Long Beach restrooms

The new Long Beach comfort station will look something close to this standard design.

LONG BEACH — The City of Long Beach will get its Bolstad bathroom renovation after all.

Long Beach City Council approved a restroom renovation contract, as well as numerous others at its May 6 meeting. Other council focuses included the regional biosolids plant, car charging stations, city staff policies and city projects.

The council’s next meeting will be at 7 p.m. on May 20. The public is welcome to attend the meeting, located at Long Beach City Hall, 115 Bolstad Avenue.

Bolstad restroom contract

Councilors approved a contract for the city’s Bolstad restrooms project. The contract is between the city and construction company CXT. The renovation will cost the city $173,205.69.

The current bathrooms will be demolished and replaced with a four-bathroom building. The design is similar to Ilwaco’s public restrooms.

The project had been discussed for several months. The council previously turned down project bids twice because they were too expensive.

Biosolids plant

The Council approved an agreement between the city and engineering firm Gray & Osborne for the regional biosolids treatment plan. The agreement, which costs the city $559,860, covers construction, management and inspection services for the plant.

“We’re on the right track at this point in time,” Mayor Jerry Phillips said.

Total project costs should be about $6.5 million, which is about a million dollars less than the city originally budgeted for, City Administrator David Glasson said.

Car charging stations

Councilors approved a contract between the city and ChargePoint. The contract establishes a fee for using the city’s car charging station. The fee is $0.25 per kilowatt hour.

The city will pay $3,474 over three years to run the charging station. The $0.25 fee should cover most of the city’s costs for maintaining the charging station, Glasson said.

Sand hauling fees

The Council approved amended sand hauling fees. The updated fees are more expensive than the city’s previous fees. The city hadn’t updated sand hauling fees since 1997, Glasson said.

“City staff recognized that it was time to amend these fees and incorporate inflation,” Glasson said.

The charge per truck increased from $15 to 40; charge per 10 cubic yards delivered in city limits increased from $2.50 to $5; and charge per 10 cubic yards delivered outside city limits increased from $5 to $10.

911 services

Councilors passed an interlocal agreement between the city and the Pacific County Board of County Commissioners. The agreement provides 911 service for the city.

Long Beach will contribute $42,226.99 for 2019. 911 services are provided by Pacific County Communications (PACCOM) and local law enforcement.

Grant application

Councilors discussed applying for a grant which would help fund city development projects. The city would likely use the grant money for road improvements on Washington Avenue.

“We still have to fix the street. If we don’t get the grant we’ll have to pay the whole bill,” Glasson said.

The city could get up to $750,000 from the grant. The council will hold a public hearing at its May 20 meeting.

The city can choose whether to use grant money to work on road updates to the Seaview border or past the border. Councilors Del Murry, Tina McGuire and Holli Kemmer agreed the city shouldn’t go past the Seaview border.

How far road updates go determines how much the city and ratepayers would have to pay for the project.

“If we don’t apply for the grant and miss a deadline then we’re out,” Phillips said. “If we apply to it, we can always turn it down.”

Discovery Trail signage

The Council discussed purchasing new signs for the Lewis & Clark Discovery Trail.

“I’m not a happy camper with the trail signage,” Phillips said.

Phillips wants the trail to have minimal signage that’s uniform. Currently, there are a variety of different signs posted along the trail.

Councilors reviewed some potential sign designs and discussed the possibility of putting signage on the trail path. The city recently painted “no skateboarding” signs on the sidewalks downtown.

Updated trail signage is part of the city’s 2019 budget, Glasson said. The cost of updating signage will be known once councilors choose what signage they want.

Proclamations

Phillips acknowledged National Safe Boating Week with a supportive proclamation. May 18 to May 24 is National Safe Boating Week.

“The Coast Guard estimates that human error accounts for 70 percent of all boating accidents and that life jackets could prevent nearly 85 percent of boating fatalities,” the proclamation reads.

About 650 people die each year in boating-related accidents, according to the Coast Guard. The week is meant to increase safety and fun for recreational boaters.

Phillips also acknowledge National Mental Health Month, which is May.

“I call upon the citizens, government agencies, public and private institutions, businesses and schools in the City of Long Beach to recommit our community to increasing awareness and understanding of mental health, the steps our citizens can take to protect their mental health, and the need for appropriate and accessible services for all people with mental health conditions,” reads the proclamation.

Peace of Mind Pacific County and the Stepping Up Initiative will hold the 10th annual mental wellness walk on Saturday, May 11. The walk starts at 9 a.m. at the Bolstad Approach, going north on the Discovery Trail. A silent auction, raffle and other goods will be available at the event.

Basketball tournaments

Ilwaco High School Girls Varsity Basketball Coach Ned Bittner announced the city will once again be hosting basketball tournaments in June. Throughout two weeks, starting June 14, the Peninsula will host at least 25 basketball teams at a time. There will be multiple basketball camps such as Ilwaco’s Battle at the Beach.

Over 100 teams total are expected to visit during the two-week stretch.

Kemmer thanked Bittner for his effort with the camps.

“I’ve never seen such a busy June as last year,” Kemmer said. “Town was buzzing like it was the kite festival or the Fourth of July.”

4th Street

The Council held a public hearing on a proposed right-of-way vacation at 4th Street NE. Resident John Belisle requested the vacation so he could use the area in question as a driveway to his home at 310 4th Street NE.

“I believe 4th Street is more than wide enough to vacate 12.5 feet and not cause any issues with further street development in the future, if the city was to add sidewalks,” Belisle said in his request.

The council will discuss the requested vacation at its May 20 meeting.

Personnel policies

Councilors approved updates to the city’s personnel policy. Changes were made to the city’s policies on working hours, absenteeism and tardiness.

One of the changes allows city staff to text bosses they won’t be coming into work. Before, staff was expected to call out.

“I’m interested to see how many more times people call out of work by texting versus calling,” McGuire said.

Councilors will review how the updated policies are working next year.

“This isn’t written in stone. We can always go back and modify employee policies,” Phillips said.

Alyssa Evans is a staff writer for the Chinook Observer. Contact her at 360-642-8181 or aevans@chinookobserver.com

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