Costco Is Facing Bitter Legal Controversy in Its Home State
As much as you might love Costco, sometimes you hear news that makes you cringe. After a reported three-year fight, a group of Washington residents has filed a federal lawsuit involving the warehouse chain as their battle reaches an ominous new stage.
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Not Everyone Wants a Costco Close to Home
Seattle local NBC television affiliate, King5 News, reported Friday that residents of Lake Stevens, Washington—a town approximately 40 miles north of Costco's Seattle headquarters—are staunchly protesting the development of a new Costco location in their community.
A spokesperson for the group of residents indicated that residents of the area have railed against the plans for three years, filing lawsuits and packing city council meetings.
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The Cost of Costco
The opponents of Costco's plan to build a new location there have now filed a federal lawsuit, apparently against the Army Corps of Engineers, which the plaintiffs state has not gone through the appropriate process to develop 40 acres of natural wetlands (which are said to have already been covered in fill). "They didn't go through the proper steps," Lake Stevens resident Doug Turner reportedly said. "They rushed it."
Turner said he's a 32-year resident of the community and ran a grocery store there for years. Opponents like Turner are also concerned that the new Costco store is projected to increase vehicle traffic by 50% in parts of the community.
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Why Some People Want It
King5 News suggests that supporters of the new Costco store believe it will bring Lake Stevens 275 jobs, paying an average of around $24 an hour.
It's said community leaders also hope it will restore more than $140 million in annual grocery taxes the city has evidently stated it loses to surrounding towns.
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"Livable Lake Stevens"
Residents have organized, forming a Facebook group and host a website called "Livable Lake Stevens." Our news source said these neighbors believe this federal lawsuit is their last hope to keep Costco at bay.
A representative for Costco did not immediately respond to our request for comment.
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