After have a Monday off for the Labor Day holiday, Council reconvened on Sept. 11th for a short legislative agenda. The highlights were: 1. accepting several grants to invest in a DUI Candidate Court and part of a police officer to do DUI emphasis (7-0); and 2. declaring the City of Spokane’s intent to work with the County to better integrate 911 Emergency Communications.
I also gave a report from our Public Works Committee that highlighted the emerging recommendations for a new snow plan to be adopted in October, as well as an update on an water intertie agreement with Medical Lake that the City has been working on.
On Monday, Sept. 18th, Council held the last town hall meeting of the year at the Northeast Community Center. This was bittersweet for me, as the neighborhoods that I work with so closely were represented there and it was last time to see all of them in one room before I term out of City Council at the end of this year! I was very proud of all the good work that District 1 neighborhoods have accomplished in the past year, especially the HUGE amount of solid waste and trash that two neighborhoods in particular were able to haul away. Kudos to Minnehaha and Logan for some very well-organized dumpster events. The other major topic of discussion was place-making and planning in neighborhoods to be impacted by the North-South Corridor development over the next 8 years.
Could did take action after the Town Hall on some legislative items. One in particular was sponsored by me: creating a utility fee credit for nonprofit providers of long-term housing for developmentally disabled persons. I worked on this for about 2 months with housing providers. It is so important that we provide an opportunity for those with developmental disabilities to live as independently as possible so as to have productive lives and engage with their neighbors. This utility credit will most likely impact about 50 housing units in the City where there is not increase coming from the State to keep these folks housed. I’m hoping this small credit will at least keep the utility costs steady and keep these housing units affordable.