Call To Order:
Mayor Jim Pearman called the meeting to order at 6:05 pm in the Council Chambers of City Hall, 9611 SE 36th Street, Mercer Island, Washington.
Councilmembers Bruce Bassett, Mike Cero, Mike Grady, Steve Litzow and Mayor Jim Pearman were present. Councilmember Dan Grausz and Deputy Mayor El Jahncke were absent.
(1) AB 4395 Shoreline Master Program Joint Study Session with Planning Commission
The following members of the Planning Commission: Marc Berejka, Dave Chappelle, Adam Cooper, Jon Friedman, Steve Marshall, Kirsten White, joined the City Council and staff for a presentation from The Watershed Company (consultants) on the Mercer Island Shoreline Master Program update.
The consultants explained the first steps of the update process are to inventory and characterize the City’s shorelines as defined by the state’s Shoreline Management Act. This assessment of existing conditions, ecological functions and ecosystem-wide processes will serve as the baseline against which the impacts of future development actions in the shoreline will be measured and help inform the selection of appropriate development requirements.
The Study Session adjourned at 6:58 pm. The Regular Meeting began at 7:07 pm
Mayor Pearman announced that Robert Kramp was named the Police Officer of the Year, Sgt. Marc Marcroft was named Police Supervisor of the Year and Kim Druktenis was named Police Support Employee of the Year.
Maretta Holden, 8221 SE 24th Street, spoke about the litter situation 80th Avenue SE over the freeway as there are no trash receptacles. She also thinks it is important to figure out of rules of the road for bicycles and pay attention to how the bicycles are supposed to interact with vehicles and pedestrians.
Ira Appelman, 6213 83rd Place SE, spoke about the Island Crest Way/Merrimount intersection reconfiguration process. He believes that the citizen’s panel was not impartial. He also spoke about density housing in single-family neighborhoods and the City’s interactions with Futurewise and the utility. He also spoke about executive sessions, the Open Public Meetings Act and the process for disciplining a public employee. He insisted that Islander’s business be conducted in an open and honest manner.
Steve Bryan, 2426 70th Ave SE, thanked the Council for televising Council meetings. He believes that Island Crest Way works well now and her looks forward to the current configuration becoming permanent.
(2) It was moved by Councilmember Litzow; seconded by Councilmember Grady to:
Approve the Regular Meeting Minutes of February 17, 2009 as written.
Motion passed 5-0.
(3) It was moved by Councilmember Litzow; seconded by Councilmember Grady to:
Approve the 2009 Annual Planning Session Minutes of January 23-25, 2009 as written.
It was moved by Councilmember Cero; seconded by Councilmember Grady to:
Amend the main motion to add language to the last paragraph of page 4 as follows:
“Councilmembers Jahncke, Cero and Grady inquired about the school district’s long-term educational vision for the schools. Councilmember Cero emphasized that Capital projects, in order to garner public support, should be in support of a District Educational strategy, a strategy accepted by the community and the plan should precede the Capital Discussions.”
Motion passed 5-0.
It was moved by Councilmember Cero; seconded by Councilmember Bassett to:
Amend the main motion to add language to the third paragraph of Page 5 as follows:
“…In closing, the City Manager said he would go forward negotiating an agreement with the B&G and, at Councilmember Litzow’s suggestion; he would bring back periodic progress reports. Councilmember Cero referenced the Exhibit 1 (Draft Joint Use Agreement) of AB 3828 (Boy & Girls Club Share Use Agreement) as an example of a quid pro quo example.”
Motion passed 5-0.
Main motion passed 5-0.
(4) Payables: $523,062.52 Payroll: $571,401.99
(5) AB 4400 2009 Water System Improvements Project Bid Award
Motion: Award the 2009 Water System Improvements Project – 72nd Avenue SE: SE 24th Street to SE 32nd Street to Earthwork Enterprises in the amount of $480,160. Authorize staff to administer the contract and set the project budget at $695,960.
(6) AB 4396 2008 76th Avenue SE Improvements Project Acceptance
Motion: Accept the completed 76th Avenue SE Improvements project and authorize staff to close out the contract.
It was moved by Councilmember Grady; seconded by Councilmember Litzow to:
Approve the Consent Calendar and the recommendations contained therein.
Motion passed 5-0.
(7) AB 4397 Planning Commission 2009 Work Program
Principal Planner George Steirer presented the Planning Commission’s 2009 Work Plan. He detailed the mandatory programs the Planning Commission must address as well as the discretionary work proposed.
It was moved by Councilmember Bassett; seconded by Councilmember Litzow to:
Accept the Planning Commission prioritized discretionary items within proposed 2009 Planning Commission Work Plan.
It was moved by Councilmember Cero; seconded by Councilmember Litzow to:
Reduce staff hours for the Shoreline Management Program Update from 2000 to 1500.
It was moved by Councilmember Litzow; seconded by Councilmember Grady to:
Table AB 4397 (and the previous motions) and move it to the March 16th City Council Meeting.
Motion passed 5-0.
(8) AB 4398 Open Space Conservancy Trust 2008 Annual Report and 2009 Work Plan
Parks Natural Resource Coordinator Paul West introduced Open Space Conservancy Trust Chair Don Cohen who presented the Trust’s 2008 Annual Report and the proposed work plan for 2009. Chair Cohen spoke about the Trust’s three main goals for Pioneer Park: to make to healthy, to make it better funded and make it known. He explained how the trust will be focusing its work in 2009 on education and outreach, by embarking on a pilot wayfinding and interpretation project which will make Pioneer Park friendlier and more meaningful for park users. He also detailed how the Trust will be working on adopting herbicide use protocols in advance of future project work that could possibly expand the role of herbicides in forest management.
Councilmember Litzow requested that staff hours be added to the 2009 Work Plan. Staff responded that the data will be brought back to the Council at a future meeting.
(9) AB 4401 Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities Plan Update
Development Service Director Steve Lancaster and consultant Pat Dugan addressed the most prominent potential policy issues in the draft Pedestrian and Bicycle Facilities Plan of:
improvements on the Mercer Ways
parking on shoulders and on the Mercer Ways
vegetation management alterations
mitigating behavioral issues through signage, public education and enhanced enforcement
shared streets concept.
Steve Bryan, 2426 70th Ave SE, encourages the use of sharrows on Mercer Island, the removal of the turtles that designate the road from bike/pedestrian lane and if changes are going to be made to road surfaces, ensure that the surface is bike-friendly.
Maretta Holden, 8221 SE 24th Street, feels the fundamental problem is the wide variance in the speed and character of the things that are competing for the same space. She would like the plan to address ways that people can walk and not be run over by something mechanical.
There was consensus from the Council to complete clockwise shoulder improvements and promote clockwise direction for bicycles on East & West Mercer Way as well as support for vegetation management, public education and enforcement, and shared streets concepts.
The Council gave direction to staff to further review:
Using sharrows (markings that indicate a shared lane for bicyclists) in one or both directions on East & West Mercer Way
Discreet zones on West Mercer Way where time of day prohibitions on parking would be instituted with exceptions for inclement weather.
Signage for bicycles to ride on either North Mercer Way or the I-90 path from Covenant Shores to Luther Burbank Park and the bicycle route around the park-and-ride.
Signage for packs of cyclists.
Wayfaring pedestrian signage (showing length of walk to a destination)
Councilmember Grausz’ absence was excused.
Deputy Mayor Jahncke’s absence was excused.
Mayor Pearman will be absent from the March 16, 2009 meeting.
City Manager Conrad handed out the final version of the 2009 Council Work Plan (attached).
There were no appointments.
Councilmember Grady reported developing a regional package for money from the federal stimulus plan.
Mayor Pearman reported on a meeting in Olympia with the Governor’s Office regarding HB 2211 on tolling SR-520, the consensus was that there is little to no interest from the Governor’s staff and the legislature to toll I-90.
Councilmember Cero spoke about the vote that will be taken at the next Suburban Cities Association meeting regarding early tolling of SR-520 and I-90.
Councilmember Cero reported that the Senior Commission looking for new members, 55 years and older.
The City Council, City Attorney Katie Knight, City Manager Rich Conrad, Finance Director Chip Corder, Development Services Director Steve Lancaster, Human Resources Director and Interim Deputy City Manager Manny Ocampo convened to Executive Session at 9:33 pm to discuss a collective bargaining agreement pursuant to RCW 42.30.140(4) and property acquisition RCW 42.30.110(1)(b) for approximately 30 minutes.
At 10:03 pm Mayor Pearman extended the Executive Session for an additional 15 minutes.
The Executive Session was adjourned at 10:18 pm and the Regular Meeting was reconvened.
Adjournment: 10:18 pm