February 2017

Reserve Officer Academy Graduate

Deputy Chief McDonald represented the Puyallup Police Department at the Reserve Officer Academy graduation hosted by the Fife Police Department on February 7th.  PPD sponsored Central Pierce Fire & Rescue firefighter Chris Lorenz to attend the academy for the purpose of earning his limited commission to investigate arsons and other related crimes as a Deputy Fire Marshal for Central Pierce.
DFM Lorenz made us proud, earning several reserve academy awards. He was the class president, gave the commencement speech on behalf of his graduating class, ranked #1 academically, ranked #1 in Firearms (former SWAT Medic) and was voted by his classmates to receive the “Partner Award”.

Congratulations DFM Lorenz and welcome to the PPD Team!
DC McDonald and DFM Lorenz

Environmental Review Streamlining

Per state law, the City performs environmental review (aka “SEPA”) on a variety of land use development proposals.  The SEPA process is intended to identify future impacts and propose appropriate mitigation conditions for each project. There are state-required public comment periods for a SEPA review - even on fairly minor projects with no noteworthy impacts - which can lead to longer permit timelines. To help encourage more responsive permit turnaround times, the State has enacted laws which allow local cities to combine the SEPA comment period for a particular development proposal with the separate “Notice of Application” (an upfront public notice requirement) comment period.

In late 2016, the City Council adopted local code allowing Puyallup to use this combined comment period process, which is now being implemented. This streamlined process does not preclude the City from still using a separate SEPA comment period, if warranted, for a proposed development with considerable impacts and/or public interest.  This new process also does not alter any of our public hearing requirements for qualifying proposals.   

St. Valentine’s Day Party

The Activity Center hosted its annual St. Valentine’s Day party on February 10th.  The event was held at the Pioneer Park Pavilion with approximately 250 seniors festively dressed in red and white attire. Entertainment was provided by the ever-popular performance group “The Fun Singers” and the Activity Center’s very own Belly Dance class -The “Sa’Diyah Dancers. The Party included a catered lunch, and a large assortment of beautiful desserts. In addition, over 500 pounds of food was collected at the party for the Puyallup Food Bank…a record amount collected during this this event!

Development Services

Over the past month, City Development Review staff have held pre-application meetings with the proponents of the following possible new development projects: 

  • A potential remodel of an existing downtown tenant space at 121 West Meeker for a new church use. 
  • A possible new phase for the “Stewart Crossing” Planned Development, located on West Stewart. Known as “Phase 8”, this project would be a new 51-unit (10 acre) expansion of the Stewart Crossing single-family residential subdivision, located immediately north of other phases in that project. This “Phase 8” area was not part of the Hearing Examiner’s original multi-phase Stewart Crossing plat approval in 2013.      
  • A proposed new 1250 square foot building in the 400 block of 2nd Street NE (i.e. adjacent to McDonalds) for a Jimmy John’s sandwich shop.
Mystery Madness Trip
The Puyallup Activity Center offers Mystery Trips on a monthly basis. Mystery Trips are designed for the ‘adventurous traveler’ and are titled as such due to the destination and activity not being revealed…every aspect of the trip is truly a mystery!
The Center’s recent mystery trip, titled ‘Mystery Madness’ took place on February 15th and the day started with a journey to the River Valley Cheese Company. Upon arrival, our trip goers were personally greeted by the owner (Kristi) and she had an incredible private fondue party planned for them, including the best fondue available! During their visit, our participants really enjoyed indulging in Kristi’s fabulous fondue buffet, and they even learned Kristi’s secret personal recipe! After their fun morning of eating great fondue and learning about cheese, our seniors were treated to a delicious slice of cheesecake to take home with them.
Group shot.River Valley Cheese trip

Street of the Week Returns

In an effort to address traffic concerns, the Street of the Week (SOTW) has returned. The program will run from Tuesday to Tuesday each week. The Traffic Unit and officers will focus enforcement efforts on the Street of the Week during their work week. The SOTW is determined by radar trailer data, Traffic Unit recommendation and citizen complaints. The SOTW will be advertised via social media prior to, and during, the emphasis. 

Emergency Management Division News

Puyallup’s Emergency Management Division works to defend and enhance public safety by preparing for, responding to and recovering from emergency and disaster situations. To this end, the Division conducts training sessions throughout the year and coordinates needed plans and procedures with Pierce County, the Puyallup School District and other affected agencies. Recent work of the Division has included:

  • Securing a 2016 Emergency Management Program Grant which will be used to offset our contract for services with the Pierce County Department of Emergency Management;
  • Revising the City’s Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan for submission to the Washington State Emergency Management Division; and
  • Convening a team to update the City’s Hazard Mitigation Plan, expected to be a year-long effort.
Additionally, Emergency Management Director Pat Donovan has been invited to participate in a site visit to Nevado Del Ruiz, an active volcano in Colombia which shares some similarities with Mount Rainier. Nevado Del Ruiz erupted in 1985, with the subsequent lahar killing over 25,000 people. The tour has been made available through a grant from the United States Geological Survey.

Family Bingo Night

Gather your family and friends for a fun filled night playing Bingo! Prizes will be awarded to the winner of each game. Concessions will be sold on-site. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. and space is limited to the first 100 people. This event will be a fun time for all ages. 

When:  Friday, March 31st from 5:30 -7:30 p.m.
Where: Puyallup Activity Center
  Fee:     $0.50 each game board or 5 for $2

Pioneer Park Pavilion

February at the Pavilion was a particularly busy month! In a 28-day month, we hosted 17 very diverse rentals. Events included: A Champions Center team meeting, Puyallup Recreation’s Daddy Daughter Dance, Chik-fil-A’s kickoff team meeting, a Multicare Service Awards banquet, the Activity Center’s Valentine’s Luncheon, Keurig/Green Mountain Coffee employee event, the NW Sinfonietta, an AARP Medicare/Health event, a Quincenera, Pierce Conservation’s Farm Forum, South Hill Rotary’s Gold & Silver Fundraiser, Puyallup/Sumner Chamber Bash, a Community Fundraising Event, the Daffodil Princess Promenade, the Wesley Homes Groundbreaking Event, and two lovely weddings. As you can see from the wide variety of events, the Pavilion is truly an asset to the community.

The Pavilion’s audio/visual system upgrade is coming soon! The new system is scheduled to be installed the last week of March.

Citizen’s Academy

The Puyallup Police Department began their annual Citizen’s Academy on March 1st. Classes are held every Wednesday evening for 11 weeks in addition to two Saturday classes. Citizens will learn about their police department, go on a ride along with an officer, receive scenario based training and drive the Gem car (electric vehicle) through an obstacle course while wearing goggles that simulate impairment by alcohol. There are 24 citizens signed up for the popular course.

Silver Creek Trail Expansion

For the first time the City is partnering with the state-wide non-profit Washington Trails Association (WTA) to build a new, 1/8-mile trail segment on Silver Creek. The trail segment to be built by WTA volunteers is a missing segment needed to complete the Clarks Creek Loop Trail – a City Council funded work program item for 2017. 
Silver Creek Trail Extension
One of the primary missions of WTA is the volunteer lead trail maintenance and construction work parties. Annually, WTA leads approximately 3,700 volunteers and logs approximately 125,000 volunteer hours across the state maintaining trails. For this project, two work parties were held, one on February 24th and the second on February 25th, from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

WTA was able to partner with the City on this project through grant funds they previously received to staff the event; the work parties are led by WTA staff at no cost to the City. The volunteer labor for the Silver Creek trail extension with full participation for the two combined work parties is valued at about $4,000.00. 
Clarks Creek Trail Conceptual Map

Great Decisions Discussion Group 2017

The Puyallup Activity Center has partnered again this year with Learning is Forever and the Puyallup Public Library to offer Great Decisions Discussion Group 2017. Great Decisions is America’s largest discussion program on world affairs and is sponsored by the Foreign Policy Association. The program model involves reading the Great Decisions briefing book, meeting to watch the DVD then discussing critical global issues facing America today. Topics presented include EU, trade, China, Gulf Cooperation Council/Saudi Arabia, Geopolitics of Energy, Latin American, Afghanistan/Pakistan, and nuclear security.

Permit Activity

Development Services is currently engaged in a variety of permit and inspection activities for development projects around the City. Some current noteworthy projects include: 

  • A major building permit application was submitted to the City in February by MultiCare for the occupancy of the upper two floors of the Good Samaritan Hospital Patient Care Tower. Under these requested permits, the two floors are proposed to become new acute care hospital bed space; other related facility changes around the Good Samaritan campus are also anticipated in 2017-18.     
  • The City recently received building permit submittals for a new retail tenant at the South Hill Mall: H & M, a popular clothing store. Upon completion later this year, H & M will occupy 19,300 square feet of floor area within the Mall. Some other existing retailers are being relocated within the Mall in order to create this large new space for H & M. 
  • Wesley Homes, the 17-acre multi-building senior housing complex adjacent to Lowe’s on 37th Avenue SE, is slated to receive its grading permits in March, with site work expected to commence soon thereafter. The City is still processing associated building and engineering permits for the actual facility improvements. Construction on this new facility will continue into 2018.      
  • A new professional office building, located on the site of the former Forbidden City restaurant at 1402 East Main, is completing construction and beginning occupancy. This 24,000 square foot structure, which includes both the remodeled restaurant space and a major addition, will house State agency offices.   

Hoop Shoot & Hot Spot 

The Puyallup Recreation Department’s Youth Basketball Leagues had a day off on February 18th and to scratch the basketball itch, 42 kids participated in the Hoop Shoot and Hot Spot Competition. Kids ages 7-14 years old competed in free throw and basketball shooting competitions. Highlights included 11-year-old Chloe Barnes hitting 55 points in the Hot Spot and 14-year-old Brandon Christianson scoring 84 points. The Hoop Shoot had 9-year-old Joshua Steiger hitting impressive back to back rounds of 8 out of 10 free throws. Overall, the event was a huge success with kids cheering each other on and working toward their own high score.  
Hoop Shoot - Hot Spot 2017