In March 2008, I helped a client complete the first Development Agreement in Okanogan County.
The development agreement was a voluntary contract between Okanogan County and Okanogan View Estates LLC, detailing the obligations of both parties and specifying the standards and conditions that would govern development of the property.
The development agreement provided assurances to the developer that the applicable development regulations would not change for a 10 year term. The agreement included provisions such as the maximum number of lots that could be developed (120), water allocation, and roadway standards. The county required certain conditions to mitigate project impacts, as well as clarification about project phasing and public improvements.
Due to the real estate slow down, the developer later requested and received an extension so the agreement remained applicable for 20-years.
Following this first development agreement, a handful of other developers started using them elsewhere in the county. A precedent was set and continues to be utilized by other developers today.