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City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 7/11/08

July 11, 2008
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Pacific Highway Phase 3 (108th to SR512): Construction has begun on Pacific Highway between 108th and SR512. This project is a continuation of the curb, gutter, sidewalks, and bicycle lane improvements. The Contractor will grind off the existing striping and re-stripe the roadway on July 14th. The re-striping will provide narrower lanes and in some cases, elimination of the two-way center turn lane in order to facilitate construction of the sidewalks and other improvements. Construction will take place through December 2008.
  • "City of Lakewood Award" to best platoons: The city manager presented two trophies at the Warrior Forge Regimental Graduation Ceremony at Fort Lewis on July 11th to recognize the best platoons in the 2008 Leader Development and Assessment Course. Family members from around the nation were also present as their sons and daughters were recognized as future leaders by the U.S. Army.
  • Building Activity Remains Above Average. From January through June, building permit valuation totaled $87,056,647.23. A significant amount of new construction activity has centered on public projects, namely a new police station, the Lakes High School remodel and construction of the new Pierce College Science & Technology Building. Also, during this same time period, the City has received 832 building and 155 land use permit applications, and of the total received thus far this year, 80% and 61% respectively have been issued.
  • Code Enforcement Backlog Handled: Community Development has finally closed out its backlog of 2007 code enforcement cases. Attention now has focused on keeping up with 2008 cases; the most recent report shows that 23 have been closed, 54 are active, and 102 are pending.
  • State Health Dept Closes Units At Biltmore Hotel: This week, the State Department of Health took action to close 12 units at the Biltmore Hotel located on Pacific Highway SW. This action was the result of an investigation in May. Copies of the state’s report were forwarded to the Community Development Department, and are currently under review. Depending upon the seriousness of the violations, the City may choose to take additional enforcement action.
  • Demolition of 12907 Naomilawn Dr SW: A burned-out house that had been posted for abatement has been purchased. The buyer worked with City staff before his purchase, to understand the City’s requirements and to have the required permits and approvals in place by the time the sale closed, and moved immediately upon completion of the purchase to begin demolition. He is moving quickly and the demolition and cleanup of the property should be completed within about a week. This builder has a good track-record and is looking to purchase and rebuild other problem properties in the City. Staff worked with the probate attorney and the realtor to accommodate the private sale and abatement, because the house was boarded-up and was a lower priority than some of the other more dangerous properties currently in the abatement process.
  • Police actions:
    • Vehicle Prowl Interrupted: At 0022 Hrs. Patrol responded to a vehicle prowl in progress one night this week at 12:22am where it had been interrupted by neighbors who had chased the suspect into thick brush next to the Seeley Lake Apts. Containment was quickly established, which pinned the suspect down. K-931 initiated his track and the suspect was located within minutes. The suspect was booked for Theft 2nd and Vehicle Prowl 2nd degree.
    • Assault response: A fight that started at American Lake North Park spilled over to the convenience store, with two groups squaring off. One of the groups pulled out a baseball bat, which was promptly taken away by the others and used to smash windows out of their car. They then fled in their windowless ride, but the other group then clashed with the store clerk and a customer. A customer, after being charged at by a guy with a baseball bat, pulled his legally concealed .380 and pointed it at them. A display in the store was shattered by the bat which was thrown. Three were in custody on various charges.
    • Felony Elude/DUI Arrest: An officer was traveling N/B on I-5 just passing the 84th St. Exit when a vehicle passed them at a high rate of speed and was swerving in and out of its lane of travel almost sideswiping other vehicles on the freeway. After a short 1-2 minutes of failing to yield, the vehicle finally pulled over at the 38th St. exit. The driver was taken into custody and he was adamant that he didn’t see or hear the patrol car behind him and that he was “distracted” by the fireworks. The driver was processed for DUI and the BAC results were .161 and .148. The suspect was booked into the Pierce County Jail.
    • Fireworks Recap: The weather cooperated to make for a manageable 4th of July this year. The following statistics provide a review of fireworks calls for service over the last several Independence Day celebrations.
    •   July 3-4-5 2004 July 3-4-5 2005 July 3-4-5 2006 July 3-4-5 2007 July 3-4-5 2008
      Total Calls 563 705 693 764 597
      Fireworks Calls 114 167 122 149 90
      Total CFS 4 July 158 272 276 244 184

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 7/3/08

July 3, 2008
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • 4-2 SBCT Welcome Home Ceremony: Mayor Doug Richardson was joined by Councilmembers Helen McGovern and Pad Finnigan at the 4-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team’s welcome home ceremony at Fort Lewis on Tuesday, July 1st after the brigade’s 15-month deployment to Iraq. Featured speakers included Congressman Norm Dicks, I Corps Commander, Lt. Gen. Charles Jacoby, and brigade commander Colonel Jon Lehr.
  • Senior Activity Center Distributes Senior Market Vouchers: The Lakewood Senior Activity Center partnered with Pierce County Aging and Long Term Care to help distribute Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Vouchers. The program is funded by the US Department of Agriculture, State of Washington, and Pierce County. The check vouchers are valid at farmers markets and provide fruits and vegetables for lower income seniors and supports local farming by increasing the use of these farmers markets and roadside stands. The Center distributed over 60 vouchers this year to seniors in our community.
  • Lakewood Idol 2008. Auditions for Lakewood Idol will be held on Thursday, July 10 at Lakewood City Hall between 4-7pm. There is a $10 audition fee and all contestants must be age twelve or older, bring their own karaoke or back-up disc and perform as a soloist. Eight finalists will advance to the final competition on Tuesday, July 22 at 6:30pm at American Lake Park where they will compete for the cash prize of $250 and the title of Lakewood Idol 2008. For more information please call 589-2489 or visit us on the web at www.lakewoodparksandrec.com .
  • Robbery 2 / Assault 2: A victim called 911 reporting he was assaulted at the 7-11 in Tillicum by numerous subjects. He gave two suspect vehicle descriptions and officers observed located both vehicles leaving the area; suspect vehicles were stopped on Hosmer and on I-5. Numerous subjects were detained. Police were able to get enough evidence to arrest one subject who appears to be the main suspect. The victim suffered a skull fracture and had some jewelry taken.
  • Shooting: Police responded to an accidental shooting, arriving to find a 19 year-old male victim lying in the front hallway of the apartment with a gunshot wound to the left rear portion of his head. He had vital signs but was unconscious and the apparent weapon was nearby him on the floor. Another 19 year-old male told officers that he and the victim were playing around with a gun and that the victim had accidentally shot himself in the head. Two females who were also in the apartment at the time of the shooting claimed not to have seen what happened. The witnesses were taken to the station and interviewed by detectives. The suspect ended up confessing to detectives that he had actually been the one to accidentally shoot the victim. In addition to conducting interviews at the station, detectives also responded to the scene and wrote a search warrant for the apartment.
  • Marijuana Grow Operation: Officers responded to a dispute in a mobile home park. The complainant said her neighbor sprayed a garden hose into her trailer. Officers contacted the suspect male, who brought a handgun (later turned out to be a BB gun) to the door. Officers were able to take the subject into custody without incident. Officers then searched the residence and found significant amounts of marijuana growing equipment (but no plants). Officers noted other drug paraphernalia and various wiring that suggested a potential explosive devise. A bomb squad technician responded to the scene and determined that it was an alerting device that the homeowner had set up. The suspect was booked into PC jail for manufacturing illegal drugs.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 6/20/08

June 20, 2008
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager
  • Summerfest on June 21st, LPD to Host Motorcycle Rally and Ride: The LPD Traffic Unit will host Lakewood’s second Motorcycle Rally and Ride on Saturday June 21st in connection with Summer Fest.
  • Lakefront Street Ends: The Parks and Recreation Advisory Board will again review and consider policy recommendations pertaining to the City’s lakefront street ends during its regular meeting on Tuesday, June 24th at 5:30pm in the Council Chambers.
  • Association of Washington Cities 75th Annual Meeting: The city manager and Councilmember Finnigan attended the AWC’s annual conference in Yakima this week with 535 participants representing cities around the state. Keynote speakers included Governor Gregoire and Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels. Work sessions covered numerous subjects including situational leadership, citizen communications, capital project planning, new State auditing standards, infill development and downtown housing, “going green”, and the new streamlined sales tax program. The AWC approved its resolutions in preparation for the 2009 legislative agenda. Councilmember Finnigan served on the AWC nominations committee; the city manager is an AWC boardmember and also served on the resolutions committee.
  • Claudia Thomas Recognized by Boys and Girls Club: Councilmember Claudia Thomas was recognized this week by the Boys and Girls Club of South Puget Sound for her exceptional leadership in working with and advocating for youth. She was presented the 2008 Community Service Award in front of a large audience at the Tacoma Dome Exhibition Center on June 17th.
  • Special Ops Seizure: The LPD Special Ops unit seized 61 guns, 201 marijuana plants and $256,000 in cash over last weekend in a series of warrants after receiving a Crime Stoppers tip about marijuana grow in Lakeview.
  • New Police Officers Graduate after Academy Training: Lakewood Police’s two newest officers graduated from the Criminal Justice Training Center this week. Officer’s James Dean and Noah Dier successfully completed five months of required academics and will now begin training with senior officers in the field.
  • Code Enforcement Status Report: The City’s Code Enforcement Division is reporting that 138 of 213 cases filed in 2007 have been closed. 75 cases from 2007 are still considered pending. Code Enforcement has received 139 cases so far in 2008, 13 of which have been closed.
  • Abatement Update: Following a collaborative inspection with Police, Building Division, and the Health Department, Code Enforcement posted an abatement notice on a property with two collapsing buildings, an occupied travel trailer, and two occupied houses. The septic system was failed and had an illegal repair, resulting in raw sewage piled and discharging onto the ground, and pooling under the main house. One house had a rotten roof and foundation and broken windows, and the other house did not have running water. The houses are rentals, owned by relatives of the occupants. Another house, in the area just north of Lake Steilacoom, will be posted for abatement in the next several days. The house is vacant, the property is piled with garbage, there are several dilapidated structures on the property and there is a large quantity of rotting meat inside and outside the buildings. While preparing the abatement action, Code Enforcement contacted representatives of the bank that is foreclosing on the property, and they have advised that the bank will send a crew out to the property immediately to clean up the garbage and secure the buildings.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 6/27/08

June 27, 2008
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager
  • Economic Development at Lakewood United: Economic Development Manager Ellie Chambers was the speaker at Lakewood United on June 26th, providing an overview of her initial assessment of the City’s development potential. She was joined by Police Chief Bret Farrar, who introduced the new program to support new business development with a special “Construction Watch” emphasis on crime prevention at new commercial construction sites. On June 19th, Assistant City Manager David Bugher presented the group with an overview of new development projects around the City.
  • SummerFEST 2008: The community participation at SummerFEST this year was significantly higher than last year’s successful event, making the event a hit. Over 150 cars were in the car show, over 140 vendors at the public market, and over 950 children purchased bracelets for the Kids Zone. The motorcycle rally was also joined by many more riders this time, its second year sponsored by Police. Parks & Recreation did a great job coordinating the event, with support from Police, Fire, the School District, and the Arts Commission.
  • Neighborhood Association Leadership Meeting: City staff met with the leadership of the City-supported neighborhood associations on Wednesday, June 25th at City Hall. The city manager discussed the framework of Lakewood’s “Community Based Government Services” and how it tied to the City Council’s vision. The agenda also included a discussion of City participation in association meetings, meeting management, and a desire for ongoing, quarterly meetings between staff and neighborhood leadership.
  • Public Records Forum: AWC and the Washington Municipal Clerks Association co-sponsored a half-day discussion forum on public records, specifically electronic records management on June 25th at Clover Park Technical College. This event covered the "ins and outs" of state law regarding electronic records, provided an opportunity to hear from the Washington State Archives office about their new WAC rules for using the Digital Archives services, and a chance for local municipal leaders to ask questions and have discussion about how to manage and maintain public records in their electronic form in accordance with local records retention schedules.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 6/13/08

June 13, 2008
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager
  • Management Retreat: City management staff participated in an all-day retreat in town this week which included a workshop on interaction styles facilitated by managers from the City of Shoreline. There were also presentations on strategic issues, lessons from “Good to Great”, and a review of the conceptual and connective age by Jim Keene, the president of the Alliance for Innovation.
  • Juvenile Evening Reporting Center: The police chief and city manager met on June 5th with the director of the Pierce County Juvenile Court to further discuss the implementation of an evening reporting center. There are several local counseling agencies interested in providing the service to Lakewood youth who are under the Court’s supervision.
  • Community Connector briefing: Three majors from the 4-2 Stryker brigade combat team met with members of the community at the “coffee with the mayor” program, hosted this week by Deputy Mayor Don Anderson, and they provided a briefing on the brigade’s 15-month deployment to Iraq.
  • Senior Center Hosts Breakfast: The Lakewood Senior Activity Center hosted a continental breakfast for participants of four Puget Sound area Senior Activity Centers on June 5th. After a morning of ice breakers and great company, the entire group traveled to the Bremerton Senior Center for lunch and entertainment. The stars of the show were the tap dancers who ranged in age from 67-77. More than ten Senior Activity Centers participated in the event.