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City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 4/26/2013

April 26, 2013
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Heidi Wachter, Interim City Manager

  • Council Priority: Develop a vision for the City Center
    • Lane Bryant Opened in Towne Center: A “Soft” opening of the new store occurred on Thursday. They officially opened on Friday to welcome shoppers and provide a new niche shopping experience. Be sure to stop by the store and take a look.
  • Council Priority: Maintain and enhance public safety
    • City Meets with Lakefront Homeowners: Mayor Don Anderson and a neighborhood policing team attended a community meeting with lakefront homeowners associations on April 16 at the Tacoma Golf and Country Club to discuss crime trends and crime prevention. Mayor Anderson talked about the versatility of the Community Safety and Resources Team (CSRT) in addressing neighborhood concerns with crime, blight, and nuisances and encouraged all neighborhoods to continue communicating with the City to address these issues.
  • Council Priority: Continue cooperative partnership with educational institutions in Lakewood
    • Pierce College New Learning Environments: Pierce College President Denise Yochum invited economic development staff to a tour of the beautiful and inviting new facilities at Pierce College. Creative learning environments have been established that engage for the students and faculty from the library, outside education space, new planetarium, and amazing health and sciences building. They are embarking on a test pilot project based on how students learn today and into the future. The planetarium currently has programs and shows available to the public with additional sessions planned for people of all ages. Visit the site for additional information and to purchase tickets here: .
  • Council Priority: Protect the capital investment in the transportation system through adequate maintenance and preservation of facilities
    • North Gate Road Area – Open House – Tuesday, April 30, 2013, 6 PM: A public open house will be hosted by public works and police staff on Tuesday, April 30, 2013 at 6 PM at the Harrison Prep gym for follow up information sharing and discussion on the North Gate Road area traffic issues. Staff will present results of recent traffic revisions and discuss additional traffic revisions and traffic calming measures that may be implemented to mitigate the cut-thru and speeding traffic.
    • Nyanza Road PSE Gas Main Replacement – Starting Next Week: Infrasource, a PSE contractor, will be completing gas main replacement on the entire length of Nyanza Road. Work will commence next week and take approximately 8 weeks to complete. Through traffic will be maintained during the construction with temporary lane diversions during working hours. Pavement cuts in the new overlay at Gravelly Lake Drive will be mitigated by a full width overlay and additional pavement repairs on previous gas main work completed on Nyanza Road.
  • Other items of interest:
    • USGA Open Championship Briefing: Economic development staff attended a USGA Open Championship briefing at Chambers Bay Golf Course this week. Denise Dyer, Pierce County Economic Development Director, Kevin Phelps, Deputy Pierce County Executive, and Danny Sink, the Championship Director for the United States Golf Association, each outlined the “Road to the Open” – only 779 days from Friday, April 26, 2013. Frequently asked questions and answers about the Open are at . In addition, a Championship timeline was provided as well as a U.S. Open Chambers Bay Fact Sheet; that information is available on Pierce County’s website with additional information at
    • 2013 Pierce County Export Forum: The 2013 Pierce County Export Forum was held at the Environmental Services Building on Friday. Attendees learned about what they should know before entering foreign markets, new products/developments in export finance, speaking the language of commerce, the role of social media, freight forwarding trends, and making the decision to export. Panel experts and exhibitors were on hand to assist businesses. Washington State is the third largest exporter of food and agriculture products in the United States. Total exports increased by over 16% from 2011 to 2012, and by far our largest state export items are civilian aircraft, engines, and parts topping $36.7 Billion in 2012.
    • Youth Council Recruitment Dinner: The current Youth Council held a recruitment dinner for potential new members Wednesday evening, April 24th. The dinner was hosted by Councilmember Barth with Councilmember Brandstetter also in attendance. The food was supplied by Lt. Mauer and his wife Andie and was purchased through a United Way fundraiser for the city. Potential members heard from both councilmember’s about the importance of their input to the City Council and the positive impact they can have in the community. Current and potential members had the opportunity to ask questions and engage in dialogue regarding youth involvement in our city. Applications are currently being accepted until Friday, May 3rd, 5:00 p.m. The position announcement is available on the city website:

City reminds dog owners to respect leash laws

Ten years ago, the City of Lakewood collaborated with Protect our Pets (POP) and many other organizations to dedicate and fence 22 acres of Fort Steilacoom Park for an off leash dog park. The dog park allows dogs of all shapes and sizes to run unleashed and to socialize with other dogs. This park continues to earn rave reviews including “Best dog park in the South Sound” recognition for the last few years.

As the weather warms up, more people will take advantage of Lakewood’s beautiful parks. The City wants to remind all dog owners to leash their animals anytime they are outside the dog park or in any City Park. Lakewood Municipal Code 08.76.330 states that dogs, pets, or domestic animals are not permitted off-leash on any designated swimming beach, picnic area, play areas or any other park area in any city park except in those areas specifically identified with signs posted indicating that animals are permitted off-leash. The city also reminds pet owners about their obligations to clean up after Fido. It is always a good idea to carry a plastic bag or two when walking your pets in the park or down your street.

The City receives occasional complaints from park users about aggressive and unleashed dogs and dog owners who seem indifferent to the law. The City’s animal control and other law enforcement personnel will continue public education efforts and enforcement on leash laws this spring and beyond. The City appreciates everyone’s cooperation in respecting our laws and the rights of all residents to enjoy our parks.

Lakewood Employees Continue Learning

Two Lakewood Employees Earn National Economic Development Council Certification

Rebecca Newton and Jeff Gumm with the City of Lakewood received certifications as Economic Development Finance Professionals (EDFP) from the National Development Council (NDC).

EDFP Certification is a professional credential given to individuals who successfully complete NDC’s intensive economic development finance training series. The training provides individuals working in the field of economic development with instruction in business credit analysis, real estate financing, loan packaging, deal structuring and negotiating, and the creation and implementation of development programs. Each of the four EDFP certification program courses is five days in length and concludes with an exam. Upon successful completion of all four courses, the candidate is awarded EDFP certification.

Newton is an economic development specialist with the City of Lakewood bringing nearly a decade of economic development experience. Hired in 2011, Newton’s primary focus has been on business retention and expansion. In addition, Newton assists with startup companies and works with businesses looking to expand or relocate to Lakewood. She provides access to procurement and technical assistance and connection to resources. Her background includes fifteen years in private for-profit advertising and marketing and eight years in private non-profit work.

Gumm as a grants program manager with the City of Lakewood and is responsible for managing multiple federal grant programs focusing on economic development, community development and targeted low-income housing. Employed with the City of Lakewood since 2002, Gumm oversees the development of multiple housing and community development projects. Recently, he took on the City’s Section 108 economic development loan program designed to create and expand job opportunities for low-income individuals through business retention and expansion.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 4/19/2013

April 19, 2013
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Heidi Wachter, Interim City Manager

  • Council Priority: Develop a vision for parks and public spaces to improve quality of life and attract residents
    • Parks and Recreation Staff attend WRPA Annual Conference: Parks, Recreation and Community Services staff attended the Washington Recreation and Park Association (WRPA) Annual Conference in Vancouver, Washington, April 16th – 18th, 2013.
  • Council Priority: Sustain regional leadership and coordinate with military partners
    • Mayor Attends JBLM’s “Community Listening Session”: Mayor Anderson, Interim City Manager Wachter, and other senior staff attended a workshop hosted by Lt. Gen. Robert Brown at the Eagle’s Pride Golf Course on Thursday. The purpose of the session was for local communities to provide input and learn about how Army downsizing could affect JBLM. The Active Army will reduce its end strength from about 570,000 to 490,000 soldiers by the end of fiscal year 2017 through attrition and reductions in force. JBLM could lose as many as 8,000 soldiers. The Army will not likely make any decisions on cuts until this summer. Those cuts would be phased over a four-year period.
  • Council Priority: Protect the capital investment in the transportation system through adequate maintenance and preservation of facilities
    • City Participates in I-5 Interchange Planning Meeting: Public Works staff recently participated in a “technical stakeholder meeting” with other regional partners to discuss I-5 interchange upgrades along the I-5 corridor between Lakewood and JBLM. Staff reviewed the final drafts of the “Project Charter and Methods and Assumptions” document which will be used to establish traffic modeling. The group will meet next in May to review modeling results and alternatives.
  • Other items of interest:
    • Interim City Manager is speaker at Lakewood Rotary: This week, Interim City Manager Heidi Wachter was the guest speaker at the Lakewood Rotary and gave a presentation on the “State of the City”. She will be making similar presentations next week at the Lakewood First Lions Club and the Clover Park Kiwanis Club.
    • Coffee with the Mayor: On Tuesday, April 16th, Assistant City Manager Dave Bugher was the guest speaker at Coffee with the Mayor. He gave an update on the redevelopment of the I-5 corridor.
    • Lakewood Toastmasters host Speech Contest: Lakewood Toastmasters is hosting the first-ever Area Speech Contest this evening in the City Hall Council Chambers. The Lakewood Toastmasters Club started as an employee’s only club but has since expanded to include the greater Lakewood community and continues to recruit members. Visitors are welcome to attend their meetings held every Tuesday at noon in the Lakewood Council Chambers.

Volunteer to Paint Tacoma-Pierce Beautiful