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City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 8/21/09

August 21, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Bridgeport Way Improvement project (59th Ave to Steilacoom Blvd): On Monday, August 24th , the traffic signal controller cabinet at Bridgeport Way and 59th Ave which also controls the signal at Bridgeport Way and Mt Tacoma Dr will be replaced. The replacement will cause both traffic signals to be dark for a majority of the day. While dark signals are treated as an all-way stop control intersection, we will have flaggers along with off-duty officers directing traffic at the Bridgeport Way and 59th Ave intersection. Mt Tacoma Dr. will be limited to local traffic only and its intersection with Bridgeport Way will be restricted to right-in and right-out movements. Motorists should expect delays at these intersections.
  • Lakewood Drive Pavement Rehabilitation project (Bridgeport Way to 100th St): Construction work starts on Monday, August 24th. Lakewood Drive, however, will be open to thru traffic although lane restrictions will be in place.
  • Bridgeport at Pac Hwy lane closure: Lakewood Water District will be cutting in a water valve on Bridgeport just north of the railroad tracks in the outside southbound lane Sunday August 23rd (from 8am to 5pm) to minimize traffic impacts.
  • City Coordinates Meeting With Lakeview Businesses: Asst Chief Mike Zaro, Sgt John Unfred and CSO Dawn McGinnis coordinated a meeting between the Lakeview Avenue businesses and Sound Transit regarding progress on the railroad work and how it will impact the businesses.
  • LPD sponsors 4/2 Stryker Brigade Unit during deployment to Iraq: The Lakewood Police Department is proud to sponsor a unit of the 4/2 Stryker Brigade during their deployment to Iraq, joining other local companies who have stepped up to support the brigade in this Lakewood Chamber of Commerce-sponsored program. Local businesses have agreed to sponsor individual Companies of the brigade, by supporting support both the soldiers as well as the families at home during the deployment.
  • City Manager at State City Managers Conference: The city manager joined 80 others in attending the annual meeting this week of the Washington City Managers (WCMA) Association in Leavenworth. The agenda included emphasis on sustainable fiscal planning, and economic recovery strategies. The city manager is WCMA past president and a member of the board.
  • Lakewood group reaches the top of Mt St. Helens: A City Parks & Recreation-sponsored overnight program featuring a climb to the summit of Mount St. Helens took place on August 15 -16 -- with all the climbers reaching the crater rim of the mountain. With the clouds below, the eight climbers had outstanding views of Mt. Rainier, Mt. Adams, Mt. Hood, and Mt. Jefferson and could even see the Sisters in central Oregon. The trip began with a tour inside Ape Cave on the southern slope of the mountain. It was a great accomplishment for all the participants.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 8/14/09

August 14, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Police Training for Rape Defense: The Lakewood Police Department hosted the RAD program (Rape Aggression Defense Systems) on August 10-12. This program was presented by Kathy Wright, who is an instructor with the RAD program, and there were over 25 participants to include Fort Lewis and McChord, and Correne Buck and Dawn McGinnis of LPD. This is an intense 3-day 30-hour course which includes physical defense work outs, and exercise designed to confront confrontational circumstances. Its purpose is to certify instructors who can teach basic self defense techniques to women in the community
  • Senior Center Summer Fiesta: The Lakewood Senior Activity Center was celebrating summer - fiesta style - on August 3rd. Over 100 members and guests gathered together to rejoice in this special season. Participants were greeted with festive colors, serenades, sombreros, special friends and an enormous array of tasty food. Parks and Recreation department staff was on hand to cook hamburgers and hotdogs for a very appreciative group.
  • Association of Defense Communities (ADC) Conference: Asst City Manager David Bugher and Project Manager Dan Penrose attended the Association of Defense Communities annual conference in Boston last week, with the theme --- "Military Communities: Responding to Change". The conference brought community representatives from around the nation together with experts from the Department of Defense, federal and state agencies to share their experiences and strategies in partnering with the military bases. Lakewood staff had several opportunities to discuss Ft. Lewis growth impacts with high level leadership, including the Deputy Chief of the Army's Base Realignment and Closures (BRAC) division, the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Installations, and the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Installation and Environment. The ADC conference was part of Lakewood's grant from the Defense Dept's Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA) which will be funding the planning for military base impacts.
  • Driver training exercise: 25 police employees received driving training in the parking lot of Lakewood Towne Center on August 12th. The training consisted of slow speed, and placement driving. Employees had to maneuver their vehicle forwards and backwards through the course without striking a cone.
  • Employment Security Commissioner welcomed to Lakewood: The city manager welcomed Karen Turner Lee, the State's Commissioner of Employment Security, back to Lakewood as she was the speaker at Lakewood Rotary on August 14th. Commissioner Lee is from Lakewood and is a graduate of Clover Park High School. In her presentation, she covered unemployment and income statistics from Lakewood and around the County and the State. The Employment Security office is now a neighbor of Lakewood City Hall, in the adjacent building which also houses DSHS.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 7/31/09

July 31, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Woodbrook/Tillicum Sewer Project: The contractor, NW Cascade, will be working Friday night (from 7:00 PM through 5:00 AM Saturday) at the intersection of Murray Road and 146th to set a manhole. There will be one travel lane accessible through this intersection through the duration of the work with traffic control flaggers on each end. The work is necessary to do at night due to the high volumes of traffic into and out of Woodbrook and given that this is the only access to and from the neighborhood. Variable message signs will be set to inform drivers in addition door hangers will be provided to adjacent residents.
  • Gas Main Replacement continues: PSE's contractor who is replacing the gas main on Bridgeport Way from 115th to 111th will continue that night work through next week.
  • LPD Ass't Chief accepted into 2010 FBI National Academy: Ass't Chief Mike Zaro has been accepted into the January 2010 class of the FBI's National Academy. The National Academy is a police executive leadership course. Selection for the National Academy is a very selective and lengthy process, and Ass't Chief Zaro is the first from our department to attend. His experience will enhance his knowledge and abilities and provide further opportunities and resources for the Police Department.
  • Sound Transit D to M Project: Councilmember (and Sound Transit Board Co-Chair) Claudia Thomas and the city manager participated in a meeting this week with citizens and officials of the City of Tacoma as the Sound Transit staff reviewed the specific construction plans for the D to M Street connector for commuter rail service to South Tacoma and Lakewood. The design effort is currently at the 75 percent level, and the targeted bidding date is December 2009. Construction is estimated at 22 months, with testing scheduled for December 2011.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 8/7/09

August 7, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Chip Seal Work Starts Monday: Come Monday, weather permitting; the County road crews will begin this year’s chip sealing work. The roads to be chip sealed are within the northeast quadrant of the City which is bounded by I-5 on the east, 83rd St on the north, Tacoma Way S on the west and 96th St on the South. A total of approximately 14 miles of roadway will be chip sealed and once the work starts it should only take 4 days to complete. Affected property owners and residents of the area have been notified. The only road out side the described area that will also be chip sealed is 94th St which runs westerly from Tacoma Way S and ends at 39th Ave.
  • National Night Out A Great Success: Lakewood had 38 events for the National Night Out (against crime) celebration on August 4th, attended by approximately 2,000 people who consumed just over 3,000 hotdogs, 1,000 hamburgers, and 1,500 popsicles. Several councilmembers, the city manager, police chief, and communications director attended numerous events. Investigator Martin Knott escorted members of the Lakewood African American Police Advisory Committee (LAAPAC) around for NNO, and they attended five BBQ's in Districts 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6. Sgt John Unfred and his crew did a great job putting this event together. In addition to Police support, the Lakewood Fire Department participated, as did a number of corporate sponsors.
  • City riders do the Courage Classic: Seven City employees joined 750 other riders as they completed the annual Rotary-sponsored Courage Classic last week. The three-day bike ride covers about 180 miles over significant elevation gain through three mountain passes: Snoqualmie, Blewett, and Stevens: its goal is to raise funds for the Child Sexual Assault Clinic at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital. This year, Lakewood was well represented by Greg Vigoren, Heidi Wachter, Marc Amrine, Nadine Mitsch, Michelle Hector, Mark Eakes, and Diana Halar. The unusually warm weather added to the challenge of the ride.

City Managers Weekly Info Bulletin 7/24/09

July 24, 2009
To: Mayor and Members of the City Council
From: Andrew Neiditz, City Manager

  • Volunteers receive Police Department Awards: At the LPD awards reception last week, Chief Farrar and Asst Chief Zaro presented special awards to officers, employees, citizens and citizen volunteers for exemplary service. The Presidential Volunteer Award was presented to Robert Pack, Mike Kanter, Sharron Kanter, Kristy Kernen, Maddie Wivel and Alvie Robbins. Kristy Kernen also received the Lifetime Achievement award based on the overall 5,000 hours of service. Chaplain Walt Kellcy was given a plaque retiring his unit number 701 in appreciation for his service to Lakewood Police.
  • National Night Out on August 4th: The Lakewood Observation Patrol will be hosting the National Night Out this year on August 4th. Council members are invited to attend the 3:30pm kick off at the Police Station.
  • LPD to conduct Open Defensive Tactics Training for other cities: Lakewood Police Dept is running open Defensive Tactics (DT) training next week with officers from several agencies attending. Officer Barnard assisted DuPont PD with their DT training event, and Detective Jeff Paynter will be assisting Steilacoom PD next with their training event.
  • AWC Board Retreat: The city manager participated this week with 20 other AWC boardmembers in the Association of Washington Cities (AWC) retreat to review the strategic plan and focus for the association and its new chief executive officer. AWC represents all 281 cities and towns in Washington State.
  • Meeting with Health Director: The city manager met with the director of the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, Dr. Anthony Chen, on July 16th to review areas of joint concern and cooperation between the City and the department. Discussion of the sewer line extension to Tillicum and Woodbrook as a means of improving environmental quality was discussed, as was the City's proposed non-motorized transportation plan.
  • TPU Franchise Reviews: The city manager met with the director of Tacoma Public Utilities on July 17th to review the status of franchise agreements for both water and power. TPU provides minimal water service to the northeast corner of the city, but is a major provider of electric power to about a third of the city.