City Manager's Report
Dear Bainbridge Islanders,
Last Friday, the City reached another significant milestone in the project to construct a new, combined facility to replace both our Police Station and Municipal Court. The project involves the purchase of an existing 18,000-square-foot medical facility, which will then be reconstructed to meet the needs of the Police and Court functions. On Jan. 31, the City officially closed the purchase of the building from CHI Franciscan Health and took ownership of the property.

You can learn more about the plans for this project below. At a total estimated cost of roughly $20 million, it is by far the most significant capital project in the City’s plans. The new facility is necessary to meet the community’s public safety needs, and represents many years of planning and consideration. Looking ahead, the remainder of 2020 will be focused on completing final design for this project, identifying a construction partner, and beginning the actual renovation project. I hope you will follow along as we move forward in this complex and significant effort.

At the study session this week, the City Council received a briefing on using two programs -- inclusionary zoning (IZ) and a multifamily tax exemption (MFTE) – to encourage more affordable housing units within new development projects. The Council received updates on the status of the development moratorium, the Green Building initiative, the Sustainable Transportation Plan, and discussed the work by Kitsap Regional Coordinating Council (KRCC) to plan for future population growth in our region. The Council also discussed the City’s Ethics Program, and agreed to continue that topic for further discussion at next week’s business meeting.

For more information on next week’s topics and other items, please see below.
Best wishes,

Morgan Smith
City Manager
City Manager seeks enforcement action by state agencies at Triangle Property
In the past few weeks, there has been a great deal of community interest in a site known as the “Triangle Property,” located at the intersection of Fletcher Bay Rd. and Lynwood Center Rd. The site is the location of an historical and current sand mining operation, and activities at this location are subject to regulation from several agencies, including the State Department of Natural Resources (DNR), State Department of Ecology (DOE), State Department of Health (to some extent) and the City of Bainbridge Island.

Based on concerns raised by Bainbridge residents, and after several weeks of fact-finding and research, the City has identified multiple, specific concerns related to DNR’s enforcement of project conditions for the DNR mining and reclamation permit, and DOE’s regulation of the DOE Sand and Gravel General Permit.

On Thursday, Feb. 6, City Manager Morgan Smith sent letters to DNR and DOE seeking specific actions from these agencies related to regulation of this site. Click here to read the letters and for more information on the requests.
Project Updates
City finalizes $9 million purchase of new Police-Court facility
On Jan. 31, the City of Bainbridge Island completed the purchase of the Harrison Medical Center building for its new Police-Court facility. The closing documents were signed by City Manager Morgan Smith.

The building, located at 8804 Madison Avenue N, will be renovated to support completion of a new Police and Municipal Court facility. The project has a current approved budget of $20 million, which includes design, site acquisition, construction, and project management. Of this total budget, roughly $10 million has already been committed to the purchase of the property and existing building, and previous work on site selection, feasibility and design. There is roughly $10 million in remaining budget for construction and outfitting.

At the Feb. 11 business meeting, the City Council will consider a professional services agreement amendment to include new services related to LEED certification for the project. During the Jan. 21 study session, Council directed staff to return to a future meeting with a professional services contract to complete an analysis and construction estimate to help assess whether to pursue LEED certification for the project. This analysis will also include information on the carbon impact of the project and renovation design alternatives.

The project's current design includes significant sustainability features, including re-use of an existing facility and plans to meet Washington State 2015 Energy Code requirements. These planned features were presented to Council in comparison charts that showed how they would compare in energy usage and carbon production to other potential design choices as well as recognized green building benchmarks.

A Planning Commission public meeting on the Police-Court facility replacement project is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 13. The Hearing Examiner's public hearing is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 27 at 10:00 a.m. in the Council Chamber. 

CHI Franciscan Health has relocated to a combined facility with Virginia Mason at 1344 Wintergreen Lane NE on Bainbridge Island.

Click here to learn more about the project.
City to begin hazard tree removal at Waterfront Park
During the week of Feb. 17, City crews will begin work on removing trees from Waterfront Park deemed hazardous by the City's arborist and create a risk to public safety.

The first phase of work, which represents a legitimate balance between safety for the users of the park and the strong preference to avoid tree removal when possible, will involve the following:

  • The City will remove four dead trees that are in locations where it is not appropriate to leave habitat snags. 

  • Another four dead trees will be left in place and shaped to provide habitat snags but also improve safety for park users.

  • One additional tree will be removed: a large Alder that has deteriorated past the point of recovery and creates a significant safety hazard to users in the vicinity of a permanent bench. 

  • Two additional Madrona trees will be shaped into habitat snags. These trees are significantly deteriorated and are in locations where there is a high risk to park users from falling limbs (overhanging the ADA ramp and overhanging the picnic area).

  •  Eight trees (Maples and Madronas) with diminished health will be pruned. This pruning is necessary to meet the City's obligations related to safety for park users but will be less visually significant than the removal and shaping. 

The second phase of work, which will be ongoing through the next year, involves the following:

  • The City will consider additional treatments that might improve the health of all the trees in the park that are stressed in order to avoid future removals to the greatest degree possible. 

  • The City will review the remaining 25 dead trees that are in lower use/lower risk areas of the park to determine next steps. To the greatest degree possible, these trees will be managed to become habitat snags in order to avoid full removal. If it is safe to leave all 25 trees as habitat snags, the City will do so. If there are selected cases where safety issues call for removal of a tree rather than maintaining as a habitat snag, the City may need to consider some additional removal work.

  • Ongoing pruning and maintenance of other trees will be conducted as needed with the goal of improving the health of trees that are stressed and reducing any significant safety risks to park users.

The work at the park is being coordinated with the City’s replacement of the fence at the Waterfront Park playground. The fence work, which was originally scheduled to begin in early February, will likely begin at the end of the month. The playground will be closed while fence construction and playground equipment maintenance occurs, with the reopening scheduled for early April.
Police officers, staff honored at annual awards gala
The Bainbridge Island Police Department hosted its annual awards gala Saturday, Feb. 1 to recognize the accomplishments of the men and women (and K9) in the department during 2019.

Cpl. Cameron Lewis was awarded Officer of the Year for his strong leadership skills, enthusiasm, energy, compassion and genuine interest for the well-being of others. 

"Lewis is very knowledgeable about case law and handles more than his share of calls. His pleasant personality endears him to the public as well as peers, and he embodies the conduct that we demand from a police supervisor," staff wrote in prepared remarks at the gala.

Senior Police Clerk Lesley Hetzler was recognized as Civilian of the Year for being organized, thorough in her work, having a positive attitude and choosing to see the best in everyone.

“When she needs something from a member of patrol to wrap up a case file, Lesley displays a tactful yet persistent demeanor. She is very friendly with customers, using just enough humor to put everyone at ease,” staff wrote.

Both Lewis and Hetzler demonstrated exceptional performance, teamwork and accomplishments in 2019.

These awards were just a couple of the many recognitions given during the evening. Congratulations to all!
City Council Updates
Council selects liaisons for Sustainable Transportation Task Force
During the Feb. 4 study session, the City Council chose Mayor Leslie Schneider, Councilmember Joe Deets and Councilmember Kol Medina to serve as liaisons on the Sustainable Transportation Task Force.

The Councilmembers will work with staff during the next two weeks to select members of the community for the Task Force, which will assist in guiding the project and making recommendations to the Council and staff throughout the process. The City received 47 applications from community members interested in serving on the Task Force. 

The liaisons are expected to report back to Council on their recommendations at the Feb. 18 study session. 
Ethics discussion postponed to Feb. 11 business meeting
The City Council postponed its Feb. 4 discussion on the Code of Conduct and Ethics Program due to the meeting schedule running approximately 30 minutes behind. The topic is rescheduled for the beginning of the Feb. 11 business meeting.

The City's Code of Conduct and Ethics Program establishes a Code of Conduct, a Code of Ethics, and provides a process to review possible violations of the Code of Conduct and of the Code of Ethics by Councilmembers and members of City Committees and Commissions. The Code of Conduct and Ethics Program also provides for an Ethics Board to assist with the administration of the program. More information is available online on the Ethics Board webpage.

On Nov. 26, 2019, the Council adopted Resolution No. 2019-26, revising the City's Code of Conduct and Ethics Program. The revised Code of Conduct and Ethics Program took effect Feb. 1. The adoption of Resolution No. 2019-26 followed extensive Council discussion throughout 2019, involving discussion of issues related to the program during at least 20 separate Council meetings.

In short summary, the adopted revisions are intended to clarify the procedure for the review of complaints submitted by members of the public as well as for review of requests for advisory opinions and waivers by Councilmembers and members of the City's various advisory groups. The revisions also expand the Ethics Board from five to seven members and make several additions and clarifications to the Code of Ethics (i.e., Article II) contained in the program. 
Council continues discussion on affordable housing programs
During the Feb. 4 study session, City Council continued discussion on two programs that would increase the amount of affordable housing on Bainbridge Island: multifamily tax exemption (MFTE) and inclusionary zoning (IZ).

These programs were recommended in the 2018 Affordable Housing Task Force Final Report and explored in a subsequent economic market analysis and program feasibility study created by ECONorthwest, which was hired by the City to conduct the study to inform Council consideration of adopting MFTE and IZ to support additional affordable housing. The Council discussed these policy tools at two briefings in 2019.

The Feb. 4 Council discussion resulted in Council agreement to focus next on whether to adopt the MFTE and IZ programs in the City’s higher density areas, which include the City’s Central Core, Ferry Terminal, Gateway and High School Road zoning districts.

Additionally, the Council requested that City staff connect consideration of the IZ and MFTE options to the planned work to update the City’s Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) program. TDRs offer a zoning mechanism to conserve land by redirecting development that would otherwise occur on the land (the sending area) to a receiving area suitable for denser development. 

Consideration of IZ and MFTE options in connection with TDRs will be continued at a future Council meeting. Additional information can be found on the Affordable Housing webpage.
Staff updates Council on WSDOT SR 305 roundabout project
During the Feb. 4 study session, the City Council was briefed on the Washington State Department of Transportation’s (WSDOT) State Route 305 Safety & Mobility Improvements project.  The main focus of the discussion was related to the progress made on solving the stormwater management challenges associated with the project’s proposed roundabout and park-and-ride facility at the SR 305 and Day Road intersection. 

WSDOT, City staff and the property owners at the southwest corner of the intersection met several times over the last few months to discuss potential impacts to the property - which is subject to a conservation easement held by the Bainbridge Island Land Trust - from proposed stormwater facilities and other project improvements. The parties involved reviewed several design alternatives that would have a range of impacts on the property, but ultimately determined that there was not an obvious solution that would be amenable to the project needs and the needs of the property owners.

Without a viable stormwater alternative for stormwater on the southwest corner, WSDOT brought forward an option that would involve the construction of a stormwater management pond on the southeast corner of the intersection, on a portion of the property currently home to the Day Road Animal Hospital. 

City staff and Council members met with the owner of the animal hospital to discuss the impacts on the property, but with a decision on the project pending before the Working Group of regional elected officials a few days later, there was insufficient time to determine a path forward on the property negotiation - or other potential alternatives that could be viable and affordable. 

On Friday, Jan. 31, the Working Group met to discuss the overall SR305 project and made the decision to continue funding the design of the Day Road intersection, but to move the construction funds for that project into two other corridor projects: roundabouts at Suquamish Way and Totten Road. Bainbridge Island will still see two roundabouts along the SR 305 corridor at Port Madison and Agatewood roads, assuming that authorization for construction funding is approved by the legislature this spring.

Click here to watch the Feb. 4 Council update.
Upcoming City Council agenda
Below are the topics to be discussed during the Feb. 11 business meeting.

  • Proclamation declaring Black History Month
  • Review on the Code of Conduct and Ethics Program
  • Police-Court facility replacement project
  • General Code Enforcement Process update

*The next discussion on the Suzuki affordable housing project has been postponed to the March 3 study session. 

*The discussion on the Sportsman Club-New Brooklyn intersection improvements project has been postponed to the March 3 study session.
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 live-streamed 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).
City Advisory Groups Updates
Feb. 10 workshop scheduled to discuss Island Center future
What should Island Center look like in the future? More businesses? Connected trails? Safer facilities for people walking and biking? Same as it is now?

Get an update on the subarea planning process and share your feedback at a workshop next Monday, Feb. 10 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall.

The  Island Center Subarea Planning Process Steering Committee will share information on planning efforts related to transportation, public space, natural resource protection, utilities, land use choices and more. 

The committee hosted a workshop in June 2018 to identify the vision and elements for the area and now the committee members will present an update on how they have integrated the vision and elements into several alternative plans. The feedback received at the Feb. 10 meeting will help the committee draft an Island Center subarea plan that will be presented to the Planning Commission and City Council.

Click  here to learn more about the planning effort.
Upcoming Events & Meetings
Saturday, Feb. 8:
City Council retreat begins at 9 a.m. at City Hall. Councilmember Matt Tirman will be absent.
Monday, Feb. 10:
Island Center subarea planning process public workshop begins at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall.
Thursday, Feb. 13:
Planning & Public Works-Engineering counters are closed for process improvement day.
Thursday, Feb. 13:
Planning Commission meeting: study session on sign code; public meeting on Police-Court facility.
Monday, Feb. 17:
City Hall is closed for Presidents Day.
Friday, Feb. 21:
Deadline to apply for Ethics Board .
Thursday, Feb. 27:
Hearing Examiner hearing at 10 a.m. on Police-Court facility.
Tuesday, March 31:
Deadline to apply for Salary Commission.
Bainbridge Island added to Fix-It Fair schedule
Kitsap County has added Bainbridge Island to the Fix-It Fair list. If you’ve got a missing button on a shirt or broken lamp, then bring your items to the Senior Center Sunday, April 19 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. to be repaired. This event is organized by Sustainable Bainbridge and is an extension of Kitsap County's Fix-It Fairs. Click here to register.

Fix-It Fairs are free, family-friendly events where you can get your household stuff fixed by skilled community fixers!

Fix-It Fairs are a pilot project of Zero Waste Washington, Kitsap County and members of the Kitsap County community. Funding is provided through a Public Participation Grant from the Department of Ecology. Click here to learn more and read a full schedule of Kitsap County Fix-It Fairs.
Administrative Specialist retires after serving more than 20 years
Administrative Specialist II Diane Berry retired Jan. 31 after more than 20 years of service to Bainbridge Island.

Diane began her career with the City of Bainbridge Island in 1996 as a temporary, on-call Administrative Assistant in the Department of Planning and Community Development (PCD). She was hired full-time in 2000 and continued to support PCD until 2013 when she was assigned as the primary Administrative Specialist II for the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) Division of Public Works.

At O&M, Diane was the hub of the “wheel of operations” and coordinated numerous details in support of Island residents and field crews. She routinely handled a wide range of responsibilities, including Nixle notifications, SeeClickFix requests, work order creation and payroll processing. On many occasions, Diane answered calls and dispatched crews at all hours during emergency wind, rain and snowstorm events.

“Diane is a critical thinker and served as a great sounding board. She always did her best for City customers and her co-workers alike. Her smiling and cheerful presence brightened every day at O&M. She is a friend whose contributions will be missed,” said Public Works Manager Chuck Krumheuer.

Congratulations on retirement, Diane!
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Contact Information

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