Notes from Shoreline council meeting June 1, 2020

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Pam Cross, reporter
Shoreline City Council Meeting
June 1, 2020

Notes by Pam Cross

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In an effort to curtail the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the City Council meeting will take place online using the Zoom platform and the public will not be allowed to attend in-person. You may watch a live feed of the meeting online; join the meeting via Zoom Webinar; or listen to the meeting over the telephone.
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Mayor Hall called the meeting to order at 7:00pm
All Councilmembers were present via the online Zoom platform.

Proclamation

The Mayor proclaimed June 2020 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ+) Pride Month, to recognize the impact that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals have had on history locally, nationally, and internationally. As in the past, the Pride Flag will be flown all month at City Hall.

Report of the City Manager, Debbie Tarry

Ms. Tarry started her report with comments on behalf of the City in response to the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis.

The actions that led to the death of George Floyd are the opposite of our City’s values and practices. We all have a responsibility to stand against individual and institutional racism that continues to exist in our country since before its founding.

Shoreline Policy Chief Ledford also spoke:

The actions and inaction of the Minneapolis, MN police officers that caused the death of Mr. George Floyd do not reflect the values, training and de-escalation efforts used by the Shoreline Police Department.

Read complete message here

This week in Shoreline

The Shoreline Farmers Market opens this Saturday June 6th. The new location is 155th and Westminster (at former US Bank location, closer to Central Market). To meet health and safety guidelines, there will be the following changes:
  • Limited number of shoppers permitted at one time
  • Face coverings are required
  • No pets allowed (service animals only)
  • Pre-orders encouraged as well as cashless payment
COVID-19 Update:
  • King County did not qualify for Phase 2 of the Start Safe Plan, but has applied to move to a modified Phase 1.
  • Phase 1.5 would allow outdoor gatherings of 5 people or less, retail, outdoor seating at restaurants, personal and professional services, pet grooming, and additional construction.
  • You can find updates at shorelinewa.gov/covid and see if the application is accepted.
Face Coverings Directive

Public Health directs residents to wear a face covering in any indoor or outdoor space where you may be within 6’ of someone who does not live with you, use cloth face coverings not medical masks, and make sure to cover your nose and mouth at all times.

Businesses must post signage on their face mask requirements.

City Hall and recreation facilities remain closed at this time.

There are no changes to the park and active recreation areas:
  • All public and private gatherings are prohibited. 
  • Playgrounds, sports courts, picnic shelters, and ball fields remain closed. 
  • The Richmond Beach Saltwater Park parking lot also remains closed. The Richmond Beach parking lot will open when we reach Phase 2. 
  • Crossing the railroad tracks on foot is against the law and extremely dangerous. Use only allowed crossings. 
  • Police will continue to conduct emphasis patrols. 
  • School playfields and playgrounds are under the direction of the School District and they ask that residents follow the same State regulations regarding use.
If you need help:
  • Hopelink Food Bank and Supplemental Weekend Food Support are food resources
  • Statewide moratorium on evictions, including commercial occupancies
  • Utilities will remain on
  • Unemployment benefits have been expanded
  • Health Benefits Exchange is enrolling
  • Call 211 for other resources
Public Notices

Planning commission will meet remotely Thursday, June 4th at 7:00pm. This will be a Public Hearing regarding Amendments to Floodplain Management.

Sign up to provide oral testimony at shorelinewa.gov/calendar

Council Reports

Councilmember McConnell attended the May 19th King County Combined Transportation Boards Zoom meeting. The discussion was about the COVID-19 effect on Metro ridership. Ridership is way down, even though fares have been eliminated, because it is used primarily for essential travel. Even as we move through recovery phases, ridership will still be significantly depressed as more companies allow continued work from home. Also the public appears to be reluctant to take public transit at this time.

Councilmember Roberts reported that the Puget Sound Regional Council Executive Board has recommended to the General Assembly the budget for 2020 to 2021 with no dues increase.

The meeting of the General Assembly is June 25th and all councilmembers are invited and encouraged to attend.

Mayor Hall reminded everyone to wear orange on June 5th in support of National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

Public Comment (remotely)

The following residents spoke in favor of retaining old growth trees in Shoreline:

Brandon Hogengarten
Rebecca Jones
Kathleen Russell

Written comments are available online.

The Agenda was adopted unanimously.

The Consent Calendar was adopted unanimously by role call vote.

Action Items

8(a) Public Hearing and Adoption of Resolution No. 458 - Adopting the 2021-2026 Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP)

Nytasha Walters, Transportation Services Manager, gave the staff report

The draft 2021-2026 TIP was presented to the City Council on April 6th for discussion. As a result of the Council discussion, there were no modifications to the draft.

The public hearing taking place now was postponed due to the Governor’s Emergency Proclamation 20-28 regarding health concerns of COVID-19.

Additional information since last meeting

How will anticipated decrease in sales tax revenues for much of 2020 effect the new sidewalks construction? Staff was conservative in estimating revenue to be used for sidewalk projects and as a result believe funds will be adequate to complete several projects in the next four years as planned.

Staff is pursuing additional grants for Safe Routes to School funding. Ridgecrest is funded. This is important due to the construction and changes resulting from light rail and the 148th non-motorized bridge.

New sources of revenue continue to be sought because of the removal of vehicle license fees (I-976)

No changes were made to the Transportation Improvement Plan as a result of this additional information.

Public hearing opened. Since there was no public testimony, the hearing was closed.

Discussion

There was no additional discussion.
Move and second to approve Resolution 458.
Vote by roll call: adopted 7-0.

8(b) Adoption of Resolution No. 459 – Temporarily Authorizing Meetings and Public Hearings to be Held Remotely Due to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

Margaret King, City Attorney

Staff recommends that the City Council adopt Resolution No. 459 permitting remote meetings and public hearings until the City Council determines it is safe to conduct meetings in a different fashion.

City Council Rule 5.3 currently provides that regular meetings are to be held in Council Chambers at Shoreline City Hall and open to the public. The adoption by the City Council of Resolution 459 would allow the Council to temporarily suspend the location of meetings at City Hall and to instead use appropriate technology to conduct and allow the public to attend and watch or listen electronically or "virtually" in real time, as well as to provide public comment and testimony by electronic means.

Council meetings have been conducted remotely due to the Stay Safe, Stay Home health proclamation by Governor Inslee. It will be impossible to have meetings until Phase 3 unless 459 is adopted.

PUBLIC COMMENT (because it’s on the agenda for the first time tonight)

Ann McFarland, Shoreline, spoke in favor of the resolution.

DISCUSSION

Move and second to approve the Resolution.

Resolution 458 is very tightly written and will allow Council to move smoothly towards getting back to normal. All other regular rules remain in effect. Public access and comments are working well.

Resolution passed by roll call vote 7-0

8 (c) Adoption of Ordinance No. 889 - Amending Chapter 10.05 SMC, the Model Traffic Ordinance, for Clarity and to Establish a City Monetary Penalty for Parking Violations

Randy Witt, Public Works Director, gave the staff report

Staff recommends that the City Council adopt proposed Ordinance No. 889, which amends chapter 10.05 SMC, the Model Traffic Ordinance, to set a minimum monetary penalty for parking violations at $50, establish a $25 delinquency penalty, and make additional clerical corrections.

This meeting addresses concerns brought by Councilmembers at the May 18, 2020 meeting.

This proposal came about as a result of the light rail subareas parking study presented October 2019. It was determined that the net cost to the City was about $10/citation and there was an increase in parking issues over the last several years.

Council’s concerns in May were that $50 is too high and regressive, as well as higher than Seattle and Edmonds. Also, the $25 delinquency penalty is too high at 50% of the initial ticket.

Parking enforcement provides an important contribution to public safety and the quality of life experienced by residents. This will become more apparent when the light rail stations open and increased density evolves.

Discussion

Motion and second to approve the ordinance.

$50 seems high but is enough to act as an incentive to discourage parking.

Councilmember Roberts moved to add proposed amendment to start at $40/citation effective 01/01/2021 and, beginning 01/01/2023, establish a new penalty of $50.

There is no point in raising the fine more than we have to, or until we have a parking enforcement officer. The light rail station is not yet open, so let’s increase the fine in two steps. The cost of living may be higher and $50 may not have as big an impact on lower income individuals. $50 is close enough to other surrounding cities. This increase in fines will not pay for processing tickets nor pay for dedicated parking enforcement. Fines are for enforcement of parking regulations.

Amendment passes by a vote of 4-3.

Opposed: Mayor Hall and Councilmembers Chang and McGlashan.

Vote on main motion as amended. Passes 6-1 with Councilmember McGlashan opposed.

Study Item

9 (a) Discussion of the Project Status and Progress for the N 148th Street Non-Motorized Bridge Project

Lea Bonebrake, Capital Projects Manager

The project goals are to provide a non-motorized bridge to directly connect neighborhoods west of Interstate-5 with the future 145th Street/Shoreline South light rail station, which will in turn connect users to centers of employment, commerce and educational opportunities. Meeting these goals will improve access, provide improved safely and reduced travel times and increase walk-shed and bicycle connectivity. It will also connect neighborhoods on either side of I-5.

The design of the bridge has been broken down into three project components: 1) West Trail Connection, 2) the Bridge Structure and 3) East Bridge Landing.

Evaluation of the options considered user safety and security, travel time, connectivity, costs, aesthetics, operations and maintenance, ease of stakeholder approval, right of way requirements and public feedback.

The full Feasibility Study is available HERE

Staff Recommendations

Preferred Design Recommendations:

  1. West Trail Connection – Option 3: Full Build-Out (North)
  2. Bridge Structure – Option 2: Tied Arch
  3. East Bridge Landing – Option 3: Direct Ramp

Bridge Cover (Canopy) Recommendation:

Delay including a canopy in the design until later in the design process.

Project Funding and Delivery Strategy Recommendation:

Continue with Alternative 2.2C Proceed with design to 30% with the intent of progressing to full design, property acquisition and construction of the east bridge landing. This landing is the most critical element to complete prior to light rail going into operation. Once light rail is active, it will be much harder to construct over and around it. Based on these estimates, current funding would cover this construction. Construction of the remaining project elements would occur after light rail opens in 2025. Costs for construction of the delayed elements are likely to increase the current estimates

DISCUSSION

Why the canopy? Other freeway bridges don’t have canopies. We do have wind and rain here. But the canopy doesn’t extend past the bridge. Some people think it will reduce noise and provide some protection from the elements making it more attractive to take.

Connection directly to trail is better than just to the station because not everyone would be going to the station.

West trail property all belongs to churches and is zoned UR-70. This alternative shifts the trail alignment north to minimize impact to both the significant trees and the existing church parking. There are no tree retention requirements in UR-70. Moving the path north to save trees may not be effective if the property is eventually sold. If we don’t cut trees now, future owners could cut them down because of the UR-70 zoning. Shoreline tree retention has been part of the design phase. There is considerable public support for maintaining the tree canopy.

Funding gap. If the bridge isn’t built, it’s possible we would have to return about $5.7 million. Nytasha Walters, Transportation Services Manager, responded: We have several funding sources. What we have now is “design money” that has to be returned if it is not used. 

Our plan is to spend this money during the design phase which is first. Phase funding was successful for the Aurora Ave project. In this case, each phase has 10 years. We will focus on the east bridge landing now, and complete the rest after light rail opens. Staff and Council are working closely with legislators for additional funding. There is a lot of strong support for this project. 

Puget Sound Regional Council has provided funding, and that commitment means they want this project completed and it will be ranked highly in future funding cycles. Overall council is optimistic about future funding. Governor Inslee thinks we need to build our way out of the economy. This is a project in the works that will hire people now - not a project to just get started on. We built our way out of the last recession so we know it is the best way to bring our economy back.

Do we know what the pedestrian/bike volume will be on the bridge? Nytasha responds she doesn’t have numbers, but there is time saved traveling to and from light rail, metro, BRT (bus rapid transit) and the neighborhoods. Adding together people accessing the train, buses, neighborhoods, attending church functions, or just walking or biking will result in significant use.

Any luck in renaming the station? It’s 3 blocks away from 145th. It is important so when you get off on 145th, you’re actually on 145th. If you’re on148th, the station should be named 148th. Debbie Tarry: we have learned it can be done.

Meeting adjourned.



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