Bellingham City Council
Compiled by Boris Schleinkofer
Roxanne Murphy resigned at the September 10 meeting. The at-large position will be vacant until the October 8 meeting.
Action Taken at September 24, 2018 Meeting
Shall the council:
143. Spend $990,000 to purchase 160 acres of open space from Western Pacific Timber for wetland mitigation near the corner of E. Smith and Everson Goshen roads? The property will be purchased with Greenway funds and will be become Public Works property. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 6-0
144. Grant a noise variance to the Washington State Department of Transportation for Sunset Drive/Mt. Baker Highway (SR-542) paving? Construction work in residentially zoned areas between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m. requires a noise variance. The variance is for 55 non-consecutive nights between 3/18/2019 and 11/15/2019. The project encompasses two sections through Bellingham: I-5 to Woburn/Hannegan and McLeod Road to the city limits. The project includes grinding and paving, ADA ramp upgrades and a culvert replacement. A noise variance was approved at the 2/12/2018 meeting, vote #20, but the project was delayed one year. (AB21867) Approved 6-0
145. Authorize the mayor to sign a $927,219 agreement with Western Washington University for the Lake Whatcom monitoring project? The project was initiated in the 1980s to measure and track long-term lake data for temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, conductivity, turbidity, and nutrients, including nitrogen and phosphorus. The work is performed by Western’s Institute for Watershed Studies and funded by the city. The partnership between WWU and the city is a key component of the Lake Whatcom Management Program. The agreement runs from 1/1/2019 through 12/31/2021. Since 2005, April Markiewicz has written yearly articles for Whatcom Watch on the results of the of the monitoring. (AB22071) Approved 6-0
146. Appropriate $3,420,074 for payroll checks issued from August 25 through September 10, 2018? (AB22074) Approved 6-0
147. Appropriate $1,539,061 for goods and services checks issued from September 1 through September 7, 2018? (AB22075) Approved 6-0
148. Authorize the mayor to sign a joint funding agreement with the federal government for the operation and maintenanace of stream gages? The city partners with U.S. Department of Interior/U.S. Geological Survey for the operation and maintenance of seven stream gauges. The total cost of the program is $163,090: the city’s share is $124,282 and the federal government’s share is $38,808. The program monitors the stream flow discharges of Olsen Creek, Carpenter Creek, Euclid Creek, Silver Beach Creek, Brannian Creek, Anderson Creek and the Middle Fork of the Nooksack River and the turbidity of the last two. The agreement runs from 10/1/2018 through 9/30/2019. (AB22076) Approved 6-0
149 Establish application fees for the deployment of small-cell facilities in city rights-of-way? Small cells are replacing traditional cell towers and typically handle fewer calls and may be attached to existing power poles, telephone poles and street lights. The city has been approached by providers seeking to install small-cell facilities in city rights-of-way. Regulations for small-cell facilities were passed at the 9/10/2018 meeting, vote #139. The small-cell application fee will be $500, with subsequent applications in a batch submission charged $375. Applications to modify existing small-cell permits will $250. AB22006 (Resolution 2018-24) Approved 6-0
150. Establish franchise application fees for utility and telecommunications providers? City Code authorizes the city to grant non-exclusive franchises for the installation and operation of facilities in the right-of-way for the provision of utility and telecommunications services to the public; the fee will be set at $1,500 per application, which applies to applications for new franchisees and to amend, transfer or renew existing franchises. AB22040 (Resolution 2018-25) Approved 6-0
Action Taken at October 1, 2018 Special Meeting
Shall the council:
151. Appoint Hannah Stone to the at-large position on the City Council? Roxanne Murphy resigned from the at-large postion at the September 10 meeting to take a job in Valdez, Alaska. Twenty-four registered voters and residents of Bellingham applied for the vacancy. The applicants were given three minutes to present their qualifications. The council adjourned to executive session to evaulate the qualifications and for the city attorney to provide legal advice. The council returned 18 minutes later to report their top five choices. Roll call was taken and top five were reported by the clerk. The council adjourned for a second executive session and returned 33 minutes later. One nomination by each council member was recorded on a piece of paper by the clerk and placed in a bowl. A council member held the bowl and the clerk removed a piece of paper from the bowl, it contained the name of Hannah Stone. (AB22077) Approved 6-0
Action Taken at October 8, 2018 Meeting
Hannah Stone was sworn in as the new at-large member by Judge Debra Lev.
Shall the council:
152. Authorize the mayor to award the low bid of $365,341 to Cadence Construction of Seattle to reroof the police department administration and training buildings? The engineer’s estimate was $355,000. The project at 505 Grand Avenue consists of demolition and replacement of existing membrane roofing and flashings, repair and re-finish of roof copings, scuppers and downspouts, painting of standing seam metal roof, as well as furnishing of miscellaneous items on the roof. The base bid was $297,729.30, plus three alternates of $67,611.40, for a total of $365,341. The city received five bids, the high bid was $599,098. (AB22052) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
153. Approve the mayor’s reappointment of Alice Shilhanek to the Lake Whatcom Watershed Advisory Board? The board advises the city on the purchase, management, maintenance and use of property within the watershed. Ms. Shilhanek is a retired geologist who has been a Whatcom County resident since 1984. She was initally appointed at the 10/22/2012 meeting, vote #200, and reappointed at the 9/14/2015 meeting, vote #175. Her third term will expire on 10/22/2021. (AB22084) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
154. Appropriate $8,126,807 for goods and services checks issued from September 8, 2018 through September 28, 2018? (AB22085/22086/22087) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
155. Appropriate $4,356,664 for payroll checks issued from September 11 through September 25, 2018? (AB22088) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
156. Convert B Street between Girard Street and Halleck Street from one-way to two-way vehicular traffic? (Public hearing held.) B Street between Girard and Halleck streets is currently one-way northbound. The signal at the intersection of B Street and Girard was put into flash mode in January 2017 to study removal of a signal as required by the state Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices. The traffic signal will be removed and approximately $40,000 will be spent to reconstruct the intersection as a signed four-way stop to include new curb ramps, curb bulbouts, and removal of the right turn lane onto Grand Avenue will provide a safer intersection and maximize on-street parking. AB22078 (Resolution 2018-26) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
157. Authorize the mayor to sign a development agreement, a lease agreement and an assignment and assumption agreement with Urban Strategies to purchase and redevelop 1314 Cornwall Avenue? (Public hearing held at 9/24 meeting.) The council at the 10/22/2018 meeting, vote #172, authorized the city to purchase the property at 1314 Cornwall Avenue (the former J.C. Penny building) and lease it to Urban Strategies as part of a public/private partnership. The building will consist of up to 90 market-rate housing units with commercial uses on the first floor and parking in the basement. The purchase cost will be recovered through lease payments and/or the future sale of the property. AB22073 (Resolution 2018-27) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
158. Vacate the easterly three feet of 27th Street North of Mill Avenue? (Closed Record Hearing held during 9-24 committee meeting.) The petitioner, David Ebenal, was attempting to sell the property, but several buildings were encroaching, a trait common to buildings on the south side of town. The new property line would be in the back of an old sidewalk, between a series of stormwater treatment facilities. The private utility easement has already been executed, and an appraisal conducted for fair market value. AB22070 (Ordinance 2018-10-017) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
Action Taken at October 22, 2018 Meeting
Shall the council:
159. Authorize the city attorney’s office to hire outside counsel to represent city employees involved in an incident at a Bellingham fire station? When the body of Bradley Ginn, Sr. was waiting at a fire station to be transported to a funeral home, 11 Bellingham Fire Department employees admitted to attempting to intubate the man in contradiction of a “do not resuscitate” order. After the findings of an investigation by the Summit Law Group were released, one Bellingham Fire Department empoyee retired and another resigned. Three family members have filed claims for damages with the city: one claim is for the sum of $200,000, the second for $350,000 and the third for $15 million. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
160. Authorize the mayor to award the low bid of $1,714,272 to Strider Construction of Bellingham to retrofit the Public Works’ operations yard? The engineer’s estimate was $1,681,262. The project involves the installation of stormwater detention and treatment facilities at the public works operations facility, and provides for enhanced treatment of stormwater from Orleans Street and Carolina Street to Barkley Blvd. Although not required by code, the project will help protect water quality in Whatcom Creek and Bellingham Bay. The city received 10 bids, the high bid was $2,295,168. (AB22095) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
161. Appropriate $3,232,516 for goods and services checks issued from September 29, 2018 through October 12, 2018? (AB22104/22105) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
162. Appropriate $3,497,685 for payroll checks issued from September 26, 2018 through October 10, 2018? (AB22106) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
163.Authorize the mayor to sign an agreement extending inmate housing (amendment #3) with SCORE? The South Correctional Entity Regional Jail in Des Moines is a 164,00 square foot facility that cost $52 million to build, has a staff of 150 full-time positions, and the capacity to house 813 inmates. The contract for inmate housing with SCORE provides another tool to address overcrowding at the main jail. This extends the inmate housing agreement with SCORE for one year (1/1/2019 – 12/31/19) with the bed rate increased from $175 to $180. Council authorized the mayor to sign agreements for inmate housing with SCORE at the 3/21/2016 meeting, vote #45, 11/7/2016 meeting, vote #183, and 9/25/2017 meeting, vote #161. (AB22107) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
164. Authorize the mayor to sign an agreement with the Whatcom Transit Authority to install a bus shelter at 2537 Lake Louise Road? Bellingham and Whatcom County jointly own property in the Lake Whatcom watershed referred to as the Lookout Mountain Preserve. The property abuts Lake Louise Road in the vicinity of Sudden Valley. Whatcom Transit Authority is requesting the city and county enter into a property use agreement that would allow for the bus shelter to be placed partially on the jointly-owned Lookout Mountain Preserve. Most of the shelter will be located in the right-of-way of Lake Louise Road; the portion of the shelter placed on the Lookout Mountain Preserve would be less than 100 square feet. (AB22108) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
165. Support Proposition 2018-5, the Low-Income Housing Levy on the general election ballot? (Public hearing held.) At the 6/4/2018 meeting, vote #81, the council voted to place the Low-Income Housing Levy on the November 6 ballot. The measure would replace the low-income housing measure passed at the 2012 general election and enhance other existing housing levies by authorizing property taxes for 10-years to fund programs for low-income housing and related services. The proposed levies authorize $.36 per $1,000 assessed value for a 10 year period, raising up to $4 million annually and $40 million total. AB22091 (Resolution 2018-28) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
166. Support state Initiative-1631 to impose fees on large emitters of greenhouse gases and urge the voters to approve it at the November general election? (Public hearing held.) The City Council voted to join the Cities for Climate Protection program at the 3/14/2005 meeting, vote #53. At the 5/7/2007 meeting, vote #103, the council approved the inventory and action plan of the Cities for Climate Protection program. At the 2/26/2018 meeting, vote #35, the council voted to support placing a price on carbon at state and federal levels; at the 3/26/2018 meeting, vote #43, the council adopted the second Climate Protection Action Plan; at the 5/7/2018 meeting, vote #65, the council created the Climate Action Plan Task Force. Council member Vargas recused herself from the discussion because she is employed by Puget Sound Energy, while Council Member Bornemann stated that he feels there is no federal leadership regarding climate change so legislation for these matters falls on the states. AB22092 (Resolution 2018-29) Approved 5-0-1, Pinky Vargas recused, Dan Hammill excused.
167. Set the time and dates for the 2019 regular council meetings? Twenty-four meetings are scheduled for 2019, the same as 2018. Meeting time will be 7:00 p.m. Roberts Rules of Order are to be used unless otherwise provided by the charter. Full details can be found online at https://www.cob.org/gov/Pages/meeting-materials.aspx. AB22102 (Resolution 2018-30) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
168. Set November 28 at 6:00 p.m. in council chambers for a public hearing before the Bellingham Hearing Examiner for consideration of a street vacation petition? The petitioner, Rob Zuanich, submitted a street vacation petition for a portion of the South State Street right-of-way abutting 614 and 622 11th Street, which is generally located between Bayview Drive and Easton Avenue, in order to facilitate future redevelopment opportunities and street improvements abutting his property. AB22109 (Resolution 2018-31) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
169. Set November 28 at 6:00 p.m. in council chambers for a public hearing before the Bellingham Hearing Examiner for consideration of a street vacation petition? On 3/22/2018, the petitioner submitted a street vacation petition for a portion of Bayview Drive west of South State Street at the entrance to Boulevard Park. The petitioner has submitted the vacation petition in order to facilitate future redevelopment opportunities and street improvements abutting his property. AB22110 (Resolution 2018-32) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
170. Establish regulations for temporary homeless shelters? (Public hearing held at 9/24/2017 meeting.) Emergency regulations were approved at the 1/22/2018 meeting, vote #17, 2/22/2018 meeting and the 4/23/2018 meeting, vote #60. These permanent regulations address temporary building encampments, temporary tent encampments, temporary tiny house encampments and temporary safe parking areas. It addresses the number of people allowed at each site based on the characteristics of the population served and necessary services to be provided and allows installing fences adequate to limit access to the site for the safety and security of residents. AB22067 (Ordinance 2018-10-019) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
171. Increase the fire department’s budget by $169,050? The Bellingham Fire Department was recently awarded a $566,919 federal grant to train five new paramedics to staff the city’s Medic One Advanced Life Support units. The grant requires a 10 percent match [$56,691] by the city for a total of $623,610. The term of this grant will be 2018 and 2019. As a result, only $169,050 is requested for appropriation in the 2017-2018 budget, with the remainder included in the mayor’s preliminary 2019-2020 budget. AB22079 (Ordinance 2018-10-020) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.
172. Appropriate $2,142,936 to purchase property at 1314 Cornwall Avenue? The city will purchase the Cornwall Avenue property (the former J.C. Penney building) and lease it to Urban Strategies, which will purchase the existing building and repurpose it as a mixed-use retail and residential project. The building will consist of up to 90 housing units with commercial uses on the first floor and parking in the basement. The first 15 years the lease’s 50-year term (with three 10-year extensions available) will be $60,000 per year, reset to 6 percent of the fair-market value in the 16th and 36th years. Lease payments will increase 12.5 percent beginning in year 21 and will increase by 12.5 percent every five years thereafter. AB22080 (Ordinance 2018-10-021) Approved 6-0, Dan Hammill excused.