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Buckley makes way for hearing examiner

With the potential for growth looming, the city of Buckley has opted to bring a hearing examiner on board.

City Administrator David Schmidt supports the plan and notes that Buckley is one of the last cities in the area to make the move.

“Previously, a hearing examiner would have been used sparingly,” Schmidt said, “but with the onset of the land development coming to this area, a hearing examiner is probably going to be needed with more and more regularity.”

A hearing examiner makes decisions on the city’s behalf with regard to land-use issues.

In Buckley’s case, the first matter going before the hearing examiner could be the VanSickle Landing Project along a five-block stretch of land on the north side of Ryan Road. A developer plans to divide nearly 61 acres of property into 262 units for single-family and town home residential structures.

A hearing examiner is “a good barometer to be certain that everything is being carried out in a legal, above board and equitable manner,” Schmidt said.

The going rate for officiating hearings is $150 an hour, which is paid by the project applicant, Schmidt added.

Reach John Leggett at jleggett@courierherald.com or 360-802-8207.

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