What they will be dealing with at Monday’s City Council meeting

Some council meetings are more interesting than others but they all shape the opportunities and quality of life in Ferndale.

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The Ferndale City Council L-to-R: Jon Mutchler, Rebecca Xczar (behind Mutchler), Greg Hansen, Keith Olson, Teresa Taylor, Cathy Watson, Carol Bersch and Brent Goodrich (January 4, 2016). Photo: Discover Ferndale
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Monday at 6pm, the Ferndale City Council will convene a regular meeting. Several items are on the agenda including final review and approval of the City of Ferndale (COF) budget for 2017.

According to meeting documents, the beginning and ending cash balances in the proposed budget indicate the City will spend approximately $1.6 million more than expected to be received. Total expenditures total about $29.7 million for the year. Both of these numbers are dramatically less than the adopted 2016 budget which estimated spending about $5.7 million more than would be received with a total of $33.5 million in expenditures.

According to councilmembers who spoke with Discover Ferndale, one reason for these smaller numbers is that decisions on several projects and capital purchases have been put off until later meetings. It is important for the City to enter 2017 with an operating budget in place and these decisions can be put off without delaying that.

Also on the agenda is a City staff request to purchase a residential property near Washington Street and Vista Drive, near the location of a proposed roundabout. Last meeting, councilmembers asked staff to have the house inspected to minimize the risk of surprises (eg asbestos) when time comes to demolish the home. Assumedly, this has been done.

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Also hoping to be adopted are modifications to zoning codes in order to comply with Washington State Low Impact Development (LID) storm water requirements. According to staff, language is being cleaned up for better clarification but no new regulations are being added.

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Proposed “East Slater area” for Annexation Blueprint. Source: City of Ferndale

Updates to the City’s Annexation Blueprint will be proposed Monday. The annexation “blueprint” is intended to identify areas that could be efficiently served by City services. Staff notes in meeting documents that annexations have previously occurred after being requested by property owners. While the City could initiate an annexation, there is no record of Ferndale ever having done that, at least over the last several decades.

The proposed change to the Annexation Blueprint would identify the “East Slater area” as an area where property owners could propose an annexation immediately. To date, according to city documents, no property owners have applied for annexation from this area.

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Four Planning Commission terms expire on December 31st and Mayor Jon Mutchler will be asking Council to confirm his recommendation of the re-appointments of 3 current committee members Jo Ann Moore, Sean Cool and Stacy Miller. Mutchler will be asking Council to approve his recommendation to replace current committee member Yvonne Goldsmith with newcomer Greg Crim.

City Council meetings are open to the public.

 

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