process for revisions to shoreline permits.

When an applicant proposes substantive changes to the design, terms or conditions of a project from that which is approved in a permit issued under any review process, the applicant shall submit detailed plans and text to the director describing the proposed changes in relation to the original permit. Changes are substantive if they materially alter the project in a manner that relates to its conformance to the terms and conditions of the permit, the master program and/or the policies and provisions of Chapter 90.58 RCW. Changes that are not substantive in effect do not require approval of a revision.

A.    For revisions not requiring a conditional use permit or variance, if the director determines that the proposed changes are within the scope and intent of the original permit, the director shall approve a revision. The revised permit shall become effective immediately. The approved revision along with copies of the revised site plan and text as necessary to clearly indicate the authorized changes, and the final ruling on consistency with this section, shall be submitted to the Department of Ecology, the Attorney General, and to persons who received a copy of the original notice of decision for the application under this title.

B.    For revisions requiring a conditional use permit or variance, if the director determines that the proposed changes are within the scope and intent of the original permit, the director shall submit the revision to the Department of Ecology for approval, approval with conditions, or denial, and shall indicate that the revision is being submitted under the requirements of WAC 173-27-100(6). The Department of Ecology shall render and transmit to the city and the applicant its final decision within fifteen days of the date of the department’s receipt of the submittal from the city. The city shall notify parties of record of the department’s final decision. The revised permit is effective upon final action by the Department of Ecology. Appeals shall be in accordance with the appeals section of this title, Chapter 15.24, Article IV.

C.    For purposes of this section, “within the scope and intent of the original permit” means all of the following:

1.    No additional over water construction is involved except that pier, dock, or float construction may be increased by five hundred square feet or ten percent from the provisions of the original permit, whichever is less;

2.    Ground area coverage and height may be increased a maximum of ten percent from the provisions of the original permit;

3.    The revised permit does not authorize development to exceed height, lot coverage, setback, or any other requirements of the applicable master program except as authorized under a variance granted as the original permit or a part thereof;

4.    Additional or revised landscaping is consistent with any conditions attached to the original permit and with the applicable master program;

5.    The use authorized under the original permit is not changed; and

6.    No increased adverse environmental impact will be caused by the project revision.

D.    If a revision to a permit is authorized after the original permit expired, the purpose of such revisions shall be limited to authorization of changes which are consistent with this section and which would not require a permit for the development or change proposed under the terms of Chapter 90.58 RCW, WAC 173-27-110, or the city’s shoreline master program. If the proposed change constitutes substantial development, then a new permit is required.

E.    If the proposed changes or the sum of the proposed revision and any previously approved revisions are not within the scope and intent of the original permit, the applicant shall apply for a new shoreline permit in the manner provided for in this chapter.

F.    An application for a new permit may use or rely upon previous environmental review and supporting studies (such as biological assessments), as provided by the SEPA ordinance (Chapter 20.04). (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 4(D), 2001)

15.20.170 Enforcement provisions for shoreline regulations.

The city adopts by reference the enforcement provisions of WAC 173-27-240 through WAC 173-27-300. Further, any person, firm or corporation who violates any provision of the city’s shoreline regulations shall be subject to the city’s civil enforcement procedures set forth in Chapter 1.20. The enforcement provisions and procedures provided herein are not exclusive and the city is authorized to pursue any remedy it deems appropriate or is otherwise provided by law. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 4(E), 2001)

Article V. Land Division Permit Requirements

15.20.180 Procedures generally.

This article identifies specific procedures and requirements that apply to land division applications. Section 15.04.020 authorizes the director to promulgate rules for the implementation and administration of this title, including application forms (Section 15.20.020). These rules may include detailed map and related application and filing requirements for land divisions. Applicants shall comply with these rules in order to file complete applications and to establish final land divisions. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 5, 2001)

15.20.190 Requirements applicable to all land divisions.

A.    Applications. All land division applications shall include the following:

1.    The application materials as specified in Article I of this chapter, including application forms or checklists provided by the city.

2.    A plat or map drawn to the specifications set forth in the “City Procedures for Plat, Map and Related Filing Requirements for Land Division Applications.”

3.    Supplemental maps, site plans, and other information required for the type of land division, as set forth in the “City Procedures for Plat, Map and Related Filing Requirements for Land Division Applications.”

4.    A site plan for easement access lots, panhandle lots, and for any lots with proposed setback modifications and/or lot variances.

5.    A survey conducted by or under the supervision of a registered licensed land surveyor in the state of Washington, in accordance with the “Survey” section of Title 18 (see land division evaluation criteria and development standards).

6.    A certificate, not older than thirty days, from a title company is required as specified below. The applicant shall be responsible for updating the title report to ensure that it is current as of the time of final plat or short plat review. This report must confirm that the title of the lands as described and shown on the plat or short plat is in the name of the owners signing the plat or short plat map.

a.    For subdivision, cluster subdivision, or short subdivision applications, a subdivision, cluster subdivision or short subdivision certificate;

b.    For subdivision or short subdivision alteration or vacation applications, an alteration or vacation certificate;

c.    For binding site plans, a binding site plan certificate confirming that the title of the lands as described and shown on the binding site plan are in the name of the owners signing the binding site plan; and

d.    For boundary line adjustments, a boundary line adjustment certificate.

B.    Director’s Determination on Restrictive Covenants. The director is authorized to determine whether language noted on the face of the final recorded subdivision or short subdivision plat map may constitute a condition for purposes of a revision or a restrictive covenant for purposes of an alteration. For purposes of meeting the requirements of this title, Title 18, Land Division, and RCW 58.17.215, any restrictive covenant that has not been imposed by the city shall not be subject to the requirements of the subdivision and short subdivision alteration and vacation review procedures of this title.

C.    Notice of Correction. The director may authorize corrections to the recorded final division map or other documents required by the city. The city will provide the applicant with the appropriate notice of correction form. It is the applicant’s responsibility to provide all necessary maps or documents and pay all required fees and record the corrections as necessary. For the purpose of this title, a correction is the act of correcting an error on a map or document to bring it into conformity with the standards of this title or applicable survey standards as required by state law.

D.    Withdrawal of Preliminary or Final Approvals. Except for formal subdivisions as provided by RCW 58.17.170, if a division of land or boundary line adjustment application was procured by misrepresentation, lack of material disclosure or erroneous information, or if there was deficient public notice as a direct result of the applicant or based on erroneous information or, if in the opinion of the director, a substantial change in conditions of approval has occurred and construction has not commenced, the city or hearing examiner may withdraw its approval of the project and require the applicant to correct the application. If the approval is withdrawn, the city or the hearing examiner shall issue a new decision on the application consistent with the review processes and standards of this title. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 5(A), 2001)

15.20.200 Supplemental requirements.

Supplemental requirements for certain Review Process I land divisions (minor amendments to land divisions, boundary line adjustments, and binding site plans with previously approved site plans) are as follows:

A.    Criteria for Minor Amendment. For the purposes of this title, a minor amendment shall meet the following criteria:

1.    The proposal represents a minor adjustment of lot lines or lot frontage that does not increase or decrease said lot lines and/or frontage in excess of ten percent;

2.    The proposal does not result in substantial changes in the design or location of access, parking, circulation, drainage or public utility improvements;

3.    The proposal does not result in additional lots or potential number of dwelling units;

4.    The proposal would not modify or be in conflict with any of the conditions of preliminary approval;

5.    In the opinion of the director, the proposal would not have an adverse effect on other lots within the project or on adjacent properties; and

6.    The proposal is consistent with Titles 18, 19, 20 and other applicable city code provisions and standards.

B.    Approval of Adjacent Owners is Not Required for Minor Amendments. The approval of other property owners within the proposed project is not required on the final division map or other documents if the city approves a minor amendment.

C.    When an Amendment Does Not Qualify as a Minor Amendment. If the city determines that any proposed amendments are not minor, the project shall be processed as required for the original application meeting all the requirements of this title, including providing public notice to all property owners within the original project area.

D.    Binding Site Plans with Previously Approved Site Plans. The following supplemental information shall be submitted with an application for a binding site plans with previously approved site plan:

1.    The approved site plan with a copy of the corresponding decision and project numbers;

2.    The SEPA threshold determination and corresponding checklist submitted for the approved project; and

3.    A proposed or approved phasing plan.

E.    Boundary Line Adjustments. Boundary line adjustment applications shall submit a declaration of legal documentation form. Requirements for final recording of boundary line adjustments shall be specified in rules for the administration and implementation of this title. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 5(B), 2001)

15.20.210 Time periods and expiration of land division approvals.

A.    Expiration of Preliminary Subdivision or Cluster Subdivision or Cluster Short Subdivision Approval. Final subdivision or cluster subdivision or cluster short subdivision approval must be obtained within seven years of the date of preliminary subdivision approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or before December 31, 2014, and within five years of the date of preliminary approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or after January 1, 2015, after which time the preliminary approval will be void. An extension may be granted by the city for one year if the applicant has attempted in good faith to submit the final plat within the five-year time period; provided, however, that the applicant files a written request with the director requesting the extension at least thirty days before expiration of the five-year period.

B.    Expiration of Preliminary Short Subdivision or Preliminary Binding Site Plan Approval. Final short subdivision or final binding site plan approval must be obtained within seven years of the date of preliminary approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or before December 31, 2014, and within five years of the date of preliminary approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or after January 1, 2015, after which time the preliminary approval will be void. An extension may be granted by the city for one year if the applicant has attempted in good faith to submit the final short plat or binding site plan within the five-year time period; provided, however, that the applicant files a written request with the director requesting the extension of at least thirty days before the expiration of the five-year period.

C.    Expiration of Preliminary Subdivision Alteration or Vacation Approval. Final subdivision alteration or vacation approval must be obtained within seven years of preliminary subdivision alteration or vacation approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or before December 31, 2014, and within five years of the date of preliminary approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or after January 1, 2015, after which time the preliminary approval will be void. An extension may be granted by the city for one year if the applicant has attempted in good faith to submit the final plat alteration or vacation within the five-year time period; provided, however, the applicant must file a written request with the director requesting the extension at least thirty days before expiration of the five-year period.

D.    Expiration of Preliminary Short Subdivision Alteration or Vacation Approval. Final short subdivision alteration or vacation approval must be obtained within seven years of preliminary short subdivision alteration or vacation approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or before December 31, 2014, and within five years of the date of preliminary approval if the date of preliminary approval is on or after January 1, 2015, after which time the preliminary short subdivision alteration or vacation approval will be void. No extension may be granted by the city to the applicant.

E.    Expiration of Approval for a Binding Site Plan with a Previously Approved Site Plan. Final binding site plan approval must be obtained within the time frames established for the previously approved site plan. If the binding site plan with the previously approved site plan is totally constructed, the time frame shall be three years from the date the city notifies the applicant that the application is complete, after which time the binding site plan approval will be void. No extension may be granted by the city to the applicant.

F.    Expiration of Boundary Line Adjustment Approval. The applicant must submit and complete all required documents as specified by this title within six months following the date the applicant is notified that the boundary line adjustment would be approved upon submittal of all the required final documents for recording. Failure to submit and complete the required documents within the six-month period will result in the application becoming void. No time extension will be granted; the final required documents must be recorded within the above stated time frame.

G.    Valid Land Use for Subdivision. As required by RCW 58.17.170, a subdivision shall be governed by the terms of the approval of the final plat, and any lots created thereunder shall be a valid land use notwithstanding any change in zoning laws for a period of seven years from date of filing if the date of filing is on or before December 31, 2014, and for a period of five years from the date of filing if the date of filing is on or after January 1, 2015, unless the city council finds that a change in conditions in the subdivision creates a serious threat to the public health or safety. (Ord. 3333-13 § 1, 2013: Ord. 3154-09 § 1, 2009; Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 5(C), 2001)

15.20.220 Resubdivision restrictions for short subdivisions.

A.    Five-Year Restriction. Land within an approved short subdivision shall not be resubdivided for a period of five years from the date of final approval of the short subdivision without the submission and approval of a final subdivision under all provisions of this title concerning the subdivision of land into ten or more lots, tracts or parcels.

B.    Nine-Lot Restriction. When the original short subdivision contains nine or less lots, the above restrictions shall not apply to the creation of additional lots, not exceeding a total of nine. If the number exceeds nine, a new application must be filed and processed. After five years, further division may be permitted when otherwise consistent with the regulations of the city.

C.    Withdrawal of Application. Where there have been no dedications to the public and no sales of any lots in a short subdivision, nothing contained in this section shall prohibit an applicant from completely withdrawing his entire short subdivision application and thereafter presenting a new application. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 5(D), 2001)

Article VI. Planned Action Project Review

15.20.230 Planned action review process.

The review process for a project that is proposed as a planned action shall be determined by the permits required for the planned action. Because an environmental impact statement will previously have been prepared, review of a project proposed as a planned action is intended to be simpler and more focused than for other projects. A planned action includes a type of project action, or a subsequent project that implements an adopted subarea plan, master planned development, or phased project, that is designed by ordinance or resolution as a planned action and meets the criteria in RCW 43.21C.031(2)(a). (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 6(A), 2001)

15.20.240 Verification.

A project proposed as a planned action shall be reviewed for consistency with the comprehensive plan and adopted planned action ordinance and for compliance with applicable development regulations and city ordinances.

To determine whether a proposed action qualifies as a planned action, planned action project review shall include:

A.    Verification that the project meets the description in, and will implement any applicable conditions or mitigation measures identified in, the designating ordinance or resolution; and

B.    Verification that the probable significant adverse environmental impacts of the project have been adequately addressed in the prior environmental impact statement through review of an environmental checklist or modified environmental checklist form provided by the city for this purpose as allowed by WAC 197-11-172 and 197-11-315. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 6(B), 2001)

15.20.250 Mitigation, public notice, and appeals.

All projects processed as planned actions shall comply with mitigation requirements set forth in applicable development regulations and city ordinances and the adopted planned action ordinance or resolution. Through the local project review process, the city may place conditions on the project in order to mitigate nonsignificant impacts. Public notice and appeal procedures for projects that qualify as planned actions shall follow the requirements for the project permit. If notice is required, the notice shall state that the project has qualified as a planned action. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 6(C), 2001)

Article VII. SEPA Procedures

15.20.260 Applicability.

Many of the land use permit applications addressed in this title will be subject to the requirements of the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA). This title provides for and requires an integrated SEPA/project permit review process (see Article II of this chapter). This article contains specific SEPA procedures and requirements that apply to applications subject to environmental review under SEPA. This article shall be interpreted and implemented in conjunction with the city’s SEPA ordinance (Chapter 20.04). (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7, 2001)

15.20.270 Applicability to public proposals.

The procedures in this article also apply to planning, decisionmaking, and the preparation of environmental documents on project and nonproject proposals that may affect environmental quality by the city or any of its departments or agencies, whether or not a land use permit is required. This article does not preclude agencies or applicants from preliminary discussions or exploration of ideas and options prior to commencing formal environmental review. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(A), 2001)

15.20.280 Timing and integration of SEPA.

A.    The primary purpose of the environmental review process is to provide environmental information to governmental decisionmakers to be considered prior to making their decision, and to provide for appropriate mitigation of environmental impacts in compliance with this title, the SEPA ordinance (Chapter 20.04), and the SEPA rules (Chapter 197-11 WAC). The actual decision to proceed with many actions may involve a series of individual approvals or decisions. The threshold determination and the EIS, if required, should ideally be completed at the beginning of this process. The threshold determination and the EIS (if required) should be completed at the earliest point in the planning and decisionmaking process, at which time, principal features of a proposal and its environmental impacts can be reasonably identified.

B.    To the fullest extent possible, the procedures required by SEPA shall be integrated with existing planning and licensing procedures utilized by the city. These procedures should be initiated early, and undertaken in conjunction with other governmental operations to avoid lengthy time delays and unnecessary duplication of effort.

C. 1.     A private applicant has a number of opportunities for environmental review at the conceptual stage under WAC 197-11-055(4). These include: (a) filing a land use application prior to filing a building or construction permit application, as provided by the review processes in this title; or (b) if a project is not categorically exempt and would not otherwise require a land use permit, filing a conceptual site plan application under Review Process II (for example, the city’s only action on the project would be a decision on a nonexempt building or construction permit or similar permit that requires detailed project plans and specifications). In addition, if a project does not require a land use permit but the applicant would like to have early environmental review at the conceptual stage, an applicant may, and is encouraged to, fill out an environmental checklist, prepare any preliminary project maps or drawings, and request a preapplication meeting.

2.    If the responsible official determines that the information initially supplied is not reasonably sufficient to evaluate the environmental impacts of a proposal subject to environmental review under SEPA, further information may be required of the applicant under WAC 197-11-100 and 197-11-335, and this title. The environmental checklist and necessary studies and analysis supporting the environmental checklist are part of the required permit application and are subject to the determination of completeness or incomplete application provisions of this title. Any additional information required by the responsible official must be submitted as required by this title. Applicants should be aware that the city will evaluate projects that have incomplete or unavailable information under WAC 197-11-080.

D.    At a minimum, any DNS, MDNS, or final environmental document shall be completed prior to the city making any decision irreversibly committing itself to adopt, approve or otherwise undertake any proposed nonexempt action. Further, as specified in WAC 197-11-070, until the responsible official issues a final DNS or final EIS, the city shall take no action concerning the proposal that would:

1.    Have an adverse environmental impact; or

2.    Limit the choice of reasonable alternatives.                                                                                                                                                                

E.    For nonexempt proposals, the final DNS, MDNS, final EIS, or other final environmental document for the proposal shall accompany the city’s final staff recommendation to any appropriate advisory body, such as the planning commission; provided, however, that preliminary discussions, public workshops or preliminary public hearings or meetings before the advisory body may occur prior to the final SEPA determinations. Exception: the SEPA threshold determination does not need to be final prior to a public hearing or meeting by the historic commission on a proposed project in the historic overlay zone since the historic commission’s action is advisory to the responsible official.

F.    When the city is the proponent for either a governmental action of a project nature or a governmental action of a nonproject nature, and the city is also the lead agency, then the maximum time limits contained in this chapter for the threshold determination and EIS process shall not apply to the proposal. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(B), 2001)

15.20.290 Time limit for determining categorically exempt proposals.

A determination whether the project or proposal is categorically exempt shall be made by the responsible official within fifteen days of receiving a request for such a determination from a private applicant or another governmental agency. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(C), 2001)

15.20.300 Use of categorical exemptions.

A.    The responsible official shall determine if a permit or governmental proposal initiated by the city is categorically exempt. The determination of whether or not a proposal is exempt shall be made by ascertaining that the proposal is properly defined and by identifying the governmental permit required (WAC 197-11-060). The responsible official’s determination that a proposal is exempt shall be final and not subject to administrative review.

B.    If a proposal includes a series of actions, physically or functionally related to each other, some of which are exempt and some of which are not, the proposal shall not be exempt.

C.    If the proposal includes a series of exempt actions which are physically or functionally related to each other, but which together may have a probable significant adverse environmental impact, the proposal shall not be exempt.

1.     If the director determines a proposal is exempt, SEPA procedural and substantive provisions shall not apply to the proposal. No environmental checklist shall be required for an exempt proposal.

2.    The city may itself prepare and use an environmental checklist to review a proposal whenever it would assist in its planning and decisionmaking process.

D.    If a proposal includes both exempt and nonexempt actions, exempt actions may be authorized with respect to the proposal prior to compliance with the procedural requirements of these guidelines subject to the following limitations:

1.    No nonexempt action shall be authorized;

2.    No action shall be authorized that would have an adverse environmental impact or limit the choice of reasonable alternatives;

3.    The responsible official may withhold approval of an exempt action that would lead to modification of the physical environment, when such modifications would serve no purpose if later approval of a nonexempt action is not secured;

4.    The responsible official may withhold approval of exempt actions that would lead to substantial financial expenditures by a private applicant which would serve no purpose if later approval of a nonexempt action is not secured. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(D), 2001)

15.20.310 Environmental checklist.

A.    When a threshold determination is required under WAC 197-11-310 and an environmental checklist is required under WAC 197-11-315(1)(a), a completed environmental checklist, substantially in the form provided in WAC 197-11-960, shall be filed with the application. This checklist shall be the basis for a determination by the city as to lead agency status, and if the city is determined to be the lead agency, then for making the threshold determination. For any application, including resubmitted applications, the city may use an existing SEPA determination or may require new or additional environmental documents as provided by WAC 197-11-600, including adoption of NEPA documents.

B.    For private proposals, the city will require the applicant to complete the environmental checklist. The city will provide assistance to the applicant as necessary. For city proposals, the department initiating the proposal shall complete the environmental checklist for that proposal.

C.    The city may require that it, and not the private applicant, will complete all or part of the environmental checklist for a private proposal, if either of the following occurs:

1.    The city has technical information on a question or questions contained in the environmental checklist that is unavailable to the private applicant; or

2.    The applicant has provided misleading and inaccurate information on previous proposals or on proposals currently under consideration. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(E), 2001)

15.20.320 Mitigated DNS.

A.    As provided in this section and in WAC 197-11-350, the responsible official may issue a mitigated determination of nonsignificance (mitigated DNS) for a proposal whenever:

1.    The city specifies mitigation measures in its DNS and conditions the proposal to include those mitigation measures so that the proposal will not have a probable significant adverse environmental impact; and

2.    The proposal is clarified or changed by the applicant to mitigate impacts of the proposal so that, in the judgment of the responsible official, the proposal will not have a probable significant adverse environmental impact.

B.    After submission of an environmental checklist and prior to the city’s threshold determination, an applicant may submit a written request for early notice of whether a determination of significance (DS) is likely under WAC 197-11-350.

C.    The responsible official should respond to the request for early notice within fifteen working days. The response shall:

1.    Be written;

2.    State whether the city currently considers issuance of a DS likely and, if so, indicate the potentially significant adverse environmental impacts that are leading the city to consider a DS; and

3.    State that the applicant may change or clarify the proposal to mitigate the indicated impacts, and revise the environmental checklist and/or permit application for the proposal as necessary to describe the changes or clarifications.

D.    As much as possible, the city should assist the applicant with identification of impacts to the extent necessary to formulate mitigation measures.

E.    When an applicant submits a changed or clarified proposal, along with a revised environmental checklist, the city shall base its threshold determination on the changed or clarified proposal and should make the determination within fourteen days of receiving the changed or clarified proposal.

1.    If the city indicated specific mitigation measures in its response to the request for early notice, and the applicant changed or clarified the proposal to include those specific mitigation measures, the city shall issue and circulate a mitigated determination of nonsignificance under WAC 197-11-340(2). The responsible official shall reconsider the DNS based on timely comments and may retain, modify or withdraw the DNS under WAC 197-11-340(2)(f).

F.    If the city indicated potentially significant adverse environmental impacts, but did not indicate specific mitigation measures that would allow it to issue a DNS, the city shall make the threshold determination, issuing a DNS or DS as appropriate.

1.    The applicant’s proposed mitigation measures (clarifications, changes or conditions) must be in writing and must be specific. For example, proposals to “control noise” or “prevent storm water runoff” are inadequate whereas proposals to “muffle machinery to X decibel” or “construct two hundred-foot storm water retention pond at Y location” may be adequate.

2.    Environmental documents need not be revised and resubmitted if the clarifications or changes to the proposal are stated in writing in attachments to, or documents incorporated by reference into, the environmental review record. An addendum may be used in compliance with WAC 197-11-600 and WAC 197-11-425.

3.    If a proposal continues to have a probable significant adverse environmental impact, even with mitigation measures, an EIS shall be prepared.

G.    The city’s written response to a request for early notice under the mitigated DNS provisions of this section shall not be construed as a determination of significance. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(F), 2001)

15.20.330 Optional DNS process.

To provide for an integrated project review process, the city will use the optional DNS process as set forth in WAC 197-11-355, unless the responsible official determines that another SEPA threshold determination process would more effectively implement SEPA procedures and requirements.

A.    When the responsible official has a reasonable basis for determining significant adverse environmental impacts are unlikely, the city may use a single integrated comment period to obtain comments on the notice of application and the likely threshold determination for the proposal. If this process is used, a second comment period will typically not be required when the final DNS is issued (see subsection D of this section).

B.    If the city uses the optional process specified in subsection A of this section, the city shall:

1.    State on the first page of the notice of application that it expects to issue a DNS for the proposal, and that:

a.    The optional DNS process is being used;

b.    This may be the only opportunity to comment on the environmental impacts of the proposal;

c.    The proposal may include mitigation measures under applicable codes, and that project review process may incorporate or require mitigation measures regardless of whether an EIS is prepared; and

d.    A copy of the subsequent threshold determination for the specific proposal may be obtained upon request;

2.    List in the notice of application the conditions being considered to mitigate environmental impacts, if a mitigated DNS is expected (or attach a copy of the proposed mitigated DNS);

3.    Provide a notice of application and SEPA public notice as required by Chapter 15.24.

4.    Send the notice of application and environmental checklist (or other environmental document if applicable) to:

a.    Agencies with jurisdiction, the Department of Ecology, affected tribes, and each local agency or political subdivision whose public services would be changed as a result of implementation of the proposal; and

b.    Anyone requesting a copy of the environmental checklist of the specific proposal.

C.    If the city indicates on the notice of application that a DNS is likely, an agency with jurisdiction may assume lead agency status during the comment period on the notice of application (WAC 197-11-948).

D.    The responsible official shall consider timely comments on the notice of application and either:

1.    Issue a DNS or mitigated DNS (or other environmental document if applicable) with no comment period using the procedures in subsection E of this section.

a.    A single comment period shall be used unless the responsible official determines that substantial new information regarding the environmental impacts of the proposal has been received during the comment period and that an additional public comment period on the new information is necessary;

2.    Issue a DNS or mitigated DNS (or other environmental document if applicable) with a comment period using the procedures in subsection E of this section, if the lead agency determines a comment period is necessary;

3.    Issue a DS; or

4.    Require additional information or studies prior to making a threshold determination.

E.    If a DNS or mitigated DNS is issued under subsection D.1 of this section, the lead agency shall send a copy of the DNS or mitigated DNS to the Department of Ecology, agencies with jurisdiction, those who commented, and anyone requesting a copy. A copy of the environmental checklist need not be recirculated. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(G), 2001)

15.20.340 Mitigated DNS issued under WAC 197-11-340(2) or 197-11-355.

The following provisions apply to mitigated DNSs issued under WAC 197-11-340(2) or 197-11-355.

A.    A mitigated DNS issued under WAC 197-11-340(2) or WAC 197-11-355 requires a public notice under Chapter 15.24. Whenever possible, SEPA notice under this section or the optional DNS process will be combined with or issued concurrently with other required notices including the notice of completeness, notice of application, and notice of public hearing.

B.    Mitigation measures incorporated in the mitigated DNS shall be deemed conditions of approval of the permit decision and may be enforced in the same manner as any term or condition of the permit, or enforced in any manner specifically prescribed by the city.

C.    If the city’s tentative decision on a permit or approval does not include mitigation measures that were incorporated in a mitigated DNS for the proposal, the responsible official should reevaluate the threshold determination to assure consistency with WAC 197-11-340(3)(a) (withdrawal of DNS). (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(H), 2001)

15.20.350 Preparation of EIS—Additional considerations.

A.    Preparation of draft and final EISs and draft and final supplemental EISs is the responsibility of the city under the direction of the responsible official per the procedures contained in this section. Before the city issues an EIS, the responsible official shall be satisfied that it complies with this chapter and Chapter 197-11 WAC.

B.    The draft and final EIS or SEIS shall be prepared by a consultant selected by the city per the city’s adopted procedures. However, city staff may prepare EISs for city proposals. If the responsible official requires an EIS for a proposal, the responsible official shall notify the applicant immediately after completion of the threshold determination. The responsible official shall also notify the applicant of the city’s procedure for EIS preparation, including approval of the DEIS and FEIS prior to distribution.

C.    The city may require that an applicant provide information the city does not possess, including specific investigations necessary to identify potentially significant adverse environmental impacts. However, the applicant may not be required to supply information that is not required under this chapter or WAC 197-11-100. (The limitation does not apply to information the city may request under another ordinance or statute.)

1.    Preparation of Draft Environmental Impact Statement.

a.    When an EIS is required, all information required by the SEPA rules shall be presented by the consultant in substantially the same form as for the draft environmental impact statement in accordance with procedures of this subsection.

b.    The responsible official shall assure that the EIS is prepared in a responsible manner and with appropriate methodology. The responsible official shall direct the areas of research and examination to be undertaken, as well as the organization of the resulting document in accordance with this subsection.

c.    The draft environmental impact statement shall be prepared, or reviewed and approved, by the responsible official prior to distribution. If, in the opinion of the responsible official, the information provided by the consultant and/or subconsultant(s) for the draft environmental impact statement is inadequate, erroneous, misleading, unclear, has excessive jargon, or otherwise deficient, the responsible official will cause its distribution to be delayed for such time as may be required to correct said deficiencies.

d.    Upon acceptance of the information required under this section for the draft environmental impact statement, such information shall become the property of the city and the responsible official shall possess the right to edit, reproduce, modify and distribute said information.

2.    Preparation of Final Environmental Impact Statement. Upon acceptance of the draft EIS, the responsible official shall cause its circulation and shall finalize said EIS in accordance with the procedures required by this title and the SEPA rules.

3.    Consultant Selection for Draft EIS.

a.    When a DS is issued, a consultant will be selected per the city’s adopted procedures.

b.    When a DS is issued, the applicant shall solicit and provide to the responsible official statements of qualifications for preparation of the EIS from at least three consultants.

c.    Based upon the responsible official’s review of the responses to the statement of qualifications, the responsible official shall select a consultant and appropriate subconsultant or reject the proposed consultant and/or subconsultant and require that the applicant solicit new statements of qualifications. The review may include interviews with the responsible official.

d.    Upon issuance of a scoping determination by the responsible official, it shall be the responsibility of the applicant to negotiate a contract with the consultant and any subconsultant selected by the responsible official. The contract shall address all items in the scoping document. If there is a conflict between the contract and the scoping document, the scoping document shall prevail. The contract shall provide for modification to the scope based upon the results of the environmental studies and analysis developed in the course of preparing the draft EIS. The contract shall reserve sufficient funds for preparation of a well-written cover memo and summary for both the draft and final EIS that meet the requirements in WAC 197-11-435 and 197-11-440(4) to synthesize the environmental analysis and evaluate and effectively communicate the environmental choices to be made among alternative courses of action and the effectiveness of mitigation measures, focusing on the main options that would be preserved or foreclosed for the future. After the responsible official is notified by the consultant and/or subconsultant that the contract with the applicant has been negotiated and executed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and the city’s adopted procedures, the consultant/subconsultant work on the EIS shall commence.

e.    The responsible official will meet with the consultant and any subconsultants to direct preparation of the draft EIS. The consultant shall meet with the applicant and/or discuss the EIS process with the applicant only when authorized by the responsible official.

f.    When the rough and preliminary draft EIS is provided to the responsible official, the consultant shall also provide a copy to the applicant, and the applicant shall be provided an opportunity to comment.

g.    All fees charged by the consultant and any subconsultant shall be the responsibility of the applicant. In no event shall the city be responsible for any such fees charged by the consultant or subconsultant except when the city is the applicant. All consultant and subconsultant contracts shall include language which recognizes that payment of the consultant/subconsultant fees shall be the sole responsibility of the applicant and not the responsibility of the city.

h.    In the event the actions or inactions of the consultant/subconsultant jeopardize the EIS process as defined herein, the responsible official is authorized to impose penalties in accordance with rules adopted by the responsible official. Such rules shall be incorporated into the consultant/subconsultant contract and the contract shall be consistent with said rules.

4.    Consultant/Applicant Responsibilities. When a consultant prepares a draft, final or supplemental EIS, the following responsibilities are hereby specified (for purposes of this section, the term EIS includes any graphics, supporting materials, and technical studies):

a.    Consultant and subconsultant selected by city;

b.    City determines the scope of the EIS in compliance with WAC 197-11-360, and WAC 197-11-408 or WAC 197-11-410 as appropriate;

c.    Applicant negotiates and executes contract with consultant and required subconsultants;

d.    Consultant submits information in the form of a rough draft EIS to city and applicant;

e.    Applicant reviews and provides comments on rough draft EIS to city;

f.    City reviews the rough draft EIS and applicant’s comments;

g.    City prepares review comments and directs changes to the document;

h.    Consultant prepares preliminary draft of EIS;

i.    City approves preliminary draft EIS or directs that further revisions be made;

j.    Consultant prepares approved draft EIS in sufficient quantity to satisfy WAC 197-11-455. The specific number shall be determined by the responsible official;

k.    Consultant circulates draft EIS to agencies with expertise and jurisdiction, affected tribes and persons requesting a copy in compliance with WAC 197-11-455;

l.    City reviews comments and directs consultant in preparation of changes and additions to draft EIS, responses to draft EIS comments and preparation of final EIS, including reasonable alternatives or modified alternatives and environmental impacts that might not have been studied or fully evaluated in the draft EIS, using the same sequence of rough and preliminary final EIS as described above for the draft EIS;

m.    Consultant prepares final EIS;

n.    Consultant circulates final EIS in compliance with WAC 197-11-460. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(I), 2001)

15.20.360 Public awareness of availability of EIS.

Public notice shall be given as specified in Chapter 15.24, Article II, at the expense of the applicant. (Ord. 2530-01, Ch. 5 § 7(J), 2001)