The Washington State Growth Management Act (RCW 36.70A) requires regional collaborative planning. To comply with this statewide requirement, Skagit County as well as its four cities and four towns first developed a set of countywide planning principles in 1992. Countywide planning principles or “CPPs” provide a framework by which county, city, and town comprehensive plans are developed and adopted. The 1992 CPPs were later amended in 1996, and then replaced by the 2002 Framework Agreement.
The 2002 Framework Agreement was developed and adopted by Skagit County; the Town of La Conner; and the cities of Anacortes, Burlington, Mount Vernon, and Sedro-Woolley. The Town of Hamilton signed onto the agreement in 2014. The Town of Concrete and the Town of Lyman have the ability to sign onto the agreement in the future.
Skagit County, the four cities, and the four towns coordinated not only on CPPs. The Skagit region’s collaborative planning efforts have also led to the modifications of urban growth area boundaries and the allocation of population and employment growth across the county.
The Skagit Council of Governments (SCOG) is not a party to the 2002 Framework Agreement. However, SCOG does provide administrative support to the planning organization identified as the “GMA Committee” in the Framework Agreement, which includes a Steering Committee and a Technical Advisory Committee.
The Growth Management Act Steering Committee is composed of elected officials; its related Technical Advisory Committee is composed of planning directors and other regional planning staff. The Steering Committee develops recommendations for countywide planning principles, urban growth areas, and allocations of population and employment growth. The recommendations are to be used in the comprehensive planning processes of local jurisdictions that are required to plan under the Growth Management Act.
Comprehensive Plan Consistency
Under the statewide Growth Management Act, Regional Transportation Planning Organizations are responsible for ensuring that transportation elements in local comprehensive plans are consistent with the Regional Transportation Plan (RCW 47.80.023). Skagit Council of Governments – as the Skagit region’s transportation planning organization – is in the process of developing a consistency review process. Check back for more details.