Agreement reached on stadium event scheduling; SODO Arena jumps another hurdle

This afternoon it was announced that the Seattle Seahawks, The Seattle Mariners, and Chris Hansen’s organization have reached an agreement on cooperative scheduling for events in order to minimize traffic concerns with overlapping events.

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City’s response to unauthorized homeless encampments evolves

Wednesday afternoon the City Council heard from the Human Services Department and the Mayor’s Office about how the city’s approach to unauthorized homeless encampments continues to evolve. There was a bit of good news, some key insights on best practices, and some fairly blunt admissions of things that simply aren’t working — or are about to get worse.

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Notes from the SPD overtime audit briefing

This morning, the Gender Equity, Safe Communities, and New Americans Committee was briefed by the City Auditor on their recently-released audit report on the Seattle Police Department’s use and management of overtime.  I wrote on the report when it was first released, and much of today’s discussion is a repeat of that, so I won’t give a blow-by-blow report. But here are my notes of things said today that provide new points or “color commentary” based on the Council members’ interpretation of what they heard.

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Secure scheduling: the conversation continues, and it’s getting better

This morning the Council’s ongoing conversation on secure scheduling continued with stakeholders representing both employers and workers.  And the good news is that they’re finally making progress, because two things are finally going right.

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Should City Council members encourage law breaking?

This afternoon in the Energy and Environment Committee meeting, the climate-action group 350 Seattle presented their plans for their Break Free PNW “mass action event” involving civil disobedience in Anacortes, May 13-15. Committee chair Kshama Sawant, who invited them to present, closed the session by saying “We will try to promote the protest action as much as possible.”  And that presents a problem, because the participants in Break Free PNW fully intend to break the law.

Council member Kshama Sawant
Council member Kshama Sawant

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Is there lead in Seattle’s drinking water?

First there was Flint, Michigan’s horrific revelations of high levels of lead in the city’s water supply. Last week, Tacoma revealed that it had found high levels of lead in samples taken from older homes, and this morning it was reported that two Tacoma schools tested for lead in its water last year.  This has raised questions about whether the residents of Seattle should also be concerned about lead in their water. This morning, officials from Seattle Public Utilities briefed the City Council on the issue, and the good news is that almost no one in Seattle should be worried. But understanding how lead gets into the water, who is at risk, and what SPU does to ensure our water is high-quality, is a complicated affair worth taking a few minutes to understand.

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