City Council May Vote To Move Forward On N. Highline Annexation Monday
A resolution calling for annexation by Burien of unincorporated North Highline awaits discussion and possible action by city council members at Monday night’s (Oct. 3) meeting.
It was drafted by city staff at the request of the council, which voted 4-3 Sept. 26 to have the proposal before them for consideration at this meeting.
“The best interests and general welfare of the City of Burien would be served by the annexation of [the] contiguous unincorporated territory,” the resolution reads in part.
“The City council hereby calls for an election to be held” in which voters in North Highline would decide if they want this area to become part of Burien.
“All the significant, material information on this subject has been presented and discussed,” City Manager Mike Martin said in his introduction to the discussion in Monday’s city council packet.
Martin “encourages the council to adopt the resolution that would advance the annexation of the North Highline Area.”
If city members approve the controversial resolution, either at Monday’s meeting or at a later date, staff will file a notice of intent to annex with the King County Boundary Review Board, and also notify the King County Council.
Should the Boundary Review Board accept the city’s proposal, the council would then set an election date. Under state law, only residents of the unincorporated area are allowed to vote on annexation.
Councilman Gerald Robison introduced the motion for an annexation resolution at the Sept. 26 meeting following the latest council discussion that included questions as well as comments from the public.
Mayor Joan McGilton, Councilwoman Rose Clark, and Councilman Gordon Shaw also supported the motion.
Deputy Mayor Brian Bennett, Councilman Jack Block Jr., and Councilwoman Lucy Krakowiak voted no.
Speculation on how the annexation vote could go ranges from 4-3 or even 5-2 to proceed, to 4-3 against the motion.
Krakowiak has repeatedly stated her opposition to annexing the remaining unincorporated area, after earlier opposing the annexation of what is now North Burien.
Bennett said Sept. 26 he hopes to see annexation take place but that it may be too soon. Block also said he would like an eventual annexation but that the process is being rushed. Block raised several issues he said need to be resolved first.
One point of concern, even for some council members who favor annexation, is the reliability of a sales tax credit, approved by the 2009 Legislature, which would transfer $5 million annually to Burien for 10 years if it annexes North Highline.
At that meeting, Martin told council members that even if they approve the annexation resolution now, they can back away from it, should circumstances change, at any time before residents of the unincorporated area vote on it.
The council packet (download PDF here) includes answers to these questions by Berk Consulting, which earlier this year prepared a financial analysis of the proposed annexation for the city, along with information about tax exempt property in North Highline and how human services are delivered there.
Here’s the text of the Resolution in its entirety (download PDF of Monday’s council packet here; Agenda Bill is p. 53, and Resolution is on p. 70):
CITY OF BURIEN, WASHINGTON
RESOLUTION NO. 323
A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF BURIEN, WASHINGTON, CALLING FOR THE ANNEXATION, BY ELECTION, OF CONTIGUOUS UNINCORPORATED TERRITORY TO THE CITY OF BURIEN LYING IN AN AREA EAST AND SOUTH OF THE CITY OF SEATTLE CORPORATE BOUNDARIES, THEN GENERALLY WEST OF A LINE FOLLOWING 12TH AVENUE S. (IF EXTENDED) BETWEEN S. CAMBRIDGE ST. AND S. 96TH ST., THEN SOUTH OF S. 96TH ST., BETWEEN 12TH AVENUE S. AND SR-99, THEN SOUTH ALONG SR-99 TO THE CITY OF TUKWILA CORPORATE BOUNDARIES, THEN SOUTH ALONG THE CITY OF TUKWILA CORPORATE BOUNDARIES TO THE CORPORATE BOUNDARIES OF THE CITY OF BURIEN, REFERENCED AS THE NORTH HIGHLINE ANNEXATION AREA.
WHEREAS, the Growth Management Act and the King County Countywide Planning Policies encourage transition of unincorporated urban and urbanizing areas within Potential Annexation Areas from county governance to city governance; and
WHEREAS, the City Council of the City of Burien, Washington, has determined that it would be in the best interest and general welfare of the City of Burien and the North Highline Unincorporated Area to annex certain property lying in an area north of existing City of Burien corporate boundary, referenced as the proposed “Burien Annexation” and shown on Exhibit “A” attached hereto and incorporated by reference as if fully set forth; and
WHEREAS, the proposed Burien Annexation area is within the City of Burien’s Potential Annexation Area adopted pursuant to Burien City Council Ordinance No. 455; and
WHEREAS, the City of Burien, City of Seattle, King County, Fire District 2 and Fire District 11 have completed mediation to resolve overlapping Potential Annexation Areas as called for in King County Countywide Planning Policy LU-32; and
WHEREAS, the proposed Burien Annexation is consistent with the Memorandum of Understanding for North Highline Annexation dated December 4, 2008; and
WHEREAS, the City Council is desirous to call for an election for this annexation;
NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF BURIEN, WASHINGTON, DOES RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1. Incorporation of Findings. The above findings are true and correct in all respects and are incorporated as though fully set forth herein.
Section 2. Additional Findings. The best interests and general welfare of the City of Burien would be served by the annexation of contiguous unincorporated territory lying in an area east and south of the City of Seattle corporate boundaries, then generally west of a line following 12th Avenue S. (if extended) between S. Cambridge St. and S. 96th St., then south of S. 96th St., between 12th Avenue S. and SR-99, then south along SR-99 to the City of Tukwila corporate boundaries, then south along the City of Tukwila corporate boundaries to the corporate boundaries of the City of Burien as shown on Exhibit “A” attached hereto and incorporated by reference as if fully set forth.
Section 3. Number of Voters. As nearly as can be determined the number of voters residing in the aforesaid territory is .
Section 4. Call for Election. The City Council hereby calls for an election to be held pursuant to Chapter 35A.14 RCW to submit to the voters of the aforesaid territory the proposal for annexation.
Section 5. Assessment and Taxation Rate. There shall also be submitted to the electorate of the territory sought to be annexed a proposition that all property located within the territory to be annexed shall, upon annexation, be assessed and taxed at the same rate and on the same basis as property located within the City of Burien is assessed and taxed to pay for all or any portion of the outstanding indebtedness of the City of Burien, which indebtedness has been approved by the voters, contracted for, or incurred prior to or existing at the date of annexation.
Section 6. Cost of Election. The cost of said annexation election shall be paid by the City of Burien.
Section 7. Certified Copy to be Filed. The City Clerk shall file a certified copy of this Resolution with the Board of County Commissioners of King County, Washington and with the King County Boundary Review Board.
Section 8. Notice of Intention to be Filed. The City Clerk shall also file with the King County Boundary Review Board a Notice of Intention hereof as required by RCW 36.93.090 et seq.
ADOPTED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF BURIEN, WASHINGTON, AT A REGULAR MEETING THEREOF THIS ____ DAY OF _____, 2011.
CITY OF BURIEN
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