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City Offices Closed for Thanksgiving

In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, Lakewood City Hall and the Lakewood Police Station will be closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 27-28.

If you have an after-hours, Public Works-related emergency, please contact (253) 267-1628. If you have an after-hours, Police-related matter, contact (253) 830-5000 or 911 if it’s an emergency.

West Pierce Fire & Rescue: Celebrate the Holidays Safely

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and West Pierce Fire & Rescue would like to remind residents to be safe this holiday.  Cooking fires are one of the leading causes of residential fires, so please remember these tips while in the kitchen.

  • Do not leave the kitchen while food is cooking on the stove.  Stovetop fires are very common and can quickly get out of hand.  If you need to leave the kitchen for any reason, take a spatula or wooden spoon with you to remind yourself that something is on the stove.
  • Be sure to wear fitted clothing while cooking.  Loose sleeves can quickly catch fire when reaching over the stove and burners.
  • Use a timer when cooking.  To avoid burnt food or forgetting something is in the oven, a timer is a great tool to use.  This also greatly reduces the risk of a kitchen fire.

Turkey fryers have become increasingly popular this holiday.  While delicious, turkey fryers cause many home fires.  Besides fires, devastating burns and other injuries can be sustained by using these types of equipment.  The National Fire Protection Association offers the following information about the dangers of turkey fryers.

  • Hot oil may splash or spill during cooking.  Contact between hot oil and skin could result in serious injury.
  • In deep frying, oil is heated to temperatures of 350° Fahrenheit or more. Cooking oil is combustible. If it is heated above its cooking temperature, its vapors can ignite.
  • Propane-fired turkey fryers must be used outdoors.  Many parts of the country may have rain or snow at this time of year. If rain or snow hits the hot cooking oil, the oil may splatter or turn to steam, leading to burns.
  • Turkeys must be completely thawed before placing in the fryer, because a partially thawed turkey will cause the oil to splatter causing serious burns.
  • The fryers use a lot of oil, about five gallons. Considering the size and weight of the turkey, extreme caution must be taken when placing and removing the turkey from the fryer to be sure its is not dropped back into the fryer, splattering the oil on the chef.

West Pierce Fire & Rescue wishes all residents a happy and safe Thanksgiving holiday. 

Jingle Bell Rock Your Ugly Sweater 5K

Hey Lakewood residents! Have you been so busy crafting your ugly, er, holiday sweater that you’ve forgotten to register for the City of Lakewood’s 3rd Annual Jingle Bell Rock Your Ugly Sweater 5K on Dec. 6?

Well, worry not because this weekend, registration for the Jingle Bell Rock 5K is only $20. That's right, on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 21-23, you can save $5 off your registration!

Each registration includes a timing chip, an awesome t-shirt and no less than one million (we've counted) selfie opportunities for you, your friends and your ugly sweaters! Register by calling the Parks and Recreation Department at (253) 983-7887 or checking us out online at:https://apm.activecommunities.com/lakewoodparksandrec/Activity_Search/jingle-bell-rock-5k/2602 .

So sign-up and get together with your friends to put the finishing touches on that holiday fashion disaster, uh, masterpiece. Or, dig out that old sweater that you haven’t donned since the Christmas your grandparents gave it to you, and wear it on the day of the 5K.

The City's annual holiday run (you can walk or jog too) is a partnership with the community and a way to bring the residents of Lakewood together. As in years past, St. Clare Hospital is a presenting sponsor of the Jingle Bell Rock 5K. This year, the Lakewood hospital is joined by sponsor Drangsholt Orthodontics. Last year’s attendees might remember Drangsholt Orthodontics’ water stop, where runners could grab some refreshments and a free jingle bell.

"It’s about everyone out there having fun in their Christmas sweaters,” said Arielle Carney, Lakewood Parks and Recreation Coordinator.

City Manager's Weekly Info Bulletin 11/21/2014

Nov. 21, 2014

WEEKLY INFO BULLETIN

To: Mayor and Members of the City Council

From: John J. Caulfield, City Manager

Topics of Interest and Updates

City Council Adopts 2015-16 Annual Budget

On Monday, Nov. 17, the Lakewood City Council unanimously adopted its 2015-2016 Biennial Budget. It is a balanced budget that results in residents getting an increase in services. One example: For the first time in a number of years, this budget increases resources to preserve and maintain the City’s road system, which is a key priority identified by the Lakewood City Council. This budget reflects the City’s commitment to providing quality services and amenities to residents while reestablishing Lakewood’s short- and long-term financial viability. Other highlights include:

  • Increases resources to preserve and maintain the City’s road system.
  • Funding for several new park improvement projects.
  • Replenishes the General Fund reserves to meet its 12% policy objective by the end of 2016.
  • General Fund operating revenues are projected to grow 2.7% in 2015 and another 1.2% in 2016. General Fund operating expenditures are projected to grow 0.4% in 2015 followed by 2.2% in 2016.

For more information: http://goo.gl/t4vvY1

5th Annual Fallen Officers Food Drive

  • WHAT: Lakewood Police Department 5th Annual Fallen Officers Food Drive.
  • WHEN: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 26.
  • WHERE: Lakewood Police Department, 9401 Lakewood Dr. SW.
  • WHO: The Emergency Food Network, as in Police has partnered with the organization that provides food to some 60 food banks

There are several reasons to donate to the Fallen Officers Food Drive, including:

  • E.F.N.: It supports the Emergency Food Network. Enough said. Your donations will do good across Pierce County.
  • Super Simple: If you can’t make it Nov. 26, just drop off donations at the Lakewood Police Department a few days prior. You can even donate online at fallenofficerfooddrive.org  to make a Paypal donation or Text HUNGER to 85944 to donate $10.
  • Bang For The Buck: The potential difference is massive. Donate one $1, and the Emergency Food Network can distribute over $12 worth of food. Help feed struggling families or buy that snack out of the vending machine? Simple choice, really.
  • Aiming High: The Fallen Officers Food Drive is thinking big this year. The goal is $50,000 and 50,000 pounds of food. That’s half of what has been donated in the previous four years. Combined. We need your generosity. Can you help us get there?

Burn Ban Issued for Piece County

Due to stagnant weather conditions and rising air pollution, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency  issued a Stage 2 burn ban for all of Pierce County on Nov. 17. The ban was lifted on Nov. 20. The purpose of a burn ban is to reduce the pollution that is creating unhealthy air, usually due to excessive wood smoke. The Clean Air Agency will continue to closely monitor the situation. For more information: http://goo.gl/RND0Pn

Quarter Recognition Awards and Breakfast

The City of Lakewood celebrated the folks who help our municipal government run on Nov. 20 at the City's 4th Quarter Recognition Awards and Breakfast. Several employees who this year are marking 10 years with the City were recognized. The City's Executive Leadership Team cooked breakfast. Mayor Don Anderson and City Councilmember Marie Barth attended.

WALPELRA Workshop

On November 19, 2014 HR Director Debra Young was a panel member at a workshop for WAPELRA (Washington Public Employer Labor Relations Association). Panel members represented three different counties, Port of Seattle and Lakewood. The training focused on basic labor relations intended for practitioners that have limited experience with grievances or grievance arbitration.

3rd Annual SSMCP Members Forum

The South Sound Military & Communities Partnership Member Forum took place Nov. 18 at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. The meeting featured a report from Program Manager Tiffany Speir and several wonderful guest speakers over breakfast. Speakers included Maj. Gen. (Ret.) James M. Collins, Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for the State of Washington; Kristine M. Reeves, Military and Defense Sector Lead, Department of Commerce, State of Washington; and Col. Stephen Yoest, Deputy Commander of Clinical Services, Madigan Army Medical Center, JBLM. Topics included the military's economic impact in the South Sound and Washington State, the possibility of BRAC and much more. Thank you again to everyone who attended. Check out photos of the meeting on the City's Facebook page: http://goo.gl/RNjDzh

Lakewood Business Showcase: Boo Han Market

Mayor Don Anderson recognized the family-owned and -operated Boo Han Market as the Business Showcase for November 2014 during the Nov. 17 City Council meeting. Boo Han immigrated from Korea to Lakewood in 1973 and earned enough money to open the store.

  • Jae Han, Boo Han's son, attributes the store’s successful run, in part, to his family’s spirit of hard work and dedication. He also credited a notion that’s even simpler: The store talked and listed to its customers. It found out what they wanted, what foods they missed from Korea and provided those products at the lowest possible cost.
  • One of the big reasons for the Boo Han Market’s success is its positive relationship with its native city.
  • Aside from the City of Lakewood, several Korean-language media from the Northwest appeared for Monday's presentation, including Sportsseoulusa Koreatowndaily, the Korean Daily NW Branch and KO-AM TV.
  • The best part: Boo Han's grandchildren presented him with flowers.
  • The City of Lakewood would again like to thank Boo Han Market for being such a wonderful business.
  • Check out photos of the Business Showcase here: http://goo.gl/Zrp2I2

Cascade Regional Blood Services Presentation

The Lakewood City Council heard a presentation from Dan Schmitt with Cascade Regional Blood Services during the Nov. 17 Council meeting. The organization thanked the City of Lakewood, particularly its Parks and Recreation Department, for its support. Check out photos of the presentation here: http://goo.gl/DVbrqF

Lakewood Welcomes Okinawa Exchange Students

On Nov. 17, Lakewood City Councilmembers Mike Brandstetter and Mary Moss, as well as City Manager Manager John Caulfield, Assistant City Manager/Finance and Administrative Services Director Tho Kraus and other representatives from the City of Lakewood participated in a celebration of 23 exchange students from Ishigaki, Okinawa, Japan at Lakes High School. The students are visiting Lakewood as part of an exchange program that's facilitated through the Lakewood Sister Cities Association. Over the summer, 23 students from Lakes High stayed with host families in Japan. The exchange students joined host families, representatives from Clover Park School District, the City and others over some great barbecue. The students did a presentation on their homeland, as well as performed a cultural dance. The community of Lakewood is honored at the opportunity of hosting these energetic, ambitious and curious students. Although they leave back to Japan on Wednesday, it's a great chance to showcase who we are.

Parks, Recreation and Community Services

Jingle Bell Rock 5K

  • WHAT: City of Lakewood’s 3rd Annual Jingle Bell Rock 5K run, in partnership with St. Clare Hospital.
  • WHEN: 9 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 6. Stay for a festive after-party with music and snacks. T-shirts and timing chips can be picked up 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., on Dec. 5, or the day of the race.
  • WHERE: The course begins and ends at the roundabout in front of Lakewood City Hall, 6000 Main Street SW.
  • COST: $25 per person. Runners can sign up online athttps://apm.activecommunities.com/lakewoodparksandrec/Home  or call (253) 983-7887. (Sign up Nov. 21-23 and save $5 off registration!)
  • WHAT ELSE: Ugly. Christmas. Sweaters. Wear 'em.

For more information: http://goo.gl/H07o5s

Activities at the Lakewood Senior Activity Center

There is lots going on at the Lakewood Senior Activity Center. Call the mainline at (253) 798-4090 to RSVP for events. Registration for the Winter 2015 courses opens Jan. 2. However, an oil painting class and a number of short exercise courses open in December, and you can sign up at any time. In the meantime, check out what the center ran this week:

Monday

  • Movie Monday

Tuesday

  • Men’s Coffee
  • Mah Jongg
  • Drop-in Line Dancing

Wednesday

  • Workshop Wednesday—Coaster Set

Thursday

  • Memory Social Hour: Gratitude Gathering

Friday

  • Open Computer Lab

For more information: http://goo.gl/qBXC0M

Police

Lakewood City Council Recognizes LPD

Mayor Don Anderson read a proclamation that recognized the work of our outstanding Police Department during the Nov. 17 City Council meeting.

  • Specifically, the City Council recognized LPD for being named "Agency of the Year" in the RISE Awards competition presented by TASER International and PoliceOne.
  • The work of LPD can be seen both tangibly and intangibly. Thanks for keeping the community safe.

Check out photos of the proclamation here: http://goo.gl/8lFRvv

Council Meetings

The City Council will be holding a study session on Monday, November 24, 2014, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW. Agenda items for the meeting include:

  • Review of the Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan
  • Review of an interlocal agreement with the City of DuPont for human resources services

The City Council will be holding a Joint meeting with the Clover Park School District Board on Tuesday, November 25, 2014, beginning at 6:00 p.m., at the Clover Park School District Student Services Center, Board Room, located at 10903 Gravelly Lake Drive SW. Agenda items for the meeting include:

  • Council goals and priorities
  • 2015-2017 State Legislative Agenda
  • Legislative Policy Manual
  • Federal legislative priorities

The City Council will be holding a regular meeting on Monday, December 1, 2014, 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
  • Clover Park School District Report
  • Adopt 2014 Comprehensive Plan amendments
  • Approve 2015 human services funding allocations
  • Approve interlocal agreements with University Place, Town of Steilacoom and DuPont for court services
  • Approve interlocal agreement with City of DuPont for human resources services
  • Approve an agreement with the Johnston Group for federal lobbying services
  • Approve an agreement with Gordon Thomas Honeywell for state lobbying services

City Council Adopts 2015-16 Biennial Budget

On Monday, Nov. 17, the Lakewood City Council unanimously adopted its 2015-2016 Biennial Budget.

It is a balanced budget that results in residents getting an increase in services. One example: For the first time in a number of years, this budget increases resources to preserve and maintain the City’s road system, which is a key priority identified by the Lakewood City Council. This budget reflects the City’s commitment to providing quality services and amenities to residents while reestablishing Lakewood’s short- and long-term financial viability.

The budget also includes funding for several new park improvement projects, including upgrades to the Waughop Lake Trail, expansion of Springbrook Park, replacement of playground equipment and new docks at Harry Todd Park, and trail improvements at the Chambers Creek Properties in partnership with the City of University Place and Pierce County.

An essential component of this budget is the City’s allocation of financial resources to establish a proper level of reserves. The 2015-16 budget gradually returns the City to sound financial footing by replenishing General Fund reserves to meet its 12% policy objective by the end of 2016. The reserves are intended to accommodate unexpected operational changes, legislative impacts and other economic events that affect the City's operations.

This balanced and strategic approach has resulted in a spending plan that adapts to the changing needs of our community without compromising our financial future.

In terms of numbers, General Fund operating revenues are projected to grow 2.7% in 2015 and another 1.2% in 2016, which is slightly better than historical trend between 2009 and 2014, when the average growth was closer to 1.5% per year. General Fund operating expenditures are projected to grow 0.4% in 2015 followed by 2.2% in 2016, reflecting the necessary changes to stop using one-time monies and reserves to balance the budget. Simply put, that practice is not sustainable.

The end result of this budget is that the General Fund will be balanced and operating expenditures will not exceed operating revenues, resulting in a positive operating margin in both 2015 and 2016.

The City is dedicated to meeting service demands and providing them to our citizens, both in the near- and long-term. This requires reevaluating the paradigms that have been governing the City for a number of years.

We will be looking to economic development, focusing primarily in our commercial areas, to generate additional property and sales taxes. Locally, we see nothing but opportunity in our key commercial areas such as the Towne Center, Springbrook, Tillicum, and the Pacific Highway South corridor, which is directly adjacent to I-5 with multiple prime properties ready for redevelopment and revitalization. Areas such as the International District and Woodbrook Industrial Business Park area stand ready and available for new investment to create jobs and opportunity for Lakewood and our region.

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