Chapter 14.10


14.10.010    Sewer schedule of system development charges and connection charges.

14.10.020    Low-income/senior housing facilities.

14.10.030    Payment of charges.

14.10.040    Protests to fees and charges.

*Prior legislation: Ords. 2383, 2384, 2414, 2423, 2459, 2481, 2495, 2536 and 2588.

14.10.010 Sewer schedule of system development charges and connection charges.

(1) System development charges include pro rata shares of the costs of existing and planned facilities. Revenues from system development charges minimize the impact to existing customers to construct new facilities required to accommodate growth. System development charges are stated in terms of cost per ERU (equivalent residential unit) and are specified in the most recently adopted sewer system development charge study. Each new connection to the sewer system shall pay a system development charge calculated by multiplying the SDC rate ($/ERU) as specified in the most recent budget adopted by the city council by the number of ERUs as shown on the following schedule:

SDC ERU Schedule

Water Customer Description

No. of ERUs

Single-family dwelling


Accessory dwelling units




First unit


Each additional unit


Mobile home subdivision, pad


Recreational vehicle park, each space


Motel/hotel, each unit


Hospital, rest home, each 6 beds




First 15 fixture unit weights


Each additional fixture unit weight


The fixture unit weight shall be calculated from the “Drainage Systems” chapter of the Uniform Plumbing Code.

(2) Should the city elect to make the actual physical connection between the building and the sewer system, the actual costs, including direct and indirect costs, shall be charged as connection charges. (Ord. 3267 § 1 (Exh. A), 2023; Ord. 3203 § 2, 2019; Ord. 3115 § 1, 2016; Ord. 2806 § 1, 2004; Ord. 2593 § 1, 1999).

14.10.020 Low-income/senior housing facilities.

(1) Senior, low-income housing sewer system development charges (SDCs) shall be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, utilizing winter water consumption data from at least two similar (“comparable”) projects.

(a) Water consumption data from comparable projects shall be analyzed, calculating the average water use per occupied unit.

(b) The average water use per occupied unit shall then be compared to the average water use for an equivalent residential unit (ERU).

(c) The SDCs shall be assessed based on this comparison (average water use per unit/ERU multiplied by the current charge for an ERU).

(2) The public works department shall determine the suitability of comparable projects and shall perform or approve the data gathering and calculations set forth above. It is the intent of the city that these evaluations ensure that the impact of the proposed development on the city’s existing system and CIP is recovered fully. (Ord. 2689 § 1, 2001; Ord. 2593 § 1, 1999).

14.10.030 Payment of charges.

(1) System development charges for sewer service shall be paid prior to the issuance of a project’s building permit(s), or the applicant may elect to pay prior to the issuance of a project’s temporary certificate(s) of occupancy, if any, or certificate(s) of occupancy, whichever certificate is issued first. If an election to pay system development charges after building permit issuance is made, the applicant shall pay system development charges for sewer and/or water service prior to the time of certificate of occupancy, but in no event later than 18 months from the date of building permit issuance. The city shall require the applicant to sign and record an instrument against title to the property and therein agree that the system development charges shall be paid no later than 18 months from the date of building permit issuance.

(2) Applicants opting to delay payment of system development charges shall pay any recording or related fees or costs associated with recording the required instrument. No permit will be issued prior to the city receiving proof of the recording of an instrument securing payment with the Pierce County auditor.

(3) The option to delay payment of system development charges shall only be applicable to charges assessed by the city, and shall be available to applicants who file a complete building permit application after this subsection becomes effective pursuant to law, or to applicants who have previously filed a complete building permit application, but where a building permit has not yet been issued. The director may decline to allow a delay of the payment of system development charges for good cause. (Ord. 3246 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022; Ord. 3233 § 1, 2021; Ord. 3219 § 1, 2020; Ord. 3207 § 1, 2020; Ord. 2988 § 1, 2011; Ord. 2965 § 1, 2010; Ord. 2593 § 1, 1999).

14.10.040 Protests to fees and charges.

(1) If any customer is dissatisfied with a fee or charge imposed in this chapter, the customer may file a written protest with the director setting forth their objections, provided such protest is filed within 15 calendar days of the assessment of the fee or charge and prior to issuance of the underlying building permit.

(2) Upon receipt of any such protest, the director or a designee shall, within 15 calendar days, request additional information or make a determination in writing as to the correctness of the fee or charge. The director’s determination shall be limited to considering whether the fee is correctly calculated. Once the director has made a determination as to the correctness of the calculation of any fee or charge, any adjustment requested by the customer or proposed by the director or any hearing examiner pursuant to appeal under Chapter 2.54 PMC must be approved by city council. Any city council adjustment must be based on the submission of an alternative fee study finding that any reduced fee constitutes a pro rata share of the costs of existing and planned facilities. The responsibility and expense of any alternative fee study shall be borne by the customer and performed by a qualified professional approved by the director.

(3) If the customer is dissatisfied with the director’s determination, the customer may appeal to the Puyallup hearing examiner pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 2.54 PMC, provided such appeal is filed within 10 calendar days of receipt of the director’s decision. Any decision of city council regarding any adjustment made or denied pursuant to subsection (2) of this section shall not be appealable except as may be allowed under state law. (Ord. 3246 § 1 (Exh. A), 2022; Ord. 2593 § 1, 1999).