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The 2012 legislative session included three adopted bills amending the
Shoreline Management Act (SMA,
These amendments affect procedures for both local governments and Ecology. EHB 2814 took effect March 23, 2012. EHB 2671 and 2469 took effect June 7, 2012.
Local governments should review the changes carefully for implications to shoreline planning and permitting work.
Summary table of changes to Shoreline Management Act (pdf)
New Shoreline permitting and permit appeal provisions are established for the replacement of the floating bridge and landings of the SR 520 Evergreen Point Bridge. The appeal provisions apply retroactively to any appeals filed after January 1, 2012. The provisions of the bill expire June 30, 2014.
Ecology requested this legislation to clarify procedures for appealing final approval of a Shoreline Master Program or SMP amendment. The bill amends RCW 90.58.190 to ensure parallel provisions in the two main paths for filing appeals of SMPs: Appeals within “fully planning” cities and counties go to the Growth Management Hearings Board, while appeals in other cities and counties go to the Shoreline Hearings Board.
One substantive change is made by the bill. The legal test for adequacy of an SMP is clarified. The statute now uses “compliance” as the legal test for all SMP appeals. The bill removes the unique test for Shorelines of Statewide Significance of being “consistent” with the statute.
Many boatyards will be required to make stormwater treatment improvements in coming years, to meet National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit requirements. This legislation makes these required improvements exempt from obtaining a Shoreline permit. The improvements will need to comply with the substantive requirements of the city or county Shoreline Master Program. This will be accomplished by Ecology staff review of the construction plans which are submitted to the agency as part of NPDES compliance.
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