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West Seattle Bridge Update; Sound Transit Station Planning Progress Reports; Rent Control for Small Businesses – Spread the Word; SDOT and SPU Winter Storm After-Action Report; District 1 Community Network Safety discussion; CPC/Police Monitor Outreach Meeting on Stops and Detentions; Take the Pickleball Survey; Virtual Office Hours

West Seattle Bridge Update

Last weekend the construction contractor completed the installation for the second external bridge platform. This will allow carbon fiber wrap and epoxy injections to be applied to the exterior of the bridge.

The West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force will be meeting on February 10.

Sound Transit Station Planning Progress Reports

In addition to the Draft EIS, the Sound Transit website includes station planning progress reports. These reports are designed to complement the Draft EIS, with information about station planning, context, access and connections.

Here’s a link to the January 2022 West Seattle Link Extension Station Planning Progress Report, which covers the three West Seattle stations as well as SODO station.  You can also access the station planning progress reports for each individual station:

You can access the station planning progress reports for each station on the line from SODO to Ballard by clicking on the “Additional materials” link.

Here’s a guide for Introduction and Navigating the Report.

Sound Transit’s West Seattle/Duwamish Community Advisory Group will be meeting on Tuesday, February 8 from 5 to 7 p.m. Sound Transit will be presenting an overview of the Draft EIS results.

The meeting agenda will be available on the “Advisory groups” tab of the West Seattle and Ballard project webpage. Here’s a link for the live stream.

Rent Control for Small Businesses – Spread the Word

Recently my office has heard from several small businesses concerned about rent increases.  Please help spread the word that, during the pandemic emergency, small businesses and nonprofits are protected by commercial rent control and payment plans legislation that I sponsored in April 2020.

  • For tenants with a month-to-month lease, landlords cannot increase rent charged to a small business or nonprofit until the Civil Emergency Proclaimed by Mayor on March 3, 2020 is terminated.
  • For tenants with fixed-term leases, the landlord cannot:
    • Increase the rent charged, unless the increase was in the lease before 4/13/20; or
    • Renew the lease or enter into a new lease and increase the rent amount.

Landlords are also required to work with tenants to establish reasonable repayment plans for arrears.  Payment plans can’t require payment of more than 1/3 of arrears in any month, and payments may extend for one year after the Civil Emergency ends.

Need assistance to exercise these protections?  Here are some options:

SDOT and SPU Winter Storm After-Action Report

On Wednesday the Transportation and Seattle Public Utilities Committee heard presentations from both SDOT and SPU about their winter weather responses. I want to focus specifically on SPU’s report on flooding and sewer backups experienced in South Park, this starts on page 8 of SPU’s presentation linked above.

Beginning January 1 and lasting through the 7th we experienced snow melt along with a significant 10-year storm which brought a large amount of rain. Adding to the difficulties was a King Tide event. I’ve written about how King Tide events effect South Park here.

The graph below shows the large amount of rainfall received in a short period of time, but also the yellow line shows how high the King Tide was, which was two feet higher than anticipated.

The combination of so much rain and snow melt, along with the high King Tide led to flooding and sewer backups for some in South Park. The City and SPU are working to ease the flooding issues in South Park, you can read about the Conveyance Project here, and the Pump Station here. These projects, however, will only help with flooding issues. Issues related to sewer backflows are the County’s responsibility as they have jurisdiction over the sewer lines. SPU is committed to working with the County to address these issues holistically.

As SPU Interim General Manager Andrew Lee said during committee – while this event is extraordinary by our historical standards, it will be ordinary in the future if we don’t take steps to address climate change.

District 1 Community Network Safety Discussion

Earlier this week I met with the District 1 Community Network (D1CN) to discuss public safety and Seattle’s community safety initiatives.

I noted that the full year data for 2021 showed that crime increased 10% citywide compared to 2020. The number of shots fired increased as well. With so many police officers having left the department over the last 2 years, this highlights the need for additional alternative responses.  The Seattle Police Department released its 2021 Year-End Crime Report which, as I shared at D1CN earlier this week, shows increases in violent crime and gun violence compared to 2020.

Here’s a link to the presentation I gave to the D1CN about the Council and Executive’s community safety work including: 911 call analysis and expansion of each the Community Service Officer Program, Health One, and Mobile Crisis Teams; as well as new initiatives such as Triage One.

Representatives from the LEAD program, as well as the YMCA’s Alive & Free West Seattle community safety hub also presented about the work they are doing.

Earlier today, Mayor Harrell held a press conference. I applaud his attention to community safety in Seattle and calling for a multilayered approach to address the challenges we face. Here is a statement I released noting funding the Council has approved for both traditional public safety and innovative community safety approaches.

CPC/Police Monitor Outreach Meeting on Stops and Detentions

The Consent Decree Monitor and the Community Police Commission will be holding the second in a series of community engagement meetings on Tuesday, February 8. The focus of this meeting will be Stops and Detentions. The Monitor’s website notes:

“The assessment of stops and detentions will include statistical analysis of SPD stop trends overall, and broken out by demographics, over time. The assessment will include statistics regarding the frequency of frisks and how often frisks result in the discovery of weapons. The report will include a review of the quality of SPD stop practices and supervision of these practices to assess SPD’s compliance with Constitutional requirements pertaining to stops and frisks.”

To join the Zoom meeting and participate, you can go to:

https://zoom.us/j/96694242277?pwd=N2F0ekFib3R0R2dpNTQvNW9qTXlzQT09

Meeting ID: 966 9424 2277

Passcode: 948051

The Monitor will be publishing a Preliminary Assessment of Stops and Detentions, which will be available at the Monitor’s site.

In January Chief Diaz updated policies regarding traffic stops on the SPD blotter, which links to a letter to Inspector General Judge. This follows from a collaborative process between SPD, the Inspector General, SDOT and other stakeholders outside government.

Take the Pickleball Survey

Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) is seeking input from tennis and pickleball players on how to best support the growth of pickleball. Everyone is encouraged to participate in a short survey. Whether you play pickleball or not, your thoughts are invaluable as SPR plans for the future of this sport in Seattle.

Your answers to the survey questions will inform how SPR:

  • Approaches immediate improvements such as dual striping existing tennis courts for pickleball (for which some funding is available now);
  • Adds pickleball lines to tennis courts during programmatic resurfacing and renovation projects; and
  • Develops options for future dedicated pickleball courts (yet to be funded).

This survey is part of the 2021-2022 Pickleball Study funded by the Seattle Park District. An advisory committee is meeting throughout the study and additional community engagement will include two public meetings. Dates and venues for the meetings will be posted on the project page.

To find out more about the study and to subscribe to updates please visit https://www.seattle.gov/parks/about-us/projects/2021-2022-outdoor-pickleball-study or contact Oliver Bazinet at oliver.bazinet@seattle.gov.

Virtual Office Hours

On Friday February 25, I will be hosting virtual office hours between 2pm and 6pm, with the last meeting of the day beginning at 5:30pm.

Due to the nature of virtual office hours, please contact my scheduler Alex Clardy (alex.clardy@seattle.gov) in order to receive the call-in information and schedule a time.

Additionally, here is a list of my tentatively scheduled office hours which will continue as virtual office hours until indicated otherwise. These are subject to change.

  • Friday, March 25, 2022
  • Friday, April 29, 2022
  • Friday, May 27, 2022
  • Friday, June 24, 2022
  • Friday, July 29, 2022
  • Friday, August 19, 2022
  • Friday, September 30, 2022
  • Friday, October 28, 2022
  • Friday, December 16, 2022
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