Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Saturday, March 18, 2006

"Appeals target corridor shopping center, Wal-Mart"

AKA, "Moonbats attempt to stop all growth"

So I guess the Moscow City Council IS that fanatical. The war is on. Don't you love how outside interests (union lawyers, the Moscow City Council) are trying to control our economic growth and development? Time to get mad Pullman.

A few dozen left-wing activists in both towns are setting the agenda. So instead of cooperation, we now have controversy. Instead of quality of life, we now have division. And all because a bunch of snobby eggheads read a book by Al Norman, or surfed the Wal-Mart Watch web site, or watched a union-funded propaganda movie, or attended a lecture on "smart growth". They won't be happy until they have chased every off every new business thinking of moving to the Palouse.

From today's Lewiston Tribune:

of the Tribune

COLFAX -- Two retail development appeals were filed here Friday, one aimed at a proposed shopping center adjacent to Moscow, and the second targeting construction of a Wal-Mart Supercenter in Pullman.

The city of Moscow filed an appeal with the Whitman County Commission challenging county planner Mark Bordsen's decision approving a shopping center on the Idaho-Washington border.

Meanwhile, members of a group called the Pullman Alliance for Responsible Development (PARD) filed an appeal in Whitman County Superior Court requesting reversal of a city decision allowing a Wal-Mart Supercenter on Bishop Boulevard.

Shopping center appeal:

Moscow city supervisor Gary Riedner said Friday the city's appeal of a proposed shopping center just over the border in Whitman County is not an attempt to stop the development. He said the appeal, however, addresses serious environmental concerns that demand attention.

Mark Bordsen, planning director for Whitman County, declined comment on the appeal. But he said earlier that he stands by his determination that the proposed shopping center, possibly anchored by a Lowe's home improvement center and two other big-box stores, poses no significant environmental threat.

The appeal, filed for Moscow by Spokane attorney Peter G. Scott, is eight pages long and addresses 10 areas that, according to the document, lack thorough analysis. The areas include transportation, air quality, odor [odor?], water resources, wetlands, water quality, construction impacts, storm water, land use, and emergency services.

"In sum, the county did not undertake the analysis required to make a determination that the proposed commercial development can be mitigated so that it will not have significant adverse environmental impacts," the appeal reads.

The document echoes a letter of concern mailed to Whitman County officials recently by Moscow Mayor Nancy Chaney. The letter was one of 11 sent by various people and entities expressing concerns. Three Pullman officials were among those who sent letters. Moscow, however, was the only entity to follow through with an appeal by Friday's 2:30 p.m. deadline.

Moscow's appeal is filed under authority of Washington's State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA).

Bordsen initially issued a mitigated determination of non-significance for the shopping center proposal. The only conditions he placed on construction addressed the need for a traffic study prior to business occupancy, and wetland mitigations if necessary.

The shopping center is being proposed by Hawkins Companies, a Boise-based development company. According to a conceptual drawing, the complex would be built on 110 acres adjacent to Highway 270 and provide more than 600,000 square feet of retail store space.

A hearing date for the Moscow appeal before the three Whitman County commissioners had not been set as of Friday.

Wal-Mart appeal:

PARD members made good on their announcement earlier in the week by filing a 20-page appeal against the city of Pullman, S&W Land Company and the Spokane-based CLC Associates development company.

"The super center will have a myriad of negative impacts upon the surrounding community and residents that have not been addressed or mitigated by Wal-Mart or the City of Pullman," the appeal reads.

The document lists more than 20 purported errors or failures allegedly made by a hearing examiner who heard more than three days of testimony on an earlier PARD appeal. The examiner, in essence [in essence?], ruled against PARD by leaving the Wal-Mart development avenue open as long as a few traffic conditions and other minor considerations were addressed.

"Addressing PARD's issues (or failing to address them) in this way is inconsistent with the above standards and PARD's constitutional and due process right to a meaningful hearing," the appeal contends.

Among other things, PARD requests that the court issue orders that would reverse the SEPA determination of non-significance, require preparation of an environmental impact statement and void the site plan for the Wal-Mart project. The document also request that attorney fees and costs be awarded to PARD. [I pray the city asks for the same thing to cover taxpayer expenses for this worthless boondoggle]
It's appropriate these appeals were filed on the same day, as PARD and the Moscow City Council are ideological birds of a feather. It's also appropriate that both appeals were filed in Colfax. Colfax is where both of these little socialist Napoleons will meet their Waterloo.


April E. Coggins said...

This should be fun. Is Moscow filing as a citizen, an entity or some other status? Does Moscow require that Washington State comply to Idaho law or is Moscow complaining that Washington law is not restrive enough? We have here a case of the pig farmer complaining that you should do as I say, not as I do.

Ray Lindquist said...

Meanwhile, members of a group called the Pullman Alliance for Ir-Responsible Development (PAIRRD) filed an appeal...

These folks are so irresponsible it is not funny anymore. The calls for them to drop thier appeals has fell on deaf ears.