Council OKs joining planning group

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WALLA WALLA — With no other viable alternative, City Council unanimously approved joining the Walla Walla Valley Metropolitan Planning Organization.

The new Metropolitan Planning Organization — which includes Walla Walla, College Place, Milton-Freewater and other parts of Walla Walla and Umatilla Counties — was required by federal officials after the 2010 Census determined that the combined areas of the proposed planning organization totaled more than 50,000 residents.

For months, representatives from local boards have been working out bylaws and other agreements.

If the city hadn’t approved joining the Metropolitan Planning Organization, it would have faced losing all federal transportation funding.

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