United States District Court, W.D. Washington, Seattle
ORDER GRANTING DEFENDANT'S MOTION FOR SUMMARY
RICARDO S. MARTINEZ CHIEF UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter comes before the Court on Defendant City of
Edmonds' Motions for Summary Judgment. Dkt. #10. Edmonds
argues that all of Plaintiff Odell Hobbs' claims fail for
procedural and substantive reasons, and that there is no
question of material fact. Mr. Hobbs has failed to oppose
this Motion. For the reasons set forth below, the Court
GRANTS Defendant's Motion and dismisses all of
Hobbs is the owner of a residence at 22514 93rd Place West,
in the City of Edmonds. Dkt. #1 (“Complaint”) at
¶ 10. In November 2014, the residence was damaged by
fire. Complaint at ¶ 11.
the Edmonds City Code, if a nonconforming building or
structure is destroyed or damaged in an amount less than 75%
of the building's replacement cost at the time of
destruction, the structure may be repaired, and the building
can be returned to its former size, shape, and lot location
as existed before the damage occurred. ECDC 17.40.020(F);
see Dkt #12-1. If, however, the cost of the repairs
exceeds 75% of the building's replacement cost at the
time of destruction, it is deemed a “new
structure” and must be constructed in full conformance
with existing building regulations. Id.
January 11, 2016, Mr. Hobbs submitted a permit application
with the City. Dkt. #11 (“Bjorback Decl.”) ¶
4, Ex. A. On it, Mr. Hobbs' developer stated that the
scope of work was limited to “Fire repair. Increasing
roof pitch to accept comp shingles.” Id. The
developer estimated the project's value at $150,
000-below the 75% threshold for a new structure. Id.
then granted a building permit for repairs to portions of Mr.
Hobbs house that were damaged by the fire. Bjorback Decl. at
¶ 5, Ex. B. This permit states that “ALL WORK [IS]
SUBJECT TO FIELD INSPECTION FOR CODE COMPLIANCE, ” and
that all changes in plans and field modifications must be
approved. See id. The goes on:
Nothing in this permit approval process shall be interpreted
as allowing or permitting the maintenance of any currently
existing illegal, nonconforming, or unpermitted building,
structure, or site condition which is outside the scope of
the permit application, regardless of whether such building,
structure, or condition is shown on the site plan or drawing.
Such building, structure, or condition may be the subject of
a separate enforcement action.
March 16, 2016, upon inspection, Edmonds building inspectors
noted an apparent violation of the City's building codes.
See Id. Mr. Hobbs' contractor had significantly
exceeded the amount of demolition allowed by the permit
drawings. A Correction Notice was provided, which gave Mr.
Hobbs an opportunity to either revise his plans, or
demonstrate his compliance with the existing ones. Bjorback
Decl. at ¶ 8, Ex. C.
contractor submitted revised plans and a construction
estimate to the City of Edmonds. Bjorback Decl. ¶ 9, Ex.
D-E. Pursuant to ECDC 17.40.020, the Building Official
evaluated the updated construction estimate-consistent with
national standards, as well as his own past practice-to
assess whether the level of demolition of the house exceeded
75% of the replacement cost of the original house. Bjorback
Decl. ¶ 13. And it turned out that the extent of
demolition/removal, based upon the information provided, was
approximately 84.7%. Bjorback Decl. ¶ 13. This was
explained by correspondence and over the phone. See
several requests, neither Mr. Hobbs nor his contractor
provided the City with the revised construction estimate.
See Bjorback Decl. ¶¶ 10-12. The
City's Building Official made several attempts to explain
the City's Development Code to Mr. Hobbs in order to move
the construction project forward. See id.; Ex. F-G.
letter was sent to Mr. Hobbs expressing Edmonds' intent
to revoke his permit. Bjorback Decl. ¶ 14, Ex. H. It
explained that the demolition exceeded what the City's
Development Code would allow, thus, any proposed construction
from that point forward would be considered “New Single
Family” construction and would require a new building
permit and be subject to all applicable requirements for a
new structure. See Id. In order to assist and
expedite Mr. Hobbs through the review process, Edmonds
offered to meet with him and his contractor in order to
discuss compliance issues that needed to be resolved in order
to move forward with the project. See id.
Significantly, this letter closed with the following
If you do not contact [the City of Edmonds] by July 15, 2016,
you will have waived your opportunity for a pre-deprivation
hearing and to challenge [the City's] initial
determination that you have reached the 75% ...