26 May 2021 Council Study Session

New 5-year landscape co. contract for City; new 10-year plan for Water System; public hearings for two DCD proposed ordinances re 1) property line adjustments & easier subdivision and 2) allowing 19′ double-wide manufactured homes, down from 25′ wide; Old Kitsap Way in District Seven gets a planning study. Lodging Tax has $100K to spend this year, will support struggling small businesses and (we hope!) events. Attempt was made by majority of Council to shorten the very long recent meetings. It failed.

My comments: A) recruitment for new landscape contractor doesn’t seem to have reached out to minority or women-owned businesses. Also, guy at Pendergast 5/26 morning was applying some blue fluid, probably herbicide as it was spewing from a nozzled container, to vegetation along curb and in sidewalk cracks. B) Really proud of our city that Water Dept is preparing for effects of climate change and continuing to work hard to keep our watershed intact so we don’t have to filter our water.  C) The manufactured homes still don’t have to meet our building codes, like insulation etc. They’ll just be narrower so you can fit more of them on a subdivided parcel or a very small city lot.

Re meeting length: Simpson regularly moves items to General Business over very small changes, e.g., “may” vs. “shall” in one sub-sub-section. This makes meetings much longer, like last week’s 5hrs 18mins. Several Councilors tell him what was done historically, i.e., small changes were made by staff, placed in the packet available to the public, put on Consent Agenda unless change hadn’t been addressed. Compromises were proposed. Simpson stands his ground. It only takes one Councilor to move an item to General Business. Meetings will continue to run long.

A. BRIEFINGS on AGENDA BILL ITEMS

1. Renewal of Pollution Liability Insurance with Hartford Insurance Company

We’ve used Hartford before, never for this. Good price & coverage. Consent Agenda.

2. Accept Surface Transportation Grant from the Puget Sound Regional Council; and approve WSDOT Local Agency Agreement for the West Kitsap Way Planning Study

Katie Ketterer presents: we’re studying a redo of the old Kitsap Way in District Seven. Moved to General Business.

3. Professional Services Agreement with LNS Engineers, Inc. for the Downtown Library HVAC Systems Project Item postponed until June 9

4. Goods & Services Agreement with At-Work Commercial Enterprise, LLC for Landscape Maintenance & Services

Wayne Hamilton presents: our former contractor wasn’t performing, so City had to cancel their contract around Jan 1 2021. This is a replacement. Full bid process took 5+ months. The contract before the Council is the same 21 locations as in the previous contract. Cost slightly lower than old contract. Daugs asks questions that elicit most of this: she asks about herbicide/pesticide use, Hamilton will get back to her (I saw chemicals being applied to sidewalk & curb this morning at Pendergast). Sullivan: This is a 5-year contract with a 2-year extension that can be approved by Dir of DPW only, no need to go before Council, yes? Hamilton will get back to her, but this has been approved by legal, and we always try to go through legal. Lubovich thinks contract needs to be rewritten. Sullivan wants language struck as all contracts above $25K must come before Council. Simpson: In favor of changing language per Sullivan’s objection. He explains what the contract is and what Sullivan’s suggestions were. He asks about 2 of the contract locations, Hamilton looks them up on the map from the Council’s agenda packet. Simpson appreciates Hamilton’s comments, and appreciates that DPW did oversight on previous contractor — he explains what oversight is, and how it resulted in a search for new contract, and praises DPW in doing the oversight and finding a new contractor. I think this was moved to Consent Agenda.

5. Briefing on Water System Plan Update (Information only…)

Cami Apfelbeck presents: they’ll identify present & future needs; set forth the means to address these needs, and demonstrate to the public and to the state that we have the operational technical managerial and financial capacity
and capability to run a water system in compliance with all relevant regulations. Chaps 1-7 are done, Chaps 8-10 are in process: system analysis (are we getting the water where it needs to go and is it of drinking water quality everywhere). This informs Chaps 9 & 10: capital improvement plan (what we need to fix & what it’ll take), and financial plan (how we’ll pay for it). There are also a bunch of updates to interlocal agreements, plans for monitoring, efficiency, contingency & assessment of risk/resilience, protection and control of watershed and wellheads. This new update is a 10-year plan (4 years more than previous maximum planning length) with 10- and 20-year planning horizons. It’ll consolidate some parts of the system that were previously separate: main, W517Z, and Rocky Point (now part of Bremerton!). Big changes since 2012: corrosion control re-optimization (test for corrosion on the specific pipe materials existing & planned — a response to Flint MI water disaster). and replaces gas chlorine with liquid hypochlorite. 80 years ago, the City started disinfecting water with the dangerous & volatile gas chlorine, now using liquid hypochlorite, safer & thus less regulated. Boosts pH of our water which reduces corrosion: win-win. She details small parcels here and there where boundaries or jurisdiction have changed since 2012. 10% reduction in water demand! So yay, water conservation working. They are planning changes due to climate change, e.g., more wildfires, more tree disease, less rainfall to the reservoir. New regs coming to change lead and copper rules (as of 7/2020) and WA PFAS (poly fluoro alkaloids), projected to be finalized in late 2021. Protecting and securing the watershed more important now that development is closer and closer to the watershed. Working to make the system more energy efficient, as always. We used to figure we could get new water sources and water rights. Now, not so much. We have to shift to planning for water reclamation/reuse to make the most of our existing water and associated water rights. They’ll have the draft done by end of June or so, then submitted to DOH which has 3 months to review. DOH, of course, is having huge backlogs what with the pandemic and all, so hoping to have DOH approved plan for Council by end of year.

Discussion follows. Simpson: Our watershed is one of the more important things that we have. He explains that and why it is some more. Cami explains we have to protect the watershed to protect our unfiltered water. Building a filtration plant would cost $15-$20M just to build, let alone staff and maintain (up to $1M/year). So citations go to people hiking, biking, and other recreational use. Even light use can lower water quality to levels where we’d have to build a plant. Gorman proposes that we find other recreational areas for prospective hikers & bikers etc. so they’ll leave the wilderness alone. Cami is looking at other City-owned areas, far from the watershed, that could be used for recreation — she becomes forestry mgr as well as head of Water Dept next week when Malinka retires. [Info only, so no discussion]

6. Proposed Public Hearing on Ordinance to amend Title 20 of the Bremerton Municipal Code related to Boundary Line Adjustments and Lot Size Averaging

Andrea Spencer on hand as Kelli Lambert, Senior Planner, presents. Andrea: “With Allison’s departure, you’ll see more of my people”.[Wait. What? Allison Satter leaving?] Lot size averaging makes it easier to subdivide as long as average lot size is below max allowed density. For example, on a 1/2 ac. lot, you now have 2 homes; with current regs, you can get 8; with new regs, you can get 10. [Cars will.be hung from enormous sky hooks? Kitsap Transit will begin running buses 7 days a week, more often than once an hour?] Boundary Line adjustments exist in all neighboring cities – gives people a process to adjust their boundary lines, e.g., they’ve built a house & find it’s 2′ over the line, they want to buy a 2′ strip from their neighbor but now there’s no process, just file with Kitsap Co. This makes utilities disjuncts, as you can imagine. Daugs: Why don’t we have a BLA? Spencer: We don’t have a BLA because developers freaked out when B’ton in 2005 adopted any code to cover subdivisions – had been state code only – so BLA was jettisoned. Legal notice scheduled, Public Hearing will be 2 June. Sullivan: Am I grandfathered in? Answer: Yes. Simpson: Wants to eliminate oversight by DCD as long as two property owners agree and it meets all the criteria. “It’s a property rights issue.” Spencer: Where utilities might be affected, which property owners wouldn’t know, DCD needs oversight. Sullivan: Objects to the use of “shall” to require DCD oversight as long as two property owners agree and it meets all the criteria. Younger: Finds the City’s proposed criteria would make these agreements / disputes run more smoothly. Daugs elicits Spencer’s professional opinion that the City has to have oversight, not only for utilities, but also to make sure that no one ends up with a lot that can’t be developed. Simpson repeats his objections in three different ways because “in this litigious society shall” vs “may” is very, very big end of spectrum”. Spencer points out that there has never been an instance where a permit applicant who complies with all conditions is denied a permit. She asks what page he’s on. He repeats his objections two more times. Spencer says they’ll review with Lubovich. Simpson repeats what she’s said. He makes his objection again. “I certainly appreciate the work on that.” Goodnow: May and shall are very specific in the shipyard, so I understand Mike’s objection. We want to serve the public. Spencer: Doesn’t understand why she’s denied the flexibility to say No by changing the language in section B. Sullivan: Was looking at the memo, not the proposed ordinance, so she withdraws her objections. Younger: Has no objections, but would like Spencer to email the relevant portion of code referred to. Will vote on proposed public hearing on 2 June. Moved to General Business per Simpson may vs. shall.

7. Proposed Public Hearing on Ordinance to amend Section 20.46.040 of the Bremerton Municipal Code related to Manufactured Homes

Kelli Lambert presents: Now, you can only put a new manufactured home on.a permanent foundation with all code as for single-family homes except for roof pitch and siding materials, which can differ. State code doesn’t permit City to regulate manufactured homes in ANY other way than those two things AND size can change. Right now, must be a double-wide. Proposing 12’W reduce to 9.5’W as dimension of each half of the double-wide, total new allowable minimum width is 19′ instead of 24′. Length will remain at 36′. Younger asks a really good question about new UBI which requires more insulation – Lambert says it exempts manufactured homes. Spencer says state L&I  regulates them, we would not. Also tells Younger that you could even have a 5′-wide permanent home if it met the building codes. Simpson asks if anyone makes these narrower double-wides. Gorman clarifies difference between modular and manufactured homes. Two topics for DCD to research: manufacturers of narrower double-wides & what requirements nearby jurisdictions have. On this basis, Simpson wants this put on General Business, as “things get overlooked”.

Gorman circles back to Simpson’s insistence that Item 6 be moved to General Business because length of meetings has been getting much longer. Simpson says every time there’s any question about any part of an agenda item, he will move it be brought to General Business because things get overlooked. Daugs, Gorman, and Younger all point out that historically, if a small point needs to be fixed, it is put into the packet and the item moved to Consent Agenda. Moved to General Business per Simpson who wants the results of the two research points presented to the public.

B. GENERAL COUNCIL BUSINESS

o Race Equity Advisory Committee Monthly Briefing – Chair Leslie Daugs

Daugs announces the BIPOC Economic Forum on 10 June, instead of regular meeting.

o Public Works Committee Monthly Briefing – Vice Chair Kevin Gorman

6th St preservation, from Warren to Pacific, will come before Council shortly. Several capital projects are ongoing.

o Finance, Investment & Parking Committee Monthly Briefing – Chair Michael Goodnow

Treasury Report on our investments etc. revealed no real new points. Sales tax was surprisingly up this past month. Navy is working on a 50-50 split in our utility contract with them. Proposed that profits from red-light cameras would go directly to Streets Fund. Gorman prefers the $$ go to street calming – Younger says this could come out of the Streets Fund. This proposal will be moved to June 23rd study session.

o Lodging Tax Advisory Committee Request for Proposal Guidelines – Chair Michael Goodnow

This committee needs direction. They have $100K that they can either give to the City or they can give it to orgs the LTAC typically supports, in addition to Admiral Theater, Conference Center, etc. Everybody likes this, but Simpson proposes 80-20 split businesses/City as “a kind of housekeeping deal”. Younger thinks supporting our business is the way to go. Simpson gives a thumbs-up after Younger speaks. Goodnow wants to preserve the percentage of money that goes to each existing business. There might be events later this year, so he proposes keeping some of the money back for events that help with recovery. Younger wants Goodnow’s committee to handle it, but advises that PPE and other Covid relief funds may complicate not only who needs what, but who might find themselves in tax trouble by receiving extra $$. Consensus: Goodnow and Christine will handle the committee as they see fit.

o Other General Council Business

Sullivan: re moving items to General Business for small changes — if a Councilor wants to move an item, they have the right to do it, right up to the minute the general meeting starts. Would Simpson approve this? No. He would not. Robert’s Rules of Order lets him do it. He’s going to. Goodnow: When staff says they’ll make a small change, it can go to Consent Agenda. If they fail to, it goes to General Business. Gorman agrees, thinks it’s a good process. No change in Simpson’s decision.

C. ADJOURNMENT OF STUDY SESSION and so it came to an end at 7:35pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s