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City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 7/17/09

July 17, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Adopt-a-Company Program: Lakewood's Connector Brigade at Ft. Lewis (4-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team) is deploying again to Iraq in September. The brigade has an initiative underway in which local organizations or businesses can adopt one of the brigade's 30 teams. The commitment is modest - organizations would simply be expected to engage in correspondence with a company (between 50-100+ Soldiers) by sharing emails and photos on a somewhat regular basis. The Lakewood Chamber of Commerce is spearheading the effort on behalf of the Lakewood business community. The City of Lakewood will be hosting a "meet and greet" event in the Council Chambers on Tuesday, July 21st at 6pm. Interested organizations are encouraged to call the Chamber at (253) 582-9400 as soon as possible.
  • City awarded US Commerce Dept Grant for Census: The City's Human Services and Information Systems Divisions have been coordinating Census efforts, and the City has been awarded $2,999 for promoting the 2010 Census, the highest grant award available from the U.S. Department of Commerce. An accurate Census count ensures the City to receive our representative share of the more than $300 billion in federal funds that are awarded to states and communities based on census data. The grant will be used for promotional items to be distributed at upcoming community events sponsored by the City of Lakewood, Clover Park School District, and several human service agencies throughout Lakewood. These events include the Ready to Learn Fair on August 15th, the All City Tailgate on September 11th, and two Easter events in March 2010.
  • Dedication of 4-2 SBCT Memorial. Mayor-emeritus Bill Harrison represented the City of Lakewood at the unveiling of the 4-2 Stryker Brigade's beautiful new memorial at "Reflection Park" at Ft. Lewis. Reflection Park was dedicated later that day. During this moving and somber ceremony, former 4-2 SBCT commander Colonel Jon Lehr thanked the Lakewood community for its loyal support. The brigade lost 54 Soldiers during its 15-month deployment that ended early last summer. A photo of the new memorial will be posted in the upcoming Lakewood Connections (mid-August).
  • 3rd Annual Lakewood PD Golf Tournament held for Special Olympics: The 3rd annual Lakewood PD Golf Tournament benefiting Special Olympics was held this last Saturday at the Oakbrook Golf & Country Club. Participants included Deputy Mayor Anderson, Police Chief Farrar, and Special Olympics board member Dino Rossi. There were 88 golfers and numerous volunteers that made this year's event a great success. The Golf Tournament raised approximately $14,000 which brings the total fund raising effort this year to over $20,000. There are still many upcoming events such as the Tip-a-Cop at the new Lakewood Red Robin, the Go Cart Grand Prix race and hopefully a Polar Plunge at the start of the year.
  • Police Dept Awards Ceremony: LPD conducted its annual department awards reception this week, and Chief Farrar and Asst Chief Zaro presented special recognition awards to officers, employees, and citizens for exemplary service. Two citizen commendations were presented to Nicholas Bogajczyk, a postal worker, and Bill and Jamie Stuarts, apartment managers, for their conscientious assistance to Police. Chief's commendations were presented to Investigator Martin Knott, CSO Dawn McGinnis, Officer Ryan Hamilton, LT Alex Kasuske, SGT John Unfred, SGT Bryan Norton, Officer Brian Wurts, and Detective Jeff Paynter. The Chief's Citation was presented to Animal Control Officer Correne Buck. The Lifesaving Award was presented to Officers Jeff Johnson, Tina Griswold, and Oscar Maysonet, as well as to Officers Jeff Hall and Jim Lofland, Officer Mike Johnson and SGT Mark Eakes, and also to SGT John Fraser. The Core Value Award was presented to Officer Mike Russell. Pierce County Deputies M Lundborg and Ed Roberts were also presented with the award for Lifesaving.
  • Sex Offender Policy Board. The city manager participated as the Association of Washington Cities' rep in meetings of the Sex Offender Policy Board (SOPB), and also the Sex Offenders in the Community committee of the SOPB in Seattle on July 16th. The SOPB will be reporting back to the governor and legislature for policy recommendations and is currently reviewing programs from a number of other states. The city manager will be hosting a committee meeting in Lakewood in August at which time Lakewood Police will showcase its monitoring program, its relationship with Dept of Corrections (DOC) and selected apartment managers, as well as its Crime Free Housing Program.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 7/10/09

July 10, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • City Receives AWC Well City Award: The City of Lakewood was honored with the WellCity Award by the Association of Washington Cities (AWC). Lakewood was one of 34 Washington cities and towns that received recognition for its workplace wellness program at the Association's Annual Conference. The AWC WellCity Award recognizes cities and towns that demonstrate best practices in employee health promotion. A city must meet the minimum criteria in each of 9 WellCity standards to receive the award.
  • Center for Domestic Preparedness Training for Lakewood Police: Lt. Steve Mauer went to Alabama the week of June 21 for federally-funded training at the Center for Domestic Preparedness. The Center provides training in all areas of civil disturbance and weapons of mass destruction for first responders from all over the US and other countries. The class included three days dedicated to learning about protestor devices used to block roadways and entrances to buildings, and then two days at the "COBRA" center with emphasis on chemical weapons and the equipment used by responders to work at the scene to treat and assess victims and decontaminate them for further treatment. The class included going into training bays in full chemical Suits and mask where we were exposed to chemicals such as Saran gas that was used in the Japanese subways several years ago by an extremist group.
  • Shooter training sessions at local elementary school: The Police Department conducted the first of four active shooter training sessions at Oakbrook Elementary School on July 1st. The training is designed to prepare officers for response to situations such as Columbine and Virginia Tech and is instructed by officers from Metro SWAT, the multi-jurisdictional tactical team. We currently have 4 other agencies participating with us in the training, with two more agencies planning to participate in 2010, in our effort to provide regional training in this discipline.
  • Police attend Georgia Police Accreditation Coalition Conference: Officer Jeff Carroll attended the Georgia Police Accreditation Coalition Conference in Georgia June 22-25 as a VIP as the President of the Northwest Police Accreditation Coalition. The conference included classes on Ethics, Leadership, Accreditation, and Use of Force; and all expenses were paid for by the NWPAC.
  • Training to parenting group at Bates Vocational School: Safety CSOs Sandi Stauffer and Gail Conelly attended a parenting group session at Bates Vocational School and gave a presentation on Child Passenger Safety and Keeping Your Kids Safe to 15 parents and small children.
  • KAPAG Youth Safety Camp: LPD and the Korean American Police Advisory Group (KAPAG) had another successful year of Youth Safety Camp, with about 80 kids and other parents and adults. We taught Personal Values and Ethics, Traffic Safety, Reckless Driving/Road Rage/Racing Prevention, Gang Awareness, Drug Awareness, Mock Court, Criminal Laws, Calling 911, SWAT Presentation, K-9 Presentation, Explorer Presentation and many others. Officer Brian Wurts, Officer Austin Lee, CSO Dawn McGinnis, and KAPAG members were able to facilitate this 10 hour course with no injuries or incidents.
  • Court of Appeals Decision Rendered: The Court of Appeals issued a decision in favor of the City of Lakewood in a public records case this week. The case dates back to December 2006 when the City was sued for withholding public records. In April 2008, the Superior Court entered a decision finding in favor of the requestor and imposed a monetary penalty of approximately $13,000 plus attorney fees, significantly less than the over $63,000 plus attorney fees which was sought. The requestor appealed. The Court of Appeals affirmed the Superior Court decision, concluding that the requestor was not entitled to additional penalties, attorney fees or other recoveries. The City was represented on appeal by Associate City Attorney Matt Kaser.
  • Soccer and basketballs for Kick for Nick Foundation: CSO Dawn McGinnis collected more than 20 soccer and basketballs for the "Kick for Nick" Foundation. The balls were signed by members of LPD then delivered to Bonney Lake Fire Department on July 2nd. The "Kick for Nick" Foundation was created in memory of United States Army Private First Class Nick Madaras, who had dedicated himself to the sport of soccer, and was killed in action in 2006 at age 19 in Iraq.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 6/19/09

June 19, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Don't miss SummerFEST '09! This event will be held Saturday, June 20th and Sunday, June 21st at Fort Steilacoom Park. Festivities on Saturday begin at noon and end with the showing of The Express on the big screen presented by Comcast! Saturday activities include live music on two stages, over 100 food, arts and craft and service vendors, Army Strong Fitness Expo, Partners for Parks Car Show, a Kidz Zone inflatable area, Clinics by the Seahawks, Rainiers, Sounders, Storm, and Seagals, Game Matrix, pony rides, a super slide, a soccer tournament, r/c boat races and much more! Sunday activities will begin at 8:30 with registration for the Father's Day 5K Fun Run - race time is at 10:00 a.m. From 9:00 a.m. - Noon you can enjoy the Army Strong Fitness Expo complete with Boot Camp fitness sessions, fitness competitions, basketball toss, body fat measurements and thunderbirds hockey Inflatable. For more information, please visit us at
  • City Staff and School District Discuss Neighborhood School Park Pilot Project: Last week, City of Lakewood and Clover Park School District staff met with neighbors surrounding Lake Louise Elementary School to discuss the neighborhood school park pilot project. Staff reviewed the history of the project, site selection criteria, project timeline, site improvements and how to participate in a neighborhood block watch program. Construction of a new playground structure and swings, ¼ mile walking trail, access improvements and other site amenities is anticipated the week of July 13-17, 2009.
  • Countywide federal grant funding approved for street projects: At the June 18th Pierce County Regional Council meeting, the PCRC approved their Transportation Coordinating Committee's recommended project list for Countywide federal grant funding. Included in the approved list are two Lakewood projects: Bridgeport Way improvement from Steilacoom Blvd to 83rd St ($750,000 grant award) and 100th St improvement from Gravelly Lake Dr to 59th Ave ($867,000 grant award). Final approval rests with Puget Sound Regional Council which shouldn't be an issue.
  • LPD attends Undercover Operations Training: Detective Ryan Larson completed a week's worth of training with the FBI, in a class called Undercover Operation. This training on the east coast is at no cost to the City.
  • LPD staff gives presentation to NARPM: CSO Mike Miller was invited on June 17th to address a meeting of the National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM) regarding personal safety of property managers and staff; Crime Free Housing; and Crime Prevention through Environmental Design concepts (CPTED). The attendees were all professional property managers or owners, and they appreciated the examples used from actual events here in the Lakewood apartment community.
  • CABC Leadership Forum: On June 16th, Mayor Richardson, the city manager and city attorney conducted a "leadership forum" for all interested Citizens Advisory Board and Committee (CABC) members and supporting City staff. Twenty-two CABC members participated and received refresher training on open government requirements, the conduct of public meetings, and what it means to be a good board member. The forum also identified the respective roles of CABCs, the Council, and the staff. City staff support fourteen boards and committees; twelve of these advise the Council on policies and/or recommended City priorities. The two exceptions are the Civil Service Commission and the Lakewood Sister Cities Association.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 6/26/09

June 26, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Association of Washington Cities Annual Meeting: Council Members Finnigan and Neary, the city manager, and communications director Jeff Brewster attended the AWC's annual conference in Spokane this week with 400 participants representing cities around the state. Key speakers included Rogers Weed, the newly-appointed director of the State's new Department of Commerce (formerly CTED). Work sessions covered numerous subjects ranging from fiscal planning to positioning for economic recovery, public safety, leadership and economic development. Councilmember Neary was a presenter on Citizen Communication, and the city manager participated in the selection and appointment of the new AWC CEO, Mike McCarty.
  • SummerFEST 2009: The 2009 SummerFest was a success in all aspects. Attendance was up, with approximate numbers leaning around 10,000. The Kids Zone which included a rock climbing wall and air supported inflatable's had just over 800 kids participate. The two stages of entertainment had crowds throughout the day. A new addition this year came from the Tacoma Company of Army Recruiters, who put on a Fitness Expo for people of all ages. The marketing team for the Army also brought various sports teams from around the area to conduct youth clinics and sign autographs for the children. Teams included: Seahawks, Sounders, Rainiers, Storm and Seagals. This was a great addition for the kids. The event finished off Saturday with an outdoor movie. On Sunday there was an Army Strong 5k Father's Day Run that attracted over 200 participants.
  • Lakewood Police Dept hosts Narcotics Investigation training course: Lakewood Police hosted a Mid-Level Narcotics Investigation training course this week. The curriculum included intelligence gathering techniques, the structure of drug organizations, informant control and management, as well as other more law enforcement sensitive subjects. As the hosting agency, we received 5 free slots saving the department about $1,000. The new police facility allows for a much improved emphasis on training and development.
  • Police Marine Services attends CJTC Course: The entire Marine Services Unit (MSU) attended and completed a 24-hour Criminal Justice Training Center (CJTC) course in Boating under the Influence (BUI) detection and arrests. The course was sponsored by the Washington State Parks and held in Puyallup on June 10-12.
  • Gang presentation to Lakewood 1st Lions: Officer Crommes gave a Gang Presentation for the 1st Lions Club on June with about 25 people in attendance.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 6/12/09

June 12, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Police versus Fire Basketball: The LPD vs. LFD Charity Game was a close game (with Fire winning in overtime), and an overall success with $5,000+ raised for the LPIG Charity Fund and LFD Life Safety Charity Fund.
  • Update on sewer pre-treatment review: Senior staff from Pierce County Public Works & Utilities met on June 8th with the city manager and senior City staff from Lakewood Community Development and Public Works to discuss strategies for closer coordination and expediting the sewer pretreatment component of building permitting process. A review of recent development projects indicated that 30 or 38 minor permits were "fast-tracked" with a 3-day turnaround. The asst city manager/development will develop protocols for enhanced coordination between the City's building official and the County to ensure further efficiencies.
  • AWC CEO Selection: The city manager participated this week with the executive committee of AWC (Association of Washington Cities) in the interview process for 5 finalists for the new CEO position. The goal is to finalize the appointment of the CEO at the upcoming AWC conference on June 23rd in Spokane. AWC represents all 281 cities and towns in Washington State at both the state and federal legislative levels and with training and insurance services.
  • Safety Fair at Hope Center: CSO Kevin Pressel, with the assistance of the rest of the COPS unit, organized a Safety Fair at the HOPE center on June 3rd, and over 200 kids attended the 4-hour event. Kids got to meet Police Officers, Firefighters, and Animal Control, and they got to spray each other with water from the fire truck, sit in the police cars, the SWAT armored vehicle, and the MSU watercraft. Other participants included Lakewood Fire, Boys and Girls Club, PC Dept of Emergency Management, and the Law Enforcement Support Agency.