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City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 7/20/2012

July 20, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Police Awards Ceremony: The Police Department conducted its annual awards ceremony on July 19th which included commissioning for two new sergeants (Chris Westby and Matt Brown) and two new police officers (Phil Davis and Kevin Clark). Special recognition was given to a number of volunteers for their service, and also to the employees of the El Paraiso restaurant for their assistance in solving a major crime. The award for life-saving was presented to John Fraser for saving the life of a young girl choking in a restaurant, for Detective Ryan Larson for dedication on a robbery case, for Shirley MacLamore and Matt Brown for their dedication in resolving a pawn broker robbery case, Jason Catlett for competence in tracking down a major drug case, and to MacLamore, Larson, and Joe Kolp for dedication in resolving the bikini barista robbery and assault case. The chief’s commendation was awarded to Brea Wolfe for her work in administering federal grants.
  • City hosts first Special Adaptive Housing team meeting: The City of Lakewood’s first Special Adaptive Housing team meeting took place on July 18th. This effort, led by the City’s Human Services Coordinator, hopes to bring increased awareness of a large grant available to veterans or service members who are entitled to compensation for permanent and total service-connected disability. The grant currently provides $63,780 to eligible veterans or service members to: a) construct a home on land to be acquired; b) build a home on existing land suitable for specially adapted housing; c) remodel an existing home, or d) apply the fund against the unpaid principal mortgage balance. Additional information about this grant can be obtained by contacting John Temme at or (206) 341-8583.
  • Puget Sound regional city managers meet: The City of Issaquah hosted a meeting for city managers from King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties on July 19th as an opportunity to provide updated information on issues of mutual concern, to include a presentation on the sustainability effort focused on new public building projects. Discussion of state funding issues is a high priority, with emphasis on the specific concern about the State discontinuing its distribution of Liquor Taxes to local governments.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 7/13/2012

July 13, 2012
To:    Mayor and Members of the City Council
From:    Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Opening Day at Lakewood Farmers Market a Huge Success: Over 500 people showed up to shop at the opening day of the first ever Lakewood Farmers Market. All of the 24 vendors were very happy with their sales and 15 more new vendors showed interest in joining the market. We had live entertainment with the 2011 Lakewood’s Brightest Star Sammi Bradley performing. The Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department is still looking for a few hot food vendors to support the lunch time crowd. For more information about the Lakewood Farmers Market please call (253) 983-7887, go online to cityoflakewood.us/farmersmarket or visit the market Tuesdays, 7/17 to 8/28 from 11am to 3pm at Lakewood City Hall (6000 Main Street SW). We look forward to continued success this summer.
  • Lakewood Summer Concert Series: On Tuesday, July 10th, the Parks, Recreation and Community Services department hosted the second week of the 2012 Summer Concert Series at American Lake Park (9222 Veterans Drive SW). Peacemaker Nation played a compilation of songs paying ranging in genres from R&B, Hip Hop, to Doo Op and Reggae. The audience of over 50 enjoyed the great weather and sounds at American Lake Park. Join us next Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. for the finals of the Lakewood’s Brightest Star Competition.
  • City of Lakewood Hosts a $5/day Day Camp: The City of Lakewood’s $5/day Day Camp “CAMP CREATE” kicked off this week with the theme “Let the Fun Begin.” Campers enjoyed Water Works Tuesday, Wii Wednesday and Pick and Flick Friday along with hours of games, crafts and more! This day camp also included a nutritious lunch and snack provided by St. Leo’s Food Connections. Camp Create takes place Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 5pm until August 17 at Tyee Park Elementary (11920 Seminole Rd SW). For more information call (253) 983-7887.
  • SummerFEST and Triathlon very successful: The City’s two-day SummerFEST festival concluded on Sunday evening July 1st around 6:00 p.m. The poor weather on Saturday morning made for a slow start but by evening the event was well attended. Although a few vendors chose not to display their wares in the rain, we had over 75 public market vendors and 22 food vendors. Over 980 children played in the kids’ zone and more people ran in the free 5K than we had last year. The movie Back to the Future was also well attended. The total two-day event attendance is estimated at 14,000 which is a bit higher than last year. A sunny Sunday along with a full day of SummerFEST activities brought the community back to the park. The big success of the weekend was the first ever inaugural SummerFEST triathlon. Mayor Richardson did the starting countdown to help125 athletes swim, bike and run to the finish line at Fort Steilacoom Park. There were athletes from throughout western Washington and Portland and all the way from British Columbia. Reports from the athletes have been extremely positive – we have been receiving e-mails and face book postings regarding how much they liked the course, how well organized the event was and that they can’t believe it was our first ever triathlon event. This will become a major Lakewood signature event.
  • Assistant City Attorney a speaker at Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association: Ass’t City Attorney Matt Kaser spoke at the Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association’s Mentor Meeting on July 12th about photo traffic infractions. Attorney Chris Torrone presented on photo infraction defense. About 24 people were in attendance.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 6/22/2012

June 22, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • City hosts appreciation breakfast for Lakewood volunteers: On June 19th, the City of Lakewood hosted a volunteer appreciation breakfast at the Old Country Buffet. The mayor, city manager and councilmembers Barth, Bocchi and Brandstetter attended the event along with approximately 115 volunteers and staff. The purpose of the event was to recognize, honor and thank these exceptional volunteers for the very significant contributions they have made to the City and the quality of our community.
  • Municipal Excellence Award to City at AWC Conference: The 2011 Municipal Excellence Award for the City’s Healthy Start Program at the Tyee Park Elementary School was presented to Lakewood by the Association of Washington Cities (AWC) at the annual conference this week in Vancouver WA. It was accepted by Councilmembers Brandstetter and Moss, and the city manager at an awards ceremony attended by City representatives from around the State. The program is an afterschool activity club focused on physical activity and nutritious snacks. Healthy start is a commitment to supporting a healthy environment for students and staff.
  • CSRT presents School Safety Patrol recognition awards: On June 19th, CSRT members CSO Conelly and CSO Miller presented recognition awards to the School Safety Patrol (SSP) student crossing guards at Lakeview Elementary School during a general assembly. They also conduct training for the SSP participants at the beginning of the school year. These student volunteers work in all weather conditions to make their school zone safe throughout the school year by their dedication to safety and service.
  • Bridgeport Way – 75th to North City Limits: Tucci and Sons will begin work on the sidewalk construction on Bridgeport Way from 75th to North City Limits on Monday, June 25th. Tucci will begin work on the west side of Bridgeport Way and maintain a one lane closure in the southbound direction 24/7 for the next 4 to 6 weeks. The project is scheduled to be completed by October 2012. For more information, please see the City’s web site at: /government/departments/public-works/capital-improvement-projects
  • United Way honors City as Premier Partner: At a reception in downtown Tacoma on June 19th, United Way recognized the City of Lakewood as one of several “Premier Partners” in their recent community-wide campaign. Special recognition was extended to Sandra Schaefer of HR for her role in coordination, and she attended the event along with the mayor and city manager.
  • Convening of Leaders forum: The city manager participated in a June 18th forum to bring together new community leaders with “seasoned” leaders, sponsored by the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Development Board (EDB). The purpose of the session was to share goals and develop mutual support for common priorities. The professionally-facilitated discussion included about 35 people representing education, local government, industry, and cultural institutions. The new leaders included the new CEO of the Visitor & Convention Bureau, the new Tacoma city manager, the new State Historical Society director, and the new manager of the Executive Council for a Greater Tacoma.
  • Human Services partners with Lakewood Water District and Living Access Support Alliance: Human Services partnered with Lakewood Water District and the Living Access Support Alliance to restore water services to a triplex in Lakewood where citizens had gone nine days without water service. Northwest Justice Project is currently reviewing this matter and may provide legal assistance to the tenants. RCW 59.18.300 states that it is “… unlawful for a landlord to intentionally cause termination of any of his or her tenant’s utility services, including water, heat...” and penalties for violations include recovery of damages and up to $100 for each day. Citizens can call (253) 983-7850 for information regarding landlord tenant laws.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 6/29/2012

June 29, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • SummerFest 2012 this weekend: SummerFest at Fort Steilacoom Park will run from 10am to 11pm on Saturday June 30th, and from 10am to 7pm on Sunday. Visit www.lakewoodsummerfest.com for detailed schedule information.
  • Lakewood’s first Triathlon: The City of Lakewood and Tacoma South Sound Sports are hosting a sprint triathlon in conjunction with our annual SummerFEST festival on Sunday, July 1 beginning at 9:00 a.m. A triathlon sprint includes a ½ mile swim (at American Lake Park in Lakewood), a 14 mile bike ride (from American Lake park, to north fort JBLM, through Steilacoom, looping back around and ending at Fort Steilacoom Park in Lakewood for a 5K run (3.2 miles). Watch out for bikers along the triathlon route . SummerFEST begins at 11:00 a.m. with another full day of fun at Fort Steilacoom Park. Since not everyone can do a sprint triathlon we will host a FREE 5K starting at 1:00 p.m.
  • Samoa Cultural Day is June 30th: The event will run from 8:30 am-5:00 pm in Clover Park High School’s Harry Lang Stadium. This free one-day event features a parade and welcome, traditional village dances/songs, native oratory speeches, Samoa traditional games, island food booths, Polynesian handicrafts and more...
  • Lake City code enforcement sweep: On June 26th, a team consisting of CSRT, Lakewood Police and the building department conducted a code enforcement sweep of a neighborhood in Lake City. The area has been a source of numerous, chronic issues including property maintenance, junk vehicles and overgrown vegetation. Complaints about eight residences and several vehicles which were illegally stored in the right of way were addressed. One of the residences has been identified as a candidate for abatement.
  • Mobile home park community meeting: This week CSO McGinnis and NPO Osness conducted a community meeting at a local mobile home park, with 22 citizens in attendance. The meeting which focused on personal safety, and the officers discussed how and when to call 911, prevention of vehicle thefts, reporting of suspicious people/vehicles, crime statistics, and fireworks.
  • CPR/First Aid Training: CSRT Staff CSO Conelly conducted CPR/AED/First Aid and Bloodborne Pathogens training for City Staff as well as Counselors in Training with the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department on June 27th. Participants learned how to keep themselves and others safe in the event of an emergency, as well as how to care for someone who is injured. Participants were able to practice their skills in the class.
  • Staff support to Habitat Volunteer Build Team: City staff participated in the Lakewood’s first Habitat for Humanity Volunteer Build Team on Saturday, June 23rd. Various departments joined forces with future homeowners choosing jobs at the two house sites, about a block apart. One house was getting millwork installed (moldings, door trims, etc.) while the other was less advanced, still having floor tiles and outside walkways created. This gave a variety of jobs using power and hand tools, or just plain shovels and strong backs. The Volunteers learned and progressed quickly, developing skills along the way. By the end of the day they were truly teams who worked cooperatively side by side, learning and teaching, and getting two new home owners a step closer to their dreams.
  • Birds in the Park: Fort Steilacoom Park’s amazing bird population is featured in Audubon Washington’s current Towhee newsletter. The story, about a recent birding field trip at the 340 acre park, includes many colorful bird pictures and can be read at: http://www.tahomaaudubon.org/Resources/Documents/0612Towhee.pdf

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 6/15/2012

June 15, 2012
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Safer Boating Grant: The Lakewood Police Department has been awarded a Federal Boating Safety grant in the amount of $20,260 to be used from July 2012 to June 2013. Funds will support lake patrols, water safety and boating classes for the community. Water patrols will conduct boat inspections, emphasize safety rules, boating courtesy and enforce the laws prohibiting boating while intoxicated throughout the boating season.
  • Washington Economic Development Association (WEDA) Spring Conference: The City’s Economic Development Manager Ellie Chambers-Grady joined professionals from around the state this week in Spokane for WEDA’s Annual Spring Conference. Conference topics included best practices in retail recruitment, export finance assistance, innovative engineering, import competition, creative uses for social media, the aerospace industry, and private equity tools for business retention and expansion.
  • South Sound Military & Communities Partnership Forum: At a community forum in downtown Tacoma on June 15th, about 125 participants reviewed progress made on JBLM-related initiatives. The workshop included small group discussion on 10 topic areas, including Transportation, Economic Development, Education, Public Safety, Healthcare, and Social Services. Project manager Dan Penrose provided an overview on the partnership, Garrison Commander COL Thomas Brittain provided a JBLM briefing, and the city manager as steering committee chair provided welcoming remarks.
  • COPS Grant Extension: A budget revision for the Community Oriented Policing grant has extended the length of time COPS CHRP of the U.S. Department of Justice (an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act program) will pay for three Neighborhood Patrol Officer positions in the Police Department, reducing general fund personnel expenditures by $120,000 in 2012. This revision also allowed Lakewood to receive increased fringe benefits retroactively totaling more than $24,000. The funds from the COPS grant have allowed the Police Department to focus on neighborhood policing (NPO) activities while maintaining a strong presence in basic policing.
  • Doing Business with JBLM Event draws large audience: Over 300 business professionals gathered on June 12th at the McGavick Center in Lakewood for the South Sound Military & Communities Partnership event, "Doing Business with Joint Base Lewis-McChord." The forum provided information about the basics of federal contracting, specific information about JBLM contracting, regional contracting awareness, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers contracting insights, and City of Lakewood, Pierce County, and state economic development resources.
  • Lakewood’s First Farmers Market Draws Media Attention: Lakewood's Farmers Market news release was picked up by several media including KOMO, the Olympian, News Tribune, Suburban Times as well as an interview request for a story by the Northwest Guardian, Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
  • Street project funding: Pierce County Regional Council on June 14th approved the recommended Federal transportation grant funding totaling $2,248,000 for its 1) Bridgeport Way Street Improvement (83rd St to 75th St) project-$478,000, 2) Bridgeport Way (112th St to 59th Ave) asphalt overlay project-S750, 000, 3) Traffic Signal Management project-$650,000, and 4) an additional $370,000 was awarded for South Tacoma Way.
  • Grants for Street Safety projects: Lakewood Public Works received two 2012 City Safety Program Grants this month, including the following project components:
    • Steilacoom Blvd Safety Improvements – Western State Hospital to Lakeview Avenue ($2.405 Million): This project provides for various improvements along the corridor including traffic signal replacements at Western State Hospital; Ardmore/Custer; and Lakeview Avenue and curb, gutter, and sidewalks between 88th and Custer Road.
    • Citywide Safety Improvements ($300,000): Provide safety upgrades at 17 existing signalized intersections including: upsizing traffic displays from 8” to 12”; implementing flashing-yellow-arrow operations for permissive left turn movements; and installing audible pedestrian signals.
    • Murray Road / 150th Corridor Project: Completion of paving of the new roundabout and the approach to JBLM Logistics Gate this week will move the project to phase 2 where Murray Road widening work will be completed. During this phase, Murray Road will be closed between 146th and 150th Streets and traffic routed to Spring Street. This phase will take approximately 4 weeks to complete when the project will move to its final stage to widen 150th Street. More project and detour information can be found on the City’s web site at: /government/departments/public-works/capital-improvement-projects .