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City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 1/11/2013

January 11, 2013
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Public Works submits two Grant applications for "2013 Quick Response Safety Program": The following are the grant projects. Grant awards will be announced February 2nd with the requirement that these projects be advertised for construction bids no later than October 1, 2013.
    • Citywide Safety Upgrade Project: This project would upgrade up to 43 existing signalized intersections with better visibility displays and modify operations to flashing-yellow-arrow where appropriate. This project adds on to an existing grant the City received to upgrade up to 16 intersections. Total new grant request is $661,000.
    • Custer/John Dower Signal Replacement: This traffic signal would be replaced and upgraded with better visibility displays, pavement rehabilitation, and new pavement markings. The new signal will be placed within existing rights-of-way, but wide enough to accommodate future dedicated left turn lane(s) when warranted. Total grant request is $400,000.
  • CSRT removes homeless camp: On December 27th, the CSRT (Community Safety & Resource Team) coordinated the Lakewood Municipal Court work crew, Parks staff and Lakewood Police officers to remove a homeless camp and clean up the garbage left over. The camp was located underneath the 75th St W Bridge just off of Bridgeport Way. The location came to the City’s attention from the Pierce County Conservation District. They have a water quality study that is on-going and they noticed both the existence of at least one tent and a lot of garbage underneath the bridge and the elevated levels of fecal coli form bacteria found in Flett Creek in that area. There were two tents located under the bridge and both were tagged with a message from the City of Lakewood with notification to vacate the area within three days or they would be removed by the City and property disposed of. There was also a stabbing there on December 20th, related to a dispute between two homeless men who wanted the same tent. When the team arrived on the 27th, one tent was gone and the other had apparently been abandoned. The large amount of garbage was cleaned up thanks to the work crew and the area will be watched by patrol to prevent others from setting up camp there.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 1/4/2013

January 4, 2013
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Mayor is speaker at Lakewood United and Chamber of Commerce: On January 3, Mayor Richardson presented a retrospective of his 17 years on the Lakewood City Council at Lakewood United. He recalled pivotal moments in the City’s history such as the 2001 Council elections and various initiatives that did not gain traction such as the proposed theme park and take-over of utilities in Lakewood. Those distractions, however, were overshadowed by major accomplishments such as connecting Tillicum and Woodbrook to sewers; the construction of a city hall and police station with little to no debt; the formation of the Lakewood Police Department; the realignment of Pacific Highway; Sounder rail service to Lakewood; and good relationships with surrounding jurisdictions. Also on January 3, Mayor Richardson presented a “State of the City” address to the Lakewood Chamber of Commerce during which he highlighted ongoing and anticipated development in Lakewood.
  • Building Permit Activity: For 2012, the building division issued 1,152 building permits and 160 planning permits totaling $46 million in estimated valuation.





    No. of building permits issued




    No, of planning permits issued




    New building permit valuation




  • HR Director elected President for Western Washington State Chapter International Public Management Association: HR Director Debra Young has been elected as President for the Western Washington State Chapter International Public Management Association – HR (IPMA-HR). Her term will run for two years (2013-2014). The purpose of IPMA-HR is to provide a professional forum for members to increase personal development through technical programs and to strengthen resources.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 12/14/2012

December 14, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • City receives two grants from Nisqually Tribe: This past summer, the Nisqually Tribe invited the City of Lakewood and the West Pierce Fire District to apply for grants under the tribe’s 2012 Charitable Fund Program, specifically the local government support fund. The Tribal Council reviews applications on a case-by-case basis. Generally, the grants are used to support police, fire, emergency services, and other public safety needs. Lakewood applied for two grants and the fire district applied for one grant. At an awards banquet in Olympia on December 12th, Lakewood received a $20,000 grant for the City’s Healthy Start School program and a second grant for $40,000 to perform stream restoration on Clover Creek. Lakewood and West Pierce Fire District officials in attendance included ass’t city manager Dave Bugher; parks, recreation & community services director Mary Dodsworth; and Troy Pokswinski, associate civil engineer. During the first quarter of 2013, the Nisqually Tribe members will visit Lakewood, in part to introduce themselves to the greater Lakewood community. The West Pierce Fire District also received an award in the amount of $30,000, to expand emergency medical services during peak demand periods. This was the Lakewood community’s first attempt in making grant applications with the Nisqually Tribe.
  • City meets with State Legislators: Members of the city council and senior staff met with three legislators on December 14th representing the two districts covering the City of Lakewood. From the 28th district, Senator Mike Carrell attended, and from the 29th district Representatives Steve Kirby and David Sawyer. Issues of priority importance to the City were discussed, including concerns about shifts in state-shared revenues.
  • Public Works Department – Holiday Charity Drive – Phase 2: The Public Works Department and some of their vendors supported Lakewood Area Shelter Association (LASA) in their holiday gift-giving program. Staff granted over 25 gift requests for LASA families ranging from: home supplies (like flatware and vacuums) to kid and teen gifts (like dolls, craft supplies, personal video game players, videos, and sports equipment). In addition, they collected $650 in cash donations.
  • Christmas Tree Lighting: On December 7th, fourth grader and Southgate Elementary ASB Vice President Virginia Cabrera Horta flipped the switch to light up Lakewood’s tree and start the festivities for the 17th annual Christmas Tree Lighting Festival. Local families enjoyed a parade, live entertainment, refreshments, activities, crafts, a magician and a visit with Santa. The Lakes High School Culinary Program provided 1,000 delicious cookies for all to enjoy and Forza brought free hot beverages.
  • Jingle Bell Rock 5K: On Saturday, December 8th, the City of Lakewood hosted the inaugural Jingle Bell Rock 5K. This was the first run to take place through “downtown” Lakewood and is sure to become a local community tradition to kick off the holiday season. Serious runners and festive walkers loved the course. There were many activities to enjoy before and after the run including a rock and roll band, crafts and games and refreshments. This event would not have been a success had it not been for the coordination and support of the Parks, Recreation and Community Services, Public Works and Police departments and the Lakewood Towne Center. The event’s title sponsor was St. Clare Hospital and was supported by many volunteers from McChord Air Force Base. Race results and photos are posted online at www.lakewoodparksandrec.com .

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 12/21/2012

December 21, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Orchard Street success story: A house in Tillicum had been abandoned by the tenants. The tenants tore doors from the hinges and broke windows before leaving. Garbage and debris surrounded the outside of the house. CSRT staff was able to contact the bank, who had a work crew on site within 72 hours of the call for assistance. The house is being repaired with new windows and doors. The garbage and debris had been removed from the exterior. The property is being restored thanks to the rapid response by the bank.
  • Artist reveals bronze oak leaves for gateway arch: Artist David Eisenhour and his wife attended the December 17th Council meeting with two examples of the bronze oak leaves which will soon adorn the gateway arch at the Transit Connector project. The Garry Oak leaf has long been a symbol of the city of Lakewood. The leaves were cast in Walla Walla and will be installed once the Transit Connector project is complete which is scheduled for the end of the year.
  • Quarterly Employee Recognition: On December 20, the City’s management team prepared and hosted an annual employee breakfast in the council chambers. During the event, the city manager recognized police officer Pete Johnson and employee Jeanette Matthews for their outstanding examples in demonstrating the guiding principle of “respect” in the course of their duties. Mayor Richardson and councilmembers Brandstetter and Barth participated as well. City employees gave Mayor Richardson a standing ovation for his leadership and service to Lakewood over the last 17 years.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 12/7/2012

December 7, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • City Pays Respects to Fallen Soldier: Wednesday, December 5, the 4-2 Stryker Brigade (Lakewood’s Community Connection to the Army) conducted a memorial service for Staff Sergeant Rayvon Battle. SSG Battle was killed in a munitions accident shortly after arriving in Afghanistan. Mayor Richardson, Deputy Mayor Anderson, and Mayor Emeritus Bill Harrison represented the City of Lakewood at the memorial service. The 4-2 Stryker Brigade is broadly expected to be the last US Army brigade combat team to deploy to Afghanistan. The brigade is scheduled to redeploy in August 2013 after a 9-month deployment.
  • Christmas Tree Lighting and 5K Jingle Bell Run/Walk: This is a final reminder that the City will host the 17th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Festival later this evening from 4-7pm (December 7) and the inaugural 5K Jingle Bell Run/Walk tomorrow at 9am.
  • CSRT and LPD serve search warrant on scrap metal business: On February 13th, Officer Pete Johnson and CSRT served a search warrant on a metal scrapping business in Lakewood called WOTC Scrap Metal. Service of the search warrant resulted in the seizure of over 13,000 documents, numerous items of stolen property whose owners could be identified as well as numerous brand new metal items that were clearly not scrap, but still taken in as scrap metal. There were many hours of follow-up by CSRT personnel to go over all 13,000 plus documents in an effort to determine if the laws pertaining to taking in scrap metal were followed. It was determined that virtually every document reviewed showed multiple violations for not documenting required information. All the reports were completed and the City issued a Notice and Order to revoke the business license and the case was filed with the Pierce County Prosecutor for charging. As of this week, the business has formally left Lakewood and the manager has been charged with multiple crimes.