The meeting was called to order by Mayor Hopkins at 7:01pm. Town planner Rob White called the role of the council. All were present. The agenda was amended to add a report from the planner to staff reports, which was then approved 5-0. There were no minutes ready to review.
Sewer: Town engineer Jerry Morrissette reported that 100% of the sewer main lines are installed now. The brick manhole at the end of Baltimore is getting replaced. The storm water line in that area was also buried as part of the current work. The contractor expected substantial completion by Oct. 1st. The “punch list” of repair items is about 60% done, and the rest of the items are being worked on. Councilmember Hunt asked about the large amount of water seen in one of the pictures. Morrissette said a culvert was added to catch the water and direct it over the sewer line. This underground spring is diverted into the lines that run through the Pt. Ruston site. Councilmember Hardin thanked the engineer for putting the punch list on the town’s web site. He felt it worked good and helped answer resident’s questions. Councilmember Hedrick asked about the area being cleared for the access road to the bottom of Baltimore, wondering if it was on railroad property. Morrissette noted that most of the access road is on Ruston property and the rest is granted by old easement allowed for maintenance.
Police: Chief Kunkel let everyone know that the lights and sirens today were for a high angle cliff rescue at Pt. Defiance. The department will be participating at Red Robin restaurant on Oct 13th, serving food to raise money for Special Olympics. Kunkel then outlined the types of calls last month. There will be training in October with the fire department on rescues in the rail road gulley and line.
Fire: Assistant Chief Bruce Allen outlined the 9 calls received last month. The department hoped to add a couple new fire fighters this month. The transmission has been repaired in aid van. Several fire fighters have received specialized training in high rise building rescues, now that the Commencement is occupied. The department is hosting an open house on Oct 13th during National Fire Prevention week. Oct. 9th Domino’s is offering free pizza to promote fire prevention (more details here).
Planning: Town Planner Rob White introduced a new tool he has created using GPS to give accurate locations for the town boundary and parcel locations. He is converting the town’s official map to digital, including the comprehensive plan map and using the tax parcel map from assessor. The maps are set up so only a few can see for now (staff, elected officials). He is adding in electric grid map right now (poles, lines) and will add sanitary lines when that project is complete. The program is available via an app for smart phones that can be used in the field, where you can pull up details on the parcel you are standing on via these new maps. There was some discussion about what servers are being used to store the information, costs, etc. Hardin will research the issue.
1. Curtis Hancock - Metro Parks Improvement Plans for Point Defiance: Hancock gave a power point presentation about plans for Pt. Defiance Park and completing the “missing link” connecting Ruston Way to the park through Pt. Ruston. He noted the great job Ruston police are doing patrolling at the park under the new agreement; they are making a big difference. Hancock outlined plans for the park, a new agreement with Pt. Ruston to develop the peninsula, the trail going in linking the trail from the Tacoma Dome to Owens Beach, pagoda, visitor center, shuttle, zoo, Ft. Nisqually, and more. The new trail will go by a new pavilion shaped building; where the upper area can be used for weddings, and the building expanded for restaurants and other uses in future.
Capping the peninsula is happening right now, and eventually the area will be transformed into a large passive park. The goal is to have the missing link connected by 2014. The interim trail should be open by next summer using haul road that was built to bring clean soil down the bluff to cap the peninsula. Metro Parks is working on grants to get everything underway by 2014 and done by 2015. Mayor Hopkins asked about plans for the entrance to park. Hancock said they are in talks with Tacoma, and seeking grants to redesign that area. Councilmember Hedrick noted an editorial he did for the News Tribune two weeks prior and asked if there was anything the city of Ruston should do. Hancock promised to be in touch within the next two weeks.
2. Ordinance 1381 - Reclassify to a Non-Charter Code City (1st Reading): The Town attorney outlined the history for this measure and the procedure for adoption. The deadline for citizens to file a referendum forcing a vote was now passed and the council is required to pass this ordinance. Hunt asked, since they have to pass the ordinance, why not pass this tonight and skip the second reading. Hopkins responded with a very strong “We are NOT doing that, we were sued for doing that before.” There was no further discussion.
Claims &Payroll passed 5-0 with no discussion.
Volunteers are needed to help install landscaping around the school. Recall that the town traded new fencing around the north parking lot for doing landscaping with the Commencement. The town planner is designing a sprinkler system for the area. Hopkins thanked Hedrick for meeting with auditor who is checking the town books and he noted that he is being educated on federal loan program by the auditor.
Hardin asked why only one of the new parking lots at the school is painted. The mayor said a design estimate would be coming soon for council to decide funding to paint the other lot.
The meeting adjourned at 8:17pm.