PIERCE COUNTY, Wash. -- Almost everyday for nearly three weeks, Jerry Gibbs and his supporters have been getting Pierce County voters to sign a referendum that could stop plans for a new $127 million county administration building.
Gibbs’ referendum was nearly stopped when Pierce County sued him earlier this month. That suit was later dropped after a 4-3 council vote, but now he’s being sued again by private citizens, listed as Leslie Young and Anthony Miller.
“This is a distraction, and I have to take attention away from our day-to-day activities, and now I have to go hire other attorneys and answer subpoenas,” said Gibbs.
The new suit asks Gibbs to stop gathering signatures and challenges his referendum, but it isn’t stopping him for getting voters like Ed Duncan on his side.
“We don’t need the Taj Mahal," said Duncan. "We just now need to get together and say enough is enough, and money just needs to grow on trees."
Jim Amet supports the county’s new building but signed the referendum because he still wants voters to decide, which is why Gibbs said he will continue gathering signature lawsuit or not.
“What I’m disturbed about is the repression of the vote; why are there powerful people trying to stop this from getting on the ballot?” he asked.
Young tells Q13 FOX via e-mail that she and Miller will refer all questions to their attorney. Calls to the attorney were not returned. Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy said in a statement the county had nothing to do with the most recent lawsuit, but said she applauded the citizens.
Supporters of the new county building have said time and time again, the plans will save the county money by consolidating services, an estimated $4 million a year.