State process for approving/amending shoreline master programs.
Review and approval of master programs and amendments by the department shall follow the procedures set forth below:
(1) The department shall review the submitted master program or amendment for compliance with WAC 173-26-100
. The department shall notify the local government in writing when it determines that a complete submittal has been received. If the submittal is determined to be incomplete, the department will identify the deficiencies and so notify the local government in writing. The review process will not commence until the department determines the submittal is complete.
(2) The department shall provide reasonable notice and opportunity for written comment to all parties of record who expressed interest regarding the local government proposal and to all persons, groups, agencies, and tribes that have requested in writing notice of proposed master programs or amendments generally or for a specific subject matter. The comment period shall be at least thirty days, unless the department determines that a lack of complexity or controversy surrounding the proposal supports a shorter period.
(3) For master program or amendment proposals involving local governments planning under chapter 36.70A
RCW, the department shall provide notice to the department of community, trade, and economic development of its intent to commence formal review of the local government proposal.
(4) At the department's discretion, it may conduct a public hearing during the comment period in the jurisdiction proposing the master program or amendment.
(5) If the department conducts a hearing pursuant to subsection (4) of this section, it shall publish notice of the hearing in at least one newspaper of general circulation in the area affected by the master program. The public notice shall include:
(a) A description of the proposed master program or amendment;
(b) Reference to the authority under which the action is proposed;
(c) The dates, times, and locations of the public hearing, and the manner in which interested persons may obtain copies of the proposal and present their views.
For master program or amendment proposals involving adoption by rule, the notice of the hearing 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 the county in which the hearing is to be held.
(6) Within fifteen days after the close of the department's public comment period, the department shall request of the local government submitting the proposal a review of the issues if any, identified by the public, interested parties, groups, agencies, and tribes, and a written response as to how the proposal addresses the identified issues consistent with the policy of RCW 90.58.020
and the applicable guidelines. Local government shall submit its response to the department within forty-five days of the date of the department's letter requesting a response. If no response is received by the department within the forty-five-day period, the department may proceed with action on the proposal according to subsection (7) of this section. Within the forty-five-day period, the local government may request in writing additional time to prepare a response.
(7) Within thirty days after receipt of the local government written response pursuant to subsection (6) of this section, the department shall 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 subsection (6) of this section and either approve the proposal as submitted, recommend specific changes necessary to make the proposal consistent with chapter 90.58
RCW policy and its applicable guidelines, or deny 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 parties, tribes, and agencies of record on the proposal.
In reaching its determination of consistency with the policy of RCW 90.58.020
and the applicable guidelines, the department shall approve those parts of a master program relating to shorelines unless it determines that the submitted parts are not consistent with the policy of RCW 90.58.020
and the applicable guidelines. The department shall approve those parts of a master program relating to shorelines of statewide significance only after determining the program provides for optimum implementation of the statewide interest as set forth in the policy of RCW 90.58.020
and the applicable guidelines.
(a) In cases where the proposal is approved as submitted, the effective date of the approved master program or amendment shall be the date of the department's letter to local government approving the submitted master program or amendments.
(b) If the department recommends changes to the proposal, within thirty days after the department mails the written findings and conclusions to the local government pursuant to this subsection (7), the local government may:
(i) Agree to the proposed changes. Receipt by the department of the written notice of agreement from the local government shall constitute final action by the department approving the revised submittal. Written notice of the local government acceptance shall be provided by the department to all parties of record. In such cases, the effective date of the approved master program or amendment is the date the department receives from local government the written notice of agreement; 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 proposed by the department in this subsection (7) and with the policy of RCW 90.58.020
and the applicable guidelines, it shall approve the alternative changes and provide written notice to all parties of record. In such cases, the effective date of the approved master program or amendments is the date of the department's letter to local government approving the alternative proposal.
If the department determines the alternative proposal is not consistent with the purpose and intent of the changes proposed by the department, the department may either deny the alternative proposal or at the request of local government start anew with the review and approval process beginning at WAC 173-26-120.
(8) A master program or amendment thereto takes effect when and in such form as it is approved or adopted by rule by the department except when appealed to the shorelines board as provided for in RCW 90.58.190
(4) for local governments not planning under chapter 36.70A
RCW. The department's approved document of record, filed at the department, constitutes the official master program.
(9) For local governments planning under chapter 36.70A
RCW, after final action by the department on a local government's shoreline master program or amendment the local government shall (pursuant to RCW 90.58.090
) promptly publish a notice that the department has taken final action on the master program or amendment. For purposes of this section, the date of publication for the master program adoption or amendment shall be the date on which the local government publishes the notice that the department has taken final action on the master program or amendment.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 90.58.140
(3) and [90.58].200. WSR 96-20-075 (Order 95-17), § 173-26-120, filed 9/30/96, effective 10/31/96.]