Council Connection »SDOT West Seattle Bridge Virtual Public Meeting July 21; Conclusions of the Police Accountability Office on the presence of agents in the January 6 insurrection; Federal Judge Upholds Seattle’s Fair Chance Housing Act; Return weeks from July 12 to 26; Virtual office hours

SDOT West Seattle Bridge Virtual Public Meeting July 21

On July 21, SDOT will hold a virtual public meeting on the West Seattle Bridge. Here is SDOT’s announcement:

On July 21 at 5:30 p.m., the West Seattle Bridge Program will host a virtual public meeting to let you learn more about the work we are doing to reopen the bridge in mid-2022 and ask your questions.

Members of our team will provide updates on ongoing repair efforts on the West Seattle High Bridge (High Bridge), expanded access to the Spokane St Swing Bridge (low bridge) and our work to improve l Access to and around West Seattle through Reconnect West Seattle, Home Zone, and Neighborhood Travel options. We will also have plenty of time for you to submit questions, which will be answered live during our meeting by a panel of team members.

How to join the meeting

On Wednesday July 21 at 5:30 p.m., join us in one of two ways:

  • To join by computer or mobile device | Click on this link to launch Zoom:
  • To reach by phone | Dial (253) 215 8782, then enter the webinar ID: 891 9066 3370.

We will provide English subtitles and interpretation in Spanish, Mandarin and Vietnamese.

Further information is available at SDOT blog post.

Findings of the Police Accountability Office on the presence of agents in the January 6 uprising

Yesterday, the Police Accountability Office released its investigation of six SPD officers in Washington, DC. during the January 6 uprisinge. I released the following statement:

“On January 6 in Washington DC, an insurgency targeted the United States Capitol and our democratic institutions and attempted to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power that is the cornerstone of our democracy. This assault resulted in the death of a Capitol police officer. Our elected leaders in Congress were in grave danger.

“Upon hearing that Seattle police were in Washington, DC on January 6 to attend the pre-insurgency rally, I heard very strong concerns from many voters.

“The Discipline Committee’s recommendations to terminate two officers for unprofessionalism and violations of law and policy are sound and a necessary step in building public confidence in the accountability and justice of the police.

“Seattle police officers constitutes the largest known contingent police officers present at the rally on January 6, plus than any other municipality in the country. Many of my constituents wonder if they can trust the officers who attended “Stop the Steal” to uphold the mission and principles of SPD’s Code of Ethics. If they were “directly involved” insurgency, or if they attended with the intention of passively supporting the illegal insurgency and violent assault on our nation’s Capitol, none of these acts is an example of protected freedom of speech and our support for freedom of expression should not protect responsibility for these acts.

SPD’s code of ethics states: “As an employee of the Seattle Police Department, I am responsible for supporting the mission and principles of the Seattle Police Department. These principles are justice, excellence, humility and harm reduction. In addition, the political norms and duties states: “Regardless of service status, employees may not engage in behavior that undermines public confidence in the department, the officer, or other officers …. He did not the Department’s intention to interfere with or limit the freedoms, privacy and freedoms of employees; discipline will only be imposed if there is a connection between the conduct and the employee’s duties, rank, assignment or responsibilities.‘”(emphasis added)

“The strong ‘objection’ and the qualification of the investigation as ‘illegal and discriminatory’ by the Seattle Police Officers Guild (SPOG) in their opposition to the OPA investigation, seems only intended to unreasonably delay liability . Case law gives law enforcement agencies more leeway to restrict speech and association, citing their “increased need for order, loyalty, morale and harmony”.

“At the start of the investigation, I told Director Myerberg that I thought the investigation should go beyond asking what actions SPD employees took while in DC on January 12 and should include an investigation into whether SPD employees traveled to DC knowing, like so many people, that there was going to be an attempted insurgency. According to a study by a non-partisan non-profit Advancing democracy, before January 6, calls for violence proliferated in tens of thousands of comments on posts on Twitter, TikTok, right-wing platform Speaking, an online forum created last year to support Donald Trump, and other forums. Since 2006, the FBI has warned us that extremist groups have close ties to law enforcement.

“If officials knowingly went to a location to support people whom they knew intended to attempt an insurgency, even though their participation was as a passive observer, this is a” clear connection between conduct and homework or … offense that deserves to be terminated. I will review the OPA’s investigation by inquiring whether questions were put to the four officers without substantiated conclusions and whether evidence was sought, in order to determine prior knowledge that they had of the violent events planned during the the Capitol uprising of January 6.

Federal judge upholds Seattle’s fair housing law

Earlier this week, a federal judge upheld the Fair Chance Housing order that I sponsored. Below is the press release that City Attorney Pete Holmes and I issued:

U.S. District Court Judge John Coughenour today rejected a challenge to the city’s Fair Chance housing law, which prohibits most landlords from denying applicants housing or taking other action against tenants based on their criminal history. The city council passed the law in 2017 and it remained in force for the duration of the case, which began in 2018.

Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes said: “A criminal conviction should not be a life sentence to be lived on the streets. Access to housing is essential to stabilize a person’s life, so I thank the judge for making the right legal decision today. This case is another victory for the city by Deputy City Attorneys Roger Wynne and Sara O’Connor-Kriss and our outside lawyer, Jessica Goldman.

Board Member Lisa Herbold (District 1, West Seattle & South Park), co-sponsor of the legislation, said, “When Seattle became the first city in the country to adopt Fair Chance Housing in 2017, we knew it would unfairly change the lives of many people. rejected as tenants because of a criminal record, despite having served their sentence, or for others, never convicted in the first place. This policy is more important today than ever. Policymakers are reinventing the criminal justice system, and the public health benefits of being housed during a deadly pandemic are evident. In addition, preventing people who have fulfilled the conditions of their sentence from accessing housing is a recipe for recidivism. With housing, a person is seven times less likely to re-enter the criminal justice system. I would expect anyone in favor of a safer Seattle to support this move. “

Herbold added, “Thank you to the city attorney’s office and everyone who worked on this case, for successfully defending this policy, which gives so many Seattle residents a fair chance to access housing. “

Today’s court ruling represents yet another loss for the Pacific Legal Foundation, which recently unsuccessfully challenged the Democracy Voucher program and Seattle’s First-in-Time Act. In a lawsuit still ongoing, PLF faces a setback in January in their case against Seattle and Governor Inslee’s eviction moratoriums, the city’s three- to six-month overdue rental plan order and the city’s six-month eviction defense after the end of the current moratorium on COVID-19 evictions.

the Fair Chance Housing Ordinance has made an unfair practice for landlords and tenant screening services to “demand, disclose, investigate or take adverse action against a potential occupant, tenant or member of their household, on the basis of any record of arrest, conviction or criminal history ”, subject to certain exceptions.

The owners represented by the Pacific Legal Foundation challenged the order, claiming it violated their constitutional rights to free speech and due process. Justice Coughenour dismissed their claims.

Today’s ruling was informed by a state Supreme Court ruling that answered Justice Coughenour’s questions on the substantive Washington due process law. The Supreme Court Decision 2019 overturned more than sixty previous rulings that had hampered the ability of Washington governments to enact and enforce laws for the benefit of their residents.

Return weeks from July 12 to 26

In partnership with the Downtown Seattle Association, the city recently announced a series of Welcome Back Weeks events in downtown neighborhoods from July 12-26.

Welcome Weeks are part of the effort to restore downtown to the city, with the goal of bringing workers, small businesses and visitors back to downtown

Welcome Back Weeks will feature promotions in downtown neighborhoods, with large-scale events in the Chinatown-International District, Pioneer Square and Westlake. Details on all events, including live music, can be found here.

All three large-scale events will include pop-ups on the Seattle Fire Department’s vaccines, with Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer available.

Virtual office hours

On Friday July 30, I will be hosting virtual office hours between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., with the last meeting of the day starting at 5:30 p.m.

Due to the nature of virtual office hours, please contact my planner Alex Clardy ([email protected]) to receive call information and schedule a time.

Additionally, here is a list of my tentatively scheduled office hours that will continue as virtual office hours until specified otherwise. These are subject to change.

  • Friday, August 20, 2021
  • Friday, September 24, 2021
  • Friday, October 29, 2021
  • Friday, December 17, 2021

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