The city of Sammamish has taken its first step toward throwing its hat in the ring for Klahanie if annexation to Issaquah fails.
Sammamish City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to direct the City Manager to study the unincorporated community as a Planned Annexation Area in the upcoming Comprehensive Plan rewrite.
The council previously passed a motion in June supporting the community’s theoretical annexation into Sammamish. Mayor Tom Odell, Deputy Mayor Ramiro Valderrama-Aramayo and Councilman Don Gerend pitched the merits of a Sammamish annexation at a mid-September county Boundary Review Board meeting. The Board must make a final decision by Nov. 7 on whether an Issaquah annexation will go to ballot in February.
But Tuesday’s resolution was the city’s first formal step toward becoming an option for Klahanie.
“We’re doing this, frankly, to cover our bases in a sense,” Tom Odell said.
If the issue was forwarded to the Growth Management Planning Council, Odell said, Sammamish could be seriously considered as an alternative.
“We can get a request on record,” he said. “If for some reason Issaquah annexation fails, that opens up a new discussion.”
Annexation is the process by which city governments bring neighboring communities into their borders. A municipality will identify an unincorporated area as a possible annex. If the city initiates the annexation process, the residents of the area vote to join up or stay out.
Issaquah identified Klahanie as a Potential Annexation Area in 1995, before the city of Sammamish existed. In 2002, Issaquah agreed to remove Klahanie from its comprehensive plan, but changed its mind later in the year.
In 2005, Klahanie residents approved a measure to join Issaquah. But they rejected a measure to take on a share of Issaquah’s debt, prompting the city council to exercise its authority to deny annexation.
In other council news, a resolution to endorse the Lake Washington School District’s bond and levy funding measures for the February election — totaling more than $1 billion — passed six to one.
A motion to approve nearly $2 million in funding for the second phase of Sammamish Landing was postponed. The proposed phase two improvements would have included parking, disability-compliant access to the park and permanent restrooms.