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City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 3/20/2015

March 20, 2015

WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN

To: Mayor and Members of the City Council

From: John J. Caulfield, City Manager

Topics of Interest and Updates

March 24 Meeting to Discuss Community Project at Fort Steilacoom Park

The City of Lakewood’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Board will host a community meeting March 24 to discuss options for a new community project at Fort Steilacoom Park. The meeting - which begins at 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 24 under the large Rotary Shelter near the park’s playground – will look at creating a potential outdoor performance area or gathering space somewhere at Fort Steilacoom Park. The Rotary Club of Lakewood, a longtime service group committed to improving the area, asked City Council to consider this project. The City Council asked the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board to host a community conversation regarding this opportunity. Last year, the Rotary Club explored the idea of building an amphitheater somewhere within the park’s 340 acres, but based on community feedback the Rotary Club went back to the drawing board to consider other options.  

For more information regarding this meeting, please contact Mary Dodsworth at (253) 589-2489.

Amendment to Fort Steilacoom Park’s Lease

At the Lakewood City Council meeting at 7 p.m., March 23, the City Council will discuss a proposed amendment to Lakewood’s lease of Fort Steilacoom Park. The City Council will discuss extending the lease to 2040 and removing language that assigns financial responsibility to Pierce County if Lakewood somehow couldn’t meet the lease requirements.

For more information on the lease and its amendment: http://goo.gl/9hKO8o

Pierce County READS Proclamation

On March 16, the Lakewood City Council made a proclamation declaring March 1, 2015 to April 24, 2015 as Pierce County READS. On hand to accept the proclamation from Councilmember John Simpson was Kim Archer, Lakewood Branch Manager of the Pierce County Library.

City Council Passes Tax Incentive Measures

The Lakewood City Council unanimously passed two measures related to tax-incentive programs near the Lakewood Station on 11424 Pacific Hwy SW at its March 16, 2015 meeting. The first ordinance designated the area encompassing the Lakewood Station a tax incentive urban use center. The new designation establishes a multifamily tax exemption program in area. The exemption applies to the new housing improvement portion of the property taxes. Owners who make eligible housing improvements will be exempt from any tax increases related to those improvements for a period of 8 to 12 years. Next, the City Council passed a related resolution to designate some the area within the tax incentive urban use center as a residential target area. The resolution adds a tax exemption for eligible multifamily housing around the Lakewood Station from all value added property taxation for the exemption period.

For more information: http://goo.gl/l7X9dX

State of the City Presentation

On Wednesday, March 18, City Manager John Caulfield presented the 2015 State of the City for the first time. Speaking to the Clover Park Rotary Club, Caulfield gave an overview of the City's progress and performance in 2014, including its financial strength, its improvements in public safety, parks and other areas, as well as what residents should look forward to in 2015. The underlying message? "The State of our City is strong. Our future is bright."

Collections Amnesty from the Municipal Court

For a limited time the collections agency of the Municipal Court of Lakewood, University Place, Steilacoom and Dupont, AllianceOne Receivables, is offering to settle accounts for less than what is owed. You need to contact AllianceOne at (253) 620-2222 or (800) 456-8838 to see if you qualify for amnesty. DO NOT WAIT as this program is only being offered for a short time.

Toxic Algae Advisory for Lake Steilacoom, American Lake Lifted

Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department has lifted the Toxic Algae Caution Advisories for Lake Steilacoom and American Lake. The toxic algae bloom has decreased in size and no longer presents a public health concern. Toxic algae are capable of producing toxins and, if present in large amounts, can pose a risk to pets and people. Swallowing or prolonged skin contact with algae may cause illness that might include, muscle weakness, vomiting, diarrhea and/or nausea.

If you see signs of a new toxic algae bloom or for further information, please contact: Ray Hanowell at (253)798-2845 (  ), or Lindsay Tuttle at (253)798-3530 (  ), or visit the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department website at www.tpchd.org/toxicalgae  

#IamLakewood Photo of the Week

From the St. Patrick's Day Festival held by the Lakewood Senior Activity Center yesterday, March 17, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Decked out in their finest greenery, the older residents of ‪#‎IamLakewood  celebrated the holiday in style. Party-goers enjoyed a potluck buffet of healthy and delicious snacks. The festival also held a rousing game of "people bingo," where attendees had to match a table of different experiences and traits to their fellow party-goers. Players sniffed out who among their number had been born in Hawaii, traveled through all 50 states or been to Woodstock. Many a bingo was left just shy of success, when no one would admit to using plastic covers for their furniture.

The party was free for all the Center's members, and $3.28 for anyone else who wanted to swing by.

For more photos of the celebration: http://goo.gl/pqNU3e

Parks and Recreation

Next Week at the Lakewood Senior Activity Center

The Lakewood Senior Activity Center, located at 9112 Lakewood Drive SW, keeps a busy schedule. After all, the LSAC exists to promote healthy minds and bodies by providing recreation and social opportunities for older adults. Courses for fitness, art, writing and even computer literacy run for weeks. Day to day, there are plenty of other events freely open to the public, or with only a couple days’ advance.

Call the mainline at (253) 798-4090 to RSVP for events.

Monday, March 23

  • Fit Happens, 8 a.m.-9 a.m.
  • Fitness & Fun, 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
  • SAIL Class(Stay Active and Independent for Life), 10:35 a.m.-11:35 a.m.
  • Beginner and Intermediate Ballroom Dance, 4 p.m.-5 p.m.
  • Yoga Stretch Concepts, 5:15 p.m.-6:15 p.m.

Tuesday, March 24

  • Zumba Gold, 9 a.m.-10:55 a.m.
  • Stretch and Strengthen, 10 a.m.-10:45 a.m.
  • Drop-in Line Dancing, 3 p.m.-4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, March 25

  • Fit Happens, 8 a.m.-9 a.m.
  • Fitness & Fun, 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
  • SAIL Class(Stay Active and Independent for Life), 10:35 a.m.-11:35 a.m.

Thursday, March 26

  • Zumba Gold, 9 a.m.-10:55 a.m.
  • Principles of Photography, 9 a.m.-11 a.m.
  • Stretch and Strengthen, 10 a.m.-10:45 a.m.
  • Memory Social Hour: St. Patrick’s Day, 2 p.m.

Friday, March 27

  • Fit Happens, 8 a.m.-9 a.m.
  • Fitness & Fun, 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
  • Woodcarving, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Open Computer Lab, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • SAIL Class (Stay Active and Independent for Life), 10:35 a.m.-11:35 a.m.

For more information: http://goo.gl/afZJSn   

Council Meetings

The City Council will be holding a study session on Monday, March 23, 2015, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW.  Agenda items for the meeting include:

  • 2014 Police Report
  • Review of public art funding options
  • Ft. Steilacoom Park lease update
  • Bridgeport Way Gateway project update
  • Proposed Resolution supporting a transportation package

The City Council will be holding a regular meeting on Monday, April 6, 2015, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW.  Agenda items for the meeting include:

  • Youth Council Report
  • Proclamation declaring April 7, 2015 as National Service Recognition Day
  • Clover Park School District Report
  • Set April 20, 2015 as a public hearing date on the 2015 Carry Forward Budget Adjustments
  • Supporting a transportation package
  • Approve Ft. Steilacoom Park lease
  • Approve public art project location at Washington Blvd. and Gravelly Lake Dr.
  • Reports by the City Manager - Review of Washington eminent domain laws 

Amendment to Fort Steilacoom Park's Lease

At the Lakewood City Council meeting at 7 p.m., March 23, the City Council will discuss a proposed amendment to Lakewood’s lease of Fort Steilacoom Park.

The City Council will discuss extending the lease to 2040 and removing language that assigns financial responsibility to Pierce County if Lakewood somehow couldn’t meet the lease requirements.

Management of the now-340-acre park has changed hands over the years. Fort Steilacoom Park was leased by the state Department of Natural Resources to Pierce County in 1970. In 2006, the City of Lakewood and Pierce County signed an interlocal agreement that allowed Lakewood to manage and maintain the park. In 2014, the City formally assumed the lease of the park from the Department of Social and Health Services.

When the City applied for a state grant to develop the trail around Waughop Lake, the City learned Pierce County was still listed as the “Assigner” on the agreement and would remain liable for payment of rents and any other performance issues if the City were not able to comply. Neither the City nor Pierce County realized that the County was still obligated to step in if the City fails to meet the terms of the lease.

According to DSHS, this is standard language in lease assumption agreements, however, both the State and Pierce County determined that Lakewood is fit to assume full responsibility of the lease for the foreseeable future, and DSHS is willing to make adjustments. The State is allowing the City to extend the lease of Fort Steilacoom Park to 2040 and remove Pierce County’s “Assigner” responsibilities in 2025, when the original lease ends

Mary Dodsworth, Parks, Recreation and Community Services Director with the City of Lakewood, says Lakewood ultimately wants to discuss transferring the entire site to the City to improve the ability to deal with future issues and conditions.

Toxic Algae Advisories for Lake Steilacoom, American Lake Lifted

Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department has lifted the Toxic Algae Caution Advisories for Lake Steilacoom and American Lake. The toxic algae bloom has decreased in size and no longer presents a public health concern.

Toxic algae are capable of producing toxins and, if present in large amounts, can pose a risk to pets and people. Swallowing or prolonged skin contact with algae may cause illness that might include, muscle weakness, vomiting, diarrhea and/or nausea.

If you see signs of a new toxic algae bloom or for further information, please contact: Ray Hanowell at (253)798-2845 ( ), or Lindsay Tuttle at (253)798-3530 ( ), or visit the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department website at www.tpchd.org/toxicalgae .

Next Week at the Lakewood Senior Activity Center, 3/23/15

The Lakewood Senior Activity Center, located at 9112 Lakewood Drive SW, keeps a busy schedule. After all, the LSAC exists to promote healthy minds and bodies by providing recreation and social opportunities for older adults. Courses for fitness, art, writing and even computer literacy run for weeks. Day to day, there are plenty of other events freely open to the public, or with only a couple days’ advance.

Call the mainline at (253) 798-4090 to RSVP for events.

Monday, March 23

  • Fit Happens, 8 a.m.-9 a.m.
  • Instructor Judi Floyd incorporates fun choreography with low impact aerobics and light weights.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3
  • Fitness & Fun, 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
  • Enjoy this total body conditioning class that will help strengthen both your cardiovascular and muscular fitness.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3
  • SAIL Class(Stay Active and Independent for Life), 10:35 a.m.-11:35 a.m.
  • Join us for a fun hour of exercise that includes light aerobics and strength training, while focusing on balance, coordination and falls-prevention.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3  
  • Beginner and Intermediate Ballroom Dance, 4 p.m.-5 p.m.
  • Learn basic and advanced steps, techniques and choreography.
  • Mondays, March 9-April 13
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $7
  • Yoga Stretch Concepts, 5:15 p.m.-6:15 p.m.
  • Traditional yoga poses with a mix of Tai Chi and Pilates, with alternatives to accommodate mobility issues.
  • Mondays, March 9-April 13
  • Members: $28 Non-members: $41 Drop-in: $6

Tuesday, March 24

  • Zumba Gold, 9 a.m.-10:55 a.m.
  • A combination of Latin dance and low impact aerobic exercise for older adults with a little cha cha cha! Try it!
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, Feb. 17-March 26
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $5
  • Stretch and Strengthen, 10 a.m.-10:45 a.m.
  • Improve your core strength, balance and posture. Class includes warm up, muscle-specific and abdominal exercises, and stretching.
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, Feb. 17-March 26
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $5
  • Drop-in Line Dancing, 3 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
  • Every Tuesday
  • Free!

Wednesday, March 25

  • Fit Happens, 8 a.m.-9 a.m.
  • Instructor Judi Floyd incorporates fun choreography with low impact aerobics and light weights.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3
  • Fitness & Fun, 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
  • Enjoy this total body conditioning class that will help strengthen both your cardiovascular and muscular fitness.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3
  • SAIL Class(Stay Active and Independent for Life), 10:35 a.m.-11:35 a.m.
  • Join us for a fun hour of exercise that includes light aerobics and strength training, while focusing on balance, coordination and falls-prevention.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3  

Thursday, March 26

  • Zumba Gold, 9 a.m.-10:55 a.m.
  • A combination of Latin dance and low impact aerobic exercise for older adults with a little cha cha cha! Try it!
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, Feb. 17-March 26
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $5
  • Principles of Photography, 9 a.m.-11 a.m.
  • This course is designed to give the experienced, as well as the beginner photographer additional insight into the art, science and craft of photography. Learn photographic basics including composition, light, color, electronic flash, filters and lenses.
  • Thursdays, March 26-May 28
  • Members: $34 Non-members: $37
  • Stretch and Strengthen, 10 a.m.-10:45 a.m.
  • Improve your core strength, balance and posture. Class includes warm up, muscle-specific and abdominal exercises, and stretching.
  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, Feb. 17-March 26
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $5
  • Memory Social Hour: St. Patrick’s Day, 2 p.m.
  • It’s your lucky day! Join us for some luck and shamrock fun! Wear something green!
  • This is a support group for people with early stage memory loss and serves people with Alzheimer’s or dementia, their caregivers and families. It gives everyone an opportunity to be themselves in a safe, supportive and non-judgmental environment while enjoying activities and entertainment.

Friday, March 27

  • Fit Happens, 8 a.m.-9 a.m.
  • Instructor Judi Floyd incorporates fun choreography with low impact aerobics and light weights.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3
  • Fitness & Fun, 9:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m.
  • Enjoy this total body conditioning class that will help strengthen both your cardiovascular and muscular fitness.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3
  • Woodcarving, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • This class will give the beginner carving enthusiast a solid foundation in the art. It will also help you develop the skills to add a personal and creative touch to your projects. Bring your projects, tools and enthusiasm.
  • Fridays, March 27-May 29
  • Members: $48 Non-members: $53
  • Open Computer Lab, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • This computer lab is open for use by older adults who would like to practice what they have learned in classes, work on special projects and get hands-on experiencing using the computer. Volunteers are available each month to share information and answer questions.
  • Fridays
  • Free!
  • SAIL Class (Stay Active and Independent for Life), 10:35 a.m.-11:35 a.m.
  • Join us for a fun hour of exercise that includes light aerobics and strength training, while focusing on balance, coordination and falls-prevention.
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday, Feb. 18-March 27
  • Members: $32 Non-members: $37 Drop-in: $3  

Lakewood City Council Passes Tax Incentive Measures

The Lakewood City Council unanimously passed two measures related to tax-incentive programs near the Lakewood Station on 11424 Pacific Hwy SW at its March 16, 2015 meeting.

The first ordinance designated the area encompassing the Lakewood Station a tax incentive urban use center. The new designation establishes a multifamily tax exemption program in area. The exemption applies to the new housing improvement portion of the property taxes. Owners who make eligible housing improvements will be exempt from any tax increases related to those improvements for a period of 8 to 12 years. Owners will continue to pay the pre-improvement taxes on both the land and structure. Originally proposed on Jan. 26, 2015, a public hearing on March 2 cleared the Lakewood Station Area for meeting the necessary criteria.

Next, the City Council passed a related resolution to designate some the area within the tax incentive urban use center as a residential target area. The resolution adds a tax exemption for eligible multifamily housing around the Lakewood Station from all value added property taxation for the exemption period. This includes the City, State and other special district valuations. The tax exemption only applies to the improvement value of the residential portion of a property. Taxes would still be paid on the land and on the improvement value of any non-residential uses. Economic benefits from initiating new development, such as development contributions to infrastructure, sales tax, and business revenue are expected to help offset the reduction in revenue from the tax exemptions.

Designating a residential target area requires a number of criteria, including the prior existence of a tax incentive urban use center. The area around Lakewood Station was chosen in part because there has been little redevelopment in its residential sections since Lakewood was incorporated. Redevelopment opportunities have been stymied by the blighted conditions of some properties, the lack of infrastructure, and the downturn in the housing market. New housing under modern zoning requirements will improve the quality of life and remove substandard housing. The new designations could revitalize an older neighborhood.

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