An Everett attorney is using a spray paint, and the wall of his law office, to send a message to Snohomish County leaders after being told his property will be acquired to make room for a new county courthouse.
Royce Ferguson is one attorney in a row of law offices that are putting up a fight against the county's decision to demolish the buildings for a new 9-story, $162 million courthouse. They were sent a letter from an attorney's office in Seattle saying the county intends to make a written offer to purchase the property early in 2014.
Ferguson is angry with the decision and wrote:
County council wants to demolish this building and raise your taxes to pay for it! Is that necessary? Building for sale $1,750,000 (includes plans & dreams) No taxpayer borrowing!
It may look foolish, but I don't intend to be a victim, he says.
The message is written in white spray paint in clear view of county council offices. Ferguson bought the building 20 years ago, fulfilling a dream of owning his own firm within walking distance of the courthouse. Despite the loud and clear message, he knows it's a tough battle.
You can't beat city hall, he says. They have a bottomless pit of money as far as I'm concerned.
County council members authorized spending $200,000 to hire more lawyers to handle what could be an expensive eminent domain process.