West Seattle politics – West Seattle Blog… http://westseattleblog.com West Seattle news, 24/7 Mon, 19 Mar 2018 07:02:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.4 VIDEO: Mayor Durkan visits Delridge to announce Seattle Preschool Program additions http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/video-mayor-durkan-visits-delridge-to-announce-seattle-preschool-program-additions/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/video-mayor-durkan-visits-delridge-to-announce-seattle-preschool-program-additions/#respond Thu, 15 Mar 2018 18:02:39 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=911471 (WSB photo by Patrick Sand)

11:02 AM: “I could do that all day!” So exclaimed Mayor Jenny Durkan after spending a few minutes reading to Delridge preschoolers this past hour.

The book: “Pirates Don’t Change Diapers.” The occasion: She visited the preschool at the Immigrant and Refugee Family Center as a backdrop for announcing the ongoing growth of the levy-funded Seattle Preschool Program, which she subsequently did at a portable podium set up elsewhere in the building.

She noted that the program is now four years old. In fact, its original announcement also happened in West Seattle, with then-Mayor Ed Murray and then-Councilmember Tim Burgess talking to reporters and community members in May 2014 at the amphitheater behind Neighborhood House High Point. The four-year levy passed later that year, and is up for renewal this fall. We asked the mayor about that; she said the details are still under development. Meantime, from the media materials distributed at this morning’s event, here’s the list of sites joining those already participating in the city program:

(Delridge Community Center had a different preschool program, not part of the SPP, until early this year, when it was abruptly closed for low enrollment.) We’ll be adding more info about all this later, including video of the mayor’s entire announcement – meantime, she invited interested families to check out the program’s enrollment website at seattle.gov/applyspp.

12:58 PM: Here’s the official city announcement; added above this paragraph, our full video of today’s announcement, also including the city’s Director of Education and Early Learning, Dwane Chappelle. Regarding applications, note that the city is welcoming applications from families of all 4-year-olds regardless of income level, as well as 3-year-olds whose families’ income qualifies.

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50+ West Seattle businesses sign letter to City Council expressing concern about new ‘head tax’ proposal http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/50-west-seattle-businesses-sign-letter-to-city-council-expressing-concern-about-new-head-tax-proposal/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/50-west-seattle-businesses-sign-letter-to-city-council-expressing-concern-about-new-head-tax-proposal/#comments Thu, 15 Mar 2018 01:12:15 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=911404 On the same day City Councilmembers were scheduled to have their first official discussion about the newest move toward a “head tax” (backstory here), more than 300 businesses around the city – including 50+ from West Seattle (our count of the names we recognized) – have signed a letter expressing concern. Here’s the letter and those who signed it (note that while it is dated March 9th, to our knowledge it is just being circulated today, March 14th):

The letter is similar to one circulated to West Seattle Chamber of Commerce members yesterday, in the name of the city’s Small Business Advisory Council, with an invitation for signatures. The new proposal is from a task force co-chaired by West Seattle’s City Councilmember Lisa Herbold and WS-residing at-large Councilmember Lorena González. It is not yet in the form of proposed legislation – that is expected later in the year. We weren’t able to monitor today’s council committee discussion but hope to link it here when the archived video appears on the Seattle Channel website.

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VIDEO: Mayor @ Chief Sealth IHS for ‘Students Stopping Gun Violence’ town hall http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/happening-now-mayor-chief-sealth-ihs-for-students-stopping-gun-violence-town-hall/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/happening-now-mayor-chief-sealth-ihs-for-students-stopping-gun-violence-town-hall/#comments Fri, 09 Mar 2018 02:44:29 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=910903

(Though the live event is over, it’s archived already, so you can replay it above)

6:44 PM: Click “play” and that should get you into the Seattle Channel live stream of an event that just started in the auditorium at Chief Sealth International High School right now – Mayor Jenny Durkan hosting a town hall on the topic “Students Stopping Gun Violence.” We’ll be chronicling it as it goes, and will substitute archived video when it’s over.

West Seattle/South Park school-board director Leslie Harris opened the town hall – she is president of the board, which passed a gun-violence resolution unanimously last week. (She is also parent of a Chief Sealth IHS graduate, as she noted.) She introduced TV journalist Natalie Brand and radio veteran Ross Reynolds, who are moderating the event. “This violence has to stop,” Harris declared in closing. The moderators note that they are using an interactive platform for this, and you can access it – pigeonhole.at – enter passcode ENDGUNVIOLENCE. Panelists along with Mayor Durkan include a principal, a student, a gun-violence researcher, and a leader from the Duwamish Valley Youth Corps.

(From left, Mayor Durkan, Nyla Fritz, Gregory Pleasant, Dr. Frederick Rivara, Carmen Martinez)

Also introduced as being in the audience are dignitaries including City Councilmember Lisa Herbold, County Councilmember Joe McDermott, SPS superintendent Dr. Larry Nyland. SPD Chief Carmen Best is here too (below with Harris).

First question seeks elaboration on the SPS gun-violence resolution. Harris says it also underscores the importance of services for students. Second, “will Seattle be taking an interest in preventive legislation as well as retroactive legislation?” Durkan says, “We will do what we can and will continue to press Olympia to give us power to protect our communities.” She adds, “I personally believe we need an assault-weapons ban.” And she mentions those killed in shootings that are suicide or accidents, and that she wants to address that too. She asks the student on the panel for his thoughts; gun availability is a key issue, Rainier Beach HS student Gregory Pleasant says.

“If I leave my house every day and I feel like if I don’t have a gun on me, I can’t walk back out that door, that’s going to change the way I live.” The mayor asks about his T-shirt, which reads WHO’S NEXT? That question can apply to positive answers as well as negative, he said.

75 percent of gun deaths in our state are suicides, says the academic, Dr. Frederick Rivara. Proper storage of guns could make a difference. The mayor piggybacks on that by raising the issue of gun theft. She also brings up 16-year-old Dallas Esparza, recently killed in a shooting in South Park. The youth of SP are frightened, says Carmen Martinez of the Duwamish Valley Youth Corps.

Education about the danger of guns is important – people have the right to bear arms, but need to do so responsibly, she says.

6:58 PM: Einstein Middle School principal Nyla Fritz speaks next. She speaks to the youth in the crowd and says she is sorry – sorry that adults have feeling them. Her brother was shot to death at school more than 20 years ago. She also says there are things “all schools can do” to be safer. It’s not all about the security measures or “arming teachers” – “safety and security are two different things; I really worry about some of the language I’m hearing.” Access to guns needs to be looked at, she said.

Next question: Some say “guns don’t kill people, people kill people. How is the mental health component of gun violence being addressed?” Dr. Rivara says that mental illness factors into only a tiny fraction of incidents. The mayor brings up “extreme risk protection orders” that can be used to take guns from those who might be a risk to themselves and/or others. Almost all the referrals so far come from law enforcement, but can come from family members and others, Durkan said. She also lauds community organizations for “disrupting violence” in neighborhoods: “How do we empower those organizations” and youth? She again brings up assault rifles, calling them “weapons of war that have no business being in civilian hands.”

She gets the next question – “what is Seattle doing to help prevent gun violence locally?” She brings up the voting-rights legislation recently passed, telling 16-17-year-olds they will be pre-registered so they can vote when they turn 18, and urging them to stand up – which they do. She says other laws will be looked at, and says money from the city’s ammunition tax will be used for research. She will ask City Councilmembers to dedicate $100,000 every year to learn about victims when they arrive at the hospital – because it often won’t be their first time.

7:10 PM: Next question is from a student who says he was involved in a threat situation and didn’t know how to handle it – “how will we be taught better in the future?” Principal Fritz says it’s important for teachers and parents to send the message that “there is no joke” in these situations – they have to be reported. The student panelist says most people he knows wouldn’t say anything, because they wouldn’t take it seriously. Martinez from South Park says more mentorship is needed. She also says it’s important to be aware that if there’s a shooting, there might be retaliation. She shouts out to an ally in SPD – Lt. Adrian Diaz (who is here, offstage).

The student panelist says a lack of opportunity is a big problem. The mayor agrees, adding that “decades of systemic racism” also factor into violence. The principal says having mental-health professionals present on campus is important too. But “schools can’t do it all – we need our lawmakers, we need our community members to (tell) our lawmakers, we want change.” She says it’s “shameful” that some laws are having to go through the initiative process because lawmakers wouldn’t vote on them. She says the young future voters need to be sure the elected officials are aware they’re watching too.

The mayor says she’s glad that youth are going to march (March 24th) and walk out of their classes (March 14th). She again brings up an assault-weapons ban, saying “our lawmakers need to change the law.”

Next question: What kind of outreach is the city doing to marginalized communities affected by gun violence? Durkan says over the past 4 to 6 years “the city was going the wrong way,” with a “top-down” approach. She names communities, first mentioning White Center – then saying “White Center’s not in our city, yet” (a reference to the long-drawn-out potential-annexation process) – and going on to say “youth respond best if they are supported and led by their communities.” The student panelist says simple things like making sure students don’t go hungry will help.

Next question: “The NRA spends $17 million in schools to teach kids to use guns. Does any school district have plans to teach the true facts of gun violence and the history of the 2nd Amendment?” Fritz says the 2nd Amendment, yes. The rest of it, only by some “courageous educators,” she says. “We’re at a place in our world where we’re telling educators ‘don’t get political,’ but we’re politicizing everything about our kids and the world they’re in.” She urges students to ask questions in their classes.

Dr. Rivara says that people are taught how to handle guns but not that simply having one is a threat to their life; the student panelist agrees.

What policies are effective at reducing gun violence and which policies are making it worse? Universal background checks will make a difference, he says. The extreme-risk protection orders too. Allowing gun purchases at 18 makes it worse, he added.

Next question: “How as students who can’t vote yet can we make change and what can our city government do to support, sponsor, and defend students’ opinions?” Mayor Durkan says, this event is an example. She also urges sustaining the energy, and lauds the students – “You have changed the dialogue … and I am so thankful that you have. … Make sure you hold adults accountable.” Martinez says the city is working to get more resources for youth but those resources have to be taken advantage of when they’re available. “And you have to learn that the hardest thing you’re going to say in your life is ‘no’. … I don’t want to attend another funeral any time soon. I went to Dallas’s and cried my eyes out.”

Question: “Your scholars do not understand how and when to report about their peers. Parents don’t know how SPD handles violent threats. How are you improving this lack of education?” The mayor acknowledges that “red flags” have been ignored in the past. And: The strongest influence on teenagers is their friends/peers. Think about “how do you make it uncool to have a gun” so that instead of it impressing people, it evokes “man, that’s stupid.” Principal Fritz adds that there needs to be more talk about suicide, including survivors of suicide attempts saying they’re glad they survived – but when a gun is involved, there’s a much smaller chance of surviving. Know the warning signs, she urged. (See them here.)

7:45 PM: The student invites the mayor to a Youth For Peace event coming up. And this is now wrapping up, with Reynolds mentioning that the panelists will be around, as will the others mentioned earlier (and there’s a mention that Councilmember Lorena González is here as well as those listed previously).

(West Seattle-residing City Councilmembers Lorena González and Lisa Herbold)

We’ll substitute archived video from the Seattle Channel feed above as soon as it’s available, and will add photos when we get back to HQ.

8:57 PM: Photos added as well as all panelists’ names. The embedded video also now plays back what was streamed via YouTube.

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FOLLOWUP: Governor vetoes public-records bill – by request of legislators who approved it http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/followup-governor-vetoes-public-records-bill-by-request-of-legislators-who-approved-it/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/03/followup-governor-vetoes-public-records-bill-by-request-of-legislators-who-approved-it/#comments Fri, 02 Mar 2018 05:24:23 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=910299 9:24 PM: We and many others reported earlier this week on the uproar over 6617, the public-records-access bill approved overwhelmingly and mega-quickly by state legislators. Gov. Inslee was urged to veto it, despite it being seemingly veto-proof – and he just did, saying that he did so by request of legislators. Among those signing letters requesting the veto, two local reps who voted for the bill.

9:55 PM: The governor’s veto message is here; the House Democrats’ letter (signed by 34th District Reps. Eileen Cody and Joe Fitzgibbon) is here. The heart of it, from the latter letter, is a promise to “start again” with a collaborative “public process” over the next 9 months to “make recommendations to the 2019 Legislature.”

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Governor urged to veto public-records bill that was rushed to approval by legislators including all three from 34th District http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/governor-urged-to-veto-public-records-bill-that-was-rushed-to-approval-by-legislators-including-all-three-from-34th-district/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/governor-urged-to-veto-public-records-bill-that-was-rushed-to-approval-by-legislators-including-all-three-from-34th-district/#comments Wed, 28 Feb 2018 00:13:25 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=910122 By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“Whatever the legitimate reasons for this bill, those reasons will forever be overshadowed by the fact that this was crafted behind closed doors without any benefit of sunshine.”

That’s what the League of Women Voters says in its analysis of SB 6617, the public-records bill that passed the state Legislature at lightning speed a few days ago and is now the subject of a campaign to urge a veto by Governor Inslee.

The latest voices calling for a veto include our area’s King County Councilmember Joe McDermott (a former legislator himself). He and fellow County Councilmember Reagan Dunn sent the governor this letter today:

That puts him on the side opposing the stance of our area’s three current state legislators – Sen. Sharon Nelson (the Maury Island-residing Senate Majority Leader) and West Seattle-residing Reps. Eileen Cody and Joe Fitzgibbon – all of whom voted to approve it.

We asked them all for comment/explanation today, and have received two responses. But before we get to that – if you haven’t heard about this bill, let alone the uproar surrounding it, we refer again to the LWV’s analysis for a summary:

While the headlines focus on the fact that the bill states the legislature is exempt from the official Public Records Act (PRA), the next statement is “the legislature is subject to separate disclosure requirements.” The bill then goes on to establish a number of specific requirements regarding public records that do not currently exist in law. These include the release of calendars, names of those met with and communication with lobbyists. None of this is required under current law, nor has it been part of general practice. What is specifically exempted is personal correspondence with constituents, which often contains very personal Information.

But that’s no excuse for the rush job, the LWV notes. And other outcry includes a particularly loud voice, The Seattle Times, which made this the subject of a first-in-its-history front-page editorial today. Times As editorial-page editor Kate Riley described it, they are opposed to the bill because it “slams the door to government records a judge said the public should have access to.” Riley’s report quotes Times publisher Frank Blethen as saying, “In the 37 years I have served as a publisher in our state, I have never seen as blatant or dangerous an attack on your right to know than the inexplicable attempt of bipartisan legislative leadership in Olympia to essentially keep you from knowing what they are doing.”

Public-records access is the lifeblood of what our business calls “accountability journalism.” Obtaining them isn’t easy, but the fact they are legally supposed to be made available can at the very least be considered something of a check on power. And in this time when there are fewer people in the journalism business, due to a long list of factors, many are disturbed by anything constraining the ability to get public records.

Now, to what our legislators have to say. We sent requests for comment to all three this morning. We have not heard back from Sen. Nelson or her staff. Reps. Cody and Fitzgibbon have both sent lengthy responses, and we are publishing both in their entirety, after the jump, along with contact info – his response first, because we received it first:

I have heard from many constituents unhappy with my vote on Senate Bill 6617, the Legislative Public Records Act. Among the concerns I have heard include: frustration with the process by which this bill passed, opposition to the exemption in the bill for disclosure of constituent emails, and accusations that the Legislature is taking a step backwards on transparency. While I am also frustrated with the speedy process, I stand by my vote, which will result in the largest expansion of disclosable public records in the 46 years since the Public Records Act passed. For the first time, legislators’ calendars, legislators’ correspondence with lobbyists, and final dispositions of disciplinary proceedings against legislators will be available to the public. I believe the balance that this bill strikes between transparency and privacy is a fair solution that will serve the public interest. I apologize for the long response but it is necessary given the importance of this issue.

In January, a Thurston County Superior Court judge ruled that, for the first time in 46 years, individual legislators are subject to the Public Records Act. The Legislature has held for many years, as have Democratic and Republican attorneys general, that a distinct, narrow definition of public records applies to the House of Representatives and the Senate. The judge did not overturn this law – however, he did rule that individual legislators constitute our own state agencies and are not subject to the narrow definition that governs the institutions of which we are members. This ruling would create absurd and unworkable results that would waste taxpayer dollars. All 147 members of the Legislature would be required to have copying facilities available; to double (from one to two) our number of staff, with one of our two staff members entirely assigned to responding to public records requests. Thousands of constituent emails that were sent to us, without the expectation that they would be shared with the public, would immediately become public. The vast majority of the Legislature agreed that this result would not serve our constituents, the taxpayers.

As are many of you, I am unhappy with the speedy process by which this bill passed through the Legislature. It would have been better to move the bill through House and Senate committees so there would have been more opportunity for public input. While the House and Senate State Government Committees held a joint work session on the bill on Thursday of last week and heard public testimony, it would have been better to take an extra day for each chamber’s state government committee to separately hear input from the public on the bill. A fast process was necessitated by the fact that the ruling came down in the middle of an extremely busy legislative session, the Legislature’s request that the Supreme Court issue a stay on its ruling had not yet been acted on, and if the ruling went into effect, it would have necessitated changes described above that would have effectively stopped the Legislature from all other work for the remainder of session. I would have strongly preferred that the bill move through legislative committees for hearings and votes in the normal process. But I am not in the habit of voting against policies I agree with just because the process was flawed.

Many people have written to say that all correspondence should be subject to disclosure, as it is with local governments. I sympathize with local officials who have longstanding frustrations with the Public Records Act and the way it can be used to intimidate and retaliate against officials, elected and otherwise, when they make difficult choices. But I do not believe that constituents writing their elected officials have the expectation that everything they write to us will be available for anyone else to review. Often, our office receives correspondence about sensitive personal issues – for example, related to immigration status, domestic violence, sexual abuse, and medical issues. Even with redacting names and identifying details, making these constituents’ correspondence public would create a chilling effect for people who might otherwise look to their legislators’ offices for help.

However I do believe that legislators’ calendars and legislators’ correspondence with lobbyists should be disclosed. And under this law, they will – for the first time ever. I am happy to share my calendar at any time if you are interested in knowing how I spend my days. If you believe that the law as interpreted by Thurston Superior Court in January is the law as it stands, then 6617 is a step towards protecting privacy of constituents over transparency. If you believe that the status quo is the Public Records Act as it has been consistently interpreted by the Legislature for 46 years, this law is a huge step towards greater transparency.

I deeply regret the way that this legislation has been characterized in the press. I am concerned that very few of the news articles I have read covering this bill have acknowledged how many new records will be disclosable under this bill. But with that said, I know that many of you will read my explanation above and still be opposed to my vote. I understand and accept that you may be disappointed anyway, and in that case I will respectfully disagree. But I appreciate you taking the time to understand this legislation and why all three of your legislators agreed that it was the right thing to do, even knowing the likely consequence of outrage in the news media and with many of you.

Again, that was the response from 34th District Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon.

Next, the response from the 34th District’s other state Rep., Eileen Cody. First, she told WSB, “I know that there is a lot of concern being raised about the legislature trying to keep our work secret. I also know that the press believes that everything we say or do should be public but I believe that constituent correspondence should be exempt from disclosure. As chair of the health care committee I get regular correspondence from people across the state that are requesting help either dealing with the state, a hospital, or an insurer. I do not believe that their health care information should be open to public scrutiny. That being said I do regret that the legislature did not take the time to have regular hearings. I agree that the public perception is bad but it is too late to change that.” This is what she has been sending to constituents:

Thank you for reaching out. If Judge Lanese’s opinion stood, each legislator would have to appoint their own public records officer; adopt rules for public disclosure through the Washington Administrative Code; and be available at least 30 hours a week year-round for public inspection of records. So, we did exactly what Attorney General Ferguson said we should do and passed this bill to expand and clarify how legislative records should be treated. HB 6617, will create a new public records department at the legislature specifically to respond to public records request in a timely and efficient manner.

The version of the bill that passed both the House and Senate codifies and expands our current public disclosure rules, more legislative records will be subject to public disclosure, including:

Legislators’ calendars, including the names and dates of individuals and organizations with whom they’ve met

Emails and text messages with lobbyists or any other person paid to influence legislation.

Final dispositions of investigations and disciplinary proceedings by administrative committees that oversee the House and Senate.

The bill does continues to protect certain categories of documents, such as constituent correspondence. These exceptions are balanced and appropriate. As chair of the House Health Care Committee, I receive emails from not only my own constituents but from people across the state. Many relate sensitive health care problems that they have experienced in dealing with hospitals and health insurance companies. Many people share personal information and seek my help in resolving their problems. These range from government benefit issues to sensitive health information to challenging family situations.

Beyond this, I don’t want mail constituents send to me to ever be hindered by privacy concerns. If constituents knew that their correspondence could wind up on the front page of the Seattle Times, it could have a chilling effect on the First Amendment right to petition the government for redress of grievances.

In the past few years, I haven’t received a SINGLE public records request from a constituent. Only from the press. If the press want to know which lobbyists I’m talking to, this bill ensures they have that access. They never had that before. If my constituents also want to have their information disclosed to the media or anyone else who asks for their personal information, they can ask me to amend this bill in the future and I’ll work on it.

I won’t defend the process this bill went through. It was rushed, it wasn’t transparent, and it wasn’t accountable to the public. I’ve made my feelings about that clear to my colleagues, as have many others. We have to do better in the future.

I support openness and transparency. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit against the Legislature, the news outlets, say this isn’t transparent. I disagree and think their motivations are what is not transparent. We are in a lawsuit because they want every record. We want to protect our constituents. There MUST be a middle ground where we can meet.

This bill is an attempt to reconcile concerns about openness of government with the need to retain privacy for our constituents and the open flow of ideas between members throughout the legislative process. If you have further questions about what will be subject to public record requests, I suggest you look at the most recent bill report http://lawfiles/biennium/2017-18/Pdf/Bill%20Reports/House/6617.E%20HBR%20APH%2018.pdf.

That last URL doesn’t work – we’re guessing it’s internal – bill reports for this particular legislation are linked here, and it appears this is the public form of the same URL with which Rep. Cody’s message ended. (Again, we have yet to hear back from our area’s state senator, Senate Majority Leader Sharon Nelson; if and when we do, we’ll add her response here.)

If you want to share your thoughts with your legislators on this bill (or anything else), click each name for the page with full contact info:

Sen. Sharon Nelson
Rep. Eileen Cody
Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon

Contact info for Gov. Inslee is here.

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PHOTOS: Mayor’s West Seattle visit, report #2 – touring The Junction http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/photos-mayors-west-seattle-visit-report-2-touring-the-junction/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/photos-mayors-west-seattle-visit-report-2-touring-the-junction/#comments Mon, 26 Feb 2018 05:40:54 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909934

Story by Tracy Record
Photos by Patrick Sand
West Seattle Blog co-publishers

Mayor Jenny Durkan has promised to listen to small businesses, taking early action to set up a Small Business Advisory Council that just had its first meeting.

On a smaller scale, she has been visiting community business districts, including an hourlong walking tour in the heart of the West Seattle Junction on Saturday before her town-hall event at the Senior Center.

We’ve already published our “town hall” coverage, but we were also along for the walking tour – here’s what we saw and heard:

Lora Swift (above right), executive director of the West Seattle Junction Association, met with mayoral staffers in advance to plan the tour, which started at West Seattle Performing Arts (4210 SW Edmunds). A kids’ dance class was under way when the mayor and her entourage arrived; she had a bouquet of flowers and high-fives before she left.

This was after she posed with students and parents for a “smile and say West Seattle!” photo op.

Next scheduled stop was ArtsWest Playhouse and Gallery (4711 California SW), after an unscheduled stop at Bakery Nouveau, during which the mayor bought six macarons for one of her sons. It was going on noon, so while there was the usual BN line, it wasn’t too long.

At ArtsWest, she was greeted by managing director Laura Lee and artistic director Mathew Wright.

ArtsWest is getting ready to present “Hir,” a co-production with Intiman Theatre, opening this week; the tour group also got a peek inside the theater, where rehearsal was under way.

The mayor had lots of questions including how ArtsWest chooses its productions; they spoke of sparking conversation, and pushing boundaries, as well as the challenges of running a viable arts business – they’re 65 percent grant-funded, they told the mayor. Durkan in turn was heard to voiced concern about displacement affecting arts businesses.

Being an art-focused retailer was the topic at the next stop, Virago Gallery (4306 SW Alaska).

Employee Kim, who was working behind the counter, showed the mayor her work – described as “tiny weapons” that she makes on-site, and introduced her to an apprentice who was there shadowing her. She also spoke about Virago’s upcoming move around the corner to California SW, and the safety/security challenges they’ve faced at their current location, with a bus stop right outside the door. Swift explained to the mayor and staff the issues that resulted in the removal of bus-shelter structures across the street a year-plus ago.

Next stop: Menashe and Sons Jewelers (4532 California SW; WSB sponsor), where the mayor talked with proprietor Jack Menashe as well as Husky Deli‘s Jack Miller.

The conversation there wasn’t just business – the mayor also heard all about the Menashes’ famous Christmas lights on Beach Drive.

At the final stop, Antique Mall of West Seattle (4516 California SW), crime/safety returned as a topic.

Along with a quick walkthrough to get a look at the eclectic variety of merchandise, the mayor heard about last month’s break-in (reported in WSB Crime Watch).

After that, it was a short walk around the corner for an early arrival at the Senior Center, where staffers from various city departments were getting ready for the town hall – like West Seattleite Irene Stewart from Age-Friendly Seattle:

And Durkan stopped for a few more chats with community leaders including Tamsen Spengler, new co-chair of the Southwest District Council:

West Seattle has two neighborhood-district councils – Delridge Neighborhoods as well as Southwest – whose participants have been watching closely to see what kind of relationship they’ll have with the Durkan administration, considering that her predecessor had gone to great lengths to cut official city ties with the groups, even signing an executive order and forming a new city commission that at one point was billed as a replacement for them, though it has turned out to have a different mission.

P.S. We covered her subsequent town hall speech/Q&A separately, with video, here.

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VIDEO: Mayor Jenny Durkan visits West Seattle, report #1 http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/video-mayor-jenny-durkan-visits-west-seattle-report-1/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/video-mayor-jenny-durkan-visits-west-seattle-report-1/#comments Sat, 24 Feb 2018 22:09:24 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909877

(Added 4:52 pm, full video)

Just wrapping up at the Senior Center of West Seattle, Mayor Jenny Durkan‘s first “town hall” event – part speech, part Q&A, part resource fair with multiple city departments tabling. She took half a dozen questions, but heard even more about local concerns during a pre-event walking tour of Junction businesses:

That photo is from Virago Gallery (on Alaska west of California but moving soon) – we’ll have a separate full report on the walking tour later. We’ll also have full video from the Senior Center event, at which center director Lyle Evans introduced Durkan as the “first woman mayor elected in Seattle in more than 100 years.” He also lauded her for choosing this location and shining a light on the “Silver Tsunami.” (Later she joked that she had a solution for what she re-termed the “gray tsunami” – “Don’t go gray.”)

The mayor sounded the themes of her State of the City address – including her concern that the city is in danger of losing its soul if issues such as affordability are not addressed. She also touted the Seattle Promise program for two free years of community college for all graduates of Seattle Public Schools, and the ORCA cards that will be provided to all public-school students.

She brought up the “shock” delivered with the new property-tax bills, acknowledging that too is adding to the affordability crisis, and that landlords will be passing the increases on to renters.

Problems won’t be solved overnight, she warned, and she knows people will be frustrated.

Transportation – “you can’t come to West Seattle without talking about transportation,” she acknowledged. She mentioned Sound Transit 3 and light rail, and hopes of speeding it up. She then mentioned the impending d “Traffic in West Seattle is going to get much, much worse in the next three years and it’s not the mayor’s fault – you look at what’s coming online – the viaduct’s being torn down, 1st Avenue’s being torn up for the streetcar, the Convention Center (is resulting in) buses coming out of the (transit) tunnel and onto the street … we’re going to have to look at innovative solutions to get past this time.” That will include transit. “We’ll work with Metro,” she promised. “We’ve got to get people out of single-occupancy vehicles out of this time … we have more cars than we have room on the streets.” But as she had done in her State of the City Address, she declared that Seattle is “the best city anywhere” – in no small part because of the “eclectic nature of the individual neighborhoods … Every one of our communities has its own feel, and that’s what we’ve got to preserve.”

Yes, the demolition of the viaduct will lead to what she sees as temporary traffic trouble, but she envisions a “collective gasp” when people see the viaduct-less waterfront.

She acknowledges concerns about HALA – “we’re not going to undo HALA and upzoning because we have to have growth and density … but I (also) don’t believe ‘one size fits all’ … so we’re going to listen to you … (and will) have a process that’s meaningful.” She says that in some places she asks people who wishes growth would just stop – a lot of hands go up – and then she asks how many people were born here, and most hands go down. (Note – she did not ask that here.)

Then to Q&A. First person to speak is from Highland Park Action Committee co-chair Gunner Scott. He mentions that they have been asking for transportation infrastructure improvements “for 70 years – 70 years.” There is a plan for density, but no plan for improving that infrastructure. He also mentions that Highland Park is hosting a third encampment. And he invites her to visit Highland Park. She accepts the invitation, also says SDOT can look at the improvements (editor’s note, which they have), and says that Camp Second Chance – the third encampment Scott mentioned – seems to be successful and that encampments are needed because there’s no place for

Next question: How will the Seattle Promise college plan be funded? There’s no more room for added property taxes, the questioner asks, because “we’ll break.” Durkan says that she is aware of the tax burden, but “if we don’t do right by our kids … we will have to spend more time on them in other systems.” She says many people who are frequently booked into jail “are discharged into homelessness.” She says that “full buildout” of the college program would be about $7 million a year – “not only can we afford to do it – we’ll look at some of it in the family levy” and other unspecified places. “I know we’ve got to make choices.” And she says she’s asked all her department directors to provide budgets with potential cuts.

Next question: David Toledo brings up a work-readiness/arts program that started in 2011 that was initiated by Mayor Mike McGinn and cut by Mayor Ed Murray. Durkan says it’s “critical to have kids exposed to the arts” and promises “additional programs like that.” She mentions her pre-Town Hall walk and the apprentice who she met at Virago Gallery. She says arts are vital to “the soul of the city.”

Next question: Diane Vincent, identifying herself as a lifelong renter whose Social Security barely covers half of her rent, and she’s been on a waitlist for a senior apartment for three years. The mayor’s Office of Senior Citizens is being shut down, she says, but she needs retraining because she has to work “to survive.” Her Social Security went up $12 – her rent went up $200. The city isn’t offering help for senior jobs, she said.

The mayor’s reply included a mention that she is asking the state for tax breaks for landlords in affordable rentals – so that tax increases don’t automatically mean rent increases. Vincent follows up about jobs. Durkan mentions job losses imminent because of automation and uses “self-driving vehicles” as an example.

Next: What about free college for adults to help with retraining? Durkan reiterates the success of the Seattle Promise’s predecessor program, 1 free year at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) for graduates of certain high schools’ graduates, and says she hopes it might eventually be more than that.

Final question is from someone who identifies herself as a “second-generation landlord” who also says she was on one of the HALA focus groups and she is happy about the upcoming upzoning, but she also wants to see permitting sped up. She also wants to see more mental-health and addiction services, saying her brother was homeless because he needed help “and it took us two years to get him help … (the system is) broken. Addiction and mental health go hand in hand. .. We wait for people to (seek help) but if someone is (unwell) they are not going to come to a rational decision.”

Durkan says everyone in the room likely has been touched by the problem. Overall, she says, she is a “data-driven person” but knowing the numbers doesn’t assist in solving the problem. “There is not a one-size-fits-all solution for homelessness. … They all need the same solution, a home, but how you get them there … is different.” She then notes the city/county/regional group that’s convening to “work and coordinate better” to try to find solutions. “It’s a longer-term (solution) … it took a long time to get where we are.” She does get to one solution for some – methadone for heroin addiction, but Seattle has one provider, she says, and they are maxed out at 1,400 people. She says she’s in favor of increasing services but “we’re going to have to do it together” and urges the community member to continue advocating.

“Seattle’s only Seattle if people like you show up not only in these rooms but (in their personal lives) and not only demand a better city, but work for a better city.” She promises to “listen … and we’ll do what we can.” And she wraps at 1:45 pm. The resource fair continued on for another 20-plus minutes.

Full video and more photos to come!

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FOLLOWUP: More details about Mayor Jenny Durkan’s West Seattle visit Saturday http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/followup-more-details-about-mayor-jenny-durkans-west-seattle-visit-saturday/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/followup-more-details-about-mayor-jenny-durkans-west-seattle-visit-saturday/#comments Thu, 22 Feb 2018 20:21:53 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909702 We first told you back on Tuesday that Mayor Jenny Durkan is coming to West Seattle for a public event on Saturday. We’ve obtained a few more details about the event via the mayor’s office and local community organizations:

-The mayor will be joined by representatives of city departments including SDOT, Seattle Public Utilities, Department of Neighborhoods, the Office of Economic Development, Parks, Office of Housing, Seattle Housing Authority, Office of Planning and Community Development, Seattle Police, and Seattle Fire “with information about city-wide programs, and projects specific to West Seattle”

-The mayor plans to “discuss her vision for building a more affordable, inclusive Seattle” as described in her State of the City speech on Tuesday

She’s also expected to visit several local businesses before the public event, which is scheduled for 1 pm to 2 pm Saturday at the Senior Center of West Seattle (4217 SW Oregon).

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Mayor Jenny Durkan coming to West Seattle for ‘town hall’ on Saturday http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/mayor-jenny-durkan-coming-to-west-seattle-for-town-hall-on-saturday/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/mayor-jenny-durkan-coming-to-west-seattle-for-town-hall-on-saturday/#comments Wed, 21 Feb 2018 01:16:05 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909565 (Seattle Channel image from mayor’s State of the City today)

The idea of having Mayor Jenny Durkan come to West Seattle for a “town hall” has been mentioned frequently at community meetings since she took office. Now, there’s a date, just confirmed by the mayor’s office: Next Saturday, February 24th, Senior Center of West Seattle (4217 SW Oregon), 1 pm. (We’re following up to find out more about the format.) That’ll be four days after her first State of the City address (WSB coverage here).

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VIDEO: Mayor Jenny Durkan’s first State of the City address http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/happening-now-mayor-jenny-durkans-first-state-of-the-city-address/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/happening-now-mayor-jenny-durkans-first-state-of-the-city-address/#comments Tue, 20 Feb 2018 19:08:55 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909499

(Substituted 5:40 pm: Seattle Channel video of the State of the City speech and introductions)

11:08 AM: Click the “play” button and you’ll open the live Seattle Channel stream of Mayor Jenny Durkan‘s first “State of the City” address, which she is presenting at Rainier Beach High School. We’re watching too, and adding notes of interest below.

First, she’s being introduced by City Council President Bruce Harrell and RBHS student-body president Nyshae Petty. Harrell mentioned others in attendance including West Seattle/South Park’s City Councilmember Lisa Herbold and School Board rep (and board president) Leslie Harris.

11:16 AM: Durkan is now speaking, after Diana Bautista talked about her studies at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) in the 13th Year Promise scholarship, which Durkan plans to expand into a two-year program at more colleges, serving more high-school graduates.

She says this is an “unprecedented and for many painful period of growth,” but that Seattle is “the best damn city anywhere.” She says her nickname at City Hall is “the impatient mayor,” and says the crisis of affordability and homelessness threatens “the soul of our city” and is “the central challenge we face … the moral issue of our times.” She also promises that the city will “stand up” for its values in the face of “attacks from the other Washington,” before getting back to the homelessness/affordability crisis: “People experiencing homelessness are us – moms and dads, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters.” She says the crisis has been “years in the making and will not be fixed overnight.”

Adding affordable housing requires “speeding up permitting” and increasing density, Durkan says, and more units such as backyard cottages. And she reiterates that it’s a regional crisis, not just a city issue, which is why she’s working with King County Executive Dow Constantine (another West Seattle-residing elected official mentioned as being in the audience). It’s also not just a government issue – “it’s going to take businesses, philanthropists, neighborhoods, people of faith, community organizations … every one of us.” It’s not just about creating housing but about creating “true .. equitable economic opportunity.”

11:33 AM: She’s now talking about a new plan – free year-round ORCA transit passes for all Seattle Public Schools high-school students “by this fall,” and for Seattle Promise college attendees too. She will work with the City Council to do this. And then she is back to the Seattle Promise plan (announced at SCC on her second day in office) for “two free years of college education and support” so that more young adults get the educational background that’s required for so many of the jobs that would otherwise be unattainable.

11:43 AM: She has moved on to talking about the other city-funded educational efforts – the Families and Education Levy and the levy-funded Seattle Preschool Program, which are to be combined when they next go to voters, saying college readiness goes back to the early years. And she calls for new protections for domestic workers.

She then touches on other city services – power, trash, utilities, “the fire and police services that keep everyone safe,” street services (telling the story of one of ~50 SDOT workers who worked on Christmas Eve “to make the streets safe and passable). She lauds city workers, but also warns that a budget deficit “is on the horizon.”

Now, traffic, which she says “is going to get worse before it gets better.” But she says it’s good news that “more people are using transit and fewer people are driving alone in their cars, and we need to keep that trend going.”

And then crime – “we have to acknowledge that parts of our city do not feel safe,” declaring that people must be safe in their homes and on the streets and in schools. “Schools are meant for joy and learning … not for lockdowns and mass shootings.” She promises to fight for “common-sense gun-safety laws” (without specifying what those might be). And she says that she wants citizens’ help in choosing the next police chief, starting with a survey you can take online [added – here it is].

11:58 AM: About the environment, she takes another dig at the White House by saying that “we believe in science” here, and then she says environmental justice is vital, and that the burdens of environmental problems so often fall on underserved communities: “South Park, Georgetown, South Seattle – I have heard you!” she declares.

And she goes on to speak of a rosy future, saying that Seattle is where the future has been invented – aviation, tech, medicine, and more.

Looking to the near future: “And next year, in 2019, the Alaskan Way Viaduct will finally come down, and it will be amazing … it will open the door for a waterfront for all … 20 acres of new parks and public spaces … it will reconnect Elliott Bay and its maritime heritage” to the rest of the city.

In closing: “I love Seattle to my bones … and I know we will do the right thing and build a more affordable, inclusive future … Will it be easy? No. It will take grit … Let’s resolve together that next year we can look each other in the eye and say the state of our city is more just … even stronger … that life for all who call Seattle home is better, because of our resolve, our actions, and our love.”

12:05 PM: The speech is over. We’ll substitute archived video for the live window atop this story as soon as we can, and will attach a link to the full text when it’s available.

2:29 PM: The mayor’s office just sent what it says is a transcription. Not on the city website yet so we have cut and pasted it after the jump (the spacing is as sent):

Thank you so much. Thank you for that great introduction.

Council President Harrell, Members of the City Council, fellow elected officials, veterans, community leaders, members of the clergy, and my family and friends, and thank you, Executive Constantine, for being here.

Rainier Beach High school students and staff.

Good morning! Good morning! There we go!

As I begin my remarks, I would like to recognize that the City of Seattle is named after a great Chief – Chief Sealth of the Duwamish and Suquamish tribes.

We should always remember that all of Seattle resides in the Coast Salish Territories.

To everyone gathered here, and to all those watching, and to the 700,000 people who call Seattle home:

It is an honor to be with you to deliver the first State of the City address of my term as mayor.

And don’t worry: I’m not going to do five of them all over the City like I did when I was sworn in!

I am so excited to be here at Rainier Beach, where everybody is somebody.

I want to thank Principal Keith Smith, all the Seattle Public Schools officials who are here and so committed to the kids, and to the students who are hosting us here at Rainier Beach.

President Harrell, I know even though this is your district, it’s hard for a Garfield Bulldog to be here. But you always put our City first!

We are here at Rainier Beach because the students here are at the forefront of change:

From advocating for social justice, to the 13th Year Promise Scholarship program, to free ORCA passes, Rainier Beach is the place where people come together to get things done.

By now, you know I am the first woman Mayor elected in Seattle in almost 100 years.

But our last woman, Bertha Landes, when she led Seattle, the Mayor didn’t give a State of the City address.

I know a lot of you wish that you were living then!

So today, we are making history together:

This is the first time that a woman mayor has delivered Seattle’s State of the City Address.

So to all the young women here today and any of you who might be watching:

I want you to know you are strong, you are smart, you deserve every chance to chase your dreams, whatever those dreams may be.

To launch the next great Seattle startup.

To play for the Seattle Storm.

Maybe to grow up to be Mayor of Seattle.

Or the President of the United States.

Today, we come together to celebrate our City’s strengths but also to be honest about our challenges.

We are in an unprecedented – and for many, painful — period of change and growth.

But we are strong, resilient, determined, innovative, generous and – frankly – the best damn city anywhere. (Sorry about that, teachers.)

And like so many people, I don’t think we can act fast enough on housing, homelessness, transportation, racial equity and social justice – everything we need to be a better future.

You may have heard I’ve already earned a nickname in City Hall:

“The impatient mayor.”

Seriously, it’s what they call me!

It’s because I’m pushing us to take on the challenges we face:

First, we must address the crisis of affordability, the growing economic disparities, and homelessness.

This is a crisis that threatens the soul of our city.

A crisis that is bigger than us, and demands a regional response.

Second, as Seattle grows so quickly, we must deliver essential City services better and smarter.

Third, we will build safer communities and advance the cause of racial equity and social justice.

And together we will stand up for our progressive values in the face of attacks from the other Washington.

And finally, we must do what Seattle does best:

Seize the awesome opportunities we have to build a better and more vibrant City for the next generation.

Our first priority, though, must be to build a more affordable Seattle.

As a City and as a region, the crisis of affordability and the growing economic disparity, and homelessness is the central challenge we face. It’s the moral challenge of our time.

We have a booming economy, thriving businesses and some of the highest wage, coolest jobs anywhere.

We are fueling the innovation economy.

Yet for too many of us – our families, our neighbors, artists and small businesses – too many are being forced out of the City that they love.

And sadly, look anywhere in our City, and you will see our neighbors living without a home.

Thousands are living in transitional housing and shelters. Thousands more are living outside on our streets.

And every three days, someone without a home dies in this City.

Every three days.

People experiencing homelessness are us: Moms and dads. Brothers and sisters. Sons and daughters.

I have focused on this crisis since my first days in office and I will continue to focus on it for the rest of my term.

Now, I wish I could stand up here and tell you we’re on the brink of solving our affordability and homelessness crisis.

But I have to be honest with you:

These crises has been years in the making, and will not be fixed overnight.

While we must take urgent action to improve our City, lasting progress will take years.

There will be times when we take two steps forward and then one step back.

I know there will be times when you are frustrated with City Hall – and with me.

Believe me:

I get frustrated, too.

But no matter how daunting our challenges, what I can promise you is that as Mayor I will push three things to meet this challenge:

Number one: We have to build more low-income and middle-class housing as quickly as we can.

Two: We have to quickly provide more short term options that are safe, humane and that actually move people to long term housing.

Three: We must create true economic opportunity for everyone.

We cannot build a City for the future if it starts with the presumption that so many people have to stay poor.

In my first two and a half months, we’ve already started moving ahead on these three steps:

First, we have acted to create more affordable housing.

In December, we announced the largest single investment ever in affordable housing: $100 million.

While there will be hundreds of new affordable housing units coming online in 2018, in four years, I want to say we built thousands, in every part of the city, at every economic level.

We need to speed up permitting, add density, and expand our housing options in every part of this City.

Like more mother-in-laws and backyard cottages.

Second, in addition to building more affordable housing, we must have more short term shelter that is both accountable and safe.

While there’s no quick fixes, we can make progress.

Over the last five years, our City’s annual direct investments in programs to fight homelessness have grown from nearly $40 million to nearly $70 million.

This year, the City of Seattle is requiring more accountability of our homeless service providers.

We will move twice as many people into permanent housing as we did last year.

To help move more quickly, I proposed legislation establishing “Building a Bridge to Housing for All.”

This plan urgently does two things:

First, it seeks to prevent homelessness by starting a two-year pilot to provide rental assistance to those people who need help the most because they’re on the brink of becoming homeless.

Second, it will invest millions in shorter-term, safer shelter that is more humane.

Our shelters and sanctioned encampments are almost full.

While we build more long-term housing, we need this funding to help people.

Council, let’s get this passed immediately so we can help our neighbors living on the edge and get more people off our streets.

More of our neighbors need hope.

I have seen this first-hand what hope can do – if we empower people and people that work and care about our communities.

I saw this kind of hope in the eyes of mothers and children at Mary’s Place when I first became Mayor.

And when I met Bobby, who had been living unsheltered, but is now living in a block project home in lower Beacon Hill, in the backyard of Kim Sherman and Dan Tenenbaum.

Good things happen when Seattle comes together to commit to hope and love.

And because our community’s challenges do not stop at the City limits, we must act as a region.

That’s why I’m working with King County Executive Dow Constantine – thank you, Mr. Executive, for all your work – and Nancy Backus, our mayor from Auburn, and community members from across the region. We created One Table.

And the goal: Truly coordinated, regional solutions to address the root causes of homelessness.

Because Seattle going it alone will not work.

The problem is bigger than us, and we must have regional solutions and regional resources.

That’s how we’re going to be able to invest more for addiction and mental health treatment.

And in alternatives to incarceration.

And for our youth experiencing homelessness.

But solving our affordability and homelessness crisis will require more than just governments working together.

It’s going to take business, philanthropists, neighborhoods, people of faith, and community organizations.

It will take the continued work of the service providers and the health care workers.

It’ll take every one of us stepping up and working together.

So many already are.

I want to thank the hundreds of people work long days for little pay at non-profit organizations that serve our neighbors experiencing homelessness.

And some Seattleites do all they can – like Dale Hoff, a general contractor who lives in North Seattle and is building tiny homes in his garage.

Or like a Seattle native, John, who sent me a note the first week I was mayor saying he wanted to help – and he enclosed a check for $25.

We can only do this if we do it together. Let’s do it together.

The first two steps to tackling affordability:

Building more long term affordable housing and safer short-term alternatives.

But the key to creating long-term solutions to affordability and homelessness is to create true equitable economic opportunity.

Our City’s future is the young people with us today and across the City.

These are our future doctors and scientists.

Our iron workers and electricians.

Our small business owners and entrepreneurs.

Maybe the next Bill Gates or the next Barack Obama.

Right here, right now in Seattle.

If young people do their part, they have to know we will do our part.

We have to deliver on the promise of opportunity.

This is going to require taking some bold and big steps.

Of course, it is hard to do well in school or at a job, if you can’t even get there.

Right now, too many students in Rainier Beach and on Lake City Way and in other parts of our City, getting to school means an unsafe trip or a long walk in the cold and rain.

That’s wrong.

Here’s what’s right:

That every student in Seattle has access to affordable, reliable transportation.

Now, Councilmembers Rob Johnson and Mike O’Brien and others have worked to give free ORCA passes to young people for many years.

And last summer, King County Executive Dow Constantine launched a successful 50 cent youth fare project throughout the County. Let’s make it better.

By this fall, we will put a free, year-round ORCA pass in the hands of every one of our 15,000 Seattle Public high school students.

And don’t worry, Promise scholars: we’re going to do the same for you.

We’re doing this so students can worry more about their grades and less about how they get places.

So that working moms and dads can save a little money each month and know their children are safe.

I look forward to working with the City Council to make this a reality for our students for years to come.

It’s the right thing to do. The time is now. We are going to make it happen.

We also have to double down on job creation in those parts of our City that have been most left behind – particularly in our communities of color.

You know, our economy is changing more quickly than we can adjust to it.

Many jobs of today will disappear and many jobs of tomorrow have not even been invented yet.

But they’re going to be here in a blink of an eye.

In the next five years, Washington state alone is set to create 740,000 job openings – 740,000 job openings – most of them will require a post-high school education.

But today, almost 70% of Washington high school students don’t get post-secondary credentials by the age of 26.

That is wrong.

We need to help Seattle high school graduates get those jobs.

We must harness the brilliance in our schools to shape the new economy.

We can do this. I know we can.

This starts with my Seattle Promise College Tuition program.

We need to make college a reality for every Seattle Public School graduate by investing in two free years of college education and support.

This builds on the success of the 13th Year Scholarship program, expands it, and reimagines it.

So if you’re a 13th Year Scholar and you’re here this morning, could you please stand?

Seattle, this is our progressive values made real.

Thank you, Scholars.

And Promise Scholars: I’m thrilled to tell you the City can commit to a 14th year for you.

The Seattle Promise program will help and economically empower our next generation.

It will open doors.

Many will be the first in their family to go to college.

Barriers to college often span generations, and for too long have held back communities of colors, immigrants, and refugees.

Seattle Promise will change the lives of our young people, and those young people will change our city.

You already heard how it changed the life of Diana Batista, who introduced me.

And it has changed the lives of people like Musa Abdi and Abdiasis Ibrahim.

Both Musa and Abdiasis grew up in refugee camps in Kenya.

They were lucky to move with their families to Seattle.

The transition is never easy.

Both worked hard and ended up enrolling at South Seattle College as 13th Year Scholars.

That’s right. And that year of free college helped change the arc of their already incredible lives.

Today, Musa is enrolled in UW’s Public Health Program.

And Abdiasis is studying Bioengineering at UW.

Musa’s headed east of the mountains to WSU, where he has been accepted into the pharmacy program.

And Abdiasis? He plans to apply to medical school next year.

Now Musa couldn’t be here today – he’s got a big chemistry exam!

But Abdiasis is here, back at his alma mater, Rainier Beach.

Can you stand up just for a minute? You’re an amazing young man.

This is what we can do for our young people. This shows just two people who can show the power of what free college can do – for them, for their families, and for our cities.

[Audience member: Yes we can!]

That’s right: yes we can.

And that’s why I am committed to expanding what already works for the 13th year. We are on the path to two years of free college and support for every Seattle Public Schools student.

And college is just part of it.

We have to create real career paths for our City’s young people including more registered apprenticeships, internships, and good summer jobs.

Just last week, I joined with the County and the Port of Seattle to announce more investments in workforce training.

But we won’t stop. Our kids have to have a shot at any job in this town they want to have.

They can build the buildings, work in the buildings, or own the buildings.

Another key, obviously, to opening doors to opportunity is our Families and Education Levy.

And I’m so happy to have so many of the committed School Board here, and the Superintendent.

In the coming months, we in the City will have a lot of conversations about it.

During those conversations, I want you to know what are my three core priorities:

1. Preserving pre-k and early learning. Kids have to come to kindergarten ready to learn.

2. We must try new approaches to close the opportunity gap for students of color. We have one of the worst in the nation and what we’re doing is not working quickly enough.

3. We’ve got to make sure every kid in Seattle Public Schools has the opportunity to go to college free. Because just like real education doesn’t start at age 5 – it doesn’t end in high school.

If we focus on these three things with our levy, we will be creating real economic opportunity for the next generation.

Economic opportunity and fairness also means we will keep protecting our workers through fair wages and fair rights.

Seattle led the way on the $15 minimum wage.

Now, it’s time to lead the way on a Domestic Worker Bill of Rights.

This year, I intend to work with Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda, employers, labor, and others to make this a reality.

The time for talk is over. It’s time to get it done.

These are the steps I will take to combat the challenge of affordability and build economic opportunity for us.

And every day, I will live up to my nickname, the “Impatient Mayor.”

So let’s talk about the second priority: the need to deliver basic City services.

Just as our growth has made it hard for the middle class, it has made it hard for our City workers to deliver their basic services.

We have to work harder and we have to work quicker. After all, you pay our bills.

And to our City employees, I know we need to give you a safe place to work, free of discrimination and harassment.

We have a lot of important work to do together.

To deliver clean and reliable electricity.

To make sure the garbage, compost, and recycling gets picked up.

To fill the potholes. (Applause.)

Okay, we know the priority within the priority….

To deliver fire and police services that keep everyone safe.

In a growing city like ours, none of that is easy.

But here’s the good news:

There are 11,000 public servants trying to make our City a better place to live.

These are people like Seang Ngy, who works at our City’s Department of Transportation.

Seang has been working for the people of Seattle for almost two decades.

And do you know where he was on December 24th as the snow began to fall?

Many of you were with family, sitting down with loved ones, but he was somewhere else:

Like more than 50 of his colleagues at SDOT, he was working to make sure our streets were safe to drive on.

He came in early to make sure that the snow plows were ready.

Then he worked all night long on a shift in his snow plow to make the streets safe and passable.

Like so many in City government, he knew many people were depending on him – and so he delivered.

To all City employees, to my amazing Cabinet, we expect a lot from you, but we know you can do it. We know you’ll get it done.

We also know that our City departments will have to do more with less.

Our significant economic growth has allowed us to increase our spending in recent years.

But these boom times won’t last and our current spending isn’t sustainable under our current projections.

Unfortunately, a deficit is on the horizon.

That’s why in preparing next year’s budget, I will be asking all the City’s departments to recognize we have to live within our City’s means.

That requires some tough choices about where we invest, and where we have to cut.

Just as our City’s growth has put new pressures on our City’s services, it’s also put it on our transportation system.

We will get this done.

It’s no secret that our traffic is bad and our buses are full.

The bad news is traffic will get worse before it gets better.

Mega projects will lead to mega gridlock.

The good news is, more people are using transit, and fewer people are driving alone in their cars.

We need to keep that trend going.

Though traffic will get more challenging, I pledge to you that we will continue to get more creative, we will make necessary investments, and we will improve these numbers.

To find ways to bust through gridlock, and make it safe for pedestrians and cyclists.

Along with delivering basic services, we will deliver the most essential service of all:

A safe and just community.

Keeping our City safe is an enormous task:

Last year, our Fire Department responded to nearly 100,000 incidents.

Including 17,000 fires.

They transported 6,000 people in potentially life-threatening situations to the hospital.

Our Seattle Police Department responded to more than 400,000 calls – and took more than 1,200 guns off the street.

Our fire and police departments have saved lives, helped victims and worked with neighborhoods on strategies to make everybody safe.

But despite the hard work, the sacrifice of our first responders, we must acknowledge that parts of our City do not feel safe and that too many young people taken by violence.

All too often this is because of gun violence.

We will not accept this.

Seattle residents must be safe in their neighborhoods and in their homes.

Our kids must be safe on the way to school and in their schools.

Schools are meant for joy and learning. They are not meant for lock downs and mass shootings.

Together we will fight for commonsense gun safety laws to protect our City, our neighborhoods, our schools, and our children.

We will also continue to fight for racial equity and social justice.

In one of my first official acts as Mayor, I reaffirmed our City’s commitment to the Race and Social Justice Initiative.

And I will push it until my last day in office.

Because we cannot have true economic opportunity unless we stand with community-based organizations and dismantle structural racism.

We must be honest that it’s real and we have to have the courage to face it.

Or we will never defeat it.

A safer and more just City also requires a police department that protects, serves, and is trusted.

In January, we took another step toward achieving this goal of reform for our Seattle Police Department.

That step came when a federal judge confirmed that we have made important progress under the consent decree.

It came after decades of community organizations demanding change, and hard work by SPD officers and civilians.

Our improved use of force policies and require training de-escalation and helping people in mental crisis.

We now have rigorous investigations when force is used.

And community-led accountability when things go wrong.

And yet we’re not done.

We must continue to get better. Lasting reform requires deep cultural change.

A critical next step is having the right permanent Chief of Police – someone who is committed to the reform process that we have begun.

And I want to ensure that your voice, as residents of Seattle, is heard in the Chief selection process.

Our search committee reflects our city and they will have a number of community events throughout our city.

But beginning today, anybody here or listening can go to seattle.gov and take a survey to tell me what you think we need in a new Chief.

We have a lot of work to do.

Are we up to the daunting task of building this safer, more just, more inclusive city of the future?


We will do it because we are guided by our shared values.

Standing up for those progressive values is the fourth focus of my time as mayor.

We believe every person is born with dignity and promise, and they deserve real respect and real opportunity.

A person’s value is not based on her net worth.

Or the country of birth.

Or the color of skin.

Or the gender of the person they love.

We believe we’re all better off when prosperity is shared, and is not just for the few.

And we know – we don’t just believe – we know that we are stronger when we are a truly inclusive place.

Those are American values, and those are Seattle values.

Seattle will stand up to be a safe and welcoming city – especially with Donald Trump as our President.

Our immigrant and refugee neighbors believe in the promise of America – and we will deliver on that promise.

All of our children shouldn’t just feel welcome here, they should thrive here.

And unlike the other Washington, we actually believe in science, and we know climate change is real.

It’s hurting our economy, it’s threatening this gorgeous place we love, and it’s jeopardizing our children’s’ futures.

Seattle has become a national leader in carbon emissions reduction, protecting our environment, and boosting clean energy.

You know, the City of Seattle is leading the way. We have one of the largest electric vehicles fleets in the entire country.

But there is more we can do, and must do.

That includes making sure our buildings are as green as possible.

In the coming months, I’ll propose legislation to create a new, City-wide pilot that will encourage the building of 20 of the most sustainable buildings anywhere.

We’ll show it can be done to scale and we’ll create a new model for green cities.

And when we talk about the environment, we will not forget that the burdens of environmental disaster almost always fall on those who are most marginalized.

True environmental progress means environmental justice and livable communities for people of color and for people who are struggling in our economy.

South Park, Georgetown, South Seattle – I have heard you.

I know efforts of groups like the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition, the Duwamish Valley Youth Corps and advocates like Paulina Lopez are so vital to making Seattle a better, more just place to live.

Thank you. Thank you for your work, and thank you for demanding that we listen.

Unfortunately, this President and his administration want to keep taking our City backwards.

In my first two and a half months, they have already threatened our City with multiple legal fights.

So to the lesser Washington, let me be clear:

When the lives of people and the environment we cherish in Seattle are under attack, we will never, ever back down.

You won’t win against me.

Against our City Council.

Against our Attorney Pete Holmes.

And you won’t win against the City of Seattle.

So just be smart: keep your hands off Seattle.

Here in Seattle, we don’t wait for others to tell us what our future is going to look like.

We don’t wait for a better future to come to us.

We invent it. We make it happen.

We create it.

We build it.

And that’s the fifth and final priority during my time as Mayor:

Seizing the awesome opportunities we have to build a more vibrant City for the future.

We have always been that City that invents the future.

And we always will be.

We’re the city that didn’t just survive a Great Fire, we got better.

We were the jumping off point for the gold rush.

We pretty much invented and then re-invented air travel

(first the airplane and then booking it online).

Coffee on every corner.

The personal computer revolution.

The cloud.

Bone marrow transplants.

And today in 2018, we are literally re-building, re-inventing and re-imagining our City for the future.

Just look at our waterfront.

The next year will be the Year of the Waterfront.

We already opened up Pike Place Market’s MarketFront project. If you haven’t been, go.

And we broke ground on rebuilding the new concert pier at Pier 62. Looking forward to it.

In 2019, the Alaskan Way Viaduct will finally come down, and it will be amazing! I know, get the last few rides in, but it will be amazing.

It will open the door for a “Waterfront for All”:

20 acres of new parks and public spaces. It’ll reconnect Elliott Bay with downtown and with our maritime heritage.

It’ll make our city a global city of the future. Everyone will know Seattle by its waterfront.

Another amazing opportunity: Seattle Center.

In December, I signed an agreement that paves the way for the rebirth of Seattle Center as a vibrant economic, arts, and cultural engine for decades to come.

It will include a new, modern arena.

And, as I said that day, that agreement is the best path to recruiting and bringing an NHL team to Seattle.

And to making sure that the Seattle Storm play at Seattle Center into the next generation.

And yes, to bringing back our Sonics.

Rainier Beach, can you imagine Nate the Great Robinson playing in gold and green in our hometown?

And already, we have taken another big step down the path of bringing professional hockey to Seattle:

The application has gone in to the National Hockey League.

And I’m telling you, mark it your calendars:

Starting March 1 at 10am, you can make your deposit for season tickets.

So let’s meet there when the puck drops!

In close – it is true.

What you’ve heard is true: I love Seattle to my bones.

And the main reason I love this City is the people who live here, and that we do the right thing, because it’s part of who we are.

And I know we will do the right thing and build a more affordable, inclusive future.

Will it be easy? No.

It will take grit.

It will take a willingness to try new things, to innovate, and to really understand what is working, and what is failing.

Above all, it will take all of us working together, knowing that we can be better, and asking how we can do it better.

Know this, Seattle:

I will bet on you every time.

I will stand with you every time.

And I will work with you to realize that future our children deserve.

So let us resolve together that next year, we can look each other in the eye and say:

The state of our City is more just.

The state of our City is even stronger.

That life for all who call Seattle home is better because of our resolve, our actions, and our love.

Thank you so much, Seattle.

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Question for your state representatives? Telephone Town Hall on Tuesday http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/question-for-your-state-representatives-telephone-town-hall-on-tuesday/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/question-for-your-state-representatives-telephone-town-hall-on-tuesday/#comments Tue, 20 Feb 2018 00:04:56 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909461 Got a question or request for your 34th District representatives in the State House, Rep. Eileen Cody and Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon? They’re holding a “telephone town hall” tomorrow night (Tuesday, February 20th), 6-7 pm:

Calls will go out to thousands of homes throughout the 34th Legislative District. Residents will be able to listen live and speak directly with their lawmakers. Those who do not receive a call can participate by dialing 877-229-8493 and using ID Code 116287

Alternatively, the telephone town hall can be live-streamed:


Both 34th District representatives are committee chairs – Cody, who works as a nurse, chairs the House Health Care and Wellness Committee; Fitzgibbon chairs the House Environment Committee.

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Better Metro bus service for Admiral/Alki? Councilmember Herbold’s request to SDOT http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/better-metro-bus-service-for-admiral-alki-councilmember-herbolds-request-to-sdot/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/better-metro-bus-service-for-admiral-alki-councilmember-herbolds-request-to-sdot/#comments Sat, 17 Feb 2018 19:43:15 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=909243

It’s been a hot discussion topic in WSB transit/transportation coverage for a long time – north West Seattle’s relative lack of Metro service compared to other areas. In her newest weekly update, Councilmember Lisa Herbold announced she is asking SDOT – via the letter embedded above – to find out what it would cost to fix that. (Though Metro is a county service, city dollars pay for some of the service.) If you haven’t seen it via e-mail or web, here’s her update:

As District 1 Councilmember, I regularly hear from residents of the Admiral and Alki neighborhoods about the lack of daytime and evening bus service to and from Downtown. Non-rush hour service on Bus Route 56, which connects Alki and Admiral to Downtown, was eliminated in 2012.

As a result, Admiral is the only Urban Village in Seattle without off-peak transit service to Downtown. It is also the only Urban Village not served by the Frequent Transit Network included in the Seattle Transit Master Plan. Urban Villages were adopted by Seattle in the 1994 Comprehensive Plan to direct growth to areas with enhanced services, so the lack of service is noteworthy, and unique. The lack of off-peak service to Downtown for an urban village also does not seem consistent with our approach to managing growth.

I have written a letter to SDOT Director Goran Sparrman, requesting that SDOT assess the costs associated with improving off-peak transit service on Route 56, and inform me of the City’s funding capacity to meet this need with Seattle Transportation Benefit District funds passed by Seattle voters in Proposition 1 in late 2014, which directly funds bus service in Seattle. You can see the letter here. While King County Metro operates bus service, since 2015, with the passage by Seattle voters of Proposition 1, Seattle funds additional bus service.

Background information is included below about how the Admiral Urban Village fits into the city’s transportation and growth plans.

After the State Legislature passed the Growth Management Act in 1990, to stop regional sprawl and direct growth into designated areas. The City of Seattle adopted the Urban Village Strategy in its passage of the 1994 Comprehensive Plan. By 1999, the City had completed passage of neighborhood plans throughout Seattle, to implement the state Growth Management Act, and to direct growth into areas with enhanced services to match the growth.

Seattle has six Urban Centers, six Hub Urban Villages and eighteen Residential Urban Villages. Of those 30 areas targeted for growth in the 2035 Comprehensive Plan, only Admiral lacks off-peak transit service to Downtown.

Figures from the Seattle Transit Master Plan illustrate the unique status of the Admiral Urban Village. Figure 3-1 shows the City Capacity Transit Vision for High Capacity Transit Corridors. Figure 1-2 shows how these current and planned corridors align with the Urban Centers, Hub Urban Villages, and Residential Urban Villages adopted in Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan.

All of Seattle’s six Urban Centers and six Hub Urban Villages are included in a corridor—nearly all of which go to Downtown. In addition, 16 of Seattle’s 18 Residential Urban Villages are included in a corridor. The only ones that aren’t included in one of the transit corridors for RapidRide, Light Rail, Priority Bus Corridors, and the Streetcar are 1) Admiral and 2) South Park.

Figure 4-1 shows the status of the Frequent Transit Network as of March 2016; it notes a few areas on the map for “Priority Upgrade to Frequent,” including the Admiral Urban Village.

The Frequent Transit network included in the Transit Master Plan is designed to provide service every 15 minutes or better, 18-24 hours a day, seven days a week. This document shows bus routes that meet the frequent transit service level for land use purposes (SMC 23.84A.038), i.e. 15 minutes or less for at least 12 hours per day, 6 days a week, and transit headways of 30 minutes or less for at least 18 hours every day.

The current Frequent Transit Network using land use standards serves 29 of the 30 areas targeted for growth, but not Admiral.

Transportation Figure 5, from the Seattle 2035 Comprehensive Plan, shows the Planned Frequent Transit Network, which includes SW Admiral Way through the Urban Village.

It appears that among Seattle’s 30 Urban Centers and Urban Villages, the Admiral Urban Village is one of only two not included the High Capacity Transit Network, and uniquely 1) is not served by the current Frequent Transit Network, and 2) has no off-peak bus service to Downtown. In addition, it saw a decrease in bus service to Downtown, with the 2012 elimination of off-peak service to Downtown on bus route 56. No buses leave for Downtown after 9 a.m., and return buses from Downtown operate only during evening rush hour.

Given the geographic distribution of jobs and work patterns, direct access to Downtown is important. Unless we are able to provide sufficient bus service to the Admiral Urban Village, it is less likely it will be able to accommodate its share of growth.

Metro Service prioritizes crowding, schedule reliability and service frequency. Proposition 1 noted that revenues would be used for these purposes, consistent with the Seattle Transit Master Plan and Metro’s Service Guidelines.

However, I believe we are missing an important element of equity in not considering how we can increase ridership in areas with low ridership and minimal options available to improve ridership. The lack of off-peak service to Downtown for an Urban Village also does not seem consistent with our approach to managing growth.

While King County Metro’s Service Guidelines target a minimum service level of at least every 60 minutes, even an exception for less frequent off-peak service would be an improvement.

If you would like to talk with Councilmember Herbold about this or anything else, her next “in-district office hours” event is Friday (February 23rd), 2-7 pm at South Park Community Center (8319 8th Ave. S.).

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VIDEO: What happened @ meeting #2 of City Council’s special HALA upzoning committee http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/video-what-happened-meeting-2-of-city-councils-special-hala-upzoning-committee/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/video-what-happened-meeting-2-of-city-councils-special-hala-upzoning-committee/#comments Tue, 13 Feb 2018 13:04:08 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=908786

While a vote is months away, the City Council is continuing its series of meetings about the legislation that could eventually upzone much of the city for the Mandatory Housing Affordability component of the Housing Affordability and Livability Agenda (HALA). The Seattle Channel video above is from Monday, when councilmembers met for the second time (agenda here) as the Select Committee that will decide the plan’s fate.

They were briefed by city staffers, first on what was described as “how the proposal got shaped,” then on specific highlights for Council District 4 in North Seattle, where a public hearing was scheduled hours later. They also took public comment before the meeting ended.

Councilmembers asked questions along the way, on topics from tree protection to encouragement of “flats.” Our area’s City Councilmember Lisa Herbold asked about one of her key ongoing concerns, displacement, saying she’d learned of a development (not in this area) that would replace 66 affordable units and only require the developer to pay for the equivalent of 18 units. (Staffers said they could talk with her about it after the meeting.) She also asked whether the presentation points represented changes since the first round of upzoning proposals; staffers said the legislation, which is what the committee is reviewing, is “the first time we’re laying out all of the detail.” She also asked if some components address geographic specifics; staffers offered an example from Rainier Beach.

The public-comment period at the end of the meeting included two speakers from West Seattle, Cindi Barker from Morgan Junction (who was a member of the original HALA advisory group a few years back) and Christy Tobin-Presser from The Junction. Barker told the council that they’re “not asking for enough in exchange for” the potential upzoning – the MHA fees, she said, should be higher, for example.

WHAT’S NEXT: The council’s Select Committee doesn’t meet again until March 12th. The calendar of district open houses and public hearings is here; the ones for our area are not until May and June.

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PEDESTRIAN SAFETY: See what the city has scheduled for West Seattle in next 5 years http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/pedestrian-safety-see-what-the-city-has-scheduled-for-west-seattle-in-next-5-years/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/pedestrian-safety-see-what-the-city-has-scheduled-for-west-seattle-in-next-5-years/#comments Wed, 07 Feb 2018 00:14:57 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=908206

Often, city projects that seem to appear out of the blue were actually in the works for years, contained in voluminous city Master Plans. So we thought you might be interested in a plan that was presented to a City Council committee this afternoon – the Implementation Plan for the recently updated Pedestrian Master Plan. It contains lists of specific evaluations and projects planned for specific intersections and streets around the city, so we broke out what’s on the lists for West Seattle, and when (for the full citywide lists, see the document, embedded above or here in PDF):


35th Ave SW & SW Graham St – New Signal
SW Roxbury St & 32nd Ave SW – Pedestrian Refuge Island
SW Roxbury St & 28th Ave SW – Pedestrian Refuge Island
SW Roxbury St & 23rd Ave SW – Pedestrian Refuge Island
SW Roxbury St & 21st Ave SW – Pedestrian Refuge Island
35th Ave SW & SW Snoqualmie St – Evaluate for Signal
29th Ave SW & SW Barton St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
62nd Ave SW & SW Admiral Way – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
Delridge Way SW & SW Webster St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade

California Ave SW & SW Brandon St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
24th Ave SW & Delridge Way SW – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
28th Ave SW & SW Thistle St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
23rd Ave SW & Delridge Way SW – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
Delridge Way SW & SW Cambridge St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
26th Ave SW & SW Cambridge St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
8th Ave SW & SW Cambridge St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade

Olson Pl SW & SW Cambridge St – Evaluate for Signal
18th Ave SW & Delridge Way SW – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
21st Ave SW Turn Road & Delridge Way SW – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
60th Ave SW & Alki Ave SW – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
9th Ave SW & SW Cloverdale St = Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
Garlough Ave SW & SW Admiral Way – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
16th Ave SW & SW Orchard St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
48th Ave SW & SW Admiral Way – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
9th Ave SW & SW Trenton St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade

3rd Ave SW & Olson Pl SW – Evaluate for Signal
California Ave SW & SW Findlay St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
25th Ave SW & SW Barton St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
10th Ave SW & SW Henderson St – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade
51st Ave SW & SW Admiral Way – Evaluate for Crossing Upgrade


35th Ave SW between SW 100th St and SW 106th St – 6 blocks


SW Orchard St between SW Myrtle St and Dumar Way SW – half-block

24th Ave SW between SW Thistle St and SW Barton St – 4 blocks


SW Edmunds St between Cottage Pl SW and 23rd Ave SW – stairs

SW Kenyon St between Delridge Way SW and 24th Ave SW – walkway

The implementation plan also mentions the new RapidRide corridors around the city – including the scheduled-for-2020 H Line on Delridge – as providing “potential crossing improvements and curb ramps,” and mentions Delridge, Fauntleroy, and 35th SW as “Vision Zero corridors.” No specifics on what’s next for 35th SW, which is running behind previously announced timelines for Phase 1 updates and Phase 2 plans. As for the Implementation Plan itself, SDOT says it will be updated each year. Committee members voted in favor of the resolution that formally adopts this plan, though that doesn’t mean everything in it will become reality – scheduling, funding, and other details would be separate.

ADDED TUESDAY NIGHT: Seattle Channel video from today’s meeting:

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SMALL BUSINESS ADVISORY COUNCIL: Here’s who’s in the new city-convened group http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/small-business-advisory-council-heres-whos-in-the-new-city-convened-group/ http://westseattleblog.com/2018/02/small-business-advisory-council-heres-whos-in-the-new-city-convened-group/#comments Fri, 02 Feb 2018 19:31:21 +0000 http://westseattleblog.com/?p=907819 The members of the new city-convened Small Business Advisory Council have just been announced, and we recognize two West Seattle businesses on the list. As explained in the news release from Mayor Jenny Durkan‘s office, the SBAC is “a group tasked with ensuring small businesses have a role in informing policies and programs, and have the access to resources they need to thrive and be part of the solutions to the challenges of growth and Seattle’s affordability crisis” and “will provide input on the impact of City decisions, make policy recommendations, and help increase access to tools and resources available to small businesses including arts and culture organizations.” The announcement notes that small businesses “account for more than half of all jobs in Washington State and employ nearly 200,000 people in Seattle.”

Here are the members announced by the mayor – we’ve highlighted those we know have local ties (please let us know if we missed someone!):

Co-Chair Joe Fugere, Tutta Bella Neapolitan Pizzeria
Co-Chair Taylor Hoang, Cyclo Corp., Ethnic Business Coalition
Co-Chair Donna Moodie, Marjorie Restaurant, Mint Holding
Co-Chair Tracy Taylor, Elliott Bay Book Company
Maryan Abdulle, Nasib Family Child Care
Zewditu Aschenaki, Salon Adidez
Joey Burgess, Queer/Bar, Grim’s Provisions and Spirits
Shaiza Damji, Hotel Nexus
Solomon Dubie, Café Avole
Annette Heide-Jessen, Kaffeeklatsch
Edouardo Jordan, Salare Restaurant, JuneBaby
Lacey Leavitt, Electric Dream Factory
Elise Lindborg, ZippyDogs LLC
Rachel Marshall, Rachel’s Ginger Beer
Michael Megalli, indie.biz
Debbie Millard, Ballard Oil Company
Molly Moon, Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream
Linda Morton, Terra Plata
Gayle Nowicki, Gargoyles Statuary
Kamala Saxton, Marination
Lei Ann Shiramizu, Momo
Leigh Stone, Crybaby Studios
Gail Stringer, Hawaii General Store
Chuck Wang, Stage
Edwin Wanji, Sphere Solar Energy
Beto Yarce, Ventures
Lara Zahaba, Stoup Brewing

The SBAC also will have two city councilmembers serving “ex officio”: West Seattle/South Park’s Lisa Herbold and, newly elected to citywide Position 8, Teresa Mosqueda. The group’s expected to meet quarterly, starting with its first meeting on February 21st.

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