Notes from Shoreline City Council Meeting March 26, 2012

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Shoreline City Council Meeting March 26, 2012
By Devon Vose Rickabaugh

Tobacco banned in parks
The council voted to adapt the Tobacco Free Park Ordinance banning all forms of tobacco within city parks. Parks Director Dick Deal brought an alternate ordinance at the council’s request to limit nonsmoking to “playgrounds, ball field, skate park, beach, restrooms, picnic shelter or bleacher seating area”. He said this ordinance would require expensive signage in each area of all the parks and would be harder to enforce. Mainly he emphasized second hand smoke is detrimental to health and cigarette butt toxins leach into the environment, so as part of a city modeling healthy behavior he recommended the total ban on tobacco products in city parks.

Accessory Dwelling Units amendment passes
Much discussion centered around amending the development code regarding Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU). Council member Egger said that many members of the public had expressed concern about their neighborhoods being changed adversely with these units added to existing houses making it possible for many people to live in one house. Associate planner Steven Szafran said that amending the ordinance to clarify the definition of an interior ADU would have no effect on how many people can live in the house as long as the owner lives there too. In the end all council members voted for the amendment except council member Hall who voted against saying that he thought it would make it easier to build ADU’s.

Overall the council members agreed that the time to redefine the ordinance would be with the comprehensive plan update when as council member Roberts said the council can define “what we want a single family neighborhood to be.” Council Member Winstead pointed out that she didn’t want to be too restrictive since some people need to build and rent ADU’s to help pay the bills.

Storm Creek basin plan
As part of the Surface Water Master Plan the city is conducting a basin plan in the Storm Creek basin to assess the basin conditions including drainage, erosion, infrastructure condition, water quality and aquatic habitat. The action plan for addressing the problems found is scheduled to be completed by April 2012. Erosion has been a problem in Storm Creek especially at the mouth of the creek emptying into Puget Sound. The city and Ronald Wastewater are concerned with the erosion because of the road and wastewater line in the lower reach of Storm Creek.

Local resident Dennis Aker who lives on 17th Place NW said he has been “complaining for twenty years and nothing gets done. Why is the city dumping water on private property?” Doris Aker said they are not allowed to take trees out of the creek which contribute to erosion. City Attorney Ian Sievers said he disagreed with blaming the city for the water coming through the Storm Creek. He said the city is not responsible for the water and that capitol projects to ease the erosion would come from city assessments of the damage there and other places. Doris Aker asked Jesus Sanchez Public Works Director, “What would the city allow us to do? The least we can get is information.”


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