Chapter 17.60


17.60.010    Purpose.

17.60.020    Permit required.

17.60.030    Application process.

17.60.040    Exemptions.

17.60.045    Minimum standards.

17.60.047    Departures.

17.60.050    Approval criteria.

17.60.055    Event and temporary use permits – Chief of police authority.

17.60.060    Time limitation.

17.60.070    Limitation on activity.

17.60.080    Required conditions.

17.60.090    Abatement.

17.60.100    Assurance device.

17.60.010 Purpose.

To provide an administrative approval process whereby the city may permit uses to locate within the city on an interim basis without requiring full compliance with the development standards for the applicable zoning district, or by which the city may allow seasonal or transient uses not otherwise permitted. Under this chapter, the city may impose conditions on a temporary use permit to protect the public health, safety and welfare. Consistent with RCW 35.21.915, this chapter includes provision for temporary tent encampments for the homeless as defined in Chapter 17.08 PTMC. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.020 Permit required.

A. Applicability. No temporary use shall be permitted within the city except in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. A temporary use permit is required for temporary uses except those specifically exempted pursuant to PTMC 17.60.040. The director shall have authority to grant, grant with conditions, or deny an application; provided, that the director shall have no authority to modify the limits established in PTMC 17.60.070.

B. Who May Apply.

1. Temporary Tent Encampments. The sponsor or managing agency may apply for a temporary use to permit an encampment on property owned or controlled by the sponsor as defined in this title.

2. All Other Temporary Use Permits. The property owner or the owner’s agent may apply for a temporary use permit on private property. Any person may apply for a temporary use permit within a public right-of-way. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.030 Application process.

A. Applications. The application for a temporary use permit shall be submitted on forms obtained from the director of the development services department. The application shall be acknowledged by the property owner.

B. Procedure. The director shall verify that the application is consistent with the requirements of this chapter, and that the application contains proof of a city business license, if applicable.

C. Approval Process.

1. Applications for temporary tent encampments shall be processed as Type II permits, in accordance with the administrative approval procedures of Chapter 20.01 PTMC and enforced in accordance with the procedures detailed in Chapter 1.20 PTMC.

2. All other temporary uses shall be processed as Type I permits, in accordance with the administrative approval procedures of Chapter 20.01 PTMC and enforced in accordance with the procedures detailed in Chapter 1.20 PTMC. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.040 Exemptions.

The following activities are exempt from the permit requirements of this chapter, but shall otherwise comply with the substantive requirements of this chapter, unless specifically noted otherwise:

A. Contractors’ offices, model homes, on- and off-site contractors’ construction yards and other temporary structures in conjunction with an approved development application. Such uses shall be subject to the time limitation set forth in PTMC 17.60.060, but may be renewed immediately upon expiration at the discretion of the director of the development services department;

B. Garage and yard sales; and

C. City-sponsored uses and activities not occurring within a structure, and occurring at regular periodic intervals (i.e., weekly, monthly, yearly, etc.). (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.045 Minimum standards.

Temporary tent encampments for the homeless shall comply with the following minimum standards unless modified by the director:

A. The encampment shall be located on a previously disturbed site with a minimum setback of 40 feet from the property line of abutting properties containing single-family residential, schools, or public recreational uses; and 20 feet from the property line of all other developed properties unless the director finds that a reduced buffer width will provide adequate separation between the encampment and adjoining uses, due to changes in elevation, intervening buildings or other physical characteristics of the site of the encampment.

B. With the exception of aquifer recharge or seismic hazard areas, encampments shall not be located within a confirmed critical area or associated buffers as defined by Chapter 19.05 PTMC.

C. Fencing shall be erected around the perimeter of the encampment to delineate the boundary of the encampment and provide visual relief to the surrounding neighborhood unless the director determines that there is sufficient vegetation, topographic variation, or other site condition such that fencing would not be needed. In any case, fencing:

1. Shall meet the requirements of the underlying zone (e.g., setbacks, height);

2. Shall comply with Chapter 17.68 PTMC when situated in a residential zoning district;

3. Shall not create a sight obstruction at the street or street intersections or curbs as determined by the city engineer; and

4. Shall not inhibit safety and security as determined by the director in consultation with the chief of police.

D. Lighting shall provide for the safety and security of the inhabitants of the encampment. All lighting shall be directed downward and glare contained within the temporary tent encampment.

E. The maximum number of residents at a temporary tent encampment site shall be determined by the director taking into consideration site conditions, but in no case shall the number be greater than 30 people.

F. On-site parking of the sponsor shall not be displaced unless sufficient required off-street parking remains available for the host’s use to compensate for the loss of on-site parking or unless a shared parking agreement is executed with adjacent properties.

G. The sponsor or managing agency shall submit a transportation plan, including provision for transit services, for the director’s review and approval.

H. No children under 18 are allowed to stay overnight in the temporary tent encampment, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian. If a child under the age of 18 without a parent or guardian present attempts to stay at the encampment, the sponsor or managing agency shall immediately contact Child Protective Services and shall actively endeavor to find alternative shelter for the child.

I. The sponsor or managing agency shall provide and enforce a written code of conduct, which not only provides for the health, safety and welfare of the temporary tent encampment resident, but also mitigates impacts to neighbors and the community. A copy of the code of conduct shall be submitted to the city at the time of application for the temporary use permit. Said code shall be incorporated into the conditions of approval and shall address, at a minimum:

1. No drugs or alcohol;

2. No weapons or violence;

3. Limit on open fires – no more than one fire meeting the requirements of the IFC;

4. No loitering in the surrounding neighborhood;

5. Quiet hours.

J. The sponsor and the managing agency shall ensure compliance with Washington State laws and regulations, the Port Townsend Municipal Code, and Jefferson County Code concerning, but not limited to, drinking water connections, food handling and storage, solid waste disposal, human waste and electrical systems. The sponsor and the managing agency shall coordinate with the Jefferson County public health department prior to permit approval and arrange for inspections by state and/or local agencies and/or departments to ensure such compliance and shall implement all directives resulting therefrom within the specified time period.

K. One toilet shall be provided at a ratio of 1:15. If sanitary portable toilets are used, at least one shall be ADA accessible, and all shall be set back at least 40 feet from all property lines.

L. Hand-washing stations shall be provided in the toilets and food preparation areas.

M. The sponsor and the managing agency shall designate points of contact available seven days a week/24 hours a day. At least one designated point of contact shall be on site and on duty at all times. The names of the on-duty points of contact shall be posted on site daily and their contact information shall be provided to the police department.

N. Facilities for dealing with trash shall be provided on site throughout the encampment. A regular trash patrol in the immediate vicinity of the temporary tent encampment site shall be provided.

O. The sponsor and the managing agency shall take all reasonable and legal steps to obtain verifiable identification from current and prospective encampment residents and use the identification to obtain sex offender and warrant checks from appropriate agencies. The sponsor and the managing agency shall keep a log of names and dates of all people who stay overnight in the temporary tent encampment.

P. The sponsor and the managing agency shall immediately contact the police department if someone is rejected or ejected from the encampment when the reason for rejection or ejection is an active warrant or a match on a sex offender check, or if, in the opinion of the on-duty point of contact or on-duty security staff, the rejected/ejected person is a potential threat to the community.

Q. Tents over 300 square feet in size and canopies in excess of 400 square feet shall utilize flame retardant materials.

R. The sponsor, the managing agency and temporary tent encampment residents shall cooperate with other providers of shelters and services for homeless persons within the city and shall make inquiry with these providers regarding the availability of existing resources. (Ord. 3154 §§ 4(6) (Exh. H), 4(9) (Exh. K), 2016).

17.60.047 Departures.

The director may approve a temporary use permit for a temporary tent encampment that relaxes one or more of the minimum standards in this chapter only when, in addition to satisfying the approval criteria of PTMC 17.60.050, the applicant submits a description of the standard to be modified and demonstrates how the modification would result in a safe encampment with minimal negative impact to the host community under the specific circumstances of the application. In considering whether the modification should be granted, the director shall first consider the effects on the health and safety of encampment residents and the neighboring communities. Modifications shall not be granted if their adverse impact on encampment residents and/or neighboring communities will be greater than those without the modification. The burden of proof shall be on the applicant. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016).

17.60.050 Approval criteria.

The director of the development services department may approve, or modify and approve, an application for a temporary use permit if all of the following criteria are satisfied:

A. The temporary use will not be materially detrimental to the public health, safety or welfare, nor injurious to property or improvements in the immediate vicinity. To this end, temporary tent encampments shall comply with the minimum standards set forth in PTMC 17.60.045;

B. The temporary use is compatible with the purpose and intent of this title, and the specific zoning district in which it will be located;

C. The temporary use is compatible in intensity and appearance with existing land uses in the immediate vicinity;

D. Structures proposed for the temporary use comply with the setback and clear vision area requirements of this title, and with applicable provisions of the building and fire codes;

E. Adequate parking is available to serve the temporary use, and, if applicable, the temporary use does not occupy required off-street parking facilities for adjacent or nearby uses;

F. Hours of operation of the temporary use are specified;

G. The temporary use will not cause noise, light, or glare which adversely impacts surrounding land uses; and

H. If applicable, the applicant has obtained approval of a street use agreement pursuant to Chapter 12.10 PTMC. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.055 Event and temporary use permits – Chief of police authority.

In issuing any event permit or temporary use permits for use of the right-of-way or any public space, the chief of police (or designee), in consultation with the development services director and the public works director, is authorized to establish conditions and restrictions for the event to ensure public safety, including conditions that restrict others’ use of the area set aside for the event or use.

For example:

A. The chief could grant a permit holder the right to use portions of streets or sidewalks (subject to conditions to maintain public access and ensure safety). For example, a permit to a festival could allow the festival the authority to use certain sidewalks for event purposes (such as tables and booths) in the discretion of the permit holder, so long as minimum access standards set by the chief were maintained for safety of the public.

B. Chief could grant a permit for exclusive use of the sidewalk as part of an event. For example, a permit for an event at a building that also included outside activities could also include use of a defined area around the building (with conditions to ensure safety). (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 3091 § 2, 2014).

17.60.060 Time limitation.

A temporary use is valid for up to 180 calendar days from the effective date of the permit; however, the director of the development services department may establish a shorter time frame. The director may grant one extension not to exceed 60 days, upon the applicant showing compliance with all conditions of permit approval. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.070 Limitation on activity.

A. A property owner or other holder of a temporary use permit may not file an application for a successive temporary use permit for 60 days following the expiration of an approved permit applying to that property.

B. Only one temporary tent encampment shall be located in the city at any time. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.080 Required conditions.

The director of the development services department shall establish, as a condition of each temporary use permit:

A. A time within which the use and all physical evidence of the use must be removed.

B. If the applicant has not removed the use as required by the temporary use permit, the city may abate the use as provided in PTMC 17.60.090.

C. Applicant shall obtain a city business license, if applicable. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.090 Abatement.

Prior to the approval of a temporary use permit, the applicant shall submit to the director of the development services department an irrevocable, signed and notarized statement granting the city permission to summarily enter the applicant’s property with reasonable notice and abate the temporary use, and all physical evidence of that use if it has not been removed as required by the terms of the permit. The statement shall also indicate that the applicant will reimburse the city for any expenses incurred in abating a temporary use under the authority of this chapter. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016; Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).

17.60.100 Assurance device.

In appropriate circumstances, the director of the development services department may require a reasonable performance of maintenance assurance device, in a form acceptable to the city attorney, to assure compliance with the provisions of this title and the temporary use permit as approved. (Ord. 3154 § 4(6) (Exh. H), 2016;  Ord. 2892 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2571 § 2, 1997).