County SMP Implementation Question to the Kitsap Alliance Website

From: AAAA
To: Kitsap Alliance of Property Owners Website
Sent: Fri, Feb 1, 2013
Subject: Question or Comment from Kitsap Alliance Website

I am currently studying a residential project for a client on a Hood Canal waterfront parcel. What is your best guess as to when it will be law? when will it be enforced, if prior to that, and what steps are left in the process. Thanks for your assistance

Initial Response 1

From: KAPOadmin
To: AAAA
Sent: Friday, February 01, 2013
Subject: Re: Question or Comment from Kitsap Alliance Website

AAAA
I assume you are talking about the Kitsap County SMP. The next step is to forward the document to the Department of Ecology for review and approval. DOE will most likely have a public hearing. My guess is late spring with action (Approval or return for corrections) in the May/June time frame. After approval I expect the County planners will start enforcement almost immediately (Summer).

Follow up Response

From: Kitsap Alliance of Property Owners
To: AAAA
Sent: Fri, Feb 1, 2013
Subject: Re: Question or Comment from Kitsap Alliance Website

AAAA,

KAPOadmin has advised you with the best information that we have. I would add the comment that we do not know how DOE will react to Kitsap County’s SMP. They could approve it as the County has adopted it. They could approve it in part. If improved in part they could remand the portions of the SMP they do not like for a re-do. Or they could send the whole SMP back to the county without approving any portion of it and request that the County fix what they do not like before forwarding it back to DOE.

So here we are “in the meantime.” My best advice to you and your client is to move forward with your project as fast as possible. It would have been better if it could have been submitted before January 30, 2013. Then there would have been no mystry as to what ordinance would be used to review your client’s proposed project. Now there is a “cloud” of sorts, because the County has in fact adopted a new SMP. Yet it is not an enforceable ordinance until it is approved also by the Department of Ecology. The lack of enforceability says that the prior existing SMP is still in effect. I believe that is the case, but an opinion from an attorney would be better than my views.

The questions that is on my mind is: What is the new Shoreline Environment Designation for your Client’s property verses the prior existing Shoreline Environment Designation under the 1998 SMP? Under the 1998 SMP much of Hood Canal was/is? Rural designated. Single-Family Residential was/is an exempt activity. Meaning you could build a house without the necessity of Shoreline Substantial Development Permit (SSDP) approval or a Shoreline Conditional Use Permit. The latter was a requirement in the “Conservancy Environment.” Oddly enough a 100 FT buffer requirement kicked in the building permit process in the Residential and Semi-Rural Environments. By contrast, the more restrictive “Concervancy Environment” had/has only a 50 FT buffer requirement.

Under the County’s new SMP, Hood Canal has a mixture of Shoreline Conservancy, Shoreline Residential and Natural Environments. Single-family detached residential is still an excempt activity in Shoreline Conservancy and Shoreline Residential Environments. In Natural Environments a Shoreline Conditional Use Permit is required. Keep in mind the 35′ height limit for an exempt activity and note the measurement point from average grade is the highest point on the roof. That is different from the IBC and the Zoning Ordinance calculation proceedures. Also note there is an 85 foot buffer requirement, which can be reduced to 50 feet with “mitigation plantings” in Shoreline Conservancy and Shoreline Residential Environments. The Natural Environment has a 200 foot buffer requirement. The possible reduction in a Natural Enviroment’s buffer is down to 150 feet. Besides the buffer there is an additional 15 foot setback requirement for structures and impervious surface areas.

Perhaps you are aware of the above. Never-the-less these are the additional comments that merit consideration as you are advising you client how to proceed.

KITSAP ALLIANCE of Property Owners

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