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Chapter 90.58 RCW Shoreline management act of 1971
90.58.010 Short title.
90.58.020 Legislative findings -- State policy enunciated -- Use preference.
90.58.030 Definitions and concepts.
90.58.040 Program applicable to shorelines of the state.
90.58.045 Environmental excellence program agreements -- Effect on chapter.
90.58.050 Program as cooperative between local government and state -- Responsibilities differentiated.
90.58.060 Review and adoption of guidelines -- Public hearings, notice of -- Amendments.
90.58.065 Application of guidelines and master programs to agricultural activities.
90.58.070 Local governments to submit letters of intent -- Department to act upon failure of local government.
90.58.080 Timetable for local governments to develop or amend master programs -- Review of master programs -- Grants.
90.58.090 Approval of master program or segments or amendments -- Procedure -- Departmental alternatives when shorelines of statewide significance -- Later adoption of master program supersedes departmental program.
90.58.100 Programs as constituting use regulations -- Duties when preparing programs and amendments thereto -- Program contents.
90.58.110 Development of program within two or more adjacent local government jurisdictions -- Development of program in segments, when.
90.58.120 Adoption of rules, programs, etc., subject to RCW 34.05.310 through 34.05.395 -- Public hearings, notice of -- Public inspection after approval or adoption.
90.58.130 Involvement of all persons and entities having interest, means.
90.58.140 Development permits -- Grounds for granting -- Administration by local government, conditions -- Applications -- Notices -- Rescission -- Approval when permit for variance or conditional use.
90.58.143 Time requirements -- Substantial development permits, variances, conditional use permits.
90.58.147 Substantial development permit -- Exemption for projects to improve fish or wildlife habitat or fish passage.
90.58.150 Selective commercial timber cutting, when.
90.58.160 Prohibition against surface drilling for oil or gas, where.
90.58.170 Shorelines hearings board -- Established -- Members -- Chairman -- Quorum for decision -- Expenses of members.
90.58.175 Rules and regulations.
90.58.180 Appeals from granting, denying, or rescinding permits -- Board to act -- Local government appeals to board -- Grounds for declaring rule, regulation, or guideline invalid -- Appeals to court.
90.58.185 Appeals involving single-family residences or involving penalties of fifteen thousand dollars or less -- Composition of board -- Rules to expedite appeals.
90.58.190 Appeal of department's decision to adopt or amend a master program.
90.58.195 Shoreline master plan review -- Local governments with coastal waters or coastal shorelines.
90.58.200 Rules and regulations.
90.58.210 Court actions to insure against conflicting uses and to enforce -- Civil penalty -- Review.
90.58.220 General penalty.
90.58.230 Violators liable for damages resulting from violation -- Attorney's fees and costs.
90.58.240 Additional authority granted department and local governments.
90.58.250 Intent -- Department to cooperate with local governments -- Grants for development of master programs.
90.58.260 State to represent its interest before federal agencies, interstate agencies and courts.
90.58.270 Nonapplication to certain structures, docks, developments, etc., placed in navigable waters -- Nonapplication to certain rights of action, authority.
90.58.280 Application to all state agencies, counties, public and municipal corporations.
90.58.290 Restrictions as affecting fair market value of property.
90.58.300 Department as regulating state agency -- Special authority.
90.58.310 Designation of shorelines of statewide significance by legislature -- Recommendation by director, procedure.
90.58.320 Height limitation respecting permits.
90.58.340 Use policies for land adjacent to shorelines, development of.
90.58.350 Nonapplication to treaty rights.
90.58.355 Hazardous substance remedial actions -- Procedural requirements not applicable.
90.58.360 Existing requirements for permits, certificates, etc., not obviated.
90.58.370 Processing of permits or authorizations for emergency water withdrawal and facilities to be expedited.
90.58.380 Adoption of wetland manual.
90.58.390 Certain secure community transition facilities not subject to chapter.
90.58.515 Watershed restoration projects -- Exemption.
90.58.550 Oil or natural gas exploration in marine waters -- Definitions -- Application for permit -- Requirements -- Review -- Enforcement.
90.58.560 Oil or natural gas exploration -- Violations of RCW 90.58.550 -- Penalty -- Appeal.
90.58.570 Consultation before responding to federal coastal zone management certificates.
90.58.600 Conformance with chapter 43.97 RCW required.
90.58.900 Liberal construction -- 1971 ex.s. c 286.
90.58.910 Severability -- 1971 ex.s. c 286.
90.58.911 Severability -- 1983 c 138.
90.58.920 Effective date -- 1971 ex.s. c 286.
Marine oil pollution -- Baseline study program: RCW 43.21A.405 through 43.21A.420.
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Shoreline Management Act of 1971".
[1971 ex.s. c 286 § 1.]
Legislative findings — State policy enunciated — Use preference.
The legislature finds that the shorelines of the state are among the most valuable and fragile of its natural resources and that there is great concern throughout the state relating to their utilization, protection, restoration, and preservation. In addition it finds that ever increasing pressures of additional uses are being placed on the shorelines necessitating increased coordination in the management and development of the shorelines of the state. The legislature further finds that much of the shorelines of the state and the uplands adjacent thereto are in private ownership; that unrestricted construction on the privately owned or publicly owned shorelines of the state is not in the best public interest; and therefore, coordinated planning is necessary in order to protect the public interest associated with the shorelines of the state while, at the same time, recognizing and protecting private property rights consistent with the public interest. There is, therefor, a clear and urgent demand for a planned, rational, and concerted effort, jointly performed by federal, state, and local governments, to prevent the inherent harm in an uncoordinated and piecemeal development of the state's shorelines.
It is the policy of the state to provide for the management of the shorelines of the state by planning for and fostering all reasonable and appropriate uses. This policy is designed to insure the development of these shorelines in a manner which, while allowing for limited reduction of rights of the public in the navigable waters, will promote and enhance the public interest. This policy contemplates protecting against adverse effects to the public health, the land and its vegetation and wildlife, and the waters of the state and their aquatic life, while protecting generally public rights of navigation and corollary rights incidental thereto.
The legislature declares that the interest of all of the people shall be paramount in the management of shorelines of statewide significance. The department, in adopting guidelines for shorelines of statewide significance, and local government, in developing master programs for shorelines of statewide significance, shall give preference to uses in the following order of preference which:
(1) Recognize and protect the statewide interest over local interest;
(2) Preserve the natural character of the shoreline;
(3) Result in long term over short term benefit;
(4) Protect the resources and ecology of the shoreline;
(5) Increase public access to publicly owned areas of the shorelines;
(6) Increase recreational opportunities for the public in the shoreline;
(7) Provide for any other element as defined in RCW 90.58.100 deemed appropriate or necessary.
In the implementation of this policy the public's opportunity to enjoy the physical and aesthetic qualities of natural shorelines of the state shall be preserved to the greatest extent feasible consistent with the overall best interest of the state and the people generally. To this end uses shall be preferred which are consistent with control of pollution and prevention of damage to the natural environment, or are unique to or dependent upon use of the state's shoreline. Alterations of the natural condition of the shorelines of the state, in those limited instances when authorized, shall be given priority for single family residences and their appurtenant structures, ports, shoreline recreational uses including but not limited to parks, marinas, piers, and other improvements facilitating public access to shorelines of the state, industrial and commercial developments which are particularly dependent on their location on or use of the shorelines of the state and other development that will provide an opportunity for substantial numbers of the people to enjoy the shorelines of the state. Alterations of the natural condition of the shorelines and shorelands of the state shall be recognized by the department. Shorelines and shorelands of the state shall be appropriately classified and these classifications shall be revised when circumstances warrant regardless of whether the change in circumstances occurs through man-made causes or natural causes. Any areas resulting from alterations of the natural condition of the shorelines and shorelands of the state no longer meeting the definition of "shorelines of the state" shall not be subject to the provisions of chapter 90.58 RCW.
Permitted uses in the shorelines of the state shall be designed and conducted in a manner to minimize, insofar as practical, any resultant damage to the ecology and environment of the shoreline area and any interference with the public's use of the water.
[1995 c 347 § 301; 1992 c 105 § 1; 1982 1st ex.s. c 13 § 1; 1971 ex.s. c 286 § 2.]
Notes: Finding -- Severability -- Part headings and table of contents not law -- 1995 c 347: See notes following RCW 36.70A.470.
Definitions and concepts.
As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires, the following definitions and concepts apply:
(a) "Department" means the department of ecology;
(b) "Director" means the director of the department of ecology;
(c) "Local government" means any county, incorporated city, or town which contains within its boundaries any lands or waters subject to this chapter;
(d) "Person" means an individual, partnership, corporation, association, organization, cooperative, public or municipal corporation, or agency of the state or local governmental unit however designated;
(e) "Hearing board" means the shoreline hearings board established by this chapter.
(a) "Extreme low tide" means the lowest line on the land reached by a receding tide;
(b) "Ordinary high water mark" on all lakes, streams, and tidal water is that mark that will be found by examining the bed and banks and ascertaining where the presence and action of waters are so common and usual, and so long continued in all ordinary years, as to mark upon the soil a character distinct from that of the abutting upland, in respect to vegetation as that condition exists on June 1, 1971, as it may naturally change thereafter, or as it may change thereafter in accordance with permits issued by a local government or the department: PROVIDED, That in any area where the ordinary high water mark cannot be found, the ordinary high water mark adjoining salt water shall be the line of mean higher high tide and the ordinary high water mark adjoining fresh water shall be the line of mean high water;
(c) "Shorelines of the state" are the total of all "shorelines" and "shorelines of statewide significance" within the state;
(d) "Shorelines" means all of the water areas of the state, including reservoirs, and their associated shorelands, together with the lands underlying them; except (i) shorelines of statewide significance; (ii) shorelines on segments of streams upstream of a point where the mean annual flow is twenty cubic feet per second or less and the wetlands associated with such upstream segments; and (iii) shorelines on lakes less than twenty acres in size and wetlands associated with such small lakes;
(e) "Shorelines of statewide significance" means the following shorelines of the state:
(i) The area between the ordinary high water mark and the western boundary of the state from Cape Disappointment on the south to Cape Flattery on the north, including harbors, bays, estuaries, and inlets;
(ii) Those areas of Puget Sound and adjacent salt waters and the Strait of Juan de Fuca between the ordinary high water mark and the line of extreme low tide as follows:
(A) Nisqually Delta -- from DeWolf Bight to Tatsolo Point,
(B) Birch Bay -- from Point Whitehorn to Birch Point,
(C) Hood Canal -- from Tala Point to Foulweather Bluff,
(D) Skagit Bay and adjacent area -- from Brown Point to Yokeko Point, and
(E) Padilla Bay -- from March Point to William Point;
(iii) Those areas of Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca and adjacent salt waters north to the Canadian line and lying seaward from the line of extreme low tide;
(iv) Those lakes, whether natural, artificial, or a combination thereof, with a surface acreage of one thousand acres or more measured at the ordinary high water mark;
(v) Those natural rivers or segments thereof as follows:
(A) Any west of the crest of the Cascade range downstream of a point where the mean annual flow is measured at one thousand cubic feet per second or more,
(B) Any east of the crest of the Cascade range downstream of a point where the annual flow is measured at two hundred cubic feet per second or more, or those portions of rivers east of the crest of the Cascade range downstream from the first three hundred square miles of drainage area, whichever is longer;
(vi) Those shorelands associated with (i), (ii), (iv), and (v) of this subsection (2)(e);
(f) "Shorelands" or "shoreland areas" means those lands extending landward for two hundred feet in all directions as measured on a horizontal plane from the ordinary high water mark; floodways and contiguous floodplain areas landward two hundred feet from such floodways; and all wetlands and river deltas associated with the streams, lakes, and tidal waters which are subject to the provisions of this chapter; the same to be designated as to location by the department of ecology.
(i) Any county or city may determine that portion of a one-hundred-year-flood plain to be included in its master program as long as such portion includes, as a minimum, the floodway and the adjacent land extending landward two hundred feet therefrom.
(ii) Any city or county may also include in its master program land necessary for buffers for critical areas, as defined in chapter 36.70A RCW, that occur within shorelines of the state, provided that forest practices regulated under chapter 76.09 RCW, except conversions to nonforest land use, on lands subject to the provisions of this subsection (2)(f)(ii) are not subject to additional regulations under this chapter;
(g) "Floodway" means those portions of the area of a river valley lying streamward from the outer limits of a watercourse upon which flood waters are carried during periods of flooding that occur with reasonable regularity, although not necessarily annually, said floodway being identified, under normal condition, by changes in surface soil conditions or changes in types or quality of vegetative ground cover condition. The floodway shall not include those lands that can reasonably be expected to be protected from flood waters by flood control devices maintained by or maintained under license from the federal government, the state, or a political subdivision of the state;
(h) "Wetlands" means areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or ground water at a frequency and duration sufficient to support, and that under normal circumstances do support, a prevalence of vegetation typically adapted for life in saturated soil conditions. Wetlands generally include swamps, marshes, bogs, and similar areas. Wetlands do not include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland sites, including, but not limited to, irrigation and drainage ditches, grass-lined swales, canals, detention facilities, wastewater treatment facilities, farm ponds, and landscape amenities, or those wetlands created after July 1, 1990, that were unintentionally created as a result of the construction of a road, street, or highway. Wetlands may include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland areas to mitigate the conversion of wetlands.
(3) Procedural terms:
(a) "Guidelines" means those standards adopted to implement the policy of this chapter for regulation of use of the shorelines of the state prior to adoption of master programs. Such standards shall also provide criteria to local governments and the department in developing master programs;
(b) "Master program" shall mean the comprehensive use plan for a described area, and the use regulations together with maps, diagrams, charts, or other descriptive material and text, a statement of desired goals, and standards developed in accordance with the policies enunciated in RCW 90.58.020;
(c) "State master program" is the cumulative total of all master programs approved or adopted by the department of ecology;
(d) "Development" means a use consisting of the construction or exterior alteration of structures; dredging; drilling; dumping; filling; removal of any sand, gravel, or minerals; bulkheading; driving of piling; placing of obstructions; or any project of a permanent or temporary nature which interferes with the normal public use of the surface of the waters overlying lands subject to this chapter at any state of water level;
(e) "Substantial development" shall mean any development of which the total cost or fair market value exceeds five thousand dollars, or any development which materially interferes with the normal public use of the water or shorelines of the state. The dollar threshold established in this subsection (3)(e) must be adjusted for inflation by the office of financial management every five years, beginning July 1, 2007, based upon changes in the consumer price index during that time period. "Consumer price index" means, for any calendar year, that year's annual average consumer price index, Seattle, Washington area, for urban wage earners and clerical workers, all items, compiled by the bureau of labor and statistics, United States department of labor. The office of financial management must calculate the new dollar threshold and transmit it to the office of the code reviser for publication in the Washington State Register at least one month before the new dollar threshold is to take effect. The following shall not be considered substantial developments for the purpose of this chapter:
(i) Normal maintenance or repair of existing structures or developments, including damage by accident, fire, or elements;
(ii) Construction of the normal protective bulkhead common to single family residences;
(iii) Emergency construction necessary to protect property from damage by the elements;
(iv) Construction and practices normal or necessary for farming, irrigation, and ranching activities, including agricultural service roads and utilities on shorelands, and the construction and maintenance of irrigation structures including but not limited to head gates, pumping facilities, and irrigation channels. A feedlot of any size, all processing plants, other activities of a commercial nature, alteration of the contour of the shorelands by leveling or filling other than that which results from normal cultivation, shall not be considered normal or necessary farming or ranching activities. A feedlot shall be an enclosure or facility used or capable of being used for feeding livestock hay, grain, silage, or other livestock feed, but shall not include land for growing crops or vegetation for livestock feeding and/or grazing, nor shall it include normal livestock wintering operations;
(v) Construction or modification of navigational aids such as channel markers and anchor buoys;
(vi) Construction on shorelands by an owner, lessee, or contract purchaser of a single family residence for his own use or for the use of his or her family, which residence does not exceed a height of thirty-five feet above average grade level and which meets all requirements of the state agency or local government having jurisdiction thereof, other than requirements imposed pursuant to this chapter;
(vii) Construction of a dock, including a community dock, designed for pleasure craft only, for the private noncommercial use of the owner, lessee, or contract purchaser of single and multiple family residences. This exception applies if either: (A) In salt waters, the fair market value of the dock does not exceed two thousand five hundred dollars; or (B) in fresh waters, the fair market value of the dock does not exceed ten thousand dollars, but if subsequent construction having a fair market value exceeding two thousand five hundred dollars occurs within five years of completion of the prior construction, the subsequent construction shall be considered a substantial development for the purpose of this chapter;
(viii) Operation, maintenance, or construction of canals, waterways, drains, reservoirs, or other facilities that now exist or are hereafter created or developed as a part of an irrigation system for the primary purpose of making use of system waters, including return flow and artificially stored ground water for the irrigation of lands;
(ix) The marking of property lines or corners on state owned lands, when such marking does not significantly interfere with normal public use of the surface of the water;
(x) Operation and maintenance of any system of dikes, ditches, drains, or other facilities existing on September 8, 1975, which were created, developed, or utilized primarily as a part of an agricultural drainage or diking system;
(xi) Site exploration and investigation activities that are prerequisite to preparation of an application for development authorization under this chapter, if:
(A) The activity does not interfere with the normal public use of the surface waters;
(B) The activity will have no significant adverse impact on the environment including, but not limited to, fish, wildlife, fish or wildlife habitat, water quality, and aesthetic values;
(C) The activity does not involve the installation of a structure, and upon completion of the activity the vegetation and land configuration of the site are restored to conditions existing before the activity;
(D) A private entity seeking development authorization under this section first posts a performance bond or provides other evidence of financial responsibility to the local jurisdiction to ensure that the site is restored to preexisting conditions; and
(E) The activity is not subject to the permit requirements of RCW 90.58.550;
(xii) The process of removing or controlling an aquatic noxious weed, as defined in RCW 17.26.020, through the use of an herbicide or other treatment methods applicable to weed control that are recommended by a final environmental impact statement published by the department of agriculture or the department jointly with other state agencies under chapter 43.21C RCW.
[2003 c 321 § 2; 2002 c 230 § 2; 1996 c 265 § 1. Prior: 1995 c 382 § 10; 1995 c 255 § 5; 1995 c 237 § 1; 1987 c 474 § 1; 1986 c 292 § 1; 1982 1st ex.s. c 13 § 2; 1980 c 2 § 3; 1979 ex.s. c 84 § 3; 1975 1st ex.s. c 182 § 1; 1973 1st ex.s. c 203 § 1; 1971 ex.s. c 286 § 3.]
Notes: Finding -- Intent -- 2003 c 321: "(1) The legislature finds that the final decision and order in Everett Shorelines Coalition v. City of Everett and Washington State Department of Ecology, Case No. 02-3-0009c, issued on January 9, 2003, by the central Puget Sound growth management hearings board was a case of first impression interpreting the addition of the shoreline management act into the growth management act, and that the board considered the appeal and issued its final order and decision without the benefit of shorelines guidelines to provide guidance on the implementation of the shoreline management act and the adoption of shoreline master programs.
(2) This act is intended to affirm the legislature's intent that:
(a) The shoreline management act be read, interpreted, applied, and implemented as a whole consistent with decisions of the shoreline hearings board and Washington courts prior to the decision of the central Puget Sound growth management hearings board in Everett Shorelines Coalition v. City of Everett and Washington State Department of Ecology;
(b) The goals of the growth management act, including the goals and policies of the shoreline management act, set forth in RCW 36.70A.020 and included in RCW 36.70A.020 by RCW 36.70A.480, continue to be listed without an order of priority; and
(c) Shorelines of statewide significance may include critical areas as defined by RCW 36.70A.030(5), but that shorelines of statewide significance are not critical areas simply because they are shorelines of statewide significance.
(3) The legislature intends that critical areas within the jurisdiction of the shoreline management act shall be governed by the shoreline management act and that critical areas outside the jurisdiction of the shoreline management act shall be governed by the growth management act. The legislature further intends that the quality of information currently required by the shoreline management act to be applied to the protection of critical areas within shorelines of the state shall not be limited or changed by the provisions of the growth management act." [2003 c 321 § 1.]
Finding -- Intent -- 2002 c 230: "The legislature finds that the dollar threshold for what constitutes substantial development under the shoreline management act has not been changed since 1986. The legislature recognizes that the effects of inflation have brought in many activities under the jurisdiction of chapter 90.58 RCW that would have been exempted under its original provisions. It is the intent of the legislature to modify the current dollar threshold for what constitutes substantial development under the shoreline management act, and to have this threshold readjusted on a five-year basis." [2002 c 230 § 1.]
Severability -- Effective date -- 1995 c 255: See RCW 17.26.900 and 17.26.901.
Severability -- 1986 c 292: "If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [1986 c 292 § 5.]
Intent -- 1980 c 2; 1979 ex.s. c 84: "The legislature finds that high tides and hurricane force winds on February 13, 1979, caused conditions resulting in the catastrophic destruction of the Hood Canal bridge on state route 104, a state highway on the federal-aid system; and, as a consequence, the state of Washington has sustained a sudden and complete failure of a major segment of highway system with a disastrous impact on transportation services between the counties of Washington's Olympic peninsula and the remainder of the state. The governor has by proclamation found that these conditions constitute an emergency. To minimize the economic loss and hardship to residents of the Puget Sound and Olympic peninsula regions, it is the intent of 1979 ex.s. c 84 to authorize the department of transportation to undertake immediately all necessary actions to restore interim transportation services across Hood Canal and Puget Sound and upon the Kitsap and Olympic peninsulas and to design and reconstruct a permanent bridge at the site of the original Hood Canal bridge. The department of transportation is directed to proceed with such actions in an environmentally responsible manner that would meet the substantive objectives of the state environmental policy act and the shorelines management act, and shall consult with the department of ecology in the planning process. The exemptions from the state environmental policy act and the shorelines management act contained in RCW 43.21C.032 and 90.58.030 are intended to approve and ratify the timely actions of the department of transportation taken and to be taken to restore interim transportation services and to reconstruct a permanent Hood Canal bridge without procedural delays." [1980 c 2 § 1; 1979 ex.s. c 84 § 1.]
Program applicable to shorelines of the state.
The shoreline management program of this chapter shall apply to the shorelines of the state as defined in this chapter.
[1971 ex.s. c 286 § 4.]
Environmental excellence program agreements — Effect on chapter.
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any legal requirement under this chapter, including any standard, limitation, rule, or order is superseded and replaced in accordance with the terms and provisions of an environmental excellence program agreement, entered into under chapter 43.21K RCW.
[1997 c 381 § 28.]
Notes: Purpose -- 1997 c 381: See RCW 43.21K.005.
Program as cooperative between local government and state — Responsibilities differentiated.
This chapter establishes a cooperative program of shoreline management between local government and the state. Local government shall have the primary responsibility for initiating the planning required by this chapter and administering the regulatory program consistent with the policy and provisions of this chapter. The department shall act primarily in a supportive and review capacity with an emphasis on providing assistance to local government and on insuring compliance with the policy and provisions of this chapter.
[1995 c 347 § 303; 1971 ex.s. c 286 § 5.]
Notes: Finding -- Severability -- Part headings and table of contents not law -- 1995 c 347: See notes following RCW 36.70A.470.
Review and adoption of guidelines — Public hearings, notice of — Amendments.
(1) The department shall periodically review and adopt guidelines consistent with RCW 90.58.020, containing the elements specified in RCW 90.58.100 for:
(a) Development of master programs for regulation of the uses of shorelines; and
(b) Development of master programs for regulation of the uses of shorelines of statewide significance.
(2) Before adopting or amending guidelines under this section, the department shall provide an opportunity for public review and comment as follows:
(a) The department shall mail copies of the proposal to all cities, counties, and federally recognized Indian tribes, and to any other person who has requested a copy, and shall publish the proposed guidelines in the Washington state register. Comments shall be submitted in writing to the department within sixty days from the date the proposal has been published in the register.
(b) The department shall hold at least four public hearings on the proposal in different locations throughout the state to provide a reasonable opportunity for residents in all parts of the state to present statements and views on the proposed guidelines. Notice of the hearings shall be published at least once in each of the three weeks immediately preceding the hearing in one or more newspapers of general circulation in each county of the state. If an amendment to the guidelines addresses an issue limited to one geographic area, the number and location of hearings may be adjusted consistent with the intent of this subsection to assure all parties a reasonable opportunity to comment on the proposed amendment. The department shall accept written comments on the proposal during the sixty-day public comment period and for seven days after the final public hearing.
(c) At the conclusion of the public comment period, the department shall review the comments received and modify the proposal consistent with the provisions of this chapter. The proposal shall then be published for adoption pursuant to the provisions of chapter 34.05 RCW.
(3) The department may adopt amendments to the guidelines not more than once each year. Such amendments shall be limited to: (a) Addressing technical or procedural issues that result from the review and adoption of master programs under the guidelines; or (b) issues of guideline compliance with statutory provisions.
[2003 c 262 § 1; 1995 c 347 § 304; 1971 ex.s. c 286 § 6.]
Notes: Finding -- Severability -- Part headings and table of contents not law -- 1995 c 347: See notes following RCW 36.70A.470.
Application of guidelines and master programs to agricultural activities.
(1) The guidelines adopted by the department and master programs developed or amended by local governments according to RCW 90.58.080 shall not require modification of or limit agricultural activities occurring on agricultural lands. In jurisdictions where agricultural activities occur, master programs developed or amended after June 13, 2002, shall include provisions addressing new agricultural activities on land not meeting the definition of agricultural land, conversion of agricultural lands to other uses, and development not meeting the definition of agricultural activities. Nothing in this section limits or changes the terms of the *current exception to the definition of substantial development in RCW 90.58.030(3)(e)(iv). This section applies only to this chapter, and shall not affect any other authority of local governments.
(2) For the purposes of this section:
(a) "Agricultural activities" means agricultural uses and practices including, but not limited to: Producing, breeding, or increasing agricultural products; rotating and changing agricultural crops; allowing land used for agricultural activities to lie fallow in which it is plowed and tilled but left unseeded; allowing land used for agricultural activities to lie dormant as a result of adverse agricultural market conditions; allowing land used for agricultural activities to lie dormant because the land is enrolled in a local, state, or federal conservation program, or the land is subject to a conservation easement; conducting agricultural operations; maintaining, repairing, and replacing agricultural equipment; maintaining, repairing, and replacing agricultural facilities, provided that the replacement facility is no closer to the shoreline than the original facility; and maintaining agricultural lands under production or cultivation;
(b) "Agricultural products" includes but is not limited to horticultural, viticultural, floricultural, vegetable, fruit, berry, grain, hops, hay, straw, turf, sod, seed, and apiary products; feed or forage for livestock; Christmas trees; hybrid cottonwood and similar hardwood trees grown as crops and harvested within twenty years of planting; and livestock including both the animals themselves and animal products including but not limited to meat, upland finfish, poultry and poultry products, and dairy products;
(c) "Agricultural equipment" and "agricultural facilities" includes, but is not limited to: (i) The following used in agricultural operations: Equipment; machinery; constructed shelters, buildings, and ponds; fences; upland finfish rearing facilities; water diversion, withdrawal, conveyance, and use equipment and facilities including but not limited to pumps, pipes, tapes, canals, ditches, and drains; (ii) corridors and facilities for transporting personnel, livestock, and equipment to, from, and within agricultural lands; (iii) farm residences and associated equipment, lands, and facilities; and (iv) roadside stands and on-farm markets for marketing fruit or vegetables; and
(d) "Agricultural land" means those specific land areas on which agriculture activities are conducted.
(3) The department and local governments shall assure that local shoreline master programs use definitions consistent with the definitions in this section.
[2002 c 298 § 1.]
Notes: *Reviser's note: "Current" first appears in chapter 298, Laws of 2002.
Implementation -- 2002 c 298: "The provisions of this act do not become effective until the earlier of either January 1, 2004, or the date the department of ecology amends or updates chapter 173-16 or 173-26 WAC." [2002 c 298 § 2.]
Local governments to submit letters of intent — Department to act upon failure of local government.
(1) Local governments are directed with regard to shorelines of the state in their various jurisdictions to submit to the director of the department, within six months from June 1, 1971, letters stating that they propose to complete an inventory and develop master programs for these shorelines as provided for in RCW 90.58.080.
(2) If any local government fails to submit a letter as provided in subsection (1) of this section, or fails to adopt a master program for the shorelines of the state within its jurisdiction in accordance with the time schedule provided in this chapter, the department shall carry out the requirements of RCW 90.58.080 and adopt a master program for the shorelines of the state within the jurisdiction of the local government.
[1971 ex.s. c 286 § 7.]
Timetable for local governments to develop or amend master programs — Review of master programs — Grants.
(1) Local governments shall develop or amend a master program for regulation of uses of the shorelines of the state consistent with the required elements of the guidelines adopted by the department in accordance with the schedule established by this section.
(2)(a) Subject to the provisions of subsections (5) and (6) of this section, each local government subject to this chapter shall develop or amend its master program for the regulation of uses of shorelines within its jurisdiction according to the following schedule:
(i) On or before December 1, 2005, for the city of Port Townsend, the city of Bellingham, the city of Everett, Snohomish county, and Whatcom county;
(ii) On or before December 1, 2009, for King county and the cities within King county greater in population than ten thousand;
(iii) Except as provided by (a)(i) and (ii) of this subsection, on or before December 1, 2011, for Clallam, Clark, Jefferson, King, Kitsap, Pierce, Snohomish, Thurston, and Whatcom counties and the cities within those counties;
(iv) On or before December 1, 2012, for Cowlitz, Island, Lewis, Mason, San Juan, Skagit, and Skamania counties and the cities within those counties;
(v) On or before December 1, 2013, for Benton, Chelan, Douglas, Grant, Kittitas, Spokane, and Yakima counties and the cities within those counties; and
(vi) On or before December 1, 2014, for Adams, Asotin, Columbia, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grays Harbor, Klickitat, Lincoln, Okanogan, Pacific, Pend Oreille, Stevens, Wahkiakum, Walla Walla, and Whitman counties and the cities within those counties.
(b) Nothing in this subsection (2) shall preclude a local government from developing or amending its master program prior to the dates established by this subsection (2).
(3)(a) Following approval by the department of a new or amended master program, local governments required to develop or amend master programs on or before December 1, 2009, as provided by subsection (2)(a)(i) and (ii) of this section, shall be deemed to have complied with the schedule established by subsection (2)(a)(iii) of this section and shall not be required to complete master program amendments until seven years after the applicable dates established by subsection (2)(a)(iii) of this section. Any jurisdiction listed in subsection (2)(a)(i) of this section that has a new or amended master program approved by the department on or after March 1, 2002, but before July 27, 2003, shall not be required to complete master program amendments until seven years after the applicable date provided by subsection (2)(a)(iii) of this section.
(b) Following approval by the department of a new or amended master program, local governments choosing to develop or amend master programs on or before December 1, 2009, shall be deemed to have complied with the schedule established by subsection (2)(a)(iii) through (vi) of this section and shall not be required to complete master program amendments until seven years after the applicable dates established by subsection (2)(a)(iii) through (vi) of this section.
(4) Local governments shall conduct a review of their master programs at least once every seven years after the applicable dates established by subsection (2)(a)(iii) through (vi) of this section. Following the review required by this subsection (4), local governments shall, if necessary, revise their master programs. The purpose of the review is:
(a) To assure that the master program complies with applicable law and guidelines in effect at the time of the review; and
(b) To assure consistency of the master program with the local government's comprehensive plan and development regulations adopted under chapter 36.70A RCW, if applicable, and other local requirements.
(5) Local governments are encouraged to begin the process of developing or amending their master programs early and are eligible for grants from the department as provided by RCW 90.58.250, subject to available funding. Except for those local governments listed in subsection (2)(a)(i) and (ii) of this section, the deadline for completion of the new or amended master programs shall be two years after the date the grant is approved by the department. Subsequent master program review dates shall not be altered by the provisions of this subsection.
(6)(a) Grants to local governments for developing and amending master programs pursuant to the schedule established by this section shall be provided at least two years before the adoption dates specified in subsection (2) of this section. To the extent possible, the department shall allocate grants within the amount appropriated for such purposes to provide reasonable and adequate funding to local governments that have indicated their intent to develop or amend master programs during the biennium according to the schedule established by subsection (2) of this section. Any local government that applies for but does not receive funding to comply with the provisions of subsection (2) of this section may delay the development or amendment of its master program until the following biennium.
(b) Local governments with delayed compliance dates as provided in (a) of this subsection shall be the first priority for funding in subsequent biennia, and the development or amendment compliance deadline for those local governments shall be two years after the date of grant approval.
(c) Failure of the local government to apply in a timely manner for a master program development or amendment grant in accordance with the requirements of the department shall not be considered a delay resulting from the provisions of (a) of this subsection.
(7) Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, all local governments subject to the requirements of this chapter that have not developed or amended master programs on or after March 1, 2002, shall, no later than December 1, 2014, develop or amend their master programs to comply with guidelines adopted by the department after January 1, 2003.
[2003 c 262 § 2; 1995 c 347 § 305; 1974 ex.s. c 61 § 1; 1971 ex.s. c 286 § 8.]
Notes: Finding -- Severability -- Part headings and table of contents not law -- 1995 c 347: See notes following RCW 36.70A.470.
Approval of master program or segments or amendments — Procedure — Departmental alternatives when shorelines of statewide significance — Later adoption of master program supersedes departmental program.
(1) A master program, segment of a master program, or an amendment to a master program shall become effective when approved by the department. Within the time period provided in RCW 90.58.080, each local government shall have submitted a master program, either totally or by segments, for all shorelines of the state within its jurisdiction to the department for review and approval.
(2) Upon receipt of a proposed master program or amendment, the department shall:
(a) Provide notice to and opportunity for written comment by all interested parties of record as a part of the local government review process for the proposal and to all persons, groups, and agencies that have requested in writing notice of proposed master programs or amendments generally or for a specific area, subject matter, or issue. The comment period shall be at least thirty days, unless the department determines that the level of complexity or controversy involved supports a shorter period;
(b) In the department's discretion, conduct a public hearing during the thirty-day comment period in the jurisdiction proposing the master program or amendment;
(c) Within fifteen days after the close of public comment, request the local government to review the issues identified by the public, interested parties, groups, and agencies and provide a written response as to how the proposal addresses the identified issues;
(d) Within thirty days after receipt of the local government response pursuant to (c) of this subsection, make written findings and conclusions regarding the consistency of the proposal with the policy of RCW 90.58.020 and the applicable guidelines, provide a response to the issues identified in (c) of this subsection, and either approve the proposal as submitted, recommend specific changes necessary to make the proposal approvable, or deny approval of the proposal in those instances where no alteration of the proposal appears likely to be consistent with the policy of RCW 90.58.020 and the applicable guidelines. The written findings and conclusions shall be provided to the local government, all interested persons, parties, groups, and agencies of record on the proposal;
(e) If the department recommends changes to the proposed master program or amendment, within thirty days after the department mails the written findings and conclusions to the local government, the local government may:
(i) Agree to the proposed changes. The receipt by the department of the written notice of agreement constitutes final action by the department approving the amendment; or
(ii) Submit an alternative proposal. If, in the opinion of the department, the alternative is consistent with the purpose and intent of the changes originally submitted by the department and with this chapter it shall approve the changes and provide written notice to all recipients of the written findings and conclusions. If the department determines the proposal is not consistent with the purpose and intent of the changes proposed by the department, the department may resubmit the proposal for public and agency review pursuant to this section or reject the proposal.
(3) The department shall approve the segment of a master program relating to shorelines unless it determines that the submitted segments are not consistent with the policy of RCW 90.58.020 and the applicable guidelines.
(4) The department shall approve the segment of a master program relating to critical areas as defined by RCW 36.70A.030(5) provided the master program segment is consistent with RCW 90.58.020 and applicable shoreline guidelines, and if the segment provides a level of protection of critical areas at least equal to that provided by the local government's critical areas ordinances adopted and thereafter amended pursuant to RCW 36.70A.060(2).
(5) The department shall approve those segments of the master program relating to shorelines of statewide significance only after determining the program provides the optimum implementation of the policy of this chapter to satisfy the statewide interest. If the department does not approve a segment of a local government master program relating to a shoreline of statewide significance, the department may develop and by rule adopt an alternative to the local government's proposal. (continued)