Chapter 18D.40
ENVIRONMENTAL REVIEW

Sections:

18D.40.010    Environmental Checklist.

18D.40.020    Affirmative Threshold Determination.

18D.40.030    Withdrawal of Negative or Affirmative Threshold.

18D.40.040    Environmental Impact Statement.

18D.40.050    Public Notice.

18D.40.060    Substantive Authority.

18D.40.070    Notice – Statute of Limitations.

18D.40.080    Fees for Environmental Assessments and Environmental Impact Statements.

18D.40.010 Environmental Checklist.

A.    A completed environmental checklist (or a copy), in the form provided in WAC 197-11-960, shall be filed for any permit, license, certificate, or other approval not specifically exempted in this Chapter; except, a checklist is not needed if the County and applicant agree an EIS is required, SEPA review has been completed, or SEPA compliance has been initiated by another agency. The County shall use the environmental checklist to determine the lead agency and for making the threshold determination.

B.    All private applicants shall complete their own environmental checklist, with assistance from Pierce County as necessary. County departments initiating a proposal shall complete the environmental checklist for that proposal.

C.    The County may require that it, rather than the private applicant, complete all or part of the environmental checklist for a private proposal, if either of the following occurs:

1.    The County has access to technical information not available to the private applicant; or

2.    The applicant has provided inaccurate information on previous proposals or on proposals currently under consideration.

(Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.020 Affirmative Threshold Determination.

In the event the Responsible Official determines that a proposal is likely to have a significant adverse effect on the quality of the environment, the Responsible Official shall prepare a determination of significance using the form in WAC 197-11-980. The Responsible Official shall also list the proposal in the "EIS in Preparation Register" maintained in the Planning and Public Works Department. Thereafter, the EIS and scoping and preparation procedures specified by WAC 197-11-408 through and including 197-11-460 shall be followed. (Ord. 2017-12s § 2 (part), 2017; Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.030 Withdrawal of Negative or Affirmative Threshold Determination.

In some cases, as specified by WAC 197-11-340, 197-11-360 and 197-11-600, the County may withdraw its affirmative or negative threshold determination. (Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.040 Environmental Impact Statement.

A.    Pierce County adopts by reference WAC 197-11-400 through 197-11-460, as now or hereafter amended. The contents and preparation procedures for draft environmental impact statements shall be governed by the SEPA rules herein or as hereafter amended. Timelines for County review time during preparation of an EIS are established in Section 18D.10.070.

B.    Preparation of the draft and final EIS (DEIS and FEIS) and draft and final supplemental EIS (DSEIS and FSEIS) shall be under the direction of the Responsible Official. Before the County issues an EIS/SEIS, the Responsible Official shall be satisfied that it complies with this Chapter and WAC Chapter 197-11.

1.    The DEIS and FEIS or DSEIS and FSEIS shall be prepared by County staff, the applicant, or by a consultant selected by the County or the applicant. If the Responsible Official requires an EIS/SEIS for a proposal and determines that someone other than the County will prepare the EIS/SEIS, the Responsible Official shall notify the applicant within five working days after completion of the threshold determination. The Responsible Official shall also notify the applicant of the County's procedure for EIS/SEIS preparation, including approval of the DEIS, FEIS, DSEIS, and FSEIS prior to distribution.

2.    The County may require an applicant to provide information the County does not possess, including specific investigations. However, the applicant is not required to supply information not required under this Chapter or information requested from another agency pursuant to this Chapter.

C.    Public notice for issuance of a DEIS, FEIS, DSEIS, and FSEIS shall comply with provisions set forth in Chapter 18.80, Development Regulations – General Provisions.

(Ord. 97-84 § 4 (part), 1997; Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.050 Public Notice.

Public notice for issuance of a Determination of Nonsignificance, Determination of Significance, or EIS, FEIS, DSEIS, and FSEIS is set forth in Chapter 18.80, Development Regulations – General Provisions. (Ord. 97-84 § 4 (part), 1997; Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.060 Substantive Authority.

A.    The policies and goals set forth in this Chapter supplement existing State and County laws of Pierce County.

B.    The County may attach conditions to a permit or approval for a proposal provided that:

1.    Such conditions are necessary to mitigate specific probable adverse environmental impacts identified in environmental documents prepared pursuant to this Chapter; and

2.    Such conditions are in writing; and

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

4.    The County 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 subsection D. of this Section and cited in the license or other decision document.

C.    The County may deny a permit or approval for a proposal on the basis of SEPA provided that:

1.    A finding is made that approval of the proposal would result in probable significant adverse environmental impacts that are identified in a FEIS or final SEIS prepared pursuant to this Chapter; and

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 decision document.

D.    The County adopts the following policies as the basis for the County's exercise of authority pursuant to this Section:

1.    The County shall use all practicable means, consistent with other essential considera-tions of state policy, to improve and coordinate plans, functions, programs, and resources to the end that the state and its citizens may:

a.    Endeavor to achieve for the people of Pierce County safe, healthful, and aesthetically pleasing surroundings;

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

c.    Achieve a balance between population and resource use; and

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

2.    The following Pierce County planning documents as now existing or hereafter amended, shall supplement this Chapter:

a.    Title 19A, Pierce County Comprehensive Plan

b.    Title 19B, Community Plans

c.    Title 19D, Other Comprehensive Planning Documents including but not limited to: Pierce County Coordinated Water System Plan, Pierce County Comprehensive Park, Recreation and Open Space Plan, etc.

d.    The Lakes District Comprehensive Plan

e.    The Hylebos Basin Drainage Plan

f.    The 144th Street Drainage Basin Plan

g.    Interim HUD Flood Insurance Study for Pierce County

h.    Burley/Minter Drainage Basin Water Quality Plan

i.    Lower Puyallup Watershed Action Plan and Phase 1 Report

j.    Chambers-Clover Creek Watershed Action Plan and Characterization

k.    Key Peninsula-Gig Harbor-Islands Watershed Action Plan and Characterization

l.    Housing Assistance Plan

m.    Transportation Plan and Six Year Transportation Improvement Program

n.    Tacoma-Pierce County Solid Waste Management Plan

o.    Tacoma-Pierce County Local Hazardous Waste Management Plan

p.    Unified Sewer Plan for the Pierce County Wastewater Utility

3.    The following Pierce County regulations and codes as now existing or hereafter amended, shall supplement this Chapter:

a.    Title 18, Development Regulations – General Provisions

b.    Title 18A, Development Regulations – Zoning

c.    Title 18B, Development Regulations – Signs

d.    Title 18E, Development Regulations – Critical Areas

e.    Title 18H, Development Regulations – Forest Practices and Tree Conservation

f.    Title 18I, Development Regulations – Natural Resource Lands

g.    Title 18J, Development Regulations – Design Standards and Guidelines

h.    Title 16, Subdivisions and Platting

i.    Title 20, Shoreline Management Use Regulations

j.    Title 17A, Construction and Infrastructure Regulations – Site Development and Stormwater Drainage

k.    Title 17B, Construction and Infrastructure Regulations – Road and Bridge Design and Construction Standards

l.    Title 17C, Construction and Infrastructure Regulations – Building and Fire Codes

m.    Pierce County Fair Housing Regulations

n.    Noise Pollution Control Regulations

o.    Title 8, Pierce County Code, Health and Welfare

p.    Chapter 2.88, Pierce County Code, Structures of Historical and Architectural Significance

q.    Pierce County Regulations for Proposed Developments Using Local Access Roads

r.    Pierce County Flood Damage Prevention Regulations

s.    Title 13, Pierce County Code, Public Sanitary Sewer Systems

4.    The following State laws, policies, ordinances, resolutions, programs and master site plans as now existing or hereafter amended, shall supplement this Chapter:

a.    Chapter 173-308 WAC, Biosolids Management

b.    Chapter 173-350, Solid Waste Handling Standards

c.    Chapter 173-351, Criteria for Municipal Solid Waste Landfills

d.    Pierce County Utilities Department Sludge Management Program

e.    Pierce County Storm Drainage Ordinance

f.    The Pierce County Fire Flow Ordinance

g.    Interim HUD Flood Insurance Study for Pierce County

h.    Pierce County Off-Site Road Improvement Ordinance

i.    Chambers Creek Properties Master Site Plan

j.    Rocky Bay Shellfish Protection Program

k.    Burley Lagoon Shellfish Protection Program

(Ord. 2004-58s § 4 (part), 2004; Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.070 Notice – Statute of Limitations.

A.    The County, applicant for, 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 notice shall be published by the applicant or proponent pursuant to RCW 43.21C.080.

(Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)

18D.40.080 Fees For Environmental Assessments and Environmental Impact Statements.

A.    Fees are listed in Chapter 2.05.

B.    Environmental Assessment/Checklist fees for the construction, alteration, or repair of one-family or two-family dwellings shall be waived when the application provides sufficient documentation showing, to the satisfaction of the Environmental Official, who shall make written findings, that all of the following conditions exist:

1.    The one-family or two-family dwelling is intended for low-income families. Low income families are those families who meet the low-income guidelines as set forth by the Pierce County Department of Community and Economic Development; Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) annual guidelines, Section 8;

2.    The construction, alteration, or repair of the one-family or two-family dwelling involves some volunteer labor; and

3.    The construction, alteration, or repair is being undertaken by an organization classified as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization by the Internal Revenue Service.

(Ord. 96-19S § 3 (part), 1996)