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14.260.070 Critical Area Reports for Wetlands.
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A. All applications for new development or redevelopment that propose new structures or expand the footprint of existing structures may be required to provide, at a minimum as determined by the Planning Director, a reconnaissance letter prepared by a qualified wetland professional, stating there are no wetlands on the site or on adjacent parcels. The reconnaissance letter shall:

1. Be prepared by a qualified wetland professional;

2. Include a description of the field activity the qualified wetland professional performed when visiting the site;

3. Include a statement as to the likelihood of a wetland located on the site or near enough to be impacted by the proposed development and the basis for that statement; and

4. If there is uncertainty in the conclusion whether there is a likelihood of a wetland being on the site or within one hundred fifty (150) feet of the site then a full written wetland report shall be required.

B. Minimum Standards for Critical Area Report for Wetlands. The critical area wetland report shall be written. The report and the accompanying plan sheets shall contain the following information:

1. The written report shall, at a minimum, include:

a. All of the requirements stated in SMC 14.255.060.

b. Documentation of any fieldwork performed on the site, including but not limited to field data sheets for delineations, rating system forms, baseline hydrologic data, and photographs showing typical conditions in the wetlands and buffer areas.

c. A description of the methodologies used to conduct the wetland delineations, wetland ratings, or impact analyses, including references.

d. Identification and characterization of all critical areas, wetlands, water bodies, shorelines, floodplains, and buffers on or adjacent to the proposed project area. For areas off site of the project site, estimate conditions within three hundred (300) feet of the project boundaries using the best available information.

e. For each wetland identified on site and within one hundred fifty (150) feet of the project boundary, provide all of the following (to the extent possible recognizing the limitations created if access to an off-site wetland is restricted):

i. The wetland rating, including a description of and score for each function;

ii. Required standard buffers pursuant to SMC 14.260.060(B);

iii. Hydrogeomorphic classification;

iv. Wetland acreage based on a professional survey from the field delineation (acreages for on-site portion or estimate of entire wetland area including off-site portions);

v. Cowardin classification of vegetation communities;

vi. Observed habitat elements;

vii. Soil conditions based on site assessment and/or soil survey information; and

viii. To the extent possible, hydrologic information such as location and condition of inlets/outlets (if they can be legally accessed), estimated water depths within the wetland, and estimated hydroperiod patterns based on visual cues.

f. Provide acreage estimates, classifications, and ratings based on entire wetland complexes, not only the portion present on the proposed project site.

g. A description of the proposed actions, including an estimation of acreages of impacts to wetlands and buffers based on the field delineation and survey and an analysis of site development alternatives.

h. A detailed description of how mitigation sequencing, pursuant to SMC 14.260.080(A), has been applied to avoid, minimize, and mitigate impacts to critical areas.

i. A discussion of measures, including avoidance, minimization, and compensation, proposed to preserve existing wetlands and restore any wetlands that were degraded prior to the current proposed land use activity.

j. An evaluation of the functions of the wetland and its buffer. Include references for the method used and data sheets.

2. The accompanying site plan sheet(s) for the project shall, at a minimum, include:

a. Maps (to scale) depicting delineated and surveyed wetland and required buffers on site, including buffers for off-site critical areas that extend onto the project site; the development proposal; other critical areas; grading and clearing limits; and areas of proposed impacts to wetlands and/or buffers (include square footage estimates).

b. A depiction of the proposed stormwater management facilities and outlets (to scale) for the development, including estimated areas of intrusion into the buffers of any critical areas. The written report shall contain a discussion of the potential impacts to the wetland(s) associated with anticipated hydroperiod alterations from the project.

c. If mitigation is being proposed, a mitigation and planting plan with plant specifications. (Ord. 2368, 2019)

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