Compiled by Barry MacHale
Action Taken at the June 7, 2022 Meeting
Shall the council:
150. Authorize the executive to sign a $57,1245 contract with Lydia Place for provide funding for a new housing program known as Heart House? A newly constructed 11-unit housing facility, Heart House, provides housing to families with children exiting homelessness and it includes a licensed childcare facility. Families will be referred to the facility through the Whatcom Homeless Service Center. (AB2022-300) Approved 7-0
151. Authorize the executive to accept a $4,099,797 state grant (amendment #1) to fund services for individuals with developmental disabilities? The original grant for $4,125,535 was approved at the 7/13/2021 meeting, vote #162. Services to be provided include community access and employment support for adults and child development services from birth to age three. This amendment extends the contract for a year, increases funding, and revises the scope of work included. The total amended contract is $8,225,332; it expires on 6/30/2023. (AB2022-306) Approved 7-0
152. Authorize the executive to accept a $36,795 federal grant (amendment #4) to fund public health services? Health services to be funded include: coronavirus vaccination and response programs; youth marijuana-use education and prevention activities; and maternal and infant health programs. The total amended contract is $5,959,895; it expires on 12/31/2024. (AB2022-310) Approved 7-0
153. Authorize the executive to accept a $690,000 state grant (amendment #1) for the rural arterial program? At the 6/15/2021 meeting, vote #136, the council voted to accept the original $170,100 state grant. This amendment adds an increase of funding to the 4.65-mile Hampton Rd. pavement rehabilitation project. The total amended amount is $860,100; it expires on project completion. (AB2022-313) Approved 7-0
154. Authorize the executive to award the low bid of $327,429 to American Construction Co. of Tacoma for the Lummi Island ferry terminal dolphin repair project? The engineer’s estimate was $301,007. Two bids were received; the high bid was $427,884. The work includes monitoring protected species and eelgrass and macroalgae protection. (AB2022-328) Approved 7-0
155. Update the appendix of the 2022 Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS)? State law requires grant applicants seeking public works funding from the state Economic Development Administration to develop and update an economic development plan. At the 8/13/2002 meeting, vote #154, council adopted the first Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy and updated it every five years. It was last updated at the 2/8/2022 meeting, vote #43. This update will include a change to the Port of Bellingham project utilizing EDI funding. AB2022-305 (Resolution 2022-030) Approved 7-0
156. Submit to the qualified electors of Whatcom County a proposal authorizing the county to lift the limit on regular property taxes? (Public hearing held.) A proposition to approve or reject a 10-year property tax levy of 19 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation would be presented to the voters in a special election held concurrently with the November 8, 2022, general election. The amount collected will be approximately $8,200,000 annually. Revenue from the levy would fund programs that provide childcare, early learning programs, and increased support for vulnerable children. AB2022-303 (Ordinance 2022-045) Adopted 5-1-1, Joe Elenbaas opposed, Tyler Byrd abstained.
157. Amend Whatcom County code related to the roster for small works contracts and requirements for bids and proposals? These amendments are intended to limit cost inefficiencies in the bid and request-for-proposal process by establishing procedures for contracting services from non-profit organizations. Sole-source purchases shall not be required to go through competitive bidding. The county executive or designee may determine a sole-source. AB2022-280 (Ordinance 2022-046) Amended and adopted 5-2, Tyler Byrd and Joe Elenbaas opposed.
158. Amend the 2022 budget (request #8a) in the amount of $1,500,000? Appropriated: $1,500,000 from the Conservation Futures Fund to partially fund phase-one land acquisition activities as part of the Stewart Mountain Community Forest development project. To meet the $2,345,000 total sale price of the 550-acre property the county ($1,500,000) is partnering with the Evergreen Land Trust ($300,000) and the Whatcom Land Trust ($545,000). AB2022-319 (Ordinance 2022-047) Adopted 5-2, Tyler Byrd and Joe Elenbaas opposed.
Action Taken at June 21, 2022 Meeting
Shall the council:
159. Authorize the executive to sign a $76,800 contract (amendment #1) with the City of Bellingham to provide funding to support the Ground Level Response and Coordinated Engagement (GRACE) program? Whatcom County replaced the SeaMar Community Health Centers as the administrator of the GRACE program resulting in increased costs. At the Bellingham City Council meeting on 1/28/2019 meeting, vote #13, the mayor was authorized to sign a $140,000 per calendar-year agreement with Whatcom County to support the creation of the GRACE program. The program goals are to reduce first responder calls, emergency department visits, arrests, and jail admissions while improving health, well-being, and stability among heavy users of public services. In addition to the city and county councils, participating community partners in the GRACE program include PeaceHealth Medical Center, SeaMar Community Health Centers, area municipalities, and tribal nations. The purpose of the amendment is to increase the City of Bellingham’s contribution by 32 percent to reflect increased program costs. The total amended contract is $356,800; it expires on 12/31/2022. (AB2022-333) Approved 7-0
160. Authorize the executive to accept a $188,727 federal grant from the Office of National Drug Control Policy? The contract will provide partial reimbursement for drug court and the salaries and benefits for two employees in the prosecutor’s office working on drug trafficking and other cases. The grant expires on 12/31/2023. (AB2022-338) Approved 7-0
161. Authorize for the executive to sign a contract not to exceed $2,530,694 with the Opportunity Council to provide administration services for the Housing and Essential Needs (HEN) Program? The HEN program provides rent and utility assistance, essential needs items, and case management for eligible low-income participants. The amendment will: redefine the administrative structure of the program; remove specific non-compliance measures; reduce households served with rent, utility, and basic needs items to reflect increasing costs of supplies and services. The contract expires on 6/30/2023. (AB2022-340) Approved 6-1, Tyler Byrd opposed.
162. Authorize the executive to sign contracts with the cities of Bellingham, Everson, Lynden, Nooksack, and Sumas to address planning, annexation and development within urban growth areas? (Public hearing held.) Ten-year agreements with seven cities (Bellingham, Blaine, Everson, Ferndale, Lynden, Nooksack and Sumas) were last approved at the 3/27/2012 meeting, vote #51. Specifics in the new contracts cover growth management planning, land capacity, population and employment, annexations, processing application prior to annexations, permit processing after annexations, roads and stormwater facilities, water resource management, parks, open space and recreation facilities, provision of services, sales tax revenue sharing, resource lands and rural areas and other provisions. The new expiration date is 6/30/2032. (AB2022-346) The contract with Bellingham was approved 5-2, Tyler Byrd and Ben Elenbaas opposed. Contracts with Everson, Lynden, Nooksack, and Sumas were approved 6-1, Ben Elenbaas opposed.
163. Authorize for the executive to accept a $1,445,087 federal grant (supplement #6) for the Birch Bay Drive & Pedestrian Facility Project? The total estimated project cost is $15,291,786. The grant requires a county match of $195,087. At the 11/20/2012 meeting, vote #199, council approved a project fund for the 1.58-mile-long project to develop a berm/trail to minimize beach erosion and storm damage, and to promote bicycling and walking. See the March 2021 issue of Whatcom Watch for an article about the project. The total amended amount is $7,108,543; it expires upon completion of the project. (AB2022-349)Approved 7-0
164. Authorize for the executive to sign a $328,650 contract (amendment #8) with Catholic Community Services to support permanent supportive housing at Francis Place? A 42-unit apartment building, Francis Place provides affordable, permanent supportive housing for individuals experiencing homelessness and behavioral health disorders. At the 6/4/2019 meeting, vote #119, the council initially approved the Frances Place contract for $288,916. The purpose of the amendment is to extend the length of the contract for one year. The total amended contract is $1,119,155; it expires on 6/30/2023. (AB2022-352) Approved 7-0
165. Authorize for the executive to sign a $242,648 contract with the Opportunity Council to support operations at the 22 North permanent supportive housing facility? The funding provides funding for 24/7/365 facility-based staffing. The 22 North facility is a 40-unit apartment building that provides affordable, permanent supportive housing for individuals experiencing homelessness and behavioral health disorders The contract expires on 12/31/2022. (AB2022-357) Approved 5-2, Tyler Byrd and Ben Elenbaas opposed.
166. Amend the 2022 Flood Control Zone District and subzones budget (request #3) in the amount of $5,250,617? (Council acting as the flood control district board of supervisors.) Appropriated: $187,075 to fund two new flood control program staff positions; $1,950,000 to fund voluntary buy-out and elevation programs for flood-impacted areas; $450,000 to fund integrated floodplain planning processes; $270,000 to fund Timon Levee rehabilitation projects; $115,000 fund flood damage repairs for the Upper Hampton levee; $1,200,000 to fund a bank stabilization project at the Everson Overflow pipeline; $987,000 to fund a deflection berm project at Jones Creek; $281,775 in federal grants for project reimbursement increases; $91,542 to fund a Natural Resources Environmental Manager position at Public Works. AB2022-322 (Resolution 2022-031) Approved 7-0
167. Adopt amendments to Whatcom County Code related to zoning and energy storage? (Public hearing held.) This amendments will permit battery energy storage systems (BESS) and subject them to regulations that limit total megawatt storage capacity and percent of total lot area allowed to be occupied by battery systems. These regulations would apply only to battery energy storage systems located within one mile of an existing substation. AB2021-424 (Ordinance 2022-048) Approved 7-0
168. Close the Agate Heights/Estate Bay Lane Stormwater Improvements Fund 365? At the 11/25/2014 meeting, vote #232, the council created the fund and a $610,000 project-based budget. The project treated runoff from approximately 90 acres through the installation of bio-infiltration swales and channel stabilization. The real estate excise tax contributed $1,298,219 towards the project. The project has been completed and the fund is no longer needed. The remaining cash balance of $194,213 will be returned to the REET II fund. AB2022-320 (Ordinance 2022-049) Adopted 7-0
169. Close the Northshore Drive/Edgewater Lane Stormwater Improvements Fund 381? At the 11/7/2018 meeting, vote #174, the council created the fund and a $220,000 project-based budget. The project will improve water quality in the Lake Whatcom watershed by substantially reducing the discharge of phosphorus and other pollutants into the lake. It will treat runoff from approximately 33 acres of land using filter vaults. The project has been completed and the fund is no longer needed. The real estate excise tax contributed $600,000 towards the project.The remaining cash balance of $143,678 will be returned to the REET II fund. AB2022-321 (Ordinance 2022-050) Adopted 7-0
170. Amend by $10,475,000 the project-based budget (request #1) for the North Lake Samish Road Bridge No. 107 Replacement Fund? At the 11/20/2018 meeting, vote #201, the council voted to establish the replacement fund and a $770,000 project-based budget. The project will replace a 250-foot timber bridge that is structurally deficient. Whatcom County has been awarded $8,997,310 in federal bridge replacement funds. The project is listed as item number B4 on the six-year transportation plan. The total amended budget is $11,245,000. AB2022-326 (Ordinance 2022-051) Adopted 7-0
171. Amend by $295,000 the project-based budget (request #1) for the Shallow Shore Culvert Relocation Fund? At the 11/24/2020 meeting, vote #247, the council established the relocation fund and the $100,000 project-based budget. The project is listed as item number one for Lake Samish Basin in the six-year water resources improvement program and will address flooding by relocating the existing outfall 300 feet to the north. The total amended budget is $395,000. AB2022-327 (Ordinance 2022-052) Adopted 7-0
172. Amend (request #9) the 2022 budget in the amount of $15,838,261? Appropriated: $59,637 to fund a new chief appraiser position at the assessor’s office; $41,000 to fund moving expenses at the Health Department; $17,000 to partially fund a new natural resources environmental manager at Public Works; $43,706 to fund a new records assistant position at the Prosecuting Attorney’s office; $67,296 to fund a new investigator supervisor position at the Prosecuting Attorney’s office; $2,500 to fund organized crime and drug enforcement investigations at the sheriff’s office; $10,236 to fund the purchase of less-than-lethal weapons at the sheriff’s office; $827,690 to fund the North Lake Samish Road bridge replacement project; $68,946 to fund the addition of a new accounting supervisor position and reclassification of an existing clerk position at Public Works; $440,000 to fund Swift Creek maintenance; $2,200,000 to fund the acquisition of affordable housing properties; $1,090,250 to partially fund two agricultural and one forestry conservation easements; $295,000 to fund the Shallow Short culvert relocation project; and $10,675,000 to fund infrastructure allocations from Economic Development Initiative (EDI)* funding. AB2022-329 (Ordinance 2022-053) Adopted 7-0.
*EDI Infrastructure Projects:
Lynden – five projects $2,250,000, total cost: $4,800,000; Blaine – two projects $3,000,000, total cost: $8,500,000; Ferndale – three projects $1,300,000, total cost: $3,800,000; Port of Bellingham – one project $1,500,000, total cost: $3,000,00 and Bellingham – one project $2,625,000, total cost $7,000,000.