Dear Bainbridge Islanders,
This week I want to highlight a few of the community partners the City works with on projects large and small.
You have likely noticed that there is a display case in the City Hall lobby, which is curated by the Bainbridge Island Historical Museum (BIHM). Each year, the BIHM installs a new exhibit that highlights part of our Island story. The 2019 exhibit is now in place, and covers some interesting history and facts related to Puget Sound orcas, their connection to indigenous peoples and changes in research over the years. Thanks to BIHM's Rick Chandler for yet another educational and colorful display.
Speaking of whales, this coming Sunday, March 10, the Association of Bainbridge Communities (ABC) will host its 16th environmental conference and this year's topic is "Wells to Whales: Protecting our Water." The City is a co-sponsor for this event, which (among other topics) will include discussion panels and tours led by City staff to learn more about Winslow-area outfalls and the City's Wastewater Treatment Plant. Please see below for more details.
Finally, I attended the Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet last weekend with Mayor Kol Medina, Deputy Mayor Leslie Schneider, and Councilmember Matt Tirman. The evening culminated in the announcement that Reed Price, Executive Director of the Bainbridge Island Senior Community Center, had been selected as the Chamber's 2019 Citizen of the Year. Reed has led the BISCC through some significant organizational changes and works closely with the City to manage the City-owned building where BISCC activities and other community events are hosted. Congratulations to Reed, I'm looking forward to seeing him lead the annual Fourth of July parade.
Remember to turn your clocks forward early on Sunday morning, when we start Daylight Savings Time again. There is a growing West Coast discussion about whether to adopt a permanent daylight savings time in our region. For the time being, we will at least be able to enjoy this shift to later daylight for the next seven months.
Public Works crews to begin flushing of water mains next week
Public Works crews will begin flushing water mains in the Winslow and Fletcher Bay areas on Monday, March 11. This is annual work that is done to improve water quality by removing naturally-occurring sediments from the lines.
Signs will be posted in neighborhoods prior to flushing. If customers experience low water pressure or discolored water during flushing operations, they are advised to avoid running water or doing laundry for one hour. After one hour has passed, customers should run cold water for approximately five minutes until it's clear. The City anticipates the annual flushing process to be completed within approximately two months.
For more information, please contact the City of Bainbridge Island Public Works Operations & Maintenance Division at 206.842.1212 or send an email.
Kitsap County: Expect long lines at garbage and recycling facility this weekend
The Kitsap County Solid Waste Division is warning people to expect long lines this weekend at the Olympic View Transfer Station - or postpone your garbage dump and recycling run if possible.
Contractors are doing floor repairs at the garbage and recycling facility, near the Bremerton airport, and have one final step before the project is complete. On Saturday, March 9 and Sunday, March 10, a large part of the tipping floor will be unavailable for garbage. There is extra staff to move cars into he building, but they expect long lines and wait times. Read more here.
City Council to consider six-month extension of development moratorium
The temporary development moratorium is set to expire April 8, but it's likely the City Council will extend it six months to allow staff more time to complete the work plan. During this week's Study Session, the Council requested that staff work on an ordinance to extend the moratorium by six months. It's anticipated that a public hearing will be held March 26 to provide the community an opportunity to share thoughts on this proposed extension.
The Council passed the temporary moratorium in January 2018 and it has been extended several times.
As part of the moratorium work plan, progress is being made on subdivision regulations, which includes three components: new review procedures, new design guidelines and revised standards.
Following a public hearing last month on
made a recommendation to the Council on updates to the subdivision design guidelines and standards. Key changes include new subdivision design guidelines, requirements for both natural area and community space designation, and an emphasis on cluster development. Changes focus on implementing fundamental goals and policies of the City's Comprehensive Plan, including limiting the development footprint and loss of native vegetation and soils, preserving island character, and promoting a diversity of housing types.
Learn more about the moratorium work plan here.
On the agenda: City Council to discuss sandwich board sign policy next week
They're not hard to miss - sandwich board signs, often advertising businesses and events, line Winslow Way to attract passersby, but what should be done about it (if anything)? The City Council will start a discussion about these signs during the March 12 meeting as part of a sign code update process.
The sign code update is in response to recent court rulings that state a sign code cannot regulate noncommercial signs based on the message conveyed on the sign (e.g., political signs, ideological signs, event signs, etc.). City Council directed staff to review the City's code to make sure it's compliant with the recent court decisions.
As part of the future sandwich board discussion, there also will be a Planning Commission study session to review feedback from the public and to consider different approaches for sandwich board signs. There will be more information available in the March 12 City Council agenda when it's released later today. You can also read the current sign code
Car-tab fee increase to begin August 1
The car-tab fee increase approved by City Council is set to take effect beginning August 1.
In January, City Council voted to increase the car-tab fees from $20 to $30 to s
upport traffic calming measures, climate change mitigation and marketing of Kitsap Transit's BI Ride Service.
The increase will add approximately $200,000 per year to the City's Transportation Benefit Fund, but will be less in 2019 due to the mid-year start of the new fee. The Washington State Department of Licensing requires a six-month lead time for new fee implementation.
It's possible, however, the City's Transportation Benefit car-tab fees may not take effect. If State Legislators pass Initiative 976, which would reduce car-tab fees to $30, it would repeal the Transportation Benefit District's authority to impose additional vehicle-registration fees.
Join the discussion: Water resources focus of environmental conference
Participants will explore issues of sustainability of water quality and quantity, and examine science, impact and infrastructure in local and global systems. As part of the workshop series, COBI's Stella Collier, a Stormwater Permit Manager, will lead a session on the effects of stormwater pollution and how it can be prevented.
"I'm excited about the opportunity to engage with the community and work together on solutions for restoring our precious water resources that will benefit us and future generations," said Stella Collier.
Some of the other workshop topics include effects of consumer product chemicals, the state of our watersheds, and groundwater management. There will also be pre-event tours of City facilities on Saturday, but a
s of Thursday afternoon the tours were sold out. Register
for Sunday's main event.
Get Informed: Sign up for City Council agenda notifications
Did you know that you can watch the City Council meetings from home or on the go? The meetings are livestreamed on the City website. Visit the Agendas & Minutes section, then click on "In Progress" when the meeting starts. You can also watch the meetings on BKAT (Ch. 12 on Comcast & Ch. 3 on WAVE).
Also, you can get the City Council agenda every week when it's published. Sign up for Notify Me on the City's website and select "City Council Meeting Notifications." You can get the updates by text or email.
You're invited: WSDOT to host open house on SR 305 safety improvements
WSDOT is hosting an open house at City Hall Wednesday, April 10 to update people about the
safety improvements planned along SR 305 from the Bainbridge ferry terminal to Hostmark Street in Poulsbo.
The project will include roundabouts at several major intersections along the corridor.
Read more about the project
The open house is scheduled 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Council Chambers.
COBI's mayor, staff member earn top honors at bike competition
Congratulations to Mayor Kol Medina and Mapping Specialist Gretchen Brown who earned top honors Sunday at the West Side Mountain Bike Series competition on Whidbey Island.
Gretchen earned first place in her division and Kol won second place in his division. Nice work!