PDFRCW 39.108.005


(1) Recognizing that uncoordinated and poorly planned growth poses a threat to the environment, sustainable economic development, and the health, safety, and high quality of life enjoyed by residents of this state, the legislature passed the growth management act, chapter 36.70A RCW. The planning goals adopted through the growth management act encourage development in urban areas where public facilities and services exist or can be provided efficiently, conservation of productive forest and agricultural lands, and a reduction of sprawl.
(2) Under RCW 36.70A.090 and 43.362.005 the legislature has encouraged:
(a) The use of innovative land use management techniques, including the transfer of development rights, to meet growth management goals; and
(b) The creation of a regional transfer of development rights marketplace in the central Puget Sound to assist in conserving agricultural and forestland, as well as other lands of state or regional priority.
(3) The legislature finds that:
(a) Local governments are in need of additional resources to provide public infrastructure to meet the needs of a growing population, and that public infrastructure is fundamental to community health, safety, and economic vitality. Investment in public infrastructure in growing urban areas supports growth management goals, encourages the redevelopment of underutilized or blighted urban areas, stimulates business activity and helps create jobs, lowers the cost of housing, promotes efficient land use, and improves residents' quality of life;
(b) Transferring development rights from agricultural and forestlands to urban areas where public facilities and services exist or can be provided efficiently and cost-effectively will ensure vibrant, economically viable communities. Directing growth to communities where people can live close to where they work or have access to transportation choices will also advance state goals regarding climate change by reducing vehicle miles traveled and by reducing fuel consumption and emissions that contribute to climate change. Directing growth to these communities will further help avoid the impacts of stormwater runoff to Puget Sound by avoiding impervious surfaces associated with development in watershed uplands;
(c) A transfer of development rights marketplace is particularly appropriate for conserving agricultural and forestland of long-term commercial significance. Transferring the development rights from these lands of statewide importance to cities will help achieve a specific goal of the growth management act by keeping them in farming and forestry, thereby helping ensure these remain viable industries in counties experiencing population growth. Transferring growth from agricultural and forestland of long-term commercial significance will also reduce costs to the counties that otherwise would be responsible for the provision of infrastructure and services for development on these lands, which are generally further from existing infrastructure and services; and
(d) The state and its residents benefit from investment in public infrastructure that is associated with urban growth facilitated by the transfer of development from agricultural and forestlands of long-term commercial significance. These activities advance multiple state growth management goals and benefit the state and local economies. It is in the public interest to enable local governments to finance such infrastructure investments and to incentivize development right transfers in the central Puget Sound through this chapter.
[ 2011 c 318 s 101.]


Rules2011 c 318: "The department of commerce may adopt any rules under chapter 34.05 RCW it considers necessary for the administration of this chapter." [ 2011 c 318 s 901.]