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For the week of March 6 - 12, 2002


Six to run for Bellevue Council

Maple Ridge approved conditionally

Express Staff Writer

The city of Bellevue will have a full slate of alderman candidates for its April 1 election.

The nominating caucus started at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Bellevue City Hall, and within minutes, seven candidates had been nominated.

Those declaring for the three two-year seats are Jon Anderson, Jon Wilkes, Bob Heed and incumbent Parke Mitchell.

The next day, Heed withdrew his candidacy. He cited in a letter "circumstances beyond my control."

Those declaring for the one one-year seat are Judith Peak, Dick Fairfield and incumbent Tammy Schofield.

Veteran alderwomen Joanna Ehrmantraut and Vivian Ivie said they would not run again, opening up two two-year seats for newcomers.

The one one-year seat is a departure from regular Bellevue politics.

In last year’s election, George Moore was elected to a two-year term, but because of health reasons, he resigned his seat soon after the election.

In his place, Mayor John Barton and the city council appointed Tammy Schofield to take Moore’s place for a year, with the understanding that someone would be elected, not appointed, to finish Moore’s second year.

As a charter city, Bellevue doesn’t have councilmen, it has aldermen.

But since the city refers to its legislative body as a city council, Bellevue aldermen are often called councilmen.

Once the caucus was over at 7 p.m., the council began its regular meeting, where it approved the preliminary plat of Maple Ridge Subdivision.

The subdivision is located on the east side of Eighth Street, between Pine and Chestnut streets.

In the process of going through review by the Bellevue planning and zoning commission, the developers and the city realized Eighth Street did not follow the city’s easement.

In fact, the road bends to the east outside the city’s easement and into the proposed subdivision.

The discovery made several residents on the west side of the street upset because they would be losing some of their front yards.

The preliminary plat application for Maple Ridge first came before the council on Jan. 10, when it was tabled, so the city could study the problem.

At Thursday night’s meeting, Councilman Wayne Douthit took the lead on the city’s position about the location of the street.

"Putting the road in crooked was the city’s mistake, but as we have done in the past with situations like this, we’ve put the road in the center of the right of way," he said.

"If we’re fixing, we should put the road where it belongs."

When the P&Z reviewed the application, it recommended shifting the road 12 feet to the west, putting the road into the city right of way, but not in its center.

One of the affected residents, Wayne Inman, told the council Thursday night, "I don’t want to see the road moved at all."

Another affected homeowner, April Chizum, told the council that if the road were moved, it would mean moving two mature trees on the corner of Eighth and Chestnut streets.

She asked that if the developers and the affected homeowners agreed to leave the road where it is, why should the city want to move the street?

The answer came from Councilman Dale Shappee who said, "It’s the only fair thing to do."

Audience member Willy Huxford was of the same mind.

"I would ask the city council to make all property owners equal by putting the road into the right of way and giving the developer the full use of his property," he said.

Douthit said, "Any time you give one side more, you give the other side less."

He made the motion to approve the application with the condition that the street problem would be addressed at the next city council meeting.

The motion passed with four yeas. Two nays came from Shappee and Schofield.

Douthit said the reason he wanted to delay a decision about correcting Eighth Street is because he wanted to research cost.

The developers, Ken and Cindy Ward, have already said they would pay for a section of the street their subdivision would affect, between Walnut and Chestnut streets.

But Douthit is interested in rectifying the entire problem, which starts at Pine Street.


The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.