Kingston UGA plan appealed by citizens

PORT ORCHARD — While the Kingston Subarea plan has been appealed to the Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board, it is another attempt for several concerned residents to try and prove to Kitsap County the inconsistencies of its land-use planning tools.

The group Kitsap Citizens for Responsible Planning and Port Orchard resident Jerry Harless submitted an appeal of the subarea plan Feb. 17 to Kitsap County. The plan was adopted by the Kitsap County Board of Commissioners in December 2005, which amended the county’s comprehensive plan by expanding Kingston’s Urban Growth Area boundaries and redesignating certain lands from rural to urban use.

Four issues are being challenged, with the appellants claiming that the county has violated the state’s Growth Management Act with the following actions:

• The Kingston UGA boundaries were adjusted before Kitsap County had completed its 10-year comprehensive plan update; KCRP and Harless believe that growth in the county should be adjusted overall, not piecemeal with Urban Growth Area plans

• In a separate part of the state code, the county failed to amend the county’s comprehensive plan without accounting for all the allocated growth for the entire county

• The county failed to comply with state code by adjusting Kingston UGA boundaries without first reviewing reasonable measures to contain the current growth within the existing UGA

• The data collected for the Urban Land Capacity Analysis (ULCA), a tool used to determine how much land is available for projected population growth could be expected within the UGA boundaries, was incorrect

These practices are becoming typical, not just with land-use planning in the North End, Harless alleges.

“Several of the issues that are coming up in Kingston are coming out in the rest of the county,” he said, such as using data from ULCA, of which Harless and KCRP believe has some “serious errors.”

For example, the appellants believe the ULCA doesn’t account for land that could be available for development, Harless said.

The appellants also believe the county still hasn’t complied with the GMA requirement to implement reasonable measures to correct inconsistencies in the county’s comprehensive plan, which is an issue that has been going on for several years, he added.

The county is currently reviewing the appeal and a hearing with the CPSGM board is set for June, with a decision expected in August.

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