Burien can afford White Center annexation, council to be told
As Burien lawmakers take up a discussion on annexing White center and the rest of North Highline at Monday’s council meeting, they will be told it appears the city can afford it.
Background information from City Manager Mike Martin’s office states, “Initial, draft data seems to indicates the annexation is financially viable, largely because of a sales tax credit offered by the state as an incentive.”
The council will meet Monday, July 18 at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 400 S.W. 152nd St., in the first-floor council chambers.
Here is the background statement from the meeting packet:
BACKGROUND (Include prior Council action & discussion):
Annexation of the so-called “area Y” in the North Highline, including White Center, has a long history that council is well aware of. In short, Burien and Seattle in 2009 agreed to bi-furcate the North Highline Area into two areas; “X” in the south and “Y” in the north. Each city agreed it could advance annexations in adjacent areas without opposition until January 2012.
Burien successfully annexed area X in 2010 and that area is now part of Burien. In March 2011, Seattle declared it was not interested in advancing an annexation in area Y but adopted a resolution stating it might at a later date, perhaps February 2012. The resolution also allowed Burien to advance an annexation in area Y if it wished.
Staff is working with a private contractor, Berk and Associates, to study the financial viability of annexing area Y.
Initial, draft data seems to indicates the annexation is financially viable, largely because of a sales tax credit offered by the state as an incentive. The entire study will be available August 1 and presented to council at its meeting that evening. It will not be available for inclusion in the council packet. Staff intends to offer a high-level summary of the document at that meeting, and will return with the authors at your next council meeting, August 15th for a more detailed discussion.
As mentioned previously, while financial data is central to the question of annexation, staff understands it is not the exclusive one and that the policy question is more complex. In an effort to anticipate additional areas of interest, staff continues to solicit other lines of questioning council would like us to explore.
The annexation discussion will predictably be iterative and require information to be acquired as talks progress. The intent of this agenda item is simply to continue that discussion and ensure it progresses in as linear a fashion as possible.