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Byline: Emily Heffter
Jul. 14--King County and Seattle both have agreed to buy time while they decide whether to purchase land on Harbor Island -- but King County is paying more for its time.
The two governments, concerned with a lack of competition in the waste-hauling industry, are looking for space on Harbor Island so they can ship garbage out of the county by rail.
King County will pay a private property owner $100,000 a month to hold a 12-acre lot if the council doesn't vote today to buy it for $8.5 million. Seattle has agreed to pay the Port of Seattle $160,000 to reserve an adjacent eight acres for three years.
Even though King County admittedly got a worse deal on the fee to hold the land, the property Seattle is looking at would not work for the county because it's too small, county solid-waste officials said. The site the county may buy is ideal, they said.
The money Seattle is paying will "lease" the Port property while the city decides whether to build a garbage-transportation site there. Seattle may never buy the site from the Port but may rent it long term.
Metropolitan King …