Council AM Recap 12/1/2015: Letter to the Mayor and Cincinnati Greenway Project
At last night’s council meeting, the council passed a letter asking the Mayor and Theresa Sanders to respond to questions we have regarding the handling of a complaint of sexual harassment against former the Chief of Police. As public records related to the incident have emerged in the last few days, serious questions have been raised as to the timing of their release of public records, what the scope of the investigation into the sexual harassment complaint entailed and what was done to ensure the safety and security of other potentially impacted employees during and after the investigation. The letter raises all these questions and further requests the Mayor to send a copy of the agreement between the City of Spokane and Judge Michael Hogan, who the Mayor announced yesterday as the independent investigator charged with looking into this incident, be made public. The council requested that the Mayor respond by December 11, 2015. The vote was unanimous. You can see the letter in full here.
The Council (as the Transportation Benefit District Board) also passed funding recommendations from the Citizens Transportation Advisory Board (CTAB) for street repair and maintenance. The TBD funds come from the $20 car tab fee instituted by council several years ago, and each year CTAB makes an annual report with recommendations for the next year. I made a motion to add one project to the list: $500,000 for the design and construction of the Cincinnati Greenway Pilot Project. This project has been in limbo for years despite the considerable work done in creating the proposals. The motion was approved and the full list of funding recommendations was passed on a 6-1 vote (with Councilmember Fagan voting against).
Other actions council took last night included: a resolution outlining traffic calming projects from our Photo Red program for the upcoming construction cycle, adding foster children to the definition of household under our municipal code to clarify and align our code with state and federa law, an ordinance amending the process of selecting an interim Ombudsperson, an ordinance relating to inclement weather centers for homeless individuals and families in the City of Spokane, an ordinance amending the boundaries of our Community Empowerment Zone and recommended allocations of lodging tax revenue to the Spokane Public Facilities district. All of these items were passed unanimously. The council also approved a right of way vacation in the Chief Garry Park Neighborhood on the condition that the developer include a traffic barrier that restricts to restrict turn movements on Mission for safety.