Chapter 19.65
PROCESS III – PROJECT APPROVAL1

Sections:

19.65.010    Process III generally.

19.65.050    Compliance with State Environmental Policy Act.

19.65.060    Official file.

19.65.070    Notice.

19.65.080    Burden of proof.

19.65.090    Written comments.

19.65.100    Director’s decision.

19.65.120    Appeals.

19.65.010 Process III generally.

Various places in the Code indicate that certain developments, activities or uses are permitted only if approved using process III. This chapter describes process III.

All commercial, office, industrial, institutional, and multifamily development applications subject to the provisions of this chapter, including applications for remodeling and expansion of an existing use, shall also meet the requirements of Chapter 19.115 FWRC, Community Design Guidelines. If the development, activity, or use that requires approval through process III is part of a proposal that also requires approval through process IV, the entire proposal will be decided upon using process IV, if the director determines that this will result in more efficient decision making.

Under process III, the director will make the initial land use decision and the decision on the community design guidelines based on written comments and information. Any appeals of either decision will be decided by the hearing examiner after a public hearing.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 50, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.05), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-386.)

Cross reference: Hearing examiner, Chapter 2.95 FWRC.

19.65.050 Compliance with State Environmental Policy Act.

The State Environmental Policy Act applies to some of the decisions that will be made using this chapter. The director shall evaluate each application and, where applicable, comply with the State Environmental Policy Act and with state regulation and city ordinances issued under the authority of the State Environmental Policy Act.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 54, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.20), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-390.)

Cross reference: Environmental policy, FWRC Title 14.

19.65.060 Official file.

(1) Contents. The director shall compile an official file on the application containing the following:

(a) All application material submitted by the applicant.

(b) All written comments received on the matter.

(c) The written decision of the director.

(d) If the decision of the director is appealed, the following will be included in the file:

(i) The notice of appeal.

(ii) All written comments received regarding the appeal.

(iii) The staff report on the appeal.

(iv) The electronic sound recording of the hearing on the appeal.

(v) The decision of the hearing examiner on the appeal.

(e) Any other information relevant to the matter.

(2) Availability. The official file is a public record. It is available for inspection and copying in the department during regular business hours.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 55, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.25), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-391.)

19.65.070 Notice.

(1) Content. The director shall, within 14 days of issuing a letter of completeness on the proposal, prepare a notice of application containing the following information:

(a) The name of the applicant and, if applicable, the project name.

(b) The date of application, the date of the notice of completion for the application, and the date of the notice of application.

(c) The street address of the subject property or, if this is not available, a description of the location of the property in nonlegal language. Except for notice published in a newspaper of general circulation in the city, the notice must also include a vicinity map that identifies the subject property.

(d) A brief description of the requested decision, including a citation to the provision of this title governing the request, a list of the project permits included in the application and, if applicable, a list of any studies requested. To the extent known by the city, the notice shall include any related permits which are not included in the application.

(e) A statement of the availability of the official file.

(f) A statement of the right of any person to submit written comments to the director regarding the application within 15 days of the date of the notice.

(g) A statement that only the applicant, persons who submit written comments to the director, or persons who specifically request a copy of the original decision may appeal the director’s decision.

(h) The identification of existing environmental documents that evaluate the proposed project and the location where the application and any studies can be reviewed.

(i) A statement of the preliminary determination, if one has been made at the time of notice, of those development regulations that will be used for project mitigation and of consistency as provided in RCW 36.70B.040.

(2) Distribution. Within 14 calendar days of issuing the letter of completeness, the director shall distribute this notice of application as follows:

(a) A copy of the notice of application will be published in the official daily newspaper of the city.

(b) The notice of application will be conspicuously posted on or near the subject property. At least one will be posted on or adjacent to every public right-of-way providing primary vehicular access to any property that abuts the subject property.

(c) A copy of the notice will be posted on each of the official notification boards of the city and public libraries located within the city.

(d) For projects under this chapter which are located within, or are 300 feet from, property zoned SE (suburban estates), RS (single-family residential), or RM (multifamily), a copy of the notice will be mailed to the persons receiving the property tax statements for all property within 300 feet of each boundary of the subject property.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 56, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 07-573, § 20, 12-4-07; Ord. No. 01-399, § 3, 8-7-01; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.30), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-392.)

19.65.080 Burden of proof.

The applicant has the responsibility of convincing the director that, under the provisions of this chapter, the applicant is entitled to the requested decision.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 57, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.35), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-393.)

19.65.090 Written comments.

The director shall consider all written comments and information regarding the requested decision that are received by the department before the deadline contained within the notice regarding the application.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 58, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.40), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-394.)

19.65.100 Director’s decision.

(1) General.

(a) Coordination with decisions under the State Environmental Policy Act. If a SEPA threshold determination is required to be issued, the threshold determination must follow the end of the public comment period on the project permit application, but precede the director’s decision on the land use and design components of the process III project permit approval. If the SEPA threshold determination is appealed, the director’s land use and design components decision shall be issued sufficiently in advance of the open record hearing on the threshold determination appeal, to allow any appeal of the land use and/or design review decision to be consolidated and heard with the appeal of the threshold determination.

(b) Timing. The director will endeavor to issue his or her decision on the land use and design components of the process III project permit approval within 120 days of the issuance of the letter of completeness.

(i) The 120-day time period does not apply if a project permit application under this chapter requires an amendment to the comprehensive plan or this title; requires approval of a new fully contained community as provided in RCW 36.70A.350, a master planned resort as provided in RCW 36.70A.360, the siting of an essential public facility as provided in RCW 36.70A.200, or capital facility projects of the city; or if a project permit application under this chapter is substantially revised by the applicant, in which case the time period shall start from the date at which the revised project application is determined to be complete.

(ii) If the decision solely relates to a review of community design guidelines of a process IV application, the director shall issue a written decision within 10 working days after the deadline for submitting comments.

(iii) The following periods shall not be included in the calculation of the 120-day period:

(A) Any period during which the applicant has been requested by the city to correct plans, perform required studies, or provide additional required information. In these instances, the period excluded from the 120-day calculation shall begin on the date the city notifies the applicant of the need for additional information and run until the earlier of the date the city determines whether the additional information satisfies the request for information, or 14 days after the date the information has been provided to the city. If the city determines that the information submitted by the applicant under this subsection is insufficient, it shall notify the applicant of the deficiencies and the procedures under this subsection shall apply as if a new request for studies had been made.

(B) Any period during which an environmental impact statement is being prepared following a determination of significance pursuant to Chapter 43.21C RCW.

(C) Any period for administrative appeals of the SEPA threshold determination; provided, that the time period for consideration of such appeals shall not exceed 90 days for an open record appeal hearing. The parties to an appeal may agree to extend the 90-day period.

(D) Any extension of time mutually agreed upon by the applicant and the city.

(iv) If the director is unable to issue his or her final decision on the land use or design review components of a process III project permit application as provided in this subsection, the city shall provide written notice of this fact to the applicant. The notice shall include a statement of reasons why the decision has not been issued within the 120-day period, and an estimated date for issuance of the notice of final decision.

(2) Decisional criteria. The director shall use the criteria listed in this subsection and the provisions of this title describing the requested decision in deciding upon the application.

(a) The director may approve the application only if:

(i) It is consistent with the comprehensive plan;

(ii) It is consistent with all applicable provisions of this title;

(iii) It is consistent with the public health, safety, and welfare;

(iv) The streets and utilities in the area of the subject property are adequate to serve the anticipated demand from the proposal;

(v) The proposed access to the subject property is at the optimal location and configuration; and

(vi) Traffic safety impacts for all modes of transportation, both on and off site, are adequately mitigated.

(b) If the application is subject to the requirements of Chapter 19.115 FWRC, Community Design Guidelines, the director shall also use the following criteria in deciding upon an application:

(i) It is consistent with the site design standards set forth for all zoning districts in FWRC 19.115.050;

(ii) It is consistent with applicable supplemental guidelines set forth in FWRC 19.115.090; and

(iii) For development applications for remodeling or expansion of an existing development, it is consistent with those provisions of Chapter 19.115 FWRC, Community Design Guidelines, identified by the director as being applicable.

(3) Conditions and restrictions. The director shall include in the written decision any conditions and restrictions that he or she determines are reasonably necessary to eliminate or minimize any undesirable effects of granting the application. Any conditions and restrictions that are included become part of the decision.

(4) Contents. The director shall include the following in the written decision:

(a) A statement granting, modifying and granting, or denying the application.

(b) Any conditions and restrictions that are imposed.

(c) A statement of facts presented to the director that support the decision, including any conditions and restrictions that are imposed.

(d) A statement of the director’s conclusions based on those facts.

(e) A statement of the criteria used by the director in making the decision.

(f) The date of issuance of the decision.

(g) A summary of the rights, as established in this chapter, of the applicant and others to appeal the decision of the director.

(h) A statement of any threshold determination made under the State Environmental Policy Act, Chapter 43.21C RCW.

(i) A statement that affected property owners may request a change in valuation for property tax purposes notwithstanding any program of revaluation.

(5) Distribution of written decision. Within five working days after the written decision of the director is issued, it shall be distributed as follows:

(a) A copy will be mailed to the applicant.

(b) A copy will be mailed to each person who submitted written comments or information to the director.

(c) A copy will be mailed to any person who has specifically requested it.

(d) A copy will be mailed to the King County assessor.

(Ord. No. 09-631, § 5, 11-3-09; Ord. No. 09-594, § 59, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.45), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-395.)

19.65.120 Appeals.

(1) Who may appeal. A decision of the director under this process may be appealed by the applicant, any person who submitted written comments or information, any person who has specifically requested a copy of the decision, or the city.

(2) How and when to appeal. A written notice of appeal must be delivered to the department within 14 calendar days after issuance of the decision of the director. The appeal must be accompanied by cash or a check, payable to the city of Federal Way, in the amount of the fee as established by the city. The notice of appeal must contain:

(a) A statement identifying the decision being appealed, along with a copy of the decision;

(b) A statement of the alleged errors in the director’s decision, including identification of specific factual findings and conclusions of the director disputed by the person filing the appeal; and

(c) The appellant’s name, address, telephone number and fax number, and any other information to facilitate communications with the appellant.

(3) Appeal process. Appeals are governed by process IV.

(Ord. No. 09-594, § 61, 1-6-09; Ord. No. 07-573, § 22, 12-4-07; Ord. No. 97-291, § 3, 4-1-97; Ord. No. 90-43, § 2(145.60), 2-27-90. Code 2001 § 22-397.)


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Cross references: Power and jurisdiction of the hearing examiner, FWRC 2.95.040; procedure for review of the shoreline management development permit requirements, FWRC 15.05.100; requirements for drainage review, Chapter 16.25 FWRC; appeals of modification requirements in developments or uses which require approval through processes I, II, III or IV shall be appealed pursuant to the procedures of process III, FWRC 19.130.070; proposal to construct stream stabilization must be reviewed under process III review procedure, Chapter 19.165 FWRC; proposal to construct a stream culvert must be reviewed under process IV review procedure, Chapter 19.70 FWRC; applications for a temporary use permit will be reviewed and decided using process III review procedures, FWRC 19.275.030 et seq.