RCW 82.02.050-.110 and WAC 365-196-850 authorize counties, cities, and towns planning under the Growth Management Act (GMA) to impose various types of impact fees, including for transportation, schools, parks, and fire protection facilities. For non-GMA cities, there is authority in the Local Transportation Act (LTA), Chapter 39.92 RCW, to impose transportation impact fees to mitigate the impact on infrastructure from development.
As we note on our Revenue Guide for Washington Cities and Towns (p. 144), this allows for a fee charged to developers to mitigate the impacts on infrastructure and capital facilities because of increased demand resulting from new development. Revenues are restricted and may only be used for transportation. The fee may be imposed by any city, but since typically impact fees are assessed under the GMA rather than LTA the city cannot impose both. Since your city does not plan under GMA that restriction does not apply. Also, the fee does not require voter approval. The fee must be limited to the “amount that the local government can demonstrate is reasonably necessary as a direct result of the proposed development.” See RCW 39.92.030(4).
The fee authorized under Chapter 39.92 RCW does not run afoul of the prohibition on development fees in RCW 82.02.020. That section specifically says that “Nothing in this section prohibits counties, cities, or towns from imposing transportation impact fees authorized pursuant to Chapter 39.92 RCW.”
Our inquiry database indicates that the City of Lacey imposes a Local Transportation Act fee. See Lacey Municipal Code Ch. 14.21.
MRSC’s Selected Funding Sources for Public Facilities webpage includes several additional examples of ways to help mitigate impacts resulting from development, including the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) mitigation, voluntary agreements, and local improvement districts.