District plans public hearing on land transfer

Some residents of the Snoqualmie Valley School District want to move to a new district, without moving their homes. They, and the rest of the district, will get the chance to talk about their wishes at a public hearing, Dec. 1.

The request, a petition signed by Sammamish residents to change the boundaries of Lake Washington School District to include their properties, would allow those residents to send their children to the closer Lake Washington schools, without having to obtain an annual waiver. It would also diminish the size and therefore the potential revenue of the Snoqualmie Valley School District.

"It's an erosion of the tax base," District Superintendent Joel Aune said, during a discussion of the petition at the Snoqualmie Valley School Board's Nov. 17 meeting.

Aune said the district had to act on the petition by Jan. 9, but he proposed to finalize district action in December, before two non-returning board members complete their terms. He recommended a public hearing on Dec. 1, after which he might ask the board to select two members to begin negotiations with two members of the Lake Washington board. This would allow the board enough time to take a final vote on the petition at its Dec. 15 meeting.

No law requires the district to hold a public hearing on the issue, however, Aune recommended it, saying the district has historically gone "a little bit of that extra mile."

The proposed transfer of homes in Devereux, Trails at Camden Park, 26th Street, 27th Place, and a few homes on 244th Avenue Northeast, was submitted to the Puget Sound Education Service District, and validated on September 10.


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