City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 7/26/2013

July 26, 2013
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Heidi Wachter, Interim City Manager

Council Meetings

On Monday, August 5, 2013 at 5:30 P.M. the City Council will tour the Clover Park Technical College Health and Sciences Facility building. Following the tour, the City Council will hold its regular meeting beginning at 7:00 P.M. in the Clover Park Technical College Rotunda located at 4500 Steilacoom Blvd. SW Building #3 Lakewood, WA 98499. City Council agenda items will be: 1) Proclamation recognizing Dr. John Walstrum for dedicated services as President of Clover Park Technical College; 2) Recognizing Staff Sergeant Marcus Taylor for assisting in an apartment fire; 3) Proclamation recognizing the Lakewood Library’s 50th anniversary 4) Clover Park School District Board Report; 5) Amending Lakewood Municipal Code relative to firearms, dangerous weapons, and explosives; and 6) Endorsing the Pierce County Library System as a non-city entity to participate in the Association of Washington Cities Employee Benefit Trust.

The City Council's next study session is scheduled for Monday, August 12, 2013 beginning at 7:00 P.M. in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW. City Council agenda items will be: 1) Holding a joint meeting with the Lakewood Water District; 2) Appointing Youth Council members for 2013-2014; and 3) Appointing an individual to serve on the Citizens’ Transportation Advisory Committee through November 15, 2014.

Topics of Interest and Updates

Lakewood Pays Tribute to Bill Harrison on his 80th Birthday

Mayor Emeritus Bill Harrison celebrated his 80th birthday on July 2, 2013 at Lakewood's Tacoma Country & Golf Club. Many of his former Army colleagues recounted his influence in their careers and lives at Fort Ord, CA and Fort Lewis as he commanded the 7th Infantry Division and I Corps respectively. A number of councilmembers and staff – past and present -- joined scores of well-wishers to honor Lakewood's first mayor and recount his unparalleled legacy of leadership in the City. Councilmember Helen McGovern-Pilant and others remarked that Lakewood may not have voted to incorporate without the commitment and vision of Mayor Harrison.

Communications Update

Communications Director Taking Leave of Absence

Communications Director Jeff Brewster, an Army Reserve officer, graduated today from the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, PA. The College awards a Master of Strategic Studies for this two-year graduate program. Next month, LTC Brewster will report to the US Central Command headquarters at MacDill AFB, FL for a one-year tour of duty. He will return to his duties in Lakewood sometime in the latter half of 2014.

Community Safety Resource Team Update

The combined efforts of CSRT, the Building Department, Lakewood Police and Animal Control resulted in a house that has been a frequent source of complaints to the city being declared unsafe to occupy and red tagged. The house, on Hillgrove Lane, had been a home to transients and the cause of many complaints to police for suspected illegal activities. Additionally, complaints were received by CSRT due to discarded trash being left in the yard attracting rodents and creating a stench, and the vegetation being overgrown. The house was found to have numerous building code violations, as well as no power, water, or garbage service.

The occupants were advised they could no longer live there. Approximately 20 large bags of garbage were removed from the back yard.

Legal Update

During the week of July 15- July 19, 2013 the Cities of Lakewood and University Place received 21 cases for review by the Prosecutor. Of these, 6 charges were filed in Court. This is in addition to the in-custody cases already filed for both cities.

During the week of July 22-25, 2013 three trials were scheduled in Municipal Court. Two cases resolved in the defendants pleading guilty to all counts. One of these pleas was to two counts of assault in the 4th degree, domestic violence along with additional criminal charges. The 3rd trial scheduled, a DUI involving a head on collision resulted in a guilty verdict.

Economic Development Update

TRCVB New Brand Unveiling

Economic development staff attended the unveiling of the new Tacoma Regional & Convention and Visitors Bureau brand this week. Travel Tacoma with a tagline of Fearless Exploration and emphasis on highlighting three South Sound “icons”, Mt. Rainier, Classic Cars, and Glass Art will be the focus of the brand. Councilmember’s Brandstetter and Barth also attended. Click here for additional information: http://www.businessexaminer.com/blog/July-2013/TRCVB-unveils-new-brand-identity-for-region/

Community Development Update

Building Permits

The community development and public works departments accepted for filing and/or issued 79 permits of all types (planning, building, business licensing, and right-of-way permits) this past week.

Planning Advisory Board Update

On July 24, the Planning Advisory Board conducted a public hearing and made recommendations to the City Council lessening the land use and development regulations for drive-throughs. This action will be forwarded to the City Council for review and consideration.

Automated Permitting System Update

Community development staff is in the process of overhauling its automated permitting system. Testing continues regarding the migration of electronic permit data from Permits Plus to Eden software. The business licensing module is anticipated to be in operation by mid-August. User training begins this September. The building permit module is anticipated to be in operation by October. The department will be offering online electronic permitting through approved customer service accounts.

Residential fires displace families

Since July 8, 15 families have been displaced as a result of residential fires. The latest fires occurred on July 24: A small kitchen fire broke out at 14440 Union Avenue SW; and the second, was an electrical fire at 8702 Lawndale Avenue SW. The City declared the Lawndale property unsafe. The City has used its community development block grant program to provide temporary housing, and first and last month’s rent to qualified individuals.

Public Works Update

Bridgeport Way (112th St -59th Ave) Asphalt Overlay project-Project Update

Starting this Friday night (7/26/2013) Bridgeport way between 100th St and Lakewood Drive/Lakewood Towne Center Drive will be closed to all vehicle traffic starting around 7:00 p.m. and ending at 7:00 a.m. in order to facilitate the installation of an underground conduit crossing of Bridgeport Way.

Parks, Recreation, and Community Service Update

Join the City of Lakewood Next Tuesday for an Extended Farmers Market

The Lakewood Farmers Market will be open from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 30th. Come on down and enjoy the delicious goodies, fresh produce and beautiful crafts. Throughout the market day, there will be performances from several bands and individuals for market goers to enjoy. This has been a great year and the Farmers Market and we would like to share this wonderful community asset with as many people as possible, which is why we have chosen to extend it until 7 p.m. for two days this season, July 30th and Sept. 10th. For more information visit lakewoodparksandrec.com

Mark Your Calendars

August 6th- National Night Out

September 15th- Raider Brigade Homecoming Parade and Celebration