Toplines from HPAC’s October meeting

October 30, 2023 12:55 am
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 |   Delridge | Highland Park | Neighborhoods | West Seattle news

Got something to say to the city about the streets and sidewalks of Highland Park, Riverview, and/or South Delridge? Don’t miss the chance to get your feedback in for the Seattle Transportation Plan – comments on the draft version are due Tuesday. That’s one of the community reminders that emerged this past Wednesday night when HPAC, the area’s community coalition, met in person.

The meeting, facilitated by (corrected) HPAC co-chairs Craig Rankin – who is leaving that position, with Barb Biondo succeeding him – and Kay Kirkpatrick was held in person, at the Southwest Precinct community room. City Attorney Ann Davison was a spotlight guest (as she had been at another West Seattle community-council meeting last month, the Admiral Neighborhood Association).

Davison gave a general outline of how her office works. She talked about her initial work of getting backlogged cases handled and her lawsuit against Kia and Hyundai regarding the flaw that allows so many to be so easily stolen. That led to a discussion among the group about the number of dumped Kias/Hyundais in Highlad Park. One question came up – whether stolen and recovered cars are tracked. SPD Crime Prevention Coordinator Mark Solomon said his department has data tools and does map where cars and taken and where the cars wind up.

Davison used that example and a question over the city’s new drug law to remind people to report the things they see. Rather than get bogged down in “the police won’t come” preemptive pessimism, she said, call and report, and let the next step happen. That way there’s at least data on where and when crimes might be occurring.

Regarding the city’s new drug policy – she presented some background on that, and said she’s in favor of getting people into treatment, so she’s working with her staff to ensure that’s a priority for people whose cases are referred to the City Attorney’s Office under the new law.

HPAC attendees also heard an update on the progress toward building a new Highland Park Improvement Club building. HPIC’s Rhonda Smith said the latest period for project comments to the city is over. But the permit process still has a ways to go, and that’s why the fire-damaged building hasn’t undergone any demolition work yet. HPIC still has fundraising to do to ensure they can cover the cost of the new building, and they’re working with professional fundraisers to advance that effort. (Here’s how to donate.)

Speaking of money, HPAC co-chair Rankin, who’s active with the West Duwamish Greenbelt Trails group, said grant money is available for forest-restoration and trail improvements. (You can find out more about the WDGT group here.)

NEXT MEETING: HPAC meets fourth Wednesdays most months – watch for updates here.

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