Archive for May 2014
Spokane Valley likely will be taking a pass on joining the county's regional solid waste system.
The city council unanimously decided tonight to advance a proposed contract with Sunshine Disposal & Recycling for final consideration next week, despite warnings from county officials who contend that comparisons suggesting Valley residents would save at least $250,000 a year are flawed. Spokane County Commissioner Todd Mielke said the difference between the Sunshine rate and the county's estimate is almost indistinguishable when all variables are taken into account, while Commissioner Shelly O'Quinn added that the county plan provides greater overall cost benefits and better customer service.
City officials stood by their comparisons, however, and council members said it would be irresponsible to move forward with a county plan that lacks any rate guarantees. Sunshine's offer included a guaranteed rate with future increases kept below inflation.
The proposed Sunshine contract will be brought to a final vote next Tuesday.
Several other cities across Spokane County were meeting tonight to consider private-sector options as well.
Look for a roundup later this week in The Spokesman-Review.
A proposed land-use change that would have allowed large apartment complexes in a mostly rural neighborhood along Barker Road was dumped tonight by the Spokane Valley City Council.
Council members voted 6-1 against moving the proposal forward for further consideration, saying the infrastructure is inadequate to accommodate apartments and that it would be detrimental to the existing neighborhood.
“This is not an apartment building neighborhood,” said Councilmember Ed Pace.
The proposal by Whipple Consulting Engineers would have reclassified a 5-acre parcel at Barker Road and the old Sprague Avenue from low- to high-density residential.
The neighborhood, however, banded together to fight it, packing several City Council meetings to protest the change.
“We feel pretty good,” said Danny Smith, who shares a home with his daughter and son-in-law on a 1-acre parcel adjacent to the proposed land-use change. “We knew it was close and had no idea how the vote would go.”
Spokane Valley Mall will be transformed into Spokane Valley City Hall for part of Thursday.
Mayor Dean Grafos will kick of the event at noon with his first state of the city address.
Other highlights include demonstrations of the Valley's new smartphone app, and the city's new online permitting system. Sheriff's Office volunteers will be distributing free bike helmets and the countywide animal control service, SCRAPS, will have a cat available for adoption along with information on other pets available. There's also kids activities organized by the city's Parks and Recreation Department.
The event will run until 5 p.m.