Council Connection » Comments on SPD Ruse; West Seattle Bridge Update; flooding in South Park and landslide on Highland Park Way; Registration for the agendas of the committees; hospitalization crisis; Free at-home testing kits coming soon; raising awareness of human trafficking; failure in December 911; Virtual office hours


Remarks on SPD Ruse, Fakeing Presence of Armed Proud Boys

You are reading my remarks from a press conference following the revelations that the Seattle Police Department misused a ruse and faked radio calls claiming that a hate group marched through Seattle on June 8, 2020 towards people opposing police brutality protested.

West Seattle Bridge update

Last weekend, the first of two work platforms was raised to the underside of the West Seattle Bridge. Here’s a time-lapse video showing the work:

Watch our aerial platform lift time lapse video

The work platforms will be used to install a carbon fiber sheet and add epoxy injections to the outside of the bridge. Here is a picture of the installation:

Upcoming work includes core drilling of the interior of the bridge at Pier 16 to create access holes for post-tensioning cables that will increase the strength of the concrete in the bridge. Supply lines are laid there to create space for additional tension cables.

Mayor Harrell informed members of the West Seattle Bridge Task Force that he would like the meetings to continue and asked that members continue to serve. I appreciate Mayor Harrell recognizing the expertise and dedication of members. Members have reported significant issues directly to SDOT during planning, and it is important to continue this work to help the project meet the schedule for repairs to be completed on June 30th.

Flooding in South Park and landslide on Highland Park Way

Flooding in South Park last week was caused by King Tides and significant rainfall. Many local residents were affected by the flooding and sewage congestion due to the high water levels. Assistance is available for property damage caused by flooding or sewer blockages. Please contact me ([email protected]) and I will put you through to the appropriate agency to begin the support process.

The city is working to address South Park’s flooding problems through two major projects, the South Park Drainage and Roadway Partnership and the South Park Pump Station. I have already written here about the pumping station project.

Last week and earlier this week the Highland Park Way SW was closed due to landslides.

My office wrote to SDOT about the Highland Park Way SW Landslide Mitigation Plan, noting the critical importance of the Highland Park Way as a diversion route while the West Seattle Bridge is closed. The traffic volume remains significantly higher than before the closure of the bridge.

My message indicated that landslides occurred in 2017; This is a recurring problem. In 2017, I raised the issue of proactively working to minimize the risk of slipping for then-considered supplementary budget legislation.

SDOT responded to confirm the request for mitigation plans and funding, noting that they would go ahead and noting that they had concrete ecology blocks installed where the slide occurred:

After that, traffic was opened to one lane in each direction and has since been fully restored.

The council approved the funding in 2017, and SDOT noted that it had implemented erosion control measures, including plantings and a concrete wall, after the 2017 landslide, which occurred further south of this year’s landslide. this slope has remained stable.

Sign up for committee agendas

As noted last week, the City Council has approved a new committee structure for 2022-2023. Below is a comparison of the new and previous structure for 2020-2021.

You can sign up to receive committee agendas for individual council committees or for all. To sign up, click the button below:

Subscribe to the 2022-2023 committees

If you previously subscribed to the committee agenda, most subscriptions have been transferred to the committee that best reflects the scope of the 2022-2023 committee. Some new committees may require you to re-register.

All committee agendas are posted on the City Clerks’ Committee website.

hospitalization crisis; Free come-at-home test kits

Public Health-Seattle & King County says the situation at our local hospitals is dire. In their live media briefing yesterday, the Washington State Hospital Association had three requests of all of us:

  1. Do not use the ER for COVID testing or mild symptoms. find test pages.
  2. Get vaccinated and refreshed. Find a vaccination date.
  3. Update your masks. Learn more here.

Free at-home Covid test kits: Today the White House announced that you can order free at-home Covid testing kits beginning January 19 at – Free At Home COVID-19 Tests.

To ensure broad access, the program will limit the number of tests sent to each residential address to four. Tests are usually shipped within 7-12 days after ordering. Read more here.

Hospitalization Crisis: Amid our crisis in hospital capacity, I invited Director Dennis Worsham of Public Health-Seattle & King County to present at my Public Safety and Human Services Committee meeting Tuesday. You can watch his presentation here and watch his comments here from minute 1:19.

Director Worsham referred to this New York Times analysis, which shows that people are not fully vaccinated a lot more likely to be hospitalized:

Pause in non-emergency procedures statewide: On Thursday, Gov. Jay Inslee ordered a four-week pause in all non-emergency procedures at hospitals across the state, along with additional measures including calling up members of the National Guard to help deal with the hospital crisis.

Get Vaxed & Boost locally: The West Seattle Vaccine Center is open on Fridays from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm and on Saturdays from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm at the Neighborhood House, 6400 Sylvan Way SW. Vaccination is always free. Make an appointment here or just drop by. (Appointment is required for children ages 5-11.)

Human Trafficking Awareness

On Monday, I sponsored a proclamation proclaiming January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month to proclaim the inherent equality and freedom of all human beings. the proclamation expresses the city’s intention to advocate for law and survivor protection, educate leaders, and promote public awareness and action against various forms of human trafficking.

To report concerns that human trafficking may be taking place, please callWashington Anti-Trafficing Response NetworkVictim Support Line at 206.245.0782or the national human trafficking hotline at 888.3737.888.

More information on combating human trafficking can be found here:

People of color, young people, LGBTI people and people vulnerable to socioeconomic barriers are disproportionately affected by human trafficking. More than 400 human trafficking survivors receive advocacy, counseling and therapeutic services as a result of the city’s investments. I’m thankful for that Domestic Violence Prevention Council and Human Services Department to raise awareness of how human trafficking contributes to family and community breakdown, fuels organized crime and undermines public health.

December 911 failure

At my committee meeting on Tuesday, Chris Lombard, director of community safety and communications (CSCC), introduced the nationwide 911 outage in December, which lasted just over an hour. Most calls continued to be routed to CSCC dispatchers, but were routed through a different number. This was a backup redundancy that worked as intended.

The outage was caused by a contractor – ComTech – performing maintenance on its network. The network includes an “A” side and a “B” side, and if one side fails, the network should default to switching to the other side. When ComTech began servicing the “A” side, calls were not routed through the “B” side as intended. ComTech provides these services through a contract with the state, and the City has no relationship with ComTech.

Shortly after the blackout began, the city sent out a public notice through Alert Seattle that included an alternate number for Seattle emergencies. Unfortunately, this warning went much further than the city itself. The city is still investigating why this happened. This is unfortunate as some people misunderstood the alarm and called, resulting in an uncontrollable number of calls to the control centre. These calls weren’t emergencies, but rather people confirming that the number was working, or because they misread the alert message to mean they should call to test the number. The dispatch center received 1,051 calls in one hour, where it would normally have received 79 calls. That 1,230% increase is shown in this chart:

While the city has no direct relationship with ComTech, King County and the state are investigating the outage and will report more about the outage and how to avoid similar incidents in the future.

Virtual office hours

On Friday, January 28th, I will be hosting virtual office hours between 2pm and 6pm, with the last meeting of the day starting at 5:30pm.

Due to the nature of virtual office hours, please contact my scheduler Alex Clardy ([email protected]) for dial-in information and to schedule a time.

In addition, here is a list of my tentatively scheduled office hours, which will continue as virtual office hours unless otherwise noted. These are subject to change.

  • Friday February 25, 2022
  • Friday March 25, 2022
  • Friday April 29, 2022
  • Friday, May 27, 2022
  • Friday 24 June 2022
  • Friday 29 July 2022
  • Friday 19 August 2022
  • Friday, 09/30/2022
  • Friday 28 October 2022
  • Friday 16 December 2022


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