"Tacoma City Council Agenda News for Tuesday, March 28, 2000"

“Tacoma City CouncilStudy SessionNoon, Tuesday March 28Room 16, Municipal Building North728 St. Helens AvenueTacoma$5 Million in Federal FundsNearly 70 Tacoma organizations applied for federal grant money this year. During the study session, Urban Policy Committee Chair Scott Alexander will present the committee’s recommendations for dividing up approximately $5 million in Department of Housing and Urban Development funds. In all, the committee will recommend allocating grant money to 38 organizations.Each year, HUD provides funding for thousands of community development and housing projects through Community Development Block Grants, HOME Investment Partnership funds and Emergency Shelter grants. HUD gives the money to local governments that decide how to spend those funds in their communities.This year, Tacoma partnered with the City of Lakewood to secure HOME Investment Partnership funds to support homeownership and rental assistance programs in that community. The Council will conduct a public hearing on the funding allocations at 5:30 p.m. April 25, with plans to vote at a later meeting.Also at the March 28 study session the Council will review the agenda for the strategic plan workshop scheduled for March 31 and April 1 at the University of Washington Tacoma.Tacoma City CouncilCouncil Meeting5:00 p.m., Tuesday March 28Room 16, Municipal Building North728 St. Helens AvenueTacomaDowntown Drive-through BanThe Council will consider putting Tacoma’s ban on drive-through businesses along Pacific Avenue back in place. The Council will vote on a regulation that would prohibit businesses such as drive-through restaurants, drugstores, and banks within 100 feet of Tacoma’s Link light rail route.The City has enforced a ban on drive-through uses on the busiest sections of the Pacific Avenue corridor between South Ninth Street and South 25th Street since 1991.The Council asked the Planning Commission to take a second look at drive-through uses in one section along Pacific Avenue when it adopted Destination Downtown, the new downtown zoning code that includes plans for development surrounding the Tacoma Link light rail line, last December. The Planning Commission has reiterated its earlier stance by advocating a drive-through use ban on streets served by the light rail.The two streets impacted by the proposed regulations are Pacific Avenue from South 15th to South 17th streets and South 25th Street from Pacific Avenue to the Tacoma Dome Station. If the Council adopts the recommendations, restrictions on all streets along the light rail route will be consistent.Foss Dock GrantVisiting boaters may be able to dock outside of the International Museum of Glass on the Thea Foss Waterway by the year 2002 if all goes as planned.A $750,000 state Interagency Committee for Outdoor Recreation grant before the Council for a vote would be applied toward creating 30 new slips near old Albers Mill, reconstruction of a dilapidated 240-foot-long wharf and building other boaters’ facilities such as picnic tables and limited restroom, shower and laundry facilities nearby.The state grant combined with federal grant money of nearly $342,000 and City contributions of $142,000 will pay for the project. The site will likely require additional environmental cleanup and work on the planned esplanade.Albers Mill stands at 1821 Dock Street abutting the International Museum of Glass site.The Council took public testimony on the grant last week and plans to vote during this meeting whether to accept the state grant. If approved, construction of the new boat slips could begin in 2001.INS Detention FacilityTacoma may get an Immigration and Naturalization Service, or INS, detention facility at 1623 East J Street. Under a resolution up for comment and a vote at this meeting the Council would express support for the facility and direct the city manager to pursue attracting an INS sub-district office to Tacoma.Correctional Services Corporation, a private company that operates correctional facilities throughout the country, submitted a proposal to the INS to build the facility. The facility would house aliens prior to their deportation.The INS facility would have the latest security measures and reportedly would not hold high-risk individuals.The detention facility would bring more than $40 million in new investment and reportedly hundreds of family-wage jobs to Tacoma.Strategic Plan MeetingThe council will conduct a strategic plan workshop Friday, March 31, and Saturday, April 1 at the University of Washington Tacoma.Tacoma’s strategic plan outlines the Council’s policy direction for City government, establishes a vision for the community and identifies how local government will utilize its staff time, energy and money. The current strategic plan focuses on four elements: economic development, public safety, neighborhood enhancement and government performance.At the workshop the Council will review the core elements of the plan and propose refinements and directions as appropriate. It will also explore and analyze future trends and opportunities that could significantly impact Tacomans’ quality of life and the City’s ability to deliver cost-effective municipal services.The Friday session is scheduled from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m. The session on Saturday will begin at 8:00 a.m. and conclude at 12:30 p.m.The Council will meet both days in the Tacoma Room in the third floor of the Academic Building at the UWT, 1900 Commerce Street.Citizens will have an opportunity in June to comment on proposed changes to the strategic plan.”