Bellingham City Council

Compiled by Boris Schleinkofer

Action Taken at November 9, 2015 Meeting

Shall the council:
211. Ratify the Bellingham Police Guild collective bargaining agreement? Terms for the 2014-2016 contract: general wages will increase by two percent on 1/1/2016, the wages for the officer in charge of hazardous devices/materials will increase by three percent, the canine master trainer by six percent, and the SWAT sergeant’s premium will increase by three percent. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 7-0

212. Ratify the AFSCME, Local 114 three year collective bargaining agreement? Wages for the  2015-2017 contract will increase by two percent on 1/1/2015, three percent on 1/1/2016, two percent on 1/1/2017, and .5 percent on 7/1/2017. Additionally, the 2015 employer and employee contributions to benefits will remain the same as implemented on 1/1/2015. In 2016, the employer contribution is capped at a 5 percent increase above the 2015 employer contribution for Group Health. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 7-0

213. Absorb the Transportation Benefits District and assume all of its functions and obligations? (Public hearing held) At the 7/12/2010 meeting, vote #144, the City Council established the Bellingham Transportation Benefit District as a separate entity. In 2015, the state enacted legislation that allows the city to assimilate the Transportation Benefit District. Cost savings in managing the district will be realized as well as a reduction in state auditing fees of approximately $5,300 per audit. (AB21027) Approved 7-0

214. Authorize the mayor to sign a renewal agreement with the Bellingham Housing Authority for police services? This drug and crime prevention program has been in place since 2000; the housing authority will pay the city up to $105,000 and provide office space for a officer to work directly with staff and residents of housing authority properties and surrounding neighborhoods. The officer will provide both law enforcement and crime prevention services such as setting up block watch meetings, coordinating with the police department crime prevention units in targeted neighborhoods, working to locate drug dealers and providing counseling to juveniles at risk of drug involvement, doing a weekly inspection of multi-family developments and filing monthly reports with the housing authority and an annual report with the city. The officer will be available to residents and staff Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. This agreement runs from 1/14/2016 through 1/13/2017? (AB21031) Approved 7-0

215. Declare a substantial need for the purposes of increasing the 2016 property tax levy rate? (Public hearing held on 10/26/2015) The Revised Code of Washington provides that a taxing jurisdiction may levy taxes in an amount no more than the limit factor as measured by the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ implicit price deflator for personal consumption expenditures (also known as ‘inflation’). For 2015, the resulting implicit price deflator increase of 0.251 percent is less than the statutorily-allowed one percent. Therefore, a resolution of substantial need is necessary in order to increase the property tax levy to the full one percent. AB21032 (Resolution 2015-23) Approved 7-0

216. Set the time and dates for 2016 regular council meetings? Twenty-five meetings are scheduled for 2016, one more than was scheduled for 2015. Meeting time will be 7:00 p.m. and Roberts Rules of Order are to be used unless otherwise provided by Charter. Dates for meetings can be found at AB21034 (Resolution 2015-24) Approved 7-0

217. Protect the Korean War Children’s Memorial in Big Rock Garden Park? The Korean War Children’s Memorial is the only war memorial in the United States that honors veterans for their compassionate and humanitarian aid to the innocent children of that war. This resolution will prevent any modification to either the bronze plaque attached to the pavilion or the adjacent Korean granite pagoda and garden lantern unless first approved by a vote of the Bellingham City Council taken only after consultation with local veterans’ associations. AB21035 (Resolution 2015-25) Approved 7-0

218. Appropriate $7,021,893 for goods and services checks issued from October 16 through October 30, 2015? (AB21038/21039) Approved 7-0

219. Authorize the mayor to accept a $360,113 state grant for the purchase of a vactor truck? The  truck will help to prevent total suspended solids, dissolved copper, dissolved zinc, and total phosphorus from entering the Lake Whatcom Watershed by removing pollutants from the stormwater system and providing pollutant source control through an enhanced jet cleaning and vactoring program. Bellingham has for years owned and maintained a single vactor unit for city stormwater purposes. This grant is for a second stormwater vactor unit. This vactor unit will allow the city to modify the current vactor program to include the systematic jet rodding of storm systems within Bellingham and in areas of the Lake Whatcom Watershed. The total cost will be $480,151, with the city contributing $120,038. (AB21040) Approved 7-0

220. Authorize the mayor to accept a $371,686 state grant for the E. North Street phosphorus reduction retrofit project? Lake Whatcom, the drinking water source for over 100,000 Whatcom County residents, has seen a marked decline in water quality as a result of residential development in its watershed. Work performed will improve water quality in Lake Whatcom through installation of water quality facilities including bioretention, media filter drains and/or infiltration trenches at or near 1703 Northshore Drive in the city of Bellingham, and will provide treatment for total suspended solids, oil (total petroleum hydrocarbons), and total phosphorus. This project is presently in the property acquisition phase; this grant will reimburse approximately 75 percent of the construction costs. The total cost will be $495,582, with the city contributing $123,896. (AB21041) Approved 7-0

221. Authorize the mayor to accept a $384,000 state grant for the 2016 stormwater retrofit project? This project will improve water quality in Whatcom Creek and Bellingham Bay through installation of wet vaults and water reuse facilities at 2221 Pacific Street to mitigate runoff from four acres of pollution-generating impervious surfaces. The site encompasses a two block area and is the facility housing Bellingham’s water, sewer, street, traffic and stormwater maintenance vehicles. Also on site is the city’s warehouse, materials storage areas, Public Works operations offices, archive center, the Natural Resources office building, and Bellingham’s fleet maintenance facility. The project will also allow for re-use of a portion of the generated stormwater to use for operational needs, thereby reducing the consumption of potable water. The total cost will be $512,000, with the city contributing $128,000. (AB21042) Approved 7-0

222. Authorize the mayor to accept a $960,783 state grant for 2016 main replacements? This project will help protect and restore water quality in Whatcom Creek, Squalicum Creek and Bellingham Bay by reducing stormwater impacts from existing infrastructure and development through installation of water quality facilities including bioretention, sand filtration or other approved systems. These systems are to be retrofit within portions of Bellingham’s Columbia and Roosevelt neighborhoods, will provide treatment for total suspended solids and oil (total petroleum hydrocarbons), and will also treated for dissolved copper and dissolved zinc. Reductions to flow volumes to Whatcom and Squalicum Creeks will be provided through increases in stormwater infiltration where deemed technically feasible. The total cost will be $1,281,044 and the city’s share will be $320,261. (AB21043) Approved 7-0

223. Appropriate $2,843,702 for payroll checks issued October 10 through October 23, 2015? (AB21044) Approved 7-0

Action Taken at November 16, 2015 Meeting

Shall the council:
224. Authorize the mayor to sign $16,723 settlement agreement for damages relating to a sewer connection? Claim payments in excess of $15,000 requires City Council approval. Tenants at 200 W. Holly reported reported sewer problems in late July of this year. Faber Construction had been doing work for the city and when finished had failed to hook the apartment back up to the mail line resulting in raw sewage backing-up into the building. (Discussed in Executive Session) Approved 6-0, Roxanne Murphy excused.

225. Appropriate $3,188,872 for goods and services checks issued from October 31 through November 6, 2015? (AB21053) Approved 7-0

226. Grant final plat approval for division 2B, phase 2 of The Highlands? Division 2B consists of nine single-family, detached lots served by Westcott Street, a newly de6dicated right of way, east of Newton Street. All applicable conditions have either been completed or financial sureties accepted. The Bellingham Hearing Examiner issued preliminary plat approval for The Highlands phase 2 on 11/10/2003. AB21052 (Resolution 2015-026) Approved 7-0

227. Annex 163.5 acres adjacent to the city on the E. Bakerview Road/Mt. Baker Highway? (Public hearing held at the 10/26/2015 meeting) At the 12/15/2014 meeting, vote #255, the council initiated the annexation petition for the 163-acre area and the Whatcom County Boundary Review Board approved the annexation on 8/7/2015. The area includes approximately 138 acres of residential land zoned Urban Residential Mixed Use (6-12 dwelling units/acre), and 25 acres of industrial land zoned Light Impact Industrial.The annexation includes adjustments to zoning specifics and limitations to dining establishments in the area. Limitations include the size of the facility to be no more than 2,500 square feet, one drivethrough lane that would be no longer than 10 feet and interior seating in the establishment. AB21010 (Ordinance 2015-11-044) Approved 7-0

228. Prohibit smoking in city parks and on trails? The prohibition includes electronic smoking devices. The ordinance includes a review deadline of 12/31/2016 at which time it shall be examined to determine any further changes. Fiscal impact has not been determined at this time; most enforcement costs will likely be covered within existing resources. Public smoking on city property not designated as a smoking area may result in a civil fine of up to $250 and will be assessed in the same manner as traffic infractions. AB21029 (Ordinance 2015-11-045) Approved 6-1, Terry Bornemann opposed.

229. Establish a property tax levy rate for 2016? (Public hearing held at 10/26/2015 meeting) As part of the budget process, the City Council needs to establish the property tax levy rate for the upcoming year. The total anticipated 2016 city property tax levy revenue is projected to be $24.4 million, which includes a low income housing fund of $3 million. This includes a one percent increase in the property tax levy rate levy or $1,544,193 as well as an estimate for additional taxes based upon the value of new construction and other adjustments AB21033 (Ordinance 2015-11-046) Approved 7-0


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