Tukwila City Council to consider moving RFA vote to August election

UPDATE: Council member Verna Seal, who sits on the steering committee, said Friday she wasn't informed of the city administration's recommendation to move the RFA election to August.

UPDATE: Council member Verna Seal, who sits on the steering committee, said Friday she wasn’t informed of the city administration’s recommendation to move the RFA election to August.

“It is my intention to try to complete our review and attempt to get this on the ballot in April,” Seal said Friday afternoon, after reading a Tukwila Reporter online story about the council meeting. “We do have a financial issue with our fire department and something needs to be done sooner rather than later.”

However, she might consider moving the election to August if the council Monday decides to move forward with the annexation review and the council needs more time to complete it.

ORIGINAL STORY

The Tukwila City Council will consider Monday night whether to move forward with the review of annexing the city to the Kent Fire Department Regional Fire Authority.

The meeting is at 7 p.m. in council chambers, City Hall, 6200 Southcenter Boulevard, Tukwila.

The council also will consider whether to complete the review in time for the April 2016 ballot or take more time for the review and place the issue on the August ballot.

The annexation is part of an extensive agenda for Monday’s council meeting, including awarding the contract to demolish boarded up motels and a smoke shop on Tukwila International Boulevard.

The council also will consider increases in water and sewer rates for commercial and industrial users and in surface-water rates for residential customers.

Mayor Jim Haggerton agrees with a steering committee recommendation to move forward with the fire authority review but he prefers an August election date, according to City of Tukwila staff report to the council.

While the committee and city had previously contemplated a Jan. 1, 2017, effective date, “it is clear that time is needed for Council to review

the work and recommendation of the Steering Committee and to engage in a robust public outreach effort prior to a final Council decision,” according to the staff report. The effective date would be Jan. 1, 2018.

There is no crisis that requires the council’s immediate action, according to the staff report, although it acknowledges the uncertainty the Tukwila Fire Department has faced.

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