FNC Highlight Reel:
SUPPORT NEIGHBORHOOD ISSUES
by Kirby Lindsay
First order of business at the recent Fremont Neighborhood Council (FNC) meeting – held November 23 – was a call for a volunteer to take minutes. Long-time FNC board member, and former president, Toby Thaler took on the task, but the organization still has a serious need for a regular recording secretary.
Anyone wishing to hone their writing skills while supporting community activism might well consider serving as a recording secretary. In addition to the FNC, the Fremont Arts Council also has this position currently open. All it takes is an ability to write clearly and accurately, and attend nearly monthly meetings.
At this meeting, the FNC covered many issues including a presentation by Greg Phipps and Broch Bender of the Washington Department of Transportation on current plans for construction of the safety fence along the Aurora Bridge. Also, Carol Tobin described the Historic Survey Project presentation scheduled for December 3. Ultimately though, in a chock-a-block full meeting, the Board voted on three specific motions.
Chronic Nuisance Property Ordinance
Linda Clifton, a concerned resident, spoke of continued efforts to fight chronic safety concerns along the Highway 99 – Aurora Avenue corridor. A Seattle City Council committee, led by Councilmember Tim Burgess, have approved Council Bill 116667 which would allow the city to take action, including fines and revocation of business licenses, against property owners for chronic criminal activity such as prostitution, drug activity, assaults and noise. Reportedly Councilmembers Burgess, Nick Licata and Richard Conlin support this ordinance, scheduled for consideration by the full Council on Monday, November 30.
FNC Board member Eric Piel proposed a letter of support, and the Board approved the motion.
Rezone Meeting & Developments – Update
Thaler reported on an open house held November 18 at the Fremont Public Library by the Department of Planning and Development (DPD). According to information he’d collected, these efforts to rezone industrial areas of Fremont started with a 2007 comprehensive plan policy change designating industrial zones as inappropriate within urban centers or urban villages.
Thaler opposed changes within Fremont’s industrial areas IG2 to IC, as it allows larger commercial uses (businesses, he estimated, three times larger than the Fremont PCC Natural Market) and would push out small industrial and artist live/work spaces. Other local residents spoke, one in favor of smaller scale development and support of current uses and another who wants more activity in the zone, but also support for businesses already located here.
Thaler had drafted a letter, to Andrea Petzel at DPD, and after consideration of the content, a motion to send the letter, with changes, passed.
46th Street Mural Project
Clifton spoke again, this time on behalf of neighbors, including herself, that received a City of Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Small & Simple grant to install a mural under the Highway 99 overpass on 46th Street North. She came to ask the FNC for support as a fiscal sponsor, a heavy but necessary responsibility, and a donation of $900. The group envisions a community involved project with an artist, found through public process, willing to incorporate community input on the final design. Also, community members can help paint the final mural – and project funding also includes installation of an anti-graffiti coating.
After much consideration, and agreement to take on the duty by their Treasurer, the Board voted to serve as fiscal sponsor and give a donation.
This hardly ended business for the FNC, which remains a very active, very involved organization. If you would like to watch a meeting, as a participant or an observer, the next meeting takes place January 25, on the fourth Monday, at 7 p.m. at History House (790 North 34th St). Everyone is welcome, especially to this kick-off of their annual membership drive!
©2010 Kirby Lindsay. This column is protected by intellectual property laws, including U.S. copyright laws. Reproduction, adaptation or distribution without permission is prohibited.