County listens on hospital land plan

Five members of the Metropolitan King County Council listened for nearly three hours last Thursday, March 20, as residents of the Snoqualmie Valley and other Eastside communities shared their thoughts on proposed changes to the county’s comprehensive plan.

County Council members Larry Gossett, Jane Hague, Larry Phillips and Reagan Dunn joined District 3 councilwoman Kathy Lambert, who represents the Valley. The group included members of the council’s Growth Management and Natural Resources Committee, which will make its recommendation on the comprehensive plan update this summer.

“We will be the ones making some of the final decisions,” said Lambert, who asked the many residents who signed up to avoid beating around the bush.

“What you say is going to be very important,” she said. “Please be very direct. Say ‘this is what we need changed,’ so we can make those changes. This is your community, and we want to be doing the things that you need to keep this community what it is.”

Officials speak

Most Valley speakers centered on the Snoqualmie Valley Hospital, which is being required to set aside four acres of land from development for every acre it wants to develop on its new campus at the Snoqualmie Parkway freeway interchange. The requirements are being proposed as a pilot program under the comprehensive plan changes.

Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson spoke first, challenging the pilot program of “Transfer of Development Rights,” or TDR.

As mayor, “you can distill my responsibility down to three fundamental things that I have a sworn duty to uphold, and that is the health, safety and welfare

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