EVERETT — Snohomish County closed on its first buyout of property in the Oso mudslide zone Dec. 30, through a federal grant program.
County officials are actively working with the owners of 20 additional properties impacted by the disaster, which killed 43 people on March 22, 2014, said Heather Kelly, the county official leading long-term slide-recovery efforts. Some of the pending transactions could close later this month. Another four properties owners have declined so far to participate in the voluntary program, Kelly said.
Federal grants and state money provide about $8 million for property acquisitions in the slide zone and nearby areas with increased flood risk. One hundred parcels are eligible. The total includes a $2 million increase announced in November and formally approved Tuesday by the County Council.