Fremont Neighborhood Council Meeting – March 24, 2014
Board members present: Stephanie Pure, Toby Thaler, Matt Gasparich, Shawn Mulanix, Norma Jones, Erik Pihl, Jim Engelhardt, Linda Clifton, Judie Clarridge.
Stephanie opened the meeting and invited everyone to introduce themselves and share any announcements:
Stone Way and N. 41st Crossing Update: Stephanie provided a re-cap of the pedestrian safety concerns at this intersection.
King County Proposition 1 – Larry Phillips, King County Councilmember, District 4
Councilmember Phillips spoke on behalf of the upcoming (April 22) ballot measure. Because the state legislature has not passed a transportation bill,KingCountyis bringing the proposition to the voters to provide funding for continued Metro service (60%) and for cities to use for transit, transportation improvements, roads, etc. (40%). If it does not pass, there will be a huge cut in Metro service.
He reviewed the effortsKingCountyhas made in the last 5 years in efficiencies, lowering labor costs, etc. which have staved off a reduction in service up to this point. User costs have increased. By next year, transit fares will have increased 100% over the last 5 years.
The proposition calls for a $40 increase in car tab fees. They are currently $20 and will increase to $60 annually. It also calls for a 1/10 of 1% increase in the sales tax. If passed, it will raise $130 million annually for 10 years.
There is also a provision for establishing a low income fare for transit riders and a rebate on the cost of car tabs for low income vehicle owners. There was a question raised about how this provision would be implemented. Larry said that they do not have the specifics worked out yet but they do not want a system with high administrative costs.
There was discussion about the regressive nature of the increase in car tab fees. Larry said that the Council explored a variety of funding options but could not find another alternative that would provide the amount of money needed quickly enough to maintain Metro service. There were questions raised about a long term plan. Phillips said that there is a “swap out” provision in the proposition that would allow the County to replace the car tab / sales tax funding sources with less regressive ones within the 10 year period that the proposition covers. For more information see http://metro.kingcounty.gov/am/future.
MOTION: Linda moved that the Fremont Neighborhood Council endorse Proposition 1. Erik seconded. Motion passed.
The FNC will publicize the ballot measure on the website, Facebook, etc.
Feet First – Lisa Quinn, Executive Director
Lisa gave an overview of the organization which works to ensure that Washingtoncommunities are walkable. The Walking School Bus program connects students with an adult who walks with them to school. The organization supports Greenways. They advocate for safe routes to school. There was discussion about the Stone Wayand N. 41st crosswalk and the criteria for installing a traffic light.
BANK ACCOUNT SIGNERS: Stephanie said that she contacted BECU about the change in signers on the accounts. The change is necessary because of former FNC Treasurer Kevin McClain’s move toAustralia and the Board’s appointment of Jim Engelhardt as the new Treasurer. Stephanie was advised that the Board needed to state that it wants the changes made.
MOTION: Erik moved that Kevin McClain’s name be removed as a signer on the FNC accounts at BECU because he resigned from the Treasurer position and has moved toAustralia. Further, that Jim Engelhardt, FNC Treasurer, be named as a signer on the FNC accounts at BECU. Norma seconded. Motion passed.
LAND USE AND TRANSPORTATION COMMITTEE: Toby said that the Department of Planning and Development is accepting comments on what aspects of the environment should be considered in preparing the EIS for alternative approaches to the location and form of growth over the next 20 years. This is part of Seattle 2035. There is a scoping meeting this evening. Comments are accepted through April 21st and Toby said that the FNC needs to prepare a letter.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING, APRIL 28: There was discussion about whether the current officers and board members want to stay on the board. Also, the board discussed possible speakers for the meeting. Stephanie will contact City Councilmembers Nick Licata first and Mike O’Brien next.
TRAFFIC SIGNAL BOXES: It was reported that there is graffiti on two of the Traffic Signal Boxes recently painted by Urban Artworks. We need to report the graffiti to Urban Artworks because our contract with them includes a year of graffiti removal. There was discussion about including a longer period of maintenance when the FNC contracts for additional boxes to be painted.
MINUTES: Norma moved that the minutes from the January and February meetings be approved as presented. Toby seconded. Motion passed.
The meeting was adjourned. The next meeting will be the Annual General Meeting on April 28, 2014.