Everett City Council Votes To Condemn, Bulldoze And Turn Waits Motel Site Into Housing – Current Residents To Receive Relocation Help

August 2, 2023

Everett Government

Waits Motel

The Waits Motel at 1301 Lombard in Everett, Washington

Tonight the Everett City Council had a public hearing and vote on an ordinance that would declare the Waits Motel at 1301 Lombard a “blight on the surrounding neighborhood” and authorize the Mayor to have the Waits Motel condemned and bulldozed. There had been two prior council meetings and you can see our earlier story and supporting documents here.

After more than an hour of public testimony with the majority of people asking the City Council in Everett, Washington to save the Waits Motel the decision was made to go ahead and approve the resolution calling for the condemnation and bulldozing of the property to be replaced with housing. Both Mayor Cassie Franklin and Everett City Council Vice President Judy Tuohy were absent from the meeting. The vote came out as follows.

Councilmember Rhyne – Yes
Councilmember Schwab – Yes
Councilmember Fosse – Yes
Councilmember Zarlingo – Yes
Councilmember Vogeli – No
Councilmember Stonecipher – Yes
At the start of the city council meeting tonight the City Attorney asked for an executive session with the council members and a possible action prior to any vote on the ordinance to condemn the Waits Motel. Originally announced at 15 minutes the executive session lasted 35 and there was no announcement and the council went directly to discussion and the vote.

In comments prior to the vote Councilmember Vogeli related that we all know that people shouldn’t be living there long term and given the relocation services that would be provided, could make the living situation better for those living there now. She also said she wants to continue to see the magic she’s seen at the Wait’s to continue.

Councilmember Fosse said housing is a human right and she had seen first hand how relocation assistance worked in Baker Heights and there are lessons learned from that relocation to be applied here. Residents need an actual kitchen with a refrigerator and that relocation and follow-up is a priority for her and the entire council with everybody from the Waits housed and not put into the streets.

Councilmember Schwab said he most appreciated the stories from the people and found them impactful and is confident good locations will be found for all of the residents.

Councilmember Zarlingo said the Council asked serious questions and looked at what is best for the entire city. He also mentioned that there was a real dedication to relocation and that financially the people would be taken care of for 42 months.

Councilmember Rhyne spoke of what a blessing it was that the manager, Emily came into the picture when she did both for the owner of the Waits as well as the people of Everett, Washington.

Council President Stonecipher said the action ultimately will be a reversal of the property which will be slated for housing and that the people currently living there will be made whole over the next four years.

No official word on what was said during the executive session but we hope to get more details on the specific relocation plan and timeline for the residents from the City tomorrow.

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My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring news and events in Everett, Washington. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live, work, and play in Everett.

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