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City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 3/10/06

March 10, 2006
WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN

To:          Mayor and Members of the Council

From:     Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • EDB Annual Meeting: The City participated in the annual meeting on March 10th of the Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County, for which the City is a funding partner and the city manager is a board-member. Congressmen Dicks, Adams, and Reichert were present and participated in the program. The keynote speaker was Kent Harrington, a strategic business and government consultant, and his topic was U.S. relations with China.
  • Enforcement Action: The State Department of Health (DOH) has taken enforcement action against the Vagabond and Golden Lion hotels. The Vagabond was issued a notice of summary suspension. They must close and vacate the premises by March 14th, unless an appeal is filed. The Golden Lion has until March 20th to correct a list of violations or DOH will submit a “statement of charges” to the Attorney General and thereafter request charges and closure.
  • Crime Free Motel Training: LPD trained 23 Lakewood motel owners and employees on the Crime Free Motel Program. The 4-hour training program was taught in English and Korean, and includes four training modules, covering the Introduction to the Crime Free Motel Program, Working with the Police, Best Practices, and Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED). The intent is to build a lodging business community that is safe and more attractive for the transient population in the City.
  • Wal-Mart Update: Wal-Mart will begin preloading operations on March 20th, with about 350 to 500 trucks trips per day, Mondays through Saturdays, between 7:00 AM and 10:00 PM.    Public Works has placed restrictions on vehicle operations during periods of heavy traffic, in addition to dispersing the preloading routes. Preloading will last about 45 days. Wal-Mart has hired two off-duty police officers to assist with traffic control. Wal-Mart will be mailing out courtesy notices to surrounding property owners and businesses, to include contact telephone numbers should residents/business owners have questions regarding construction. Variable message boards will be installed along adjoining streets beginning March 13th.
  • Building Permit Activity: Building permit activity remains equal to last year, although permit valuations are down. Permit valuation for the months of January and February total $4,454,973. Community Development has received 297 building permits and 56 planning permits as of February 28th.   The following table breaks down timelines for approvals:
    Building Permits:
    Month

    No. of building permits applied for:

    No. of building permits issued:

    January
    150
    124
    February
    147
    113
    Totals
    297
    237
     
    Planning Permits:
    Month

    No. of planning permits applied for:

    No. of planning permits issued:

    January
    26
    20
    February
    30
    17
    Totals
    56
    37
    To-date, from January through February, 70% of all building permits were issued within 10 days of the application date. However, service levels may be impacted as a result of two recent building inspector resignations.
  • Police Training: Four officers attended a 32-hour Emergency Vehicle Operators Course (EVOC) Instructor Update in Vancouver WA, in a course was designed to improve our instructor cadre in the areas of pursuit driving, decision making, and lower speed precision driving, and paid for by the State Traffic Safety Commission.  The course used Portland International Raceway’s track, an in-field autocross and the use of two skid cars.  Six detectives attended a 40-hour course on Child Fatality Investigations at the academy in Burien, also at no cost to the city. Another officer attended a 16-hour course on Less Lethal Munitions Instructor at the academy in Burien, also at no cost to the city. Side B of Patrol attended their second cycle of In-Service training, which includes Dealing with Mentally Ill, Low Light Firearms, Defensive Tactics, Biased Based Policing, Cultural Diversity and Legal Updates.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 3/3/06

March 3, 2006
WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN

To:          Mayor and Members of the Council

From:     Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Sound TransitThe city manager and Councilmember McGovern participated today in a multi-agency discussion hosted by Sound Transit board chair John Ladenburg on the alternative grade separation options for the rail line between Tacoma and Lakewood.
  • Police Explorers- Challenge: The Lakewood Police Explorers, Post 253 competed at their first State-wide “Explorer Challenge” on February 25-26 in Federal Way. Our Explorers excelled as a new post and were recognized for their efforts and hard work in training and community service. The most notable accomplishments were 1st Place winner over all individual Drill and Ceremony by Explorer Lieutenant John Webley, 1st Place winner in response to domestic violence call Explorer Sergeant Jessica Lowrance and Explorer Roger Hunton, 2nd Place winner in Field Interview Report (FIR ) Explorer Sergeant Krystelle Purkey and Explorer Zack Crommes, and 3rd Place winner in the overall physical agility Explorer Tiffany Byers.
  • The Lakewood Latino Police Advisory Board: LLPAB hosted a Latino Youth Leadership forum on February 25th  at the Lakewood Police Station with 15 Hispanic youth to prepare for a Leadership Summit to be held in the fall of 2006. These LLPAB Members and the fifteen young people tackled issues at the forum that challenge Latino youth in today's culture. The forum was such a success that another will be held on March 18th to continue the planning sessions for the Summit.
  • Regional Vice Task Force "John Operation" Update: LPD conducted a John Operation on February 24th in the 8800 block of South Tacoma Way. The team made a total of 22 arrests which included 19 Johns, one prostitute, and 2 for drug dealing.  LPD continues to lead other the other cities in arrest rates. We anticipate the diversion fees from the last two operations will generate over $8,000 from this operation for use in additional prostitution enforcement. In addition, these two operations will provide $10,800 to the Metro Development Council to provide outreach and treatment programs for street prostitutes. With this funding, MDC has plans to open an in-patient treatment facility, in addition to drug treatment, mental health counseling, health screenings, and job placement services.
  • LPD Officers Participate in "Hero To Hero" Event: LPD officers donated "the shirts off their back", and participated in the “Pack Out” event held at Camp Murray on February 25th.  "Hero To Hero" is a nationwide program that began here in Pierce County several years ago. Its purpose is to reinforce the connection that our troops serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo, and Guantanamo Bay have with police officers and firefighters back home. Public safety personnel donate agency logo shirts and other garments, with added handwritten messages of support, which are shipped to units overseas. These garments are extremely popular, morale building items among the troops, and reinforce the fact that while they are in combat zones, their families back home are being protected by cops, firefighters, and medics. This year, over 5,000 shirts were packed up for shipment this week. The event was featured on KIRO TV News.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 2/17/06

February 17, 2006
WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN
To:      Mayor and Members of the Council

From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Proposed 20-Lot Subdivision at Butte and 104th Street SW: City staff conveyed information about the sensitivity of the community concerns, and the developer has chosen to submit alternative subdivision design proposals to address traffic issues. These are under preparation which has delayed any action on the application.
  • Wal-Mart Update: Subcontractors have begun preliminary work at the Wal-Mart construction site, which includes installation of construction entrances, and drainage and erosion control measures. Onsite grading activities may begin once these items have been installed and inspected by the City, and after the current status of the Red-Tailed Hawk and associated nest is reviewed. If the nest is active, the City will require minimized construction activity in proximity of the nest from April 1st through July 31st. A haul route plan, which is part of the project’s pre-loading process, has been submitted, but has not been approved. Wal-Mart has yet to acquire various easements along Bridgeport Way SW; off-site improvements will not be constructed until these easements have been acquired. Pre-loading is still planned to begin in mid- to late- March. Prior to pre-loading, variable message boards are required to be placed along appropriate rights-of-way as required by and approved by the City Engineer.
  • Police Outreach: The Pierce College Dental Hygiene Program held a sealant clinic for kids on February 11th, and. Community Service Officer Gail Conelly fingerprinted and photographed the kids for a child safety ID kit. There were approximately 100 kids throughout the day, and over 70 were fingerprinted. On February 7th, Chief Saunders gave a power point presentation to the Tillicum Merchant’s Association outlining his new Anti-Property Crime initiatives.  Some of the new programs to be introduced include Operation ID to help citizens properly document and mark their property, faster access to fingerprint analysis, assignment of a detective to the district teams, increased development of block watch and citizen patrol teams. On February 11th, Officer Austin Lee conducted safety seminar to 56 Korean Senior Citizens at a local church in Lakewood; he covered Pedestrian Safety, Identity Theft Prevention, Fraud against Senior Citizens, Domestic Violence, and Calling 911.
  • EOC Training: EOC (Emergency Operations Center) training was held for Department Directors and Emergency Management Council and Planning Cell members on February 9th. This training, which included detailed review of the Katrina experience from responders there, will enhance our awareness and coordination capabilities to handle emergencies.
  • PSE Performance Standards: Puget Sound Energy reports that for 2005, both indices measuring performance in terms of duration of outages and outage frequency improved significantly from the previous year.  Both indices are well below the company wide average and the PSE Service Quality Index. The two indices are the SAIDI (System Average Interruption Duration Index) and SAIFI (System Average Interruption Frequency Index).

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 2/24/06

February 24, 2006
WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN
To:          Mayor and Members of the Council
From:     Andrew Neiditz, City Manager
  • Storm Clean-up: In the aftermath of the February 17th windstorm, most of the City’s rights-of-way were cleared of tree-limbs and debris in a few days, and the City’s traffic signals resumed operational status. Efforts have been coordinated with Lakewood Refuse regarding special pick-ups to be requested by residents, as well as availability of the recycling site at Sales Road. To publicize the information, a bulletin will go out in today’s City Happenings.
  • Domestic Violence Training: In May, the City will be sending a team comprised of a prosecutor, police officer and a community advocate to a three- day training entitled Advocacy, Law Enforcement and Prosecution: Working Together as a Team. This training is offered once a year and is provided by invitation only. The training is designed to bridge the gaps between law enforcement, prosecutors and community advocates in an effort to help government and non profit organizations provide better service to victims.
  • DV Info: The temporary protection order kiosk has now been moved. It is still located on the third floor but is at the end of the hall way to afford citizens to use more privacy.
  • Targeted Crosswalk Enforcement = Pedestrian Safety: In order to lessen the risk of serious pedestrian injuries and fatalities, the Police Department has again implemented the Targeted Crosswalk Enforcement Program. This program will help focus drivers to show due care when driving a motor vehicle past a cross walk when pedestrians are present. LPD implemented this program in 2005 and found it be effective on the small scale in which it was used. These Pedestrian Emphasis Patrols will help us clearly define where our problem pedestrian crosswalk issues are located. We will then educate the public by enforcing the laws and providing educational literature.
  • LAAPAC: The LAAPAC (Lakewood African American Police Advisory Council) was the feature on the February 22nd Lincoln DeMarco Radio show in Lakewood.  LAAPAC was asked to make this a monthly event. There was the opportunity to talk about the other police outreach programs in the community as well. The concept of making for a safer community by filling voids and getting services into families as a prevention strategy was introduced.
  • Lawyer recruitment: The Legal Department will be sending an attorney to participate in Seattle University School of Law’s annual National Minority Law Student Recruitment month event located at Mt. Tahoma HS on February 24th.
  • Community Debrief: With the help of community members Ed Kane and Pam Roebuck last Saturday, CSO Jason Jennings conducted a community debrief meeting at the fire station on Washington Blvd regarding a shots fired call that had recently occurred in the area. There were 15 people in attendance. The debrief began with review of the incident and the police response.  It then moved into what a block watch is and how it works. Two strong block watches are being formed, on 114th and on Forest.
  • Theft of Bait vehicle ended with 2 arrests:  Lakewood Police Department’s bait car was activated this week. This is a highly sophisticated vehicle, donated by State Farm Insurance, that is monitored and information is forwarded to the Police when it is activated. Activation occurs when any door opens, ignition is turned on, or the trunk or hood is opened. A GPS tracking system allows us to safely follow the vehicle’s course. At a safe speed and location, the doors lock and the engine is disabled. The suspects in this case admitted to “taking” the bait vehicle.  They said they were on their way to work when they saw the car and decided to take it instead of going to work.  Both subjects were in their construction clothes and were wearing tool belts. Both suspects were booked for Theft 1st Degree.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 2/10

February 10, 2006
WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN
To:      Mayor and Members of the Council

From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Pacific Highway Street Improvement Project: Public Works has finally cleared the necessary environmental approvals associated with the Pacific Highway Street Improvement project from Bridgeport Way to 108th St.  Phase I will be advertised for bids around February 16th with bid opening scheduled for March 9th.  Phase I includes all the improvements (widening, curb & gutter, sidewalk, street lighting, landscaping, overlaying) except the Sounder Station site area improvements, and also the signalization at the Bridgeport Way intersection.  Those subsequent improvements are in Phase II which is anticipated to be bid in the beginning of 2007.
  • McChord Air Force Base proposed changes to Overflights: There will be a public open house on February 22nd to hear public comments on the proposed changes to overflights from McChord. Our preliminary review of the “supplemental environmental assessment” document indicates that a greater area in both Lakewood and Tacoma would be overflown and that the number of nighttime overflights would increase. Also, the air show training currently conducted at Moses Lake would be moved to McChord.
  • City Automated Traffic Enforcement Program: Requests for Proposals (RFP) responses are due on February 10th  from potential venders for the City’s Automated Traffic Enforcement program, which includes automated speed enforcement in school zones and automated red light running enforcement.  It is anticipated that Council award of contract would be March 20th with program start on May 15th.
  • Consultant Services Request for Proposal: Public Works is presently advertising for RFP’s for consultant services to assist in the update of that portion of the City code relating to Public Construction and Development Standards.  It is anticipated that the year-long process will involve a technical advisory group to represent the development community.
  • Neighborhood Traffic Control Open House Meeting: Public Works and Police held an open house meeting on February 9th on neighborhood traffic control with the residents along 104th St between Lake Louise Dr and Butte Dr.
  • Speed Enforcement in School Zones Program: Public Works sought and received a proposal from the City’s existing red light running vender to implement an early start of the automated speed enforcement in school zones programs.  If implemented said school zones enforcement program could be up and running on March 1st.  This would be just a short term program in place until May 15th when the longer more permanent would be in place.
  • Avian Flu: The Police Chief attended a table top exercise on the Avian Flu Crisis by State DOH, along with other State and County representatives.
  • Wal-Mart: Public Works and Community Development met on February 8th with Wal-Mart’s agents and contractors to discuss the construction of the proposed Wal-Mart located at the northerly end of Bridgeport Way SW.  We were informed that construction would begin either mid-or late March, 2006.  At this stage of the project, staff is waiting on the submittal of a projected work schedule and traffic control plan.  Public notification of surrounding property owners was discussed at length; a notification letter will be mailed to affected property owners 30-days prior to commencement of construction.  Their public relations consultant’s job is to keep the community informed of ongoing construction activity; and Wal-Mart proposes to conduct neighborhood meetings while the project is underway. The City will strictly adhere to enforcing the EIS mitigation measures, the hearing examiner’s decision, & zoning and building controls.
  • Armed Robbery Prevention: Community Service Officer Laurie Lowery taught an armed robbery prevention class at Sound Credit Union on February 7th to member employees from the branch at Bridgeport Way SW as well as a couple of Tacoma branches. She taught methods of recognition of potential suspects as well as robbery prevention methods.
  • LAAPAC:A radio interview about the Lakewood African American Police Advisory Council with Julius Brown will be on 1180 AM in Lakewood on February 22nd at 12 noon.