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Tacoma City Council Meeting - November 5, 2013

The meeting began with the dedication of the weekly moment of silence in remembrance of long-time City of Tacoma employee Donna Stewart, who passed away. Mayor Strickland read a statement calling Stewart the “heart and soul” of Public Works and Environmental Services, and saying that she will be greatly missed.



Resolution No. 38763 A resolution setting Tuesday, November 19, 2013, at approximately 5:30 p.m., as the date for a public hearing by the City Council regarding the surplus and proposed sale of 27,499 square feet of Tacoma Water property located at 7704 6th Avenue, to David A. Sizemore, in the amount of $22,500. [Maureen Barnes, Real Estate Officer; Linda McCrea, Superintendent, Tacoma Water]

Resolution No. 38764 A resolution setting Tuesday, November 19, 2013, at approximately 5:30 p.m., as the date for a public hearing by the City Council regarding the proposed sale of four former substation sites located at 5001 North Visscher Street, 1801 North Orchard Street, 4924 North 31st Street, and 1009 South 35th Street, owned by Tacoma Power, previously declared as surplus, to Reggie Brown for the cumulative amount of $317,000. [Maureen Barnes, Real Estate Officer; Ted Coates, Superintendent, Tacoma Power]



We heard from two commenters this week, both speaking on proposed marijuana regulations. A representative of the Washington Cannabis Association applauded the proposed substitute ordinance that would adopt the state Liquor Control Board definition of "parks." The second speaker returned to again raise this question of environmental impacts of marijuana businesses.




Resolution No. 38765 A resolution appointing Chris Beale to serve on the Planning Commission, representing Council District No. 5, to fill an unexpired term through June 30, 2015. [Doris Sorum, City Clerk; Elizabeth Pauli, City Attorney]

Councilmember Mello said he was pleased to appoint Mr. Beale who currently lives in District 5, but has lived in several Tacoma districts and has a solid background in the topics covered by the Commission.



Resolution No. 38766 A resolution awarding a contract to David Evans and Associates, Inc., in the amount of $267,854, sales tax not applicable, budgeted from the Solid Waste Fund, for engineering services for the Tacoma Landfill Site Traffic Circulation Improvements - Specification No. CT12-0001F. [Geoffrey Smyth, P.E., Science and Engineering Division Manager; Michael P. Slevin III, P.E., Director, Environmental Services]

Councilmember Boe recused himself from voting on this resolution to avoid the potential for the appearance of a conflict of interest.



Resolution No. 38767 A resolution authorizing the execution of an agreement with Moss Adams LLP, in the amount of $1,196,000, for component unit audits for the City’s Power, Water, Rail, Wastewater and Surface Water, and Solid Waste Management utilities, budgeted from said utilities, for the years 2013 through 2017 with the option to renew for three additional one-year terms. [Susan Ramirez, Assistant Director; Andy Cherullo, Director, Finance]

The resolution, which authorizes the five-year contract was adopted without any further information.

Resolution No. 38768 A resolution accepting the donation of three parcels of real property owned by DJL Investments, LLC, located in Northeast Tacoma, for ongoing routine maintenance of the stormwater facilities on the parcels. [Troy Stevens, Senior Real Estate Specialist; Michael P. Slevin III, P.E., Director, Environmental Services]

The two parcels being donated contain public stormwater facilities, which are operated by the City. DJL will donate them at no cost to the City. DJL has owned and operated the properties since the construction of the developments they serve; the donation will allow the City to maintain them in perpetuity, now that DJL has completed its obligations.

Resolution No. 38769 A resolution establishing four additional taxicab stands in the following locations: 6th Avenue and Anderson Street; 6th Avenue and Pine Street; 2403 6th Avenue; and Court C between South 21st and 23rd Streets. [Danielle Larson, Tax and License Division Manager; Andy Cherullo, Director, Finance]

Four new taxicab stands will be added, in addition to the five already existing in Tacoma. Three of the new stands will be located along 6th Avenue in response to safety concerns addressed by nearby businesses and Tacoma Police. The fourth will go in the UWT area, near the new Holiday Inn Express. Signs will be posted identifying the stands as places where cabs can safely wait for and pick up passengers.



Substitute Ordinance No. 28182 A substitute ordinance amending Title 13 of the Municipal Code, entitled “Land Use Regulatory Code”, to adopt interim regulations regarding the production, processing, and retail sale of recreational marijuana associated with Initiative 502. [Brian Boudet, Planning Division Manager; Peter Huffman, Interim Director, Planning and Development Services]

An amendment to the substitute ordinance was proposed, adding the word "retail" to a section of the new regulations in order to limit the 1,000 foot buffer reference in that section to apply to retail uses only, and making some changes to "or"s and "and"s. The changes weren't explained, but the amendment passed, and the ordinance was adopted.


Ordinance No. 28183 An ordinance amending Chapter 8.30 of the Municipal Code, relating to public nuisances, to identify nuisance activities related to recreational marijuana. [Lisa Wojtanowicz, Division Manager, Community Services Division; Tansy Hayward, Director, Neighborhood and Community Services]

A substitute ordinance was proposed and adopted, amending the nuisance code based on feedback from Council and citizens around the definition of "park" to be used in the code. The changes would drop City-specific elements of the definition, and simply adopt the state definition of "park" as it appears in statewide marijuana regulations.



Ordinance No. 28184 An ordinance amending Subtitle 6B of the Municipal Code, relating to licenses, by amending Section 6B.160.025; and repealing Chapter 6B.190 relating to Scrap Metal and Recyclable Material Dealers in its entirety; and amending Chapter 8.37 relating to Theft, by adding a new Section 8.37.115 Metal Businesses - “Unlawful Acts and Exceptions”, to comply with state law. [Danielle Larson, Tax and License Division Manager; Andy Cherullo, Director, Finance Department]

This ordinance proposes changes resulting from state passage of legislation creating statewide licensing requirements to regulate scrap metal businesses. The changes, which will be similar to Tacoma's existing regulations and will superced local jurisdictions, go into effect January 1. The new section will allow the City to prosecute crimes related to metal theft in municipal court. State level changes would make it a gross misdemeanor for dealers to buy scrap metal from anyone police have told them not to, or to purchase metal with identifying marks removed, and for anyone to remove identifying marks for the purpose of deceiving a scrap metal dealer. The state will also require all dealers to be licensed, and to sign up for a state scrap theft alert system. The ordinance gets its final reading next week.



  • Toastmasters International has named the City of Tacoma as a recipient of its Corporate Award in recognition of the City's sustained support of Toastmasters as a communication and leadership development tool for employees.
  • The City's Human Rights Division, along with others, was awarded a grant for programs to promote fair housing.
  • The City is now accepting applications for the 2014 round of community clean-ups. 16 of these clean-ups are held throughout Tacoma each year. The application gives neighborhoods the chance to apply to participate in the clean-up days, which provide chosen neighborhoods with a dumpster and other assistance in cleaning up single-family and duplex neighborhoods. For more information, and to apply, go to www.cityoftacoma.org/communitycleanup



Public Safety, Human Services, and Education Committee – Councilmember Woodards shared issues covered by the committee at recent meetings.

  • An update on the funding process for mental health and chemical dependency program.
  • Key findings from the 2012-2013 state gang grant performance report. The state-funded performance report evaluated Tacoma's gang violence reduction pilot program.
  • Report on the program redesign for Youthbuild Tacoma, including a discussion of the program's service delivery model's move from a case management model to a skill building curriculum.
  • Heard from TPD on voluntary compliance rates and outreach related to the West End Alcohol Impact Area.

At the next meeting the committee will hear a report from TPD on the jail services transition.

Councilmember Ibsen shared an update on soil remediation efforts in District 1. Soil replacement in area parks is underway, including the completion of replacement at Jane Clark Park and Titlow Park. Vassault is still in the planning stage; construction there will be undertaken in June.

Mayor Strickland reminded us that we still had time to vote.



For more on the items appearing on this week's agenda, see the Exit133 City Business Preview for the week.

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