Notes for today’s Council meetings

Here’s what happened today in Council Chambers.

Council member Juarez has confirmed that the annual “Live in D5!” event has been officially rescheduled for September 28th. Same place, same activities.

Council member Bagshaw announced that the agenda for her Finance and Neighborhoods committee meeting on Wednesday will include:

  • the resolution asking the city to pull together a work plan for protecting and expanding the city’s treee canopy;
  • the resolution and ordinance to condemn a parcel of property in Pioneer Square that has been vacant since 1989;
  • The Mayor’s ordinance related to “RV ranching.”
  • an ordinance related to how the city purchases goods and services during emergencies.

Council member Mosqueda announced that her Thursday morning committee meeting will begin at 9am (instead of the usual 9:30). In addition to the four hotel-worker bills, the committee will take up the renewal of the Multifamily Tax Exemption.

Mosqueda also noted that her committee only has two remaining meetings this year: the first, on September 19th, will be focused on “everything housing,” including the nomination of Emily Alvarado as Director of the Office of Housing. The Second, on September 24th, will be “everything Seattle City Light.”

Council member Pacheco said that his Planning, Land Use and Zoning Committee meeting on Wednesday will take up:

  • the SEPA reform bill;
  • a change to open space policy related to Seattle Times Park in South Lake Union;
  • a resolution supporting a second Montlake Bridge.

Council member Gonzalez announced that her Wednesday morning committee meeting will take up:

  • a briefing from a task force looking at SPD’s “serious and deadly use of force” on its recommendations;
  • a presentation from the Human Services Department on its RFP awarding $4.4 million to community organizations who work in harm reduction with youth in the criminal justice system.

Gonzalez also noted that her next committee meeting on September 18th, held jointly with the Labor Relations Policy Committee and the CPC, will be a public hearing dedicated to hearing from the public about concerns they have with the city’s collective bargaining agreement with SPMA,the union representing SPD supervisors — not SPOG, the union representing SPD officers.

In previewing his committee meeting tomorrow afternoon, Council member O’Brien took a moment to talk about Mayor Durkan’s proposed ordinance levying a 24 cent per gallon tax on heating oil and phasing out the current generation of underground heating oil tanks over the next decade. He said that according to the data his office has collected from heating oil companies, the average residential customer uses 400 gallons per year, which means the tax would add $100 to their annual heating costs. More broadly, he acknowledged that there is a tension between the urgency to move society off fossil fuels, but at the same time taking the time and effort to ensure that it’s a just transition that minimizes the impacts on underprivileged communities.

This afternoon, the Council unanimously approved a resolution acknowledging the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls, and directing the city to take several actions to aid in addressing the crisis.

It also approved two Parks and Recreation bills: one approving an open space land acquisition along Thornton Creek, and another approving improvements to Victor Steinbrueck Park.

Finally, the Council held until October 8th a bill re-working the way the city prosecutes hate crimes, to better align it with state law.