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Tacoma City Council Meeting - October 1, 2013
Resolution No. 38742 A resolution setting Tuesday, October 15, 2013, at approximately 5:30 p.m., as the date for a public hearing by the City Council on the proposed sale of 2,115 square feet of real property within Tacoma Rail Mountain Division railroad right-of-way to the Washington State Department of Transportation to accommodate the Interstate 5, M Street to Portland Avenue, HOV Project. [Dylan Harrison, Real Estate Officer; Kurtis Kingsolver, P.E., Interim Director, Public Works]
Resolution No. 38743 A resolution setting Tuesday, October 22, 2013, at approximately 5:30 p.m., as the date for a public hearing by the City Council on the proposed interim land use regulations concerning the production, processing, and retail sale of recreational marijuana. [Brian Boudet, Planning Division Manager; Peter Huffman, Interim Director, Planning and Development Services]
Resolution No. 38744 A resolution authorizing the execution of an Interlocal Agreement with the City of University Place, in the amount of $389,500 in grant funding, and a required match of $60,750, for a total of $450,250, for the design of the South 56th Street and Cirque Drive corridor improvements. [Thomas L. Rutherford, Project Manager; Kurtis Kingsolver, P.E., Interim Director, Public Works]
Resolution No. 38745 A resolution authorizing the execution of Amendment No. 1 to the Interlocal Agreement with Pierce Transit, in the amount of $49,576.58, depositing said sum into the Street Fund, for additional equipment installation services for the Transit Signal Priority Project. [Chris Larson, P.E., Engineering Division Manager; Kurtis Kingsolver, P.E., Interim Director, Public Works]
All four consent agenda resolutions were adopted without Council comment.
PROCLAMATIONS, RECOGNITIONS, PRESENTATIONS, and ANNOUNCEMENTS
Mayor Strickland read recognitions of three Disability Advocate of the Year Award recipients; and Tucci and Sons Inc. for their efforts on the Pacific Avenue Streetscape Project to ensure access for individuals with disabilities.
The Mayor also read a recognition of Thomas McCarthy as the Third Quarter Human Rights Champion Award recipient.
All five commenters spoke on the resolution regarding Council support for Tacoma's Proposition 1 - four spoke in favor, one against. Speakers in favor of Prop 1 referenced Labor support for the measure; concerns over safety for the elderly, people with disabilities, and children; the importance of good roads to Tacoma businesses and residents; and their view that $5 a month is a good deal for improved roads. Tom Pierson of the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber spoke against Council support for Prop 1, citing what he called a lack of public process; a lack of prioritization; the burden on businesses and fixed-income residents; and his belief that not all possible avenues had been explored.
Resolution No. 38746 A resolution reappointing Lillian Hunter to the Tacoma Public Library Board of Trustees for a five-year term beginning October 5, 2013 through October 5, 2018. [Doris Sorum, City Clerk; Elizabeth Pauli, City Attorney]
The appointment carried.
Resolution No. 38747 A resolution awarding a contract to Fehr & Peers, in the amount of $500,000, sales tax not applicable, budgeted from the General Fund, for consultant services for the preparation of the City’s Transportation Master Plan - Specification No. PW13-0377F. [Chris Larson, P.E., Engineering Division Manager; Kurtis Kingsolver, P.E., Interim Director, Public Works].
Council members Boe and Mello spoke to the importance of a transportation plan to the planning, prioritization, and coordination of transportation projects in Tacoma.
Resolution No. 38748 A resolution expressing support for the passage of City of Tacoma Proposition No. 1, to be held at the Tuesday, November 5, 2013 election which reads as follows:
CITY OF TACOMA SPECIAL ELECTION - PROPOSITION NO. 1
2% UTILITY COMPANY EARNINGS TAX FOR TACOMA STREET IMPROVEMENTS
The City Council of the City of Tacoma adopted Substitute Resolution No. 38700 concerning an additional 2% earnings tax on utility companies for streets. If passed, Proposition No. 1 would authorize the City to levy an additional 2% earnings tax on natural gas, electric, and phone companies for the sole purpose of funding basic maintenance and safety upgrades City-wide, for roads, arterials, and bridges; permanent pothole repairs; pedestrian safety improvement to crosswalks near schools, sidewalks and intersections; repaving neighborhood streets; and improved signal timing, all as provided in Substitute Resolution No. 38700. Should Proposition No. 1 be enacted into law?
Yes……… [ ]
No………. [ ]
[Council Member Mello]
The resolution expresses Council support (minus Councilmember Lonergan, who abstained from the vote) for Prop 1. Council members voting in favor of the resolution referenced the importance of fixing Tacoma's streets to their constituents; a broad base of support including the Port, labor, residents, and businesses; construction jobs created; and other factors. Councilmember Campbell cited the work that would be accomplished with funds raised: 48 school zones improved, 18,000 permanent pothole repairs, and the repaving of 510 residential blocks. Councilmember Boe encouraged voters to learn the facts at cityoftacoma.org/prop1facts. Councilmember Lonergan abstained from the vote, citing his personal "information only" policy on the issue. Lonergan did remind us that whether or not the proposition passes, existing utility earnings taxes over 6% will now be dedicated to street improvements. Mayor Strickland explained her yes vote by reminding us that the last time Tacoma voters passed a ballot measure to fix Tacoma's streets was 1968 - the year MLK was shot, Bobby Kennedy died, and Appollo 8 began its first US mission to orbit the moon. People want the problem of our roads solve, she said.
FINAL READING OF ORDINANCES
Substitute Ordinance No. 28177 A substitute ordinance amending Chapter 1.12 of the Municipal Code, relating to the Compensation Plan, creating a new position, entitled PAF Maintenance Chief, Assistant, and implementing rates of pay and compensation for said position. [Joy St. Germain, Director, Human Resources]
The substitute ordinance passed unanimously without further comment.
FIRST READING OF ORDINANCES
Ordinance No. 28178 An ordinance amending Title 8 of the of the Municipal Code, entitled “Public Safety and Morals”, by repealing Section 8.12.026, Vehicle Prowling in its entirety, and adding a new Chapter 8.37A, Vehicle Prowling in the Second Degree, to be consistent with state law. [Jean Hayes, Deputy City Attorney; Elizabeth Pauli, City Attorney]
The ordinance would repeal the current vehicle prowling law in Tacoma, replacing it with the recently passed RCW. The new state statute allows that the third and subsequent offenses of car prowling be treated as a Class C Felony instead of just another misdemeanor.
PUBLIC HEARINGS AND APPEALS
Jameson Babbitt Stites & Lombard, P.L.L.C., representing the appellant H&P Tacoma Acquisition, LLC, by appealing the recommendation of the Hearing Examiner regarding the request to reclassify approximately 1.78 acres/75,000 square feet of the southeast corner of a larger property located at 4601 South Orchard Street from a “R-2” Single-Family Dwelling District to a “M-1” Light Industrial District, to be developed with a stormwater detention facility requiring approximately 15,000 cubic yards of grading, landscaping, and up to 100 passenger car parking spaces; and to develop a driveway across the parcel for commercial and passenger vehicle access to South 48th Street. (Paul McCormick, Innova Architects on behalf of H&P Tacoma Acquisition, LLC; File No. REZ2013-40000199731) (Continued from the meeting of September 24, 2013)
The issue here seemed to boil down to whether or not the appellant would be able to open up the residential side of the property to truck traffic from a new facility on the site. After a fair amount of back-and-forth between Council and the parties involved over traffic studies, hours of operation, and possible mitigations (including a bit of sparring between Councilmember Boe and the appellant representative over study numbers), Coucil voted to deny the appeal, with council members Boe, Campbell, and Lonergan voting in favor of the appellant.
REPORTS BY THE CITY MANAGER
CPR Sunday Tacoma Fire Department will hold its annual CPR Sunday event this Saturday, October 13 at Foss High School. The event is free to all residents. Attendees will learn the basics of adult, child, and infant CPR, and automated external defibrillator use from trained instructors, with hands-on practice time.
Four class options will be offered - at 8 a.m., 10 a.m., 12 noon, and 2 p.m. Two of the sessions will have a Spanish language option, and one will include ASL. The event and parking are both free. Register in advance to get a reminder at cprsunday.net or call (253) 594-7979.
The Fire Department has been offering Citizen CPR training since 1994, and hosting CPR Sunday events since 1998, with the goal of increasing the number of citizens in our community who have the skills and to save a life with CPR. As Chief Duggan reminded us, learning CPR is something you do for the sake of others that makes Tacoma a better place; saving a life is an absolute good, and a selfless act.
PASS Customer Support The City of Tacoma launched its new customer support center on the second floor of the Tacoma Municipal Building as part of its new PASS (Public Access Service and Support) initiative to provide high quality service to residents and visitors to the city. The new initiative also includes online and phone systems designed to improve and streamline public access. The customer support center will operate during regular business hours, and will support the City's new 3-1-1 non-emergency customer support line and the new City QA online system.
COMMENTS AND COMMITTEE REPORTS OF THE CITY COUNCIL
Economic Development Committee – The report was deferred to the next meeting.
Councilmember Thoms followed up on the CPR Sunday conversation, mentioning that he had recently taken a COR training, and found it both useful and more intuitive than the old CPR method.
Councilmember Boe shared a couple items.
- Tacoma Chocolate Fest will take place in the Proctor District this Friday and Saturday. The event will include chocolate sampling, a chocolate challenge with prizes, and a "chocktail hour" at participating businesses.
- Pacific Avenue Streetscape work continues, despite the rains. Rain gardens appear to be working, so come down, check them out, see other progress, and suppor Pacific Avenue businesses.
Councilmember Woodards announced the opening of Five Guys Burgers out by the Tacoma Mall, which created 55 jobs. Woodards also wished Harold Moss a happy 84th birthday.
Deputy Mayor Campbell thanked all the public employees and others who worked so hard to deal with the results of the last week's inclement weather. The Deputy Mayor also shared a few upcoming events.
- A meeting on the feasibility of a new Eastside community center will be held October 2, at 2 p.m. at the Stewart Heights pool.
- On October 3 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Safe Streets will be holding a community forum at Lincoln High School, asking the public to share their input on what the next chapter of making Tacoma's neighborhoods safer will look like.
- The next City of Tacoma Proposition 1 info session will be held October 9 at 6 p.m. at the Moore Library.
Councilmember Mello expressed thanks on behalf of Tacoma residents for the public servants dealing with recent stormy weather and its fallout.
Councilmember Lonergan mentioned that after Greek Fest and Chocolate Fest, we might all want to think about this weekend's Heart Walk at Cheney Stadium this Saturday. Run it with Cheif Duggan, or walk it with Councilmember Lonergan.
For more on the items on this week's agenda, see our City Business Preview for the week.
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