City Council Action

  • Fri Feb 14th, 2020 11:39am
  • News

It was City Council night on Monday. During public comment time Mark Soderlind, Chairman Forks Old Fashioned 4th of July, shared that he is seeking a site with street exposure for the 4th of July booth. Each year for about a week the booth provides a place for West End Youth League to sell fireworks, 4th buttons are sold and schedules are distributed.

Mobile home park owner, George Powers, referenced information he had previously shared with the council concerning the change over requiring park owners to now be responsible for reading water meters. Powers said time was running out, “I have to tell my tenants something.”

In a unanimous vote, the council agreed to support Navarra Carr, a Port Angeles city council member, in her appointment to the Clallam County Board of Health. Carr will represent all three cities.

Council members were asked to for a letter of support for a Clallam Transit System grant. The grant would have helped purchase zero-emission vehicles. Hillcar said, “This is not CTS’s best foot forward, the matching funds concern me.”

Weissenfels said, “I think electric is the future.” The council voted to table the subject.

Next up was Resolution #484 opposing HR2642 – Wild Olympics Wilderness and Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Fleck shared the Act had been voted out of committee and was soon heading to the House for a vote. “I have a letter from Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, stating – No adverse impact on DNR,” Fleck said.

Councilmember Joe Soha asked the difference between Wilderness and Recreational use. Fleck said it determines activities allowed, “In wilderness areas no powered equipment, usually no roads.”

Senator Patty Murray and Congressman Derek Kilmer’s “Wild Olympics” bill will restrict management and public access on an additional 125,000 acres of federal land.

Soha made a motion supporting opposition to the Act and Jeff Gingell provided the second.

City council members Mike Gilstrap, Jeff Gingell, Joe Soha and John Hillcar voted yes to support Resolution #484 opposing HR 2642 – Wild Olympics Wilderness and Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Councilmember Juanita Weissenfels was the only no vote. The motion passed.

The Wild Olympics proposal was first advanced by Rep. Norm Dicks, with a version introduced in 2012 by Murray. Dicks retired, his successor Kilmer took up the cause seeking a broad range of support.

The bill perpetuates the belief that forest management, recreation, and protection of the environment can’t be mutually beneficial.

Next City attorney/planner Rod Fleck asked the council for approval of Ordinance #646 providing for the issuance of a Water Revenue Bond. Weissenfels questioned some of the details and asked for some clarification. Fleck explained it was a USDA loan. Soha made a motion to approve and Weissenfels seconded, and the motion carried.

Police Chief Mike Rowley asked council members to approve a contract for a new inmate telephone system called Consolidated Telecom Inc. He explained how the system is provided and maintained by the company and would be of benefit by saving all recorded data as well as public records. “With this system the inmate will not leave the block to visit with family, making it safer for staff,” Rowley said. The council voted to approve the execution of the contract.

Rowley also asked for approval of a Service Agreement with PowerDMS. PowerDMS condenses documents into, a searchable online source that automatically disseminates, collects signatures on and tracks important policies and procedures. The cost would be a $3,000 per year user fee. Hillcar said it sounded like a sound investment reducing the department’s risk, exposure and possible mitigation. Council members voted to approve the Service Agreement.

Fleck updated on the Campbell Pit Well project. The city has been working with the Department of Ecology to add an extra well to the city water system. “We will decide later if the Public Works crew can do the work or if the project will have to go out to bid,” Fleck said

Public Works Director Paul Hampton shared information on the recent assistance to Beaver residents, providing several water tanks to some of the families affected by the landslide that took out their water system. Hampton also asked for action on acquiring several new vehicles that are badly needed by his department.

Meeting adjourned at about 9 p.m.

Christi Baron