Posted: Tuesday, 07 August 2012 6:27AM
Bellingham Mayor Defending Negotiations With Costco
BELLINGHAM, Wash. -- The mayor of Bellingham says she fears that talks over moving Costco are being “negotiated in the newspaper.”
Mayor Kelli Linville is defending the city's decision to work with Costco to keep them in Bellingham.
She says negotiations between with Costco are just in the beginning stages, and she says they're carefully balancing any economic incentives with the City's environmental goals.
But she says the City has gotten some bad deals by revealing details too soon.
Linville says one such mistake was announcing what the city was going to pay for Chuckanut Ridge before negotiating on it.
She adds that traffic improvements in the Bakerview, Interstate 5 area were already in the works, and says the area is likely to be developed whether or not Costco decides to relocate there.
Linville says the City will be fiscally prudent and open in deals it makes with Costco or any other business.
Any plans for development in the area would still have to go through legal approval as well as a public hearing.