Annual Comprehensive Plan Amendment Process for 2018

This online open house was last updated on November 6, 2019

What is the Comprehensive Plan?
The Kitsap County Comprehensive Plan describes the 20-year vision for unincorporated Kitsap County and how that vision will be achieved.  The plan covers land use, economic development, environment, housing and human services, transportation, capital facilities and utilities as well as parks, recreation, and open space.  The Comprehensive Plan is mandated by the Washington State Growth Management Act (RCW 36.70A).

How often does the Comprehensive Plan get changed?
Major Comprehensive Plan updates are mandated by the state every 8-years. The last major update of the Kitsap County Comprehensive Plan was adopted in 2016.  Between major updates, the County may choose to consider minor amendments to the Comprehensive Plan on an annual basis.  Other amendments, such as to resolve an appeal, can be processed at any time.


Expand the headings below to learn more about each phase of this important process.

   SCOPING PHASE (November - December 2017)

The first phase of the process, called the scoping phase, determines what amendments will be considered in 2018.  The Board of County Commissioners do this through the adoption of a docket resolution for the annual Comprehensive Plan amendment process.  The docket resolution describes what types of amendments will be considered.  The Board of County Commissioners adopted the initial docket (Resolution No. 246-2017) on December 27, 2017.

What public comments were received and how were they considered?

A public comment period was open on the staff recommended docket resolution from November 27, 2017 through December 15, 2017.  Oral and written public testimony was made during a public hearing on Monday, December 11, 2017.  Written comments submitted in advance of the public hearing were due Sunday, December 10, 2017.

The Board of County Commissioners extended the public comment period through Friday, December 15, 2017.  Written comments were accepted:

      • Online via computer or mobile device

      • By email 

      • By mail

      • Dropped off at the Department of Community Development

View Public Comments with Staff Responses & Staff Recommendations

All public comments were reviewed by the Board of County Commissioners.  Most comments were already covered by the original staff recommended docket resolution or were already covered by the existing Comprehensive Plan and therefore did not require further amendment to the Comprehensive Plan.    Based on public comments, the Board of County Commissioners added a new item to the docket resolution to review affordable housing policies.  The following are the issues raised in public comments that were not adopted into the docket resolution: 
      • Site-specific applications to increase residential densities in rural areas

      • Various issues related to the Hirst decision (water right from exempt wells)


   DEVELOPMENT PHASE (January - April 2018)

The second phase of the process, called the development phase, is when most county-sponsored amendments (including alternatives, if appropriate) are developed.  Since the docket resolution allows for the submittal of certain applications from interested parties, they were developed and submitted during this phase of the process.

Public participation in the development of county-sponsored amendments varied.  Some county-sponsored amendments included specific public participation opportunities during this phase of the process.  Some county-sponsored amendments were already developed through a separate public process and therefore did not have specific additional opportunities for public participation during this phase of the process. Public review of all proposed amendments will occur during the consideration phase later in this process. 

What is the purpose of a Comprehensive Plan amendment application?

Comprehensive Plan amendment applications provide an opportunity for interested parties to propose legislative changes to the content of the Kitsap County Comprehensive Plan, including the land use designation of property on the Land Use Map and corresponding changes to the zoning classification on the Zoning Map.  The specific types of eligible applications for the 2018 process were determined during the scoping phase.  All applications are reviewed against the decision criteria provided in Section 21.08.070 of the Kitsap County Code


Site-specific amendment applications are for requesting an amendment to the Kitsap County Comprehensive Plan Land Use Map that affects no more than five contiguous parcels. A site-specific amendment only affects the Comprehensive Plan Land Use Map and the Kitsap County Zoning Map - it does not affect the text of the Comprehensive Plan or Kitsap County development regulations.

What site-specific amendment applications were submitted?

Applications for site-specific amendments were accepted from January 9, 2018 to February 6, 2018 for the following areas of consideration:

  • Changing the land use designation to Mineral Resource Overlay (MRO) on property outside urban growth areas.
  • Changing the land use designation to Forest Resource Lands (FRL) on property outside urban growth areas.
  • Changing the land use designation on property within an Urban Growth Area for the purpose of infill and redevelopment.

What amendments continued into the next phase?

The Board of County Commissioners reviewed the status of the Comprehensive Plan amendments  on March 28, 2018 and April 4, 2018 and adopted the final docket of amendments (Resolution No. 064-2018) that will continue forward in the annual Comprehensive Plan amendment process for 2018.  One County-sponsored amendment was added.  No amendments were removed. 


   ANALYSIS PHASE (April - June 2018)


The third phase of the process, called the analysis phase, is when staff analyze the Comprehensive Plan amendments through the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) review process and the preparation of staff reports.  SEPA review evaluates the probable environmental impacts of each amendment.  Staff reports analyze amendments for consistency with state law, the Comprehensive Plan, and the decision criteria in Kitsap County Code Chapter 21.08.  Staff reports include recommendations for approval, approval with revisions, approval with conditions, deferral to a subsequent year, or denial. Staff reports and SEPA analysis may be updated, as needed during the consideration phase.


   CONSIDERATION PHASE (June - December 2018)

The fourth phase of the process, called the consideration phase, is when the public, Planning Commission and Board of County Commissioners review the proposed amendments.  Planning Commission makes recommendations on the amendments, and the Board makes a final decision.  The public has been informed about the amendments and encouraged to participate in the process through extensive outreach and engagement efforts.

Planning Commission consideration occurred from late-June 2018 to mid-September 2018 and included a public comment period from June 28, 2018 through August 7, 2018 and public hearings on July 17, 2018 and July 31, 2018.  Public open houses were held on July 10, 2018 in Kingston, July 11, 2018 in Port Orchard, and July 12, 2018 in Silverdale.  The Planning Commission adopted findings of fact and recommendations on September 21, 2018.

The Board of County Commissioners considered the proposed amendments and recommendations from October 2018 through December 2018.  During this time, there was an additional public comment period and an additional public hearing. On December 10, 2018, the Board made their final decision on the amendments through the adoption of Ordinance No. 565-2018.


The George's Corner Limited Area of More Intensive Development (LAMIRD) Boundary Adjustment amendment was appealed to the Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board (Case No. 19-3-0006).  The Hearings Board's final decision and order invalidated and remanded the amendment to the County for correction.  To resolve the appeal, the County is considering an ordinance that will re-adjust the southeast boundary of the George's Corner LAMIRD as well as re-designate and rezone portions of affected parcels. 

A public hearing was held on October 28, 2019 and a public comment period was open from October 14, 2019 through October 29, 2019 on a draft ordinance that would retract only the portion of the LAMIRD that had been expanded in 2018 and would not reverse the prior retraction along the southern boundary of the LAMIRD that occurred in 2018. 

Based on the public comments received, the Board will also consider an alternative ordinance proposed by the Department of Community Development that would repeal the changes made in 2018 and return the LAMIRD and zoning boundaries to what existed prior to the 2018 amendment.

A decision regarding this amendment is expected on November 25, 2019.