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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Spokane

Hoops Compete With Policy For Council’s Attention Building Moratorium, Water Service Ok’d As Officials Watch Game On TV

It wasn’t exactly a riveting meeting agenda for the Spokane City Council on Monday night.

Just ask Councilman Joel Crosby, who kept at least one eye on a TV showing the NCAA basketball championship game.

“It’s a good game,” Crosby said after the two-hour meeting, still watching the contest in the council chambers.

While UCLA was clinging to a narrow lead over Arkansas, council members voted unanimously to extend through Sept. 30 the building moratorium in the Indian Trail area.

Residents asked that the ban on new housing applications be kept in place while they complete their neighborhood specific plan. Increasing concerns about fast-paced growth in Indian Trail caused the council to grant the first sixth-month moratorium last fall.

As the Bruins forged ahead, the council voted 4-2 to ask for the Boundary Review Board’s approval to extend water service to 7.1 acres on the southwest corner of Geiger Boulevard and Sunset Highway.

Mayor Jack Geraghty and Councilman Chris Anderson voted against the plan, saying they wanted the city to review its utility extension policies.

Too often, Geraghty said, the city extends water or sewer service to an area only to have residents later fight being annexed to the city.

The city requires people asking for services to sign covenants guaranteeing they won’t fight annexation.

“The developer signs a covenant, but the owner fights annexation anyway,” Geraghty said.

Crosby argued that the city invested a lot of money in the West Plains area - where this proposal lies - and this was a step toward recouping that investment.

In the forum session after the regular meeting, Sandee Evarts criticized Crosby for his divided attention. The TV monitor was not visible to the audience.

“I was sitting out there wondering what Mr. Crosby’s so interested in,” Evarts said. “He’s watching a basketball game.

“We deserve your full attention.”

Councilman Orville Barnes admitted to watching a little of the game, but said, “I listened to what everybody had to say.”

As for Crosby, he said he was “one of those people who can do two things at once.”

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