Enumclaw City Council votes down Welcome Center

After many more than a decade of starts and stops, the Enumclaw Welcome Center was finally put to rest on a four-three vote at the City Council meeting last night, July 29.

The first crack in the support for the center showed up at the July 15 council meeting when Hoke Overland made a motion to end the project. His motion died with only his vote in support, but it was the beginning of the end.

Councilman Chance La Fleur spoke first and laid out his opposition to the project in clear terms calling the Welcome Center a "luxury" when the city has many other matters pending, including hiring more police.

La Fleur also said funding the project meant draining the city's Fund 180 of most of the money. There is about $1.5 million in Fund 180 and the 7,000 square foot center would have cost the city about $1.3 million.

Councilman Morgan Irwin spoke in support of the project stating it would be an investment in the future and a "legacy project" that could add jobs if the forest service headquarters were located in the building.

Voting against the the motion to fund the project was La Fleur, Overland, Jim Hogan and Mike Sando. Voting for was Darrel Dickson, Irwin, and Juanita Carstens.




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