Bonney Lake Veterans Memorial one step closer
By BRIAN BECKLEY
Bonney Lake-Sumner Courier-Herald Reporter
November 11, 2011 · 11:43 AM
With Veterans Day fresh on everyone's mind, the city of Bonney Lake is moving a step closer to a permanent veterans memorial.
The administration and the Greater Bonney Lake Veterans Memorial Society have agreed to a memo of understanding reserving land in the city's downtown core for placement of a monument.
The land is located at the corner of state Route 410 and Main Street, across from the Justice Center. The intersection is set to be rebuilt as part of the mitigation efforts surrounding the construction of the Franciscan Medical Pavilion, located across the highway.
Once the mitigation is complete, estimated to be spring 2013, construction of the memorial can begin. But in the meantime, the city has agreed to place a construction sign at the site announcing it as the future home of the memorial, presently designed as small pedestrian area with an obelisk and a pair of flagpoles.
"It's a great first step," Greater Bonney Lake Veterans Memorial Committee Chairman David Colbeth said of the memo.
The committee was formed in 2007 and is dedicated to the construction of a memorial within Boney Lake city limits. In February 2009, the committee received 501(c)3 status and began raising money to build a memorial.
In January 2010, the group began to focus on working with the city to find a site, eventually choosing the triangle at the intersection as a preferred location in August.
At the Oct. 25 city council meeting, Colbeth spoke to the council about the push for a memorial, detailing the history of the committee and their efforts and asked the city to lock in a location so they could continue fundraising efforts.
"For five years, we've been working on it," he said. "We ask you and urge you to allow us to take the next steps."
Mayor Neil Johnson during the meeting said he did not realize the group had finalized a location and was waiting for that decision before moving forward while Councilmember Mark Hamilton, who earlier this year was spearheading efforts - now on the back burner - to rename a portion of Sumner Buckley Highway in honor of veterans said they need "permanency" for fundraising purposes.
The city responding with the memo of understanding, which was signed by Colbeth and is expected to be signed by the mayor before coming before the city council for approval.
Colbeth was back before the council Tuesday to thank them for taking quick action on the memo and suggested the mayor sign the letter on Veterans Day.
"It's great timing," he said.
For more information, visit the Greater Bonney Lake Veterans Memorial Committee.Contact Bonney Lake-Sumner Courier-Herald Reporter Brian Beckley at email@example.com or 360-825-2555 ext. 5058.