Chapter 17.05
REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS PROCESS

Sections:

17.05.010  Purpose.

17.05.020  Reasonable accommodations.

17.05.030  Waiver of building code requirements.

17.05.040  Accommodations personal to the applicant.

17.05.050  Appeal.

17.05.010 Purpose.

This chapter has been enacted to authorize the community services director or his designee to waive or vary provisions of the Edmonds Community Development Code when necessary to reasonably accommodate the statutory rights of the disabled under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Fair Housing Act (FHA) or the Washington Law Against Discrimination (WLAD). This process shall be interpreted and administered in order to ensure the full exercise and enjoyment of a disabled person's right to the residential housing of his or her choosing. The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to commercial activities or zones; provided, however, that nothing herein shall be interpreted to limit the exercise of a disabled person's rights by or through a residential care provider. In the event of any conflict or if an interpretation of this chapter is required, it shall be implemented and interpreted in accordance with the provisions of the Americans With Disabilities Act, the Fair Housing Act and the Washington Law Against Discrimination. [Ord. 3183 § 2, 1998; Ord. 3142 § 2, 1997].

17.05.020 Reasonable accommodations.

A. Upon the application of a disabled person or individual or entity providing services to the disabled in a residential facility or other group living arrangement, the community services director or his designee is hereby authorized to vary, modify, or waive the provisions of the Edmonds Community Development Code, including the provisions of ECDC Title 19, in order to provide a reasonable accommodation as necessary to provide to a disabled person's or care provider to the disabled's full enjoyment of a residence.

B. The city's duty to accommodate is an affirmative one, and the community services director is thereby authorized to provide accommodations in a thoughtful and proactive manner.

C. The following review may, at the discretion of the community services director, include citizen input into the administrative process. The community services director shall provide written notice of the accommodation to the applicant and property owners within 300 feet of the subject site.

D. When applying this reasonable accommodation process to the Edmonds Community Development Code, including the State Building Code and other codes adopted pursuant to ECDC Title 19 and Chapter 19.05 ECDC, the staff shall avoid the stereotypical assumptions regarding the disabled and shall attempt to ascertain the actual physical and/or mental limitation of the disabled individual in order to craft an accommodation which best suits the exercise of that individual's rights. [Ord. 3183 §§ 1, 2, 1998; Ord. 3142 § 2, 1997].

17.05.030 Waiver of building code requirements.

No reasonable accommodation shall be provided by a waiver or variance of the provisions of the codes adopted pursuant to Chapters 19.00 and 19.05 ECDC which does not substantially accomplish the purposes of those chapters or which would reduce the fire safety of any structure. Modifications, waivers or variances of the provisions of Uniform Building Code, Uniform Fire Code and the other codes adopted pursuant to Chapters 19.00 and 19.05 ECDC shall provide at least the same level of safety required by the respective state code. The applicant shall have the burden of establishing that the proposed modification, waiver or variance accomplishes substantially the same purpose without reduction of fire safety. [Ord. 3183 § 2, 1998; Ord. 3142 § 2, 1997].

17.05.040 Accommodations personal to the applicant.

The accommodation provided shall be personal to the applicant and shall not run with the land; provided, however, that a change in a residential structure necessary to accommodate the operation of a residential care provider to the disabled may be continued by future operations of similar facilities at the site who establish the same use within six months of the date the prior use by disabled person or residential care provider ceases. The community services director may therefore direct that any physical change in the structure which would otherwise be illegal under the use or bulk requirements of the Community Development Code be brought into compliance six months after the date of sale or transfer of a residential structure to a person or entity not qualifying for the protections of the ADA, FHA and WLAD. [Ord. 3183 § 2, 1998; Ord. 3142 § 2, 1997].

17.05.050 Appeal.

There shall be no appeal from the decision of the community services director within the city. Interested persons, that is persons located within 300 feet of the building site, may appeal the reasonable accommodation by filing a petition for review with Snohomish County Superior Court within 10 days of the date of mailing of the written notice of decision. [Ord. 3183 § 2, 1998; Ord. 3142 § 2, 1997].