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(1) Filing. Every administrative appeal shall be filed with the city within 10 days after the date of the decision of the matter being appealed. If the 10-day period ends on a weekend or on a holiday, the following working day shall be the tenth day.

(2) Contents. The notice of appeal shall contain a concise statement identifying:

(a) The decision being appealed;

(b) The name and address of the appellant and his/her interest(s) in the matter;

(c) The specific reasons why the appellant believes the decision to be wrong, including identification of each finding of fact, each conclusion, and each condition or action ordered which the appellant alleges is erroneous. The appellant shall bear the burden of proving the decision was wrong;

(d) The specific desired outcome or changes to the decision;

(e) The appeal fee.

(3) Rejection of Appeal. If an appeal is not properly filed because one or more of the required materials set forth in this section has not been submitted to the municipal services director within the time limit established in this section, the municipal services director has the authority to reject the appeal. In such instances, the municipal services director shall inform the appellant in writing that the appeal has been rejected and include an explanation of its deficiency(ies).

(4) Process. Upon receipt of a notice of appeal containing all information required in subsection (2) of this section, the city shall schedule with the applicable hearing body either an open record hearing or a closed record appeal hearing if an open record hearing has already been held on an application.

(5) Stay of Proceedings. If an appeal is properly filed within the time limit, the appealed decision shall be suspended, and no further development action which is the subject of the appeal may be taken until the appeal is decided, but if a suspension would cause imminent peril to life or property, development action may be continued only by an order issued by the board or by a court of competent jurisdiction.

(6) Closed record appeals shall be conducted in accordance with the hearing body’s rules of procedure and shall serve to provide argument and guidance for the body’s decision. Closed record appeals shall be conducted generally as provided for public hearings, except that no new evidence or testimony shall be given or received except as provided in subsection (6)(c) of this section. Closed record appeal hearings may be continued as determined necessary by the hearing body. The parties to the appeal may submit timely written statements or arguments.

(a) A decision following a closed record appeal hearing shall include one of the following actions:

(i) Grant the appeal in whole or in part.

(ii) Deny the appeal in whole or in part.

(iii) Remand for further proceedings and/or evidentiary hearing.

(b) In the event the hearing body determines that the public hearing record or record on appeal is insufficient or otherwise flawed, it may remand the matter back to the hearing body to correct the deficiencies. The items or issues to be considered and the time frame for completing the additional work shall be specified.

(c) The hearing body may receive new evidence in addition to that contained in the record on appeal only if it relates to the validity of the underlying decision at the time the decision was made and is needed to decide disputed issues regarding:

(i) The proper constitution of or disqualification grounds pertaining to the decision maker.

(ii) The use of unlawful procedure.

(7) The burden of proof in an administrative appeal is on the appellant.

(8) SEPA Appeals. In addition to the items listed above, Chapter 16.05 ECMC shall be complied with when filing administrative appeals of SEPA decisions or determinations. (Ord. 436 § 1, 2010)