County Council remembers Nisqually tribal member with proclamation

The Pierce County Council, at its March 2 meeting, authorized the potential acquisition of floodplain property as part of a program to purchase flood-prone properties from willing sellers.

The estimated cost to acquire the 3.15 acres in Orting is $308,000, with funding coming from the Pierce County Flood Control Zone District, according to Resolution No. R2021-7, as passed unanimously by the council.

“I think this is a wise and prudent investment into flood-risk property,” Councilmember Dave Morell said.

The council unanimously passed an ordinance cancelling certain uncollectable property and mobile home taxes for 2020 in the amount of nearly $66,000. Deputy Director of Finance Wolfgang Opitz explained this low amount of money that can’t be collected is typical of a recession.

Again, by a 7-0 vote, the council passed an ordinance vacating the 77th Avenue East right-of-way in the Graham area.

The council approved two appointments to citizen boards, including Tono Sablan to the Parkland-Spanaway-Midland Land Use Advisory Commission, and Thomas Utterback to the Pierce County Parks and Recreation Citizens Advisory Board.

Finally, the council passed a joint proclamation — along with the county executive — remembering Billy Frank Jr. for his work protecting tribal fishing rights and salmon ecosystems throughout the Puget Sound. Nisqually tribal member Frank, who passed away in 2014, led a grassroots campaign for fishing rights on the tribe’s Nisqually River in the 1960s and 1970s.

The proclamation declares March 9, 2021 — Frank’s birthday — as “Billy Frank, Jr. Day” in Pierce County.


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