Pierce County News

1. Crime-fighting technology grant announced

Crime-fighting technology grant announced Law enforcement officers in unincorporated Pierce County and the cities of Tacoma and Puyallup will soon receive cutting edge communications equipment for drug interdiction and other crime-fighting operations. The equipment will be purchased with proceeds from a $986,643 federal technology grant announced today by U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell.

Cantwell worked with Pierce County Executive John Ladenburg, Tacoma Mayor Bill Baarsma, Puyallup Mayor Kathy Turner and their law enforcement agencies in applying for and winning the U.S. Department of Justice award. “Technology has made our businesses and homes better, and now it will be used to make them safer, too. Police officers can’t be everywhere at once, but this grant is going to help make neighborhoods safer around the clock,” Cantwell said.

The grant dollars will allow the Tacoma-Pierce County Law Enforcement Support Agency to coordinate selection and development of technology for wireless remote video and audio monitoring of selected high crime areas.
The Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, Tacoma Police Department and Puyallup Police Department are planning a pilot program using mobile wireless video, audio and text-messaging systems. The program would allow the agencies to increase drug interdiction efforts and also to focus enforcement activities on high crime areas.

“The effort funded by the grant can potentially provide advance detection of perilous conditions without having to be on scene or before arrival. The new equipment would allow the agencies to have close-up or advance views, enhancing their ability to efficiently and safely deploy officers,” said John Pirak, LESA Director.

The system will be designed to be used in both urban and rural settings, along roads and highways, and across bodies of water. Crime data, video, audio and text messaging will enable decision makers to speed coordination while restoring safety and security.

2. Citizens invited to Mid-County Communities Plan Open House

Collins, Summit View and Summit-Waller communities will have an opportunity March 9 to provide input in the community planning process that is moving forward for their area. The Mid-County Communities Plan Open House will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. that day at the Mid-County Community Center, 10205 44th Ave. E.

The Open House will be conducted by the Mid-County Communities Planning Board and Pierce County Planning and Land Services. “This is an opportunity for citizens to review the community plan recommendations made to date,” said Brynn Brady, senior planner.

The Planning Board is composed of citizens representing a variety of interests from the Summit-Waller, North Clover Creek Collins, and Summit View communities. Board members and County staff will be on hand to answer questions and take comments regarding tough issues related to land use, the natural environment, economic development, community character, and public facilities and services.

3. Everything’s free at Sprinker Recreation Center Open House

Pierce County Parks and Recreation is inviting the public to visit Sprinker Recreation Center Sunday, March 6 and use the facilities free of charge.
An Open House will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and all facilities and services – including four public ice skating sessions — will be available at no charge.

“This is a way we can express thanks to the young people and adults who come to Sprinker throughout the year,” said Recreation Supervisor Scott Hall. “It’s also an opportunity to showcase the facility to others in the community who haven’t visited.”

Sprinker is a 35-acre regional recreation complex offering indoor and outdoor activities and facilities, including indoor tennis and racquetball courts, ice arena and meeting rooms. Outdoor facilities include fields for baseball, fastpitch and slowpitch softball, soccer and football, horseshoe pits, pickleball and basketball courts and a practice mountain climbing rock. A skateboard park will open later this

The Open House will include ice skating, tennis lessons and exhibitions, classes and contests – all free. Kids’ activities include face painting, art projects and t-ball and soccer challenges.

For additional information, go to http://www.piercecountywa.org/parks and click on “Open House” or call 253-798-4000.