(1) The department of commerce shall provide management services for the growth management planning and environmental review fund created by RCW 36.70A.490
. The department shall establish procedures for fund management. The department shall encourage participation in the grant or loan program by other public agencies. The department shall develop the grant or loan criteria, monitor the grant or loan program, and select grant or loan recipients in consultation with state agencies participating in the grant or loan program through the provision of grant or loan funds or technical assistance.
(2) A grant or loan may be awarded to a county or city that is required to or has chosen to plan under RCW 36.70A.040
and that is qualified pursuant to this section. The grant or loan shall be provided to assist a county or city in paying for the cost of preparing an environmental analysis under chapter 43.21C
RCW, that is integrated with a comprehensive plan, subarea plan, plan element, countywide planning policy, development regulation, monitoring program, or other planning activity adopted under or implementing this chapter that:
(a) Improves the process for project permit review while maintaining environmental quality; or
(b) Encourages use of plans and information developed for purposes of complying with this chapter to satisfy requirements of other state programs.
(3) In order to qualify for a grant or loan, a county or city shall:
(a) Demonstrate that it will prepare an environmental analysis pursuant to chapter 43.21C
RCW and subsection (2) of this section that is integrated with a comprehensive plan, subarea plan, plan element, countywide planning policy, development regulations, monitoring program, or other planning activity adopted under or implementing this chapter;
(b) Address environmental impacts and consequences, alternatives, and mitigation measures in sufficient detail to allow the analysis to be adopted in whole or in part by applicants for development permits within the geographic area analyzed in the plan;
(c) Demonstrate that procedures for review of development permit applications will be based on the integrated plans and environmental analysis;
(d) Include mechanisms to monitor the consequences of growth as it occurs in the plan area and to use the resulting data to update the plan, policy, or implementing mechanisms and associated environmental analysis;
(e) Demonstrate substantial progress towards compliance with the requirements of this chapter. A county or city that is more than six months out of compliance with a requirement of this chapter is deemed not to be making substantial progress towards compliance; and
(f) Provide local funding, which may include financial participation by the private sector.
(4) In awarding grants or loans, the department shall give preference to proposals that include one or more of the following elements:
(a) Financial participation by the private sector, or a public/private partnering approach;
(b) Identification and monitoring of system capacities for elements of the built environment, and to the extent appropriate, of the natural environment;
(c) Coordination with state, federal, and tribal governments in project review;
(d) Furtherance of important state objectives related to economic development, protection of areas of statewide significance, and siting of essential public facilities;
(e) Programs to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the permitting process by greater reliance on integrated plans and prospective environmental analysis;
(f) Programs for effective citizen and neighborhood involvement that contribute to greater likelihood that planning decisions can be implemented with community support;
(g) Programs to identify environmental impacts and establish mitigation measures that provide effective means to satisfy concurrency requirements and establish project consistency with the plans; or
(h) Environmental review that addresses the impacts of increased density or intensity of comprehensive plans, subarea plans, or receiving areas designated by a city or town under the regional transfer of development rights program in chapter 43.362
(5) If the local funding includes funding provided by other state functional planning programs, including open space planning and watershed or basin planning, the functional plan shall be integrated into and be consistent with the comprehensive plan.
(6) State agencies shall work with grant or loan recipients to facilitate state and local project review processes that will implement the projects receiving grants or loans under this section.