Council Study Session April 12, 2016

Standard

Agenda is here:  

Agenda Packet is here:   (for Retail Marijuana Discussion only; no documents available for Encampment Permit discussion)

Planning Commission Report is here:  

Disclaimer:   I am still learning the City system and process.   I took notes on things that stood out to me; I highly recommend you watch the video of the session and draw your own conclusions. If I’ve posted something you feel is in error, please message me or leave a comment at the bottom of this post.  I’ll correct any issues that are incorrect EXCEPT opinions (because opinions are mine and you may have a different viewpoint.  It’s still a free country.)

Video not posted at the time of this blog; but can be found here:  

First off, a THANK YOU to the Redmond City Council who waded through 2 of the most unpleasant topics I can think of in the same night.  They gave the issues careful consideration, not everyone agreed and decisions were made.

Retail Marijuana Zoning

Glossary:  

MP (Manufacturing Park)
BP (Business Park)
GC (General Commercial)
UC (Urban Centers)
OV (Overlake Village)
WSLCB (Washington State Liquor & Cannabis Board)
OSPI (Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction)
Buffer — the distance or area surrounding a location under consideration

This is not the first study session on this topic; and there were updates offered by the COR staff based on the Issue Matrix (see Packet above).

Most discussion centered around WHERE Retail businesses could/would be allowed.  Council wanted the stores to be in visible locations, but not necessarily in the core retail areas.  Manufacturing zones not acceptable as Retail Marijuana is not a manufactured product and did not meet the criteria of being an “adjunct” store; similar to a deli in a manufacturing park (MP) zone because the employees of the various businesses could eat lunch there; OR a business that produced shipping boxes having a small retail store on site to sell the product they produced.

Other cities sell in retail products zone (see matrix) and BP; however Council wanted businesses NOT to be located in the back of BP to provide more transparency and safety.  There are also buffers from street fronts and regulations for signage, etc. that were discussed later.

The Vape retail and Liquor retail stores near Fred Meyer/Home Depot is zoned MP, but also near a Montessori school.  Buffers for Retail Marijuana are different from Vape or Liquor stores.

Possible acceptable zones were located on Willows Road, 124th, Union Hill Road and near Whole Foods.  Council had a map which showed acceptable BP recommended locations in light blue.  Map locations in purple are zoned MP.

Council made comparisons to Vape, liquor and retail marijuana; noting that the three substances were all legal with licenses being regulated by the WSLCB.  Council also discussed keeping Redmond regulations in line with the WSLCB regulations for retail marijuana stores.

Recommendations/Decisions by Council:

Use OSPI definitions of schools, including elementary and secondary and other education facilities.  Some education facilities would not fall under the buffer guidelines as defined by OSPI.

Use WSLCB recommendations for buffers.

Advertising and signage to follow state recommendations (1 sign, not within 1000 feet of school or playground, business name only)

Number of stores:   State allows up to 4; at this time only 2 business have been given licenses by WSLCB; 17 license requests for Redmond with state.  Licenses are done on a tiered basis; no way of knowing who will receive until notified.

Stores may be no closer than 1000 feet from another retail marijuana store.

Council recommends reviewing ordinances in 3 years; after WSLCB has had time to gather statistics, other information on program.

State offers financial incentives for additional police and other assistance for cities that have retail businesses.

Earliest date for voting by Council would be May 17th.  City requirements have a 21 day notice to parties of record; no public hearing is necessary.

Encampment Temporary Use Permit

Glossary:

RLUIPA:  Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act

The Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA), Pub.L. 106–274, codified as 42 U.S.C. § 2000cc et seq., is a United States federal law that prohibits the imposition of burdens on the ability of prisoners to worship as they please and gives churches and other religious institutions a way to avoid burdensome zoning law restrictions on their property use.

The permit is requested by the host; City does not initiate the request.  Using the RLUIPA, if the host requests the permit approval, the City approves (within guidelines).  Permit stay is for specific length of time, but host does not need to allow encampment to stay that length.

There is some question of permit approval based on Health/Safety burden requirements.

There was some question on sanitation burden for 6 months (cost and health/safety); no published data on this is available for a 6 month period.

Technical Committee Recommendation:

No change in permit fees ($2,684.36),
120 days length of stay,
365 days between stays,
3 stays with 1 permit,
no recommendation or change to permit type (Currently “Type 1”).

Planning Commission Recommendation:

Permit fees reduced to $1,000,
180 days length of stay,
180 days between stays,
1 permit for 5 year period,
no recommendation or change to permit type.

Reminder that permit is issued to HOST by site, not occupant.  If host moves location or site changes, permit could be invalidated.

Shutz, Birney, Stilin supported 180 day length, 365 days between stay with services required (*)

Margeson, Myers, Allen, Carson supported 120 day length (current allowance); if a 180 stay length allowed then an 18 month period between stay recommended.

At this point only churches involved with homeless in Redmond are Redmond Methodist, Overlake CC, St. Jude and RedWood Family.

Council further discussed that active program for services being offered must be shown by occupant (policed by host or City?)

Final recommendation from Council to Staff:

Permit Type 1
Fee:  $2,864.36
3 Stays per permit
120 days per stay
365 days between stay
Permit would expire in 5? 10? Years BUT must follow permit recommendations each time or permit is invalid/forfeit.  Sufficient notice would be given to permit holder if city changed recommendations or intended on expiring approved permits.

(*) Additional Requirements Recommendation:

Background checks performed by RPD for outstanding warrants and or Sex offender list.  Revocation of permit clause if violated.

Service Accessibility (local and other businesses and services allowed to work with occupants) with incentives

Site/host specific (see matrix for definition)

Additional requirements will require an additional Public Hearing phase/meeting (date to be announced dependent on calendar availability)

The wording of these requirements is not available at this time; however minutes of Study Session and/or video of same would provide more information as to content of requirements.

Mayor Marchione noted that there was continuing question by residents “Why Education Hill”.  His response was “7 churches on Ed. Hill but only 6 other churches in rest of city”.    <see below>

{Timberlake, Grace Christian Fellowship (3), Union Hill, First Baptist Church (Redmond and Rose Hill), City Church, Evangelical Chinese Church, Full Gospel Christian Center, Faith Lutheran, First Church of Christ Scientist, Redmond Presbyterian, Church of Holy Cross Episcopal, Church of LDS (several), Armenian Apostolic, Trinity Anglican, RedWood Family, Washington Cathedral, Ling Shen Ching Tze Temple, Meadowbrook, Antioch, Redmond Assembly of God, Redmond United Methodist, Creekside Covenant, Redeemer Reformed, English Hill Presbyterian, Overlake} listed as churches near Redmond in http://www.yellowpages.com/redmond-wa/churches  Total of 28 minimum religious affiliations or buildings in Redmond.

Council Talk Time

April 28th Town Hall at Audubon Elementary

2 more Town Halls planned for May and October, TBA.

Advertisements

2016 Book List (A Review) – First Quarter

Standard

 

I read a lot.  I’m a fast reader; read books I love over and over and over and have books in both print and digital.  My favorite genre is romance, although I also love biographies, auto-biographies, historical fiction and true crime.

One of the things I have not taken the time to read over the course of my life is what many would term as classic literature.  I have read some classics like “Atlas Shrugged” but struggle with Dickens and Austen.  Just too much imagery and unfamiliar language for me to keep up with the story.

There are several lists of “Classic Literature” out there, including:

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2003/oct/12/features.fiction

and http://www.listchallenges.com/100-classic-books-challenge

So this year, I’ve decided to read some of the classics that, previously I’ve not read.

 

First book I finished was Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs.  This was an interesting, but slow read.  I’ve seen several movies of “Tarzan”, including Greystoke.  I wouldn’t say that Burroughs has a writing style that captured me; but I wanted to know how much of the story the movies get right and how much they left out.

 

I then re-watched Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (1984); the acting was as horrible as I remembered and the movie veered from the book about 1/3 of the way through.  It was also interesting that the movie story continued past the first book, so I’ve decided to read The Return of Tarzan, the 2nd book in the series.

 

13 Hours:  The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi by Mitchell Zuckoff.  This is not a genre I usually read, although I like factual accounts of historical events.    I wanted to read this book before seeing the movie.  I enjoyed the book because of the story and the perspective it offered; HOWEVER, it’s a bit slow getting started and it was pretty technical unless you’ve got some idea of military procedure, terminology, etc.

 

It was interesting reading about the story from the men involved in Benghazi, plus all the behind the scenes politics.  The author makes it very clear that it’s not a political telling of the story, only as factual as possible from interviews and recollections of the men and women involved.

 

Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy  I watched this movie last year with Carey Mulligan and fell in love with it.  From reading the credits I was shocked that it was a Thomas Hardy novel; so I put it on my list of classics to read.  I’ve tried for 6 weeks to get past page 11.  Thomas Hardy writes like Charles Dickens; that’s to say that he uses 25 words when 3 would have done.  Here’s a great example of what I mean:

He had just reached the time of life at which ‘young’ is ceasing to be the prefix of ‘man’ in speaking of one.  He was at the brightest period of masculine growth, for his intellect and his emotions were clearly separated: he had passed the time during which the influence of youth indiscriminately mingles them in the character of impulse, and he had not yet arrived at the stage wherein they become united again, in the character of prejudice, but the influence of a wife and family.  In short, he was twenty-eight, and a bachelor.

 

Page after page of that type of writing.  Too much for my brain to decipher, draw, put together and enjoy all at the same time.  I have only barely made it to the part where he meets Bathsheeba (except we don’t know it’s “her” yet) by the end of chapter one and I’m exhausted.

I know there are a great many people who enjoy Dickens, and that style of writing.  No criticism intended at all; it’s just not for me.

One quarter of the year gone; and four books (not all classic but none in my usual genre) off my list.  I’m not sure what I’ll read next; I’ve got several hundred ebooks on my Kindle Fire which will keep me busy through our vacation next week and I’m currently obsessed with SimCity BuildIt on the Fire, so I’ll have some time to pick my next book.