Skip to page contents
Contact Us Site Map
You are here: Home) Government) Council) Meeting Materials) November 01, 2010


RECORD OF PROCEEDING OF CITY COUNCIL

CITY OF BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON


COUNCIL CHAMBERS, CITY HALL
Monday, November 01, 2010, 07:00 PM
Book: 64, Page: 1


REGULAR MEETING


Called To Order The meeting was called to order by Council President Gene Knutson with the Pledge of Allegiance led by John Lesow.

Roll Call
Present:
    Jack Weiss, Council Member, First Ward
    Gene Knutson, Council Member, Second Ward
    Barry Buchanan, Council Member, Third Ward
    Stan Snapp, Council Member, Fourth Ward
    Terry Bornemann, Council Member, Fifth Ward
    Michael Lilliquist, Council Member, Sixth Ward
    Seth Fleetwood, Council Member, At Large

Excused:

ANNOUNCEMENT(S)

    On Monday, November 8, at 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. in the Mayor’s Boardroom there will be a Special Worksession regarding the 2011 budget.
    On Tuesday, November 9, at 1:00 p.m. in the Mayor’s Boardroom there will be a special meeting of the Council’s Lake Whatcom Reservoir and Natural Resources Committee regarding a Lake Whatcom Restoration Plan.
    On Monday, November 15, at 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. in the Mayor’s Boardroom there will be a Special Worksession regarding the 2011 budget.
    On Monday, November 22, at 7:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers there will be a Public Hearing regarding the Silver Beach Neighborhood Plan Amendment.
    On Monday, November 22, at 7:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers there will be a Public Hearing regarding the extension of the Demonstration Program for Permanently Affordable Homeownership Program.
    On Monday, November 22, at 7:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers there will be a Public Hearing regarding the 2011 Preliminary Budget.
    On Tuesday, November 23, at 9:00 a.m. in Council Chambers there will be a special meeting of the Council’s Planning and Community Development Committee regarding program options for Incentive Zoning for Affordable Housing.

Bellingham City Council meets all requirements of the State of Washington Open Meetings Act.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

BUCHANAN / BORNEMANN moved approval of the October 11, 2010 minutes of the regular Council Meeting as submitted. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


PRESENTATION

AB19014 1. DIABETES AWARENESS MONTH PROCLAMATION

Mayor Dan Pike proclaimed November 2010 to be Diabetes Awareness Month. Information only.


15 - MINUTE PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD

Leonard Lindstrom addressed the council with regard to social issues.

John Lesow asked that the city council support the city's Interim Planning Director and oppose a Whatcom County proposal for a Zoning Text Amendment that would permit drive-through services in URMX Zones [Whatcom County File #ZON2005-00017].


PUBLIC HEARING(S)

AB19015 1. AN ORDINANCE TO BMC 17.82 REGARDING A MULTI FAMILY TAX EXEMPTION IN URBAN CENTERS

David Stalheim, Block Grant Manager provided an overview of the amendment and explained that it would: comply with 2007 state legislation, expand the City Center target area and add Samish Way and Fountain District urban villages to the target areas.

The purpose of the program is to encourage residential development in the mixed-use areas through tax incentives, provide a viable mixed income population within the urban centers, direct growth into areas with existing infrastructure and achieve development that is conducive to transit.

Mr. Stalheim reviewed the legislative authorization and the city’s adoption in 1999 [Ord. 1999-09-054]. Additionally, he reviewed the basics of the program and how the tax exemption works. The city chooses the target areas based on the criteria that it has to be within urban (mixed use) areas and must be an area that lacks sufficient residential housing. Furthermore, the city establishes the standards and guidelines. He reviewed maps showing the original target area, basically the downtown/city center area (1999) and expansion, Morse Square in 2003 [2003-03-011] and the City Center Design Review Guidelines in 2006 [2006-06-060]. The current proposal would add Area A - Chestnut and Cornwall; Area B - Old Town; Area C - boundary consistency issue along Holly Street; Samish Way Urban Village and Fountain District Urban Village.
  • In response to council member’s questions, Mr. Stalheim clarified the following:
    • Improvements do not go on to the tax roles.
    • The state has empowered the cities to use this exemption which does affect all taxing districts e.g. Port of Bellingham, school districts.
    • State legislation defines multi-family as 4 units or more in a building.
    • This would not underride any of the planning or zoning rules currently in place.

Council President Knutson opened the public hearing.

Anne Mackie, President, York Neighborhood Association supports the extension of the program into Area 8 of the York Neighborhood which is in the Samish Way Urban Village (6-1/2 acres); however, to be consistent with their commitment to intelligent growth they believe development should be in appropriate places (like the Samish Way Urban Village) and at the same time they would like the city to support preservation of historic neighborhoods. They request that the tax exempt boundaries that were developed in 1999 be redrawn to exclude Area 9 north of Lakeway Drive in the National Historic District and Area 4, west of Ellis Street.

She made the following points:
    Retaining the tax exempt district in areas that have been identified as historic districts and in Area 4 (a potential historic district) is contradictory.
    Area 2 and Area 9 have been identified as potential historic districts.
    Some cities have developed historic district overlay zones which add an additional layer of regulations for a specific area.

The Association requests that the tax exempt boundaries be redrawn so that incentives to remove historic housing are not in place.

They also asked that the city consider creating a ten-year tax exemption that would mirror the Multi-family Tax Exemption for adaptive reuse of historic buildings.

Kirsti Charlton also requested that Area 9 and Area 4 be exempted from the current proposal.

David Hovde supports the Multi-family Tax Exemption wherever opportunities can be provided for greater building on arterials and transit lines. Also, he favors the 'at least 20% affordable housing' but not mandating the 100% affordable housing for the twelve-year exemption.

Jeff Kochman, President, Barkley Company supports the proposal and said that if the city is looking for incentive to create mixed use properties then Barkley Village should be included in this amendment and this incentive could be put to good use.

Council Member Lilliquist asked Mr. Kochman how he would be affected if the mixed use requirement were to be removed.

Mr. Kochman said the mixed use requirement is nice because it provides activity level for the first floor, however, there are times when it does not work because it is hard to find tenants for users of that ground floor space. To make it a mandate is not a good thing for its future success but if it makes sense, in particular area or location, it could be a good thing.

Paul Schissler supports the ordinance and observed that it would be useful to make this incentive available in other locations such as Barkley Village and arterials but perhaps not on every downtown street. He said it is a great urban form that makes a nice mix in a downtown or an urban village location. He observed that there is flexibility in how this incentive is applied and that 100% of the dwelling units benefit from the tax exemption even though only 20% of those units need to be affordable. This may need to be reconsidered at some point in the future. In the meantime, however, it makes sense to use this incentive in a way that benefits the community.

He suggested that in the years ahead, the city look at a parking standard that is more urban, especially in the downtown. A urban parking standard would be appropriate in urban villages as more and more people do not have a car and the very expensive structured parking that is often required is not needed.

There being no further comments, the public hearing was closed.

Council Member Lilliquist would not like this to be seen as an incentive to remove historic homes and wondered if there might be a mechanism to still have this apply to Area 4 but not in a way that would be harmful.

The Public Hearing will remain open and continued. Worksession scheduled for November 22, 2010.

Council directed staff to consider other areas in the city including Barkley Village, Fairhaven and questions raised by York Neighborhood residents with regard to Areas 4 & 9. Council Member Weiss asked that staff check proposed and existing boundaries to see if there is any overlap of other historic residential areas e.g. Lettered Streets.


REPORTS OF COMMITTEES

COUNCIL STANDING COMMITTEE MEETINGS:

PUBLIC WORKS / PUBLIC SAFETY
MEMBERS: CHAIR, BARRY BUCHANAN; STAN SNAPP; JACK WEISS

AB19016 Resolution #2010-28
1. A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE FIRE CHIEF TO ENGAGE IN DISCUSSIONS WITH ADJACENT FIRE AGENCIES REGARDING COOPERATIVE AGREEMENTS FOR FIRE AND EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY OF BELLINGHAM AUTHORIZING GOOD FAITH PARTICIPATION IN DISCUSSIONS RELATING TO THE PROVISION OF COOPERATIVE FIRE AND EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES.”

BUCHANAN / SNAPP moved final approval of Resolution #2010-28. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


PLANNING & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
MEMBERS: CHAIR, TERRY BORNEMANN; SETH FLEETWOOD; MICHAEL LILLIQUIST; JACK WEISS

AB19017 Resolution #2010-29
1. A RESOLUTION APPROVING THE 2011 ACTION PLAN ALLOCATING FEDERAL FUNDS FROM HUD FOR LOW AND MODERATE INCOME CITIZENS IN BELLINGHAM

A RESOLUTION RELATING TO THE ADOPTION OF THE 2011 ACTION PLAN OF THE 2088-2012 CONSOLIDATED PLAN, THE USE OF COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT (CDBG) FUNDS AND HOME INVESTMENT PARTNERSHIP PROGRAM (HOME) FUNDS, THE ALLOCATION OF FUNDS TO SUPPORT SELECTED CITY HUMAN SERVICE AGENCIES AND DIRECTING THE MAYOR TO SUBMIT THE 2011 ACTION PLAN TO THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT.”

BUCHANAN / SNAPP moved final approval of Resolution 2010-29. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


PARKS AND RECREATION
MEMBERS: CHAIR, SETH FLEETWOOD; TERRY BORNEMANN; STAN SNAPP

AB19018 1. NOISE VARIANCE REQUEST FOR THE PATTLE POINT TRESTLE RENOVATION PROJECT AT BOULEVARD PARK

FLEETWOOD / SNAPP moved to approve the noise variance request to BMC 10.24.120(4) to allow night work on the Pattle Point Trestle Renovation Project at Boulevard Park. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


AB18626 2. APPROVAL OF STRATEGIC PLAN FOR SOUTH AREA GREENWAY 3 LEVY LAND ACQUISITIONS. This item was not discussed at the evening meeting.


FINANCE & PERSONNEL
MEMBERS: CHAIR, STAN SNAPP; BARRY BUCHANAN; MICHAEL LILLIQUIST

AB19019 CB 13651
1. AN ORDINANCE AMENDING THE 2010 BUDGET TRANSFERRING FUNDS FROM THE LITTLE SQUALICUM OESER SETTLEMENT FUND TO THE BEYOND GREENWAYS FUND

AN ORDINANCE RELATING TO THE 2010 BUDGET TRANSFERRING $146,827.91 FROM REPAIR AND MAINTENANCE / NATURAL RESOURCES EXPENDITURES AND THE ESTIMATED ENDING DESIGNATED RESERVE IN THE LITTLE SQUALICUM OESER SETTLEMENT FUND TO THE ESTIMATED ENDING DESIGNATED RESERVES IN THE BEYOND GREENWAYS FUND.”

SNAPP / LILLIQUIST moved approval for first and second reading. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


AB18993 2. 2011 DEPARTMENT BUDGET PRESENTATIONS - LEGAL DEPARTMENT - HEARING EXAMINER - FINANCE DEPARTMENT - EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

Information only.


COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE
CHAIR, GENE KNUTSON

AB19020 CB 13652
1. AN ORDINANCE AMENDING BELLINGHAM MUNICIPAL CODE 6.32.010 AND 6.32.020 REGARDING TEEN DANCES

AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON AMENDING BELLINGHAM MUNICIPAL CODE 6.32.010 AND 6.32.020.”

LILLIQUIST / SNAPP moved to amend the proposed resolution at 6.32.010.G, first sentence and replace “is responsible” with “shares responsibility”. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.
LILLIQUIST / BUCHANAN moved approval for first and second reading as amended. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


AB19021 Resolution #2010-30
2. RESOLUTION ADOPTING THE 2011 CITY COUNCIL MEETING SCHEDULE

A RESOLUTION FIXING THE TIMES AND DATES OF THE 2011 REGULAR MEETINGS OF THE BELLINGHAM CITY COUNCIL BEGINNING JANUARY 3, 2011.”

WEISS/ BUCHANAN moved final approval of resolution #2010-30. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

          3. APPROVAL OF CITY COUNCIL COMMITTEE AND/OR SPECIAL MEETING MINUTES

None submitted at evening meeting.

          4. OLD/NEW BUSINESS
    Council Member Weiss noted that the County Executive has proposed a budget that would take money out of city generated revenues and put it into the county road fund. He asked how the administration has responded.

      Mayor Pike noted that the county is not taking the taxation increase in all cities to an advisory vote of the citizens and that he has begun consulting with other cities mayors so that this issue can be approached in unison.
    Council Member Weiss referenced AB 18626 which was discussed during committee but not at the evening session. He reviewed the April 12, 2010 meeting and determined that in the afternoon two of the three committee members voted to have a deference of the Greenways South Side Strategic Plan occur until the completion of negotiations of the sale of that property but when it was brought forward in the evening the motion that was made was simply to defer. He noted that the action taken [this] afternoon may not be correct.
    Council members, staff and the audience recognized Council Member Snapp’s upcoming 70th birthday.
EXECUTIVE SESSION - Report only

1. POTENTIAL LITIGATION: Staff provided information on a potential litigation matter. Direction was given. No action taken.

2. POTENTIAL LITIGATION: Staff provided information on a potential litigation matter. Direction was given. No action taken.

3. LITIGATION: PSE v. City of Bellingham: Staff provided information on a litigation matter. Direction was given. No action taken.

4. POTENTIAL PROPERTY ACQUISITION: Staff provided information on the potential acquisition of a 24 acre parcel located adjacent to the north of Sudden Valley, adjacent to the east of the Stimpson Reserve, in close proximity to Lake Whatcom. The property is zoned R2A (potential of 12 development units, but subject to temporary moratorium on subdivision). The seller is the Don and Ellen Easterbrook Living Trust.

SNAPP / BUCHANAN moved to authorize the purchase of said property at a purchase price of $1,020,000. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

5. LABOR RELATIONS UPDATE: Staff provided an update on labor negotiation with What-Comm Dispatchers Guild.

BUCHANAN / WEISS moved to approve the Labor Agreement with What-Comm Dispatchers Guild with the following terms:

Term: 2 years
Wages: An average wage increase of 1.5% for each year of the 2-year
contract:
January 2011 0% July 2011 1%
January 2012 2% July 2012 1%
Benefits: 2011: No change to medical plan or premium sharing.
              2012: City contribution capped at Group Health premium minus employee share. Employees selecting the more expensive plan pay the difference between the full premium amount and the City’s contribution.
MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


MAYOR'S REPORT

          1. Standing time for briefings, updates and reports to Council by the Mayor, if needed. Information only.

CONSENT AGENDA
All matters listed on the Consent Agenda are considered routine and/or non-controversial items and may be approved in a single motion. A member of the Council may ask that an item be removed from the Consent Agenda and considered separately.

AB19022 1. BID AWARD FOR 34TH STREET SEWER LID, BID NO. 65B-2010, EU-0155

AB19023 2. AUTHORIZATION OF CHECK ISSUE FOR ACCOUNTS PAYABLE FROM OCTOBER 15, 2010 TO OCTOBER 22, 2010.

AB19024 3. AUTHORIZATION OF CHECK ISSUE FOR PAYROLL FROM OCTOBER 1, 2010 TO OCTOBER 15, 2010.

BORNEMANN / SNAPP moved approval of the Consent Agenda in its entirety. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


FINAL CONSIDERATION OF ORDINANCES

AB18989 1. CB 13650
AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON RELATING TO THE LEVYING OF TAXES AND ESTABLISHING THE AMOUNT TO BE RAISED IN 2011 ON THE ASSESSED VALUATION OF THE PROPERTY WITHIN THE CITY

BORNEMANN / SNAPP moved approval for third and final reading. Upon motion, said bill was placed on final passage and approved by the following roll call vote:

AYES: BORNEMANN, BUCHANAN, FLEETWOOD, KNUTSON, LILLIQUIST, SNAPP, WEISS
NAYS:
ABSTENTIONS:

MOTION CARRIED 7-0 and was thereafter named Ordinance #2010-11-060


ADJOURNMENT
There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:14 P.M.
Gene Knutson, Council President

ATTEST: Linda D. Anderson City Clerk Representative
APPROVED: 11/22/2010



This is a digital copy of an original document located at Bellingham's City Hall. The City of Bellingham specifically disclaims any responsibility or liability for the contents of this document. The City of Bellingham does not verify the correctness, accuracy, or validity of the information appearing in this document.

Top of Page ^ Top of page