This week in Council Chambers

It’s a “week five” schedule for the Council, so there’s a bunch of rescheduled and special meetings as the Council members start the final rush to wrap things up before their August recess.

There are no special presentations scheduled for the Monday morning Council Briefing.

Monday afternoon’s full City Council meeting includes final votes on:

  • expansion of the city’s dockless bike-share pilot program;
  • a resolution establishing a timeline for building out the center city bike network;
  • lifting  a proviso on the Office for Civil Rights to build out a comprehensive community-based youth diversion program;
  • an ordinance amending the Human Rights Code, broadening the coverage of unfair practices related to reasonable accommodations and reasonable modifications;
  • A resolution adopting revised procedures for Seattle City Light to dispose of surplus properties to support affordable housing projects.

This week’s Introduction and Referral Calendar includes the following new legislation:

  • some fine-tuning of the city’s surveillance-technology acquisition ordinance;
  • an ordinance authorizing the Parks Department to acquire the Orchard Street Ravine;
  • an ordinance revising Seattle Public Utilities’ wholesale water rates;
  • allowing new athletic field lights at Bitter Lake Community Center and Park.

Tuesday morning at 9:00am, the Planning, Land Use and Zoning Committee will hold a special meeting to hear from those appealing the University of Washington’s Major Institution Master Plan update. This is a quasi-judicial proceeding for the Council, so only those who filed official appeals will be allowed to testify.

Wednesday morning, the Planning, Land Use and Zoning Committee meets. The agenda has not yet been published, but the committee is expected to discuss various contract rezones and tree protection ordinances.

Wednesday afternoon, the Civic Development, Public Assets and Native Communities Committee meets. It is expected to take up the Orchard Street Ravine and Bitter Lake Community Center items from the IRC, plus some other property acquisition and parks-related legislation.

Wednesday evening at 6pm, a public hearing will be held on the nomination of Carmen Best as Chief of Police.

Thursday morning, the Housing, Health, Energy, and Workers’ Rights Committee meets. The agenda has not yet been released, but the committee will likely consider several appointments to the Capitol Hill Housing Improvement Program Council.

 

 

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5 thoughts on “This week in Council Chambers”

  1. Kevin – RE Agenda item on Monday’s full council meeting Seattle City Light being able to dispose of “surplus” property for another agency to build affordable housing. What is the meaning of the term “affordable housing” here? Investment in permanent housing or emergency housing? What’s the revenue source for these funds? General Fund? An existing levy? Are we using funds raised by the recent levy we voted on a year or so ago for construction of permanent housing? Or are we working a deal to award what is considered Seattle City Light property and give it to a non profit agency that is rapidly developing more encampments that were originally marketed as an emergency solution and are now morphing into permanent housing?

    Hoping you can read between the lines and tell us what us actually going to happen.

    Thanks

    1. It’s permanent housing. It isn’t about a revenue source per se; it’s about being able to give surplus property for free or sell it at a deeply discounted price to non-profit affordable housing developers in order to reduce the cost of building affordable housing. This is being driven by a recent change in state law that no longer requires agencies disposing of surplus property to sell it for full market value if the intended use is for affordable housing. The cost of acquiring land has been a substantial portion of the development cost in recent years, especially in neighborhoods like SLU and other rapidly-gentrifying neighborhoods, so this allows the city to use its surplus property assets to ensure that affordable housing is spread around the city — and that more of it gets built.

      1. Thanks for your response. I understand the intent and the value of the legislation. Hope we can see some progress around increasing the number of permanent affordable housing units as a result of these actions.

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