Judge rules against Salish annexation

SEATTLE - A case the city of Snoqualmie is involved in to annex land from King County may go to the state Supreme Court following a ruling from King County Superior Court last week.

On Friday, Feb. 7, King County Superior Court Judge Michael Trickey upheld a ruling that the city of Snoqualmie could not annex land in the city's urban growth area with the petition method of annexation.

Under the petition method, residents who own more than 60 percent of the accessed valuation of a property outside of a city's limits can file for its annexations by the city.

The city had planned to use the method to annex some 40 acres of land outside of its city limits that Gateway Cascades, the company that owns the Salish Lodge and Spa, owns. The company had been looking into developing the property since 1996. The most recent expansion plans including a 250-room, 240,000-square-foot hotel with a conference center, restaurant, lounge and fitness center that would be built across State Route 202 from where the present lodge is now.

The state Supreme Court ruled last March, however, that the method was unconstitutional since the petition gives a disproportionate amount of influence to highly-valued properties.

The only other method of annexing land, by allowing all the property owners within the proposed annexed property to vote, couldn't help Gateway Cascades since it would be the only party voting. The city and Gateway Cascades claimed that the ruling should not apply to properties that have only one owner.

For the complete story, pick up a copy of this week's Valley Record

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