Title 17G Administration and Procedures
Chapter 17G.060 Land Use Application Procedures
State law and the shoreline master program specifically exempt certain types of development from the requirement of obtaining a shoreline substantial development permit. The types of development that are exempted are listed in SMC 17E.060.300 and WAC 173-27-040. No exempt development, use or activity shall be undertaken within the jurisdiction of the Shoreline Management Act (chapter 90.58 RCW or its successor) and the shoreline master program unless a statement of exemption has been obtained from the director. Burden of proof that a development or use is exempt from the permit process is on the applicant.
Application procedure for a letter of exemption from a shoreline substantial development permit is the same as for any shoreline permit as defined in SMC 17G.060.070 with these additional application materials:
Written explanation of exemption type as defined in SMC 17E.060.300 and WAC 173-27-040.
A contractor’s bid to verify the total cost or fair market value of the proposal including labor and material, if the proposed exemption category is below the dollar threshold defined in WAC 173-27-040.
A statement from a structural engineer licensed by the State of Washington to verify the need for immediate action, in order to address the imminent threat to public health and safety on the property, if proposed exemption category is for emergency construction as defined in WAC 173-27-040.
All development within the shoreline, even when an exemption from the requirement of a substantial development permit is granted, must be consistent with the policies of the Shoreline Management Act and the shoreline master program. Conditions may be attached to the approval of a shoreline exemption in order to assure consistency of the project with the Shoreline Management Act and the shoreline master program (WAC 173-27-040).
A letter of exemption from a shoreline substantial development permit is not always an exemption from a shoreline conditional use permit or a shoreline variance. A development or use that is listed as a conditional use pursuant to the SMP regulations or is an unlisted use, must obtain a conditional use permit even though the development or use does not require a substantial development permit. When a development or use is proposed that does not comply with the bulk, dimensional and performance standards of the master program, such development or use can only be authorized by approval of a variance (WAC 173-27-040).
In the case of shoreline projects with federal permit review and upon completion of a letter of exemption, the director must submit to ecology:
Letter of exemption.
What is being approved; and
Conditions of approval.
It must also state the specific exemption provision from WAC 173-27-040 and SMC 17E.060.300 and provide a summary of analysis of the consistency of the project with the SMP and the SMA. It shall contain any SEPA determination made and include the permit data sheet and transmittal letter form (WAC 173-27-990 Appendix A).
The director shall review watershed restoration projects as defined in WAC 173-27-040 for consistency with the SMP and shall issue a decision along with any conditions within forty-five days of receiving from the applicant all materials necessary to review the request for exemption. No fee may be charged for accepting and processing requests for exemption for watershed restoration projects as defined in WAC 173-27-040.
Date Passed: Monday, January 11, 2016
Effective Date: Wednesday, February 24, 2016
ORD C35342 Section 5