Chapter 17.08


17.08.010    Purpose.

17.08.020    Substantive authority.

17.08.030    Adoption of SEPA rules.

17.08.040    Designation of SEPA responsible official.

17.08.050    Categorical exemptions.

17.08.060    Preparation of EIS.

17.08.010 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to highlight the environmental review requirements of the city and to integrate the provisions of the Washington State Growth Management Act and the Washington State Environmental Policy Act. (Ord. 2104 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022)

17.08.020 Substantive authority.

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

A. The city may attach conditions to a permit or approval for the proposal so long as:

1. Such conditions are necessary to mitigate specific probable adverse 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 policies in this title and cited in the license or other decision document.

B. The city may deny a permit or approval for a proposal on the basis of a SEPA review so long as:

1. A finding is made that approving the proposals would result in probable significant adverse environmental impacts that are identified in a FEIS (final EIS) or final SEIS 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 this title and identified in writing in the decision document.

C. The city designates and adopts by reference the following policies and documents as the basis for the county’s exercise of authority pursuant to this section:

1. The city of Newport comprehensive plan as it now exists or is subsequently amended;

2. The Pend Oreille County shoreline management plan as it now exists or is subsequently amended;

3. 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:

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

b. Assure for all people safe, healthful, productive, and aesthetically and culturally pleasing surroundings;

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

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

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

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

g. Enhance the quality of renewable resources and approach the maximum attainable recycling of depletable resources. (Ord. 2104 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022)

17.08.030 Adoption of SEPA rules.

The city adopts Chapter 197-11 WAC by reference unless otherwise noted or modified by the provisions of this title. (Ord. 2104 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022)

17.08.040 Designation of SEPA responsible official.

For those proposed projects, development activities, or actions for which the city is the lead agency, the SEPA responsible official shall be the mayor or his/her designee. (Ord. 2104 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022)

17.08.050 Categorical exemptions.

All proposed projects or development activities are subject to the provisions of this chapter and Chapter 197-11 WAC except those activities that are identified in WAC 197-11-800 as being categorically exempt from SEPA; provided, that:

A. The following new construction activities are exempt from the provisions of this chapter and Chapter 197-11 WAC unless the site contains critical areas:

1. The construction or location of up to four dwelling units;

2. The construction of a barn, loafing shed, farm equipment storage building, produce storage, or packing structure, or similar agricultural structure, covering up to 10,000 square feet; provided, that said structure complies with all other provisions of the city code and is to be used by the property owner or his or her agent in the conduct of permitted farming of the property;

3. The construction of an office, school, commercial, recreational, service, or storage building with up to 12,000 square feet and associated parking facilities designed for no more than 40 automobiles;

4. The construction of a parking lot designed for up to 20 automobiles; or

5. Any landfill or excavation of 100 cubic yards throughout the total lifetime of the fill or excavation.

B. The city’s determination that a proposal is exempt shall be final and not subject to appeal. If a proposal is exempt, none of the procedural requirements of this chapter apply to the proposal. The city shall not require completion of an environmental checklist for an exempt proposal.

C. If a proposal includes exempt and nonexempt actions, the city may authorize exempt actions prior to compliance with the procedural requirements of this chapter, except that the city shall not give authorization for:

1. Any nonexempt action;

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

3. Any action that would limit the reasonable choice of alternatives. (Ord. 2104 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022)

17.08.060 Preparation of EIS.

Preparation and issuance of a draft and final EIS (DEIS and FEIS) or a draft and final supplemental EIS (SEIS) is the responsibility of the city. The DEIS and FEIS or draft and final SEIS shall be prepared by a qualified consultant selected by the city in consultation with the proposed project sponsor. All costs associated with the preparation and issuance of an EIS document shall be the responsibility of the applicant or proposed project sponsor in accordance with the provisions of the city fee schedule and/or voluntary cost sharing agreement. (Ord. 2104 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022)