Friday, August 7, 2020

Monofilament Fishing Line Recycling Container For Idylwood Park

Fish Habitat Design Plans
Internet photo
During "Council Talk Time," at the end of the 8/4/2020 Regular Business meeting, Councilmember David Carson said it's common birds, fish and turtles can get caught in monofilament fishing line and die.  He noted Idylwood Park has a monofilament recycling container.  I couldn't find it even when looking in the fishing areas of Idylwood Creek shoal.  I've seen Asian fishermen there frequently.  The WSDFW doesn't have any requirements for recycling containers. I'll report this to the City at Info@Redmond.gov.

-- Bob Yoder

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Tour de Redmond 2020 - Bike Back To Redmond And Support Local Businesses

 Ride your bike back to Redmond and support local Redmond businesses with this year’s Tour de Redmond’s community bicycle challenge and weekly scavenger hunt! This year’s Tour de Redmond will be held from September 1-30. Registration is open!

Organized by the Greater Redmond Transportation Management Association,  Redmond's advocate for better streets, trails, and transit, the bike challenge is open to employees, commuters, and residents of all ages and abilities!

The Tour de Redmond is all about encouraging new people to try getting around on two wheels. Create a team of up to 10 of your friends, family, or colleagues. For each day one of your team members rides, you’ll get a point. Participants of the teams with the most points at the end of September will be entered for rewards at local Redmond businesses.

Prefer a different pace? Join our weekly photo scavenger hunt challenge on four scenic trails across Redmond featuring local businesses and Redmond's new trails and light rail.
Learn more and register here - https://grtma.org/tour-de-redmond-2020/

Parklets Are A Resounding Success

Redmond Bar and Grill (RBG) was the first restaurant permitted with a "streatery" (or parklet.)  Their  monthly sales increased 30-40%.  Nine other restaurants have applied for a parklet.  They are getting grants to pay for the permits. My guess is the grants are coming from One Redmond.  The WoodBlock restaurant now has extended their seating along the restaurant sidewalk.

The owner of the RBG is taking upon himself to help those applying for a permit.

-- Source: Regular Council Business meeting, 8/5/2020

Preparation Begins On Downtown Light Rail Extension


Beginning this week, you’ll see crews working along eastbound SR 520 between NE 40th Street and West Lake Sammamish Parkway. This work will create a haul road in anticipation of clearing and grading the construction zone in the fall to extend light rail to Downtown Redmond. http://ow.ly/YKXD50AQZeM  - Facebook, 8/5/2020

Image may contain: outdoor, text that says 'OWN DOWNTOWN DMOND'

Monday, August 3, 2020

LWSD Should Cut Expenditures During Remote Learning

It's only logical, the cost of teaching will (and should) be lower during remote learning and adjustments should be made.  A quick fix is to furlough non-essential workers like instructional assistants, librarians, medical assistants and secretaries. The money saved could be applied to food, the disabled, mental health care, computers...

In addition, nine Associate Directors were recently promoted to Directors. (annual pay $167,060.)  Three Directors were promoted to "Executive Directors" (annual pay $188,835.)  Do away with the promotions until remote learning ends.

IT administrators are invaluable in remote learning.  A new Assistant Superintendent ($196, 703) and her three Directors with their support team should carry the load.  

It would be interesting to learn who in the Administration works with the teaching software. The programs could be expensive.

-- Bob Yoder, opinion

Virtual Seafair Event

Can you see the two Hydros?
During my morning walk down 104th, four truck-mounted Hydros passed by.  As I passed Redmond High I saw about eight hydros parked in the lot.  I went home to get my camera and by the time I got back they had already departed.  So my wife and I caught up in our car and followed them  -- downtown to Willows and through the Kirkland waterview neighborhoods. We actually joined in on the parade, with emergency lights blinking and waves to the families. The kids really got into it.  Everyone had fun.

This virtual Seafair event couldn't have been better. 

-- Bob Yoder
   Photo by Pam Yoder

EvergreenHealth Named Best In The Region

EvergreenHealth Named Among Best In Region For Third Consecutive Year

Kirkland, Wash. – For the third year in a row, EvergreenHealth has been named among the best hospitals in the Puget Sound area and the state of Washington by U.S. News & World Report, ranking No. 3 in the Seattle Metropolitan area and No. 4 in Washington state. The 31st annual report compares nearly 5,000 medical centers nationwide in 16 medical specialties and 10 procedures and conditions.

So Bazaar Festival Going Virtual This Year

Redmond, WA – The So Bazaar evening festival is going virtual this year. Join us via Facebook Live Thursday, August 20, starting at 7:00 p.m., at www.Facebook.com/RedmondParks. The virtual event will consist of an art compilation with a program that will highlight culinary arts, dance, film, music, poetry, visual arts, and more. 
This year’s So Bazaar theme is “Hindsight is 2020,” which offers an opportunity to reflect on the past, live in the present, and envision the future.
“So Bazaar showcases Redmond as a vibrant and creative destination,” said Mayor Angela Birney. “Although this year may look a little different, it is more important than ever to recognize what makes our community so unique. Join us virtually as we celebrate the diversity, creativity, and excitement that makes the City of Redmond such a welcoming and wonderful community.”
So Bazaar is a multi-disciplinary arts celebration and an opportunity for local artists, chefs, and entertainers to share their talents. 
This festival encourages Redmond residents, employees, and visitors to socially engage and experience the arts. This year’s event will feature artists from So Bazaar’s past, offering timely inspiration for the future. 
Explore the depths of creativity and imagination through performances and participatory arts offerings. This year’s artists include Tomo Nakayama, Chrysalis Circus, Britta Johnson, afrose fatima ahmed, Chef Christine Arokiasamy, Rhythms of India, Redmond’s Poet Laureate Raul Sanchez, Redmond’s Artist-in-Residence Xaviera Vandermay, and more.
For more information and a complete listing of So Bazaar programming, please visit https://www.redmond.gov/SoBazaar. The event will be available for on demand viewing at www.Facebook.com/RedmondParks after the event on August 20.
-- Press Release

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Downtown Park Is A Good Place To Be During These Times

To our surprise this Friday at 7:30 PM, walking around town, we found the Downtown Park very vibrant: with small families, couples eating on small tables, singles reading books, a young women exercising to her computer; few dogs. The additional chairs and tables were a good idea, adding lots of color and social space. The activity may or may not have something to do with "the COVID affect." Certainly, the weather was outstanding.

Living on Education Hill it's rare for us to see or visit the park.

One of the things I've been harping on is our need for a Visitor Center. Someone reading my blog thought the Downtown Park cement space would be a good location. Another friend said 4-5,000 are  moving into Redmond every year.  There appears a need.

What do you think?

-- Bob Yoder


Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Recap Of Today's COVID-19 News And Updates - 7/29/2020

Contact: Joint Information Center
253-512-7100
wajic@mil.wa.gov

Recap of Today’s COVID-19 News and Updates

Statewide Response Updates
Newest numbers. The state of Washington reported 793 new COVID-19 cases over the past 24 hours. This brings the total number of cases to 54,985 as of July 28 at 11:59 p.m. The total number of deaths are at 1,555.
For the most recent tally of cases by county, demographics, and more, visit the Department of Health's dashboard and the state’s COVID-19 risk assessment dashboard.
Inslee extends high-risk employee proclamation. Gov. Jay Inslee today extended his proclamation regarding workers’ rights and protections and protections for employees at higher risk of severe illness. As a result of new CDC guidance regarding people at increased risk for severe illness, the extension will provide a clarifying guidance memo. The guidance memo confirms that employees who are 65 and older continue to be covered by the proclamation and clarifies processes for employers of individuals with certain medical conditions. The proclamation will remain in effect through the duration of the state of emergency, or until otherwise rescinded or amended.

Mayor Birney Advises Wearing Facemasks In Elevators, Condominium Hallways And Other Spaces

"Hello I’m Redmond Mayor Angela Birney. Our region, including the City of Redmond, are once again seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases.

I know this is a very difficult time for our community and especially for our small businesses. Many of us are missing our loved ones and find ourselves in extremely uncertain times. I believe we can and will overcome COVID19, but this is going to take all of us working together to stop the spread of this virus.

City Hall Will Remain Closed Through 2020

Due to the ongoing uncertainty and Governor Inslee’s indefinite pause of the state’s phased approach to reopening, the recent increase in COVID-19 cases, and the need to continue to keep our staff and community safe, City facilities will remain closed through the end of 2020. Redmond Police, Fire and other critical City services will remain fully operational. City staff are teleworking while facilities are closed.


City release posted by Bob Yoder

Northeast Recycling Transfer Station Project

70% of King County garbage is recyclable. Of 120 truckloads, 90 could be filled with recyclables. Food, waste and organics account for most of the recyclables.  -- Pat McLaughlin, Solid Waste Division Manager.

King County manages solid waste for 37 cities located within the County as well as all the unincorporated areas of the County. King County’s 2019 Comprehensive Solid Waste Management Plan (Plan) sets strategies for managing solid waste in King County on a 20- year planning horizon and is updated every six years. The Plan sets policies for operation of the solid waste system including long-range disposal options and identifies required upgrades to the County system including transfer stations. The Plan was most recently updated and approved by the cities (including Redmond) in 2019. King County’s transfer station system includes six urban transfer stations geographically located throughout the County along with four rural transfer stations. Of the six urban transfer stations, the Houghton station (the station used by Redmond) is the last station that is planned to be replaced or upgraded with a modern design to include compaction and recycling facilities by 2027.  The Plan recommends providing a new, modern recycling and transfer facility in the Northeast part of the county, to serve Kirkland, Redmond, Sammamish, Woodinville and unincorporated areas and to replace the aging Houghton Transfer Station that was built in the mid 1960’s. Recyclables can be replaced back into the economy. This King County Project is being managed by the King County Solid Waste Division.

Regular Business Meeting memo, 7/28/2020

Cost Recovery From COVID-19 Expenses

On June 2, 2020 Council decided to allocate $1,975,800 of funding provided by the CARES Act to the community via Small Business Economic Support ($1,705,800), Senior Nutrition Program ($20,000), and Human Services for mental health, telework, food security, and personal protective equipment ($250,000). 

BACKGROUND:  On January 21, 2020 the State of Washington announced that the first confirmed positive case of COVID-19 had been identified at the Life Center in Kirkland, Washington. The first announcement of a death from the disease in the United States occurred on February 29th . The City of Redmond Emergency Coordination Center (ECC) activated on February 29th and Mayor Birney declared a state of emergency on March 2, 2020. City facilities (except for essential/life safety operations) were closed on March 13th. During this time additional supplies were obtained to create a safe workspace for staff and first responders to effectively respond to the pandemic. On March 16, 2020 Washington State Governor Jay Inslee ordered all restaurants, bars, and recreational facilities closed to the public.

On January 21, 2020 the State of Washington announced that the first confirmed positive case of COVID-19 had been identified at the Life Center in Kirkland, Washington. The first announcement of a death from the disease in the United States occurred on February 29th . The City of Redmond Emergency Coordination Center (ECC) activated on February 29th and Mayor Birney declared a state of emergency on March 2, 2020. City facilities (except for essential/life safety operations) were closed on March 13th. During this time additional supplies were obtained to create a safe workspace for staff and first responders to effectively respond to the pandemic. On March 16, 2020 Washington State Governor Jay Inslee ordered all restaurants, bars, and recreational facilities closed to the public.

The City of Redmond submitted a Request for Public Assistance to FEMA on April 13, 2020 and was approved as a subrecipient of the Washington State Military Department. FEMA funding will reimburse eligible expenditures related to the primary incident response including but not limited to personal protective equipment, sanitation, and medical supplies. The total FEMA grant award amount has not yet been identified and will be determined based on approved project worksheets which are to be submitted by the City. On June 2, 2020 Council decided to allocate $1,975,800 of funding provided by the CARES Act to the community via Small Business Economic Support ($1,705,800), Senior Nutrition Program ($20,000), and Human Services for mental health, telework, food security, and personal protective equipment ($250,000). The identified costs will be 100% reimbursable by the City’s CARES Act Funding administered by the Washington State Department of Commerce. On May 12, 2020 King County Council passed an ordinance allocating $1.95 million of the County’s CARES Act allocation to a grant program to support King County cities’ economic relief and recovery activities in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. Of this, the City of Redmond is eligible to receive $100,584.

Mayor memo to Council, 7/21/2020

$4,250,645 Bid Awarded For Tank Painting And Seismic Upgrade

On most large Redmond projects I have noticed, grants are awarded.  The City is exceptional in this matter. I don't understand why grants weren't secured for this massive project. - B. Yoder

The City owns and operates a four and half million-gallon (4.5 MG) water storage tank in SE Redmond. The tank is located at 18609 NE 65th St., near Fire Station 16. The steel tank was constructed in 1996 and is scheduled for exterior and interior paint recoating.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Redmond Is Paused To Phase 2 Indefinitely


Public Information OfficerWashington Emergency Management Division AGENCY  7/28/2020
Today, Gov. Inslee extended the pause indefinitely on counties moving ahead in the Safe Start Washington plan. We must prevent runaway spread of #COVID19 in our state. Our individual actions make a difference. Fewer, shorter and safer interactions are crucial.
More information on what's open in each phase: https://coronavirus.wa.gov/what-you-need...
A reminder of what counties are in each phase: https://coronavirus.wa.gov/what-you-need...
#MaskUpWA

King County - Redmond is paused to Phase 2 indefinitely by Governor Inslee.

7/28/2020

June Financial Report And Quarterly Overtime Update

Each month the City of Redmond Finance Department reviews the prior month’s financial performance. The June Financial Report continues to show the impacts of the pandemic mainly in ongoing revenue.

However, one-time revenue from construction projects continues to remain steady. General Fund Revenues -- Sales tax collections for June equaled $57.4 million over the biennium with approximately $12 million due to one-time sales tax on construction collections. 

Monday, July 27, 2020

Downtown Redmond Marymoor Link Extension Light Rail To Begin Construction

Starting soon: Sound Transit's light rail project near Marymoor Park

Parks ST Light Rail Marymoor

As soon as the week of August 3rd, Sound Transit will begin construction on the segment of the Downtown Redmond Link Extension Light Rail that goes along SR 520 at the northern boundary of Marymoor Park.
This construction activity will not directly affect the park nor require closure of any Marymoor facilities.
Sound Transit will install fencing around the construction zone along the north boundary of the park and expects to start removing trees within the construction zone as soon as September 1.
Sound Transit expects light rail construction near Marymoor Park to continue through summer 2023.
For more information
Ryan Bianchi, Community Outreach Specialist

Comment:  This is an environmentally sensitive project with a section of the rail running about 5 feet over Bear Creek. Scores of trees will be removed (most of them small.) Off site mitigation will be employed with higher ratios of tree replacements than normal. Also, there is a wetland downstream that will be dredged into a back-channel. This will be good for the salmon. Myself, a City engineer, a City planner and Redmond resident Susan Wilkins made the site visitation. -- Bob Yoder

Redmond Bar And Grill Opens Redmond's First Eatery

Mayor Birney in white - social distancing
Mayor Birney joined the GRTMA, (Greater Redmond Transportation Management Association) OneRedmond and the community to celebrate Redmond’s first outdoor streatery at Redmond’s Bar and Grill last Friday. Redmond businesses that apply for a free temporary use permit can utilize public space to maximize customer seating capacity during Washington’s Safe Start Plan.

Two parking spaces were marked off to create 4 table spaces. Two other businesses are in the permitting process.

Several councilmembers were in attendance:  Tanika Padye, Steve Fields, David Carson, Vanessa Kritzer and Jessica Forsythe.  

Photo and report:  Bob Yoder

Friday, July 24, 2020

UPDATED: Redmond Needs A Visitor Center

UPDATED:  My wife and I attended the "Redmond Bar and Grill" streatery ribbon cutting tonight and felt so good just being outside and enjoying our neighbors.  The outdoor seating really made it all happen and the food and drink was delicious.

We felt more streateries like this one would make Redmond a special place.  As is, downtown Redmond just seems almost sterile.  People are starting to use the park but not like we had hoped. We decided what was needed is a Visitor Center. The only Visitors' Center we have is at Microsoft.  Even "Experience Redmond" labeled our center as Microsoft's.  As you can see from this link we are much more than Microsoft. https://www.redmond.gov/943/Largest-Employers.

We discussed good places for a Visitor Center.  The 3200 s.f. business for rent at Leary Way and Redmond Way, underneath Dr. Han's dental practice, seemed a good location. A center on the City Hall campus seemed okay. 

Redmond is more than a Microsoft; we need to spread our wings and welcome all of  our newcomers.

-- Bob Yoder, opinion

This piece was posted on Facebook with lots of viewer interest and feedback.  One lady thought a good place for the Tourist Center was near the downtown park.  Another mentioned a kiosk at the ERRATIC.  Most people were positive about the park.

City Of Redmond Aware Of Attackwa.org Breach

CONTACT
Public Information Officer
police@redmond.gov
425-556-2581
Redmond, WA – The City of Redmond is aware of a security/data incident related to “attackwa.org” which was operated by Netsential.com. This database was a part of a nation-wide data hack into Netsential systems known as the “Blue Leaks” hack, which affected over 200 law enforcement agencies across the country. Netsential reported this hack on June 22, 2020. On June 26, 2020, the City of Redmond discovered that its attackwa.org database was among the databases affected by this hack. The Blue Leaks data breach is currently under investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).