Bellingham City Council
Compiled by Boris Schleinkofer
Action Taken at August 20, 2018 Meeting
Shall the council:
113. Spend $290,000 to purchase 24.17 acres on the east side of Northwest Drive, just north of the Cornwall Church for wetland mitigation? The property will be purchased with Greenway funds and will become Public Works Department property. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
114. Authorize the mayor to sign a $24,709 settlement agreement with Bellingham Crown Plaza for sewer backups? In 2009, the city of Bellingham had communications cabling installed at the corner of Commerical and Magnolia streets. Nine times between February 2010 and November 2017, Best Rooter Service cleared the sewer line servicing Orphalee Smith’s accounting office at 1408 Commercial Street. It was assumed the problems were caused by roots. When a new tenant occupied the former accounting office, they hired Dirt Works Bellingham to find the source of the problem. It was discovered the sewer line had been cut when the cabling had been installed. Dirt Works charged $22,063 to fix the problem and the rest was for unplugging the sewer line. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
115. Authorize the mayor to sign an agreement with Governors Point Land LP for wholesale water? At the 6/29/2009 meeting, vote #140, the council voted to deny a wholesale/retail water application to serve a proposed 141-lot subdivision on Governors Point. On 4/13/2018, Governors Point Land LP (Partnership) applied for wholesale water service for sixteen new residences and two supplemental non-residential connections on the 125-acre Governors Point property located outside the city limits and the Urban Growth Area. At the 6/4/2018 meeting, vote #75, the council reviewed the application and found that the provision of wholesale water to the partnership met the criteria of local law, including that providing water was in the “best interests” of the city. The council voted to direct staff to work with the owner and move forward with the wholeshale water agreement. As a condition of wholesale water service, the partnership will donate approximately 80-acres of land to the Whatcom Land Trust as a public nature preserve, with a two mile loop foot trail providing public access. (AB21967) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
116. Authorize the mayor to award the low bid of $1,328,996 to Ram Construction of Bellingham for the Cordata Parkway/Stuart Road roundabout? The engineer’s estimate was $1,885,000. Cordata Parkway is a north-south secondary arterial through the Cordata neighborhood and Stuart Road provides east-west access to Whatcom Community College; development is proposed on all four corners. At the 3/23/2015 meeting, vote #52, the council authorized the expenditure of $3,620,000 to purchase 20.76 acres on the northeast side near the intersection that became Cordata Community Park. A multimodal roundabout will slow vehicles, reduce collisions and improve safety for all transportation users, while also providing long-term transportation capacity, as the Cordata neighborhood continues to grow. The city received nine bids, the high bid was $2,274607. (AB22027) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
117. Authorize the mayor to sign an agreement with the state of Washington for two Washington Conservation Corps crews? The city will sponsor the crews from 10/1/2018 to 9/8/2019, the total cost to the city is $404,250. The cost to the city in the previous year was $387,334. The estimated value of the two crews are $462,000. Crews will perform riparian restoration work throughout the city of Bellingham and the Lake Whatcom watershed. Specific tasks could include invasive species control, native species installation, plant nursery care, scientific monitoring, and fence installation or repair. A special term is included which states that members, supervisors, tools and trucks will not be utilized to clear active or abandoned homeless encampments or to clean up hazardous materials including hypodermic needles. If a significant amount of hazardous or unidentifiable material is discovered on a project site, activity will cease until potential hazards are mitigated or an alternate project site is found. (AB22029) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
118. Authorize the mayor to reappoint Angela Nelson to her second term and Olin Anderson to his first term on the Lake Whatcom Watershed Advisory Board? The board advises the city on the purchase, management, maintenance and use of properties within the Lake Whatcom watershed. Angela Nelson is a certified professional in stormwater quality and has lived in Whatcom County and Bellingham for the past 24 years. She was initially appointed the the board at the 7/6/2015 meeting, vote #131, her second term will expire on 7/6/2021, at which time she may be reappointed. Olin Anderson is a landscape designer/restoration ecologist who has lived in Washington State since 2014 and Whatcom County since January 2017. His first term will expire on 8/20/2021, at which time he may be reappointed. (AB22031) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
119. Appropriate $11,912,096 for goods and services checks issued from July 14 through August 10, 2018? (AB22033/22034/22035/22036) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
120. Appropriate $6,755,859 for payroll checks issued from July 11 through August 10, 2018? (AB22037/22038) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
121. Commend Todd Ramsay for his service to the city of Bellingham? Todd Goodman Ramsay, age 53, passed away unexpectedly on Sunday, August 5 at St. Joseph Medical Center in Bellingham. Todd was born in Bellingham in 1965. He was a champion of community policing and an advocate for youth and low-income residents of Bellingham. He served the Bellingham Police Department for three decades in many positions, including as chief of police. This resolution honors him for his years of service with the police department as well as to the city of Bellingham and the community and expresses support to his family at this difficult time. AB22023 (Resolution 2018-19) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
122. Authorize the mayor to sign a $4,418,760 loan agreement with the state of Washington for improvements to the Roeder Sewer lift station? The loan will be repaid over 20 years with an effective interest rate of 1.5 percent (interest rate of 0.5 percent and administrative charge of 1 percent), and will obligate sewer funds for the annual repayment. This project includes the design and construction of improvements and adjacent sewer piping located near the industrial area along the waterfront, replacing and upgrading pumps, piping, electrical controls. The project protects water quality in Squalicum Creek and Bellingham Bay, and will result in adequate capacity to avoid overflows of untreated wastewater and resultant accompanying risks to public health and the sensitive environment. The lift station is currently over capacity, as the third (redundant) pump currently comes on during peak storm flows. AB22028 (Resolution 2018-20) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
123. Appropriate $60,000 from the Library Gift Fund? The library board has identified $20,000 for materials and $40,000 for architectural consulting services for interior space planning at the downtown library. AB22017 (Ordinance 2018-08-013) Approved 6-0, Terry Bornemann excused.
Action Taken at August 27, 2018, Meeting
Shall the council:
124. Ratify the collective bargaining agreement with AFSCME Local No. 114? The following general terms will apply: wages will increase by 5 percent on 1/1/2018. The employer’s contribution towards health insurance premiums in 2018 and 2019 will increase by 5 percent above the contribution rate in 2017, and again in 2019 by 5 percent from the contribution rate in 2018. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 7-0
125. Authorize the mayor to sign an agreement with the Bellingham School District for a police officer to be assigned to the school district? Under the terms of the district resource officer program, the Bellingham School district will contribute $55,000 toward the officer’s salary and the city will pay the rest. The district resource officer program is responsible for on-campus law enforcement and protection of lives and property. Additional, the officer will: assist school officials with regulations regarding student conduct; provide security for school functions; respond to major disruptions; investigate and report criminal offenses; cooperate with police investigations; and provide traffic control, the program will be an educational resource concerning the law and law enforcement agencies and will counsel students when requested to do so by the parents or school principal. (AB19775) Approved 7-0
126. Authorize the mayor to sign an $15,500 agreement with Western Washington University for the 2018 residential survey? An invitation will be mailed to 7,000 Bellingham residents to take an online or phone survey. The survey will be performed by the Center for Economic and Business Research. There will be a report on the findings and a presentation to the City Council. The survey is expected to be completed before the end of the year. At the 8/29/2016 meeting, vote #137, the council authorized $14,000 for the 2016 residential survey. Approved 7-0
127. Authorize the mayor to sign an agreement with Whatcom County to allocate a $13,223 federal grant? The 2018 Byrne Justice Assistance Grant Program apportioned $22,557 for the Bellingham police department and $13,223 to the Whatcom County sheriff’s department for inclement weather protection gear. (AB21782) Approved 7-0
128. Authorize the mayor and public works director to accept a $983,792 state grant to address untreated stormwater runoff generated by Meridian Street pavement and adjacent areas? The project will improve water quality in Spring Creek, Baker Creek, Squalicum Creek and Bellingham Bay, it includes design and construction of water quality treatment facilities and will improve water quality in downstream receiving waters, especially Squalicum Creek. The grant requires a local match of $327,931. The total cost of the project is $1,513,299. AB22048 Approved 7-0
129. Authorize the mayor and public works director to accept a $491,637 state grant to address untreated runoff entering Lake Whatcom? This project will improve water quality in the Lake Whatcom through the installation of phosphorus-treatment and infiltration or filtration facilities, along the intersections of Huntington Street and Silver Beach Avenue, Northshore Drive and Hayward Street, and Summit Street and Prospect Way in the city of Bellingham. This project will provide treatment for total suspended solids (TSS), dissolved copper, dissolved zinc, and total phosphorus. The grant requires a local match of $125,678. The total cost of the project is $715,000. AB22049 Approved 7-0
130. Authorize the mayor and public works director to accept a $1,236,464 state grant to rebuild the Park Place sand filter system? This project will improve water quality in Lake Whatcom through the installation of a new sand filter treatment facility at the southwest corner of Park Place and Northshore Drive in the city of Bellingham. The existing Park Place sand filter, constructed in 1994, treats roughly 105 acres of mixed development and forested areas draining to Lake Whatcom, a water body with a Total Maximum Daily Load plan for total phosphorus and bacteria. The contributing areas consist of 39 acres of forest and 66 acres of roadways and private parcels, including 26 acres of impervious surfaces. The grant requires a local match of $412,155. The total cost of the project is $2,552,167. AB22050 Approved 7-0
Action Taken at September 10, 2018 Meeting
Shall the council:
132. Accede to a request for sewer service at 987 Marine Drive? The property has a single-family residence which was built in 1952. It is served with water from Water District #2 and is within the city of Bellingham’s Urban Growth Area. In July, the property owner discovered that the septic system constructed for the residence had failed. There is an existing sewer main located in Marine Drive abutting the property. At the 5/23/2011 meeting, vote #94, the council repealed all water and sewer service zones located outside the city limits. The Growth Management Act prohibits the expansion of city services into rural areas unless it is necessary to protect public health and safety. A site investigation by the Whatcom County Health Department revealed a failing septic system. (AB22053) Approved 7-0
135. Appropriate $3,329,054 for payroll checks issued from August 11 through August 24, 2018? (AB22061) Approved 7-0
136. Appropriate $10,414,607 for goods and services checks issued from August 11 through August 31, 2018? (AB22062/22063/22064) Approved 7-0
137. Authorize the mayor to award the low bid of $60,601 to Williamson Construction of Deming for phase 3 of the Willow Spring salmon enhancement project? The engineer’s estimate was $53,263. This is the final phase of the project. The $254,758 contract for the first phase was approved at the 3/15/2010 meeting, vote #52. The project is located on the west side of Squalicum Way near the West Street intersection in Squalicum Creek Park. The project is an off-channel salmon habitat with 1,030 feet of new stream channel, .34 acres of new wetlands and 1.54 acres of forest. Phase 3 involves the removal of an existing culvert, grading/stabilization of stream banks and related work to create an open stream connection to Squalicum Creek. The city received three bids, the high bid was $80,365. (AB22065) Approved 7-0
138. Authorize the mayor to award the low bid of $203,486 to Strengholt Construction of Lynden for alterations to the planning department offices in City Hall? The engineer’s estimate was $204,356. The work includes demolition, materials, abatement, relocation and addition of walls, doors and windows, new cabinetry, carpet and paint, minor electrical work and data cabling, limited re-configuration of lay-in ceiling and relocation of air grilles and diffusers. The city received five bids, the high bid was $268,809. (AB22066) Approved 7-0
131. Relinquish a portion of surplus utility easement located in the alley between Ferry Avenue and Adams Avenue? (Public hearing held) The city vacated 16 feet of alley in 1953 but retained a utility easement. The right-of-way relinquished bisects the property addressed as 516 32nd Street containing 1,200 square feet, more or less. Because land use permits have already been issued to Wildjay Holdings for the development of two multifamily residential buildings, relinquishment will enable the next step of building permit issuance. The Public Works Department has determined that the easement is surplus to the city’s needs and not required for the provision of public utility services. AB22051 (Resolution 2018-21) Approved 7-0
133. Confirm the mayor’s appointment of Andrew Asbjornsen as interim finance director and the city’s authorized representative to the Local Government Investment Pool? At the 3/24/2014 meeting, vote # 50, the council approved the mayor’s appointment of Brian Henshaw as the finance director. He has announced his resignation and the state treasurer requires a new resolution changing the city’s authorized representative for purposes of making investment decisions within the Washington State Treasurer’s Local Government Investment Pool. AB22055 (Resolution 2018-22) Approved 7-0
134. Initiate the process to fill a vacancy on the council? On 8/31/2018, Roxanne Murphy announced on Facebook that she had accepted a job offer in Valdez, Alaska, and announced her resignation from the at-large position at the 9/10/2018 council meeting. The Charter states that the council will appoint a replacement, that person will occupy the position until the next general election is certified. This vote establishes an application period, a meeting during which each candidate will be allotted time to present his or her qualifications, a council executive session for the purpose of evaluating the qualifications of candidates, followed by nominations and voting. The application period closes on 9/25/2018. The applicants will make presentations at a special meeting on 10/1/2018. AB22057 (Resolution 2018-23) Approved 7-0
139. Establish regulations for the deployment of small cell facilities in city rights-of-way? (Public Hearing held on July 23) 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. This is part of a larger trend seen across the state and country. This vote establishes a small cell permit process that will be administered by the Public Works Department, consistent with management of other services operating in the right-of-way, and amends prior city code to exempt small cell facilities from its scope. The ordinance protects public health and safety by requiring facilities to: meet ADA clearance requirements; undergo seismic, ice and wind load analysis; and meet FCC requirements for RF emissions. Visual clutter is minimized by: imposing size and height limitations; requiring operators to attach to existing (or replacement) poles whenever feasible; imposing pole separation requirements (i.e., minimum distance between poles); and requiring providers to use screening and concealment techniques to minimize visual impact. AB22006 (Ordinance 2018-09-014) Approved 7-0
140. Amend the right-of-way franchise regulations? The franchise regulations contain the terms and conditions upon which service providers may install facilities within city rights-of-way to provide services such as power, gas and telecommunications to the general public. The franchise regulations will be consolidated into a single chapter for greater clarity and consistency, impose timelines for processing applications, and integrate the city’s new small cell regulations. The council has further determined that it is in the best interest of the city to clarify that cable television franchise holders must continue to obtain a construction permit for all work in the right-of-way. Staff will bring forward a resolution setting the franchise application review fee in conjunction with the final reading of the ordinance. AB22040 (Ordinance 2018-09-015) Approved 7-0
141. Adopt uniform general business license requirements mandated by the State of Washington? In 2017, the Washington State Legislature required cities who have a general business license requirement to work together through the Association of Washington Cities to adopt a model ordinance, which contains: a uniform definition of “engaging in business within the city” for purposes of delineating the circumstances under which a general business license is required; and the uniform minimum licensing threshold of $2,000 or less under which a person would be relieved of the requirement to obtain the city’s general business license. The final model ordinance has been released and the city must adopt it by 10/17/2018. The council updated online applications for business license at the 10/8/2012 meeting, vote #196. AB22041 (Ordinance 2018-09-016) Approved 7-0
142. Vacate a southerly portion of Bennett Road between Stuart and June roads and a westerly portion of June Road between Bennett Road and Northwest Avenue? (Closed record hearing held at the 8/7/2017 council meeting.) Mersey LLC intends to conduct wetland mitigation and riparian enhancements in the subject right-of-ways in order to develop the Aurora Court preliminary plat, north of Costco and within proximity of Bear Creek. The square footage of the new right-of-ways to be dedicated under the preliminary plat exceeds the square footage of the right-of-ways to be vacated. The Bellingham Hearing Examiner held a public hearing on 6/14/2017. AB21688 (Ordinance 2018-09-017) Approved 7-0