Tacoma captures an island (of sorts) but its not what you think

Apr 2, 2024, 4:01 PM

Image: Downtown Tacoma and the port, can be seen from the LeMay-America's Car Museum in 2021....

Downtown Tacoma. (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

They had them surrounded, but now Tacoma swallowed them.

Manitou (MAN-i-too), a 37-acre area of Pierce County surrounded by Tacoma and University Place is now, legally part of the city.

Residents, property owners, and businesses must now uphold Tacoma’s laws, instead of those for Pierce County.

The area is located on the city’s southwest corner, near Lakewood Drive West and 66th Street West.

Other Tacoma news: Woman arrested after violent attacks and vehicle thefts in Tacoma

As one of the unincorporated “islands” in Pierce County, annexing the Manitou Area to the City of Tacoma was part of the State Growth Management Act (GMA). It is considered a high priority in regional, county and city planning policies.

On December 12, 2023, the Tacoma City Council set an annexation effective date of April 1, 2024. On that date, residents, property owners and businesses within the Manitou Area were welcomed into the City of Tacoma.

Key changes:
• Local Government Administration
• Police and Fire
• Taxes and Fees
• Utility Services and Fees
• Roads and Traffic Controls
• Land Use and Zoning
• Policies and Regulations

No changes:
• Schools
• Providers for Electricity, Natural Gas, Water
• Street Names

New services:
• Elected Representative (City Council District 5)
• Neighborhood Council Program (South Tacoma NC)
• Tacoma Public Library (South Tacoma Branch)
• Customer Support Center (TacomaFIRST 311)
• Grants and Other Programs

Business owners in the Manitou Area will become subject to the licensing, taxes, fees, and regulations governing businesses in the City of Tacoma. These fees will be paid to the City of Tacoma, not Pierce County.

Business license fees are anticipated to increase upon annexation, however, rates are tiered to protect smaller businesses. Tacoma also collects a business and occupation tax (B&O), Manitou Area businesses will be exempt from that tax until year four of the annexation. Sales tax will increase by about two-tenths of a percent upon annexation.

Crime news: Tacoma police make arrest in Point Defiance stabbing

Tacoma and Pierce County finalized an agreement in late 2021 for the Manitou Area’s annexation.

The City of Tacoma will now provide many services that Pierce County handled. These include business and pet licensing, permits and fees, solid waste management and parking regulation.

Bill Kaczaraba is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here. Follow Bill on X, formerly known as Twitter, here and email him here

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