At this point there is little information available (as of
yet) but the word on the street is that three individuals
are protesting the Fitzgerald subarea LID decision before
the Central Puget Sound Growth Management Board.
The petition was received by the city of Bothell on May 2nd
2008. The three petitioners are named and the object of the
petition is to reverse the LID, reverting the entire subarea
to a required 65% forestation and a restricted 10% allowance
for impervious surfaces. Below is a letter drafted that was
sent to the growth management board.
(close this window when finished)
I apologize for not being able to recover a case number per
this petition. (No hearing date scheduled yet as of 5.26.08
per C.P.S.G.M.B. web site)
The petitioners Aagaard, Perry and Fisher vs. The City of
Bothell -- was received by the city May 2nd 2008.
Gleaning Thoughts In The Aftermath
This references Bothell's new LID (low impact development)
ordinance, created on March 4th 2008, which is being
challenged/protested to the Growth Management Board by three
individuals. This piece, below, results as conceptual, a
synopsis of events. I've moved my focus to that of concepts
in light of my sheer frustration from what has developed, a
long protracted debacle -- a train wreck if you will, that
is completely out of my control, that deeply affects our
lives and our future. Someone suggested that our situation
might make a candidate for a TV reality show.
The concept is a little piece of a city, a subarea that is
estimated by some to be approximately 150+ acres and by
others as much as 400+ acres. The area has not been
essentially land-developed since its annexation into the
city some 15+ years previous. It was at that time
designated a "growth reserve" so that, as explained, the
city planners would have time to -- and could -- work out
the best land use policy.
From within what is now the "Critical Species Habitat"
11 years ago a farmer and his neighbor applied for a rezone
hearing simply to inquire about the possibilities in land
use. This effort begins with a string of excuses, delays and
document loss by the city staff that brings no zoning
resolution for the owners. It drags on and on and takes the
land owners from one economy to the next until the city
decides to put the area into an experimental land use
designation called the "Critical Species Habitat" and to
also build a highway through their land.
The habitat idea is to force 65% of the land into an old
growth forest and to essentially disallow land development.
The premise is based on water flow from two tiny creeks and
the impact on a .9 mile shore of one side of a larger valley
long creek where salmon spawning is observed. Water flow
data that is promoted and agenda reliant by the influences
of an "environmental" group encompasses far too many
streams input, upstream -- from along the valley floor --
and this discovery by city council members makes the
"Critical Species Habitat" agenda tantamount to fraud.
At this point it is noted that the city declares the
"Critical Species Habitat" an experiment that will not be
tried anywhere else in the city. It is said to be completely
unique in the region, the state, a uniqueness that probably
extends further nationwide. The hope that an old growth
forest can be initiated, which will take "100 to 200 years"
to establish, is based on many assumptions and science that
There are many players in this drama including all the land
owners within the subarea who have not been offered any
direct monetary compensation what-so-ever for their land use
losses plus influences from without, influences that drive
the habitat agenda. A little history shows that for many -
many years the "environmental" agenda's influences have
driven and controlled efforts to drive away land developers
causing the city to acquire a well known reputation as a
city that is very difficult to negotiate with in terms of
land use -- albeit the fact that the city is one of eight
"core" growth cities in the region.
For the environmentalists part the age old reputation of the
greedy land developer is played hard upon, once deserving,
and a new generation of environmental "green" developers is
driven to be ignored and expelled by the old established
environmental powers that be.
As human nature prevails the now old established
environmental causes have become less than relevant in their
unwillingness to change with the times. Those who are left
to suffer are the citizens who have become "Critical Species
Habitat" indentured to the "City". It's a new experiment --
with a new kind of slavery.
Additional Relevant Facts:
* The city spent 17 months of hearings and work to establish
the current LID (low impact development) code for the
habitat that was ordinance established in March 2008. This
long effort culminated with detailed input from city staff,
citizens and professionals, principally from one individual,
long experienced planner-consultant, who claimed the
finished LID to be "robust" and the best he has ever seen to
* The city council voted to enact into the comprehensive
plan the right-of-way for a "Connector" arterial, a joint
county and city project that will help alleviate the large
and growing traffic burden that is now supported in the area
by old unimproved country roads. The Connector will pass
through the Critical Species Habitat, through properties and
homes that are now regulated by the LID. That Connector land
required is not develop-able by the land owners and within
reason -- given circumstances -- not sell-able either.
I am the "farmer" land owner in "The Critical Species
Habitat". We have been held in a non-ending limbo waiting
for the Connector project and now the economy to allow us to
move on with our retirement age lives. We have been the
responsible stewards on this land for nearly 40 years. Our
level of frustration with the city's actions and inaction
has literally left us without dreams and hopes. We are in
danger of losing our entire life's investment to increased
taxes. There is only one individual protesting the LID who
actually lives in the subarea. They have voiced their mind
in wanting to maintain "their" lifestyle. It is their hope
that the entire body of subarea land owners will be forced
to support their lifestyle even in lieu of the flawed data
that was promoted by their agenda.
Current efforts by the "environmental" agenda - to reverse
all the LID compromise work is - simply shameful.
THE PROBABLE GROWTH MANAGEMENT TIME-TABLE
(As provided by city staff)
The appeal was received by the Board on May 2, 2008. The
City and petitioners had a pre-hearing conference with the
Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board (Board)
on June 2 where the Board established time-lines and dates.
1. The Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board
(Board) set the schedule as follows:
Mid-July the petitioners provide their 'brief' to the board.
The brief is a written document containing the petitioner's
specific details and analysis detailing how and to what
degree the City was non-compliant with the GMA when the
Fitzgerald/LID regulations were adopted on March 4.
Early- August, the City provides its response brief to the
Late August additional briefs or clarifications are provided
to the Board.
Early September, the Board conducts its hearing on the
merits. Members of the public may attend these hearings.
2. The Consultant will not be included in the appeal
responses. The appeal is based upon the record as
established during the process.
3. The Board will issue its decision in late October
4. The decision should be issued in late October.
5. The Board will likely hear this petition.