Notes from Shoreline council meeting November 8, 2021

Friday, November 12, 2021

Pam Cross, reporter
Shoreline City Council Meeting
November 8, 2021

Notes by Pam Cross

Deputy Mayor Scully called the remote meeting to order at 7:00pm.

Mayor Hall was excused for personal reasons.

I, Will Hall, Mayor of the City of Shoreline, on behalf of the Shoreline City Council, do hereby proclaim November 11, 2021 as VETERANS APPRECIATION DAY in the City of Shoreline and urge all citizens to honor the sacrifices of the loyal and courageous Veterans who have given so much for the cause of peace.

Approval of the Agenda
Agenda adopted by unanimous consent.

Report of the City Manager Debbie Tarry


Good news continues as case rates continue to slowly decline statewide. But we are still at a level of high transmission of COVID-19 infections. Shoreline has finally taken a downward trajectory, but due to the persistent high rate we must continue to take precautions.

Wear a mask, even if you are fully vaccinated. We encourage you to get be vaccinated and, if eligible, get your booster. Visit for information and eligibility. To find available vaccines, visit

In accordance with the Public Health Order effective 10/25 in all of King County, proof of vaccination or proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken in the last 72 hours will be provided for: indoor dining, bars, and recreational activities of any size - this includes Spartan Recreational Center. More information:

Vaccine for Ages 5-11

Many thanks to our Shoreline Fire Department and SCC for making this resource available to our community. Thanks as well to UW Medicine that is making the vaccines available.

Be sure to attend the Virtual Open House through November 16 for the N 148th Street Non-Motorized Bridge. Learn more and provide your input.


The Shoreline Veterans Association, the Starr Sutherland, Jr. American Legion Post 227, and the City of Shoreline would like to recognize the contributions of the men and women in the military who have served our country and who have given so much for the cause of peace.

This year’s program will be pre-recorded and available to view on Comcast channel 21 on November 11 at 10:00am and again at 3:00pm. The program is also permanently available on the City’s YouTube channel. A link to the event is available at

Be sure to sign up to save your spot!


Saturday, November 13 10:00am
Walk around the Richmond Beach neighborhood including the Richmond Reserve and the Strandberg Preserve. All participants are required to wear masks and maintain social distancing. Dogs on leashes are welcome. No need to sign up in advance.

Meet at: Richmond Beach Congregational Church, (rear parking lot), 15th NW and NW 195th Street.
Walks calendar and information:


In recognition of Veterans Day, City Hall will be closed Nov 11. Spartan Rec will be open and operating on a regular schedule.

Council Reports

Councilmember Chang attended another meeting of the Sound City Association Caucus for the Regional Transit Committee. They spent the meeting looking at Metro’s comments on amendments that the Caucus is proposing. They are trying to get some agreement among the Caucus members and staff in order to go forward and present these amendments at next month’s Regional Transit Committee meeting.

Councilmember McGlashan attended the Seashore Transportation Forum. Metro is starting their Lynnwood Link Connections Mobility project. An overview was presented for this process as they decide which routes to change, add, or subtract with community outreach with special attention paid to underserved communities to ensure they have access to bus rapid transit and the light rail station.

Public Comment

Jackie Kurle, Shoreline
I’ve spoken pretty consistently for the need for full transparency regarding the operations of the shelter. I do hope for the best case success story for all residents of the shelter, for the community, and for the
State as a whole on a broader level. I want to make sure the public is made aware of any happenings at the shelter as well as successes on a regular basis, ideally monthly or quarterly to keep open communication with the public at the forefront of the City’s business.

Bruce Amundson, Shoreline
Please go to Action Item 8(a) Public Hearing for Mr. Amundson’s comments

Approval of the Consent Calendar
Consent Calendar approved unanimously

Action Item 8(a) 8(a) Public Hearing on the 2021-2022 Biennial Budget and the 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Plan Mid-Biennial Update, Including Proposed Ordinance No. 945 Amending the 2021-2022 Biennial Budget According to the Mid-Biennial Budget Modification, Proposed Ordinance No. 946 Setting the 2022 Regular Property Tax Levy, Proposed Ordinance No. 947 Setting the 2022 Fee Schedule for Impact Fees, and Resolution No. 484 setting the 2022 Fee Schedule (Administrative Services)

Rick Kirkwood, Budget and Tax Manager, made the presentation

At the November 1, 2021 City Council Regular Meeting, the City Council was presented a brief financial update, recommended adjustments to the 2021- 2022 Biennial Budget, and provided information on related policy issues.

This is the first Public Hearing on the 2021-2022 Biennial Budget and Revenue Sources, providing an opportunity to comment on the budget update, including all proposed levies, taxes, fees and rates.
Adoption is scheduled for November 15.

Several questions went to Council on a question matrix that was distributed to Council this afternoon. Several public comments were received prior to tonight’s meeting. The Deputy Mayor asked staff to respond to questions posed by Ms. Mork. (Laura Mork served on the Board of Commissioners of the Ronald Sewer District). These document can be viewed on in the document library, or on the agenda for this meeting by clicking on the “comments” link.

Randy Witt, Public Works Director, made the presentation

First, I want to mention that staff has been working on this plan for about 2 years. Part of that is because we were never certain when the assumption (of Ronald Wastewater) would occur. It was agreed we would look at a budget for a wastewater utility after the assumption, which occurred earlier this year.

Public works sees an immediate staffing need to manage the wastewater utility, to assume the district engineer duties, and to initiate the transition from almost fully contracted services to City ownership.

We looked at the Ronald operations and expenditures for the district engineer activities over the last several years. We imagined modeling this the way we do our wastewater utility. This resulted in our request for 1 engineer II watching the system, 1 engineer II for capital projects, an additional construction inspector, and an administrative assistant. We envision a gradual transition period from a consultant approach to a staff lead approach.

We still use outside consultants DEA (David Evans and Associates) who have historical knowledge - I want to emphasize that it is not the City’s plan to move away from all consultants.

I think this hits most of the concerns I’ve read in those questions. There are other questions we can go into if Council would like us to.

Public Hearing is opened.

Bruce Amundson, Shoreline
Regarding the 2022 budget and support for personnel for Arts and Culture program specifically. The public arts coordinator needs to be changed from half-time to full time. The PRCS board voted unanimously the past 2-3 years to recommend to the Council that this be a full time position. The last time the board took this action there was agreement but it was determined that the timing was bad due to economic results of COVID. It is unrealistic for a half-time position to do this job as well as the old internal administrative role. Also in 2022 he will need to lead the new 5 year arts plan which is extremely demanding.

No other comments


Council agreed to hold off this discussion until after Action Item 8(b) presentation and public hearing so it can be discussed as a whole.

8(b) Public Hearing on the 2021-2022 Biennial Budget and 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Plan with Special Emphasis on Proposed Ordinance No. 946 Setting the 2022 Regular Property Tax Levy, Proposed Ordinance No. 947 Setting the 2022 Fee Schedule for Impact Fees, Resolution No. 484 setting the 2022 Fee Schedule, and Other Revenues (Administrative Services)

Rick Kirkwood continues with this presentation

This is the second of two scheduled public hearings on the 2021-2022 Biennial Budget and the 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) Mid-Biennial Update required by state law (RCW 84.55.120) to address revenue sources including consideration of possible increases in property tax revenues.

The 2016 Proposition 1 allows the City to increase the property tax levy by the percentage change of the CPI-U (The Consumer Price Index For All Urban Consumers) which is 5.5%.

Fee schedules generally keep pace with inflation; others are tied to other indices.

Public Hearing is opened.

No comments

Discussion on both of the above agenda items

Currently we don’t do design in-house. So the two engineers II would just be managing the consultant contracts with the idea of having people in house who understand the contracts?
  • Reply: Right now, the design work is done by consultants who are engineer II and tend to be project managers and represent the City throughout the process. That’s not the way we prefer to do it. We would rather do most of the design and have the consultants pick up the large or complex projects or the ones we don’t have time for. But we have a robust capital program and a small staff.
It seems like a big component of this is the institutional memory of DEA. How do you see that being transferred to the City?
  • Reply: It is important. We even experience this here when experienced staff leave and we are working with new staff.
In your presentation tonight you mentioned there will be a bump during the transition process. What is a “bump”?
  • Reply: There will be a period where DEA (David Evans and Associates) is doing the work and we are shadowing them on it, maybe picking up pieces while they show us how to do it. This training and transition will probably go slower and cost more for a while and eventually (hopefully) be less. In the past the costs have ranged from $390k in 2017 to $656k in 2020. Some of the increases were driven by development occurring, and the transitioning of the board with the new board requesting some additional or expanded services. Our agreement with the DEA is $2.27M for two years. This should come down next year. Our cost of increasing in-house staffing is about $525k.
Instead of all at once, should we consider increasing staff more slowly?
  • Reply: I agree, but this is just the start. We need these four positions to see what we can do, and identify the gaps. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the 2023 budget we are looking at adding people to fill the gaps we find. Or we may find ways to streamline.
DEA for next year was projected to cost $2.2M? My notes aren’t clear.
  • Reply: It’s a 2 year contract entered into in May for $2.27M
Did you say next year about $440k of that will be for a new engineer?
  • Reply: First we figured our staffing for next year will be $525k with additional staff coming on board (remember they don’t start at the first of the year). When we hire them, we do not expect to be paying the consultant $440k. That’s where we see the savings. In 2023, when our staff is more experienced, we expect to save an additional $550k. (These are approximate since inflation and stuff like that has not been figured in there).
If we spend money for staff, but still have to spend the $2.27M for the DEA contract, I don’t understand the cost savings.
  • Reply: Let me clarify: we wouldn’t spend the money on the DEA contract.
I think of a contract as being a fixed amount.
  • Reply: We would probably not spend about $220k on the contract because staff could do it, and no $75K for capital projects support because our staff could do it. These items are in the contract, but as the staff learns the system more, our staff engineers can assume these duties. This and similar items total about $550K. Details are provided in the MATRIX.
We just received the multipage Matrix this afternoon and I worked until 4pm so I wasn’t able to get through all of it. So I may be asking questions that are addressed there. I’m still hesitant to do the whole thing. What I’m feeling is we went through the assumption, and the promise to the community was at least some savings - not spending more when we purchased Ronald. Ms. Mork was on the Wastewater commission, and she was very thorough in asking some hard questions. I value her opinion.
  • Reply: If we had DEA continue we would probably have to update that contract and have them do some work they are not doing. But that’s for another conversation.
Do you anticipate, if we don’t take action, $2.27M will be the relatively flat, adjusted for inflation, amount for the next two years?
  • Reply: I don’t have a good feel for that because we want to get more time under our belt owning this system and understand what we need to do. The contract has a lot of capital work in there, having them do the project management as well as design etc. We’d like to know more about what’s going on in the project management.
You’re talking about a rate study next year. Is there funding for that included in the budget?
  • Reply: yes
Can you explain why the staff wants to move forward in advance of the rate study? Instead of waiting for the rate study and then figuring out what our staffing level should be?
  • Reply: the rate study will look at the master plan that Ronald did last year. Master plan and rate study usually occur at the same time so you can look and adjust levels of service. We are using the Ronald plan from the end of last year as kind of our basis. It could modify the staffing but we think this the minimum to start running this as a City utility instead of a contracted service. Consultants are more expensive and less flexible because it’s all in a contract. We hope to offer a better level of service.
Reply by Debbie Tarry: The dollars are going to be spent either through contract services or through staffing. We’re comfortable with starting the transition now.

Go out to bid when the contract ends? Or will it roll over year to year?
  • Reply: We will contract out the next big project, specialty items, and studies that we don’t have the skills or capacity to do.
What is the status of the extensions with this contractor?
  • Reply: We could put it out to bid but we’ve kept with this consultant because of continuity of knowledge.
Impact fees: we are still in the middle compared to the rest of cities. What about transportation fees? Cities near us are a lot lower. Is that a deal breaker for developers?
  • Reply: Transportation impact fees are used for partial payment for projects that serve their developments.
Lowering some of the fees might bring more projects into our community because we can’t offer the same things as Bellevue can, for example. Should we lower a little to get development kick-started? We hear those costs do cause some hesitation and are something we can control.

Developers have to wait a long time to get permits through. Are there open positions? Or do we need to add positions? How do our wait times compare to other cities?
  • Reply by Debbie Tarry: We have been filling vacant positions as people retire but there is obviously a lag time.
We are upping staff in other departments. Where are you on taking the public arts director to full time?
  • Reply Debbie Tarry: we could add positions. But we are not recommending it at this point because we think we have good level right now. Over the last couple of years State building code changes resulted in a bunch of apps coming in before it went into effect. Also, during COVID, staff tried to balance family at home while working. Now kids are back to school so we should be in better position. Contracted services had the same issues. As respects the arts, we continue to believe that we have adequate staff. I believe we discussed this last year. We will look at it again next year as part of the 2023-2024 budget.
I want to talk about the demolition of the Shoreline pool. What will happen with the mural?
  • Reply Debbie Tarry: I don’t believe we can save it - it’s on a very large wall of the building that will be demolished. We are making use of some of the timbers.
  • Sara Lane Administrative Services Director: We haven’t come up with a way to preserve it. Maybe just use the photo to memorialize it.
These mid-bi discussions are usually to address emergencies or other unforeseen things. I’m convinced that the IT specialist and the “hang time person” are things that have come up in the interim because we are in a different paradigm than we expected to be. I’m still concerned on the GIS person and ask why are we switching from a project specific add to a full time add? We’ve had so many specific projects that we just have an expanded need. Special projects extra help is usually funded by the project themselves.
  • Reply Sara Lane: We do anticipate the funding for this position will continue to be from the project as it is currently. We are changing it to an FTE (full time equivalent ) because we anticipate years of project requirements that would require at least this level of support.
I prefer to weigh all the needs of the various departments as part of the 2-year program so we can weigh each department need vs another and look at the totality. I don’t like doing this at the mid-bi. Hope staff can put more detail into what happens if we don’t do it now.
  • Reply Debbie Tarry: I want to clarify that the wastewater staffing is paid for out of utilities so it wouldn’t be an alternative of other fund type services.
Study Item 9(a) Discussion of State Legislative Priorities and Issues of Shared Interest with the 32nd District Delegation

Jim Hammond, Intergovernmental Program Manager

Senator Jesse Salomon, Representative Cindy Ryu, and Representative Lauren Davis (“Delegation”) represent the 32nd Legislative District in Washington State, which includes the City of Shoreline. This discussion with the 32nd District Delegation is informational in nature.

Senator Salomon is Vice Chair of the Senate Agriculture, Water, Natural Resources and Parks Committee, and also sits on the Senate Housing and Local Government Committee, and the Senate Law and Justice Committee.
Rep. Ryu is Chair of the House Community and Economic Development Committee, and also sits on the Appropriations Committee and the Consumer Protection and Business Committee.

Rep. Davis sits on the House Civil Rights and Judiciary Committee, the House Health Care and Wellness Committee, the House Public Safety Committee and the House Rules Committee

Do you have any perspective in how federal infrastructure money going to Washington State might be delegated to various cities within our state?

Ryu: The funds are sorely needed. In the process of putting together statewide transportation budget proposal that I support so looking to infusion of the federal funds.

Davis: I want to mention some of the big issue areas: fiscal implications of behavioral health and housing, K-12 education, transportation, public health, and collective bargaining agreements. We should focus on priorities for Shoreline. There’s a lot unknown for us.
Salomon: In terms of the structure of the session, the senate is going to have a hybrid approach.
This is important for health implications and accessibility for people who are unable to make the drive down to Olympia. Voting will be in-person which I appreciate because you have to be able to talk quickly to several people. I think it will be better than last year.

We will go through our priorities, but it’s a short session and it will be hard to get a lot done. What are your top priorities?

Ryu: Broadband and telecom.We plan to do a lot of work on the policy side of it and the funding of broadband. Also housing supply - a new housing benefits bill will be drafted soon. And a pet project of mine is personal flotation devices. With cold shock people can’t get themselves out of the water even if they are very good swimmers - unless they are wearing a personal flotation device.
It will be a fast and furious 60 day session so we want the bills introduced in first week or they will be dead bills.

Regarding the federal transportation dollars coming our way, should cities push for one large project or several small ones? Or just send them everything we’ve got?

Ryu: None of us serve on the Transportation Committee at this time but we have heard that every single dime has already all been spoken for. It is very competitive. You have to be shovel ready so be as focused as you can and make your best case. For the House democrats the priorities are reliability and adaptability, maintenance and preservation including major replacement needs, and delivering projects of statewide importance. We do have a culverts lawsuit. Removing culverts so salmon can get through is the right thing to do but we need to fix another 600 culverts that will cost a minimum of $2.4B by the 2030 deadline.

Salomon: I keep high hopes even though it’s a short session. They can’t turn on a dime - it’s like turning a ship. If the votes are there, go for it. I’m going to work on things like permit streamlining for housing development. There will be some with connection with the MFTE (Multi-Family Tax Exemption) because supplying housing with urban growth areas and cities is a great need. I don’t want to see development out in the countryside. We need to develop around transit in urban areas.

Police reform is not being implemented as we had hoped. I’m not sure why. We need some fixes put in place. Another reform regarding police arbitration is that often discipline is less or overturned in a sometimes questionable way. This needs to be addressed. Arbitration can make sense but there are areas that should not be addressed behind closed doors.

We need to replace the culverts and I’ll be pushing for money for that. It has to happen. What doesn’t “have to happen” is money for stormwater funding, but I also want to make sure that that happens if I’m going to support a transportation package. We need clean water and to keep dirty runoff from roads out of streams. One easy way of doing that is lining with compost bags.

Davis: (her internet crashed so she missed some of the conversation) I co-chair one of the committees for the children and youth behavioral health work group. There was an increase before COVID so you can imagine how bad it is now. We are working on a slate of investments - medicaid rates, stabilization for the behavioral health system, and the system for community health organizations. We need to not age-out children into homelessness - children in foster care, juvenile rehabilitation or behavioral health. Behavioral health is the worst offender with 2/3 moving into homeless. Another concern is high potentness marijuana that is causing significant issues including long time psychotic issues with people under 25.

We’ve been working on affordable housing. My question is MUR70 zoning with some of the challenges around impact fees. Is there an opportunity for the State to stimulate development by refunding these fees? Getting the first developer in is the hardest. So is there a way the State could help lower impact fees? We want growth to pay for growth but developers have other priorities.

Ryu: These are City collected? (Correct). I can’t image gifting a private developer for market rate housing. If it’s affordable housing there are avenues but we need to talk about that off-line, but it might be too late for the 2022 session. Gerry Pollet, representing the 46th District, has been working diligently for three years on how to get more housing built. This is who you should talk to. I will arrange an introduction.

Salomon: We’d need to talk to the local government. We don’t want them to increase impact fees and then have the State bail them out. There are some logistical questions. I’m working on some other aspects like permit streamlining. It’s not easy.

We’ve had a lot of discussions regarding police and the intersection with behavioral health. One of the issues is the RADAR program that we’ve had some success but it has been way underfunded. Can the State help?

Salomon: There’s potential support: we can give grants for innovative ideas. I’m not a fan of defunding the police. There are calls better done by other professionals other than police, possibly with police backup. I’ve seen RADAR spreadsheet statistics but I need to know if it’s actually working.

Davis: We met recently. (The feed broke up). Local crisis team you don’t need local law enforcement to respond first. 988, the statewide behavioral health emergency line, goes into effect in July 2022. We expect to see a significant increase in calls for service for people in behavioral health distress. We have expanded mobile crisis response. Most can be handled by professionals by phone. We can bill medicaid which is a good deal for the State.

Ryu: I’d like to talk about the Fircrest campus. We’ve been very busy. We are working on about 12 acres on the SW and SE corners. I’ve been convening monthly meetings of stakeholders. The goal is to create a vibrant community for non-profit affordable housing with new construction and infrastructure investment on the entire campus. We are hoping this will jump start private investment in the private property around there.

Would you anticipate that there would be a number of jobs that are being brought to that area?

Ryu,: I don’t think there is any appetite for commercial due to 99 year lease. Most likely will be nonprofits. Activities don’t have to be limited to just housing. Service jobs is a good example. Development helps community and economic development nearby.

Do you think there could be a portion of that acreage that could be designated as open space?

Ryu: Yes - we discussed that a few years ago. More density needs more open space by putting supportive services on the ground floor of multi family housing.

Salomon: Redistricting maps will change the 32nd district. Shoreline is in all of the maps so we get to stay in the district. We could lose Seattle but gain LFP and Kenmore, Brier, Mountlake Terrace. We may lose Edmonds or Lynnwood.

Study Item 9(b) Discussing the 2022 State Legislative Priorities

Council will discuss the upcoming 2022 Legislative Session and the City’s proposed 2022 Legislative Priorities. For 2022, staff proposes the continuation of efforts to secure funding and/or other legislative support for: a bike/pedestrian bridge at N 148th Street that would connect neighborhoods to the Shoreline South/148th Street light rail station; planning support, in collaboration with partner cities, for a regional crisis triage center; and increased investment in behavioral health and misdemeanor court diversion.

Jim Hammond, Intergovernmental Program Manager

Debora Munguia, Lobbyist
We have federal money from the Infrastructure act, and hopefully the Build Back Better will follow.

We can expect there will be a continued focus on Covid recovery relief, affordable housing and homelessness, and climate change.

Our legislative priorities:
  • General policy positions
  • Guide staff during session
  • Generally aligned with Association of Washington Cities (AWC) and Sound Cities Association (SCA)
The AWC Priorities are, among other things:
  • Transportation revenue package
  • Basic infrastructure funding
  • Transportation Benefit District (TBD) funding authority
Shoreline specific interests:
  • N 148th St non-motorized bridge
  • Regional crisis center where people in crisis can be taken

(In February 2021, the Washington State Supreme Court ruled in State v. Blake that the state's felony drug possession statute was unconstitutional)


Let’s make Shoreline doesn’t get the triage center but not the pool.

What are we doing to make sure of the completion of the community and aquatic center?
  • Reply: There really isn’t a home for that issue right now. There is work to be done to determine what a facility would look like.
We need to be doing the groundwork now so we’re ready when the funds become available. What is our strategy to elevate this project?
  • Reply by Debbie Tarry: Council is aware we’ve submitted a joint request to KingCo to do a study with LFP and Kenmore for an aquatic facility. If we are successful, that will give us the basis to go forward and advocate for dollars.
Thank you. I want to keep on top of this as something the community wants. I don’t want it to get lost.

I would like to see added to the energy code priorities is allow cities to amend the local residential code similar to the commercial code. I’d like to see, in addition to our legislative priorities, that we do want the ability to explicitly call out and say that we do want the ability to go beyond what the commercial code is.

Fircrest is such a big item, we can’t discuss it at this time without more time for Mr Hammond to prepare.

Let’s make Shoreline doesn’t get the triage center but not the pool.



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