Rural landowners rejoice! The state Supreme Court declined to review the earlier appellate decision tossing the hated King County Critical Areas Ordinance. Three of the four Republican council members--Reagan Dunn, Kathy Lambert and Jane Hauge--all praised the decision in a press release today. Their statements below the jump:
"It is clear that an overly restrictive, one-size-fits-all approach to land use regulation is bad policy," said Councilmember Reagan Dunn. "I opposed the legislation before, and I look forward to the opportunity to create new policy addressing critical areas that acknowledges unique situations."
"This ruling recognizes that our rural property owners are responsible stewards of their own land," said Councilmember Kathy Lambert, who represents Northeast King County, including the Snoqualmie Valley. "The state Supreme Court is to be commended for acknowledging that one size does not fit all properties when it comes to environmental issues. With this resolution, we now can get down to work on regulations that are flexible enough to protect the environment and also respect private property rights. I believe that people and salmon can survive together when the rights of all are respected and protected."
"I am pleased to see the Court sided with property owners on this issue," said Council Vice Chair Jane Hague, chair of the Council's Physical Environment Committee that oversees policy on growth management. "We can and must strike a balance between landowners' rights and protecting streams and wildlife. This decision moves us in that direction."