News Flash

Planning & Public Works

Posted on: October 27, 2021

SEPA Review Now Required for Some Projects

SEPA Review Now Required for Some Projects


After consultation with Ecology and legal counsel, we will no longer be interpreting section WAC 197-11-800(6)(d) to categorically exempt the following projects:

The following actions are not exempt and require SEPA review:

  • Preliminary plats of 20 lots or less
  • Large lots of 20 lots or less
  • Short plats involving wetlands or lands covered by water

We will reach out to applicants with existing projects that may be impacted by this interpretation to help them navigate this change.

WAC 197-11-756 Lands covered by water.

 (1) "Lands covered by water" means lands underlying the water areas of the state below the ordinary high water mark, including salt waters, tidal waters, estuarine waters, natural water courses, lakes, ponds, artificially impounded waters, and wetlands. As specified in Part Nine certain categorical exemptions do not apply when a portion or all of a project or proposal is undertaken on lands covered by water.

 (2) Wetlands - Wetlands are defined as areas that are inundated or saturated by surface water or groundwater 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 include those artificial wetlands intentionally created from nonwetland areas created to mitigate conversion of wetlands. 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.

 (3) "Lands covered by water" does not include adjacent lands and designated buffers above the ordinary high water mark.

If you have a question on an existing application, you can reach out to your assigned review planner. For general questions, you can contact the Development Center at [email protected] or by phone at (253) 798-3739.

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Planning & Public Works

No building inspections on May 24

Posted on: May 9, 2022

Please Continue to Use Online Services

Posted on: January 21, 2022

Annual Fee Changes Coming in 2022

Posted on: December 17, 2021

New septic-to-sewer conversion process

Posted on: November 10, 2021

New application requirement coming Oct. 1

Posted on: September 28, 2021

Apply for a historic preservation grant

Posted on: September 3, 2021

Recording fees increase on July 25

Posted on: July 16, 2021

Inspection Safety Reminder

Posted on: May 3, 2021

Development Center Operations Update

Posted on: March 23, 2021

Apply for a historic preservation grant

Posted on: November 24, 2020

Critical Area Sign-Off Improvements

Posted on: November 19, 2019

October News - Community Plan Updates

Posted on: October 18, 2019

Code enforcement portal improvements

Posted on: September 26, 2019

Our permit process just got easier

Posted on: September 24, 2019

Recording Fees Increase in July 2019

Posted on: July 10, 2019