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Archive for February 19th, 2020

Originally published in The Tacoma News Tribune, February 19, 1998

Bill would give Black Diamond permit it has been denied 3 times

By Leslie Brown
The News Tribune

Black Diamond development: Black Diamond Associates’ 1,600-home development would sit on 750 acres recently annexed by the city. The project is on hold because the city doesn’t have enough water. (Ronnie Ashlock/The News Tribune)

After failing at every level to obtain a water permit for 1,600 new homes in Black Diamond, developers finally have found a sympathetic and powerful ear in the Legislature.

A bill that would give the City of Black Diamond a “temporary” water permit—the very one the state Ecology Department denied developers three years ago passed the House 55-42 last week. It is now pending before the Senate.

Critics are decrying House Bill 2800, sponsored by Rep. Jack Cairnes (R-Covington) as special-interest legislation, bad water policy, and an end-run around a three-tiered administrative process that gave the developers ample review.

“This bill is not really intended to secure a (water) supply for the existing population of the area,” Ecology Department water resources manager Keith Phillips wrote to the House Agriculture and Ecology Committee. “Rather, it is intended to secure a supply for a large, new land development nearby.” (more…)

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