September 26, 2012

Did Camas and Ridgefield Annexation of Property Render the Western Washington's Growth Management Hearings Board Decision Regarding the Lands Comprehensive Plan Designation Moot?


The Washington Supreme Court took up this question last month in oral arguments which can be seen here.  The case stems from a Division II Court of Appeals ruling in which the Court sua sponte, of its own volition, proclaimed that the Western Washington Growth Management Hearings Board ("Growth Board") still had jurisdiction over certain formerly designation agricultural properties.  This despite Camas and Ridgefield having entered into development agreements with property owners and having annexed their various properties into their respective jurisdictions.   

Here are the essential facts.  Clark County revisited it's Comprehensive Plan and urban growth areas ("UGAs") from 2004-2007.  Clark County de-designated several agriculture parcels and included them in various UGAs in the County in adopting the new Comprehensive Plan. Futurewise, Clark County Natural Resources Council and Karpinski ("Karpinski") filed an appeal of the Western Washington Growth Management Hearings Board ("Growth Board") seeking to invalidate the change to urban land.

But before the                                                 

On behalf of several clients in both Camas and Ridgefield, I did file several petitions to annex after the County approved it's update Comprehensive Plan.  And my friend Randy Printz at the Landerholm firm filed an annexation petition for the owners of the Green Mountain golf course in Camas.  During the annexation process both the cities of Ridgefield and Camas entered into development agreements  And for all

I appreciate Mr. Beatty, the attorney who argued on behalf of Futurewise calling my idea of annexing these properties before the Growth Board could issue a decision very clever.

A second question in the case is whether the Court of Appeals even had the authority to raise the issue when no party appealed the issue to the court.  As stated above, the Court issued the opinion sua sponte.

We look forward to the decision and will give an update at that time, so stay tuned.

For more information on this topic, please contact or call (888) 598-7070.


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