Quality of Life Over Density: Woodinville Considers Ignoring Growth Targets; Contracting with Kirkland Jail

Maintaining Woodinville's Quality of Life May Win The Day Over King County's Growth Targets

Woodinville doesn't want the growth that King County says it should take. According to an article in The Woodinville Weekly, the city council is considering ignoring the King County grow targets as a part of an update to their Comprehensive Plan. The council members acknowledge there will likely be financial impacts if they decide to maintain Woodinville's quality of life over King County's strong-armed growth targets but they are willing to investigate further.

Amid concerns about finding space in Woodinville to create more housing and job opportunities, several City Council members said the city should consider ignoring growth targets set by King County for the state-mandated Comprehensive Plan update.

“I don’t know how we pack another 1,800 homes into this city. There’s going to be growth goals set for us after that. What’s going to be left? There’s just not going to be anything left,” Councilmember Hank Stecker said. “We don’t have to meet these goals,” he added. “We’re supposed to, and there are some impacts to the city for not meeting them, but I just don’t see it.”

No one at the meeting last week knew exactly what the repercussions would be of disregarding growth targets, but at the request of Councilmember Susan Boundy-Sanders, City Manager Richard Leahy promised to find out.
— The Woodinville Weekly

The article further notes that Woodinville is interested in contracting with Kirkland for municipal court and jail services as a cost-saving measure.

In addition to working on the Comprehensive Plan, the council decided to begin negotiating with Kirkland for municipal court and jail services, which would mean Woodinville could end its current agreement for municipal court services (dealing with violations of Woodinville’s city code) with King County...

Leahy recommended that Woodinville end its agreement with King County and instead contract with Kirkland for court and jail services, which will save the city $110,000 per year and save 200 hours per year of police officer time, since officers wouldn’t have to transport prisoners between court and jail.
— The Woodinville Weekly