Wednesday, December 10, 2008

"code interpretation"

The dog park across the street now has a "code interpretation". Seems that Snohomish county is going to allow them to let dogs run without leashes on a pasture. In order to run a FREE dog park the poor guy had to institute a letter writing campaign, go to two hearings, and have numerous conversations with the zoning folks. It didnt' get resolved until he threatened to picket the opening of a county-financed dog park. Heres a guy making offleash space available for free and the county is all over him.

I really haven't talked much about the regulatory burden that the county puts on farmers, but it's pretty intense. Snohomish counties charter says that retaining agriculture is an important goal, and historically a big part of the county. In fact, the county has a website, "focus on farming" that celebrates a farm a mile or so away from mine.

But in order to build a 19.5'x20 barn, I'm being required to:
Survey my land, and mark the elevations of the four corners of the building $1400
Prove that the building is being constructed of "flood resistant materials",which in the counties view is both massive timbers (8x8, for instance) that are pressure treated.
and complete and file a shoreline management permit.

Why? So I can flood insure my building. It doesn't matter that my building has a total materials cost of $1200, or that I'll NEVER EVER flood insure it, or that it's so small that anywhere else in the county off the 100 year flood plain, I wouldn't need any permit at all.

Nope. The county wants me to gold plate my hay barn. They want me to pay more than twice the value of the barn itself in permit and permit related fees.

You know how hard it is to work in the pouring rain, or try to keep hay dry with a tarp?

So much for snohomish county "encouraging" farming.

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