Chapter 12.28
SIDEWALK CONSTRUCTION, MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR

Sections:

12.28.010    Hazardous conditions on public street right-of-way.

12.28.020    Property owner liable for maintenance and repairs.

12.28.030    Notice to repair hazardous sidewalk.

12.28.040    Financial aid.

12.28.050    Permit required.

12.28.060    Resolution and notice of required improvements.

12.28.070    Notice to describe property, construction.

12.28.080    Notification and publication.

12.28.090    Noncompliance with notice – Hearing.

12.28.100    Chargeable property.

12.28.110    Assessment roll hearing – Notice confirmation – Appeal.

12.28.120    Method of payment of assessments.

12.28.130    Collection of assessments.

12.28.140    Deferral of payment of special assessments.

12.28.010 Hazardous conditions on public street right-of-way.

It is unlawful for the owner and/or any person occupying or having charge or control of any premises abutting upon any public street right-of-way or alley in the city to construct, place, cause, create, maintain or permit to remain upon any part of said right-of-way located between the curb line, or, if there is no curb line, then between the adjacent edge of the traveled portion of such right-of-way and the abutting property line, any condition, structure or object dangerous or hazardous to the use of said right-of-way by the members of the general public, including but not limited to the following conditions:

(1) Defective sidewalk surfaces, including but not limited to broken or cracked cement concrete, stub-toes, depressions within or between sidewalk joints;

(2) Defective cement concrete surfaces placed adjacent to the public sidewalk or defects at the juncture between said cement surfaces and said public sidewalks, including stub-toes or depressions at said junction;

(3) Defects in sidewalks or public ways caused or contributed to by the roots of trees or similar growth or vegetation located either on private adjoining property or on the parking strip portion of any such street right-of-way. Except that where a sidewalk, street or curb is damaged by a parking strip tree planted and maintained by the city, responsibility for damage to the sidewalk and the liability resulting therefrom shall remain with the city;

(4) Defective conditions caused by tree limbs, foliage, brush or grass on or extending over such public sidewalks or rights-of-way;

(5) Defective conditions on the parking strip area between the curb line and the sidewalk, or, if there is no curb line, then between the edge of the traveled portion of the street and the sidewalk and between the sidewalk and the abutting property line;

(6) Defects resulting from accumulation of ice and snow on public sidewalks or on the right-of-way between the curb line or, if there is no curb line, then between the adjacent edge of the traveled portion of the street roadway and the abutting property line;

(7) Defects consisting of foreign matter on the public sidewalks, including but not limited to gravel, oil, grease, or any other foreign subject matter that might cause pedestrians using said sidewalk to fall, stumble or slip by reasons of the existence of such foreign matter;

(8) Defective handrails or fences or other similar structures within or immediately adjacent to said right-of-way area. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.020 Property owner liable for maintenance and repairs.

Whenever any public right-of-way in the city shall have been improved by the construction of a sidewalk along either side thereof, the duty and expense of the inspection, maintenance, cleaning, repair and renewal of said sidewalk, including the erection or maintenance of suitable barriers along the outer margin of said sidewalk where the same is elevated more than two feet above the abutting property, shall be upon the owner of the directly abutting property; provided, however, that if the difference in elevation is the result of a change in street grade occasioned by any city, county or state roadway construction, reconstruction or improvement project, then in that event said barrier shall be erected or installed as a part of such project and the cost thereof shall be borne by the project. All such repairs shall be made after application for and issuance of a proper street excavation permit therefor, as required by law, and all of such work to be duly inspected and approved by the public works department of the city. (Ord. 2565 § 1, 1994; Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.030 Notice to repair hazardous sidewalk.

Whenever the city is notified that a hazardous condition exists, either by the public or through its sidewalk inspection program, the city engineer shall cause a notice to be sent to the legal owner of the abutting property. Said notice shall describe the location of the hazardous condition and state that the property owner has 60 days to obtain a public works permit and complete said repairs. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.040 Financial aid.

During any calendar year in which funding has been appropriated by the city council, those residential property owners who have been notified that a defective sidewalk abutting their property is required to be repaired or replaced within 60 days:

(1) Who, within said 60 days, cause such repairs to be made shall be eligible to receive up to 50 percent reimbursement of their cost to make such repairs; or

(2) Who, within said 60 days, do not make such repairs and who agree in writing within said 60 days to participate with the city in assuming responsibility for the cost of such repairs, and agree that the city’s contractor shall effect such repairs shall be relieved of responsibility for such repairs upon payment to the city, within said 60 days, of a sum equal to 75 percent of the cost of such repairs and the city shall cause such repairs to be performed and shall be responsible for payment of the full costs thereof; or

(3) Who do not take the action permitted in subsection (1) or (2) of this section, but who, after said 60 days but prior to the commencement of repairs, request the city to effect such repairs through its contractor, and who upon making such request pay to the city a sum equal to 100 percent of the cost thereof shall be relieved of responsibility for such repairs and the city shall cause such repairs to be performed and shall be responsible for payment of the full costs thereof; or

(4) Who do not take the action permitted in subsections (1), (2), or (3) of this section shall be liable for all of the costs of repairs to the sidewalk abutting their property, plus their proportionate share of all administrative costs incurred by the city, including costs of publication, title reports, recording fees, attorneys fees and all other usual and ordinary fees associated with sidewalk repair assessments under the laws of Washington. (Ord. 2618 § 1, 1996; Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.050 Permit required.

Any person desiring to repair, change or relocate any sidewalk abutting their property shall make application in writing to the department of public works of the city. Such application shall contain, among others, the exact location of such proposed change or relocation, the location of any new sidewalk to be laid and the connections and location of other sidewalks upon such street; no change or relocation of any sidewalk shall be made until the issuance of an appropriate permit therefor. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.060 Resolution and notice of required improvements.

Whenever in the judgment of the city engineer the public convenience or safety requires that a sidewalk or driveway be constructed, renewed or repaired (hereinafter called the improvement) along either side of any street or other public place therein, and the abutting property owner has not complied with the notice required in LMC 12.28.030 said city engineer shall report the fact to the city council and if the council shall deem the improvement necessary or convenient for the public convenience or safety, it shall by resolution order said improvement and shall cause a notice in writing to be served on the owner of each lot, block or parcel of land immediately abutting upon that portion and side of such street or public place where said improvement is to be constructed, requiring that such improvement be constructed in accordance with such resolution. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.070 Notice to describe property, construction.

The resolution and notice provided for in LMC 12.28.060 shall describe each lot, block or parcel of land immediately abutting on that portion of the street or other public place where said improvement is to be constructed, and shall specify the kind of improvement required, the method and material to be used in the construction, and shall contain an estimate of the cost thereof. The notice shall state that unless the improvement is constructed in compliance with the notice and within the time therein specified said improvement will be constructed by the city and the cost and expense thereof assessed against the property abutting thereon. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.080 Notification and publication.

If all or any portion of the cost of the improvement is to be assessed against the abutting property owner, or if the abutting property owner is required to construct the improvement, the resolution shall fix the time from and after its passage, and a place, for hearing on the resolution. The resolution shall be published for two consecutive weeks before the time of hearing in the official newspaper of the city and a notice of such hearing shall be given each owner or reputed owner of the abutting property by mailing to the owner or reputed owner of the property as shown on the tax rolls of the county treasurer, at the address shown thereon a notice of the date of hearing, such mailing to be at least 10 days before the date fixed for such hearing. The hearing may be postponed from time to time to a definite date until the hearing is held. At the time of the hearing the council shall hear persons who appear for or against the improvement, and determine whether it will make any changes in the original plan, and what the changes shall be. This action may be taken by motion adopted in the usual manner. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.090 Noncompliance with notice – Hearing.

In case the notice provided for in LMC 12.28.030 shall not be complied with within the time therein specified, the city engineer having charge of the maintenance of the streets and public places in the city shall proceed to construct the improvement and shall report to the council an assessment roll showing each lot, block or parcel of land immediately abutting upon said improvement, the name of the owner thereof if known, and the portion of the cost of such improvement to be assessed against each lot, block or parcel of land. The procedures for hearing and confirmation of assessment roll including procedures for notification, publication and appeal shall be identical with those set forth in LMC 12.28.110. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.100 Chargeable property.

For the purpose of this chapter all property having a frontage on the side or margin of any street or other public place shall be deemed abutting property and such property may be chargeable as provided in this chapter, with all the costs of construction of any improvement between the margin of such street or other public place and the roadway lying in front of and adjacent to said property. The term “sidewalk” as used in this act shall be construed to mean and include any and all structures or forms of improvement included in the space between the street margin and roadway boundary and known as the “sidewalk area”. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.110 Assessment roll hearing – Notice confirmation – Appeal.

Where all or any portion of the costs are to be assessed against the abutting property, an assessment roll shall be prepared by the city engineer or his or her designee and which shall describe the property assessed, the name of the owner, if known, otherwise stating that the owner is unknown and fixing the amount of the assessment. The assessment roll shall be filed with the city clerk, and when so filed the council shall by resolution fix the date for hearing thereon and direct the clerk to give notice of such hearing and the time and place thereof. The notice of hearing shall be mailed to the person whose name appears on the county treasurer’s tax roll as the owner or reputed owner of the property, at the address shown thereon, and shall be published before the date fixed for the hearing for two consecutive weeks in the official newspaper of the city. The notice shall be mailed and first publication made at least 10 days before the hearing date. Following the hearing the city council shall by ordinance affirm, modify, or reject or order recasting of the assessment roll. An appeal may be taken to the superior court from the ordinance confirming the assessment roll in the same manner as is provided for appeals from the assessment roll by Chapters 35.43 to 35.54 RCW, inclusive, as now or hereafter amended. Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.120 Method of payment of assessments.

The city council shall by resolution provide whether the full amount of the assessment shall be paid in one payment or whether it may be paid in installments and shall prescribe the time and amount of such payments; and if more than one payment is provided for the city council may by resolution provide for interest on unpaid installments and fix the rate thereof. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.130 Collection of assessments.

The assessment roll as affirmed or modified by the city council shall be filed with the city finance office for collection, and the amount thereof including interest, if any, shall become a lien against the property described therein from the date of such filing. Whenever any payment on any assessment or installment is delinquent and unpaid for a period of 30 days or more the lien may be foreclosed in the same manner and with the same effect as is provided by Chapters 35.43 to 35.54 RCW, inclusive, as now or hereafter amended. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).

12.28.140 Deferral of payment of special assessments.

Special assessments created pursuant to this chapter may be deferred as provided in Chapter 14.10 LMC and as provided in Chapter 84.38 RCW. (Ord. 2379 § 1, 1989).