One Harbor Point seeks special privilege to dump untreated storm water directly into Gig Harbor Bay.
During the public hearing on June 26, 2017, the planner assigned to the One Harbor Point development agreement, Peter Katich, stated that One Harbor Point was seeking a deviation from the City's storm water treatment regulations, to allow the developer to simply dump storm water from their project directly into Gig Harbor Bay. He also stated that One Harbor Point was requesting that the development agreement, including the storm water treatment regulations, would be vested for a period of 10 years. “Vested” means that once an application for development has been submitted correctly it can no longer be changed by any new zoning or building codes.
Recently, the Washington Supreme Court held that the vested rights doctrine does not apply to storm water regulations because they are "mandatory state regulations, regarding water pollution rather than discretionary local regulations." Snohomish County vs. Pollution Control Hearings Board, 187 Wash.2d 346 (2016). This means that it is illegal to attempt to vest storm water treatment.
See communication between my attorney Carol Morris and Angela Heye, Storm Water Engineer, Washington Department of Ecology – Water Quality Program. As you will see, the Ms. Heye is quite concerned about the One Harbor Point plans.
The One Harbor Point Developers should not be allowed to deviate from state law regarding storm water run-off pollution in order to save the expense of building storm water treatment infrastructure. It has been my position since submitting the Katke Amendment that all developers and the city should follow state law.
Jeffrey Katke | Gig Harbor Resident