Cheney Free Press -

Staff Reporter 

Medical Lake approves first talks on JLUS


In a 5-1 vote, the Medical Lake City Council agreed to move forward with discussions regarding Spokane County’s Joint Land Use Study and its potential implementation in the city limits.

The vote was scheduled to take place at its meeting earlier this month, however final verification from the county was needed before it could proceed.

Councilwoman Brenda Redell voted against the motion.

All property in Medical Lake, according to the mutual agreements in the memorandum of understanding, is grandfathered in under JLUS. If a regulation in either Military Area One or Two causes an “adverse effect of property” in the city, then Medical Lake itself will determine if JLUS or the city’s regulations take precedence.

A modified version of MIA Three, which has more stringent regulations, would wrap around the city’s proposed urban growth area to the north. According to the memorandum, the one requirement for property owners in the city, which falls in MIA Two, would be to record with the county a notice that the property is located within the immediate area of Fairchild Air Force Base.

The City Council’s vote begins the discussion, which will take shape over the coming months.

“You have the option on whether to implement JLUS in Medical Lake,” City Administrator Doug Ross said.

Also at the meeting, the City Council voted to approve a Washington State Transportation Improvement Board fuel tax agreement.

Ross clarified that the agreement approves the sidewalk project on SR 902.

“The fuel tax funds the grant that we received,” he said. “The City Council approves the project with this document.”

Acceptance of the agreement doesn’t raise taxes in the city, but rather allows funds collected at a statewide level to be administered to the Medical Lake project.

The City Council also approved an early fireworks stand permit request. Last year, the city asked fireworks distributors to hand out pamphlets that reminded residents about safe fireworks usage on the Fourth of July.

“We’ll be doing paperwork like we did in the past,” Councilman Art Kulibert, acting as Mayor pro-tem, said. Ross said that if last year was any indication, distributing the information made a sizeable impact on the post-holiday cleanup.

Also at the meeting, new Medical Lake fireman John Greene was introduced to the City Council. Greene was appointed to the Fire Department at a previous meeting. He comes from the Airway Heights Fire Department, spending seven years with their crew, and has over 30 years in Emergency Medical Services training.

During the finance committee's report, councilwoman Shirley Maike said the second phase of new computer software for the city would be coming in May. The software is part of an effort to update billing practices at City Hall.

James Eik can be reached at

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