Topics of Interest and Updates
Legislative Session Successful for Lakewood
Following the longest single-year session in history, the City of Lakewood ended up accomplishing every one of its goals by the time the Washington State Legislature adjourned July 10. As part of the negotiations that took 176 days to complete, the Legislature passed a $16.1 billion transportation package that includes projects in the Puget Sound and across the state.
In Lakewood, it means some of the City’s most pressing needs – especially unclogging the regular traffic mess on the I-5/JBLM corridor – will finally be addressed. Before the legislative session began in January, the City of Lakewood developed an ambitious legislative agenda in the hopes that some of the items would be accomplished and others would create momentum for the future.
Lakewood’s local state legislators embraced the City’s agenda and decided to help include each and every objective into the budget. By the time the Legislature adjourned, its budget included all of the City of Lakewood’s requests. It’s rare – especially during these unsure financial times – for a state Legislature to check off all of the items on a local government’s legislative agenda.
“Overall, the City of Lakewood had a very successful session,” Lakewood Mayor Don Anderson said. “It starts with collaboration and we saw a great deal of that among South Sound legislators. We would like to thank our 28th and 29th District legislators who pushed for improvements that will make the region, the state and our city better places to live.”
Here’s a breakdown of Lakewood’s priorities that the Legislature addressed.
City Council Recognizes Outgoing JBLM Commander Hodges
At the July 20 Lakewood City Council meeting, the City Council read a proclamation recognizing retiring Joint Base Lewis-McChord Commander Col. H. Charles Hodges Jr.
The Colonel helped build a special relationship with the base’s host community. Hodges worked with the City toward meeting common goals and created an open line of communication. It was his commitment, in fact, to engage with the communities.
Mayor Don Anderson even showed a clip from the “Sustainable JBLM” series of videos that Hodges made to encourage sustainable practices on base. He and Anderson also traded anecdotes, including the friendly wager Anderson (an Oregon fan) and Hodges (a Florida State fan) made before this year’s college football national championship.
Hodges will relocate to the East Coast next month. The City of Lakewood thanks Col. Hodges for his commitment to working with, as well as make stronger, the relationship between Lakewood and JBLM.
Lakewood Apartment Manager Recognized For Heroics During Fire
The West Pierce Board of Fire Commissioners recognized a Lakewood apartment manager for his selflessness and quick thinking during a June fire.
Dave Sanders of Lakewood received a Life Saver Citizen Award for his heroic acts during the apartment fire in Tillicum. Sanders is manager at the Union Crest Apartments and helped residents get down from the second story of the complex with a ladder. The fire engulfed the second story and destroyed all units in the building.
“Without Mr. Sanders’ quick actions and assistance, West Pierce Fire & Rescue could have had a more severe or even tragic outcome from this incident,” according to the Fire District.
Sanders was one of two individuals – the other being WPFR Firefighter/Paramedic Bryson Lane, who helped save a man involved in an auto accident who was not breathing – recognized by the WPFR Board of Commissioners on Tuesday.
“It was an honor to recognize these two individuals. An average citizen such as Mr. Sanders stepping up to help others in need and Bryson stopping to render aid while off-duty truly reflects the spirit of our community members and our firefighters, “ Chief Jim Sharp said.
LASA Prairie Oaks Ribbon-Cutting
On July 20, 2015, several Lakewood officials attended the ribbon-cutting for the LASA Prairie Oaks campus on Gravelly Lake Drive.
The event featured a list of officials with different government agencies that helped the campus become a reality. That included City Manager John Caulfield and Congressman Denny Heck. Also in attendance were past and present elected Lakewood officials: Mayor Don Anderson, City Councilmember Marie Barth, Mayor Emeritus Bill Harrison, former Mayor (and current Pierce County Councilmember) Doug Richardson and former City Councilmember Helen McGovern.
The campus includes 15 units of permanent supportive housing for families with disabilities. and a Client Services Center. The event included several speakers and a pair of religious blessings. The City has posted photos of the event on its Facebook page.
West Pierce CERT Registration
West Pierce Fire & Rescue is currently taking registrations for the September Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) classes for those who live or work within Lakewood and University Place.
This free, 20-hour course teaches citizens how to prepare for and respond to disasters or extreme emergencies. Classes begin on Sept. 15 and are held on Tuesday and Thursday evenings for three weeks from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., and culminate in a practical exercise to be held on Saturday, Oct. 3 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Classes will be held at West Pierce Fire & Rescue and taught by firefighters and paramedics who are subject matter experts. The course is limited to 25 students and there are no prerequisites, other than a desire to learn and help others. Read more
Business Showcase: RAM Restaurant & Brewery
For customers in the Puget Sound or Midwest who are starved for great food, beer and atmosphere, chances are the letters “R,” “A,” and “M” will beckon to their calling.
The RAM Restaurant and Brewery has more than 30 locations in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Colorado, Illinois and Indiana. Soon, the folks in Ohio will get a RAM of their own.
The restaurant has grown into a semi-national brand on the strength of its award-winning beer, great cuisine and 2,000-plus team members/owners who take pride in serving guests.
But for those of us in Lakewood, there’s another sense of pride – one that comes with knowing no matter how popular the RAM ultimately becomes, it all began here in our community.
“The whole thing started in Lakewood,” said Mark Patterson, who started out as a server at the Lakewood location in 1989 and today is a Regional Leader for the company. “It’s our home.”
For its exponential success and commitment to our community, the City of Lakewood is proud to recognize The RAM Restaurant and Brewery as its July Business Showcase.
Read the RAM’s full story.
Parks and Recreation
SummerFEST Triathlon Video
The City has posted its official video of the 2015 SummerFEST Triathlon on its YouTube channel, which took place July 11 at American Lake Park and Fort Steilacoom Park. The fast-paced look supplies viewers with some of the best sights and sounds from the extremely popular event.
The City Council will be holding a study session on Monday, July 27, 2015, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000Main Street SW. Agenda items for the meeting include:
- Abatement program update
- Development Services cost recovery review
- Review of rental housing inspection program timeline
- Reports by the City Manager – Lodging Tax Funding Guidelines
The City Council will be holding a regular meeting on Monday, August 3, 2015, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in the City Hall Council Chambers located at 6000 Main Street SW. Agenda items for the meeting include:
- Clover Park School District Report
- Appoint members to Public Safety Advisory Committee
- Appoint 2015-2016 Youth Council members and Lakewood’s Promise Youth Council Representative
- Public Hearing on vacating Bridgeport Way and Lakewood Drive R-O-W
- Public Hearing on vacating a portion of 100th Street SW R-O-W
- Approve agreement on Lakewood’s Promise program
- Approve a joint construction agreement with Century Link re: trenching on Lakewood Drive