The annexation may not be final, but Tuesday morning Yakima County commissioners voted to transfer permitting authority for the Sierra Vista Middle School project, which will be located off of Washout Road, to the City of Sunnyside.
Mark Kunkler, assistant city manager and city attorney, explained that Sunnyside has an interlocal agreement with Yakima County regarding permitting and property development. He noted that although the annexation is technically not complete, it is in the process. By transferring permitting authority to the city, Yakima County forfeits its jurisdiction over the project.
Kunkler said the Sunnyside School District made the request to the county to transfer permitting authority to the city and the city joined in the effort to make the change.
Kunkler explained that the transfer is important because although the annexation is not complete it gives the city jurisdiction over the school project. This means the city will be in charge of building code administration for the project and will be able to assess and collect permit fees for the building of the new school. Without the transfer, both of those responsibilities would belong to the county.