St. Valentine’s Day Party
Approximately 250 seniors festively dressed in red and white attire attended the annual St. Valentine’s Day party held at the Pioneer Park Pavilion and hosted by the Activity Center. Entertainment was provided by the ever-popular performance group, Fun Singers and the Sa’Diyah Dancers. The party included a catered lunch, a large assortment of beautifully decorated cakes and everyone received a Valentine’s Day box of chocolates. In addition, several hundred pounds of food was collected for the Puyallup Food Bank.
Construction Standards Manual Update
At the end of 2017, the City assembled a Standards Manual Review Group composed of key staff members from the City’s Engineering, Public Works, and Development Services Departments tasking them with collaboratively updating the Public Works Engineering & Construction Standards Manual. The goal of the standards manual update is to improve the consistency and quality of the minimum standards for construction of public improvements. To date, the City has revised and published Section 300 – Water System Standard Details, included an additional pre-approved product for manhole frame and covers, and launched a revised webpage layout to aid in the distribution and access of City standards to the public. The Standards Review Group is currently reviewing and updating Section 100 - Roadway Design, and is expecting to have revisions completed and published by May 2018.
Additional information regarding standards revisions that have been made to date can be found on the City’s webpage under the “Recent Revisions to City Standards” section.
Video Arraignment Upgrade
The video arraignment system utilized by corrections and the court is scheduled to be upgraded in June. Equipment in one courtroom will be replaced with new cameras, microphones, displays and speakers. The arraignment room at the jail will also receive all new equipment. Video arraignment reduces or eliminates the need to transport prisoners outside of the jail for initial court hearings. The result is a cost savings and increased security of corrections and court staff. The new system is more robust than the current system and will be more reliable.
Mount Rainier is a Volcano (or, Why the Sirens Every Month?)
An active volcano, Mount Rainier last erupted well over 100 years ago. While we can’t say how many times Rainier has erupted over the course of its existence, we do expect it to erupt again someday – the only questions are a matter of when, and to what degree.
A Mount Rainier Eruption will place the Puyallup valley at risk of catastrophe from a lahar, which is a volcanic mudflow that can reach 100 feet in height and travel 45 to 50 miles per hour. According to the Unites States Geological Survey (USGS), “Lahars look and behave like flowing concrete, and they destroy or bury most manmade structures in their paths.”
Should Mount Rainier erupt, everyone in the valley will need to avoid the oncoming lahar by evacuating to higher ground. It’s for this reason that the lahar warning siren system is tested on the first Monday of each month, and it’s also why we provide a map showing recommended evacuation routes.
You can read more about Mount Rainier and lahars, courtesy of the USGS.
Puyallup Lions Club Eye Glasses Drop Box
The Puyallup Lions Club offers a program that provides seniors with eye glasses at low cost. An optometrist puts new lenses in donated glasses then is able to provide low income seniors with a new pair of glasses. Anyone wishing to give or discard their eye glasses, whether they are regular glasses or sun glasses, can do so at the Activity Center’s drop box.
Youth Basketball Silent Saturday
The second Silent Saturday of the youth basketball season was held on February 24th. Silent Saturday is a day for the kids to display what they have learned so far this season while spectators are asked to stay silent for the day. Clapping is encouraged. Coaches continue to coach and provide instruction to the players in a positive manner. Silent Saturday is not meant to punish the spectators but rather to allow the kids a chance to play without any positive or negative verbal feedback from the stands. The players will only have to listen to one voice and that is the voice of the coach.
Upgrades to the video recording equipment in the council chambers will begin on March 13th and will be available for recording the council meeting scheduled for March 20th. Granicus, the provider that records council meetings, are making available a new encoding equipment that records in high definition providing much better quality for playback. There will be no change in the way the public accesses the recordings, but they will notice much clearer images.
Puyallup seniors had an exciting day touring the Seattle Chocolate Factory in Tukwila. The tour resembled a real-life Charlie and the Chocolate Factory excursion. The group was greeted with a “Chocolate Shot” (melted chocolate) as they walked through the door. In the Chocolate Room, they learned all about the chocolate tree, chocolate bean, and how these particular items end up in the Factory. The group then walked above the factory floor and watched the whole process of chocolate making from molding the chocolate to wrapping the chocolate. Following the tour, everyone ended in the best place… the tasting room, where each participant had an opportunity to try 10 different chocolates. After they were done enjoying the tasting room, the seniors choose one truffle to add to the Truffle Wall – their take on the famous Seattle gum wall. Upon the conclusion of the tour, participants were encouraged to prepare a gift box with what they tasted in the factory that day. After departing the Seattle Chocolate Factory, trip-goers ventured over to Jimmy Mac’s to enjoy a nice lunch before heading back to the Senior Center.
Shaw Road Partial Long-Term Closure
Starting in April, Shaw Road will be closed for construction from 23rd Avenue SE to Manorwood Drive for six to eight months.
This project will facilitate left turns by those travelling north or south. This section of Shaw Road experiences more than 16,000 vehicle trips per day, and the addition of a center left-turn lane will ease traffic congestion and improve travel times, particularly during the morning and evening commute hours. The project will also add a sidewalk on the west side and a mixed-use trail on the east.
The road will be closed for construction as keeping it open would extend the project’s timeframe and add more than $800,000 to its $9.4 million cost.
The City looks forward to accomplishing this project and securing its benefits for all who use Shaw Road. Getting from “Before” to “After” will take some time, so thank you in advance for your patience.
Officer Habeck Visits Faith Lutheran School
Officer Habeck visited the 2nd and 3rd grade classroom at Faith Lutheran School in February after seeing the class standing on the side of Pacific Avenue in Parkland during the procession for Deputy Daniel McCartney’s memorial service in January.
Officer Habeck who participated in the procession for Deputy McCartney was very moved that the children were there and were waving American flags while yelling, “Thank you for your service” as the many police vehicles passed them in the rain.
To show his gratitude, Officer Habeck purchased 30 small silicone bracelets with police blue line colors and US flag pattern. He presented the bracelets to the teacher and the children at school thanking them for showing their respect and support. He also talked about safety, the cool stuff on his police belt, and they took a quick look at his patrol car. All in all, a great visit and an opportunity to thank our future for their support of us.
Toddler Campus Preschool
The 2018-2019 school year is fast approaching and registration for the Puyallup Recreation Center’s preschool program opens soon! Two classes are available: Preschool for children 3-4 years old and Pre-Kindergarten for children 4-5 years old. Toddler Campus Preschool is located in the Puyallup Recreation Center and strives to prepare students for their school career. Social, academic, and behavioral skills are emphasized in a fun and safe environment. Class sizes are limited and encourages a strong classroom community. Registration packets will be available at the Recreation Center or online at www.cityofpuyallup.org. Spots can be reserved starting on March 19th. For more information, contact the Recreation Center at 253-841-5457 or email Tyler at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Development Services – Proposed New Development
Over the past several weeks, City Development Review staff have held pre-application meetings with the proponents of the following possible new development projects:
- Re-plat existing lots in the 1700 block of 21st Street SE, which would result in construction of a new single-family residence.
- Four-lot single-family residential short plat (subdivision) in the 3400 block of 20th Street SW.
- Remodel to the existing Puyallup Volkswagen dealership building, located at 820 River Road. This remodel would accommodate the creation of additional office space for the dealership.
- Treat and remediate contaminated soil near the 100 block of 3rd Street SE, in downtown. Soil treatment has been occurring for many years on and around the Cornforth-Campbell property, given past contamination from the former “dry cleaner site” located on the east side of 3rd Street SE adjacent to the Meeker Mansion. The proposal involves a more aggressive treatment project, including actual excavation of contaminated soil, in and around that street segment.
Pierce County Law Enforcement Polar Plunge for WA State Special Olympics
On February 10th, Deputy Chief Dave McDonald, Records Supervisor Nichole McNiven, Interim Administrative Assistant to the Chief of Police Kari Lucey, and Reserve Officer Shaun Nestor (AKA Team Dog Paddlers) took a plunge in the chilly waters of the Puget Sound at Owen Beach! The four were raising money for WA State Special Olympics. Team Dog Paddlers raised $1,551 in just a few short days by our agency supporters. Overall the Pierce County Law Enforcement Polar Plunge raised over $75,000.00 for Special Olympics. The Deputy Chief reported the water temp at time of plunge was colder than normal (41 degrees) and the wind was bone chilling!
Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra
On February 24th, the Puyallup Activity Center coordinated an excursion to the Tacoma Musical Playhouse to enjoy a tribute to “Ol’ Blue Eyes”, Frank Sinatra! This musical tribute to one of the greatest entertainers of the 20th century was instantly sold out. Our group of eager theater-goers enjoyed some of the Sultan of Swoon’s greatest hits including “My Way”, Fly Me to the Moon”, and “New York, New York”. This trip back in time made the group relive a piece of musical history, where they said, “the music was good!”
CJIS Security Audit
The Police and IT departments have passed a Technical Security Audit conducted by the Washington State Patrol as required by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. This audit is conducted every 3 years and examines all aspects of the City’s physical and virtual environment to ensure that Criminal Justice Information (CJI) is safeguarded against unauthorized use. The IT department has installed and instituted various state of the art improvements over the last year to harden access to all city systems. It is important to remember that technology can only do so much to protect data. Users must also be vigilant to counter attempts to exploit access by criminal actors. The IT department receives several reports per month of suspicious behavior such as strange popups, unexpected email and even phishing phone calls where the caller attempts to extract information.
In February, the Puyallup Police Department partnered with Waste Connections for a new crime prevention program called Collection Detection. Collection Detection is a program where PPD trained 25 garbage and recycle truck drivers who operate on routes in the City of Puyallup on how to spot criminal activity in neighborhoods. Drivers can report suspicious activity to 911. This program allows PPD to have extra sets of eyes and ears in neighborhoods who can watch out for suspicious activity. Many of the drivers know their routes well and are a great resource for PPD to partner with!
Pioneer Park Pavilion
February at the Pioneer Park Pavilion highlights just how versatile this beautiful facility is. The Pavilion hosted Puyallup Recreation’s Daddy Daughter Dance, the Miss Pierce County Scholarship Program Gala & Auction, the Puyallup Activity Center’s Valentine Luncheon, a Celebration of Life, the Daffodil Princess Promenade, a Puyallup School District counselor training, South Hill Rotary’s Gold & Silver Fundraiser, Tacoma Radiology’s 100th Anniversary Party, the NW Sinfonietta, and a lovely wedding reception.
Meet Chief Justus
This year the Puyallup Police Department will once again participate in the Chief for a Day program through the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission. This month we selected our new Chief. Meet Chief Justus!
Justus was born premature at 30 weeks and sustained a brain bleed during birth. Subsequently, he developed Hydrocephalus, a condition where your spinal fluid is trapped in the brain causing increased continual pressure, and had to have his first brain surgery at just two weeks old and barely weighing over 3 pounds. The surgery placed a temporary catheter at the center of his brain to release the spinal fluid and connect it to a shunt valve that was placed just under the scalp to drain the fluid down to his abdomen. The permanent shunt was placed three weeks later.
Unfortunately, 50% of shunts fail within the first two years. Justus' first shunt lasted just a few weeks and he was back in the OR for brain surgery number three. During surgery doctors noticed that the shunt was not working and discovered that Justus had a serious infection in his spinal fluid from the previous surgery. Justus' health began to deteriorate rapidly as they began the aggressive treatment to fight the infection. Between compromised kidney function, vision loss, loss of motor function on the left side of his body and struggling to breath, Justus was barely hanging on. The road was difficult and long. Over the next couple years shunt after shunt failed. Fifteen times in all.
With countless hospital visits, doctors’ appointments, PT and OT sessions, Justus was a trooper through it all, never once complaining, just faithfully flashing his handsome smile at his nurses and therapists. Then when Justus was 3 years old he had his first seizure. It lasted 45 minutes and it was the beginning of a new battle with epilepsy, which is still uncontrolled today. Justus is now 9 years old and thriving more than ever could have been imagined. Though it is unknown if his current shunt will stop working, he is living life to the fullest! Even when seizures take over plans and he often misses out on many things, Justus remains thankful. He enjoys school, playing piano, telling jokes, and being a big brother.
PPD is very excited to welcome Chief Justus as our newest Chief for a Day!
Snow & Ice Treatment Routes
The first substantial snow for 2018 blanketed Puyallup February 21st & 22nd. The streets division of public works responded the night of February 21st at 9:00PM. Initially, the response was preventative in nature, with two street employees applying liquid deicer to keep snow from accumulating and bonding to the pavement. This quickly turned into a much larger event with two additional street personnel being called in to begin removal utilizing snow plows. Over two inches of snow fell through the evening and early morning, but the street crew was able to have all primary routes open for the early morning commute on February 22nd. This was accomplished with the use two deicer trucks, three snow plows, and one grader. Approximately, 36 tons of road salt was used, plus 5000 gallons of liquid deicer on 74 lane miles of roadway. This required ten consecutive hours throughout the evening wherein the crew kept to a pre-planned snow route. The daytime shift then relieved the night crew and performed additional snow removal activities and applied deicer to all routes, as a hard freeze was predicted the following evening.