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By Rodger Nichols
For The Sentinel 

City avoids suit in legal deal

 

October 4, 2017



Monday night’s meeting of the Goldendale City Council included three items under Council Business on the agenda. That included a vote in favor of an option agreement with Goodnoe Station Development for the former Mt. Adams nursing home facility. Under the terms of the agreement, Goodnoe will pay $100 for a six-month option to buy the facility for $100 at closing. Mayor Mike Canon said that would give Goodnoe time enough to do their due diligence. One council member, Guy Theraiult, opposed the measure.

Councilors also approved a $20,000 expenditure to build a sand shed to store the red rock the city uses to gravel the streets in the winter. Public Works Director Karl Enyeart told councilors that when it rains and then freezes, the red rock clumps together and does not work as well for sanding. A simple frame with sidewalls and a metal roof would help the situation, he said.

City Administrator Larry Bellamy also announced the preliminary 2018 budget, a requirement in the budget process. He noted no vote was required at this stage in the budget process, that there would be more meetings of the budget committee and public hearings before the budget can be adopted

Several residents of High Street spoke up during the public comment section, still upset with the city allowing a building permit to be issued for a Quonset hut to be used as a garage. They felt it lowered property values in the neighborhood. Steve Johnston, a former council member, said about last week’s meeting, “You had an attorney drive down here all the way from Yakima, which told me you knew you were in trouble...and what the lawyer did was baffle us all with BS.” He said he’d helped draft some of the ordinances that were concerned with local compatiblity and added, “You threw an entire neighborhood under the bus to save your own hide here.”

Dr. Lyle Ferch was equally as scathing. Citing portions of the garage building permit application that checked the box marked “frame,” Ferch said, “This turns out to be a legal document that is deceptively or erroneously filled out...We are frustrated...We don’t deserve this.”

The council heard them out but took no further action.

The meeting also contained an executive session dealing with union negotiations and potential litigation. Following the executive session, in open session councilors voted to approve an agreement with Columbia Riverkeeper concerning discharges from the sewage treatment plant into the Little Klickitat River. The eight-page agreement details steps the city has taken to reduce or eliminate the problems with the discharges, agrees that the city will send Columbia Riverkeeper copies of their monthly reports for three years and pay the Columbia Riverkeeper’s attorney $8,500 for legal work . In return, Columbia Riverkeeper agreed not to sue the city over the issue.

 

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