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WAC 365-196-850

Impact fees.

(1) Counties and cities planning under the act are authorized to impose impact fees on development activities as part of public facilities financing. However, the financing for system improvements to serve new development must provide a balance between impact fees and other sources of public funds and cannot rely solely on impact fees.
(2) The decision to use impact fees should be specifically implemented through development regulations. The regulations should call for a specific finding on all three of the following limitations whenever an impact fee is imposed. The impact fees:
(a) Must only be imposed for system improvements that are reasonably related to the new development. "System improvements" (in contrast to "project improvements") are public facilities included in the capital facilities plan that are designed to provide service to service areas within the community at large;
(b) Must not exceed a proportionate share of the costs of system improvements that are reasonably related to the new development; and
(c) Must be used for system improvements that will reasonably benefit the new development.
(3) Impact fees may be collected and spent only for the following capital facilities owned or operated by government entities:
(a) Public streets and roads;
(b) Publicly owned parks;
(c) Open space and recreation facilities;
(d) School facilities; and
(e) Fire protection facilities.
(4) Capital facilities for which impact fees will be imposed must have been addressed in a capital facilities plan element which identifies:
(a) Deficiencies in public facilities serving existing development and the means by which existing deficiencies will be eliminated within a reasonable period of time;
(b) Additional demands placed on existing public facilities by new development; and
(c) Additional public facility improvements required to serve new development.
(5) The local ordinance by which impact fees are imposed must conform to the provisions of RCW 82.02.060. The department recommends that jurisdictions include the authorized exemption for low-income housing.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 36.70A.050 and 36.70A.190. WSR 17-20-100, § 365-196-850, filed 10/4/17, effective 11/4/17; WSR 10-03-085, § 365-196-850, filed 1/19/10, effective 2/19/10.]
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