39th Avenue SE Ribbon Cutting Event
The Puyallup Main Street Association hosted a ribbon cutting event, opening the 39th Ave SE project to traffic on November 20th. Representative Hans Zeiger, Mayor Rick Hansen, Deputy Mayor John Knutsen, Councilmembers Kent Boyle and Steve Vermillion, and Chamber of Commerce President Shelly Schlumpf were all on hand for the ceremony.
HUD Program Offers Teachers and Public Safety Personnel Affordable Homes
The US Dept. of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) has a national program entitled “Good Neighbor Next Door” (GNND) designed to encourage new home ownership in HUD-financed homes, which have fallen into foreclosure. This federal program allows local teachers and public safety workers to purchase foreclosed homes in designated census tracts at substantially lower-than-market prices. In return, the buyer must agree to reside in the residence for at least three years. The intent of the program is to facilitate new ownership/occupancy in foreclosed homes by individuals who are vested in their communities. One census tract within the city limits (located in areas west and northwest of the Puyallup High School vicinity, see map) has qualified for the GNND program; additional areas of Puyallup may be included in this program at a later date. Qualifying police officers, firefighters, EMTs, and teachers may access the HUD website to learn more about the program and monitor eligible homes in this tract. City Planner Lindsey Sehmel (841-5462) is the city contact with HUD on this program.
First Responder Appreciation
In recognition of the work of First Responders in our community, the Prudential Contact Corporation in Puyallup will honor the officers of the Puyallup Police Department by providing breakfast and a dinner for the squads on Friday, November 30th. The Prudential Contact Corporation has been doing this for the past 5 years, and it is greatly appreciated.
“Not In Puyallup” Kick-Off
The Puyallup Police Department’s 8th annual “Not In Puyallup” Holiday emphasis patrol kicked off on November 23rd (or “Black Friday”). This year’s emphasis received considerable media attention with coverage on three local television stations. During the first day of the emphasis, two VIPS (Volunteers in Police Service) were actively patrolling the South Hill Mall parking lot when a call came out over the police radio of shoplifters running from Sears with merchandise. The VIPS were nearby and observed two subjects matching the description of the thieves dart into the Red Robin restaurant. They remained on scene and identified the suspects to the responding officers, who then made the arrests. This is an outstanding example of how our trained volunteers assist the police department in the community; it is likely these shoplifters would have escaped had it not been for our active volunteers.
The Holiday DUI emphasis patrols also kicked off on Saturday, November 24th. These patrols utilize DUI cost recovery money, which is an assessment on every DUI that goes into a specific fund to combat impaired driving. On the first emphasis, officers arrested seven impaired drivers. This is a busy start to the Holiday season that shows the Puyallup Police Department’s commitment to making our community safe for people to live, work, shop, and play.
Friends of Decoursey Pond
The Friends of Decoursey Pond group continues to meet and discuss the fecal coliform levels, water pollution issues, and the increased waterfowl population at Decoursey pond. Next spring, a new strategy will be introduced on a trial basis that uses trained dogs to disturb the ducks and make them less comfortable in the pond area. Other strategies in use include public awareness education and increased signage at the pond to discourage people from feeding the ducks.
Holiday Wreath Workshop
The annual wreath-making workshop was held on Thursday, November 29th, 6:00 pm at the Pioneer Park Pavilion. There were 28 registered participants for this fun holiday tradition. All supplies were included in the registration fee, with participants bringing branch cutters and their own creativity. The greenery provided to create a one-of-a-kind wreath, included fir, cedar, and holly branches.
Local Source Control ProgramCommunity response has remained positive toward the grant-funded Local Source Control (LSC) Program led by Kendall Wals. The program provides operation & maintenance recommendations for businesses to reduce the likelihood of stormwater system pollution and damage to waste systems. Recently, a local business was found to be improperly storing two, 55-gallon drums in their parking area. Improper container storage outdoors could allow rainwater to compromise the product inside, deteriorate the containers, or cause a spill creating a potential illicit discharge.
After working with the local business owner, proper storage measures have now been implemented. Both containers were replaced, labeled, and moved closer to the building, removing the risk of spills. The LSC program will continue to focus on restaurants in the South Hill area.
PPD Receives Puyallup Tribe Grant
Mayor Hansen and Chief Jeter recently attended the annual Puyallup Tribe of Indians 2% impact funds award luncheon. The Puyallup Police Department received $38,500 to implement an Automatic Vehicle Locator (AVL) program. This system will enhance customer service and officer safety by noting the vehicle’s location at all times while on shift, allowing for the closest unit to a call to be dispatched.
Officer Murrell Recognized for DUI enforcement
On November 16th, Officer Justin Murrell was recognized by the Tacoma/Pierce County Victims’ Information Panel for his DUI enforcement efforts during the year at their annual Candlelight Vigil and First Responder Recognition program. Officer Murrell leads the patrol division in DUI arrests for the second consecutive year.
Puyallup Seniors Visit the Gates Foundation Visitor Center
On November 27th, the Activity Center provided a trip to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center. Puyallup seniors enjoyed the excursion and learned about the work and efforts the foundation provides to help people around the world live healthy and productive lives. During their visit, the seniors experienced interactive exhibits and were told compelling stories of the work being done by their grantees and partners. To cap off the day, our group enjoyed a Caribbean-style lunch at Bahama Breeze before heading home.
Milwaukee Bridge Replacement Project Award
The City recently received a recommendation of award of $10,000,000 for the Milwaukee Bridge Replacement project. The City will be required to provide a 20% match for the project, which is expected to cost approximately $12,500,000 for design, right-of-way acquisition, and construction. The Milwaukee bridge was constructed in 1961; the current sufficiency rating of the bridge is 15.32 (out of 100), and it is structurally deficient (SD). The bridge is posted for restricted loads.
Officer Leppell Celebrates his 25th year
Officer Lloyd Leppell was recognized for completing his 25th year with the city at the City Council Meeting on November 27th. Officer Leppell is a former Police Explorer and has worked as a patrol officer, bicycle officer, fraud detective, and property crimes detective during his tenure. Officer Leppell has received many commendations over the years documenting his high level of customer service; he has also received two life saving awards. In 2006 he rescued a man from a burning building and in 2009 he successfully performed CPR on a heart attack patient.
Pioneer Park Pavilion
The VFW held their annual Veteran’s Day Event on November 12th at the Pioneer Park Pavilion, with approximately 500 citizens in attendance. The program was highlighted by Retired U.S. Air Force Colonel Joe Jackson, who was awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism in Vietnam. The event also included performances by local bands and chorus groups. Cadets from local Junior ROTC high schools also participated in the event. Other events at the Pavilion included: The Wedding Network Professionals, bringing in numerous wedding professionals to discuss current trends and issues in the wedding industry; a memorial service and reception; and two wedding receptions. The Puyallup Recreation Department also held their youth basketball coaches meeting at the Pavilion. The Pavilion is currently taking bookings for 2012 through early 2014.
Mark Your Calendars
· December 1 –Santa Parade & Tree Lighting Event – Downtown Puyallup, 5pm
· December 4 – City Council Meeting – City Council Chambers, 6:30 pm
· December 6 – Christmas Box Angel of Hope Candlelight Memorial, Woodbine Cemetery, 7:00 pm