City News You Can Use. 

News from City Hall 
Dear Bainbridge Islanders,

At the business meeting on Tuesday, I provided City Council with a midyear update on the Citywide workplan priorities for this year.  This workplan includes a wide-ranging list of items we are highlighting for 2019, all of which are happening alongside the City's "regular" ongoing service delivery.  I encourage you to review our workplan reporting, since it is a great way to gain perspective on key tasks for this year that are new or complex, or that have particular significance for the community.

Click here to learn more and view our midyear reports. 

Our progress so far this year is very good.  Across the organization, a majority of the City's 2019 workplan priorities are on track or continuing with a manageable level of disruption/delay.  Several items have experienced some degree of delay ("Some Disruption") but are continuing towards completion. Only a very few tasks have been deferred at this time due to capacity or other issues ("Major Disruption").  

I am pleased with the City's progress given the scale of our organization and the fact that our workplan is ambitious by design.  I think these results indicate that the City is moving forward in a number of significant areas, and I hope you agree.  If you have any suggestions about these reports, please let me know.  I am always interested in hearing ideas about how to make this reporting more useful and readable.

At the business meeting this week, the Council continued discussion on changes related to Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs), tiny homes and RVs, new rules for subdivisions, the administrative review of the Critical Areas Ordinance (CAO), the City's upcoming funding cycle for cultural activities in 2020-2021, and potential changes to the Ethics Program.

Next week, there is no Council meeting scheduled. Given which, I will not be sending a weekly email message next Friday. Looking ahead to the Council's study session on August 6, the Council will discuss plans for the Suzuki property affordable housing project, goals for the Sustainable Transportation Plan, proposed changes to the Ethics Program, and will receive a briefing from the Climate Change Advisory Committee on their approach to develop a Climate Action Plan.

Best wishes,

Morgan Smith
City Manager
Planning Commission recommends denial of Winslow Hotel project

During the July 25 meeting, the Planning Commission unanimously recommended denial of the application for a Major Conditional Use Permit (CUP) and Major Site Plan and Design Review (SPR) for the Winslow Hotel proposal due, in part, to inconsistencies with the Comprehensive Plan and Winslow Master Plan goals and policies. In addition, the Planning Commission found no reasonable conditions could be imposed on the project, as proposed, that would satisfy the decision criteria. The Planning Commission lists reasons for the denial in a 16-page Findings of Fact and Conclusions document.
The proposal will now be reviewed by Interim Planning & Community Development Director Heather Wright. The director's recommendation will be provided to the Hearing Examiner, who will make the final decision on the proposal. The hearing date has not been set. 

Prior to the hearing, the City will also issue a State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) threshold determination which addresses any adverse environmental impacts.
Construction Alert: Olympic Drive

Beginning Saturday, July 27, and continuing for several weeks, an additional police officer will help direct traffic at Harborview Drive & Olympic Drive during weekend afternoons and early evenings for summer peak pedestrian and vehicle traffic. 

We hope this will alleviate some of the confusion for people traveling near the Olympic Drive construction project site.

In addition, crews will be doing utility work in support of the Olympic Drive project and need to shut off water service in the area at 10 p.m. on Tuesday, August 6 to 6 a.m. on Wednesday, August 7. Once completed, customers are advised to run cold water until it clears. Traffic flaggers will be directing traffic for any lane closures throughout the night work. A postcard will be mailed to customers affected by the water shut off. 

Thank you for your patience during this important work.
City begins search for new Police Chief

The City will soon begin the search for a new Police Chief.

The position became vacant in February when Police Chief Matt Hamner resigned. Deputy Chief Jeff Horn was appointed Interim Police Chief and will continue to serve in that role until a replacement Police Chief is hired. At that time, Chief Horn will resume his role as Deputy Chief for the department.

"I am extremely appreciative of the additional effort and commitment Chief Horn has shown during this period of transition. His leadership within the department and his outreach to the broader community have both been significant during these past few months," said City Manager Morgan Smith.

The City will work with Strategic Government Resources (SGR) to lead the nationwide search.  SGR specializes in public sector executive recruitment. The City expects to post the position in early August and seeks to have the hiring process completed by the end of the year.

"Our Police Department has built a strong level of community engagement over the past five years, and during that time also met a key organizational goal in achieving State accreditation. We are seeking a candidate to help the department continue its emphasis on professionalism and community dialogue," said Smith. "The City is making significant investments in the department through the completion of the new Police Station and Municipal Court Replacement project and increased department staffing. Our hiring process for the next Police Chief will be another important milestone."
Kitsap Public Health closes shellfish harvesting for some Bainbridge areas

Kitsap Public Health, in conjunction with the  Washington State Department of Health, has closed recreational shellfish harvesting on the eastern and northern shoreline of Bainbridge Island, north of Eagle Harbor, and in the Port Madison/Indianola area until Friday, August 9 in response to the West Point Treatment Plant sewage overflow in Seattle.

All recreational shellfish harvesting for all species of clams, oysters, and mussels are included in the closure.  Shrimp and crab are not included in this closure, but crabs should be cleaned prior to cooking, and the "crab butter" should be discarded. Shellfish harvested commercially that are available in stores and restaurants are tested for toxins prior to distribution, and are safe to eat, according to Kitsap Public Health.

Click here for more details on the the Kitsap Public Health's advisory.
Council continues discussion on ADUs, tiny homes

During the July 23 business meeting, the City Council continued discussion on Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs). The Council confirmed that the City should work to make the following code changes:

  • New ADUs will not be sold separately from the primary single-family dwelling.
  • In Residential zones, the City should create a process for tiny homes and recreational vehicles (RVs) to be considered permanent residences, and they could be allowed as types of ADUs. A property could also have a tiny home or RV serve as the primary dwelling on a property.
  • A property could have two tiny homes or RVs serving as ADUs, in contrast with allowing only one traditionally-sized ADU.
  • For properties less than 400,000 square feet in size (just under an acre), ADUs won't count towards a property's lot coverage limit.
The Council will continue discussion on this topic at the August 13 business meeting and will focus on discussion about a llowing RVs as permanent residences and t iny home communities
Ultimately, policy direction from the Council will be integrated into a draft ordinance that will be reviewed by the Planning Commission. Click here to watch the July 23 discussion.
Council updates subdivision code, sets public hearing

The City Council continued discussion related to the subdivision update during the July 23 business meeting and directed staff to make several changes to the current draft Ordinance 2019-03, including:
  • Classifying freestanding landmark trees as secondary natural areas rather than primary.
    • Background: There are two types of natural areas in the code: primary (critical areas) & secondary (noteworthy or significant features of the natural landscape)
  • Allow split-rail fencing along the perimeter of subdivisions
  • Clarifying how aquifer recharge protection areas (ARPAs) are designated in subdivisions. 
    • APRAs require up to 65 percent of the native vegetation to be preserved, but the primary natural area (PNA) requirements are less than 65 percent. Currently, ARPAs are included as part of the primary natural area. Due to the difference in the PNA and ARPA requirements, it was suggested that APRAs be removed from the primary natural areas and handled separately.
  • Specifying that bus shelters be allowed in roadside buffers
The City Council also requested that there be no maximum homesite size requirement in the R-0.4 and R-1 zoning districts but requested further analysis regarding the overall role of homesites in the subdivision update. 

The Council will hold a public hearing on the subdivision update (Ordinance 2019-03) during the August 27 business meeting. Click here to watch the July 23 discussion.
New public art installed in Winslow

If you've walked around Winslow this week, you might have noticed new public art. The second round of artwork for the Something New exhibit was recently installed and a celebration is planned for next week's August 2 First Friday Art Walk.

The Public Art Committee (PAC), Arts & Humanities Bainbridge (AHB) , and the City are all part of this collaborative effort. 
The two sculptures chosen for this project include:
  •  "Stargazer" by Timm Duffy (pictured on left) which was installed along Winslow Way near Ericksen Avenue (in front of T&C).  Duffy's piece, "Stargazer" is based on a neighbor in Boulder, Colorado who would "look at the stars as they came out every night in the summer."
  •  "Daphne" by Karsten Boysen (on right), which was  installed in the harbor-side plaza at the southern end of Madison Avenue. Boysen has created an abstract rendition of the Greek myth of Daphne being pursued by Apollo by changing it into a laurel tree as a metaphor for spring.
The official unveiling is scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday, August 2. PAC members and volunteers will guide community members on a walking tour of the new pieces. Sculptors will be on-hand at each site to present their artwork. A ride will be available for those not inclined to walk the tour route. The tour will start from a station on Winslow Way between Columbia Bank and Chase Bank. 

A jury of PAC-nominated community members selected the chosen pieces in this project from a pool of about 30 submissions. 

Click here to listen to a recent podcast Boysen and PAC members to learn more about the Something New program and new installations.
National Night Out returns to Waterfront Park

National Night Out returns to Waterfront Park Tuesday, August 6 for a family-friendly evening filled with lots of activities, free hot dogs and ice cream, and more.

The event is held every year to encourage and promote positive relationships between police and the community.

To help celebrate BIPD's 10th anniversary of NNO, there will be an inflatable dry slide and obstacle course, a BI Fire Department zone with an engine, medic unit, boat, and tender. And, as part of the Fire Zone, kids will have the opportunity to shoot water from a fire hose into Eagle Harbor. At some point during the 5 - 8 p.m. event, the United States Coast Guard will be flying into Eagle Harbor to do a helicopter-rescue swimmer demonstration.

We hope to see you there!
New podcast addresses affordable housing, landmark tree ordinance

We continued our podcast series this month with Bainbridge Community Broadcasting (BCB) to discuss affordable housing, the landmark tree ordinance, and the Winslow Hotel project.

Click here to listen as BCB's Sandy Schubach interviews City Manager Morgan Smith and Interim Planning & Community Development Director Heather Wright. 

WSDOT Update: SR 305 Agate Pass Bridge painting requires lowered speed limit

Please see the update below from WSDOT regarding the ongoing Agate Pass Bridge painting project. 

Did you know there is more than one use for chain link fence?
You may have noticed crews working for WSDOT are using this type of fencing to create work platforms for upcoming SR 305 Agate Pass bridge painting. After the chain-link work platforms are in place, workers will encapsulate one-quarter of the bridge with heavy fabric.
Think of the containment system as an industrial-sized drop cloth. The containment helps prevent exposure to construction activities that include blasting, painting, debris removal, and cleanup.
Coming soon - Speed limit reduction
As soon as Saturday, July 27, crews will replace existing 45 mile-per-hour speed limit signs with 35 mile-per-hour speed limit signs. The temporary speed reduction affects SR 305 from milepost 6.74 to milepost 7.06. The lowered speed limit will be enforceable as soon signs are posted.

The speed reduction will help keep travelers moving while WSDOT contractor crews set up a containment system and  repaint  the SR 305 Agate Pass Bridge. Once the work is complete for the season, the speed limit will return to 45 mph.
We need help from drivers. While moving through this work zone -and really, any work zone-we strongly encourage all drivers to pay attention to the road. Driver inattention is the number one cause of work zone accidents. Also, please increase your following distance and slow down. Most work zone crashes involve someone running into the car ahead of them.

Temporary crosswalk
You might have noticed the temporary sidewalk across SR 305 on the Bainbridge Island side. We made this addition to accommodate bicyclists and pedestrians because part of the work includes the temporary closure of one sidewalk. While one sidewalk will remain open at all times, we have been closing one sidewalk at night. Please note that, as work progresses, one sidewalk will regularly close on the bridge.
Advance notification
We post advance notification of this work on the  Kitsap and Mason County construction and travel updates webpage. Please keep an eye on this web page for this project and other activities on state highways in Kitsap County.
Along with the web page listed above, you can also subscribe to WSDOT's email alerts for other major roadwork on state highways in Kitsap County.
Repainting extends the life of this vital bridge by fighting off rust and other weather damage. The work can only be done during dry and warm weather, so crews will do as much as they can until the fall rains return. After that, they will be back at it next spring to complete the work.
We greatly appreciate your patience and cooperation as we complete this important painting project. 
Looking ahead: City Council agenda

There is no City Council meeting next week. Below are some of the topics expected to be discussed during the August 6 City Council study session:

  • Sustainable Transportation Planning
  • A discussion on the Suzuki affordable housing project feasibility study and the number of housing units at the site
  • Revisions to the Ethics program

You can receive the Council agenda every week when it's published -- sign up for Notify Me on the City's website-- select "City Council Meeting Notifications" from the list. You can get the updates by text or email.

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).
Upcoming Events & Meetings
  • Saturday, July 27: South Ward Meeting, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. @ Island Center Hall 

Click here for the full calendar list.

City of Bainbridge Island