- July 21, 2011
- Members of the City Council
City of Tacoma, Washington
Dear Council Members:
TOPICS OF INTEREST
1. The Pacific Avenue Streetscape was discussed at the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee meeting on July 13th. Chair Fey asked that the full Council receive a summary of comments from the EPW committee members at the August 2nd Committee of the Whole meeting. Attached are several documents for your review before the meeting. The first attachment is the summarized comments from the EPW committee, the second attachment is design suggestions offered by Council Member Boe. Attachment three contains draft additions Public Works has suggested to the Pacific Avenue Streetscape in response to the EPW Committee comments.
2. The agenda for the Public Utility Board meeting of July 27, 2011, is attached for your information.
STUDY SESSION/WORK SESSION
3. The City Council Study Session of Tuesday, July 26, 2011, will be held in Room 16 of the Tacoma Municipal Building North. Discussion items will be: (1) Billboard Sign Code Amendments; (2) Pt. Ruston Development Project; (3) Other Items of Interest; (4) Agenda Review; and (5) Executive Session – Pending and Potential Litigation.
On July 19th, the Council conducted a public hearing regarding the Planning Commission’s recommended sign code amendments to prohibit digital billboards. At Tuesday’s Study Session, the Council will discuss the public comments from the hearing and any written testimony they have received.
As a second item at the Study Session, staff will provide Council an update on the Pt. Ruston development project and the proposed third amendment to the Agreement for Improvements, Resolution No. 38300, on Tuesday’s Council agenda for your consideration.
At the conclusion of Tuesday’s Study Session, there will be an Executive Session to discuss Pending and Potential Litigation.
4. The updated Tentative Council Study Session, Workshop and Town Hall Meeting Calendar is attached for your information.
5. Tax and License Division Manager Danielle Larson provides the attached memorandum with responses to questions raised during the first reading of Ordinance No. 28006, related to door-to-door soliciting. This ordinance will be on Tuesday’s Council agenda for your consideration.
6. Following are responses to questions asked at the July 12th Study Session during the Downtown Parking Pay Station System Report discussion:
- Council Member Fey asked if Tacoma is more generous than other cities with the enforcement of disabled parking violations. Public Works reports that enforcement is consistent with other cities. Public Works will continue providing disability parking patrols citywide and is developing an emphasis patrol routine specific for disability parking in the downtown area.
- Mayor Strickland inquired about the types of violations enforced besides parking and if citations are issued for expired tabs. In the past six months, citations were issued for 37 different types of parking code violations. The top four violations contributing to about 80 percent of parking citations issued include: expired pay station time, failure to purchase time, parking longer than the maximum time allowed, and ADA infractions. Expired tab violations are enforced and contribute to four percent of all citations.
- Council Member Fey asked if Tacoma purchased the parking pay stations. The City purchased the parking pay stations with 2009 LTGO bond funds. This was not included in the expenditure information provided in the presentation, but will be included in the future.
- Mayor Strickland inquired about providing re-loadable parking gift cards. The Parking Advisory Task Force examined re-loadable parking cards and determined it was not feasible at this time. The cards are expensive and difficult to distribute. Current costs range from $2 to $4 per card with additional startup costs for retail sales outlet/distribution and pay station upgrades. The Parking Advisory Task Force will re-evaluate the gift card suggestion if there is sufficient demand for the product and will look for ways to partner with others to reduce costs and improve efficiency.
7. At the last Study Session, Council Member Fey asked about lessons staff learned from the Cheney Renovation Project related to the increased costs for additional work done by Mortensen, which resulted in the need to increase their contract. Public Works reports that the most important lesson learned from this experience is that clear communication is required when staff is reporting the progress of projects to the City Council, in particular, clearly identifying additional improvements and their costs as they occur during the course of a project. In addition, staff will conduct a review of other recent major projects and determine other opportunities for improving clarity and transparency in reporting.
8. Regarding questions from the Council at the last Committee of the Whole meeting related to the public’s involvement in the previous City Manager’s recruitment process, in addition to being interviewed by Council, the top three candidates met with panels of City department directors, agency directors, labor representatives, regional representatives, and the media for question and answer sessions. There was also a televised public forum that was moderated. The questions used in the public forum were generated using citizen input from the on-line news room survey and requests for input from Neighborhood Councils, Cross Business District Association, Urban League, El Centro Latino, Tacoma Housing Authority, Human Services Coalition, Pierce Transit, and the Ministerial Alliance, to name a few.
Community Relations Manager Rob McNair-Huff reports that 66 people responded to this on-line survey in 2005 to offer their thoughts on the hiring process. Regarding the ability to track information about those who would respond to an on-line survey in 2011, we can include a request for each survey respondent to submit their mailing zip code in an effort to ascertain the distribution of survey respondents in the current City Manager Search Process Survey.
9. For your information, the City submitted the following grant application:
- Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program FY 2011 Local Solicitation – The Justice Assistance Grant is a formula of funding to jurisdictions based on violent crimes. Tacoma’s funding, in the amount of $199,653 will support joint Human Rights & Human Services (HR&HS) and the Tacoma Police Department crime prevention activities. HR&HS will use $41,825 for a contract and program auditor. HR&HS will also use $50,000 for competitive contracts to community organizations providing human services that support Police’s violence prevention activities, and $2012 for related travel, supplies and printing costs. The Police will use $105,816 in overtime hours for Special Emphasis Team missions, regarding violence and youth crime issues including: prostitution, juvenile problems, curfew, minors in possession of alcohol, truancy, and domestic violence.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
10. You have been invited to the following events:
- On Monday, August 1st, 4:30-6:30 p.m., you are invited to join Metro Parks guided by Pastor Ron Vignec on a bus tour of the Eastside to see the assets and some of the needs of the community and programs offered in our parks. This is part of an ongoing series of round table discussions around youth involvement in Tacoma’s Eastside. The bus will leave Portland Avenue Community Center located at 3513 E Portland at 4:30 p.m. sharp.
- Ethnic Fest 2011 “Celebrating Culture & Community” on Saturday, July 30th and Sunday, July 31st, Noon to 7:00 p.m., at Wright Park, 501 South I Street.
- Groundbreaking Ceremony for the Hilltop Regional Medical Center on Tuesday, August 9th, 10:00 a.m., at 1202 Martin Luther King Jr. Way.
- Commencement Bay Maritime Festival 2011 Celebrating Tacoma's Working Waterfront on Saturday August 27th and Sunday August 28th, 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m., at Dock Street, Thea Foss Waterway and the Port of Tacoma (schedule of events available at http://maritimefest.org/).
- Barbecue to celebrate 23 years of providing services to people living with HIV/AIDS hosted by the AIDS Housing Association of Tacoma on Saturday, August 13th, 1:00 p.m., at 301 North L Street.
- International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local No. 483’s Annual Picnic on Saturday, August 13th, 12:00 p.m., at Tacoma Sportsmen’s Club, located at 16409 Canyon Road East, Puyallup.
- Mayor’s 2011 Summer Reading Celebration on Saturday, August 20th, 11:00 a.m., at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium, located at 5400 North Pearl.
Interim City Manager