City Council Meeting – Post 1 of 3

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It was a looooong one; I’m going to break it up into 3 separate posts hoping your eyes don’t glaze over completely.

Redmond City Council Meeting
Tuesday, May 17th, 2016
7:30 PM Council Chambers

Agenda available here:  https://redmond.siretechnologies.com/sirepub/pubmtgframe.aspx?meetid=252&doctype=agenda

If you ‘click’ on each underlined item, you will see available documentation for each to the right of the screen.

Notes from the Agenda:

Proclamation “Affordable Housing Week” May 16-22, 2016

  • 246 students in LWSD were homeless during recent count
  • (Hopelink) 64,000 families helped (2015); 90% earned less than $33k/year
  • 7 year waitlist for housing
  • First every Affordable Housing Week in Redmond
  • Providence (Senior Affordable housing project next to Wells Fargo bank) will have 75 units. Providence was granted a 75 year lease for $1.

Items from the audience begins at 12:41 in the video.  Not to be used for speaking time for any of the Public Hearing Items.

 Gordon and Ann Buck spoke requesting the City to approve Sewer Service to their property (see below AM 16-109).

 Qian Zhang spoke with similar request to Buck request (they are neighbors).

David Morton spoke on gas-powered leaf blower noise pollution.

Consent Agenda begins at 26:18 and includes a discussion of AM 16-108 (C3) and AM 16-109 (C4).

AM 16-108 (C3) Approval of Sewer Service Outside City Limits (Zhang) and AM 16-109 (C4) Approval of Sewer Service Outside City Limits (Buck) were pulled from the agenda and would be discussed in Agenda section B.

Ms. Allen asked that they be pulled and moved to a “date certain (1)” for questions regarding status of petition for annexation and storm-water mitigation with church.  Ms. Allen made a motion to move these items, there was no 2nd offered; so Council President Margeson motioned for approval (not removal) and received an approval vote of 6 to 1 (Allen voted no).    {see my “Opinion post for more on these items}

Remainder of Consent Agenda items were approved; including AM 16-115 (C10) and Ordinance 2831, with a vote of 7-0.

Approval of Arts & Culture Commission appointment:  Savita Krishnamoorthy

Marker 30:09 in the video; Mayor Marchione requested that the Staff Report AM 16-120 Marymoor Park Summer Concert Noise Mitigation Update be moved forward in the meeting.

Report was presented by Maxine Whattam, Parks and Recreation Director; Kevin Brown, King County Director of Parks & Recreation, Nora Robinson (Manager of Marymoor Park) and Rob Thomas (AEG).

Debrief in Fall of 2015 regarding Noise and traffic issues at 2015 Summer Concert Series at Marymoor; this is a follow-up to that debriefing and a report to identify the solutions for 2016 season.

Presentation reported that “Cardioid Speakers” would be used by AEG as they were found to reduce bass sound; location and direction of speakers would also be managed.

Use AEG’s system for all events – unless artist specifically uses cardioid speakers in their concert set-up.

The “Sublime” event was not allowed to return to the series this year.  This event was the primary event where complaints were made.

King County will be planting more trees to provide an additional noise buffer.

King County and AEG will work together with Redmond Police Department with a pilot program for a 1-way entrance; this will be managed and reviewed per event.

WSDOT will publish the KC Parks schedule on their website to give people a heads-up for traffic concerns.

Temporary reader-board to inform drivers of upcoming events.

Joint press release with City of Redmond and King County to keep people informed.  These releases will also be posted on Facebook and other social media sites; as well as mailers to neighbors of the park.

Open House on May 26th with a tour of the venue as well as email alerts from AEG.

39:11 shows the concert calendar for the summer season.

Mid- and end of season meeting with City of Redmond and AEG to react to any other concerns that come up.

At 42:00 the Council began the 1st of 3 Public Hearings for the evening.

 

AM No. 16-117: Annexation of Lake Washington School District Property in NE Rose Hill  Planning (pp. 186)

  1.          Ordinance No. 2832: An Ordinance Annexing Approximately 11.9 Acres Bounded by the Western Edge of 134th Avenue NE on the West, Redmond City Limits to the East, on the North by the Northern Line of Lot 3, Block 157, Burke & Farrar’s Kirkland Addition to the City of Seattle, Division No. 31, and on the South by the Southern Line of Lot 5, Block 157, Burke & Farrar’s Kirkland Addition to the City of Seattle, Division No. 31, as Recorded in Volume 25 of Plats, Page 26, King County, Washington, and Requiring the Property to be Assessed and Taxed at the Same Rate and on the Same Basis as Other Property Within the City, File No. LAND-2014-02021

Jason Rogers, City of Redmond. No questions from Council; no comment from public.

AM No. 16-117 adopted without objection, 7-0.

 

At 44:50, Public Hearing began for AM No. 16-118: LAND 2015-01937– Redmond Zoning Code Amendment: Temporary Use Regulations for Encampments (Available in documents section at right)

David Lee with COR Planning Department spoke to what the Public Hearing would focus on:  Service Access Requirements and Background checks.

 

The Public Hearing addressed the “ALTERNATIVES TO STAFF RECOMMENDATION”:   The alternatives the Council will have with regard to taking action on the temporary encampment zoning code amendment will be:

A. Direct staff to develop code language incorporating the hearing items of service access requirements, the permit life, and background checks with the previously reviewed and agreed to direction from the April 12, 2016, study session.

B. Direct staff to prepare for additional analysis for presentation at a subsequent study session or regular meeting.

C. Deny the amendment.

Speakers:

Karen Studders – Member of Eastside Human Services Forum Work Group, Eastside Interfaith Social Concerns Council, Eastside Homelessness Advisory Council among other organizations.

Works with municipalities and faith communities and neighbors.

  • Not enough beds for people to sleep in.
  • Faith Communities are ‘regulated’ by RLUIPA (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_Land_Use_and_Institutionalized_Persons_Act)
  • Washington State’s Law (2)
  • Municipalities should uphold the rights of religious organizations if we are asking them to provide services.
  • People experiencing homelessness should not be treated as criminals; concerned about asking for security checks. Warrant checks ‘are done by all of our shelters’ in King County.
  • Seattle has no limit to time encampments can stay; has 3 City sanctioned encampments; however money is involved and faith based organizations as well as non-profits should not have to pay.
  • Woodinville and other municipalities have been taken to court over similar legislation.

<ran over 4 minutes so rest of her speech not on video> 

Michael Ramos  Executive Director, Church Council of Greater Seattle

  • Seattle University Study “No Rest for the Weary”
  • Not enough shelters; need encampments to survive.
  • Religious communities are uniquely qualified as they feel it is their mission
  • Washington State law guards against imposing conditions that don’t provide safety
  • Required – homeless does not necessarily mean non-safe
  • Services should be encouraged but not demanded or required as it violates the rights of the faith community.

Linda Benson

  • Affiliated with Nourishing Networks
  • This is not a City by city issue but a regional issue; collaboration is a must.
  • This affects all the residents of the Eastside.
  • Don’t rush into a decision; wait to develop. Decision should be suspended until the regional dialogue has been developed.

Scott Biethan

  • Resident of Education Hill and member of Redmond Planning Commission
  • Concerned about decisions are we taking the easy way out?
  • Hoping to make Redmond a leader in this issue, collaborate with region.
  • Path we are on now is the wrong path. 

Bob Yoder

  • Full support of the amendment; questioning the services be dependent on the host.
  • Should be organization that provides services.
  • Hero House supplies regional support for mentally ill. Provides job support, etc.
    • Membership is free, provides van or shuttle service and free bus tickets.
  • Evergreen Health has social workers in Emergency Department
  • Hopelink has financial educational program.

Linda Seltzer

  • Shelters support (difficult to understand—too close to the mic)
  • Prejudice against homelessness should cease.
  • Social services; chronic medical problems should be eligible for Social Security. Municipalities should take this in to consideration.

Elizabeth Maupin

  • Human Services Commission in Issaquah
  • Increase stock of housing affordable to community; is crucial to preventing homelessness.
  • Curb rising rents or increases homelessness.
  • Approving longer stays; frequents stays stresses residents.
  • Wants longer than 120 days stays. Encampments needing emergency stays in between hosted stays.  Costly to organizers, campers and community.
  • Affordable housing takes time. Alternatives will be explored at Muslim Association of Puget Sound (MAPS) Wednesday night.  7 PM, conference room. 

Karen Morse

  • Resident of Bellevue.
  • Redmond is advocating regional solutions.
  • Redmond has testified state wide about reducing requirements for encampments
  • Would like to caution City about reducing requirements.
  • Lives across the Street from Tent City 4 (5 stays). Problems with encampments – both with management and the methods of management.
  • Camp residents have been mistreated by camp management; people have been hurt.
  • Examples: Share has been giving Seattle requested financial documents for 5 years, signed and reviewed by a CPA whose license expired 32 years ago.
  • Promise that no camp residents will have ‘active, outstanding warrants’; however Camp leaders had active outstanding warrants themselves.
  • Camp safety of residents and questionable financial practices.
  • Blog “The Blog Quixotic” has more information and narratives of issues.
  • Many hosts are either hands-off or blind-sided to the encampment issues. Some churches have stopped hosting for those reasons.
  • Guarding Public safety requires major changes, not just a few tweaks.

Britt Carlson

  • Pastor, Community Baptist Church of Issaquah
  • Has hosted Tent City 4 in the past, knows the complications that come from hosting.
  • As Christians, we live under a commandment to feed the hungry, give water to the thirsty and house the homeless. We need all the help we can get to live up to the commandments given.
  • Ask for City’s continued support. 

Paige Norman

  • Seem to be a lot of advocates for the homeless but very few advocates for the neighborhood. I am a Christian, I believe in the Bible, I am not a hater or believe Not in My Back Yard.  I simply want people to think about the safety of our neighborhoods.
  • I personally have not been to the encampments, but my pastor and others from my church have gone with job offers or other offers of assistance and have been turned away.
  • We want people to succeed and have places to live, and places for their children to go to school. We also want security and safety for our neighborhoods.
  • We want the police to be able to do their jobs and not have to overlook shoplifters at the local QFC’s on a regular basis.
  • WE want the library to be a safe place to have our high schoolers study and our children do reading time and not be afraid to go in the back study {tables} or be escorted to their cars.
  • We want the downtown and the slough to be a safe place for families to walk, ride their bikes and walk their dogs. WE want businesses to be protected so that their clients and customers are safe as well.
  • Redmond and Education Hill are a leader and we want to continue to be a leader, we do not turn the other way and say we do not want that here.
  • For me to rent or buy a home, get a checking account, set up utilities, get a job or get paid, I have to show ID, and in many cases have a background check. That’s to live here in permanent housing; I don’t find it unusual that someone who is living here for 6 or 9 or 12 months temporarily be asked to have a security check
  • I think the community can and should help with classes, childcare. I myself am a nanny and am more than happy to watch someone’s kids while they go on a job interview or attend training at Workforce or other places. I teach cooking classes as part of my Personal Chef and Catering business.  I am more than happy to help people learn how to cook.
  • I do not want to stand back and say we do not want to help; I also do not want to stand back and worry about my children finding syringes and all other kinds of drug paraphernalia, as well as condoms along the trails, bicycle parks and baseball parks and schools.
  • Life is going fast enough as it is; let’s not turn away from it and ignore the problems we already have.

Public Hearing closed at 1:20:53.

Council direction given by Mayor Marchione to give staff direction tonight OR to have a study session.

Mr. Myers:

  • All volunteers who work with encampment residents must have background checks. Background checks do not cost money, they are provided free of charge by the Washington State Patrol.
    Our goal as a council is to help people and help them move out of homelessness.  That is why we are interested in having the services be available.  We are not requiring the services or the site host to provide them; we do expect the services would be available.
  • I’ve been on the board of directors of the “Together Center” and I have been to Tent City and have been turned away on offers to provide health services, mental health counseling, dental services and housing. Our goal is to provide the tools and resources to move out of homelessness.
  • Would like a Study Session to discuss the new information gathered tonight.

Mr. Shutz would support having an additional Study Session to review some of the input.  Requiring and funding the services was not the intent of the discussion; including language that encouraged our local organizations to require access to services as part of the joint operating agreement with the organizer would be helpful.  Continuing to build the regional organization around this policy so taking another few months to would be appropriate.

Mr. Stilin would like the council to consider 150 days {as opposed to 120} would help with stabilization of encampments.  Study Session would be warranted. Separate chronic homeless vs. encampments.

Ms. Allen a study session to iron out the issues. Repeated that the purpose to make sure services providers have ACCESS, not requiring the faith communities to provide services.  Denying access is unacceptable.

Mr. Margeson Study session to discuss requirement vs. accessibility definition.  Warrant vs. background checks.

Ms. Birney Agree for need of study session

Mr. Carson Study session for background check; working with residents and faith communities.

 Mayor Marchione will work with council leadership to schedule Study Session.

 

8 minute break before Public Hearing on Retail Marijuana.  {To be continued on separate post}

 

Resources Links: 

Together Center http://www.togethercenter.org/
The Blog Quixotic http://roominate.com/blog/
Seattle Times report on Issaquah Tent City stay:  http://old.seattletimes.com/html/eastsidenews/2003831851_tentcity11e.html
Hopelink http://www.hope-link.org/
Providence http://www2.providence.org/Pages/default.aspx

https://www.redmond.gov/common/pages/UserFile.aspx?fileId=173398

Cardioid Speakers         http://www.audioexperts.eu/barth-b4-c13.html
AEG Live (Redmond) http://www.aeglive.com/
Eastside Human Services Forum http://eastsideforum.org/
Eastside Interfaith Social Concerns Council http://eiscc.net/
Church Council of Greater Seattle http://www.thechurchcouncil.org/
Nourishing Networks http://nourishingnetworks.net/networks/
Hero House http://herohouse.org/
Human Services Commission, City of Issaquah http://www.ci.issaquah.wa.us/index.aspx?NID=503
Muslim Association of Puget Sound (MAPS) http://www.mapsredmond.org/
Seattle University Study “No Rest for the Weary” http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2776425

  • According to uslegal.com: “Date certain means a fixed or appointed day, or a specified day. Almost all instruments and deeds will specify a date certain for its execution.”http://leg.wa.gov/LawsAndAgencyRules/Pages/constitution.aspx

  • SECTION 11 RELIGIOUS FREEDOM.   Absolute freedom of conscience in all matters of religious sentiment, belief and worship, shall be guaranteed to every individual, and no one shall be molested or disturbed in person or property on account of religion; but the liberty of conscience hereby secured shall not be so construed as to excuse acts of licentiousness or justify practices inconsistent with the peace and safety of the state. No public money or property shall be appropriated for or applied to any religious worship, exercise or instruction, or the support of any religious establishment: PROVIDED, HOWEVER, That this article shall not be so construed as to forbid the employment by the state of a chaplain for such of the state custodial, correctional, and mental institutions, or by a county’s or public hospital district’s hospital, health care facility, or hospice, as in the discretion of the legislature may seem justified. No religious qualification shall be required for any public office or employment, nor shall any person be incompetent as a witness or juror, in consequence of his opinion on matters of religion, nor be questioned in any court of justice touching his religious belief to affect the weight of his testimony. [AMENDMENT 88,1993 House Joint Resolution No. 4200, p 3062. Approved November 2, 1993.]
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