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Saturday, January 25, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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City To Consider Incorporation Plan 29th-Pittsburg Traffic Barrier Also On Council’s Agenda For Tonight

A move to blunt the impact of possible Spokane Valley incorporation and a 29th Avenue traffic barrier - two widely controversial topics - top tonight’s Spokane City Council agenda.

The council will hold a public hearing on a petition that could force removal of the traffic barrier at 29th and Pittsburg.

Council members also will consider asking a state panel to change the boundaries of a proposed Spokane Valley city.

Dal Vander Meer wants to circulate a petition that could put the 29th Avenue traffic barrier to a public vote.

The city installed the barrier in 1993 to keep drivers from turning left at the intersection or crossing 29th on Pittsburg.

Pittsburg neighbors applaud the barrier which, they say, makes their street less dangerous. But nearby residents claim the barrier shoved traffic onto their streets, merely relocating the problem.

City Attorney Jim Sloane told the council during last week’s briefing that the issue may not be subject to citizen initiative because it concerns an administrative action.

Only legislative actions fall under the initiative process because they set public policy, Sloane said. Administrative actions simply carry out existing policies.

Similar concerns recently were raised about a proposal to make changes to Riverfront Park’s IMAX Theatre, ice rink or Carrousel subject to a public vote. That petition failed for lack of valid signatures.

The council will vote tonight on whether the petition clearly states its goal of putting the barrier to a public vote.

Council members also will discuss whether to ask the state Boundary Review Board to change the boundaries of the incorporated city proposed for the Spokane Valley.

Boundaries for the proposed city butt against Spokane’s eastern limit at Havana Street. City officials want that boundary moved two miles to the east to Park Road.

The industrial area between Havana and Park, known as Yardley, includes the Spokane Interstate Fairgrounds as well as several gravel pits, railroad yards and other industrial property.

The city provides water and sewer services to much of Yardley.

Asking the board to reconsider boundaries could delay a planned May 16 vote on Valley incorporation to September.

Also tonight, the council will:

Set the city’s property tax levy.

The proposed rate drops 37 cents - 7.6 percent - from last year’s, from $4.80 per $1,000 of assessed value to $4.43.

City taxes make up about one-third of a resident’s property tax bill. Residents also pay property taxes to the county, fire districts and school disctricts.

Consider issuing $1.2 million in bonds to develop a geographic information system.

Merrick and Co., of Aurora, Colo., plans to create a digital map consisting of several layers.

The maps would computerize the locations of things such as stormwater drainage, property boundaries, buildings, zoning and sewers.

The maps would be used to plan under the state’s Growth Management and to develop the Stormwater Management Plan.

These bonds, known as councilmanic bonds - which can’t exceed 1.5 percent of the city’s total assessed valuation - don’t require a public vote and are paid back with city revenues.

These would be repaid over 10 years with money from the real estate excise tax, capital improvements fund and utility departments.

Total cost of the bonds including interest and fees is $1.6 million. ||||O||||||||||||||||| JUNK ||||||||||||||||||||| 950130 SP-COUNCIL

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STYLE: PUBLICATION STYLE: EDITION STYLE: PAGE STYLE: SECTION STYLE: HEADLINE STYLE: LEAD STYLE: REST STYLE: JUNK input file to flt1 is /asst/csi/0130/pass1/0007 Input filename: 0007 Output filename: /asst/csi/0130/pass3/0007 City taxes make up about one-third of a resident’s property tax bill. Residents also pay property taxes to the county, fire districts and school districts.

Consider issuing $1.2 million in bonds to develop a geographic information system.

Merrick and Co., of Aurora, Colo., plans to create a digital map consisting of several layers.

The maps would computerize the locations of such items as stormwater drainage, property boundaries, buildings, zoning and sewers.

The maps would be used for planning under the state’s Growth Management Act and to develop the Storm Water Management Plan.

These councilmanic bonds - which cannot exceed 1.5 percent of the city’s total assessed valuation - don’t require a public vote and are paid back with city revenues.

These bonds would be repaid over 10 years with money from the real estate excise tax, capital improvements fund and utility departments.

Total cost of the bonds, including interest and fees, would be $1.6 million.

xxxx MEETING Spokane City Council will meet tonight at 6 p.m. at City Hall.

Another sidebar ran with this story under the headline: City’s notification efforts criticized

Wordcount: 767
Tags: government

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