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Monday, January 13, 2014, 07:00 PM
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Called To Order The meeting was called to order by Council President Cathy Lehman who led the Pledge of Allegiance.

Roll Call
    Jack Weiss, Council Member, First Ward
    Gene Knutson, Council Member, Second Ward
    Cathy Lehman, Council Member, Third Ward
    Pinky Vargas, Council Member, Fourth Ward
    Terry Bornemann, Council Member, Fifth Ward
    Michael Lilliquist, Council Member, Sixth Ward
    Roxanne Murphy, Council Member, At Large


    · The City Council tries to create consistency in the timing of the more active and substantive committee meetings. However, there are occasions in which this would create an inefficient structure in relation to other committee meetings, as was the case for setting this agenda. The Public Works/Public Safety Committee will usually meet at 9:00 AM and Planning Committee will usually meet at 10:30 AM on Monday mornings when practical. The Council President and Committee Chairs reserve the right to make adjustments for a more efficient use of time and resources. Agendas are published on the Council's "Meeting Materials" webpage on Thursdays prior to a meeting, allowing for the public to have notice of changes.

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


Leonard Lindstrom discussed social issues.

Yoshé Revelle discussed climate change.

April Barker, President, Birchwood Neighborhood Association Board discussed problems in the Birchwood Neighborhood, specifically at the corner of Birchwood/Northwest. Problems include loitering, homelessness, fighting, trash and substance abuse. She would like to work with the city to get anti-loitering laws for the area so the police have the tools to move people along and make the neighborhood feel safe.


AB20261 1. Amendment to the Cornwall Park Neighborhood Plan and Bellingham Municipal Code 20.00.050 to remove the requirement to extend Orchard Place between West Orchard Drive and Baker Street


Lisa Pool Senior Planner, described the proposed amendment and explained that the cross street is outdated, poses a barrier to development of an industrial infill site and is not needed for transportation purposes. The Planning and Development Commission recommends approval.

Council Member Weiss noted that usually, connections are a priority.

Staff responded that generally that is correct but this will help meet the goals of infill development and is an industrial infill opportunity on the west side of Interstate 5.
Council President Lehman opened the public hearing.

There being no speakers and the public hearing was closed

KNUTSON / WEISS moved approval for first and second reading. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

AB20262 2. An update to the 2008 Parks, Recreation and Open Space (PRO) Plan, Chapter 7 of the Bellingham Comprehensive Plan

Leslie Bryson Design & Development Manager, Parks & Recreation Department presented the update to council and explained that the city updates its PRO Plan every six years as required for grant eligibility under the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program.

Ms. Bryson reviewed grants that have been received for facilities, parks, and projects. The process has included the Steering Committee, public meetings, reviews by the Planning and Development Commission and City Council, a telephone survey and, a web survey.

The Park Board acted as the Steering Committee and recommends approval of the plan with one addition: add an integrated sign system as a priority.

Population numbers are being updated with a new forecast that will be used for the 2016 Comprehensive Plan update and, at that time, the city will need to revise this plan accordingly.

The overall vision of the Plan includes: equal access to parks and trails, water access, access to nature, newly emerging sports and, facilities with a variety of uses.

Ms. Bryson reviewed level of service for parks, trails and open space and how it is measured. To achieve the proposed level of service of 35.8 acres/1,000 in the year 2029, the city must add 287 acres.

The goals and objectives of the plan are aligned with Council Legacies and Strategic Commitments, adopted by Council in 2009.

Ms. Bryson reviewed survey results, which included that over three-quarters of respondents would approve a new Greenway Levy, at the same level, to replace the existing levy.

Using information from public meetings and surveys, priority projects were developed and include: add parks and trails for ½ mile service radius; develop funded projects and add open space anchors and greenway corridors per the Greenway Strategic Plan.

Council President Lehman asked for a clarification on the difference between a neighborhood park and a community park.

Ms. Bryson responded that a neighborhood park is usually 5-10 acres in size, within ½ mile of where people live while a community park is, usually, approximately 20 acres and has facilities that are unique to the park.

Council President Lehman opened the public hearing.

Vincé Biciunas (speaking as private citizen) supports the PRO Plan Resolution. She asked, with regard to priorities in the PRO Plan, if it might be easier for funding to happen if the “Complete a master plan for the Chuckanut Ridge property (a.k.a. Fairhaven Highlands)” were moved from Priority 2 to Priority 1 [Draft 2014 Parks, Recreation & Open Space Plan, Chapter 7, Priorities, p. 60].

Kelly Morgan (Birchwood Neighborhood) requested that the Bay to Baker trail, that currently ends under the bridge at Northwest and Birchwood Avenues (the “Coal Mine Bridge”), be continued to include a well-lit and accessible stairway from Squalicum Parkway up to the intersection (near Morrie’s Drive-In). Her request is based on: safety, connection between neighborhoods and pride in neighborhood. She would like a stairway as soon as possible to accommodate these issues and also safe walking to school to Birchwood Elementary, which opens in September 2014.

Geoff Middaugh, Chair, Park & Recreation Advisory Board, reported that the Board voted unanimously in favor of the PRO plan.

Louise Bjornson commented on the PRO Plan and cited:
    · For safety reasons, there is an urgent need for the trail connection to be built from the Bay to Baker Trail on Squalicum Parkway under the Coal Mine Bridge up to the Northwest Avenue intersection.
    · Parks are needed in the north part of town: Cordata and Birchwood are lacking in parks; Alderwood has a little green spot on the map, but no actual park. She suggested a park in the vicinity of Bennett and McLeod.
    · The Association of Washington Cities is discussing “Sitable” Communities. Ms. Bjornson feels that the park at the foot of Cornwall would be a good area to apply sitable planning. She said, “make this park as accessible and sitable as Boulevard Park”.

April Barker, President, Birchwood Neighborhood Association, noted full support of the Neighborhood Association Board for a staircase accessing the [Bay to Baker Trail up to intersection of Northwest & Birchwood] for improved safety, walkability in the neighborhood and improving accessibility to Squalicum Park and the waterfront.

Jo Fuller prefaced her remarks by explaining that she has Multiple Sclerosis and how that affects her ability to access parks and public spaces. Boulevard Park is her favorite - it’s level, there’s a place to park her car, it is user friendly and has convenient intervals where one can stop and rest. She would like to see the disabled community be a part of the dialogue in developing new parks. Ms. Fuller added that she would like to see the Parks Department go one step beyond satisfying the ADA requirements and encourage a spirit of involvement with individuals that are in the protected groups that the ADA was designed to help.

Bob Carmichael concurred that the north end of Bellingham is under-served with parks, well below the rest of the city, while Cordata and North Bellingham are the fastest growing areas in the city. He asked that the city take an ongoing look at the parks level of service, which is very low in that area and well below what the rest of the city enjoys. The Planning and Development Commission worked hard in looking at this issue; re-prioritized their recommendations and made a park in the north end a Priority 1. He encouraged the council to accept that recommendation.

Christy Nieto reiterated that any help the Birchwood Neighborhood can get to access the Bay to Baker trail, near Morrie’s Drive-In, would be greatly appreciated, would be a huge improvement and help with safety issues.

There being no further comments, the public hearing was closed

LILLIQUIST / BORNEMANN moved to refer to the Parks & Recreation Committee. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.


Public Works / Public Safety
Terry Bornemann, Chair
Michael Lilliquist, Jack Weiss

Council Member Murphy stepped out of Chambers.

AB20263 1. Bid Award for 2014 Portland Cement Concrete Repairs, Bid #83B-2013

BORNEMANN / WEISS moved to award Bid No.83B-2013 for Portland Cement Concrete Repairs to S&S Construction, Inc. of Bellingham, Washington as the lowest responsive, responsible bidder and to authorize the Mayor to enter into a contract with them for the amount of their bid which is $247,850.00. MOTION CARRIED 6-0.

Council Member Murphy returned to Chambers.

AB20264 2. Bid Award for 2014 Portland Asphalt Pavement Repairs,
Bid #85B-2013

BORNEMANN / WEISS moved to award Bid No. 85B-2013 for Portland Asphalt Pavement Repairs to Western Refinery Services of Ferndale, Washington as the lowest responsive, responsible bidder and to authorize the Mayor to enter into a contract with them for the amount of their bid which is $353,600.00. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

AB20265 3. Authorization for the Mayor to enter into an Interlocal Agreement with Whatcom County, for Economic Development Investments (EDI) Grant and Loan for North End Regional Stormwater Facility.

BORNEMANN / KNUTSON moved to authorize the Mayor to enter into an Economic Development Investment (EDI) Program, Interlocal Loan and Grant Agreement with Whatcom County for North End Regional Stormwater Facility Project. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

Community and Economic Development
Terry Bornemann, Chair
Michael Lilliquist; Pinky Vargas

AB20266 1. Amending Affordable Housing Covenant for Harborview Apartments


KNUTSON / LILLIQUIST moved final approval of Resolution #2014-01. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

Committee Of The Whole
Cathy Lehman, Chair
Jack Weiss; Gene Knutson; Pinky Vargas; Terry Bornemann; Michael Lilliquist; Roxanne Murphy
          1. Approval of Minutes

The following regular City Council meeting minutes were approved as submitted.

LILLIQUIST / BORNEMANN moved approval of the December 2, 2013 and December 16, 2013 minutes of the regular meetings. MOTION CARRIED 5-0-2, Murphy and Vargas abstained.

KNUTSON / WEISS moved approval of the December 9, 2013 minutes of the regular meeting. MOTION CARRIED 4-0-3, Lehman, Murphy and Vargas abstained.

LILLIQUIST / WEISS moved approval of the January 6, 2014 reorganization meeting minutes. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

          2. Old/New business
Staff clarified that the Sunnyland Neighborhood Plan is currently on the docket.

Brian Heinrich announced the retirement of Fire Chief Christensen. Assistant Fire Chief Bill Newbold has been appointed interim.

Brian Heinrich noted that the Mayor did not award a contract for the PEG proposal. She will work with the PEG Committee.

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

AB20267 2. Mayor's reappointment of Alexandra Wiley, Mike Smith and Trish Harding to the Bellingham Arts Commission for Council's approval

KNUTSON / BORNEMANN moved to authorize the Mayor’s reappointment of Alexandra Wiley, Mike Smith and Trish Harding terms ending January 1, 2017 to the Bellingham Arts Commission. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

AB20268 3. Mayor's reappointment of Alexandra Wiley to the Historic Preservation Commission for Council's approval

BORNEMANN / WEISS moved to authorize the Mayor’s reappointment of Alexandra Wiley, term ending January 1, 2017, to the Historic Preservation Commission. MOTION CARRIED 7-0.

AB20269 4. Mayor's reappointment of Rick Qualls to the Bellingham-Whatcom County Commission Against Domestic Violence for Council's information

Information only.

AB20270 5. Mayor's reappointment of Jim Emerson to the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board for Council's information

Information only.

AB20271 6. Mayor's reappointment of Kelly Hart to the Tourism Commission for Council's information

Information only.

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.

AB20272 1. Close the Little Squalicum / Oeser Settlement Fund


AB20273 2. Interlocal Agreement between the City and the Port of Bellingham for mutual use of facilities

AB20274 3. Authorization of checks issued for pay period December 6, 2013 through December 12, 2013

AB20275 4. Authorization of checks issued for pay period December 13, 2013 through December 19, 2013

AB20276 5. Authorization of checks issued for pay period December 20, 2013 through January 2, 2014

AB20277 6. Authorization of checks issued for payroll December 11, 2013 through December 23, 2013

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



There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 8:51 p.m.

Cathy Lehman, Council President

ATTEST: Linda D. Anderson City Clerk Representative
APPROVED: 01/27/2014

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.