August 8, 2017
The Burien City Council voted on Monday, August 7, to place Burien Initiative 1 on the November 7, 2017 general election ballot. City of Burien staff are following procedures to place the initiative on the ballot.
August 2, 2017
On Monday, July 31, 2017, Burien City Council met to discuss Burien Initiative No. 1, which would repeal Burien’s Immigration Status Ordinance (Ordinance No. 651).
Initiative No. 1 was certified by King County Elections on July 21, 2017. According to state law, the City is required to take one of two actions; either adopt the legislation as set forth in the initiative petition, or adopt a resolution requesting that it be placed on the general election ballot for November 7, 2017. The option to do nothing was considered by staff, however was not forwarded based on statutory guidance and the potential legal exposure to the City.
State law identifies the schedule and date by which the second option above must be taken, however there is a conflict in the governing statutes. The law that sets forth dates for the conduct of primaries and passage of resolutions placing measures on the general election ballot states that resolutions must be submitted to County Elections by August 1. However, in another area of the law, it states that the resolution must be submitted to County Elections within 90 days of the general election, or no earlier than August 7.
In order to remove all doubt that the City acted in a timely manner, staff recommended options for the Council to consider; including passage of a resolution on July 31, 2017 to place Initiative 1 on the general election ballot. While King County Elections has indicated it will accept Resolution 395 if submitted on August 8, 2017, the City is still exposed to legal risk and a potential legal challenge from a third party.
If the Council does not take action on Initiative No. 1, a taxpayer may file a lawsuit against the City in superior court to obtain an order that an "election will take place for the purpose of voting upon the proposed ordinance if the court finds the petition to be sufficient." On July 21, 2017, King County Elections certified the petition as having sufficient signatures.
A motion remains open on the Council floor to approve Resolution 395 at the August 7 Council Meeting. At this time, City staff are preparing for the meeting and providing additional information to Council for consideration prior to the August 7 Council meeting.
July 24, 2017
The City of Burien issued a news release regarding the scheduling of a special meeting and call for volunteers to serve on Pros and Cons Committees.
Read the press release.
July 21, 2017
Today, King County Elections completed verification of the signatures submitted to their office for the City of Burien Initiative No. 1 (repeal of Ordinance 651).
Of the 4,953 signatures that were compared against those on file with the County, 3,648 were determined to be registered voters. Since that number met the requirement of 3,643, King County Elections determined that the petition is sufficient.
The Burien City Council is required to take one of the following next steps: (1) adopt the proposed ordinance as set forth in the petition (which repeals Ordinance no. 651) or (2) pass a resolution submitting the measure to the County Elections office and asking that it be placed on the November 7, 2017 ballot. Because the second option must be completed by August 1, 2017, a special meeting will be scheduled to take place between July 24 and July 31, 2017.