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AUGUST 25, 1997


All should pay for street amenities

  There is quite a contrast between Tacoma and Woodinville's plans for street improvements. According to a recent news article, the City of Tacoma is paying for new sidewalks, street trees enclosed in decorative fencing, pleasant benches, trash containers and bike racks, plus art embedded in some sidewalks. Here in Woodinville proposed street development standards would have landowners pay for such amenities in exchange for obtaining building permits. Has Woodinville never heard of recent Supreme Court decisions that limit devlopment extractions to that needed to mitigate each devlopment's impacts? It is neither fair nor legal to willy nilly put the costs of public benefits on the shoulders of landowners.
   Assuming that landowners have paid their share of basic improvements, the embellishments desired for public comfort or image enhancement should be shared by all city taxpayers, not just those desiring a building permit.
   Maxine Keesling