July 28, 2009 in City

Bistro’s neighbors sue county

Enforcement of wastewater disposal rules sought
By The Spokesman-Review

The county faces a new legal challenge over McGlades Bistro and Wine Bar, a Colbert restaurant at the center of a planning and zoning controversy.

An attorney for the restaurant’s neighbors near Yale and Day-Mount Spokane roads has filed a lawsuit demanding the county Planning Department enforce the law governing water use. Rick Eichstaedt, of the Center for Justice, is asking for a writ of mandamus, an order from a judge telling the county to enforce the Critical Aquifer Recharge Area statute that limits the amount of wastewater a business can put into its septic system.

Jim Emacio, chief civil deputy prosecutor for Spokane County, said the suit has been forwarded to Planning Director John Pederson for review and an explanation of enforcement actions already studied. One complicating factor for the county is measuring wastewater produced, because not all water that comes into the business goes out as wastewater, he said.

A Spokane County Superior Court judge recently ruled the state’s Growth Management Board didn’t have jurisdiction to overturn a zoning change the county granted McGlades, Emacio said. Late last year, the previous owners of the property settled a lawsuit against the county over another disputed zoning decision for $750,000.

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