Chapter 19.07


19.07.020    Purpose.

19.07.040    Preliminary consideration of application.

19.07.050    Survey of subdivision and preparation of plat.

19.07.065    On-site identification posting.

19.07.070    Application of environmental analysis and impact statement.

19.07.080    Departmental review.

19.07.090    Approval criteria.

19.07.100    Summary approval.

19.07.105    Effect of final approval.

19.07.110    Modifications or variations.

19.07.020 Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to regulate the division of land into four or less lots, tracts, parcels, sites or subdivisions; establish regulations and procedures for the administrative summary approval of short plats and short subdivisions or revisions thereof; and require filing of a short plat for record in the office of the county auditor. (Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.040 Preliminary consideration of application.

Any person considering the short plat of land is advised to discuss this matter with the appropriate city staff before any plans are drawn. This shall be an informal review of the proposed plat where recommendations can be offered to the extent of advising the applicant of the criteria relative to conformance with city comprehensive plan, such as proper arrangement of planned streets and roads, planned physical development and improvement of the city; and to insure and provide adequate and convenient open spaces for traffic, utilities, emergency access, recreation, light and air, and for the avoidance of congestion of the population. (Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.050 Survey of subdivision and preparation of plat.

Applications for short plat shall be submitted on forms provided by the department of community development. The completed application shall be submitted to the department of community development, and shall include the information specified in PMC 19.02.100 and any other information as may be required by the Pierce County auditor as a condition of recording. The entire original tract (except adjacent platted or short platted land) shall be included within one short plat application; provided, that a pre-existing, unplatted adjacent parcel may also be excluded if it is five acres or greater in size. (Ord. 2748 § 1, 2003; Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.065 On-site identification posting.

(1) Identification Marker Posting. The subdivider shall, for identification purposes only, cause markers of a type approved by the city to be placed upon each of the road frontage corners of the subject land and maintain them thereon during the period extending from the time of application to the time of final action for the purpose of permitting field checks of the proposed short plat.

(2) Posting of Other Data and Markers. Where other data or where identification markers are found necessary by any relevant agency to assist it in making its determination, such data and markers shall be placed upon the land and maintained thereon during the period extending from the time of application to the time of final action for the purpose of permitting field checks by the applicable agencies.

(3) Consent to Access. The subdivider shall permit free access to the land being subdivided to all agencies considering the short subdivision for the period of time extending from the time of application to the time of final action. (Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.070 Application of environmental analysis and impact statement.

All actions by the city in approving a short plat shall be exempt from any environmental analysis or environmental impact statement, unless the responsible SEPA official determines that said short plat is located wholly or partially within “critical areas” authorized by WAC 197-11-908. “Critical areas” is defined by PMC 21.06.210(24) as any area which:

(1) Contains wetlands, fish and wildlife habitat areas, critical aquifer recharge areas, geologically hazardous areas, and frequently flooded areas as defined by PMC 21.06.210; or

(2) Contains elements having significant aesthetic, recreational or historical value; or

(3) Is within “shorelines of the state” as defined in the Shoreline Management Act of 1971. (Ord. 3073 § 2, 2014; Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.080 Departmental review.

(1) The city public works department shall review a short plat for adequacy of access, storm drainage facilities, water supply, sewer system, survey accuracy, feasibility for building sites.

(2) The development services department1 shall review the proposed short plat for conformance with zoning laws, the comprehensive plan and environmental regulations.

(3) The health department shall review the proposed short plat for adequacy of septic tank conditions.

(4) The fire code official shall review the proposed short plat for adequacy of emergency vehicle access and fire protection water system. (Ord. 3119 § 6, 2016; Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.090 Approval criteria.

Short plats shall comply with the design principles, standards and specifications set forth in Chapter 19.12 PMC, and shall not:

(1) Result in a lot, tract, parcel, site or division which contains insufficient area or dimension to meet the minimum requirements for area and dimension as set forth in the land use and health codes and regulation;

(2) Diminish or impair drainage, water supply, existing sanitary sewage disposal, and access or easement for vehicles, utilities, and fire protection for any lot, tract, parcel, site or division;

(3) Diminish historical use of any easement or deprive any parcel of access or utilities; or

(4) Increase the nonconforming aspects of any existing nonconforming lot relative to the city’s zoning and land use regulations. (Ord. 2748 § 1, 2003; Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.100 Summary approval.

(1) City Review and Approval. Each city department shall complete its review and either approve, approve with conditions, or disapprove a proposed short plat within 30 days after the short plat is filed. Initial approval of a short plat by city departments shall be valid for one year from the date that formal notification is mailed to the applicant. Within said one year time frame, the applicant shall refile a final short plat with the city. Department directors must sign the final short plat and, only after the recording of the final short plat with the county auditor, the short plat shall be deemed approved.

(2) Notice of Return to Applicant for Cause. If a short plat is not in proper order or cannot be approved in its present form, a letter shall be sent to the applicant within 28 days to notify the applicant why approval cannot be given in its present form.

(3) Effect of Approval. The approval of a short plat shall not be a guarantee that future permits will be granted for any structures or development within said area and a notation to this effect shall be stated on the face of the short plat.

(4) Certificates. The following declarations and certificates must be obtained prior to final approval of a short plat subdivision:

(a) A declaration of short subdivision;

(b) Certification of approval by the community development director or designee and public works director or designee when they find, within their municipal function, that the short plat serves the intent of this title and complies with all adopted recommendations for approval;

(c) The community development director or designee shall require any other certificates, that may be deemed appropriate, as required or specified for a major final plat.

(5) Appeal, if Aggrieved. Any person aggrieved by the decision (i.e., denial, approval, or any conditions of said approval) of the community development director or the public works director may file an appeal of that decision to the hearing examiner. Such appeals for hearing examiner review of short plat decisions must be filed within 10 business days from the date the administrative written decision was made and shall include the following: be processed in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 20.87 PMC.

(a) The appeal shall be filed in writing on forms provided by the community development director.

(b) The appeal shall clearly state the decision being appealed, setting forth the specific reasons, rationale, and/or basis for the appeal.

(c) Fees associated with such appeals shall be paid to the city upon filing of the appeal in accordance with a fee schedule established by resolution. If the appeal has been timely filed and complies with the requirements of this section, the hearing examiner shall conduct an open record public hearing into the merits of the appeal at which the examiner shall hear and receive testimony, documentary evidence, and arguments from the appellant(s) solely on the issues raised or identified by the appeal.

(d) The person(s) filing the appeal shall have the burden of going forward with the evidence and the ultimate burden of persuasion.

(e) Notice of any public hearing held pursuant to this section shall be provided as specified in PMC 2.54.100.

(f) The examiner may continue the hearing from time to time without further mailed or delivered notice.

(g) Appeal hearings held by the examiner pursuant to this section shall be de novo.

(h) The examiner’s decision shall become final 10 business days from the date of issuance.

The examiner’s decision on the appeal shall take the form of an appeal approval, approval with further conditions, disapproval, or remand of the decision to staff for reconsideration per direction of the examiner. (Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.105 Effect of final approval.

All lots in a short plat subdivision that have been granted under the provisions of this chapter shall be filed with the Pierce County auditor and shall not be deemed “approved” until so filed; such land in a short plat subdivision shall not be further divided in any manner within a period of five years without the filing of a final plat under the provisions of a major subdivision as set forth in this title, all as provided in Chapter 58.17 RCW. (Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).

19.07.110 Modifications or variations.

Any subdivider may make application to the community development department for a variation or modification from the city’s development requirements, standards and specifications. Any request for variation or modification of requirements, standards or specifications established by administrative authority shall be considered in accordance with the process specified in the enabling document. Any request for variation or modification from requirements, standards or specifications set forth in the Puyallup Municipal Code shall be considered by the city’s hearing examiner as set forth in PMC 19.02.080, and processed in accordance with the variance provisions set forth in Chapter 20.85 PMC. Such application shall be submitted prior to or accompany the proposed short plat, shall include any and all details as the developer deems necessary to support his application properly, and shall outline the provisions from which the modification or variation is sought. (Ord. 2591 § 2, 1999).


Code reviser’s note: Ord. 3119 originally referred to the “community development services department.” It has been changed to “development services department” to reflect the intent of the city.