JASON RANTZ

Seattle council member hopes to cut through red tape with new measure

Sep 11, 2019, 5:49 AM | Updated: 5:50 am

Abel Pacheco...

Seattle City Council. (Seattle City Council)

(Seattle City Council)

Earlier in September, Seattle City Councilmember Abel Pacheco introduced legislation that would speed up the process for approving what he views as crucial projects for housing, climate change, and more.

The State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) often institutes lengthy environmental reviews for key projects, something that’s saw massive delays for projects like Mandatory Housing Affordability, the Burke-Gilman Trail, and Fort Lawton low-income housing.

Pacheco hopes that his proposed legislation — co-sponsored with Councilmember Mike O’Brien — will cut through some of that red tape.

Why Seattle CM Pacheco voted against Showbox protections

“What we had seen and experienced over the last few years, whether that’s through MHA, issues with the Burke-Gilman, Fort Lawton, or with the accessory dwelling unit backyard cottage legislation … some residents use the process — which was meant to protect the environment — to delay projects that quite frankly our city needs to be implementing in terms of addressing our affordable housing crisis,” Pacheco told KTTH’s Jason Rantz.

Most recently, Seattle City Council faced almost three-and-a-half years of delays for its backyard cottage legislation, a measure that was widely supported both by the council and the city.

Under Pacheco’s proposal, that timeline for future projects would be limited to 120 days, and up to 30 additional days if agreed upon by all parties involved. In turn, the goal is to address some of Seattle’s biggest problems without unnecessary delays.

“We’re just cutting some of the red tape through the bureaucratic process that sometimes people use to delay a project,” he described. “We’re hoping to be able to streamline that process in the way that’s most impactful for the growth that’s happening in our city.”

Opponents have voiced concern that the measure would cut out the ability of communities to provide crucial feedback on large-scale projects.

Should it pass, it could be implemented as early as October.

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
  • listen to jason rantzTune in to AM 770 KTTH weekdays at 3-7pm toThe Jason Rantz Show.

Jason Rantz Show

Jason Rantz

Photo: President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris join hands in the air as they view the ...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Before Joe Biden dropped, he threw Kamala Harris under the bus in BET interview

While President Joe Biden is dropping out of the race, we shouldn't forget: he threw Kamala Harris under the bus just days ago.

1 day ago

Photo: Government watchdog Accountable.US launches its "Expose Project 2025" campaign on the street...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Will Project 2025 destroy Seattle? The truth may shock you

Progressives are sounding the alarms over Project 2025, but will it destroy Seattle? It won't be pretty -- if you're a progressive.

2 days ago

Biden activists flyers...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle activists plan march pushing Joe Biden to drop out of race

A group of grassroots activists in Seattle are planning a Monday march hoping to pressure Joe Biden to drop out of the presidential race.

3 days ago

seattle officer auderer...

Jason Rantz

Seattle officer caught laughing after Kandula’s death has been fired

Seattle Police Department Office Dan Auderer has been fired by Interim Chief Sue Rahr.

5 days ago

A closeup of Annette and her facial injuries from a recent carjacking superimposed over a photo of ...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Homeless man brutally beat and carjacked Tacoma woman, victim says

An 18-year-old homeless man, with a record, is accused of a brutal carjacking and assault of an innocent woman in Tacoma.

6 days ago

Trump assassination attempt...

Jason Rantz

Rantz: Mukilteo Council member Trump’s ‘rhetoric caused one of his supporters to be killed’

Mukilteo council president Louis Harris said he has "no sympathy" for Donald Trump as he blames rhetoric for the assassination attempt.

7 days ago

Seattle council member hopes to cut through red tape with new measure