Online voter registration deadline approaching for general election

Locals who want to participate in the November 8 general election should prepare now.

King County Elections will mail general election ballots to all registered voters from October 19, so it’s important that citizens register to vote and ensure that their name, address and signature is up to date.

If you are not yet registered to vote in Washington you have until October 10 to register online or until in October 31 to register in person at King County Elections Voter Registration Annex downtown:

King County Administration Building
500 4th Ave, Room 440, Seattle.
8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. or 2 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. weekdays

To register to vote, you must be: 

  • A citizen of the United States;
  • A legal resident of Washington State;
  • At least 18 years old by election day;
  • Not disqualified from voting due to a court order; and
  • Not under Department of Corrections supervision for a Washington felony conviction.

Voters can check to make sure their registration information is current by:

The Ballard Library Ballot Drop Box (5614 22nd Ave NW) will be open from October 20.

Click here to get the latest Elections news and updates.

City on the lookout for new candidate for Planning Commission

The City of Seattle is looking for a candidate to serve on the Seattle Planning Commission starting in January 2017. Planning Commission members are appointed by the Mayor or the City Council and may serve up to two consecutive, three-year terms.

Currently one position is open; this position is subject to appointment by the City Council. The City is committed to promoting diversity in the City’s boards and commissions.

Persons of color, women, persons with disabilities, and sexual minorities are strongly encouraged to apply. Commissioners must reside in Seattle and serve without compensation.

The Seattle Planning Commission is a 6-member Commission of neighbors that care about the future of our city. They are a group of individuals that have served on neighborhood councils, community design review boards, as well as many other community focused volunteer roles.

“We have a broad range of skills and perspectives that include architecture and design, land use and transportation planning, low-income housing development, and community engagement,” say Commission members.

The Seattle Planning Commission advises the Mayor, City Council, and City departments on citywide planning goals, policies, and plans and provide them with independent and objective advice on land use, zoning, transportation and housing issues.

Members of the Commission have a broad range of skills and perspectives but they are always looking for new voices that bring to light issues facing all parts of the city. They are looking for someone who:

  • brings a commitment to making Seattle a great place to live and has knowledge and experience in land use and planning,
  • has a commitment to community-building and community engagement,
  • has a working understanding of zoning and land use issues,
  • has an understanding of transportation investments and how they impact the neighborhoods around them,
  • can speak to the needs of affordable housing or has an understanding of what role affordability plays in the city,
  • has a passion for communicating planning to a diverse set of stakeholders,

Participation in the Planning Commission is a significant volunteer commitment. This includes attendance at monthly meetings (the second and fourth Thursdays of each month) and participation on at least one sub-committee that meets monthly. Commissioners also attend and participate in relevant public meetings and events.

To be considered for appointment to the Commission, please send a letter of interest and resume by post or e-mail (Valerie.Kinast@Seattle.gov) by October 21, 2016, addressed to:

Valerie Kinast, Interim Executive Director
Seattle Planning Commission
City of Seattle
Office of Planning and Community Development
PO Box 34019
Seattle WA 98124-4019

Please consider including any voluntary personal information regarding your cultural background, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or disability that might assist us in meeting the City’s goal to create diverse boards and commissions.

To find out more information, contact Valerie Kinast, Interim Commission Executive Director at (206) 233-7911 or via e-mail at Valerie.kinast@seattle.gov.

Nearby News: SPD officers investigate possible luring attempt in Greenwood

SPD Detectives have started an investigation after a man reportedly tried to lure a 14-year-old girl on her way to school on Monday, October 3, in the Greenwood neighborhood.

Read the full details from the SPD North Precinct Blotter post below:

Around 7:30 a.m., the girl was walking along Greenwood Ave when a man in a white Toyota Camry pulled up next to her and told her school was cancelled. He then offered the girl a ride home.

The girl continued on her way to school, where she called a family member who reported the incident to police.

Officers searched the area but were unable to locate the suspect’s vehicle. Detectives are investigating the incident.

The suspect was described as a white male, 30 to 40 years old, with a thin build, green eyes, and thick glasses. He was reportedly driving a white Toyota Camry.

If you have any information about this incident, please contact the SPD Special Assault Unit at (206) 684-5575.

Council votes to ban “greenwashing” of non-compostable bags

Last week, The City Council voted unanimously to make Seattle the first place in the nation to ban the use of misleading green- and brown-tinted non-compostable plastic bags.

The lawmakers also moved to prohibit the use of false “eco” labeling on non-compostable bags, and to make permanent Seattle’s five-cent charge for recyclable paper shopping bags.

“Now residents will be able to tell which bags are truly compostable and which are not because bag manufacturers and retailers will help provide clarity rather than confusion,” says Sego Jackson, a waste-prevention expert at Seattle Public Utilities.

According to the City, food waste composting in Seattle has increased every year since 2008, when its collection was made available for all single-family residents.

Many Seattle residents use green tinted compostable bags to collect their food waste. However, most green produce-type bags are made of petroleum-based plastic.

Some plastic bags are mistaken for compostable because they are tinted green, have the words “eco” or “bio” and symbols such as leaves and trees printed on them. Some are printed with confusing terms such as degradable or biodegradable.

When people unknowingly use these “look-alike” plastic bags, they wind up polluting our local compost. The ordinance approved by the Council today, the first of its kind in the nation, will help keep plastic out of our compost.

The ordinance requires that all compostable bags provided to customers by retailers must be tinted green or brown and must be labeled compostable. The legislation also requires the bags to meet strict composting standards in order to be labeled as compostable.

Any provided plastic bag that is not compostable may not be tinted green or brown. Confusing or misleading terms such as “degradable” will not be allowed on bags provided to customers.

The ordinance also makes permanent the current requirement that retailers charge at least five cents for each large recycled paper bag provided to customers. Plastic carryout bags are already banned by Seattle Code and will continue to be banned.

According to the City, since the bag ban ordinance became law, in 2012, residents have continued to increase their use of reusable bags and decreased the plastic bags in residential garbage by half.

PNPC Kids Gear Sale on this month

The popular bi-annual PNPC Kids Gear Sale is on next Saturday, October 15, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Phinney Neighborhood Center Community Hall (6532 Phinney Ave N).

This popular event offers great deals on gently used clothing, shoes, toys, books, strollers, bedding, furniture, safety equipment, sports gear, car seats, swimwear, maternity wear and so much more.

Attendees are encouraged to grab a tote and line up early for the very best selection. Or, enjoy another 50% discount on many sale items starting at noon!

Admission is free.

Find ‘PNPC Kids Sale’ on Facebook to get the latest information on the sale.

Dick’s Drive-In 6th annual walk-a-thon to raise money for the homeless

Local Ballard duo Lars Phillips and JP Osseward are at it again: they’re walking to all Dick’s Drive-Ins in one day (22 miles) to raise money for local charities. It’s the 6th Annual Dick’s Drive-In Change for Charity Walk-A-Thon, and will happen this Sunday, October 9.

“Five years ago I my friend JP Osseward and I (both lifelong Ballardites and 2006 BHS grads) walked to all Dick’s Drive-In locations in a single day,” Phillips tells us. “What started as a fun idea has turned into an event that has more than doubled in size each year and continues to grow – this year we’re expecting more participants than ever before.”

un2

Phillips and Osseward partnered with Dick’s to support their partners, Change for Charity, which supports the local homeless population.

To support the event, Dick’s Drive-In, and local credit card processing company Gravity Payments have both agreed to match up to $5,000 raised, meaning the event could raise $15,000 in one day for local homeless organizations like Mary’s Place, Fare Start, Cocoon House, and more.

This year, local celebrities, including Hawks 3rd round draft pick CJ Prosise, will also be leading separate legs of the event.

The walk will start in Edmonds at 10:15 a.m. on Sunday. To register as a walker costs $30, and t-shirts sell for $20. Those who finish the whole walk will get a cheeseburger at the final location in Queen Anne.

Here’s the planned schedule of arrivals:

1. EDMONDS – 10:15 a.m. [Start walk at 10:40 a.m.]
2. LAKE CITY – 1:30 p.m.
3. HOLMAN ROAD – 3:15 p.m.
4. WALLINGFORD – 5:00 p.m.
5. BROADWAY – 6:30 p.m.
6. QUEEN ANNE – 7:45 p.m.

For more about the event, visit their Facebook page.

Metro seeks public input on expanding late-night bus service

King County Metro Transit is planning to improve and expand “Night Owl” bus service next year for late-night riders, and is seeking public input on a proposal that would offer new transit options for those getting to or from jobs, the airport and nightlife between 2 a.m. and 5 a.m.

Currently, Metro has about 40 routes with some level of late-night service throughout King County. Of these, 20 provide trips after 2 a.m., including three Night Owl routes that loop through some Seattle neighborhoods only between 2:15 a.m. and 4:30 a.m.

The City of Seattle contributes funding to late-night transit operation and is a partner in this effort. Metro’s draft proposal would replace the three Night Owl routes with late-night service on regular, all-day routes that serve the same areas.

The draft proposal also includes new after-hours bus service to Sea-Tac Airport for travelers and workers, for whom there currently are limited options after 1 a.m.

It also includes hourly all-night service on the RapidRide C, D, and E Lines, which currently operate all night but with less than hourly frequencies.

“As Seattle grows, so does demand for safe and reliable transit at all hours,” said Metro’s Interim General Manager Rob Gannon. “This proposal will help Metro better meet the needs of our changing and growing ridership by making the first significant changes to Night Owl bus service in more than 40 years.”

The public is encouraged to review the proposal and offer comments via an online survey before October 30.

The proposal would make several changes, including:

  • Replace current Night Owl routes 82, 83, and 84 with two late-night round trips – around 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. — to each of the following routes: 3, 5, 11, 70, 62 and 120.
  • Extend Route 124 all the way to Sea-Tac Airport after 1 a.m.
  • Improve late-night transfer connections between buses in downtown Seattle.

Current Night Owl routes do not match daytime routes, which some riders find confusing. To improve awareness of late-night bus service, Metro will work to improve customer information related to late-night service options.

Public comments will help shape a final proposal, which could go before the County Council later this year. If approved, it will take effect in September 2017.

Hood Famous Bakeshop opens to-go location on Market

ube

According to Seattle Eater, Hood Famous Bakeshop is opening a brick-and-mortar take out location here in Ballard at 2325½ NW Market St later this week.

Hood Famous Bakeshop is famous in the Seattle area for its Ube (purple colored Filipino sweet potato) Cheesecake amongst other sweet treats.

The bakery was founded in 2014 by Chera Amlag, who specializes in Filipino, Hawaiian, and Asian desserts.

The bakery has held a few soft openings leading up to the official opening date this Saturday, October 8.

Once open, Hood Famous Bakeshop will be open Thursday and Friday 12 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Filing documents confirm Amazon’s involvement with “Project X”

According to GeekWire, recently filed City permitting documents confirm Amazon’s involvement in the local development dubbed as “Project X”.

The My Ballard team initially reported the news back in August when documents came to light that pointed to the opening of a drive-up Amazon grocery service at the former Louie’s Cuisine of China site (5100 15th Ave NW).

amazon

According to the GeekWire report, although Amazon has not officially confirmed its involvement in the project, a “post-issuance submittal” filed with the City of Seattle included the following description: “storage racks insulation plans on main floor for Amazon.”

Check out the below description of how the mysterious “Project X” officially works from the City of Seattle’s planning documents:

When placing an online order, customers will schedule a specific 15-minute to two-hour pick up window. Peak time slots will sell out, which will help manage traffic flow within the customer parking adjacent to the building.

When picking up purchased items, customers can either drive into a designated parking area with eight parking stalls where the purchased items will be delivered to their cars or they can walk into the retail area to pick up their items.

Customers will also be able to walk into the retail room to place orders on a tablet. Walk in customers will have their products delivered to them in the retail room.

According to GeekWire, “Project X” is expected to be open from 7 a.m. – 10 p.m. with 15 employees working on site during peak time expected to occur between 5 and 7:30 p.m. The average wait time for customers is predicted to be approximately five minutes.

The My Ballard team will continue to update readers as more details of the project are released.