News

Sequim City Council roundup

by MATTHEW NASH
Sequim Gazette

Transportation Benefit District
The Sequim Transportation Benefit District, consisting of all members of the Sequim City Council, named three projects as its top investment priorities in 2011.

The district approved partnering with the City of Sequim to help fund up to $100,000 of the following projects
• Install sidewalks from Washington Street to Fir Street along Third Avenue
• Install a traffic signal on Fir Street and North Sequim Avenue
• Install Americans with Disabilities Act compliant curb ramps and driveways required with  street overlays

Bill Huizinga, city councilor and board member, said the proposed Third Avenue sidewalk has been pushed aside for seven years.

 

“Every year, money has been put somewhere else,” he said.

 

Paul Haines, city public works director, said that in 2010 city staff applied for a grant to start the project but it didn’t compete well. The proposed curb ramps would be in support of $300,000 of street overlays and chip seals being installed this summer from monies available through the city’s water and sewer utilities to repair roads that show signs of distress or failure due to the installation and repair of pipelines.

Several other projects were listed, including changing streetlights to LEDs, upgrading street signs and painting bike lanes.

 

Burkett said that staff would come back with clear price estimates for each project at a later date.

 


Police station lease renewed

A lease for the Sequim Police station at Sequim Village Shopping Center, 609 W. Washington St., in Suite 16, was agreed upon Monday night with the McNish Family Trust, LLC. The new lease runs March 1, 2011, to Feb. 28, 2016, with options to renew for five more years and a renegotiated rent.

 

Monthly rent payments increase to about $4,545 per month, about a $980 change, to reflect increased value and remodeling done by the landlords. Sequim Police have used the site since 1985; it now has a new interrogation room, a new front counter window, new carpeting and paint.

 


Planning Commission
Councilors decided against reducing the planning commission board seats to five due to difficulty filling vacancies. They unanimously approved keeping it at seven people while increasing the number of members from two to three from outside the city limits and within Sequim School District boundaries.
Ted Miller, city councilor, said he was strongly opposed to reducing membership and that the city wasn’t
being proactive enough
with recruitment.

City manager increase

City Manager Steve Burkett was approved for a nonsalary compensation increase to his benefits package because of a positive review last year. Councilors voted 6-1, with Don Hall voting no.

 

On March 1, Burkett is to receive one additional week of vacation, making six weeks; 5 percent of his annual salary contributed by the City of Sequim to a deferred compensation account; and a $50 per month increase in his car allowance from $350-$400. Burkett’s base pay won’t increase from his current salary of $120,000 a year.

 

Hall voted no because he felt it wasn’t appropriate with the poor economic climate and other managers locally not having pay increases.

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