City Manager's Report
We at the City of Bainbridge Island join with the nation in grieving the loss of Mr. George Floyd. We stand strongly against bias and racism in any form, and we respect and support those who are peacefully speaking out to make their voices known at this time. Please see the message below from Chief of Police Joe Clark.

This has been a difficult time in our nation. We have grappled with the challenges of a worldwide pandemic and now the tragic and senseless death of Mr. George Floyd. Communities across this country are angry. Those of us in law enforcement are angry, too. The conduct of those officers in Minneapolis is unacceptable. This type of behavior has no place in our profession. Racism and bias have no place in our profession.

We have seen many public demonstrations since Mr. Floyd’s death. Here in Kitsap County, the demonstrations have been peaceful. My law enforcement partners and I are committed to ensuring that our communities have the opportunity to have their voices heard. We have seen several events here on Bainbridge Island over the past few days. While not always a visible presence at these events, Bainbridge Island Police personnel have communicated with organizers to help meet their goals for peaceful demonstrations. We are partners in this community and intend to work together to ensure we maintain your trust and support.

The Bainbridge Island Police Department is a Washington State Accredited agency. This accreditation process establishes required best practices for law enforcement agencies in Washington State. Accreditation reinforces the professionalism of our agency, ensures adherence to Washington State Law, and builds public trust. I am committed to maintaining our status as an accredited agency. The process includes outside verification that the agency has created policies to meet the established standards and that the agency follows those policies. Through the accreditation process, standards are developed for a wide range of policing practices.

“Use of force” policies are one important aspect of our policing standards. In light of recent events, I will be working with the community to review our use of force policies, confirm that we are operating with established best practices, and help to communicate about this topic with our City leadership and the broader community.

I continue to be impressed with the professionalism and commitment to the community shown by the members of this department. I have seen officers buy food for someone in need. I have seen officers show compassion for individuals in crisis. And I have seen a department committed to partnering with other agencies such as Helpline House and the Navigator program to better serve our community. I hope that you have seen this, too.
I will close by reaffirming that I believe in treating all people with dignity and respect; regardless of their circumstances, regardless of who they are, regardless of what they look like. And that is what we will continue to do in this department. Racism and bias have no place in our profession.

Thank you,

Chief of Police Joe Clark

An additional community message from Chief of Police Clark was posted earlier this week on the City's website. Read the message here .
City Council approves resolution condemning George Floyd murder, racial injustice
The City Council on Tuesday approved Resolution 2020-10 condemning the killing of Mr. George Floyd and other acts of excessive police brutality.

The resolution also reaffirms Resolution 2017-09, approved in 2017, that recognizes the City of Bainbridge Island as a ‘Welcoming and Inclusive City’ that respects the fundamental human dignity of all people.

Deputy Mayor Rasham Nassar introduced Resolution 2020-10 during the City Council study session, and said it was inspired by comments and emails that she has received from the community. Watch the June 2 City Council meeting to learn more about the discussion and to hear a reading of the approved resolution.

During the June 2 meeting, the Council also discussed scheduling a meeting soon for the City’s Race Equity Task Force to allow the task force to continue its work that was postponed due to Gov. Jay Inslee's "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" order. This meeting has not yet been scheduled.
COVID-19 Updates
Update on City's response to COVID-19
Emergency Management Coordinator Anne LeSage provided an update on the City's COVID-19 response during the June 2 City Council study session. Watch the presentation here.

Since the March activation, the Emergency Operations Center has supported nearly 70 requests from Bainbridge Island businesses and health care providers through donations of personal protective equipment, hand sanitizer, and other items.

The City's EOC priorities through June 30 include:
  • Support public health efforts to reduce rate of transmission
  • Support essential community services as a broader range of activities resumes
  • Support procurement of PPE for essential community workers and newly reopened businesses and retailers 
  • Support economic mitigation for local businesses and nonprofits
  • Assess fiscal impact to City services and budgets
  • Implement physical changes to City facilities to support staff and customers

City facility changes
At this time, City facilities will remain closed to the public through June 30. When the doors reopen to the public at City Hall, you should expect the following changes:
  • Plexiglass barriers at front counters
  • Directional signage for movement of staff and visitors
  • Six feet floor markings and stanchions to guide visitors
  • New, lower occupancy limits for conference rooms

Request for COVID-19 Safety Officer
During next week's City Council meeting, LeSage will present a proposal to City Council requesting approval to hire a COVID-19 Safety Officer. This term-limited position would be responsible for activities related to City service delivery, facility use and public health best practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Finance Update
As of June 3, the City has spent roughly $502,321 (including labor costs) to support the COVID-19 response.
Council to consider options urging public to wear face coverings
The City Council is considering options to strongly urge and possibly require people to wear cloth face coverings in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

During the June 2 study session, in order to consider such options, the Council directed City Attorney Joe Levan to draft a resolution that would strongly urge that face coverings be worn, as well as, alternatively, an ordinance that would require the wearing of masks under certain circumstances and would provide for enforcement for violators of the ordinance.

The Council will consider these options during the June 9 business meeting.

At this time, the Kitsap Public Health District encourages people to wear a face covering in places where physical distancing can’t be maintained.
Council expected to approve Economic Recovery Plan committee next week
The City Council is expected at next week's business meeting to formally approve the creation of an Economic Recovery Plan Ad Hoc Committee to support an economic recovery plan for Bainbridge Island due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The ad hoc committee will consist of Mayor Leslie Schneider (a small business owner) and Councilmembers Joe Deets and Kol Medina. The group will work with the business community to identify ways to help the business community recover from the economic losses suffered throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Building Department resumes issuing building permits
Following the lifting of restrictions, the City’s Building Department is now releasing building permits that were previously on hold due to Governor Inslee’s COVID-19 orders

On May 29, the restrictions on construction in Kitsap County were lifted as the county transitioned to Phase 2 of the state’s Safe Start plan for COVID-19 recovery.

Staff is now balancing the logjam of permits due to the COVID-19 order and new requests for permits and inspections. Please be patient as we work through this process. If you have applied for a permit and are interested in the status, please visit the Building website.

Additionally, permit specialists will contact you by email and/or phone once your permit is ready for pick up.

In order for the inspectors to conduct inspections, the revised safety requirements must be in place at the time of the construction and inspection.
Businesses seeking new ways to safely operate amid COVID-19
As businesses are preparing to reopen under Phase II and the future phases of the Governor’s Safe Start orders, some are seeking creative and new ways to conduct business to ensure their staff and customers’ safety and to protect against COVID-19.

Some improvements may include minor remodels to add plexiglass walls to provide separation and more drastic measures may include expansion of a building and retrofitting for drive through services.

Specifically, some businesses have approached the Planning & Community Development Department to temporarily expand their activities with outdoor structures to meet six feet social distancing requirements. Depending on the types of improvements proposed, a land use or building permit may be required from Planning and Community Development.

The Department is here to answer your questions and provide information on any planning or building requirements to ensure that your expansions are safely done. Please contact us with your questions at
Share your thoughts on the Grow Ave 'Safe Streets' project
The organizers of the Grow Avenue “Safe Streets” project have launched a survey to gather feedback. The survey can be found here.

Through traffic on Grow Avenue was temporarily redirected to Madison Avenue several days last month as part of the “Safe Streets” initiative supported by the City Council, Squeaky Wheels and Bainbridge GreenWays.

The “Safe Streets” project was designed to protect people walking and biking during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn more about the “Safe Streets” program and read the results of a previous survey here.
Current ferry schedule to remain in place
Until further notice, Washington State Ferries will continue to operate its current reduced schedules with the option for phased service changes based on the COVID-19 recovery and several other factors, including ridership, crew availability, vessel availability & funding.

Read the full update here.
Project Updates
Police-Court project moving forward with final design, Council to seek carbon footprint reductions
The City Council this week directed City Manager Morgan Smith to move forward with design and advertising for construction bids on the new Police Station and Municipal Court project, and decided after careful consideration that it will not pursue
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for the project. Instead, the Council will commit to seeking more efficient means to achieve the same carbon footprint reduction that implementing LEED would have achieved.

During the June 2 study session, the Council was presented with a detailed analysis of project actions required to achieve LEED certification. As part of the presentation, projected energy savings and carbon footprint reduction from making design changes for LEED certification, as well as estimated costs, were discussed.

The Council chose not to pursue LEED because of the consensus belief that there are more efficient ways to achieve the same carbon footprint reduction and, instead, committed to work with the City's Climate Change Advisory Committee to identify the best climate change action(s) to achieve the desired carbon reduction.

In January, the City finalized its $9 million purchase of the Harrison Medical Center building, located at 8804 Madison Avenue N. The project’s current design includes significant sustainability features, including reuse of the existing facility and plans to meet Washington State 2015 Energy Code requirements.

The project has a current approved budget of $20 million, which includes design, site acquisition, construction, and project management.

The next step for the Police Station and Municipal Court project is a hearing with the Planning Commission on Thursday, June 11.
Construction along Wyatt Way postponed to week of June 15
We anticipate that the Wyatt Way Reconstruction Project will now begin construction during the week of June 15.

The project will improve safety for all users (people walking, bicycling or driving) by constructing a “complete street” with sidewalks and bike lanes on Wyatt Way between Madison Avenue and Lovell Avenue.

The levels of service and connections for all users will be maintained and improved, and poor pavement and drainage features will be replaced. The project also includes the replacement of water mains that have reached the end of their useful life.

The project, which will cost approximately $4.3 million ($2.5 million of which is coming from state grants), will include many improvements:

  • A mini roundabout at the Wyatt Way-Madison Avenue intersection to improve traffic flow and pedestrian safety
  • Widened, multi-use sidewalks with ramp access for bicyclists
  • Improved ADA ramps and street crossings
  • New sidewalks on both sides of Wyatt Way between Madison Avenue and Lovell Avenue
  • Drainage and water main replacements
  • Lighting, landscaping and rainwater quality improvements

People walking and driving should expect detours in and around the project area. More information about the project schedule and detour routes will be posted on the project webpage and traffic notifications webpage as needed.
City Council Updates
City Council extends deadline to apply for City Advisory Groups
The Council is extending the deadline to apply for several City Advisory Groups, including the Race Equity Task Force, the Environmental Technical Advisory Committee, the Utility Advisory Committee, among others due to the lack of applications received during the first outreach effort.

For most advisory committees, volunteers serve a three-year term. The monthly time commitment varies for each group (most meet once per month).

Applications for these advisory groups are due Friday, July 31. Applicants must be available in August for interviews. Terms begin Sept. 1, 2020. Learn more and apply here.

Council will hold interviews and make appointments to the Planning Commission and Design Review Board this month because of the role that the committees have based on state law and City code requirements regarding the land use process.

Questions? Contact Executive Assistant Roz Lassoff at 206-780-8624 or
Public hearing on landmark tree ordinance to be held next week
The City Council will hold a public hearing at next week's Council meeting (June 9) to consider extending the Landmark Tree Ordinance (LTO) for six months. The LTO, set to expire June 26, has been in effect since June 26, 2018, and the extension is proposed until Dec. 26, 2020. The six-month extension will allow staff time to work on code revisions that were delayed due to COVID-19.

Currently, the landmark tree regulations apply only to the Winslow Master Plan Study Area (WMPSA), which includes the downtown core and nearby residential areas. The Council narrowed the ordinance in June 2019 to apply only in the WMPSA in response to public comment from property owners and Puget Sound Energy about the difficulty meeting the requirements of the regulations. Overall, the WMPSA is more urbanized and less forested than the rest of the island.

The Council adopted the regulations in 2018 to protect landmark trees after hearing from concerned residents about the loss of landmark trees on Bainbridge Island due to land clearing and development activities. The ordinance designates landmark trees based on size and species, requires a permit to remove any landmark tree, and imposes fines if a landmark tree is removed without a permit.

The ordinance only allows the removal of a landmark tree in limited circumstances --- if the tree is dead or hazardous, if removal is necessary to maintain utilities, or to allow construction when there's no feasible alternative.

Applicants whose landmark tree permits are approved for removal will be required to replant trees and possibly pay a fee to the City's tree fund.

Learn more here.
Upcoming City Council agenda
Below are some of the topics to be discussed during the June 9 meeting.

  • Public hearing on landmark tree ordinance
  • Discussion of options to strongly urge and possibly require people to wear cloth face coverings in public
  • Discussion of COVID-19 safety officer position
  • Council to consider formal approval of Economic Recovery Plan Ad Hoc Committee
  • Next steps for City Manager transition
  • Request for budget amendment for Eagle Harbor Phase II Non-motorized Improvements Project
  • Next steps for the City’s Code of Conduct and Ethics Program

If you would like to receive the City Council agenda by email when it's published, click  here to sign up on the Council Agendas webpage.

The meetings are broadcast live 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).
Special meeting scheduled for City Council, Planning Commission discussion
The City Council and Planning Commission will hold a special joint meeting on Monday, June 22 to discuss affordable housing initiatives and land use code review.

The purpose of this joint meeting is for the Council and Planning Commission to discuss and prioritize the initiatives they want to move forward in the year ahead related to affordable housing and review of land use codes.

The meeting will start at 5 p.m. and will be held via Zoom. You can watch the livestream on the City website.
Other Updates
Do you know your (evacuation) zone?
It may be hard to believe, but wildfire season is almost upon us.

Please take a few minutes to review the City’s Wildfire Response and Evacuation Plan and corresponding zone maps. Bainbridge Island is divided into 12 evacuation zones; making it extremely important for every resident to "Know Your Zone".

During an emergency, real time information will be used to determine which evacuation zones need to be evacuated. Information regarding specific evacuation routes will be shared with the community based on the location of the hazard. Learn more here .
Stay Connected
Contact Information

280 Madison Avenue North
Bainbridge Island, WA 98110
Phone: 206-842-7633