Community Development

SMP Formal Review Process

As the formal public review process for the Shoreline Master Program (SMP) Comprehensive Update continues, iterative draft versions of a new SMP are being considered by the public, the Planning Commission, Board of County Commissioners and WA Department of Ecology.  See below for highlights and materials from each step along the way.


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621 Sheridan Street
Port Townsend,
WA 98368

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Note: Click on these table of contents items to skip to the section below.

Page last updated: 2-3-2011

New Items

State Approval

On January 26, 2011, the Washington Department of Ecology announced their conditional approval of the Locally Approved SMP pending some required changes.  Learn more about the status of the state review process on the state website and the State Review & Approval page.

FAQ Handout

Jefferson County and WA Department of Ecology provide frequently asked question (FAQ) handouts and other resources to help educate and engage the public.  Learn more on the State Review & Approval page.

Schedule Extension and Revised SMP

After the Board's thorough and detailed review of the Planning Commission proposal, they directed staff to make numerous revisions.  The extra time spent in deliberations leads the Board to consider requesting another WA Dept. of Ecology grant contract timeline extension to December 31.  The 10-22-09 DRAFT Locally Approved SMP document was provided to the Board for final review before they take action by resolution, anticipated for early November.  A revised schedule was approved by the Board on 10/26/09, who also directed staff to complete the final edits requested, prepare a resolution for local approval, and send a letter to Ecology requesting the timeline extension.  Learn more on the Locally Approved SMP page.

The County will submit the Locally Approved SMP to Ecology for the final review and adoption process.  Two documents help describe this process:

BoCC Workshop on Sept. 2

The Board of County Commissioners hosted a question & answer workshop with Department of Community Development staff, the Planning Commission, and the public at 7:00 pm on Wednesday, September 2, 2009 at the Superior Courtroom, County Courthouse, 1820 Jefferson St., Port Townsend.  The intent was to learn more about the Planning Commission Final Draft SMP Recommendation and DCD Staff Recommendation to encourage informed public comment and decision-making.

DCD Staff Recommendation

Department of Community Development Staff has reviewed the Planning Commission Final Draft SMP Recommendation and provided feedback to the Board of County Commissioners regarding recommended revisions to improve document structure, organization, readability and compliance with legal requirements.  Learn more and view the document at the DCD Staff Recommendation page.

Public Comment Period Open 'til September 8

The Board of County Commissioners is accepting public comment on the Planning Commission Final Draft SMP Recommendation August 19 - September 8.  Learn more on the PC Final Draft page.

Planning Commission Final Draft SMP

The Planning Commission Final Draft SMP is available for review starting August 3, 2009 with another public comment period set for August 19 to September 8, 2009.  The Board of County Commissioners will hold a public hearing on September 8, 2009.  The document is posted online with hard copies available at Department of Community Development, County Library in Hadlock, and Clallam Library in Forks. Learn more on the PC Final Draft page.  Comments on this document are available below under Public Comments.

Planning Commission Revised Draft SMP

The Planning Commission Revised Draft SMP was available for review and public comment June 3 - 17, 2009.  Learn more on the PC Revised Draft page.  Comments on this document are available below under Public Comments.

Newly Revised SMP Schedule through Oct. 30, 2009

At the 5/6/09 Planning Commission (PC) meeting, the group did not complete initial deliberations as scheduled and indicated the need for additional review time.  On the same date, Ecology issued a letter to the Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) approving the requested October 30 contract timeline extension.

On 5/11/09 PC Chair Peter Downey and DCD staff brought a proposed schedule to the BoCC that accommodates the PC's request for an extra two weeks and the extended grant contract deadline of October 30.  The Board took action to approve a two-week review schedule extension for the Planning Commission. 

Dates for deliberation meetings, document releases, comment periods, and public hearings changed.  Key dates include:

  • June 3 - PC Revised Draft SMP release and start of open public comment period (previously scheduled for May 20)
  • June 17 - PC public hearing and close of public comment period (previously scheduled for June 3)
  • July 15 - PC completes their "Final Draft SMP" recommendation (previously scheduled for June 30)

View the Ecology approval letter, and BoCC memo to the PC.  See the Review & Revision diagram for a project overview.  See the Meeting Materials & Highlights section below to track Pending and Past meetings.

Board Seeks More Time from State

In light of the Planning Commission timeline extension, the Board of County Commissioners has requested a contract deadline extension to October 30, 2009.  Currently the grant agreement requires submitted of a locally-approved SMP to the WA Department of Ecology by June 30.

Timeline Extension Approved for PC

On 3/16/09 the Board of County Commissioners approved the 2/18/09 Planning Commission (PC) request for more time to prepare a Final Draft SMP recommendation by June 30, 2009.  View their schedule and read details in the Meeting Materials section below.

 

Meeting Materials & Highlights

A Preliminary Draft SMP (PDSMP) staff proposal for Comprehensive Plan and Unified Development Code amendments is undergoing formal public review.  The PDSMP was published, released to the public and introduced at a joint workshop with the Planning Commission (PC) and the Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) on December 3, 2008. 

The PC will review the PDSMP and prepare a Final Draft SMP recommendation to the BoCC for their approval and submittal for State Dept. of Ecology approval.

See the SMP Review & Revision diagram (revised May '09) for the PC - BoCC - Ecology process and timeline. 

PC and BoCC meeting agendas and minutes are posted on each group's respective webpage (see linked text above).  Additional projects/topics discussed by either group on the dates below are covered elsewhere on the County webpage.  See the DCD Issue Links list of projects/topics or the Jefferson County Homepage.

Pending Meetings-

NOTE:  The below dates are anticipated, but subject to change.  Dates are firm once legally noticed.  See the 10/26/09 revised SMP Schedule.

11/9 or 11/16/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

  • Agenda anticipated to include formal action by resolution to locally-approve the SMP for submittal to WA Dept. of Ecology for final review and adoption.

SMP project materials and highlights from the PC and BoCC review are posted below:

Past Meetings -

10/26/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

10/19/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

10/1/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

9/28/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

  • Board deliberated on the SMP

9/23/09 BoCC Special Meeting

  • Board deliberated on the SMP

9/21/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

  • Board deliberated on the SMP

9/14/09 BoCC Regular Meeting

9/8/09 BoCC Special Meeting - 6:00pm at Superior Court

9/2/09 BoCC Special Meeting - 7:00 pm at Superior Court

8/24/09 Board of County Commissioners Regular Meeting

  • Staff presented the DCD Staff Recommendation for the SMP Update (MLA08-00475) and confirmed the project schedule to include a question and answer workshop on 9/2 and the public hearing on 9/8.  It was clarified that the public comment period is on the Planning Commission Final Draft SMP Recommendation but the public may reference the DCD Staff Recommendation or any other source of information in providing comments on the PC proposal.  The DCD Director provided the Board a copy of the memo to staff he prepared regarding his perspective on the top 8 significant areas of controversy.

8/17/09 Board of County Commissioners Regular Meeting

  • Staff attended the afternoon County Administrator Briefing session to provide a status report on the pending DCD Staff Recommendation.

8/3/09 Board of County Commissioners Regular Meeting

  • Submittal of the Planning Commission Final Draft SMP Recommendation with Findings and Conclusions was accepted by the Board, who then approved publication of a legal notice to open public comment period on August 19.

7/15/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

7/8/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

7/1/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

6/17/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • PC conducted a public hearing on the PC Revised Draft SMP, and closed the formal comment period at 9:15pm.  The Superior Court room was full to capacity and 54 citizens gave oral testimony.  About 30 written comment letters were also submitted, many of which are duplicates of those submitted previously.  Written comments are posted online for reveiw.

6/3/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

5/20/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • B. Miller Allowed Use Table suggested edits
  • P. Farmer Vegetation comments
  • GMA - SMA Briefing handout
  • PC deliberated Shoreline Environment Designations, agreeing to some revisions by consensus.  No formal action was taken.
  • PC deliberated Public Access and Vegetation, agreeing to some revisions by consensus.  No formal action was taken.
  • PC deliberated additional assorted topics including feeder bluff definition, mining, forest practices, and aquaculture. 
  • PC Completed deliberations on PDSMP line-in/line-out revisions and took action to direct the Chair to forward the PC Revised Draft SMP to staff for public release.

5/13/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

  • T. Brotherton suggestions on SEDs:
  • P. Farmer submittal on No Net Loss
  • PC continued discussion of PDSMP Shoreline Environment Designations (SEDs), making minor text changes to Natural and Conservancy by consensus. No formal action was taken.
  • PC deliberated Public Access, making minor text changes to goals and regulations by consensus.  No formal action was taken.
  • PC deliberated Vegetation Conservation, making some text changes by consensus.  No formal action was taken.
  • PC deliberated additional topics including feeder bluffs, mining, forest practices and aquaculture.  No changes were made.

5/11/09 Board of County Commissioners Meeting

  • Board took action to approve PC request for 2-week extension for preparing PC Final Draft SMP recommendation.  See description above under New Items.

5/6/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • T. Brotherton comments on SEDs:
  • T. Giske comments on:
  • PC continued deliberating on Shoreline Environment Designations (SEDs). 
    • The group passed a motion to propose revising the SED from Conservancy to Shoreline Residential along a section of Reach A, from a point south of McDonald Creek to a point north of Triton Cove State Park stating the area does not meet the criteria for Conservancy.
    • The group failed a motion to revise the SED from Conservancy to Shoreline Residential in Reach CC along the northwest cove of Ludlow Bay.
  • The PC will continue discussions of SEDs on May 13.
  • PC did not deliberate on Public Access, Vegetation, or any other final deliberations on PDSMP line-in/line-out revisions.  The group indicated their interest to discuss these issues on May 13.
  • PC did not complete final deliberations on proposed line-in/line-out revisions to the PDSMP.  The group indicated their interest in requesting additional review time from the BoCC.  Chair Downey will submit the request to the Board on 5/11/09.

4/29/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

4/22/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

  • T. Brotherton comments on:
  • B.  Miller comments on:
  • P. Farmer comments on Non-conforming Development and Definitions
  • PC deliberated on the Common Line Setback and took action to propose revising the PDSMP language with Bill Miller's suggested text along with a change to using a mathematical average rather than a drawn line, and using a 200' separation limit rather than 50'.  Other text revisions were proposed by consensus.
  • PC deliberated on Non-conforming Development and took action to propose revising the PDSMP language to eliminate the 75% threshold and the differentiation between rebuilding single family residential (SFR) and non-SFR, not allow rebuilding in geo-hazard areas, allow administrative timeline extension for rebuilding, and ensure rebuild is compatible w/ surrounding uses/development and causes no adverse impacts.  They also took action to propose revising the PDSMP language to eliminate the criteria to allow changing a non-conforming use.  Other text revisions were proposed by consensus.
  • PC deliberated Shore Armoring/Stabilization and proposed text changes by consensus but mainly concluded the section was adequate as written.
  • PC began deliberating Definitions and proposed text revisions by consensus.  This discussion will continue at the next meeting.

4/15/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • Board of Equalization appeal form
  • T. Brotherton comments on:
  • Non-conforming Lots & Structures Worksheet handout (also shown as a slideshow)
  • PC continued deliberations on Shoreline Setbacks  & Height, and the Common Line Setback (CLS) provision.  A motion to rename the CLS section and add proposed language failed.  This discussion will continue at the next meeting for revised wording.
  • PC deliberated Article 8.6 Mining and took action to propose keeping policy #4 rather than adding suggested language.  By consensus, the group agreed to propose prohibiting all mining activities in stream/river channels and other suggested language revisions.
  • Staff presented a slideshow/worksheet of graphic examples to illustrate what is proposed in PDSMP Articles 6 and 10 regarding development on non-conforming lots, and rebuilding & expanding non-conforming structures (view by clicking linked text above).
  • PC deliberated Article 8.8 Residential and agreed by consensus to include much of the suggested language revisions.
  • PC began deliberating Article 10.6 Non-conforming Development. This discussion will continue at the next meeting.

4/8/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

4/1/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • T. Brotherton suggested edits
  • T. Giske suggested edits
  • P. Farmer buffer research
  • PC heard from County Assessor the potential effect of the PDSMP on property values and taxation is that some parcels may see significant changes in value, while others may see none.  Because lowered assessed values do not mean lower County tax revenue, there could be a shift between who pays how much, but it will not be a huge shift overall.  The Assessor was unaware of any examples where the new critical areas buffers had reduced property value or caused a lot to become unbuildable.  He clarified that a bigger setback does not mean a property has no value and that eliminating an existing prohibition on building would increase a property's value. He agreed to contact San Juan County's Assessor about the property value/tax effects of their 250' buffers.
  • PC deliberated on Critical Areas/Buffers and passed a motion to propose reducing the standard buffer along Shoreline Residential and High Intensity designated marine shorelines to 50', while maintaining a 150' buffer along Natural and Conservancy designated marine shorelines.  Other proposed text revisions were made by consensus but no other formal action was taken.

3/25/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

  • T. Brotherton handout on critical areas/buffers
  • PC Vice Chair Bill Miller led the meeting.  PC completed discussion on Industrial/Port Development and began deliberating Critical Areas/Buffers.  Proposed text revisions were made by consensus but no formal action was taken.

3/18/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

3/16/09 Board of County Commissioners Meeting

  • BoCC memo to PC
  • BoCC letter to Ecology
  • Highlights: The BoCC took action to approve the PC timeline extension request.  PC must complete their recommendation to the BoCC by June 30, include additional opportunity for public review of proposed revisions and hold another formal comment period with a public hearing.  The County is also requesting a contract timeline extension to October 30 from WA Department of Ecology to accommodate the extended SMP review process.

3/11/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

3/4/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • T. Brotherton handout on Policies
  • Ecology handout on Shoreline Management Act
  • Highlights:  PC finished deliberations on PDSMP Boating Facilities.  Proposed text revisions were made by consensus but no formal action was taken.  PC discussed their proposed PDSMP review process & schedule.  The BoCC is anticipated to take action on the PC timeline extension request on 3/16/09.  The PC will discuss Aquaculture at their next meeting.

 2/25/09 Planning Commission Special Meeting

  • No SMP materials were distributed
  • Highlights:  PC finished deliberations on PDSMP Beach Access Structures and began deliberations on Boating Facilities.  Proposed text revisions were made by consensus but no formal action was taken.  Next meeting will address their PDSMP Review Process and Schedule, continue Boating Facilities deliberations, and begin deliberating Aquaculture if time allows.

2/23/09 Board of County Commissioners Briefing

  • 2/18/09 PC letter of request for timeline extension
  • Highlights:  DCD staff and consultants briefed the BoCC on the status of the PDSMP, responded to key public concerns, and presented the PC request letter for a timeline extension.  The Board delayed taking action until staff and the County Administrator prepare an analysis of schedule and budget implications.  This is anticipated to occur in the next few weeks.

2/18/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

2/4/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

1/21/09 Planning Commission Public Hearing

  • No SMP materials were distributed
  • Highlights:  Planning Commission heard oral testimony from 44 members of the public.  Planning Commission Chair said to anticipate recommended revisions to the PDSMP and that additional public comment opportunities would be provided.

1/7/09 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • "Side-by-side" Review handout - Key Similarities and Differences between Existing SMP & Proposed PDSMP Regulations
    • 1989 SMP Reference Numbering - The 'side-by-side' document above references section numbers of the current 1989 SMP.  This numbering chart helps readers convert the section number to the corresponding code number.  This was not distributed at the PC meeting on 1/7 but is provided as a complement.
  • Highlights:  PC considered options for committee approach to reviewing the PDSMP and formulating a recommendation to BoCC.  As deliberations may not precede the close of public comment, PC Chair instructed PC members to arrive at the 2/4/09 meeting with their concerns & ideas.

12/17/08 Planning Commission Regular Meeting

  • Canceled due to inclement weather

12/3/08 Joint PC & BoCC Workshop

Public Comments

While informal public comments were gathered prior to the formal public review process, submittal of the PDSMP proposal to Planning Commission started an initial open public comment period (12/3/08 - 1/30/09). 

A second formal public comment period was held 6/3-17/09 for the PC Revised Draft SMP.  There will be additional comment periods as the proposal is reviewed/revised by Board of County Commissioners, and WA Department of Ecology.  Public comments are included in the public record for the SMP Update Project. 

View a topic-based summary of comments received during the 12/3/08 to 1/30/09 comment period here.

View individual comments received below via the  County's Laserfiche Weblink.

NOTE:  New documents are added frequently - check back often to see new materials (Webpage date does not reflect Public Record date).

Laserfiche Viewing Instructions:

  1. Open the Laserfiche WebLink

  2. Click on "Permits"

  3. Click on "Long Range Planning"

  4. Click on "SMP"

  5. Click on "SMP Public Comments"

  6. First view the Index for a list of items contained in the Record of Public Comments

    1. Note: the Index includes GMA File, GMA #, Title, Date, and Description for each item in the Record;

    2. Note:  Index files may not appear on page 1 of the record due to automatic alphabetizing that puts numbers before letters.  Try selecting "Show all" from the "Results per Page" drop down menu.

    3. Note:  Formal public comments received on the Preliminary Draft SMP during the initial 12/3/08 to 1/30/09 comment period are numbered 14 - 407; Informal public comments received 1/30/09 - 6/2/09 are numbered 408 - 499; Formal public comments received on the Planning Commission Revised Draft SMP during the 6/3/09 - 6/17/09 comment period are numbered 500 and up.

  7. Make note of the GMA # assigned to the item you want to view

  8. Then click "Back" to view the entire Record; and

  9. Select individual items for viewing

Return to the Shoreline Update page

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