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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, March 1, 2006
Don Krupp, Chief Administrative Officer, 360-786-5440
Bob Macleod, Thurston County Commission Chairman, 360-786-5440
Allen Miller, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney, 360-786-5574 X6252

State Supreme Court Will Hear Thurston County Land Use Case

​OLYMPIA – The State Supreme Court has agreed to hear Thurston County 's appeal of a land use ruling made last summer by the Western Washington Growth Management Hearings Board, which will expedite a decision on the case. The county is appealing the ruling that alleged that the county's growth management plans were out of compliance.  That ruling came after the organization Futurewise petitioned the Hearings Board saying that Thurston County 's urban growth areas were too large, that there needs to be more zoning in the one-unit-per-10 or one-unit-per-20-acre range and that certain denser growth areas in the unincorporated county needed to be reexamined.  

In the decision issued this week, Supreme Court Commissioner Geoffrey Crooks found that the issues were significant enough to bypass lower courts and go directly to the state's highest court.  Part of the ruling says; "Having reviewed that certificate, and the parties preliminary proceedings, I concur that the matter warrants review at a court level that can issue a precedential decision, and thus agree that the case can appropriately bypass Superior Court."

Thurston County Chief Administrative Officer Don Krupp says he's pleased with the decision.  "We believe that there are several issues that local governments across the state want some clarification on.  Those issues include- how much standing a statewide lobbying organization has over local planning efforts, what information is the most valid in making those land use decisions and other matters.  We are looking forward to the outcome of the State Supreme Court review."

Thurston County Commission Chairman Bob Macleod says he is also pleased with the expedited review by the Supreme Court.  "These planning issues are sometimes volatile for the folks who are directly impacted.  Whatever the eventual ruling from the Supreme Court, it will provide some certainty for Thurston County property owners and for Thurston County Government.  To be able to achieve that quickly will be a benefit for everyone involved."

The County hopes to have the State Supreme Court ruling by the end of the year.

County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3