County, city staff to present to Sammamish City Council on ELST March 3

A top King County Parks official, Kevin Brown, and Laura Philpot, deputy city manager for Sammamish, will present updates to the City Council tomorrow (March 3) on the controversies surrounding the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

Focus will be on Section 2A, that portion from the Issaquah City Limits north to 33rd St. (the 7-11), which is next on the County’s plan to remake the trail to its final design.

Missteps, lack of communication, and a variety of issues on the Northern section (Inglewood Hill Road to the Redmond City Limits) caused an uproar among some property owners, conflicts with the County and a huge embarrassment for the City government.

Following this, the City stepped up to pay close attention to the design for Section 2A, including submitting comments to the County by the Oct. 29 deadline. When the 90% design came out at the end of December, it appeared that neither citizen nor City comments were considered.

The City blew a gasket that its comments were apparently ignored. Philpot told the County that the City wouldn’t accept transfer of the development permit from the County or it may reject it outright. Any appeal by the County would take enough time that its federal funding would be withdrawn.

(The complex Inter Local Agreement between the City and County whereby the County does the permit processing is described in my January 17 post.)

Continue reading “County, city staff to present to Sammamish City Council on ELST March 3”

Sammamish Initiative/Referendum campaign kicks off amid charges of stolen signs, attempts to ban Citizen group from city facilities

The Yes campaign for Sammamish voters to approve an advisory vote April 28 to give them the right to Initiative and Referendum was kicked off last night (Feb. 23) amid charges that Yes vote road signs are already being stolen.

Citizens for Sammamish, which is behind the Initiative/Referendum movement, also charged that Deputy Mayor Kathy Huckabay, who is opposed to granting the right, attempted to block usage by CFS of the Eastside Fire & Rescue fire station on Sahalee Way, where it usually meets, and the Boys and Girls Club, where last night’s meeting was held, because CFS is now “campaigning” for the the Yes vote.

Continue reading “Sammamish Initiative/Referendum campaign kicks off amid charges of stolen signs, attempts to ban Citizen group from city facilities”

County cites “breakdown in internal communications” over ELST plan for Section 2A keeping semi-truck wide design

  • From tonight’s City Council meeting:
    • City Staff and County Staff are meeting this week.
    • The City Council wants the County to come to the March 3 council meeting to explain themselves.
    • The City Council is hopping mad at the County. Member Ramiro Valderrama wants a discussion about withdrawing the Trail from the Inter Local Agreement (ILA) with the County, but this effort failed to muster a majority because it’s unknown what unintended consequences could be. This subject could be revisited if the March 3 County Come-to-Jesus meeting is unsatisfactory.
    • Deputy Mayor Kathy Huckabay wants to give the County the “benefit of the doubt” over the “communications” issue. (!!!)
    • Member Tom Odell, who had met with County officials about the North end troubles and came away cautiously optimistic, has “had it.”
    • When the video tape of the meeting is posted on the City web site in about three or four days, the discussion at the top of the meeting (including a staff report) is worth watching. It takes about an hour. Then skip ahead to public comment for my remarks.

Now for my commentary today.

It’s not often I am gobsmacked by government, but one should never under estimate the incompetence of King County.

The County issued its design plans for that portion of the East Lake Sammamish Trail that runs from 33rd St (the 7-11) to the Issaquah City Limits, and it’s the identical design to the North end that has caused so much controversy.

Please see my post of Sunday, County to City, citizens: Drop Dead, for context.

I emailed the City Feb. 15 about the design. What I got back pretty much summed up the County’s position by this clip from the Paul Newman movie, Cool Hand Luke.

Continue reading “County cites “breakdown in internal communications” over ELST plan for Section 2A keeping semi-truck wide design”

County to Sammamish, citizens on East Lake Sammamish Trail: Drop Dead. County sticks with design, tree destruction

King County’s design for the Southern portion of improving the East Lake Sammamish Trail is 90% complete and despite indicating to Sammamish city officials that it would be more flexible, nothing in the design appears to be responsive to the City of residents.

In other words: Drop dead.

Continue reading “County to Sammamish, citizens on East Lake Sammamish Trail: Drop Dead. County sticks with design, tree destruction”

Election year for Sammamish: key dates ahead

Update, 9:05pm: The Klahanie annexation decision was ratified on a 6-0 vote, with Whitten absent. The Initiative/Referendum advisory vote was ratified on a 5-1 vote with Odell opposed and Whitten absent.

Original Post:

Feb. 3, 2015: This is an election year for Sammamish. There are three key election dates: April 28, Aug. 4 and Nov. 3.

April 28

At the City Council meeting tonight, officials are expected to ratify action agreed to at the Retreat last month setting April 28 as the special election for: Continue reading “Election year for Sammamish: key dates ahead”

Sammamish to send Initiative/Referendum to citizens for advisory vote-Part 2

Jan. 24, 2015: The Sammamish City Council agreed at its retreat today at the Suncadia Resort in Roslyn (WA) to ask its citizens whether the right to initiative and referendum should be adopted by the City.

The Council will formalize its consensus approval at the Feb. 3 City Council meeting. No formal, legally binding action could be taken at the retreat, including appointments of Council representation to regional committees.

The advocacy group Citizens for Sammamish (CFS) has been pressing the City Council to adopt an ordinance granting the right. Council members have been reluctant to approve the initiative/referendum process because of what they view how the state process became abused by Tim Eyman, who makes a living at filing state initiatives; and the increasing dominance by “big money” interests rather than the original intent of power to the people.

Continue reading “Sammamish to send Initiative/Referendum to citizens for advisory vote-Part 2”

Sammamish retreat: 2040 vision, annexation, council relations–Part 1

The Sammamish City Council’s annual retreat revealed similar visions for the City by 2040, with a population reaching about 80,000 (the maximum under current land use zoning), a more technologically advanced city and local transit shuttles.
Council members also hoped to expand the tree canopy despite current development that has seen large-scale removal of trees; greater use of electric and even driverless cars; and redeveloped commercial areas at the QFC and Safeway complexes in addition to the Town Center, which is on the cusp of realizing the vision that was created in 2009.

Continue reading “Sammamish retreat: 2040 vision, annexation, council relations–Part 1”