Cedar County numbers come in
After a three-month wait to learn the number of valid signatures to create a Cedar County, proponents now know that more work needs to be done to turn eastern King County into Cedar County.
Based on the count from King County Records and elections, 6,418 additional voters need to sign the "Petition to Create A New County."
"For the first time, we know where we stand. Our required number of signatures is the majority of those who voted in the last general election. That number is 22,517. We haven't been able to get that number until now," said Lois Gustafson, who chairs the Cedar County Committee.
King County Elections considered 16,098 signatures valid. Almost one-third of the 23,798 signatures counted were invalid.
"This is a unique form of election, voting by petition, and it is open-ended. We can continue to gather signatures and have them validated at a later date to qualify," Gustafson said.
The committee will speed up the effort of gathering signatures over the summer with a series of public meetings and with more volunteers active with petitions, Gustafson said.
Boundary adjustments, necessary for validation purposes, altered the western boundary in two areas. One triangle-shaped area is now out of the new county. It lies west of 148th Ave SE from SE 80th St to SE 256th St.
"We are drawing up petitions for that area to be included in Cedar County and will work closely with the residents," Gustafson said.
On the other hand, an area which was left out of the legal description but included on the map of the intended county is now in. Gustafson said the slanted line cut through properties, making it impossible for records and elections to determine who was in and who was out.
"Anyone with concerns about the boundary adjustments should get in touch with the committee at (206) 836-0272. We will do our best to accommodate any and all concerns, even accepting written requests for signature removal," Gustafson said.