Brewster Council addresses full chamber, full agenda

BREWSTER – A packed chamber and full agenda faced city council members at their regular monthly meeting last Wednesday, August 9.
Most significant among the evening’s business was news that the city was recently awarded a $6.3-million-dollar USDA Rural Development (RD) grant that will be used to improve the city’s well water system and address manganese concentrations in the city water (see Brewster lands major RD grant to upgrade water system, this page).
Council voted to approve – contingent upon review and approval by city’s legal counsel and USDA RD) - a contract with J-U-B Engineers, Inc., of Spokane, for the Brewster water facility phase II upgrade.
Police chief Nattalie Cariker updated council on investigative results from the Vista Park Homes arson fire of (date) were forwarded to the Okanogan County Prosecutor’s office and noted that the alleged perpetrators are “very young.”
During city’s second annual National Night Out held August. 1, Cariker said 30 car seat inspections resulted in 22 new seats, each valued at $300, given away.
“We have another car seat clinic next month,” Cariker said.
Council approved the 2017 Mutual Air Agreement with Okanogan County for fire, EMS, law enforcement and other agency service support.
Council also approved a conditional use permit (CUP) to the Jehovah’s Witness congregation for construction of a building on State Way.
Council member John Housden, who lives near the proposed construction site, expressed concern that traffic congestion at the intersection of Hospital Way and State Way “is becoming very problematic” and suggested that more attention needs to be devoted to the sharp turn off State Way for future safety concerns.
Department of Ecology representative, Richard Markley, presented 2015 and 2016 Outstanding Performance Awards to Kerry Heen and Dale Parks for their work with Brewster’s wastewater treatment plant.
Council also approved the Shoreline Element for the City of Brewster Comprehensive Plan following the Department of Ecology’s long-awaited endorsement received earlier in June. Council then approved the second part of the measure, the Shoreline Master Program, a regulatory ordinance.
City attorney Chuck Zimmerman explained that the city needed to address the two-part shoreline element and master program and add them to the city code to come into compliance with state requirements.
Zimmerman speculated that the reason the city hadn’t considered the shoreline policy a high priority is because “most of the shoreline is either already developed or under the control of the PUD.”

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