Randy’s Rundown: Richland City Council Feb. 23 Workshop Explained

This meeting will not be on television, nor will it be taped.  You can join the party at 6:00 p.m. by going to the agenda and clicking on Zoom.

  1. Police Chief John Bruce will explain the process for investigating the recent Richland police shooting.  To get a head start on this discussion read WAC 139-12, the new state law governing the police investing police investigations.
  • City Attorney Heather Kintzley and Public Works Director Pete Rogalsky will discuss the use of wheeled all terrain vehicles on city streets.  An all-terrain vehicle ( ATV ), also known as a quad, quad bike, three-wheeler, four-track, four-wheeler or quadricycle as defined by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a vehicle that travels on low-pressure tires, with a seat that is straddled by the operator, along with handlebars. It is NOT a snowmobile or a golf cart (darn). Pg. 3-9
  • Director of Parks and Public Facilities Joe Schiessl will discuss speed limits on city shared-use paths.  Electric bicycles and scooters and scooter sharing programs have inspired this discussion Pg. 9

Randy’s Rundown: Richland City Council Feb.16 agenda explained

Randy has simplified the Rundown.

Go to the city council agenda and packet for details on the city council agenda.  The item numbers below correspond with the item numbers in the agenda. Page numbers following the item correspond to the pages in the packet.

  1. Richland Art Commission will make two awards recognizing contributions to the arts. Pg. 4

2. Arts Commission Chair Dr. Jeff Kissel will discuss the 2021 commission work plan. Pg. 5

3. TRIDEC (Tri-Cities Economic Development Council) Annual Report from Karl Dye President.  Pg. 6

4. PUBLIC HEARING —    for Traffic Signal Systemic Safety Upgrades Project. I would like to tell you what this is about, but I have no clue. In Seattle this means making the walk signals last longer so a pedestrian can safely cross the street. The city will spend around $500,000 and receive a grant.  Here’s what is written:  “Upgrades project is designed to upgrade traffic signal equipment throughout the City, providing improved functionality at signals and making travel movements more efficient and safe through a combination of enhanced visibility and electronic controls.” City hall is closed Monday. You have Tuesday until 4:00 p.m. to find out what this is about and sign up to comment. — (go to the agenda for instructions on how to provide a three-minute comment). Pg. 62-65

PUBLIC COMMENTS – go to the agenda and read the rules. You get 2 minutes to talk about whatever your heart desires.

5. Approve Council Minutes for the Feb. 2 council meeting and the Feb. 9 workshop. Pg. 8-17

6. Bike Lanes will be added to Swift, Goethals and Williams when they are repaved and parking on other streets will be limited to make way for bike lanes.  Check out the list.  Pg. 18-30

7. The city council doesn’t want to listen to you complain if your sign application was rejected so your appeal will now go to the hearing examiner rather than the city council. Pg. 31-36

8. If you are thrown off your property for a public works project, you have to follow these rules for relocation assistance.  I highly recommend good legal representation. Pg.37-41

9. Twenty-three homes will be squeezed on to 4.2 acres in the Clearwater Creek development between Clearwater and Center Parkway. Pg.42-58

 10. Order of Agenda Items for Richland City Council Meetings is modified. Before you start scratching your heads, this is a typical Richland city process. They change, then codify the change years later. Apparently, the current agenda doesn’t look like it did back in the 1990s. Pg. 59-61

11. YIKES, just YIKES. Traffic Signal Systemic Safety Upgrades. This was the subject of the public hearing, item 4. You have until 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday to figure out what it this is about and call to put your name on the list to comment.  GOOD LUCK.  Monday is a holiday. Here’s what it says: “On February 14, 2021, notice was published that a public hearing would be held on February 16, 2021 to take public testimony regarding this proposed amendment. Barring any compelling public testimony to the contrary, staff recommends adoption of Resolution No. 23-21.”😂  The project will cost almost $500K but a grant has been obtained. Pg. 62-65

12. Councilmember Bob Thompson will be appointed to the Hanford Advisory Board until the end of 2021. Thompson told his fellow councilmembers during a workshop last Tuesday that he wanted the job and the council gave it to him. Long time Richland representative Pam Larsen resigned last year. Pg.66

13. Expenditures — all checks written in January pg. 67-147

14. The city will rezone 3.1 acres at Steptoe and Center Parkway in Clearwater Creek from AG (agriculture) to C-1 (neighborhood retail). If you have anything to say about this, you’re out of luck. The case is closed.  Pg. 148-161

15. The city will rezone 2.9 acres located at 1769 Leslie Road from C-LB (limited business use district) to C-3 (general commercial) so a Goodwill resale store can be built there.  Interestingly, the Round Table Pizza Restaurant next door does not conform to the C-LB zoning and changing this area to C-3 brings it into compliance. Pg. 162-175

16. This Benton County Jail agreement will require the City to pay 7.48% of the net operating costs for the jail (based on a fiscal rolling 3-year average). This is an increase from the 2020 rate of 7.43% assuming net operating costs and bed days remain constant, this jail contract will cost the City approximately $1,300,000. Pg. 176-191

17. The City Council will discuss the terms of Interim City Manager Jon Amundson’s Contract. Pg. 192

BLAH, BLAH, BLAH This is when the mayor and council get to talk for as long as they want about whatever.

Randy’s Rundown: Richland City Council Feb.2 agenda explained

Feb.1 — Item 9 has been edited to clarify that the city owes Viking Builders $266,250,06 for improvements to Gage Blvd.

Cindy Reent’s finalized separation agreement and Phil Lemley’s proposed ethics committee do not appear on this agenda

Go here for the agenda and the packet of information that accompanies it.  The pages following the items below correspond to the pages in the packet.

City Council Regular Meeting – 6:00 p.m. via Zoom

Welcome and Roll Call

Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Agenda

Presentations:

  1. LIGO ( Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) Month

2. Annual Development Service Update – Kerwin Jensen, Development Services Director

Public Hearings: If there were any hearings, you would have 3 minutes to talk about them.

Public Comments: You have 2 minutes for public comment. You can phone and make your comment (instructions on the top of the agenda) or you can submit them to be read by a city staff member in a flat, boring, emotionless voice. In any case, questions are forbidden. Councilmembers will sit there with a straight face and appear to be listening.

Consent Calendar: This is where they put things like 15-year leases on city docks. No one will say a word and there will be one vote on all at the end.

3. Minutes: Jan.19 and Jan.26 city council meeting minutes will be approved. Pg.8-15 These minutes tell you next to nothing about what happened at the city council meeting. But this exciting news is recorded:  January 19 Councilmember Marianne Boring moved to take a land sale contract off the consent calendar because of “naming inconsistencies between the purchase and sale agreement and the proposed resolution and asked that the inconsistencies be remedied before execution of the documents.” Wonders never cease at Richland City Council. Somebody asked to remove something from the consent calendar for discussion.

Ordinances – First Reading

4. This ordinance outlines restrictions for relocation assistance for people who are evicted from their property after an eminent domain proceeding takes it for a public project. All the many deadlines for appealing decisions have been listed. I hope anyone whose property is taken has a good attorney. This deserves a discussion but fat chance of that.  Pg.16-20.

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage

Nothing here.

Resolutions – Adoption

5. The Council will distribute $145,000 from the Business License Reserve Fund — $25,000 for the business recovery and resiliency program, $14,000 for stage-2 businesses looking to expand, $6,000 for the Uptown Business District alley art program and $100,000 for the commercial façade improvement program.  This leaves $22,690 left in the fund. Pg. 21-23

6. The Port of Benton will pay the city $300,000 to be included in the city’s slurry seal road preservation project. The city will put the slurry seal program up for bid.  The approved Richland 2021 Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) has authorized $2,230,000 for the 2021 Pavement Preservation Program. If you read Randy’s Rundown for Jan. 19, you should be up to speed now on pavement preservation. Pg. 24-29

7. This authorizes an agreement with TRIDEC for Marketing and Representation Services. TRIDEC maintains a list of city properties on its website.  You can read 16 pages about what TRIDEC is doing to promote the Tri-Cities. Pg. 30-46

8. Oops, another city boo-boo. This corrects the city’s compensation plan for unaffiliated employees to include an inflation adjustment that was omitted when it was approved on November 17, 2020. As an example, look at the first person on the list, “Accountant.” In November, the minimum hourly wage was $32.26 but with the 1.3 percent adjustment, the minimum is now $32.68.  The item first appeared on the no questions asked consent calendar just like this one does. Pg. 47-52.

9. The city is responsible for building major roads and one way they pay for that is via development impact fees charged to home buyers. Viking Builders completed road improvements on Gage and the cost exceeded the impact fees from their development, The Reserve at Summerview Terrace. Since it was the responsibility of the city to pay for the road, Viking will receive the overage $266,250.06 in installments from impact fees collected elsewhere. The first installment is $50,000 and Viking will be paid the remainder quarterly as fees become available. Pg.53-60.

10. Intermountain Materials Testing & Geotechnical will be awarded a 5-year contract not to exceed $75,000 a year for materials testing services. The company will test cement, asphalt and other materials to assure that it meets applicable standards. Four companies submitted bids.  Intermountain was founded by Marianne Boring and her husband. This could be a conflict of interest for Boring. By definition a conflict of interest occurs when a party has competing interests or loyalties. A conflict of interest does not just apply to a “financial” conflict.

 11. The city has agreed to a settlement regarding sewer and water service to Jolene and Michael Grimes who purchased their property at 1061 Allenwhite Drive in 2008. Somehow, the city limits went around a few acres there, possibly because development occurred around an older existing home. In 2002 the city agreed to extend water and sewer to that home. After the Grimes purchased the home in 2008 and divided the lot into 1061 and 1063, they asked the city to extend the water and sewer to the second lot. The city said the 2002 agreement only applied to one lot and advised the Grimes to apply for annexation. They have applied. While annexation is going through the process the city is providing the water and sewer to the second lot at the expense of the owner.  Pg. 77-82

Items – Approval

None

Expenditures – Approval

None

Items of Business:

None

Reports and Comments:

blah, blah, blah  

At the end of the Jan. 19 meeting Thompson pitched ivermectin as a drug for treatment and prevention of COVID. Ivermectin is an ingredient in canine heartworm medicine and in head lice remedies. This drug along with every other drug on the planet is being STUDIED for use against COVID but Bob is ready to prescribe it to the masses. I just hope he doesn’t have a dog.

Executive Session:  Secret session to evaluate qualifications of an applicant or to review the performance of an employee (60 minutes).

Is this about the terms of Cindy Reent’s termination agreement???  The council meeting minutes for the December 15, 2020 meeting says: “City of Richland and City Manager Reents have mutually agreed to enter into a separation agreement, although the terms of the agreement have yet to be finalized.” The finalized agreement must be approved in open session.

Randy’s Rundown: Richland City Council Jan. 19, agenda explained

Comprehensive plans and zoning are merely suggestions in Richland. See items 11 and 12.

Correction: Item 4, the City of Richland is selling the property not buying the property.

Page numbers given below correspond to the page numbers of the packet items. To make a public comment see instructions on the agenda which is on the first page of the packet.

City Council Workshop – 5:00 p.m. via Zoom

  1. Executive Session to Evaluate the qualifications of an applicant for public employment (55 minutes). If this is a new city manager, the council certainly didn’t waste any time finding a replacement for Cindy Reents.

City Council Regular Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

Welcome and Roll Call

Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Agenda

Presentations:

None Listed.

Public Hearing: Residents would be allowed 3 minutes to comment on public hearing items, but none are listed.

Public Comments: Residents can have 2 minutes to comment about anything. See directions at the top of the agenda, link above. However, residents are warned that the council will not “directly respond.”

Consent Calendar: These items receive little if any discussion and they will be approved with one vote. One councilmember can pull an item off the Consent Calendar for discussion and a separate vote, but they rarely do.

Minutes:

  2. The council will approve the minutes from its last brief meeting. Pg. 4-9

Ordinances – First Reading

None listed.

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage:

None listed.

Resolutions – Adoption

3. A $174.705 consulting fee will be paid to H.W. Lochner for phase 1 of a three-phase project to make traffic move faster down George Washington Way.  The three phases include evaluating the S. George Washington Way/Columbia Point Intersection for improvements, selecting a preferred alternative, completing the design of the preferred alternative, preparing plans, specifications, and estimate (PS&E) package to be advertised for construction, and assisting with the construction administration/management. North Richland residents who want to see the traffic diverted from GWay to the bypass to facilitate better downtown development have vigorously opposed this plan, particularly the alternative that would take the ballet studio. Page.10-79

4. The city is amending its purchase agreement with Kamal Singh (owner of AK’s Investments, LLC) to sell 3 acres instead of 2.56 acres at the northeast corner of Kingsgate Way and Clubhouse Lane. The AK investment will pay $436,621 for the purchase of 3 acres, up from the previous purchase price of $336,501 for the original 2.56 acres. The acreage will be used for commercial development near the traffic circle into the new Horn Rapids Commercial Plaza.

5. Nasty, dirty stormwater runoff coming from the roads and other impervious surfaces around Hains Avenue will be treated by these facilities before it flows into the Columbia River. This authorizes an agreement for the state to pay ¾ of the $300,000 cost of infiltration basins in the grassy areas along the road and an infiltration basin under the road. The basin under the road will have a pre-treatment system to remove oil and other pollutants. Pg. 88-133

6. This authorizes an agreement with Energy Northwest for technical services. No cost is given but whatever it is, it will be covered with funds from the electric utility’s expert services budget. My resident expert tells me that this is probably for electrical engineering services. Pg.134-145

7. This authorizes staff to apply for state funding for pavement preservation of Stevens Dr. In case you didn’t know anything about pavement preservation, you will now. It includes chip seals, slurry seals, hot mix asphalt overlays, crack seals and other methods. According to the U.S. Park Service, “A key to successful pavement preservation is choosing the right treatment, for the right road at the right time.” For more go to www.pavementpreservation.org at the University of Michigan.  Pg. 146-147

8. John Watson, who owns an existing business that specializes in nuclear-certified piping materials, valves, instrumentation, machine components, fasteners, and engineering services, wants to purchase 1.49 acres for $81,205 to expand his business in the Horn Rapids Industrial Park at the northwest corner of Kingsgate Way and Battelle. Pg. 148-163

9. The final plat of West Village – Phase 5 proposes to divide 24.6 acres into 114 residential lots and one (1) tract on a site located in the Badger Mountain South Master Planned Community. Sprawl, sprawl, sprawl   Pg. 164-193

Items – Approval:

Nothing here.

Expenditures – Approval

December checks for $39,427,358.45   Pg. 194-255

Items of Business:

11. The comprehensive plan is only good until a developer comes along and wants to change it. This amends the comprehensive plan for 300 acres owned by developer Greg Markel located in the very northwest portion of the City along SR-240. Approximately 177 acres will be medium density residential and approximately 123 acres will be commercial (from Public Facility). On page 266 Patrick Paulson argues that approving sprawl development discourages redevelopment in the downtown.  Pg. 256-286

12.    Changing the zoning to accommodate the above. Pg. 286-293.

13, Appointing Assistant City Manager Jon Amundson to be interim city manager and giving him a 10% raise for taking the job. Pg. 293-294.

Reports and Comments:

Blah, blah, blah and probably a lecture from Bob Thompson.

Adjourn:

Randy’s Rundown: Richland City Council Dec.1 agenda explained

Perhaps to save the council from further embarrassing comments from Councilmember Bob Thompson, no COVID update appears on the agenda for the first time since March

If you want to comment on the hearing items go to the city agenda and follow the instructions.

Page numbers give below correspond to the page numbers of the packet items.

City Council Regular Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

Welcome and Roll Call

Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Agenda: (Approved by Motion) 

Presentations:  Possibly to save itself from further embarrassing comments from Councilmember Bob Thompson, this council meeting will have no COVID update for the first time since March. At the last meeting Thompson said that it was a good thing that more people had COVID.

Public Hearing:  You can have 3 minutes to comment here.  Go to the agenda (link above) for instructions.

  1. Robert Zinsli wants the city to annex his 8.52 acres at 771 Shockley Road. The city will designate the zoning as low-density residential which allows primarily for residences but also for neighborhood amenities such as churches and restaurants. City staff assumes 24 units with 2.6 person per household (pg. 27). They have done a cost and benefit analysis that considers roads, fire department and police coverage but nothing about schools. According to Zillow, the owner tried to sell the property last year for $1.5 million.   Pg. 20-30

2. Greg Markel of Vantage Way properties asked that the city rezone his 177 acres in Horn Rapids from agricultural to medium density residential which allows for duplexes and possibly townhouses as well as single family housing. He wants the additional 123 acres rezoned from public facility to commercial. This amends the Comprehensive Plan to allow that.  In a telephone conversation earlier this year, I asked Markel if he felt that roads in the Horn Rapids area could handle the additional traffic.  He said he did and added, “I may be dead before there is development on this property.”

The City of Richland will rezone its own 30-acre property in the Horn Rapid area from industrial to commercial. Pg. 89-98

3. This Amends the Zoning Maps to reflect the changes that have been requested in the above items. Pg.99-105

Public Comments:  You have 2 minutes to talk about anything, unlike council members who can go on and on and on and on. No questions are allowed.

Consent Calendar:   The Council lumps everything into this category. The items receive little if any discussion and only one vote so that no one can be held accountable.

Minutes

4. The council will approve the almost worthless minutes of the last meeting. It reads like this, “Councilmembers shared thoughts.” If you want to know what was actually said and what actually happened in the meetings go to the tape on City View

Ordinances – First Reading

5. City Council votes itself a 1.3% raise. The raise will not take effect until 2024 after everyone who voted for it would be up for re-election. City-provided health insurance and other perks more than double the compensation that some city councilmembers make.  Bob Thompson tops the list with about $37,000 in compensation in 2019.  Pg. 16-19

6. See Item 1 under Public Hearing

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage

7. This explains year-end budget reconciliation.  Money is moved around to make it all balance out in the end.  For instance, a police crime van was budgeted in the general fund for $275,000 but state and federal grants paid for it.That $275,000 can be used to cover a shortage somewhere else. At the last council meeting the city manager announced that $500,000 had been found in the budget to use for building a new the animal shelter.  Pg. 31-34.

Resolutions – Adoptions

8. The Richland Police Department has received a $45,000 grant from federal and state funding for investigation and prosecution of internet crimes against children. The funds will help cover the costs of forensic hardware and software. Pg. 31-39

9. David Pandzhakidze owner of D&I Investments LLC wants to purchase 10 acres of the city’s property in the Horn Rapids Industrial Park for $400,000. The city has a repurchase right if a building plan is not submitted within 8 months of closing and if building has not begun in 18 months. Pandzhakidze writes to the city council that he already has his first client, Avallax LLC, that will lease at least a 6000 square foot building and bring two good paying jobs.  Avallax LLC also belongs to Pandzhakidze. Pg. 40-57

10. This will extend the city’s contract with DGR Grant Construction in the amount of $119,278 for design and construction assistance for the two new fire stations, also known as “Public Safety Response Stations nos. 73&75.” Page 58-72.

Items – Approval

Nothing

Expenditures – Approval

Nothing

Items of Business

11. This proposed revision of the Richland Municipal Code would allow the city council to appoint a replacement for the city manager while they look to permanently fill the position when a city manager is absent for 60 days due to illness, disability or any other reason. Reents recommended increasing the current 14-day limit. When the councilmembers discussed this at the last meeting, Reents assured them that she felt fine and was not sick.

The code will also be amended to allow the city manager to pick an assistant city manager.  The city hired Reents as assistant city manager in 2003.

12. See Item 2 under Public Hearing

13. See Item 3 under Public Hearing

Reports and Comments

Blah, blah, blah, curse, curse, curse.

Executive Session

A secret meeting to discuss lawsuits.

Randy Notes: the rundown on the November 17 Richland City Council agenda

Daisy, Photo by Jan Taylor

Funding Found for the Animal Shelter

November 15, 2020

Randy Notes translates the gobbledygook of the Richland City Council agenda for you.

If you want to comment on the hearing items go to the city agenda and follow the instructions.

Page numbers given below correspond to the page numbers of the packet items.  

City Council Workshop – 5:00 p.m.

  1. Council members receive training in city social media policy.

City Council Regular Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

Welcome and Roll Call

Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Agenda: (Approved by Motion)

Presentations

2. Covid update from City Manager Cindy Reents

Public Hearing:  You can have 3 minutes to comment here.  Go to the agenda (link above) for instructions. The city attorney reads the rules. Questions are not allowed. The rules normally include prohibitions about clapping and other citizen misbehavior that could result in expulsion. However, since she can’t have you kicked out of a virtual meeting, you are free to clap and boo to your heart’s content.

3. Money found for the animal shelter. Each of the three Tri-Cities’ jurisdictions have responsibility for the area animal shelter. Richland had budgeted $!.5 million for its one-third share of the cost. However, the city needed to find an extra $500,000 for its share when construction estimates came in for a higher amount. Since the Washington State Supreme Court decided that Richland and other cities can keep charging the car tab, $500,000 became available for the extra funding. Look at Pg. 29 “General Fund.” This and other amendments to the 2020 budget can be found on Pg. 25-29.

4. In 2021, the city will receive $305,207 dollars in Community Block Grant Funding. Recipients include Elijah Family Homes and Meals on Wheels. For others go to Page 63. The Tri-Cities HOME consortium will receive $700,367 for down payment assistance, pg.64.  Details on the two programs are on pg. 60-107.

5. The city has received an additional $310,301 from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. It will be distributed as follows: Microenterprise Business Assistance $161,030; Public Service $118,241; Administration $31,030. Pg. 107-112

6. An update of the city employee compensation plan. Pg. 151-156

7. Relinquishment of a utility easement at 2209 Humphreys Street.  Pg.157-160

8. The Port of Benton has requested a portion of easement north and east of Robertson Drive. Pg. 161-164

Public Comments:  You have 2 minutes to talk about anything. Same rules as for the public hearings. No questions allowed.

Consent Calendar:   The Council lumps everything into this category. The items receive little if any discussion and only one vote so that no one can be held accountable.

Minutes

9. Approval of the November 3, 2020 minutes

Ordinances – First Reading

10. See Item 3 under the Public Hearing section. These are the amendments to the 2020 budget which include the new animal shelter. Pg. 25-29.

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage

11. Proposed 2021 budget and 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Plan.  The budget proposal is online.  

12. Amending Chapter 2.04 of the Richland Municipal Code. This eliminates the position of deputy city manager and eliminates the assistant city manager as someone who is hired and instead makes the position someone who is chosen by and directed by the city manager. It also makes the descriptions of the city manager gender neutral. It changes the names of several city committees and departments to reflect their current responsibilities.  For instance, Parks and Recreation becomes Parks and Public Facilities. Pg. 30-45

Resolutions – Adoptions

13. Columbia Center Parkway will eventually go through between Gage and Tapteal.  This approves the $400,000 funding from the Port of Kennewick. Pg.46-52

14. The Port of Benton will contribute $50,000 for the same Gage to Tapteal project above. Pg.52-59

15. CDBG funding was the subject of the Item 4 hearing under the Public Hearing section. Pg. 60-107

16. CARES Act funding was the subject of the Item 5 hearing under the Public Hearing section. Pg. 107-112

17. This authorizes the circulation of a petition for residents to approve the annexation of Badger Mountain Vineyards at 1106 N. Jurupa Road.  The land would be zoned low density.

18. Apollo Inc. of Kennewick submitted the lowest bid, $4,405,295.72, for improvements to about a mile of Columbia Park Trail East.  The packet provides details.  Pg. 123-145

19. The city has hired a new civil engineer but until that person is up to speed, the city will pay RGW Enterprises a consulting fee for services regarding the new Horn Rapids and North Richland development projects. This will add about $93,000 to the original contract.  Pg. 146-150

20. Item 6 from the Public Hearing section, the compensation plan for city employees. Pg. 151-156

21. Item 7 from the Public Hearing section, relinquishment of the easement at 2209 Humphreys Street. Pag. 157-160

22. Item 8 from the Public Hearing section, relinquishment of an easement to the Port of Benton. Pg.161-164.

23. The owners of 4 homes on Allenwhite Drive live on a little island of land in the middle of the city. See for yourself on this map of Richland.   The paperwork doesn’t include an explanation as to how this happened, but the annexation petitions reads, “petitioners pray that the City Council of the City of Richland, Washington entertain this petition.” Pg. 165-171.

Items – Approval

24. Lizzy Ridley will be appointed to the Planning Commission. Ridley is a land use planner at J-U-B Engineers. The firm advertises as working in “Transportation, Water Resources and Land Development.”  Pg. 175-176.

Expenditures – Approval

25. All checks written in October.  Pg. 177-212

Items of Business

Nothing

Reports and Comments

City Manager, Council and Mayor – blah, blah, blah

Secret Executive Session

26. The council estimates 30 minutes for this secret meeting.  You can keep your television or computer engaged to see when Mayor Ryan Lukson comes out to declare it completed.  Taxpayers are paying for “retained legal counsel” for current or potential litigation.

Randy’s Notes: a rundown on the Nov. 3 Richland City Council agenda

Budget and Taxes

If you want to comment on the hearings or during the public comment period, go to the city agenda and follow the instructions.

Page numbers given below correspond to the page numbers of the packet items.

Secret Executive Session – 5:45 p.m

  1. During this closed session, expected to last for 15 minutes, Council will discuss union contracts and/or negotiations.

City Council Regular Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

Welcome and Roll Call

Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Agenda: (Approved by Motion)

Presentations

2. Covid-19 Update, Cindy Reents, City Manager.  Pg. 6

Public Hearing:  You can have 3 minutes to comment here.  Go to the agenda (link above) for instructions.

3. Proposed 2021 budget and 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Plan.  The budget proposal is online.    Pg. 7

4. Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Southeast Washington telecommunicators Guild. The contract is provided on Pg. 177-211.

5. Collective Bargaining Agreement with the International Union of Operating Engineers. Their contract is provided on Pg. 211-266

Public Comments:  You have 2 minutes to talk about anything, but questions are not allowed. The city attorney reads the rules and the penalties for citizen misbehavior, like clapping, which seem even more ridiculous now that citizens attend the meetings remotely.

Consent Calendar:   The Council lumps everything into this category. The items receive little if any discussion and only one vote so that no one can be held accountable.

Minutes

6. Approval of the Oct. 20 council meeting minutes and the Oct. 27 council workshop minutes. These tell you next to nothing. Pg. 10-21   If you’re really interested in what happened, go to City View and watch the tapes

Ordinances – First Reading

7. Approving the 2021 Budget and the 2021-2026 Capital Improvement Plan. In case you have forgotten already, this was the first public hearing. Pg. 22-25

8. Amending Chapter 2.04 of the Richland Municipal Code. This is mostly a cleanup.  It makes all of the descriptions of the city manager gender neutral. It changes the names of several city committees and departments to reflect their current responsibilities.  For instance, Parks and Recreation becomes Parks and Public Facilities. The job of the assistant city manager has been amended. Pg. 26-41

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage

9. Increasing funding for fire department radios, stormwater facility maintenance, wastewater plant improvements and industrial development. Pg. 42-45

10, Potable water cannot be used for irrigation where non-potable water is available. A violation could result in your potable water service being discontinued. Pg.46-50

11. If you own a $300,000 house, your taxes will go up by $7.  The rest of the numbers are on Pg. 54.

12. More on Taxes   Pg. 51-60

13. More on Taxes   Pg. 51-60

14. You’re not allowed to discharge a firearm in the city unless it’s at the airport and you’re shooting at animals that could crash an airplane. But according to the airport officials, shooting is the last resort. Pg. 61-63

15. If you want to repair your sidewalk and you fill out enough paperwork, the city will reimburse 25% of the costs.  If you don’t clear your sidewalk of snow, you could be in trouble.  Check the rules. Pg. 64-67

16. The definition of a potentially dangerous animal is amended to include an animal endangering someone “on the private property of another.” As written, the same behavior on public property would warrant declaring the animal as potentially dangerous, but no protections are afforded for the same conduct on the private property of another. Pg. 68-73

17. There’s a deficiency in the definition of Second Degree Criminal Trespass. This remedies that by defining “premises” as “any real property (fenced or unfenced), vehicle, railway car, cargo container, or other similar structure.” This definition will eliminate ambiguity between second degree criminal trespass and first degree criminal trespass, which provides that it is unlawful for any person to knowingly enter or remain, unlawfully, in a building of another Pg. 73-75

18. The lodging tax charged to hotel guests and used for tourism promotion in the Tri-Cities will be increased from $2.00 to $3.00 a night. Pg. 76-78

Resolutions – Adoptions

19. Commonstreet Consulting, LLC,  will be hired to help the city staff acquire the right-of-way for three projects — Among these are Center Parkway, the Vantage Highway Path – Phase 2, South George Washington Way Intersection Improvements, Van Giesen/Thayer Intersection Improvements, and Gage Boulevard Improvements. Pg 79-136

20. Approving the 2021 Tri-City Regional Hotel-Motel Commission budget and marketing plan. Everything you wanted to know about tourism in the Tri-Cities.  Pg. 137-166.

21. More about raising the lodging tax. Pg. 167-172

22. Updating council assignments. New Councilmember Marianne Boring will have Brad Anderson’s assignments. Welcome to the Mosquito Control Board Councilmember Boring! Councilmember Terry Christensen wanted Brad’s assignment to the Lodging Tax Board. The council voted to grant him his wish with the proviso that he recuses himself for matters involving softball. In the past Christensen has been in hot water for lobbying for his favorite sport.

23. Approving the 2021 Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Southeast Washington Telecommunicators Guild. This was the subject of the earlier public hearing.  The contract is on pg. 177-211.

24. Approving the 2021 Collective Bargaining Agreement with the International Union of Operating Engineers. This was the subject of the earlier public hearing. The contract is on pg. 211-266

25. Adopting the City of Richland’s 2021 legislative priorities. The City is leading a regional effort to improve SR240 with an Aaron Drive flyover exchange, estimated to cost $30 million. The second requested improvement is the SR240 / SR224 / Van Giesen Street Interchange, estimated to cost $45 million. Other projects include police training, environmental improvements to the area around Bateman Island, and funding for LED lights for city streets. Pg. 267-270

26. Adopting the City of Richland street light standards. The city wants to switch to LED lights. The policy for street lighting is included in these pages. Pg. 271-283 

27. Authorizing a grant agreement with the Washington Traffic Safety Commission for Pedestrian Safety Funding. Plenty of information here about the contract and funding but nothing about what the police actually plan to do about pedestrian safety.  Pg. 284-289

28. Authorizing the 5-year renewal agreement for the promotion of tourism with the Tri-Cities Visitor and Convention Bureau. The City agrees to pay the Bureau fifty percent of the annual average hotel/motel tax receipts of the City collected from the first two percent levied for the five-year period immediately preceding each year of the contract period.   See Pg. 290-295

Items – Approval

Expenditures – Approval

Items of Business

Authorizing a funding agreement with Benton country for the Center Parkway North – Gage to Tapteal Project. The proposed agreement will secure $1,240,000 from the Benton County Rural County Capital Fund for this project.  Pg 296 – 304

Reports and Comments

City Manager, City Councilmembers, Mayor 

blah, blah, blah

Secret Executive Session

Yes, another one. This time the council will discuss lawsuits

Adjournment

If you want to stick around until after this secret meeting, Mayor Ryan Lukson will come out and say “meeting adjourned”. 

Randy’s Notes: a rundown on Tuesday’s Richland City Council agenda

New taxes and a new animal shelter

A discussion about the proposed new Tri-Cities Animal Shelter will begin the Richland City Council meeting at 5:00 p.m. on October 20. Note the earlier starting time. Before the coronavirus, supporters for a new shelter packed the council chamber. Information on how to watch the meeting and how to comment are at the top of the agenda. 

Page numbers after the items below correspond with the pages in the packet of information that goes with the agenda.

City Council Workshop:

  1. At 5:00 p.m. City Manager Cindy Reents will update the City Council with options for a new animal shelter. Pg. 5-21 Comments can be made during the public comment period.

City Council Regular Meeting – 6:00 p.m.

Welcome

Pledge of Allegiance

Approval of Agenda

Presentations

2. Extra Mile Day recognizes people and organizations that make positive change. Pg. 22-23

3. COVID-19 Update from City Manager Cindy Reents  pg.24

Public Hearing  Check the agenda for the instructions on how to comment for up to 3 minutes.

4. A proposal to increase the budget appropriation for new fire department radios, stormwater improvements in several locations, an emergency generator at the wastewater treatment plant and last but not least $560,000 to repurchase property from Energy Northwest will be discussed and comments heard. Pg. 36-40

5. Council will hear comments about the proposal to raise property taxes by 1%.  Pg. 45-54

6. If this proposal for a city surplus sale is approved, you can buy anything from a pickup truck to a front loader.  Pg. 144-148

Public Comments  Check the agenda for how you can have 2 minutes to comment.

Consent Calendar  These items receive little to no comment and one vote for all of them.

Minutes

7. Approval of the October 6, 2020 meeting minutes

Ordinances – First Reading

8. Increasing funding for fire department radios, stormwater facility maintenance, wastewater plant improvements and industrial development. This was discussed in the earlier public hearing, Item 4. Pg. 36-40

9. Potable water cannot be used for irrigation where non-potable water is available. A violation could result in your potable water service being discontinued.  Pg. 40-44

10. Property Taxes  to be increased by 1%.  Pg. 45-54

11. Property Taxes  Pg. 45-54

12. Property Taxes  Pg. 45-54

13. You’re not allowed to discharge a firearm in the city unless it’s at the airport and you’re shooting at animals that could crash an airplane.  But according to the airport officials, shooting is the last resort.  Pg. 55-58

14. If you want to repair your sidewalk and you fill out enough paperwork, the city will reimburse 25% of the costs.  If you don’t clear your sidewalk of snow, you could be in trouble.  Check the rules. Pg. 58-61

15. The definition of a potentially dangerous animal is amended to include an animal endangering someone “on the private property of another.” As written, the same behavior on public property would warrant declaring the animal as potentially dangerous, but no protections are afforded for the same conduct on the private property of another.  Pg. 62-66

16. There’s a deficiency in the definition of Second Degree Criminal Trespass. This remedies that by defining “premises” as “any real property (fenced or unfenced), vehicle, railway car, cargo container, or other similar structure.” This definition will eliminate ambiguity between second degree criminal trespass and first degree criminal trespass, which provides that it is unlawful for any person to knowingly enter or remain, unlawfully, in a building of another.  Pg. 67-69

17. The lodging tax charged to hotel guests and used for tourism promotion in the Tri-Cities will be increased from $2.00 to $3.00 a night. Pg. 70-72

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage

18. This authorizes a franchise agreement with New Cingular Wireless PCS, LLC d/b/a AT&T Mobility. It doesn’t give the company a monopoly and each project must be approved.  There was a hearing and the first reading during the October 6 meeting. Pg. 73-118

19. The unused right-of-way on Robertson Drive will be given to the adjacent property owner. This was the subject of a public hearing and first reading at the October 6 meeting. Pg. 119-123

20. Streets will now have classifications that match state and federal guidelines.  You might want to see where your street falls in these descriptions. Pg. 124-128

21. Zoning of 7.4 acres of the old motel site on Columbia Point Trail near the Steptoe roundabout will be changed from C-2 Retail Business to Limited Business (C-LB).  Pg. 129-143  

 Following are the definitions of the two designations;  

A. The limited business use district (C-LB) is a zone classification designed to provide an area for the location of buildings for professional and business offices, motels, hotels, and their associated accessory uses, and other compatible uses serving as an administrative district for the enhancement of the central business districts, with regulations to afford protection for developments in this and adjacent districts and in certain instances to provide a buffer zone between residential areas and other commercial and industrial districts. This zoning classification is intended to be applied to some portions of the city that are designated either commercial or high-density residential under the city of Richland comprehensive plan.

B. The neighborhood retail business use district (C-1) is a limited retail business zone classification for areas which primarily provide retail products and services for the convenience of nearby neighborhoods with minimal impact to the surrounding residential area. This zoning classification is intended to be applied to some portions of the city that are designated commercial under the city of Richland comprehensive plan. 

Resolutions – Adoption

22. You can buy a surplus truck from the city or a front loader.  Check out the list of available surplus here.  Pg. 144-148

23. The city will spend $664,172.52 for a metal clad switchgear for a new electrical substation to serve the Horn Rapids industrial area. Pg. 149-154

24. The police have received a $27, 500 grant for overtime pay from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission for a high visibility enforcement project.  High visibility enforcement (HVE) incorporates enforcement strategies, such as enhanced patrols using visibility elements (e.g. electronic message boards, road signs, command posts, BAT mobiles, etc.) designed to make enforcement efforts obvious to the public.  The grant goes from October 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021.  Pg. 155-175

Items – Approval

Expenditures – Approval

25. All the City expenditures from September 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021  for $33,279,719.14 are listed.   Pg. 175-225.

Items of Business

26. Council Assignments – The Mosquito Control Board will miss former Councilmember Brad Anderson but, alas, someone else will have to be our representative to that committee.  Now that Brad Anderson has resigned, the council assignments must be shifted around. Anderson’s other positions are now open as well.   Pg. 226-229

Reports and Comments

City Manager, City Council, Mayor – blah, blah, blah.

Executive Session

27. The council has a secret meeting for 30 minutes to discuss lawsuits.

Randy’s Notes: a rundown on Tuesday’s Richland City Council Agenda

Randy’s Picks:  Don’t miss No. 19, 21, 23, 24 and 25

Okay, folks Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. is the regularly scheduled Richland City Council meeting.  The information on how to watch the meeting and how to comment are at the top of the agenda.

Page numbers after the items below correspond with the pages in the packet of information that goes with the agenda.

1-2 The first item of business is the appointment and swearing in of Marianne Boring to the seat vacated by Brad Anderson. Pg. 5-8

3. Then, of course, Anderson must be thanked. Pg. 9-10

4. We can’t forget to thank David Larkin for serving on the Utility Advisory Committee since 2005 and Kim Shugart for serving on the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee since 2008, and Douglas Sako for serving on the Economic Development Committee since 2006.  Pg, 11-14.  Check out the Tri-Cities Observer for responses from Larkin and Sako about their service on these committees.

5. For more information about the Tri-Cities Regional Hotel-Motel Commission Annual Budget and Marketing Plan, we are instructed to look at Resolution 139-20.   If you find that Resolution, let me know.  Pg.15

6. The City Manager Cindy Reents presents her budget.  Be sure to check out pg. 16 for the schedule for public comment.  The budget has been discussed for weeks in “Special Workshops”.  Wait until you see the minutes for those that follow on the consent calendar.  The meetings are not available on video.  Again, Pg. 16

Public Hearings – you will receive 3 minutes to comment if you follow the rules on the agenda (the link is above).

7. The City is authorizing a non-exclusive agreement with New Cingular Wireless PCS, LLC d/b/a AT&T Mobility to use city right-of-ways for small wireless facilities.  The company must apply for permits for each of its projects. Pg. 33-78

8. The city will turn over unused right-of-way on Robertson Drive to the adjacent property owners. According to the report, “the property owner concurs with this proposal.” The owner listed on the property map in the packet died in March. Pg. 70-83

9. The homeowner at 1375 Kensington Way wants part of the unused city utility easement for a shed. Pg. 113-116

10. The Port of Benton and Richland Storage Partners LLC want a city easement within their property at 2705 Fermi Drive to facilitate new development. Pg. 129-132

PUBLIC COMMENT – you get 2 minutes.  Go to the agenda for the rules

Consent Calendar   Everything under “Consent Calendar” receives little discussion and one vote.  A councilmember can ask to have an item removed for discussion and a separate vote.

11. Meeting minutes:  The city council had 3 workshop meetings and 1 regular meeting and 1 special meeting (to pick Boring) between Sept. 8 and September 25.  The three workshops were to discuss the budget and each of those lasted almost 2 hours.  Go see what passes as minutes in Richland.  No videos have been made available. The Observer reported on the police and fire department budget presentations.  Pg. 21-32

Ordinances – First Reading (this is part of the Consent Calendar that receives one vote)

12. The agreement with New Cingular Wireless that was subject of the public hearing. Pg. 33-78

13. The unused right-of-way on Robertson Drive to be given to the adjacent property owner which was subject of the earlier public hearing.   Pg. 70-83

14. Streets will now have classifications to match state and federal guidelines.  You might want to see where your street falls in these descriptions.  Pg. 84-88.

Ordinances – Second Reading & Passage

15. Under an agreement with the county prosecutor the city can prosecute these: cyberstalking, criminal mistreatment – fourth degree, unlawful possession of a legend drug (dispensed by prescription only). It also adds a civil infraction for purchase or consumption of liquor by an intoxicated person. Pg. 89-104

16. Driveways in Industrial Districts can be this wide:  a one-way driveway can be 40 feet; a two-way driveway can be 100 feet.  They cannot exceed 40% of the property frontage.

17. Oops, when the city raised the ambulance transport fees in 2012, it did not amend the code.  This fixes that.

Resolutions – Adoption

18. This was the subject of the earlier public hearing.  The homeowner at 1375 Kensington Way wants part of the unused city utility easement for a shed.

19. It’s time for the periodic Shoreline Master Program review.  Anybody interested in this issue needs to look at the dates for public comment on Pg. 122.   Pg. 117-122

20. This establishes Dec. 1 for the public hearing for comments on annexing 8 acres on Shockley Road, the Zinsli Annexation Petition.  Pg. 123-126.

21. The waiver for using city-owned property or right-of-way, sidewalks, etc for outdoor dining is extended until December 31, 2020.

22. Giving up the easement at 2705 Fermi Drive, subject of earlier hearing.

23. $700,000 is available for utility payment relief until used up or until November 30, 2020.

Items – Approval

24. Appointment of Brad Bricker and Michael Simpson  to the Board of Adjustment.  This is the committee that Marianne Boring served on for about 20 years.  Bricker has been on the Economic Development Committee since 2013 and is currently chair.  His term there was up on Sept. 30.  Simpson has served on the Personnel Committee since 2019.  Simpson’s term on Personnel doesn’t end until 2022.  According to the information provided in the packet, 2 other people were interviewed for each of these positions.  Rather than allow other residents to participate, the city has chosen once again to let people serve on more than one committee. Pg. 136-138

Expenditures – Approval

(as of Oct. 3 no expenditures listed here)

Items of Business

25. Rezoning 7.4 acres of the old motel site on Columbia Point Trail near the Steptoe roundabout from C-2 Retail Business to Limited Business (C-LB).  Pg. 139-153 Following are the definitions of the two;  

A. The limited business use district (C-LB) is a zone classification designed to provide an area for the location of buildings for professional and business offices, motels, hotels, and their associated accessory uses, and other compatible uses serving as an administrative district for the enhancement of the central business districts, with regulations to afford protection for developments in this and adjacent districts and in certain instances to provide a buffer zone between residential areas and other commercial and industrial districts. This zoning classification is intended to be applied to some portions of the city that are designated either commercial or high-density residential under the city of Richland comprehensive plan.

B. The neighborhood retail business use district (C-1) is a limited retail business zone classification for areas which primarily provide retail products and services for the convenience of nearby neighborhoods with minimal impact to the surrounding residential area. This zoning classification is intended to be applied to some portions of the city that are designated commercial under the city of Richland comprehensive plan.

26. Hiring a consultant to evaluate City Manager Cindy Reents.

Reports and Comments:

Blah, blah, blah from mayor, council and city manager

Executive Session

The council can discuss in secret  “Lease or Purchase of Real Estate if Disclosure Would Increase Price. “  They plan to discuss this for 15 minutes and you can continue to watch and time it if you want to.  Mayor Lukson has to come out and say that the meeting has ended.

Randy’s Notes: the Rundown on Tuesday’s Richland City Council Agenda

(Disclosure: Randy Slovic, author of TriCities Observer, has applied to fill former Councilmember Brad Anderson’s seat on the Richland City Council.)

Here is the Richland City Council Agenda for September 15, 2020

The 157-page packet of information that I have summarized below.

If you want to comment, you need to click the yellow “here” on the agenda before 4:00 p.m. on September 15.

  1. City Manager Cindy Reents fills you in on COVID

PUBLIC HEARING if you clicked the yellow “here” as mentioned above before 4:00 p.m., you can comment for 3 minutes on this:

2.  The developers of Park Place Apartments at 650 George Washington Way moved the utilities and wants the city to give them the now unused utility easement for $10.

PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD if you clicked the yellow “here” and submitted your request before 4:00 p.m.  you have 2 minutes to say whatever you want.  However, be warned, you are NOT allowed to ask a question.

CONSENT CALENDAR – this means the council can go through these with little to no comment and vote for them all at once.

Approval of the September 1, 2020 City Council Regular Meeting Minutes

First Reading on these so they have to be voted on again at the next meeting in order to pass:

Ordinance 29-20   The City can exercise more control over misdemeanors or gross misdemeanors rather than refer them to the Benton County Prosecutor if the council amends the code to include:  cyberstalking, criminal mistreatment of children or dependent persons, unlawful possession of prescription drugs (legend drugs), purchase and consumption of alcohol by an intoxicated person.

Ordinance 30-20   Allowing industrial driveways to be 40 feet for one way and 100 feet for two ways.

Ordinance 31-20   Oops, the city did not amend the municipal code in 2012 when they raised the ambulance rates.  They will fix that with this.

Second Reading on these so they pass with this vote:

  1. Ordinance 27-20  The Richland police department receives $275,250 from the Seattle Police Department for a forensic van.  Seattle is the lead agency for the state and funding is for investigation and prosecution of internet crimes against children.
  2. Ordinance 28-20 You will need a permit to work in city Right-of-Ways.

Resolutions – Adoptions

  1. Resolution 124-20   the easement at 650 George Washington Way discussed above in No. 2 is here for a vote.
  2. Resolution 131-20   It will cost $4 million to extend the city sewer to North Horn Rapids.  To  pay for it, the City will receive $3.2 million dollars from the U.S. Economic Development Administration and the U.S. Covid Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.  The Port of Benton will provide $400,000 and the City of Richland will provide $400,000.  City funding was budgeted in the Industrial Development Fund.
  3. Resolution 132-20   Visit Tri-Cities Signage.  Booth and Sons submitted the lowest bid for the signs, $452,888.66
  4.  Resolution 133-20   Maintenance agreement with Friends of Badger Mountain for extending the trail system onto Little Badger Mountain.

Items Approval:

  1. Appointing Steve Lorence to the Personnel Committee until 2023.  He has been on the committee since 2018
  2. Appointing Brad Bricker, Ken Spencer, Theresa Richardson, and Kim Knight to the Economic Development Committee until 2023.  Bricker has served since 2013.
  3. Appointing Lindsay Lightner to the Library Board until 2025.  Lightner has served since 2019.
  4. Appointing Deborah Titus and Michele Levenite to the Americans with Disability Citizen Review Committee until 2023. Levenite has served since 2014.
  5. Appointing Lara Watkins and Andrew Lucero-Montano to the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee until 2022.  Lucero-Montano has serviced on the committee since 2018.

Expenditures – Approval

  1. $28,384,167.33 of checks for the month of August for salaries, pensions and other expenditures. The check list goes from page 90 to 132 in the packet.

ITEMS OF BUSINESS

  1. Ordinance no 21-20 to restrict parking on Hains Avenue to one side of the street.  The Council will vote on this ordinance since it is not on the consent calendar.

Councilmembers will now comment

EXECUTIVE (SECRET) SESSION

20 minutes to discuss potential litigation

60 minutes to discuss the qualifications of a candidate for appointment to elective office [60 minutes for “a” candidate out of 33 who applied].