Council OKs contract for Evergreen Playfield turf installation; re-elects McCardle as mayor pro tem

Community Relations Director Virginia Clough, top row-far left, speaks to Mountlake Terrace City Councilmembers during their Jan. 4 meeting.

The Mountlake Terrace City Council at its Jan. 4 business meeting approved a tentative construction contract for the turf installation at Evergreen Playfield #1 and then mostly took care of internal business affairs for the upcoming year.

Under the Evergreen Playfield contract, Field Turf USA will install a standard crumb rubber synthetic turf field to replace the current dirt field. The project is slated to begin this month and completion is anticipated by the spring. The construction contract is for nearly $1.8 million. The infill material was previously selected by the council in December 2020.

Turf installation is part of larger improvement efforts at the city complex located at 22205 56th Ave. W. The refurbishing project also included the June 2020 installation LED lighting, which replaced 1970s-era metal halide lighting fixtures.

Doug McCardle

Councilmember Doug McCardle was unanimously selected to continue serving as the mayor pro tem. He was first chosen for the position in 2019 after a decade of being on the city council. No other councilmembers were nominated for the position at Monday night’s meeting, and McCardle thanked the body for its support. Kyoko Matsumo Wright will continue as mayor, in the second year of her two-year term.

In other business, the council approved the award of $25,000 in city motel/hotel tax funds:

– Friends of the Arts will have access to $10,000 to help fund the marketing of its annual Arts of the Terrace juried art show. This will be the 42nd year for the exhibit, which is scheduled to take place from Sept. 17 – Oct. 2, 2021.

– The Tour de Terrace organization will receive the $15,000 it requested for its annual Seafair-sanctioned summer festival. The proposal submitted for use of the funds includes estimates for radio and print advertising to promote the event, which is scheduled for July 23-25, 2021.

Graphic showing lodging tax funding history, courtesy City of Mountlake Terrace.

The city’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee previously recommended that the applications be approved. The lodging tax funds are generated by overnight stays at the Studio 6 motel located in Gateway Place —  the city’s only lodging facility that collects the hotel/motel taxes. That money is then intended to be used for programs and events that will reach an audience beyond Mountlake Terrace and also generate overnight stays in the city.

The city uses the lodging tax funds to reimburse the approved organizations for expenses. If any of the money allocated is not spent or an event is canceled, then the funds will remain in the hotel/motel tax fund balance. As a condition of approval, the applicants are also required to seek other grant funding sources outside of the municipal tax mechanism so that their events are not completely reliant upon city grants.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, “we’ll just see if the events actually happen,” Community Relations Director Virginia Clough said, although she expressed cautious optimism since both will take place later in the summer and fall. “I think there is a chance to have at least part of those events…so we’ll see how this year plays out,” she said.

The council also discussed potential dates and an agenda for the council’s upcoming annual retreat. Councilmembers expressed a desire to have the event sooner rather than later and tentatively penciled in Feb. 20. No specific agenda items were put forth during Monday night’s meeting.

Councilmember Rick Ryan said he would like the retreat to function more as a way for the council to get to know each other better personally. He felt that discussions should focus on potential goals and priorities for the city rather than a workshop of receiving staff reports, which he noted councilmembers already get anyway during regularly scheduled work/study sessions and meetings.

Several on the council agreed with his sentiment and even provided some examples of past team- and relationship-building exercises they felt were valuable during previous retreats. Councilmember Laura Sonmore said that activities working on such dynamics could function to “help improve the dialogue between councilmembers.”

The council also identified liaisons to city boards and commissions as well as with various intergovernmental agencies for the upcoming year.

The representatives to city boards and commissions are:

Councilmember Ryan for the Arts Advisory Commission

Councilmember Woodard for the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Commission

Councilmember Sonmore and Mayor Pro Tem McCardle for the Finance Committee

Mayor Pro Tem McCardle for the Recreation and Parks Advisory Commission.

The intergovernmental board and committee representatives are:

Councilmember Steve Woodard and Councilmember Sonmore (alternate) for the Lake Ballinger/McAleer Creek Watershed Forum

Councilmember Ryan  for the LEOFF I Disability Board;

Councilmember Bryan Wahl and Councilmember Erin Murray (alternate) for the Puget Sound Regional Council’s Transit-Oriented Development Advisory Committee

Mayor Matsumoto Wright and Councilmember Woodard (alternate) for the SeaShore Transportation Forum

Mayor Matsumoto Wright and Councilmember Sonmore (alternate) for the Snohomish Health District

Councilmember Wahl and Mayor Pro Tem McCardle (alternate) for the Snohomish County Tomorrow Steering Committee

Councilmember Murray and Mayor Matsumoto Wright (alternate) for the Alliance for Affordable Housing (AHA)

Additionally, Mayor Matsumoto Wright will continue serving a two-year term on the Community Transit Board of Directors as an alternate, and Councilmember Sonmore will continues her two-year term on the city’s LEOFF I Disability Board.

Under new business, Councilmember Woodard thanked the council again for financially supporting the “Becoming Brave” third annual tribute to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. set for Monday, Jan. 18. Sponsored by the Lift Every Voice Legacy (LEVL) in partnership with Communities of Color Coalition of Snohomish County, it will launch on Jan. 18 — the national holiday commemorating King’s birthday — via LEVL’s webpage. Registration for the event is open here. It is free to all but donations are invited.

The city council’s next scheduled meeting will be its work/study session Jan. 14, which begins at 7 p.m.

— By Nathan Blackwell





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