Chapter 14.10
SEPA PROCEDURES AND POLICIES

Sections:

14.10.010    Purpose and adoption by reference.

14.10.020    Designation of responsible official.

14.10.030    Lead agency determination and responsibilities.

14.10.040    Integrated procedures and timing.

14.10.050    Submission of Determination of Nonsignificance, draft Environmental Impact Statement, final Environmental Impact Statement.

14.10.060    Thresholds for categorical exemptions.

14.10.070    Use of exemptions.

14.10.080    Environmental Checklist.

14.10.090    Threshold determination.

14.10.100    Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance.

14.10.110    Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) – Preparation – Additional considerations.

14.10.120    Using existing environmental documents.

14.10.130    Public notice.

14.10.140    Public hearings under WAC 197-11-535(2).

14.10.150    Designation of official to perform consulted agency responsibilities for the City.

14.10.160    State Environmental Policy Act and agency decisions – Purpose.

14.10.170    Appeals.

14.10.180    Record on appeal.

14.10.190    Notice of Action.

14.10.200    Responsibility of agencies – State Environmental Policy Act public information.

14.10.210    Emergency actions.

14.10.220    Fees.

14.10.010 Purpose and adoption by reference.

This chapter contains the basic requirements that apply to the SEPA process. The State Environmental Policy Act (Chapter 43.21C RCW) and Chapter 197-11 WAC as presently constituted or hereinafter amended are hereby adopted by reference as if fully set forth herein. Where there is any conflict regarding the application of Chapter 197-11 WAC or the provisions of this chapter, this chapter shall control. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 1).

14.10.020 Designation of responsible official.

A. For those proposals for which the City is the lead agency, the responsible official shall be the Director of Community Development or designee.

B. For all proposals for which the City is the lead agency, the responsible official shall make the threshold determination, supervise scoping and preparation of any required Environmental Impact Statement and perform any other functions assigned to the “lead agency” or “responsible official” by the SEPA Rules in Chapter 197-11 WAC.

C. The City shall retain all documents required by the SEPA Rules, Chapter 197-11 WAC and make them available in accordance with Chapter 42.17 RCW. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 2).

14.10.030 Lead agency determination and responsibilities.

The department within the City receiving an application for or initiating a proposal that involves a nonexempt action shall consult with the responsible official to determine the lead agency for that proposal under WAC 197-11-050 and 197-11-922 through 197-11-940, unless the lead agency has been previously determined.

A. When the City is the lead agency for a proposal, the responsible official shall supervise compliance with the threshold determination requirements, and if an Environmental Impact Statement is necessary, shall supervise preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement.

B. When the City is not the lead agency for a proposal, all departments of the City shall use and consider, as appropriate, either the Determination of Nonsignificance or the final Environmental Impact Statement of the lead agency in making decisions on the proposal. The responsible official shall not prepare or require preparation of a Determination of Nonsignificance or Environmental Impact Statement in addition to that prepared by the lead agency, unless required under WAC 197-11-600. The City may conduct supplemental environmental review under WAC 197-11-600.

C. If the City or any of its departments receive a lead agency determination made by another agency that appears inconsistent with the criteria of WAC 197-11-922 through 197-11-940, it may object to the determination. Any objection must be made to the agency originally making the determination and resolved within 15 days of receipt of the determination, or the City must petition the State Department of Ecology for a lead agency determination under WAC 197-11-946 within the 15-day time period. The responsible official may initiate any such petition on behalf of the City.

D. Departments of the City are authorized to make agreements as to lead agency status or shared lead agency duties for a proposal under WAC 197-11-942 and 197-11-944. The responsible official and any department that will incur responsibilities as the result of such agreement must approve the agreement.

E. When making a lead agency determination for a private project, the responsible official shall require sufficient information from the applicant to identify which other agencies have jurisdiction over the proposal (that is, when agencies require nonexempt licenses). (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 3).

14.10.040 Integrated procedures and timing.

The process of environmental review under SEPA shall be integrated, insofar as possible, with any applicable decisionmaking processes on permits, applications, and proposals submitted to the City for review and decision.

A. For each application for an action subject to SEPA, the responsible official shall determine how environmental review can be best integrated with the decisionmaking process.

B. For categorically exempt actions, the following procedures do not apply. When requested, the responsible official shall determine whether or not an action is exempt within seven days of the request for the determination.

C. For all nonexempt actions, a Notice of Application is required.

D. The responsible official shall determine the probable threshold determination on the proposal prior to Notice of Application.

E. For proposals likely to receive a DNS, the optional DNS process shall be used (WAC 197-11-355). The Final Notice of DNS shall be integrated with the Notice of Decision or recommendation on the proposed action.

F. For proposals likely to receive a Determination of Significance, such determination and a scoping notice shall accompany the Notice of Application of the proposal.

G. Nothing shall prevent the responsible official from conducting an environmental review separately from the permit action when unusual circumstances exist that indicate separate environmental review may result in a more efficient process, avoid duplication of review, or benefit the environment through separate review. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 4).

14.10.050 Submission of Determination of Nonsignificance, draft Environmental Impact Statement, final Environmental Impact Statement.

For nonexempt proposals, the Determination of Nonsignificance or final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposal shall normally accompany the City’s staff recommendations to the decisionmaker. The draft Environmental Impact Statement for a proposal may accompany the City’s staff recommendations when a hearing pursuant to WAC 197-11-535 is held. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 5).

14.10.060 Thresholds for categorical exemptions.

The City of Maple Valley adopts WAC 197-11-300 through 197-11-390, WAC 197-11-800 through 197-11-890, and WAC 197-11-908 and RCW 43.21C.410 as now existing or hereinafter amended, by reference, subject to the following:

A. Establishment of Thresholds for Categorically Exempt Actions. The following exempt threshold levels are hereby established pursuant to WAC 197-11-800(1)(c) for the exemptions in WAC 197-11-800(1)(b):

1. The construction or location of 10 dwelling units or less;

2. The construction or location of multifamily residential structures of 20 units or less;

3. The construction of a barn, loafing shed, farm equipment storage building, produce storage or packing structure, or similar agricultural structure, covering 40,000 square feet or less, to be used only by the property owner or his or her agent in the conduct of farming the property;

4. The construction of an office, school, commercial recreational, service or storage building with 30,000 square feet or less of gross floor area, and with associated parking facilities designed for 90 or fewer automobiles;

5. The construction of a parking lot designed for 90 or fewer automobiles;

6. Any landfill or excavation of 1,000 cubic yards or less throughout the total lifetime of the fill or excavation.

B. Whenever the City establishes new exempt levels under this section, it shall send them to the Department of Ecology, Headquarters Office, Olympia, Washington, under WAC 197-11-800(l)(c).

C. Critical Areas. The critical areas ordinance adopted pursuant to Chapter 18.60 MVMC and the King County Shoreline Management Plan designate criteria for critical areas and are adopted by reference. For each critical area, the exemptions within WAC 197-11-800 that are inapplicable for the area are:

1. WAC 197-11-800(1), except that the construction or location of a single-family residence within a critical area, if otherwise allowed by applicable development regulations, is exempt;

2. WAC 197-11-800(2)(d), except when necessary for construction or location of a single-family residence exempt under WAC 197-11-800(1) and subsection (C)(1) of this section;

3. WAC 197-11-800(2)(f), except for single-family residences, the construction of which would be categorically exempt under WAC 197-11-800(1) and subsection (C)(1) of this section;

4. WAC 197-11-800(2)(g);

5. WAC 197-11-800(6)(a);

6. WAC 197-11-800(13)(c);

7. WAC 197-11-800(23)(c); and

8. WAC 197-11-800(23)(e).

D. All other exemptions shall continue to apply within environmentally critical areas of the City. An exemption from the requirements of this chapter does not limit the requirements of or the application of Chapter 18.60 MVMC, Critical Areas Regulations, or any other development regulations.

1. Lands Covered by Water. Certain exemptions do not apply on lands covered by water, and this remains true regardless of whether or not lands covered by water are mapped.

2. Treatment. The City shall treat proposals located wholly or partially within a critical area no differently than other proposals under this chapter, making a threshold determination for all such proposals. The City shall not automatically require an EIS for a proposal merely because it is proposed for location in an environmentally critical area. (Ord. O-16-598 § 1(B) (Exh. B); Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 6).

14.10.070 Use of exemptions.

A. Each department within the City that receives an application for a license, or in the case of governmental proposals, the department initiating the proposal, shall determine whether the license and/or the proposal are subject to SEPA, and if so, are categorically exempt. If a proposal is exempt, none of the procedural requirements of this chapter applies to the proposal. The City shall not require completion of an Environmental Checklist for an exempt proposal.

B. In determining whether or not a proposal is exempt, the department shall make certain the proposal is properly defined and shall identify the governmental licenses required (WAC 197-11-0650). If a proposal includes exempt and nonexempt actions, the department shall determine the lead agency, even if the license application that triggers the department’s consideration is exempt. The department shall request assistance from the responsible official for any interpretation of this chapter.

C. If a proposal includes both exempt and nonexempt actions, the City may authorize exempt actions prior to compliance with the procedural requirements of this chapter, except that:

1. The City shall not give authorization for:

a. Any nonexempt action;

b. Any action that would have an adverse environmental impact; or

c. Any action that would limit the choice of reasonable alternatives.

2. A department may withhold approval of an exempt action that would lead to modification of the physical environment, when such modification would serve no purpose if nonexempt actions were not approved; and

3. A department may withhold approval of exempt actions that would lead to substantial financial expenditures by a private applicant when the expenditures would serve no purpose if nonexempt actions were not approved. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 7).

14.10.080 Environmental Checklist.

A. A completed Environmental Checklist or a copy in the form provided in WAC 197-11-960 shall be filed prior to an application for a permit, license, certificate, or other approval not specifically exempted in this chapter; except, a Checklist is not needed if the City and the applicant agree that an Environmental Impact Statement is required, SEPA compliance has been completed, or SEPA compliance has been initiated by another agency. The City shall use the Environmental Checklist to determine the lead agency and for making the threshold determination.

B. For private proposals, the City will require the applicant to complete the Environmental Checklist, providing assistance as necessary. For City proposals, the department initiating the proposal shall complete the Environmental Checklist for that proposal.

C. The City may assist the applicant in completing the Environmental Checklist for a private proposal, if either of the following occurs:

1. The City has technical information on a question or questions that is unavailable to the private applicant; or

2. The applicant has provided inaccurate information on previous proposals or on proposals currently under consideration. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 8).

14.10.090 Threshold determination.

A. The responsible official shall make the threshold determination and issue a Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) or Determination of Significance (DS) or verification of the proposal as a planned action under WAC 197-11-310. The responsible official shall make such threshold determination or verification in accordance with applicable sections of the SEPA Rules (Chapter 197-11 WAC) and these procedures.

B. Any threshold Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) may be accompanied by conditions imposed to mitigate adverse impacts which are less than significant based upon application of SEPA substantive authority.

C. A DNS may be accompanied by conditions, clarifications, or changes to the proposal that result in potentially significant adverse impacts becoming less than significant. This shall be referred to as a Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance (MDNS).

D. A DNS or DS may be accompanied by previously prepared environmental review documents adopted or incorporated by reference to avoid duplication of review. Previous environmental review documents may be added to or supplemented per SEPA Rules (WAC 197-11-600 et seq.) and these procedures.

E. Any statement of verification of the proposal as a planned action may be accompanied by conditions imposed to mitigate adverse impacts which are less than significant based upon application of SEPA substantive authority. (Ord. O-16-598 § 1(B) (Exh. B); Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 9).

14.10.100 Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance.

A. As provided in this section and in WAC 197-11-350, the responsible official may issue a Determination of Nonsignificance based on conditions attached to the proposal by the responsible official or on changes to or clarifications of the proposal made by the applicant.

B. An applicant may request in writing early notice of whether a Determination of Significance is likely under WAC 197-11-350. The request must:

1. Follow submission of an Environmental Checklist for a nonexempt proposal for which the department is the lead agency and include detailed site plans and a description of the proposal;

2. Precede submission of a permit application;

3. Precede the City’s actual threshold determination for the proposal; and

4. State that the applicant may change or clarify the proposal to mitigate the indicated impacts, revising the Environmental Checklist and/or permit application as necessary to reflect the changes or clarifications.

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

D. 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:

1. If the City indicates in writing specific mitigation measures which will allow it to issue a Determination of Nonsignificance in its response to the request for early notice, and the applicant changes or clarifies the proposal to include those specific mitigation measures, the City shall issue and circulate a Determination of Nonsignificance under WAC 197-11-340(2). This section shall not be construed to interfere with the City Council’s ability to impose conditions on a project or application for which it is the final decisionmaker.

2. If the City indicated areas of concern, but did not indicate specific mitigation measures that would allow it to issue a Determination of Nonsignificance, the City shall make the threshold determination, issuing a Determination of Nonsignificance or Determination of Significance, as appropriate.

3. 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 stormwater runoff” are inadequate, whereas proposals to “muffle machinery to X decibel” or “construct a 200-foot stormwater retention pond at Y location” are adequate.

4. Mitigation measures, which justify issuance of a Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance, shall be specifically identified in the Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance.

E. Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance issued under WAC 197-11-340(2) require a 14-day comment period and public notice.

F. Mitigation measures incorporated in the Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance shall be deemed both part of the proposal and 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.

G. If the City’s decisionmaker on a permit or approval does not desire to include mitigation measures that were incorporated in a Mitigated Determination of Nonsignificance for the proposal, the decisionmaker shall remand the action to the responsible official to evaluate the threshold determination to assure consistency with WAC 197-11-340(3)(a) regarding withdrawal of Determination of Nonsignificance. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 10).

14.10.110 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) – Preparation – Additional considerations.

A. The scope and preparation of draft and final Environmental Impact Statements and draft and final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statements are the responsibility of the Department of Community Development under the direction of the responsible official. Before the City issues an Environmental Impact Statement, the responsible official shall be satisfied that it complies with this chapter and Chapter 197-11 WAC.

B. The draft and final Environmental Impact Statement or Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement shall be prepared by the City, a consultant(s) selected by the City at the applicant’s request, or a consultant(s) selected by the applicant with confirmation of the Department of Community Development. The responsible official shall notify the applicant of the City’s procedure for Environmental Impact Statement preparation, including approval of the draft and final Environmental Impact Statement prior to distribution. Consultants used by the applicant to prepare the proposal are ineligible to prepare the EIS.

C. The City may require an applicant to provide information the City does not possess, including specific investigations. However, the applicant is not required to supply information that is not required under this chapter or that is being requested from another agency. This does not apply to information the City may request under another ordinance or statute.

D. Procedures for Scoping.

1. The responsible official shall consult with agencies, affected tribes, and the public when determining the scope of an Environmental Impact Statement by any or all of the following means. The specific method to be followed shall be determined on a proposal-by-proposal basis by the responsible official, but, at a minimum shall include subsection (D)(1)(a) of this section:

a. The responsible official shall give notice that an EIS is to be prepared, which notice shall provide that agencies, affected tribes and the public may submit written comments on probable significant adverse impacts, reasonable alternatives, mitigation measures, and licenses or other approvals that may be required; comments must be submitted to the responsible official not later than 21 days from the date of issuance of the Determination of Significance. When the scoping notice is issued in conjunction with a Notice of Application under RCW 36.70B.110, the comment period shall be no less than 14 days. Additionally, notice may be sent to any individuals or community groups known by the responsible official to have a possible interest in the proposal. Notice of intent to prepare an EIS and the opportunity for commenting on the scope thereof may be sent with other public notices concerning the proposal.

b. The responsible official may conduct a meeting to provide the opportunity for oral comment on the scope of the EIS. Notice of such meeting shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation at least seven days prior to the date of the meeting. The scoping meeting may be combined with other meetings or hearings concerning the proposal.

c. The responsible official may prepare or direct the EIS consultant to prepare a scoping questionnaire or information for distribution to interested parties, affected tribes and responsible public agencies for their response.

2. The appendix to the EIS shall include a summary of the issues raised during the scoping process and whether those issues have or have not been determined significant for analysis in the EIS. If a public meeting is held pursuant to this section, a tape of the meeting or a transcript thereof shall be included in the file on the proposal, except that a tape or transcript is not required if an informal workshop is held. If an informal workshop is held, a written summary of the workshop shall be prepared. All written comments regarding the scope of the EIS shall be included in the proposal file.

3. The public and agency consultation process regarding the scope of the EIS shall normally occur within 30 days after the Determination of Significance is issued, unless a later date is agreed upon by the proponent and the responsible official. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 11).

14.10.120 Using existing environmental documents.

The rules for using and supplementing existing environmental documents prepared under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) or the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for the City’s own environmental compliance are contained in this section.

A. If a proponent indicates the proposal has previously complied with environmental review procedures, then documentation of this review must be provided. For those proposals modified since the draft or final EIS was issued or not explicitly covered in the prior environmental review, an Environmental Checklist must be submitted that references earlier environmental documents where appropriate. Alternatively, a copy of, or reference to, the prior environmental document with a cover letter identifying any changes or revisions may be submitted. In the latter case, a new Environmental Checklist may be required, and in either case, other additional information may be required at the option of the responsible official. The responsible official shall determine whether a new threshold determination is required and whether existing environmental documents are adequate for the current proposal using the criteria of WAC 197-11-600.

B. When a proposal is determined to have a probable significant adverse environmental impact, and the EIS requirement for that proposal is proposed to be met by adoption of a previously prepared EIS, then a proposed Notice of Adoption shall be issued and a minimum 14-day comment period provided.

C. The responsible official shall determine whether to have a scoping hearing to take public comment about the proposal and whether those impacts are adequately addressed in the documents proposed for adoption. In deciding whether to hold a scoping hearing, consideration shall be given to the following:

1. Whether the proposal involves a rezone or changes to the comprehensive plan;

2. Whether the proposal involves a significant change in use for a site;

3. How recently the EIS proposed to be adopted was prepared;

4. How similar the new proposal is to the proposal for which the EIS was prepared; and

5. How similar the expected impacts from the new proposal are to those previously analyzed, including an assessment of the type of impact and the geographic range of the expected impact.

D. A scoping hearing shall be held for any proposal determined to have probable significant adverse environmental impacts if such a hearing is requested by at least 30 people.

E. Based on the comments received and analysis thereof, the responsible official may determine that the new proposal is substantially different from the previous proposal so that the previous EIS does not adequately analyze its significant adverse environmental impacts, or there are changed conditions or new information indicating significant adverse environmental impacts not adequately analyzed in the EIS. In such case, a supplemental EIS shall be required.

F. If the applicant indicates the proposal has been officially designated as a planned action, the responsible official shall follow the verification procedure contained in WAC 197-11-172. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 12).

14.10.130 Public notice.

A. Whenever the City issues a Determination of Nonsignificance under WAC 197-11-340(2), a Determination of Significance under WAC 197-11-360(3), an addendum to any existing environmental document or any existing environmental document as defined in MVMC 14.10.090, the City shall give public notice as follows:

1. If public notice is required through notice procedures applicable to the underlying nonexempt action, the notice shall be consistent with the requirements of the underlying action.

2. If no public notice is required for the underlying nonexempt permit or approval, the City shall give notice of the Determination of Nonsignificance or Determination of Significance as follows:

a. Posting the property for site-specific proposals;

b. Mailing notice to property owners within a 500-foot radius of the site of the proposal;

c. Publishing notice in a newspaper of general circulation in the county, city, or general area where the proposal is located; and

d. Notifying all parties of record, any individual or group which has appeared at a City of Maple Valley public hearing relating specifically to the issue of environmental review or submitted comments on the proposal.

B. Whenever the City issues a draft Environmental Impact Statement under WAC 197-11-455(5) or a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement under WAC 197-11-620, notice of the availability of those documents shall be given by:

1. Indicating the availability of the draft Environmental Impact Statement in any public notice required for a nonexempt license, and the following additional methods:

a. Posting the property for site-specific proposals;

b. Mailing notice to property owners within a 500-foot radius of the site of the proposal;

c. Publishing notice in a newspaper of general circulation in the county, city, or general area where the proposal is located; and

d. Notifying all parties of record, any individual or group which has appeared at a City of Maple Valley public hearing relating specifically to the issue of environmental review or submitted comments on the proposal.

C. Whenever possible, the City shall integrate the public notice required under this section with existing notice procedures for the City’s nonexempt permits or approvals required for the proposal.

D. If any costs are incurred beyond the initial notice of the department’s action, as provided in subsection (A)(2) of this section, the City may require an applicant to complete the public notice requirements for the applicant’s proposal at his expense. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 13).

14.10.140 Public hearings under WAC 197-11-535(2).

When a public hearing is held for any proposal undergoing concurrent environmental review, such hearing shall be open to consideration of environmental impacts associated with the proposal. Information relating to environmental concerns shall be forwarded to the responsible official. The responsible official or authorized representative may attend such hearings. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 14).

14.10.150 Designation of official to perform consulted agency responsibilities for the City.

A. The Director of the Department of Community Development shall be responsible for preparation of written comments for the City in response to a consultation request prior to a threshold determination, participation in scoping, or reviewing a draft Environmental Impact Statement.

B. The Director of the Department of Community Development shall be responsible for the City’s compliance with WAC 197-11-550 whenever the City is a consulted agency and is authorized to develop operating procedures that will ensure that responses to consultation requests are prepared in a timely fashion and include data from all appropriate departments of the City. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 15).

14.10.160 State Environmental Policy Act and agency decisions – Purpose.

This chapter contains the rules and policies for the State Environmental Policy Act substantive authority, such as decisions to mitigate or reject proposals as a result of the State Environmental Policy Act.

A. The policies and goals set forth in this chapter are supplementary to those in the existing authorization of the City.

B. The City may attach conditions to a permit or approval for a proposal so long as:

1. Such conditions are necessary to mitigate probable significant adverse environmental impacts identified in environmental documents prepared pursuant to this chapter;

2. Such conditions are in writing;

3. The mitigation measures included in such conditions are reasonable and capable of being accomplished;

4. The City has considered whether other local, State, or federal mitigation measures applied to the proposal are sufficient to mitigate the identified impacts; and

5. Such conditions are based on one or more laws or regulations as provided in this chapter and subsection (D) of this section and identified in writing in the license or other decision document.

C. The City may deny a permit or approval for a proposal on the basis of the State Environmental Policy Act so long as:

1. A finding is made that approving the proposal would result in probable significant adverse environmental impacts that are identified in a final Environmental Impact Statement or final Supplementary Environmental Impact Statement prepared pursuant to this chapter;

2. A finding is made that there are no reasonable mitigation measures capable of being accomplished that are sufficient to mitigate the identified impact; and

3. The denial is based on one or more policies identified in subsection (D) of this section and identified in writing in the license or other decision document.

D. The City designates and adopts by reference the following additional policies as the basis for the City’s exercise of authority pursuant to this section: The City formally designates the following regulations, plans, studies, reports, or codes, as presently constituted or as may be amended, as possible bases for the exercise of authority pursuant to the State Environmental Policy Act of 1971 as amended:

1. The Maple Valley Comprehensive Plan and appendices; provided, that to the extent that the Comprehensive Plan references documents and plans of other agencies that do not appear as separately referenced plans or policies listed in the subsection, those references do not constitute and should not be interpreted as official action by the City Council to endorse, adopt or in any way officially recognize those referenced documents unless legislative action by Council resolution or ordinance indicates official action to endorse or adopt the documents and plans of other agencies;

2. The Maple Valley Shoreline Master Program;

3. The Maple Valley Parks, Recreation, Cultural, and Human Services Plan;

4. The Maple Valley Municipal Code, and ordinances that amend the Maple Valley Municipal Code;

5. Current edition of the Highway Capacity Manual;

6. Current edition of the Institute of Transportation Engineers Trip Generation Manual;

7. 2009 King County Surface Water Design Manual or current version as amended through Council action;

8. Shoreline Management Guide Book;

9. Code of the Seattle-King County Board of Health;

10. Current version of the Washington State Flood Reduction Plan;

11. Washington State Wetland Delineation Manual;

12. King County Division of Parks and Recreation Play Area Design and Inspection Handbook;

13. The Maple Valley Capital Improvement Program;

14. The Maple Valley Six-Year Transportation Improvement Program;

15. The Maple Valley Road Standards;

16. Current City of Maple Valley National Pollution Discharge Elimination Permit (NPDES); and

17. Current regulations of the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency.

E. The City shall use all practicable means, consistent with other essential considerations of State policy, to improve and coordinate plans, functions, programs, and resources to the end that the State and its citizens may:

1. Fulfill the responsibilities of each generation as trustee of the environment for succeeding generations;

2. Assure for all people of the State safe, healthful, productive, and aesthetically and culturally pleasing surroundings;

3. Attain the widest range of beneficial uses of the environment without degradation, risk to health or safety, or other undesirable and unintended consequences;

4. Preserve important historic, cultural, and natural aspects of our national heritage;

5. Maintain, wherever possible, an environment which supports diversity and variety of individual choice;

6. Achieve a balance between population and resource use which will permit high standards of living and a wide sharing of life’s amenities; and

7. Enhance the quality of renewable resources and approach the maximum attainable recycling of depletable resources.

F. The City recognizes that each person has a fundamental and inalienable right to a healthful environment and that each person has a responsibility to contribute to the preservation and enhancement of the environment.

G. The authority for enforcement of conditions imposed under SEPA rests with the department or official responsible for enforcing the decision on the underlying action. (Ord. O-10-421 § 1; Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 16).

14.10.170 Appeals.

A. Administrative Appeals.

1. Procedural Appeals. The City establishes the following administrative appeal procedures under RCW 43.21C.075 and WAC 197-11-680:

a. Any agency or person who commented on the proposed action prior to final decision may appeal the City’s procedural compliance with Chapter 197-11 WAC for issuance of the following:

i. A final Determination of Nonsignificance. Appeal of the DNS must be made to the Hearing Examiner within 15 days of the date the Determination of Nonsignificance is final or as specified in the notice of the underlying action.

ii. A Determination of Significance. The appeal must be made to the Hearing Examiner within 14 days of the date the Determination of Significance is issued.

b. The decision of the Hearing Examiner shall be final, pursuant to RCW 45.21C.075(3)(a). No right to appeal the decision of the Hearing Examiner is granted by this section.

c. The procedural determination by the City’s responsible official shall carry substantial weight in any appeal proceeding.

2. Substantive Appeals. Except for permits and variances issued pursuant to the City Shoreline Master Program, when any proposal or action not requiring a decision of the City Council is conditioned, conditioned inadequately, or denied on the basis of the State Environmental Policy Act by a nonelected official, the decision shall be appealable to the Hearing Examiner. Such appeal shall be pursuant to Process 2 of the development regulations, unless a Process 2 decision is merged with a Process 3 or 4 decision pursuant to MVMC 18.100.030(D).

3. No Appeal of Threshold Determinations on Legislative Decisions. There shall be no administrative appeal of threshold determinations of legislative decisions, and the only avenue of appeal therefrom shall be through judicial review of such threshold determination.

B. Judicial Appeals.

1. When a SEPA determination applies to a governmental action, any judicial appeal of that action potentially involves both the SEPA determination and the governmental action. This section and RCW 43.21C.075 establish the time limits for appealing a SEPA determination, but existing statutes of limitation control the appeal of non-SEPA issues, and are set forth in Chapters 36.70A and 36.70C RCW, as applicable.

2. Appeals of the City’s final decision shall be filed in superior court (or the Growth Management Hearings Board, as applicable), but appellants must follow RCW 43.21C.075(6)(c), which provides that judicial review under Chapter 43.21C RCW shall without exception be of the governmental action together with its accompanying environmental determinations, which contemplates a single appeal.

3. The City shall give official notice under WAC 197-11-680(5) whenever it issues a permit or approval for which a statute or ordinance establishes a time limit for commencing judicial review. (Ord. O-10-421 § 2; Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 17).

14.10.180 Record on appeal.

Any judicial appeal under this chapter shall be on the record. The City shall provide for a record consisting of the following:

A. Findings and conclusions;

B. Testimony under oath; and

C. A taped or written transcript.

The cost of providing a taped or written transcript shall be borne by an appellant. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 18).

14.10.190 Notice of Action.

A. The City, applicant, or proponent of an action may publish a Notice of Action pursuant to RCW 43.21C.080 for any action.

B. The form of the Notice shall be substantially in the form provided in WAC 197-11-990. The City Clerk or the responsible official pursuant to RCW 43.21C.080 shall publish the Notice. An applicant’s request for publication shall include payment of the costs associated with such Notice. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 19).

14.10.200 Responsibility of agencies – State Environmental Policy Act public information.

The City shall retain all documents required by the State Environmental Policy Act, Chapter 197-11 WAC, and make them available in accordance with Chapter 42.17 RCW.

The following location constitutes the City’s State Environmental Policy Act public information center:

Department of Community Development
Maple Valley City Hall
22017 SE Wax Road, Suite 200
P.O. Box 320
Maple Valley, Washington 98038

All reasonable means will be used to make the existence and location of the City’s State Environmental Policy Act public information center known to both the public generally and the employees of the City.

The State Environmental Policy Act public information center shall contain the documents and provide the services required by this section. (Ord. O-13-529 § 1; Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 20).

14.10.210 Emergency actions.

The City Manager, or the designee thereof, shall designate when such an action constitutes an emergency under Chapter 197-11 WAC. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 21).

14.10.220 Fees.

The City shall require the following fees for its activities in accordance with the provisions of this chapter:

A. Threshold Determination. For every Environmental Checklist the City will review when it is lead agency, the City shall collect a fee for review time based on the department’s current hourly rate. When the City completes the Environmental Checklist at the applicant’s request, an additional fee shall be collected. This fee shall be based on the department’s current hourly rate.

B. Environmental Impact Statement.

1. When the City is the lead agency for a proposal requiring an Environmental Impact Statement and the Environmental Impact Statement is prepared by employees of the City, the City may charge and collect a reasonable fee from any applicant to cover costs incurred by the City in preparing the Environmental Impact Statement. Costs will be determined based upon the time spent by the City in preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement based on the department’s current hourly rate. The responsible official shall advise the applicants of the projected costs for the Environmental Impact Statement prior to actual preparation. The applicant shall post bond or otherwise ensure payment of such costs.

2. The City reserves the right under WAC 197-11-420 to contract directly with a consultant for the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement, or a portion of an Environmental Impact Statement, at the determination of the City. The City shall select consultants after a call for proposals. Consultant actions in preparing an Environmental Impact Statement or portions thereof shall be exclusively managed and administered by the City to assure that the Environmental Impact Statement is prepared in a professional manner and with appropriate interdisciplinary methodology. The applicant shall deposit the entire budget estimate or initial 30 percent with an agreed upon deposit schedule for the remainder based on the EIS schedule with the City to ensure the City will have adequate funds for payment of consultant costs and the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement. Further, the applicant shall pay the costs incurred by the City in review and administration of the consultant contract in the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement to the City. Costs will be based on the department’s current hourly rate.

C. If a proposal is modified so that an Environmental Impact Statement is no longer required, the responsible official shall refund any fees collected under subsection (B)(1) or (2) of this section which remain after incurred costs are paid.

D. State Environmental Policy Act Appeals. For every administrative appeal filed under MVMC 14.10.170(A), the City shall collect a $150.00 fee.

E. The City shall not collect a fee for performing its duties as a consulted agency.

F. The City may charge any person for copies of any document prepared under this chapter, and for mailing the document, in a manner provided by Chapter 42.17 RCW. (Ord. O-00-140 § 1; Ord. O-99-107 § 22).