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City’s Partnership With Developers Helps Restore Local Wetlands


he partnership of the City with two major developers is resulting in 11 acres of restored wetlands.

When Davis Properties constructed the Valley Distribution Center, they donated 11 aces of their property to the City for open space purposes. The donated 11 acres includes a portion of Salmon Creek along the East Valley Highway. When the City acquired the property, the land was pastureland with little habitat value. A small stream that drained from the hillside along the highway had been diverted to the base of the railroad tracks. The second commercial partner in this project was Fred Meyer, who needed a location for wetland mitigation associated with the new Sumner store. The City agreed to allow Fred Meyer to use a portion of the land for their wetland mitigation in exchange for improving the remainder of the City's property into one large wetland mitigation site. The improvements will include the relocation of the old stream to a new location that will provide quality habitat for fish. The stream area will include places for the stream to flood and naturally enhance the wetlands.

The first phase of the construction was completed last month when the initial grading of the site was done and the new stream corridor cut into the ground. Old tree trunks were imported to the site to provide shade and obstacles to make the stream better for fish. B-twelve Associates of Kent were the consultants and designers of the project. They worked very closely with State and federal agencies to obtain permits for the project and ensure the project improves habitat. A State Department of Ecology representative said, "this project is great! We wish everyone would do such a great project." In the fall, when the fish are no longer running and the ground is wetter, the property will be seeded and planted with native plants. The old stream will then be diverted to the new channel. Fred Meyer contractors will monitor the site and make the necessary changes over the next 10 years to ensure that the wetland is successful. For additional information about this project, contact Associate Planner Ron Buckholt at 891-3320.

New Flag at Daffodil Sport Complex The Daffodil Valley Sports Complex was built with the leadership of the Sumner Rotary Club and donations from thou sands of individuals and businesses. Each year the Rotary Club donates a new flag to the City in recognition of this community project.

SEE INSIDE New Look for Downtown Bridge Page 4

A Message from the Mayor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .pg. 2

City Halts Fluoride Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .pg. 3

Traffic Calming? Ask Dr. Sumner

A Look at the Sumner Fire Department

Message from Councilman Steve Allsop . . . . . . . . . . . . .pg. 7

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . pg. 4 . . . . . . . . . . . .pg. 6







he first weekend of August is always the Sumner Arts Festival in our town and this year it was wet on Friday evening. As I arrived at the food court, a big storm hit and cascades of water poured into tarps all over the Festival. Many of the artists gave up and closed up shop.

It reminded me of the 2nd or 3rd festival when it poured down on all the participants on that Saturday morning. Because people didn’t have the fancy canopies of today, the artists wares were in danger of being soaked or, worse yet, ruined. Then the merchants on Main Street opened up their doors and let the artists come into their stores.



1104 Maple St. Sumner, WA 98390 253-863-8300 253-863-2850 FAX

MAYOR Barbara Skinner Barbara Skinner

I believe that this is why the Sumner Festival has turned out to be such a long running success. Sumner took care of the artists and they passed the word around that this was a good place to come to display their work. The merchants of Sumner could have looked on the strangers in the streets as competition. Instead, they decided to treat them as visitors and as people who needed help. I always remember that year as my favorite festival because I was so proud of the folks in my home town. I hope you had the good luck to attend the festival on Saturday, with its beautiful weather and great bargains. The artists were afraid no one would come back on Saturday but there were wonderful crowds. The Sumner Arts Festival – that’s the place to be on the first weekend in August, rain or shine! See you there next year. Next, I’ll see you downtown at Sumner’s Classy Chassis Car Show on September 19th. (Pray for sun!) As always, if you have any questions or comments, please contact me at (253) 8913318. Barbara Skinner




Curt Brown


Mike Connor


Dave Enslow


Mark Evers


Leroy Goff


Matt Richardson


CITY STAFF Andrew Neiditz Steve Zamberlin

City Administrator Asst. City Administrator/ Human Resources

John Doan Asst. City Administrator/ Community Development & Parks Wendy Shook

Court Administrator

Patricia Bosmans

City Attorney

Susan Clary

City Clerk

Mary Ann Norquist

Finance/Systems Director

Steve Stringfellow

COUNCIL PROFILE This is the first of a series of profiles appearing in Community Connections introducing Sumner City Councilmembers to readers. Mark Evers has served on the Sumner City Council for more than six years. He is in his second term which expires Dec. 31, 2005. Mark and his wife April have lived in Sumner for 10 years. Their son Mark Evers Elijah is entering the first grade at Maple Lawn Elementary School in Sumner. Mark was born in Puyallup, attended public schools in Bothell and graduated from Washington State University with a degree in journalism. He owns a mortgage and escrow company and is a

Fire/Emergency Services Director

Colleen Wilson

Police Chief

free-lance writer.

Bill Shoemaker

Public Works Director

Mark has been a member of Sumner Rotary for five years. He recently joined the Maple Lawn PTA and has been a coach at Sumner Parks and Recreation.

Bruce Johnson Community/Senior Service Manager CITY OFFICES Administration/Finance

Community development is the area of City government that interests him the most. He enjoys having a say in zoning, types of housing and commercial development. He says 2004 is an important year for community development because the City’s comprehensive plan is being reviewed. Mark says the thing he enjoys the most about being on the City Council is going to bat for the little guy who feels wronged by the city and trying to facilitate something between them and the staff. “It's very rewarding,” he says.


863-8300 FAX 863-2850 863-6345



Fire (non-emergency)


Golf Course


Parks & Recreation


Permit Center


Police (non-emergency)


Senior Center


Utilities & Billing






CITY ADMINISTRATOR’S MESSAGE The Association of Washington Cities (AWC) represents all 282 cities in the state, and just issued its “State of the Cities” report, reflecting on our cities’ ability to continue to provide services in the next five years.

benefits. And, perhaps most reflective of the overall cynicism in the public sector, 67 percent of mayors and managers felt they disagreed or somewhat disagreed with the statement that “residents of my city trust government.” A whopping 73 percent disagreed that residents of the cities sense value for the taxes they pay.

In a survey of mayors and city managers, 58 percent expressed feeling somewhat or very pessimistic about their ability to provide “citizendemanded services”. A total of 73 percent of city finance directors felt that cities are less able to meet financial needs compared to five years ago. When asked about the situation over the next five years, 82 percent of the finance directors state-wide said cities would be less able to meet these needs. The trend is clearly toward a more restrictive financial situation for cities. The respondents reported on the top negative budget influences, and 61 percent identified the tax-limiting voter initiatives, and 56 percent referred to the cost of employee health

Music Off Main Grand Drawing Winner

So, what does Sumner do about all of this? First off, in regards to the rising cost of employee medical insurance, we’re seeing a willingness on the part of city employees to share in the costs of these increases. For the first time, all seven bargaining units as well as the "non-union" employees have agreed to either pay a share of their insurance premium costs, or to accept a lower-cost “preferred provider” option. The savings to the city this year is about $125,000. In regards to the issue of trust in government, and perception of value for each tax dollar spent, I believe Sumner needs to step up to the challenge of a more aggressive public information program that will provide Sumner citizens with more information about the city’s budget and its challenges.


City Ends Fluoride Program The City Council decided earlier this month to discontinue the fluoridation of the City’s water. Last year, the Pierce County Health Department mandated that the City fluoridate the water. The City installed the necessary equipment and began to fluoridate the water starting this April. The Washington State Supreme Court in June decided that the Health Department did not have the authority to require the fluoridation. With the mandate removed, the Council held a public hearing and heard a significant amount of public input in support of and opposed to fluoridation. In August the Council halted the fluoridation program effective Aug. 3rd.

COMINGS AND GOINGS NEW HIRES: Sean Scott - Communications Mike Ryan - City Shops Ben Blocker - Cemetery Operator I PROMOTIONS/TRANSFERS: John Wells from Parks/Groundskeeper II to Cemetery Operations Supervisor. Tom Bachman from Cemetery Groundkeeper I to Parks/Groundkeeper I Robert Holler from Assistant to Associate Planner.

theLeft, a large crowd enjoyed a Music Off Main concert July 4th by the Swing Reunion Orchestra. Right, Bryan Jones, of Sumner Tractor stands with the young winner of the grand prize drawing of a John Deere bicycle donated by Sumner Tractor at the July 16th Music off Main concert. This was the first two-wheel bicycle for the youngster. His parents are standing behind him. Sumner Tractor was the proud sponsor of every Music off Main concert this past summer and donated John Deere hats, cups, toys and other memorabilia as door prizes for the attendees of the concerts.




Downtown Bridge is Turning Copper The Bridge Street Bridge Rehabilitation contract has been awarded to Intrastate Painting of Seattle. The Bridge Street Bridge project consists of repair ing damaged structural components, replacing sidewalk planking, and repainting the bridge.

Ask Dr. Sumner Q: How much did the traffic calming on Rivergrove Drive actually calm traffic? A: The most effective method to consistently reduce speed where there is a real speeding issue is through traffic calming – or the use of physical measures to reduce speed. The first traffic calming project was finished this summer on Rivergrove Drive, in response to resident concerns about speeding. Prior to the installations, 85 percent of all vehicles on Rivergrove Drive traveled at or below 36 mph. The combination of speed humps and narrowing of driving lanes by re-striping the street has reduced the 85 percentile speed by about 17% to roughly 28 mph.

The new copper color of the bridge was chosen by the Arts Commission to coordinate with the copper roofs at the train station. If you would like to see a sample, walk along the upstream sidewalk (library side) on the bridge.

The Bridge Street Bridge crosses the Struck River at the west end of downtown Sumner.

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) Bridge Replacement Advisory Committee (BRAC) selected the Bridge Street Bridge project for funding under the Federal Highway Bridge Replacement and Rehabilitation Program (HBRRP). The HBRRP provides funding for the replacement and rehabilitation of deficient bridges and for large preventative maintenance projects. The project is scheduled to begin in mid September and will be completed in 50 working days. The bridge will remain open during the day but may be closed at times during the night.

New Commissioners Appointed NEW ARTS COMMISSIONERS Carol Bell is the Head Managing Librarian of Pierce County Library District and formed a partnership between the library system and the City while working closely with the commission on the successful inaugural Sumner Reads Together 2004 book program. Ms. Bell has a Masters in Library Science and was formerly the director of Grinnell Library in New York. Lisa Kane has degrees from the University of Washington and from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is currently a program manager for Microsoft in Redmond. Ms. Kane is also on the Board of Directors for Exodus Housing and a member of the Alliance of Technology and Women.

Speed humps were installed on Rivergrove Drive to slow traffic.

NEW DESIGN COMMISSIONER Jennifer Ahrens holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the Syracuse University. Ms. Ahrens has worked in Rochester, New York, Illinois, and is currently in practice in Sumner. She

has been active with Habitat for Humanity, St. Andrew’s Parish, and historical preservation. NEW PLANNING COMMISSIONERS Long-time Sumner resident Ed Hannus is currently retired, but was formerly project manager for the North Sumner Interchange and held numerous positions within the City of Sumner and the State Department of Transportation. Mr. Hannus is a graduate of Wshington State University along with having a dedicated career in the US Army where he was a pilot. He is active in the Sumner Rotary, Sumner Historical Society, WSU Alumni Association, Phi Delta Theta Fraternity and a former volunteer fire fighter. Brett Morrison has been a Sumner resident for over 10 years and brings the experience and skills of a contractor in the construction industry to the Planning Commission. Mr. Morrison is the owner and president of FSQ Fire Sprinklers in Sumner and holds a degree in Machine Design.



CITY HALL CALENDAR SEPTEMBER SEPTEMBER 1 Youth Commission, 6:30 p.m., Police training room SEPTEMBER 2 Planning Commission, 7 p.m., Council Chambers SEPTEMBER 6 City Hall closed for Labor Day holiday SEPTEMBER 7 City Council Meeting, 7 p.m., Council Chambers SEPTEMBER 9 Forestry Commission, 4 p.m., Upstairs conference room Design Commission, 6 p.m., Council Chambers SEPTEMBER 13 Parks Committee, 5 p.m., Upstairs conference room

SEPTEMBER 13 City Council Study Session, 6 p.m., Council Chambers

OCTOBER 6 Youth Commission, 6:30 p.m., Police training room

SEPTEMBER 15 Youth Commission, 6:30 p.m., Police training

OCTOBER 11 Parks Committee, 5 p.m., Upstairs conference room

SEPTEMBER 17 Volunteer Recognition Reception 5 p.m., Senior Center SEPTEMBER 20 City Council Meeting, 7 p.m., Council Chambers SEPTEMBER 23 Arts Commission, 6 p.m., Upstairs Conference room SEPTEMBER 27 City Council Study Session, 6 p.m., Council Chambers

OCTOBER OCTOBER 4 City Council Meeting, 7 p.m., Council Chambers

City Council Study Session, 6 p.m., Council Chambers OCTOBER 14 Forestry Commission, 4 p.m., Upstairs conference room Design Commission, 6 p.m., Council Chambers OCTOBER 18 City Council Meeting, 7 p.m., Council Chambers OCTOBER 20 Youth Commission, 6 p.m., Police training room OCTOBER 25 City Council Study Session, 6 p.m., Council Chambers OCTOBER 28 Arts Commission, 6 p.m., Upstairs Conference room

COMMUNITY EVENTS September 9 North Sumner Interchange Opening and Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony, 12:30 p.m.

October 30 Street of Screams and Halloween treats at Ryan House

September 17 Volunteer Recognition Event, 5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m, Senior Center

November 13 Veteran’s Day Parade in Auburn

September 18 Police Dept/Special Olympics Fundraiser, Puyallup Elks, 8 p.m.

November 26 Old Cannery Bridge Lighting; 5:30 p.m. & Parade down Main St.

September 19 Sumner 5th Annual Classy Chassis Car Show, 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

4th Annual Holiday Lighting at Windmill Nursery, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

October 1 Homecoming Parade, 4 p.m., Heritage Park to High School

December 4 Fire Department Pancake Breakfast; 7 a.m. – noon

October 23 Sumner Fire Department Pumpkin Carving, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Holiday Parade, 2:30 p.m. Tree Lighting at Ryan House, 3:00 p.m. (since 1926)

Classy Chassis Car Show Sunday, Sept. 19 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Featuring classic cars, trucks, rods. On Main Street and around Heritage Park on Cherry Street.

Sumner High School Homecoming Parade Friday, Oct. 1





Fighting Fires Only One of Many Fire Department Duties


t’s name hasn’t changed, but the Sumner Fire Department is a far different agency from what many local residents might expect in a “fire department.”

The staff keeps busy responding to emergency calls, but relatively few are fires. The majority of calls, as much as 70 percent, are medical aid calls -– heart attacks, car wrecks, industrial accidents, etc. Gone are the days when firefighters lounge around the fire station waiting for alarms. Today, firefighters in Sumner are out every day, for hours at a time, on emergency calls. Last year the department responded to 2,200 calls, which averages out to nearly six calls a day. This year’s calls are expected to exceed 2,500. “For a small city, that’s a lot of calls,” says Fire/Emergency Services Director Steve Stringfellow, who worked for the Tacoma Fire Department prior to joining Sumner last year. “We’re busier than some stations in Tacoma.” The Sumner Fire Department has three firefighters on duty at all times, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The department no longer relies on volunteers to boost its ranks. The staff of 16 is led by Stringfellow and Deputy Chief Brian Schulz.

Some members of the Sumner Fire Department are pictured. Front row from left, Firefighter Brian VanMeter, Fire Medic Jeff Lucas, Captain Greg Reinke, and Fire Medic Lori Grimberg. Back row, from left, Firefighter Lane Walthers, Fire Medic Jeff Berry, Firefighter Jay Smith.

programs and related services in the community. They provide blood pressure checks free of charge at the fire station on Harrison Street and can be seen out in the community conducting fire prevention and emergency preparedness programs.

Sumner residents are fortunate now that every fire crew has at least one firefighter who is also a paramedic and trained in advanced life support techniques. This level of response is crucial in the minutes after a cardiac arrest and can make the difference between life and death.

Fire officials also are responsible for inspecting buildings and reviewing plans for new buildings for fire safety.

Sumner Fire Department crews are on the scene quickly in emergency calls, responding within eight minutes 80 percent of the time. The department’s goal is even higher: to respond within eight minutes 90 percent of the time.

Firefighters and other staff members are involved in the community, sponsoring fund-raising activities such as an annual pancake breakfast, Easter Egg Hunt, pumpkin carving and a clothing drive to assist local charities.

When firefighters aren’t out on a call, they are busy maintaining equipment, training, and conducting fire prevention

Additional information can be obtained on the City’s website:

Expansion, New Entrance Planned at Sumner Cemetery The City has adopted a plan that will guide the next expansion of the City cemetery. This first expansion would be located just west of the existing office and extend to the property line. The expansion would include a new entrance off Valley Avenue. The center of the expanded cemetery would be a cremation memorial garden. A loop road would provide access to several areas around the garden including a rustic rose garden reminiscent of an old farm garden and a natural area where memorials can be displayed. The burial areas along the street would be dedicated to raised markers, which are currently popular with cemetery customers. We will also offer estate areas where families could purchase larger areas. Finally, a new outdoor mau-

soleum building would be added in the next five years. Construction on the expansion will start next summer. Although cemetery burials have remained relatively constant over the past 30 years, people’s desires have changed, making it necessary for the cemetery to offer additional burial and celebration options. The costs of the expansion and maintenance are primarily paid using revenues from sales. The cemetery also has an endowment which helps support and guarantee the long-term maintenance of the cemetery. The expansion plan was designed by Parametrix based on the 1996 Cemetery Master Plan. The City’s Parks Board has also helped guide the development of the design. For information about the Cemetery, please contact (253) 8636345.



CITY COUNCIL CORNER This is the first in a series of columns in Community Connections written by members of Sumner City Council. Each edition, different council members will address issues and concerns of impor tance to them. By Steve Allsop City Councilman My goal as one of your City Councilpersons is simple: to “preserve our community”. Sumner is in many ways a gem. I love the fact that a nationally recognized city planner recently referred to our town as “Mayberry” and admonished us to take great care to not squandor away the special attributes that lead to that feeling. It’s easy to see that we are grappling with growth, so far, successfully. There is a fine line between stifling healthy growth and allowing development that detracts from our community character. If we are to err, I say err on the “Mayberry” side. We can always relax standards if we find them too stringent, but we cannot undue bad projects once they are in place. We are now in the midst of reviewing our Growth Management Plan. Through the balance of this year, there

will be many opportunities for public input. I hope everyone in town will feel free—in fact feel obligated --to provide input. There are some rather substantial changes in the works. “Speak now or...” Steve Allsop

I am excited about our upcoming sidewalk initiative. Many parts of town are far from safe for walking. We aim to fix that through implementation of a plan that will economically provide for sidewalks on at least one side of virtually every street throughout town. Closely related to community character is traffic speed. Far too many folks cruise through town at around 33 mph, turning what should be quiet and safe residential streets into arterials. Therefore, we are implementing a “traffic calming” initiative. If you feel a problem in your part of town, call Community Development and, when you see an infraction, call the police. Please: Be involved. Together, we can meet the challenges we face and make this an even better place to live.

Air Force Rock Band Galaxy Entertains Sumner Crowd From Travis Air Force Base, as part of the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West, the rock group Galaxy entertained a large crowd at Heritage Park on July 7th at a special free concert as part of the Music off Main series. Lead by the talented Group Leader/Musical Director Staff Sergeant Gary Rosenak with vocals by Staff Sergeant Theo Ramsey and Airman First Class Bonnie Schuelke, they were enthusiastically welcomed by all those who attended the concert. Also honored as "Hometown Heroes" at this special concert were all of the military men and women of Sumner who are currently serving in the Armed Forces.


East Main Commercial Rules Change The City Council has made several changes to the regulations along East Main Street. In response to concerns about drive-up businesses and the character of this rapidly developing section of the City, several changes to the City’s design and zoning regulations were made. Franchise architecture, which is defined as architecture that identifies a particular brand or company, is no longer allowed. Franchise or chain businesses would only be allowed in buildings which do not display such architecture. While continuing to allow drive-up businesses, the City Council increased the requirements for when these uses would be allowed. A drive-up business could not be the majority use in a multi-tenant building. The standards for signs also changed to make signs part of the design review process. The next commercial development along East Main Street is starting construction on the northeast corner of Valley and Main. A retail and restaurant building will replace the motel. For additional information about the rule changes or East Main Street, contact Associate Planner Robert Holler at (253) 891-3300.





Steve Allsop

Curt Brown

ITEMS PASSED BY THE CITY COUNCIL: MAY - JULY 2004 MAY ■ Appointed Gary Ganz and Ed Hannus and Brett Morrison to the Planning Commission. ■ Adopted Ordinance No. 2081 Amending the Gambling Tax Rate.

Mike Connor

Dave Enslow

■ Adopted Ordinance No. 2083 Approving the Shoreline Master Program.

Adopted Resolution No. 1125 in Support of a Grant Application to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for a Fish Escapement Project on the White (Stuck) River. ■

Adopted Resolution No. 1124 Approving a Cooperative Purchasing Agreement.

Adopted Ordinance No. 2082 Amending the 2004 Budget.

NEW FEATURE: City Council Corner page 7



Authorized a Contract Award to Scarsella Construction, Inc. to Install Utility Extensions Along 24th St. E. ■

Adopted Ordinance No. 2086 Amending the International Fire Code with Local Amendments.

Approved a Lease Agreement with an Option to Purchase for Golf Course Equipment.

■ Authorized the Award of the West Valley Water Line Extension and Hydrant Installation Contract to DDJ Construction Company, Inc. in the amount of $47,447.68.

■ Approved the 2004-2006 Sumner Police Guild Support Members Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Adopted Resolution No. 1123 Establishing a Small Works Roster Program. ■

Mark Evers

JUNE ■ Adopted Ordinance No. 2084 Repealing the City’s Curfew Law.

Authorized the Police Department to Proceed with Filling the Police Clerk/Receptionist Position.

Authorized Release of the Budgeted Amount of $800 to the Sumner School District to Assist in Funding the Summer Lunch Program Campus Supervisor Position. ■

Leroy Goff

Matt Richardson

Plumbing Codes. JULY ■ Adopted Ordinance No. 2089 Amending the Sumner Municipal Code and Codifying the Shoreline Master Program Regulations. Adopted Ordinance No. 2090 Adopting Amendments to the Zoning Code Implementing the Shoreline Master Program. ■

Adopted Ordinance No. 2091 Adopting Amendments to the Comprehensive Plan Implementing the Shoreline Master Program Goals. ■

■ Conducted a Public Hearing on Ordinance No. 2088 Relating to Zoning Code Amendments. ■ Awarded the Fryar Avenue Bridge Rehabilitation Project to CW Williams Construction Co.

Adopted Ordinance No. 2085 Amending the City’s Building, Mechanical and

Approved Firework Stand Permits.



1104 Maple St. Sumner, WA 98390


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