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02/14/2012 00 Council General Information KA V r.. 1 ,,tiY4 • s ' f a f 0.v: 1 YAKIMA CITY COUNCIL February 14, 2012 1. Council General Information • • ♦ L BUSINESS OF THE CITY COUNCIL YAKIMA, WASHINGTON AGENDA STATEMENT Item No. For Meeting of: February 14, 2012 ITEM TITLE: Council General Information SUBMITTED BY: CONTACT PERSON /TELEPHONE: SUMMARY EXPLANATION: 1. City Meeting Schedule for week of February 13 -20, 2012 2. Preliminary Future Activities Calendar as of February 13, 2012 3. 2/9/12 Weekly Issues Report 4. Preliminary Council Agenda 5. 1/31/12 Letter from Isaac & Dorothy Burton regarding Senior Repair Program 6. 2/2/12 Letter from Stacey Duncan regarding Senior Repair Program 7. 2011 Water Quality Report 8. Newspaper /Magazine Articles: * "Local Governments Continue to Cope with Tight Budgets," American City and County, January, 2012 * "Menace to Society," American City and County, January, 2012 * "Emerging Information for Local Government," Municipal Research News, Winter 2012 * "2011 Local Ballot Box Recap," Municipal Research News, Winter 2012 Other { Resolution Ordinance (specify) Contract: Mail to: Contract Term: Amount: Expiration Date: Insurance Required? No Funding Phone: Source: APPROVED FOR f - ' `" y � City Manager 1 SUBMITTAL: STAFF RECOMMENDATION: BOARD /COMMISSION RECOMMENDATION: ATTACHMENTS: Click to download i ! 2 -14 -12 Council General Information CITY MEETING SCHEDULE For February 13, 2012 — February 20, 2012 Please note: Meetings are subject to change Monday, February 13 2:00 p.m. Bid Opening — Council Chambers Tuesday, February 14 10:00 a.m. County Commissioners Meeting — Council Chambers Wednesday, February 15 5:30 p.m. Community Review Board — Council Chambers Monday, February 20 • City Offices Closed — Presidents Day Holiday Office Of Mayor /City Council • Preliminary Future Activities Calendar Please Note: Meetings are subject to change Meeting, ; Organization Meeting Purpose - Participants Meeting Location Date/Time • ? .. Mon. Feb. 13 8:30 a.m. Pension Board Meetings Board Meeting Coffey HR Conference Room 5:30 p.m. Yakima Air Terminal Study Scheduled Meeting Adkison Airport Conference Room Session Tue. Feb. 14 11'00 a.m. Council Nominating Scheduled Meeting Adkison, Ensey, Mayor's Office Committee Bristol Wed. Feb. 15 12'00 p m. PAL Board Meeting Board Meeting Coffey PAL Center Mon. Feb. 20 12 00 p.m. City Offices Closed for Presidents' Day Holiday Tue. Feb 21 .rw,.,, .....,. w..�. . � . .........._.�.,.._ 12.00 p m Miscellaneous Issues Scheduled Meeting Cawley, Adkison TBD 5.00 p.m (T) City Council Executive Scheduled Meeting City Council Council Chambers Session 6 p m City Council Meeting Scheduled Meeting City Council Council Chambers Wed. Feb 22 5,30 p m. Historic Preservation Scheduled Meeting Bristol Council Chambers Commission Thur. Feb 23 3.30 p m YAKCORPS Executive Board Meeting Cawley CED Conference Room Board Mon. Feb 27 12.00 p.m. Capitol Theatre Board Board Meeting Bristol Capitol Theatre Board MEMORANDUM February 9, 2012 TO: The Honorable Mayor and City Council Members FROM: Michael Morales, Interim City Manager SUBJECT: Weekly Issues Report • COUNCIL NOMINATING COMMITTEE: This Committee (Adkison, Ensey, Bristol) will be meeting on Tuesday, February 14 at 11:00 a.m. in the Mayor's Office to discuss outside Board and Commission vacancies. • LEGISLATION UPDATE: House Bill 2432 was passed out of House Ways and Means Committee with strong bi- partisan support and a unanimous vote. The bill is now in House Rules Committee. Unfortunately the $5 million needed for prevention and intervention programs was stripped from the bill. Representative Ross' bill is in Rules 2 review. • POLICE CHIEF SELECTION UPDATE: I will be traveling to the applicants' respective cities in the next few weeks to meet with various community members, staff members, elected officials, and others. Clark (Mercer Group) provided me with background information and reference checks. I hope to make a decision shortly after my visits have been completed. City Attorney, Jeff Cutter, will be the Acting City Manager during my absences. I will be available by blackberry if you need anything. • FREE EVENT DISCUSSING HUMAN TRAFFICKING: Rose Gunderson, Co- founder of Washington Engage, will be in Yakima on Friday, February 17 at St. Timothy Episcopal Church (4105 Richey Road) at 6:00 p.m. discussing community responses to human trafficking in the Yakima Valley. Rose will be sharing the experiences of the Thurston County community action team as well as sharing ideas on how our community can get involved and make an impact on the awareness and prevention of Human Trafficking. Rose will then take our community's concerns and addressing them in drafting future legislation. • STUDY SESSION: Due to Council members being out of town on February 28 (Cawley, Bristol and Coffey) and the National League of Cities Conference on March 13 (Cawley, Ettl, and Morales), the first Council study session will be March 27 from 10:00 a.m. — 12:00 p.m. This meeting will be to review the Comprehensive Plan and CDBG budget. CaIly is working on getting the other meetings scheduled. PRELIMINARY FUTURE COUNCIL AGENDA February 14 NO SCHEDULED BUSINESS MEETING (Information packet on February 9) February 21 (T) 5:00 p.m. Executive Session — Council Chambers 6 :00 p.m. Business Meeting, — Council Chambers • Recognition of retiring City Employee - Debbie Kloster • Ordinance amending YMC 13.16.070 to allow alcohol use during special events at Fisher Park Golf Course • Review request for proposals document and timelines for Downtown Clean and Safe Contract solicitation • Final contract payment for Gardner Well • Resolution amending the City's contract with Pharmer Engineering regarding the City's Wastewater Treatment Plant • Final contract payment for 16 Avenue & Washington Avenue intersection improvements • Resolution authorizing a Professional Services Agreement with Sargent Engineers, Inc. in an amount not to exceed $6,021, for engineering services required to develop a bridge replacement/rehabilitation report for the 18 Street underpass • Resolution authorizing City Manager to execute consent to assignment of contract for paratransit (Dial -a -Ride) services, from Medstar Cabulance, Inc. to Medstar, LLC • Resolution authorizing the City Manager to execute a Professional Services Agreement with Huibregtse, Louman Associates for the extension of the City's Industrial Wastewater Collection System in the vicinity of 23 Avenue and River Road 2/9/2012 11:27 AM 1 o Ordinance relating to Public Safety; amending Section 6.68.020 to the City of Yakima Municipal Code for the purpose of adopting Revised Code of Washington 9A.52.060 which prohibits the making or having of burglar tools U Consideration of special event license for Cinco de Mayo event o Amended budget and CAPER report from ONDS • Consideration of special event license agreement amendment for Hot Shots event • Resolution authorizing City Manager to execute and approve Cayenta system contract • Resolution authorizing a twelve month School Resource Officer Agreement with the Yakima School District for four (4) school resources officers, to be retroactively applied beginning July 1, 2011 7:00 p.m. Public Hearings 2/9/2012 11:27 AM 2 RECEIVED CITY OF YAKIMA - FER022012 January 31, 2012 OFFICE OF CITY COUNCIL City of Yakima Council Members City Manager's Office 129 N Second Street Yakima WA 98901 Dear City of Yakima Council Members: On behalf of my wife and myself, we would like to express our sincere appreciation for the City OF Yakima's Senior /Disabled Emergency Home Repair Program. Prior to your assistance, my wife and I had no shower availability and were trying to make do with sponge baths. Additionally, the plumbing for our sink left us with inadequate facilities to even wash our dishes. Being in the financial situation we are, it seemed like saving the kind of money required to effect these repairs was just beyond our abilities. Were it not for the kindness and generosity of this Program, we would still be without the facilities as identified above. Our sincere appreciation and gratitude for the repairs and your assistance. At' Isaac & Dorothy Burton 413 S 16 Avenue Yakima WA 98902 RECEIVED CITY OF YAKIMA February 2, 2012 FEB 0 2012 OFFICE OF CITY COUNCIL Dear Council Members " Council v Members good folks from the Office of Neighborhood Development recently installed grab bars in my shower. I suffer from Multiple Sclerosis and it was becoming very difficult for me to safely get in and out of the shower. I applied for the Senior /Disabled Emergency Home Repair Program and within days I was accepted and had several grab bars installed in my shower at no cost to me. I'm now able to shower safely as the bars provide stability and help me get in and out of the shower. Social Security disability is my only income and after basic living expenses there just isn't any extra money to pay for anything else. I am so grateful for this program. I hope you'll continue to do whatever you can do to support this wonderful program. Sincerely, Stacey Duncan 1003 S. 5 Ave Yakima WA 98902 Copy to: Archie M. Matthews, ONDS Manager City of Yakima Water / Irrigation s fi • i ; s 1 2011 -01 10* } �� � �k K €�. � 'r AaTER ''QUA�LjITY REPORT h� ; {K� 4,. a, {x » "� .: �3." ' t• �sRaca ', �' ' "' ' . ,_ ' ^ t.a ern. _a t s K^ ' '..s`.' S. .,, `. t ?' ;_ ,.. '".' '{, rr" �. '" AD nWSIDE TRW VSSU E Origin of Water 2 Yakima's Water Scores High Marks For Safety Key to Tables 2 There were no violations of the standards for safe, clean water processed into Water Quality Re- 3 the city's water distribution system during 2011. In all categories, the levels of Wellhead Protec- 4 chemical compounds and substances in Yakima's drinking water are substantially below acceptable contamination levels set by the Environmental Protection Capital Improve- 4 Agency (EPA) and administered by the Washington State Department of Health City Contacts 4 (WSDOH). In our water quality control program we test for more than 100 items Internet Sites 4 on a continuous, daily, weekly, monthly, and annual basis. In every case, the lev- els of the compounds were below federal regulations, ranking Yakima's drinking City of Yakima — Water water among the safest in the country. For measurements of individual corn - Facts. pounds, see page 3. • $0 55/100 Gallons "Este informe contiene informacion importante sobre la calidad de • Treated 3.28 Billion aqua de su comunidad. Trata Gallons of Water in de traducido, o habla con un amigo que lo entiende bien." 2011 from the Naches River Water Treatment Plant. Safeguarding Our Water • Produced 0.520 Billion Gallons of Water from 3 To improve public health and protect drinking water sources, the Department of deep groundwater wells. Health adopted the federal Groundwater Rule (GWR) on October 1, 2010. The rule builds upon the Total Coliform Rule (TCR) by addressing the health risks of We'll be happy to answer fecal contamination in groundwater sources. One of the provisions of this new any question about the rule is Triggered Source Monitoring, which occurs when one of the system's rou- City of Yakima's water tine distribution samples collected under the TCR is total coliform positive. quality Call our This process was put to the test in May when during our 48" transmission main Water Quality Specialist improvement project one of our samples was "positive." Not only were we re- at (509) 576 -6477. quired to perform the routine upstream /downstream repeat samples but were also ' required to sample the wells for contamination. As expected, all follow -up sam- Public and education ples were negative. You may be interested to know that the City has been sam- tours of the City of piing our wells since 2008 in preparation for this very scenario Yakima Water Treatment For more information about the original "positive" test, see page 3. Plant may be arranged by calling Water Quality Report You can participate in In 1996, the Safe Drinking Water Act was amended, requiring that all community decisions concerning our water systems provide their customers with an annual water quality report. This drinking water during City annual water quality report is designed to give the City of Yakima's customers in- Council meetings, every formation about the quality of the water they are receiving The presence and de- first and third Tuesday at tection of chemical compounds and other substances in the water supply is nor - City Hall Council Cham- mal, and does not necessarily mean that the water poses a health risk. Page 2 WHERE WE GET OUR WATER Drinking water for our Yakima customers comes from the Naches River, a surface water source, into the Naches River Water Treatment Plant at Rowe Hill. During an emergency, water can also be obtained from three deep groundwater wells. The wells are located at Kiwanis Park, Yakima Airport, and Kissel Park. These wells tap into the Ellensburg Aquifer. Our wells are also sampled and tested for contaminants. How do we protect the water quality of our emergency wells? See page 4, Wellhead Protection Program SOURCE WATER EDUCATION The sources for drinking water include rivers, lakes, streams, ponds, reservoirs, springs and wells. As water travels over the surface of the land or through the ground, it dissolves naturally- occurring minerals and radio- active material, and it picks up substances that result from animal and /or human activity. Substances that may be present in source water include: (A) Microbial contaminants, such as viruses and bacteria, which may come from sewage treatment plants, septic systems, agricultural livestock operations, and wildlife. (B) Inorganic contaminants, such as salts and metals, which can be naturally- occurring or result from urban storm runoff, industrial or domestic wastewater discharges, oil and gas production, mining, or farming (C) Pesticides and herbicides, which may come from a variety of sources such as agriculture, storm -water runoff, and residential uses. (D) Organic chemical contamination, including synthetic and volatile organics, which are by- products of indus- trial processes and petroleum production, and can also come from gas stations, urban storm -water run- off, and septic systems. (E) Radioactive contaminants, which can be naturally occurring or the result of oil /gas production and mining activities. CROSS CONNECTION WHAT IS IT AND WHY IS IT IMPORTANT? Cross - connections are actual or potential physical connections between a public water system or the cus- tomer's water system and any source of non - potable liquid, solid or gas that could contaminate the potable water supply by backflow; backflow is flow that has reversed direction. An example of a residential cross - connection is an underground lawn irrigation system that uses domestic water for supply and is connected to that supply without any type of backflow prevention device installed. Questions, please call 575 -6154. KEY TO TABLES: HAA5 = Haloacetic Acids NTU = Nephelometric Turbidity Unit MCL = Maximum Contaminant Level ppm = parts per million < = Less Than MCLG = Maximum Contaminant Level Goal pp b= parts per billion > = More Than TTHM = Total Trihalomethanes pt = parts per trillion ND = Not Detected MDL = Method Detection Limit of current testing methods. Trigger = Drinking water response level. Systems with analytes detected at concentrations in excess of this level are re- quired to take additional samples. Explanation of the Water - Quality Tables The charts in this report provide representative analytical results, collected in 2011 from the City of Yakima water system. Please note the following definitions: Maximum Contaminant Level or MCL. The highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water MCL's are set as close to MCLG's as feasible using the best available treatment technology. Maximum Contaminant Level Goal or MCLG. The level of contaminant in drinking water below which there is no known or expected risk to health. MCLG's allow for a margin of safety. 2011. Page 3 EPA Regulated Inorganic Compounds EPA Regulated Inorganic Compounds ,1 .1. Compound MCL MCLG Detected (Secondary)' E Values in parts per million Compound MCL MCLG Detected .0 �'_ '� , Arsenic 0 01 0 0 <0 002* Values in parts per million u $" Cadmium 0 005 0 005 <0 0003* Iron 0.3 0.3 <0.0097* Chromium 0 1 0 1 <0.0047* Manganese 0 05 0 05 <0 002* 5 �° Mercury 0 002 0 002 <0.0003* Silver 0 1 0 1 <0.0047* " pRoz� °. Selenium 0 05 0 05 <0 005* Values in parts per million Beryllium 0 004 0 004 <0 0002* Chloride 250 250 4 7 What is a part Nickel 0 1 0 1 <0 010* Zinc 5 5 0 0105 per million? A Antimony 0 006 0 006 <0 005* Sulfate 250 250 2.59 Thalliurn 0 002 0 0005 <0 001* part per million Cyanide 0.2 0.2 <0 010* (ppm) is one Values in parts per million Secondary Inorganic Compounds are EPA Nitrite —N 1 1 <0.05* standards that relate to the aesthetic quality of pound of a Nitrate —N 10 10 <0 05* water, appearance, odor and taste substance Barium 2 2 0 002 detected in a * Denotes that the detected value is below the million pounds State Regulated Inorg Compounds minimum reporting level required by the of water Washington State Department of Health. Values in parts per million Another way to Compound Trigger MCL Detected a express part Lead 0 015 N/A <0.0005* Compounds Tested for, but NOT Regulated p p Copper 1 3 N/A < 002* Compound MCL Detected per million is Values in parts per million penny illion o out (sampled for at the water treatment plant effluent * p y and not in the distribution system) Sodium - 5 89 of $10,000. Hardness - 22.6 Value in color units Drinking water, including bottled water, may Color 15 <4 Turbidity, what reasonably be expected to contain at least State Regulated Physical Characteristics small amounts of some chemical compounds Value in Micromhos /cm at 25 Centigrade is it? and other substances. The presence of chemi- Conductivity ** 700 81.0 Turbidity is a cal compounds and other substances does * measure of the The EPA has established a recommended level of cloudiness of not necessarily indicate that water poses a twenty ppm for sodium as a level of concern for those health risk. More information about potential customers that may be restricted for daily sodium water. It is contaminants and possible health effects can intake. monitored be obtained by calling the Environmental Pro- "Conductivity testing is done in lieu of the more expen because it is an sive test for Total Dissolved Solids. Exceeding the tection Agency's Safe Drinking Water Hotline conductivity MCL would require that the City perform indicator of (800- 426 - 4791). the test for Total Dissolved Solids. water quality. Water Quality Data Table 1 Annual Contaminant Unit MCL MCLG Average Range Major Sources Violation Physical Characteristics - Clarity Turbidity NTU 1.0 - 0 03 0 02 - 0 09 Soil runoff No Disinfection Byproducts — HAA5 +TTHM Haloacetic Acids ppb 60 0 21.38 0 - 48.0 Disinfection Byproduct No Total Trihalomethanes ppb 80 0 26.1 0 - 55.8 Disinfection Byproduct No Microbioloc cal Contaminants Total Coliform Sample <5% 0 0 12% 0 - 100% Naturally present in environment No (The 0 12% annual average for Total Coliform indicates that one sample out of 840 collected during 2011 was positive.) 1 The data in this table is for analysis performed on Yakima's finished drinking water 2 Regulations require NTU's never exceed 1 0 units and 95% of all NTU samples will be less than or equal to 0.30 NTU during each calendar month. The 0.09 under Range is the maximum for 2011 3 A group of five Haloacetic Acids (HAA5) are sampled quarterly at four city locations. The four samples taken each quarter are averaged and the averages of each quarter are added and averaged for the year The 48.0 ppb under Range is the maximum detected in 2011 4 Total Trihalomethanes (TTHM's) are sampled quarterly at four city locations. The four samples taken each quarter are averaged and the averages of each quarter are added and averaged for the year The 55.8 ppb under Range is the maximum detected in 2011 5 Each year, 840 coliform samples from the distribution system are collected and analyzed. Of these only one was found to be positive. The water is then re- sampled along with an upstream and downstream location (in order to determine the extent of a problem, if any). Usually, these repeat samples indicate a "false positive" and this was the case in 2011. Page 4 WELLHEAD PROTECTION - PROGRAM The Washington State Department of Health requires a Wellhead Protection Program ' ,04, ' * to ensure protection of groundwater supplies. The City of Yakima complies with the ! `, Washington Department of Health Wellhead Protection Program and updates this pro - r '' gram on a bi- annual basis through the Upper Valley Regional Wellhead Protection Pro - I gram. For more information on the Wellhead Protection Program, please call 576 -6477 7 0" , ‘ A i t e ' it I) 44 CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS In 2011 we completed some water main improvements including improvements to our Federal Drug Admini- 48" transmission main that helps to protect against flood and to allow emergency bypassing of the river, continued with the elimination of dead -end water mains, stration, FDA, regula- completed a comprehensive 6 year Water System Plan update , and completed the tions establish limits construction of the Gardner Park Well for a new 4 3 million gallon per day additional for contaminants in source. In 2012 we will design an automated water metering reading system, design bottled water. new backwash water recycle lagoons and continue eliminating dead - end water mains ABOUT LEAD IN DRINKING WATER City of Yakima If present, elevated levels of lead can cause serious health problems, especially for Phone Numbers pregnant women and young children. Lead in drinking water is primarily from materials and components associated with service lines and home plumbing. The City of Water & Irrigation Yakima is responsible for providing high quality drinking water, but cannot control the 575 -6154 variety of materials used in plumbing components. When your water has been sitting for several hours, you can minimize the potential for lead exposure by flushing your tap Water Treatment Plant for 30 seconds to 2 minutes before using water for drinking or cooking. If you are 575 -6177 concerned about lead in your water, you may wish to have your water tested Information on lead in drinking water, testing methods, and steps you can take to Utility Services minimize exposure is available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline (800) 426— 4791, 575 -6080 or at http. / /www epa.gov /safewater /lead Water Quality WATER USE EFFICIENCY 576 -6477 In 2003, the Washington State Legislature passed the Municipal Water Law, to address the increasing demand on our state's water resources. The City Council, in a public Water Internet meeting on January 15, 2008, adopted the goals: 1) Reduce Distribution System Loss Sites to 10% or less by July 1, 2010, 2) Maintain the current residential per capita use (average water use per person per day). These goals and measures were reviewed EPA and reaffirmed in the 2011 Water System Plan update. WWW.EPA.GOV Washington State Dept. WATER AND HEALTH of Health Some people may be more vulnerable to certain chemical compounds and substances WWW.DOH.WA.GOV in drinking water than the general population Immuno- compromised persons such as persons with cancer undergoing chemotherapy, persons who have undergone organ American Water Works transplants, people with HIV /AIDS or other immune system disorders, some elderly, Association and infants can be particularly at risk from infections. These people should seek advice WWW.AWWA.ORG about drinking water from their health care providers. EPA and the Center for Disease Control guidelines on appropriate means to lessen the risk of infection by City of Yakima Cryptosporidium are available from the Safe Drinking Water Hotline (800 - 426 - 4791). WWW.CI.YAKIMA.WA.US FLUORIDE The Washington State Department of Health requires water systems that fluoridate to maintain a fluoride concentration in the range of 0 80 - 1 30 ppm throughout the s ystem. Yakima maintained an average of 0 91 ppm for 2011 In January .. of 2011, EPA issued guidance in association with U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to target a concentration of 0 7 ppm, and WSDOH is recommending a target of "•- •w•.v. w a :4W,. 0 8 ppm If WSDOH revises the range to a lower target, we will adjust as necessary Arnorkmn Wolof Works Association MEM9LR The City has been fluoridating the drinking water since April 2002. s 0 t ren d s 0 INSIGHT INTO THE LATEST SOCIAL, FINANCIAL AND POLITICAL MOVEMENTS SHAPING AMERICA'S COMMUNITIES • Local governments continue to cope with tight budgets p Officials do what they can to continue services with limited revenues s they start 2012, city we operate," Galambos says. "Except and county officials are for fire and police, our departments are hoping the U.S. economy run by private firms that compete for the will turn the corner contracts. This has saved us considerable toward a solid recovery. amounts " The city rebid its contracts this In the meantime, they are past June, with the savings amounting exploring new revenue sources, expanding to $7 million over the next five years. partnerships with the private sector, trimming The 3,143 counties in the U.S. also are budgets, and taking other steps to keep scaling back or deferring spending to balance expenses in line with fiscal realities. their budgets, according to the National According to the latest "City Fiscal Association of Counties (NACo) report, Conditions Survey" from the Washington - "Coping with the New Normal: An Economic based National League of Cities (NLC), Status. Survey of Counties," released in released in October, city finance officers October. A total of 233 counties, representing expect general city revenues will continue 38 states, responded to the survey, and 51 to fall. This is the fifth percent reported that declining revenues from straight year of declines the state and federal government was the No. 1 in revenue for cities, contributor to their county's budget shortfalls. according to the survey. Counties are using rainy day funds, ' City officials are imposing hiring freezes and freezing pay, and responding by cutting adjusting personnel to address their shortfalls. personnel (72 percent), They also are delaying purchases, repairs delaying infrastructure and capital investments, as well. Meanwhile, projects (60 percent) and about half (49 percent) of responding increasing service fees counties report that cities have contracted (41 percent). One in three with them to perform some services, such (36 percent) cities report as law enforcement and tax billing. modifying employee The cuts in personnel and the delaying ' health care benefits. of infrastructure projects are prudent and To keep its budget responsible actions by local officials," says under control, Sandy Donald Borut, NLC executive director. "City Springs, Ga., uses public - officials are making difficult decisions and private partnerships for are working hard to find innovative solutions many city functions, says to reenergize their communities. But without Mayor Eva Galambos. more resources and more cooperation, the "We have been able outlook will continue to be challenging." to maintain our high level of public services Michael Keating is senior editor for Govpro. com because of the public and Government Product News and contributing private partnership editor forAinerican City d; County. He can be model under which reached at michael..keating@penton.com. 8 January 2012 I www.americancityandcounty.com L y . \ . . � � � ' y ~ a q / . � . »w � w ©� . � 1 Incianapolis fights to eliminate abanconed ,' homes that are more than just eyesores y 4 F 4. etween 2000 and 2010, about 3 million buildings 1 i ' were added to the nation's list of vacant properties. "0,1-% That represents a 51 percent increase, with 10 is states seeing increases of 70 percent or more. Such decay is costing cash - strapped cities money. __..4 ` A November 2011 Government Accountability Office report found that Detroit has spent $20 million since May 2009 to demolish 4,000 vacant properties, and the report also showed that Chicago spent $15 million last year alone. Vacant properties also have led to high - profile lawsuits against building owners and bad press for the cities that fail to address the problem. For example, the family of deceased Chicago firefighter Edward Stringer has filed a lawsuit against the owner of the vacant building where Stringer died in December 2010 searching for people. The building had been vacant for five years, and its owner was cited 13 times by the city for non - compliance of code regulations. Aiming to prevent similar incidents in Indianapolis, the city has been on a mission to force property owners to keep homes up to code, and if they refuse, to raze abandoned buildings. The work I has been costly, but city officials believe the expense is worth e eliminating the threats to neighbors and public safety personnel that abandoned structures present. THE (n LI \RTLIT1E Between 9,000 and 10,000 abandoned properties are within the Indianapolis city limits, and each has the potential for a slew of problems from sheltering criminals to massive fires, says Reginald Walton, administrator of the Indianapolis Abandoned and Unsafe Buildings Program. Arson is the core threat, whether intentional or accidental, he says. Often, squatters go into the homes and set a blaze to stay warm, to cook food, or they may spark a fire by using power tools to strip copper out of the house. "It puts a lot of our sworn officers and firefighters in harm's way," Walton says. About 90 percent of the city's vacant property fires are arsons, says Robin Nicoson, Indianapolis V 5-'''''' Fire Department's chief of safety. "Some of these vacants are totally engulfed when we get on the scene, and that's where our incident commanders t need to weigh the risk and the benefit," he says. "But if there are people inside, firefighters are still doing primary searches, and it gives us a chance to get more people injured." = Once the fire department leaves the scene, the building remains life threatening, and the city could be held liable for any accidents that occur afterward, www.americancityandcounty.com I January 2012 23 Heads Up Emerging information for local government By Lynne De Merritt, Senior Research Consultant, Municipal Research and Services Center Underage Drinking foam Containers" at http: / /www.mrsc. and 100 businesses; complete energy According to the U.S. Surgeon Gen- org/ subjects /legal /nuisances /nu- litter. upgrades in 2,000 homes and 25 eral, alcohol is the most widely -used aspx #Plastic. businesses, resulting in more than 15 substance of abuse among America's percent energy savings in each home youth and is a major public health Fundraising and Donations Update or business; create up to 65 jobs in problem. The publication, The Surgeon The spring 2011 "Heads Up" column the clean - energy industry; and reduce General's Call to Action to Prevent and provided some examples of cities approximately 7,000 metric tons of Reduce Underage Drinking, recom- requesting community donations for greenhouse gas emissions. In col - mends steps that may be taken by programs threatened by cutbacks. laboration with Puget Power, a Smart communities to help reduce under- One example was Mercer Island's Power Program and an island -wide age drinking. In December, Mercer Parks and Recreation Department. energy dashboard were developed. Island passed an ordinance addressing They placed a "help save community See http: / /www.grist.org, http: // underage drinking that went into effect recreation programs and events" plea repowerbainbridge.org, http: / /repower- January 13, 2012. Often referred to and a donation button on its Parks bremerton, and http: / /repowerkitsap.org. as a "social host ordinance," this type and Recreation webpage, along with a of ordinance creates civil liability for link to the press release explaining the Update on Volunteerism property owners who either allow, or need. In the December 14, 2011 issue In the summer 2010 edition of Munici- turn a blind eye to, underage drink- of MI Weekly http: / /archive.constant- pal Research News, we devoted this ing parties. This type of ordinance contact .com /fs031/1103777415492/ column to volunteerism and provided has been found effective in creating a archive /1108956567955.html, the 2009 statistics on Washington State safer environment for youth by reduc- city reported its success in obtaining citizen volunteerism from the Corpo- ing the number of gatherings where community support. With donations ration for National and Community unsafe behaviors, like binge drinking, and grants from the Mercer Island Service. The 2010 data for Washing - typically occur. For more informa- Community Fund, Cascade Kendo Kai, ton is now available. Using 2008 to tion, see the article in the December Friends of Luther Burbank Park, Lion's 2010 data and based on an average, 14, 2011 issue of MI Weekly titled Club, Kiwanis Club, Rotary Club, Wom- Washington State had 1.7 million "Underage Drinking Ordinance Goes en's Club, Pre - School Association, and volunteers. This means 33.7 percent of into Effect January 13." The article many private donations from Islanders, our state's residents volunteer, ranking contains a link to the ordinance. the community saved the Adventure the state 11th among the 50 states See http: / /archive.constantcontact. Playground, Egg Hunt, Community and Washington, DC. Washington com/fs031/1103777415492/ar- Camp Out, and Fun Mobile. volunteers have provided 218.9 million chive/1108956567955.html and hours of service, which equals 42.2 http: / /www.surgeongeneral.gov /topics/ RePower Bainbridge hours per resident and ranks the state underagedrinking /index.html. An article titled "A magical meter and 9th among the 50 states and Wash - friendly competition help one commu- ington, DC. The value of the service is Plastic Bags Update nity dial back energy use" relates the $4.7 billion. For more information, see Four Washington cities have now story of a Bainbridge Island commu- "Volunteering in Washington" at http: // restricted the use of single, carry- nity effort to monitor and cut back on www.volunteeringinamerica.gov/WA.* out plastic bags. Edmonds was first electricity usage rather than having and passed its ordinance in 2008. Puget Power build a new substation. Bellingham, Mukilteo, and Seattle Under the banner of Repower Bain - passed ordinances this year. The city bridge, a coalition of local residents, of Bellingham passed Ordinance No. organizations, and government officials 2011 -07 -034 in July; Mukilteo passed set out to cut the island's electricity Ordinance No. 1294 on December 12, use. The RePower organization, along 2011; and the city of Seattle Council with RePower Bremerton and RePower Bill No. 117345 on December 19, Kitsap, are all partners of the U.S. 2011. This was the second attempt for Department of Energy's Better Build - Seattle. Its first ordinance was rejected ings Neighborhood Program. RePower in a city -wide referendum in 2009. Bainbridge was launched by Positive Links to the ordinances and other Energy: Bainbridge Alliance for Clean information may be found on MRSC's Energy. Its goals are to complete energy website under "Plastic Bags and Styro- assessments in at least 4,000 homes Municipal Research Newa a Winter 2012 2011 Local Ballot Box Recap In 2011, MRSC started tracking results voters in 30 counties. Sixty -seven term limits for the mayor and council; of local government ballot measures. measures passed and 43 failed, for Tukwila residents wanted the city to We will be tracking election results an overall success rate of 61 percent. continue to allow gambling in the annually to provide information on There were 83 funding measures, 51 form of card rooms; Olympia voters trends and to share success stories that passed and 32 failed — again, a 61 wanted to restrict fireworks; Colville may be helpful to local governments percent success rate. residents did not want to relocate the that may be considering seeking voter airport; and Tacoma voters approved of support for local funding measures. The local proposals reflect the variety making marijuana offenses the lowest of issues facing local governments enforcement priority. A Diversity of Issues and an today. To give you the flavor of the Overall 61 Percent Success Rate diversity of measures: Seattle renewed The table includes a summary of the funding to fund city services related results by type of ballot measure. This past November, 110 local to families and education support; government measures were put before Monroe voters were in favor of setting Local Government Election Recap: How the Measures Fared All Measures Number of Special Total District Number of Number Number of Number of Number of (SPD) City & Town of County Measures Measures % Passage Measures Measures Measures Measures Passed Failed Rate Measures to Fund Parks and Recreation Measures to Fund EMS Services Measures to Fund Fire Services Measures to Fund Transportation Improvements Measures to Fund Criminal Justice and Public Safety Measures to Fund Cemetery Districts Municipel Research News - Winter 2012 . 9