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File #: 20-0798    Version: 1
Type: information Status: Filed
File created: 10/6/2020 In control: Land Use & Environment Committee
Agenda date: 10/22/2020 Final action: 10/22/2020
Title: Shoreline Master Program Periodic Review - Status Update
Attachments: 1. SMP Webpage 10062020, 2. Gap Analysis


Shoreline Master Program Periodic Review - Status Update


Recommended Action

Committee Recommendation:

Not referred to a committee.


City Manager Recommendation:

Receive a briefing on the Periodic Review of the Shoreline Master Program. Information only. No action requested.




Whether to receive a briefing on the Periodic Review of the Shoreline Master Program (SMP), as required by law every 8 years.


Staff Contact:

Joyce Phillips, Senior Planner, Community Planning and Development, 360.570.3722



Joyce Phillips, Senior Planner, Community Planning and Development


Background and Analysis:

Shoreline Master Programs (SMPs) are local land use policies and regulations that guide development and the use of most shorelines. SMPs apply to both public and private uses for lakes, streams, associated wetlands, and marine shorelines. They protect natural resources for future generations, provide for public access to public waters and shores, and plan for water-dependent uses.  SMPs must be consistent with the Shoreline Management Act (RCW 90.58) and must be approved by the Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology).


SMPs must be reviewed and, if necessary, updated to ensure they remain compliant with state laws and local comprehensive plans.  This review must be completed every eight (8) years and is known as the “Periodic Review”.  Olympia’s SMP Periodic Review must be completed no later than June 30, 2021.


Ecology provides technical assistance, guidance documents, and grant funding for this work.  Ecology’s grant contract requires completion of five tasks, designed to ensure local governments complete the required Periodic Review. The primary task is to review the SMP and draft revisions, if needed.  Ecology provides a checklist to conduct the review, which includes three main parts:


a.                     Review amendments to chapter 90.58 RCW and Ecology rules that have occurred since the Shoreline Master Program was last amended. Determine if local amendments are needed to maintain compliance.


b.                     Review any changes to the comprehensive plan and development regulations to determine if the SMP policies and regulations remain consistent. Document the consistency analysis to support proposed changes to the SMP or note that Findings of Adequacy would be appropriate.


c.                     Conduct additional analysis if deemed necessary to address changing local circumstances, new information, or improved data.


The City used Ecology’s checklist and determined that some changes are needed.  This analysis was reviewed by Ecology for their input.  The outcome of that review, known as the Gap Analysis, then became the minimum scope of work for the update.


The draft amendments will be available for public review in October.  Once issued, staff will work with the consulting team to update the public participation plan to focus more on online participation opportunities. The existing public participation plan was developed prior to the Covid-19 outbreak and we will update it to provide for meaningful input opportunities while limiting the need for people to gather in-person.


Neighborhood/Community Interests (if known):

Shoreline issues are of interest to our community.  Active engagement and comments are anticipated as we get farther along in the process.  A public participation plan was developed, and the City’s Shoreline Master Program webpage has been updated to reflect this work.


In mid-August the City issued an E-Newsletter to the Planning and Development listserv and sent an email to parties of record to inform people about the Periodic Review process, that the Gap Analysis is available for review and comment, and to let people know how to get involved in the process.  Once the public draft of the revisions is available, additional outreach will be provided.



Information only, no action required.


Financial Impact:

The City entered into a contract with the Washington State Department of Ecology for $28,000 in grant funding to complete the Periodic Review.  The Community Planning and Development Department hired The Watershed Company for professional services to conduct the review, draft required updates, and to assist in the process.



Project webpage

Gap Analysis