Chapter 15.64


15.64.010    Findings.

15.64.020    Definitions.

15.64.030    Transportation impact fee – Capital facilities plan.

15.64.040    Public streets and roads component formula.

15.64.050    Assessment of impact fees.

15.64.060    Credits.

15.64.070    Appeals.

15.64.080    Refunds.

15.64.090    Use of funds.

15.64.100    Review.

15.64.110    Public streets and roads fees and exemptions.

15.64.120    Existing authority unimpaired.

15.64.010 Findings.

The city council finds and determines that new growth and development in the city creates additional demand and need for public streets and roads in the city, and the council finds that new growth and development should pay a proportionate share of the costs for new public streets and roads needed to serve the new growth and development in the city. Therefore, pursuant to Chapter 82.02 RCW, the council adopts the ordinance codified in this chapter to assess impact fees on new residential, commercial or industrial development within the city. The provisions of this chapter shall be liberally construed in order to carry out the purposes of this council in establishing the impact fee program. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 1, 1995)

15.64.020 Definitions.

The following words and terms shall have the following meanings for the purposes of this chapter, unless the context clearly requires otherwise. Terms otherwise not defined herein shall be defined pursuant to RCW 82.02.090 when given their usual and customary meaning:

The “Act” means the Growth Management Act, Chapter 17, Laws of 1990, First Extraordinary Session, Chapter 36.70A RCW et seq., and Chapter 32, Laws of 1991, First Special Session, as now in existence or hereinafter amended.

“Building permit” means an official document or certification which is issued by the city’s building official which authorizes the construction, alteration, enlargement, conversion, reconstruction, remodeling, rehabilitation, erection, placement, demolition, moving or repair of a building or structure.

“City” means the city of Washougal.

“Development activity” means any construction or expansion of a building or structure that creates additional demand and need for public streets and roads.

“Development approval” means any written authorization from the city which authorizes the commencement of the development activity.

“Feepayer” means a person, corporation, partnership, an incorporated association, or other similar entity, for the development or bureau of any government, entity or municipal corporation commencing a land development activity which creates the demand for additional capital facilities, which requires the issuance of a building permit. “Feepayer” includes an applicant for an impact fee credit.

“Impact fee” means the payment of money imposed by the city on development activity pursuant to this chapter as a condition of granting development approval in order to pay for the public streets and roads needed to serve new growth and development. “Impact fee” does not include a reasonable permit fee, an application fee, the administrative fee for collecting and handling impact fees, or cost of reviewing independent fee calculations.

“Impact fee deferral program” shall mean the most current program/policy established by the city council to allow for required impact fees, associated with a permit, to be deferred or paid later at a time, as established under the program/policy, when the project is closer to completion.

“Letter encumbered” means to reserve, set aside, or otherwise earmark the impact fees in order to pay for commitments, contractual obligations or other liabilities incurred for public streets and roads.

“Low-income housing” means a single-family or multifamily rental housing development, the construction of which is either undertaken by a housing authority, operating pursuant to Chapter 35.82 RCW or financially assisted pursuant to a federal, state or local governmental low-income housing program; provided, that the terms shall apply only to the number of units within such housing development which are rented to low-income tenants.

“Owner” means the owner of record of real property, or person with an unrestricted written option to purchase property; provided, that the real property is being purchased under a report of real estate contract, the purchaser shall be considered the owner of the property.

“Project improvements” means site improvements at facilities that are planned and designated to provide service for a particular development or users of the project, and are not system improvements. Any improvement of a facility included in the capital facilities plan adopted by the council should be considered a project improvement. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1664 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 2, 1995)

15.64.030 Transportation impact fee – Capital facilities plan.

In order to collect transportation impact fees, the city’s capital facilities plan shall be adopted as a portion of the city’s comprehensive land use plan.

(1) The city’s capital facilities plan shall consist of the following elements:

(a) The city’s capacity over the next six years, based upon an inventory of the city’s facilities either existing, or under construction;

(b) The forecast of future needs for public streets and roads based upon the city’s residency projections;

(c) A six-year financial plan component, updated as necessary, to maintain at least a six-year forecast for financing needed within projected funding levels;

(d) Application of the formula set out in this chapter based upon information obtained in the capital facilities plan. A separate fee should be calculated for land use designation as determined by the Trip Generation Manual, Current Edition. For purposes of this chapter, mobile homes and each unit of a duplex should be treated as a single-family dwelling.

(2) Council Action. No new or revised transportation impact fee should be effective until adopted by the council following a duly advertised public hearing to consider the city’s capital facilities plan or plan update. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 3, 1995)

15.64.040 Public streets and roads component formula.

(1) The cost per trip value (CPT) is for all uses within the city UGA. Using the cost per trip value and multiplier value taken from the Trip Generation Manual, an impact fee can be calculated for a particular land use. The Trip Generation Manual, current edition, is a reference manual prepared by the Institute of Transportation Engineers, and includes trip generation rates for multiple land uses. By finding the appropriate trip generation rate in the Trip Generation Manual and multiplying that number by the cost per trip, the correct impact fee for a specific land use can be determined.

(2) The cost per daily weekday trip shall be established by the transportation capital facilities plan for the current year.

(3) The impact fee component for the purpose of public streets and roads shall be calculated using the following formula:

Impact Fee = CPT × Number of Daily Trips1, 2, 3

1For some retail commercial land uses, a “business enhancement factor (BEF)” adjustment may be provided based on the City of Washougal Traffic Impact Fee Business Enhancement Factor (BEF) Program Technical Document in effect at the time of a technically complete application.

2For some land uses (e.g., retail), a substantial amount of traffic is already passing by the property and merely interrupts a trip between two other locations. These pass-by trips do not add to the impact on the surrounding street system. As a result, pass-by trips are subtracted from the total trips generated by each type of land use. The remaining trips are considered “new” to the street system and are therefore subject to TIF calculation. Pass-by trip percentages are derived primarily from ITE data and from available surveys conducted around the country.

3The TIF fee will be reduced for the current documented transportation trips to a development site.

(4) The number of daily trips and the transportation impact fee shall be determined by the community development director or a designee, using the Trip Generation Manual, latest edition, as a guide. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1740 § 1 (Exh. A), 2013; Ord. 1665 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010; Ord. 1636 § 1, 2009; Ord. 1613 § 1 (Exh. A), 2008; Ord. 1567 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 4, 1995)

15.64.050 Assessment of impact fees.

(1) The city shall collect impact fees from any applicant seeking residential, commercial or industrial development approval from the city for any development activity within the city, where such development activity requires the issuance of a building permit or is a new use of a property. This may include the expansion of existing uses which create the demand for additional transportation facilities.

(2) Impact fees shall be assessed at the time a sufficiently completed building application that complies with zoning ordinances and building codes is submitted for each unit in the development. Impact fees shall be collected from the feepayer at the time the building permit is issued, or at a time approved through the impact fee deferral program, for each unit of the development. In the case of manufactured homes and associated parks, impact fees shall be collected at the time of site plan approval. When a single manufactured or mobile home is being placed on a single lot, impact fees should be collected at the time a building permit is issued. Impact fees shall be assessed at the time of site plan review approval for other uses subject to transportation impact fees.

(3) Except if otherwise exempt, the city should not issue the required building permit unless or until the impact fees have been paid. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1664 § 1 (Exh. A), 2010; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 5, 1995)

15.64.060 Credits.

A feepayer can request that a credit, or credits, can be awarded to him/her for the value of dedicated land, improvements, and/or construction provided by the feepayer, with the land, improvements and/or the facilities plan or the city makes the finding that such land, improvements, and/or facilities would serve the goals and objectives of the capital facilities plan. The feepayer shall direct the request for a credit or credits to the city. The city shall first determine the suitability of land, improvements and/or construction for the city’s purposes. Second, the city shall determine whether the land, improvements and/or the facility constructed are included within the city’s adopted capital facilities plan, or the council for the city may make the finding that such land, improvements and/or facilities would serve the goals and objectives of the capital facilities plan of the city. The city will make a determination as to whether dedicated land, improvements and/or construction are suitable for the city’s purposes. The city may decline to award a credit, or the city may make an alternative determination and set forth in writing a rationale for the alternative determination. In the event the land improvements and/or facilities are accepted by the city, the feepayer shall be responsible for supplying an independent appraiser, based on objective standards which indicate the fair market value of the dedicated land, improvements and/or facilities. The credited amount shall be applied to the impact fee calculated for the particular development. If the amount of the credit is less than the amount of the fee, the feepayer shall pay the difference. In the event the amount exceeds the amount of the impact fee due and owed by the feepayer, the city shall not be liable to the feepayer for the difference. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1740 § 1 (Exh. A), 2013; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 6, 1995)

15.64.070 Appeals.

Any feepayer may pay the impact fees imposed by this chapter under protest in order to obtain a building permit.

(1) Appeals regarding impact fees imposed on any development activity may only be taken by the feepayer of the property where such development activity will occur. No appeal shall be permitted unless and until the impact fee at issue has been paid.

(2) Determination of the city staff in respect to the applicability of impact fees to a given development activity or the availability of value of a credit can be appealed to the city council pursuant to this section.

(3) An appeal should be taken within 10 working days of payment of the fee, or within 10 working days of the city’s issuance of a written determination of a credit or exemption decision, by filing with the city notice of an appeal specifying the grounds thereon and depositing the necessary fee, which is set forth in the existing fee schedules for appeals of land use decisions. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1740 § 1 (Exh. A), 2013; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 7, 1995)

15.64.080 Refunds.

If the city fails to expend or encumber the impact fees within the time period specified in RCW 82.02.070 from the date the fees are paid, unless extraordinary or compelling reasons exist, the current owner of the property on which impact fees have been paid shall receive a refund of such fees.

(1) The city shall notify the potential claimants, by first class mail to the claimants, that they are entitled to a refund. Determining whether impact fees have been expended or encumbered, impact fees should be considered expended or encumbered on a first-in, first-out basis.

(2) Owners seeking a refund of impact fees must submit a written request for refunds of the fees to the city within one year of the date the right to claim the refund arises or the notice is given, whichever comes later.

(3) Any impact fees for which no application for a refund has been made within the one-year period shall be retained by the city and expended on appropriate public facilities.

(4) Refunds of impact fees under this section shall include any interest earned on the impact fees by the city. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1758 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1740 § 1 (Exh. A), 2013; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 8, 1995)

15.64.090 Use of funds.

(1) Pursuant to this chapter on impact fees:

(a) This chapter shall be used for public streets and roads that will reasonably benefit the city and its residents;

(b) Shall not be forced to make up for deficiencies in city facilities serving an existing development; and

(c) Shall not be used for maintenance or operation.

(2) Impact fees shall be spent for public improvements, including, but not limited to, land acquisition, site improvements, construction, engineering, architectural, permitting, financing and administrative expenses, applicable impact fees and mitigation costs, capital equipment pertaining to public streets and roads and any other expenses which can be capitalized.

(3) Impact fees may also be used to recoup public improvements costs incurred by the city to the extent that new growth and development will be served by the previously constructed improvements or incurred costs.

(4) In the event that bonds or similar debt instruments are, or have been, issued for the advanced provision of public improvements for which impact fees may be expended, impact fees may be used to pay the principal on such bonds or similar debt instruments to the extent that the facilities or improvements provided are consistent with the requirements of this section and are used to serve the new development. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 9, 1995)

15.64.100 Review.

Impact fees shall be reviewed by the council, as it may be necessary and appropriate, in conjunction with the capital facilities plan update and the city’s comprehensive plan. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 10, 1995)

15.64.110 Public streets and roads fees and exemptions.

The public streets and roads fees set forth herein are generated from the formula for calculating the impact fees as set forth in this chapter. The amount of the impact fees is determined by information contained in the capital facilities plan of the city, as appended to the city’s comprehensive plan. All new developments located in the city will be charged a transportation impact fee; provided, that the following exemptions shall apply.

Any development activity or project which has submitted a technically complete building permit application, prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, shall be exempted from the payment of impact fees. The following will be exempted from payment of impact fees:

(1) Replacement of a structure with a new structure at the same site or lot, when such replacement is within 12 months, or for a longer time period approved by the director, of demolition or destruction of the prior structure;

(2) Alteration, or expansion, or enlargement or remodeling or rehabilitation or conversion of an existing dwelling where no additional units are created and the use is not changed;

(3) The construction of an accessory residential structure that will not create an impact on transportation facilities;

(4) Miscellaneous improvements, including but not limited to fences, walls, swimming pools and signs;

(5) Demolition or moving of an existing structure within the city;

(6) The impact fee shall not be applied to housing that, by restrictive covenants, is exclusively for persons 62 years of age or older. If the development for which approval is sought contains a mix of uses, the impact fee must be separately calculated for each type of use;

(7) Low-income housing developed by individuals, not-for-profit, or housing authority may be exempted from impact fees at the discretion of the city staff. Exemptions may be granted subject to:

(a) Fiscal impact analysis of the effect of the exemption upon the low-income household in the public sector,

(b) Adequate documentation that the housing meets appropriate standards regarding household income, rent levels, sale prices, locations and number of units, and

(c) Adequate documentation that the housing will remain available to low-income households for a suitable time period;

(8) The city staff may grant a total or partial exemption from impact fees for housing developments not qualifying as low-income housing, but to be owned and occupied by or leased to low-income persons; provided, that any such exemption shall be subject to:

(a) Provision being made for payment of impact fees from public funds, other than impact fee accounts, and

(b) Adequate documentation that the housing meets appropriate standards regarding household income, rent levels, sale price, location and number of units, and

(c) In the case of rental dwellings, adequate documentation of such housing shall remain exclusively available to low-income households at affordable rents for a minimum period of 15 years, and

(d) In the case of owner-occupied dwellings, adequate documentation that such housing will only be sold or leased at affordable rates to a low-income household for a period of 10 years, and

(e) Adequate documentation in the event that the use of the property requiring the required period is no longer used for low-income housing, the owner shall pay the impact fee, plus interest from which the owner or any prior owner was exempt;

(9) Upon application, the developer, supported by studies and data, may request from the city a reduction or elimination of the impact fee, based on unusual circumstances of specific cases. Determination by the city on whether development should be exempt from payment of any impact fees or whether the impact fee amount shall be reduced shall be appealed pursuant to WMC 15.64.070;

(10) The impact fee for exempt development shall be calculated as provided for in the chapter and paid for with public funds. Such payment may be made by including such amounts in the public share of the system improvements undertaken within the applicable service area. (Ord. 1884 § 1 (Exh. A), 2019; Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1740 § 1 (Exh. A), 2013; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 11, 1995)

15.64.120 Existing authority unimpaired.

Nothing in this chapter shall preclude the city from requiring the feepayer or the proponent of the development activity to mitigate adverse and environmental impacts of a specific development, pursuant to the State Environmental Policy Act, Chapter 43.21C RCW, based on the environmental developments accompanying the underlying development approval process, and/or Chapter 58.17 RCW, governing plats and subdivisions; provided, that the exercise of this authority is consistent to Chapters 43.21C and 82.02 RCW. (Ord. 1769 § 1 (Exh. A), 2014; Ord. 1542 § 1, 2006; Ord. 1471 § 1, 2004; Ord. 1181 § 12, 1995)