Community Investment

WHEREAS, there is an increasing need for Washington to strengthen the ability of its communities in protecting the public and private investments in them and to better plan for and manage growth or decline and economic changes in the best interests of conservation and development; and

WHEREAS, this administration recognizes that there is a necessary partnership between state and local governments, which is responsible for preserving and revitalizing the quality of our existing communities through fuller use and enhancement of the existing public and private investments in them, to minimize the economic costs of population growth to local governments and to individual residents of the state, to protect our valuable agriculture and natural resources, and to maintain and renew the important environmental assets that are the mainstay of both the state's economy and its quality of life; and

WHEREAS, the nature of the state's communities varies according to the density of the population, the basis of the economy, and the character of the environment.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Dixy Lee Ray, Governor of the state of Washington, do hereby order that every state department, commission, board, or other agency of state government making decisions affecting the conservation or the development of communities and affecting their policies for guiding growth, shall promote the following:

A. Urban Areas: In areas with dense population and identifiable centers of commerce, industry, and other activities that support an urban existence, the highest priority should be 1) to encourage rehabilitation and further development to revitalize the economic, social, and physical environment; and 2) to maintain basically stable, identifiable neighborhoods and communities as well as to encourage development so long as it does not disrupt that stability or overtax available urban services.

B. Urban Perimeters: In areas adjacent to urban centers having moderate development, with existing or planned utilities and other public services, but with vacant land capable of being developed, the highest priority should be 1) to encourage the new growth that normally occurs on the perimeters of urban centers to take place in locally specified areas capable of supporting large-scale mixed uses and densities in close relationship with urban areas; and 2) to discourage premature, scattered new urban development restricting its exceeding the carrying capacity of the site or so it does not require necessary public investments into new or expanded facilities, utilities, and services.

C. Rural Areas: in areas beyond urban perimeters and with a preponderance of vacant land capable of intensive development, the highest priority should be 1) to encourage the clustering in locally specified centers of relatively high density land uses that occur in rural communities, such as residential, shopping, employment, and public services; and 2) to discourage forms and intensities of structural development if they exceed on-site carrying capacity for water supply and sewage disposal, or if they are inconsistent with open rural character or conservation values of adjacent areas, and are more appropriately located in rural.communities.

D. Natural Resource Bases: In areas primarily comprised of agricultural, recreational, and other open lands capable of providing natural resources, the highest priority should be to discourage structural development if site planning and secondary effects are incompatible with the existence of adequate open space for the production of food, fiber, and forest crops, and with the use and enjoyment of natural resources and scenic beauty.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set
my hand and caused the seal of the State of
Washington to be affixed at Olympia this
5th day of January A.D., Nineteen hundred and eighty-one.

Dixy Lee Ray
Governor of Washington


Secretary of State