Notes From Monday Night's City Council Meeting

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by Gina Bourdage

Monday night’s (April 27th) City Council meeting was run under a “business as usual” approach, despite the recent news about Burien City Manager Mike Martin’s DUI arrest.

Many in the audience came expecting to hear Martin address the issue, perhaps even issue a public apology or letter of resignation. However, Martin didn’t say one word about his incident, (which happened Sunday, April 19th), and the only references to it were statements of support from four residents, which you can read below.

UPDATE 12:30pm 4/28: We managed to get a quote out of Burien Mayor Joan McGilton, who said:

“Mike Martin is a very strong asset to the city of Burien, and I hope the outcome is positive.”

Here are notes (link to PDF agenda here, link to video stream here):

Puget Sound Skills Center Instructor Dale Copeland presented progress by welding students in his class. The students are working on a carbon steel sculpture of a eagle swooping down onto a salmon with plans being designed for both animals to include moving parts. The sculpture will weight about 60 lbs with a wing span of more than 6 feet wide and almost as tall. Once the piece is complete it will be displayed in Burien’s Interim Art Space( B/IAS). Where the piece will be installed after its stay at the art space is still up for discussion.

Class member Robert Rose (pictured at right) said “I have taken pieces from each of my teachers and kept it with me.”

The staff of retired UA Local 32 Plumbers & Pipe Fitters includes 350 years experience between them. The teachers are giving a practice learning experience by passing down their trade to their students.

For more information on the course visit

B/IAS Co-Founder Dane Johnson said “This is exactly what we intended for the space.”

On July 2nd, the Burien Arts Council in association with the City of Seattle arts community is hoping to welcome world-renown German artist Tom Severts on a stop to the B/IAS. His visit will be generating attention to growing art communities in neighborhood outside of major cites, and highlighting Burien’s achievements in developing a grassroots arts project.

“We are honored you chose Burien. We are often overlooked,” said Mayor Joan McGilton.

More than 700 people attended the Spring Egg Hunt & Bunny Breakfast. The event was an overwhelming success…literally. Concerns and excitement from the Burien Parks Department over the size of the crowd ignited discussion for future capacity of the event and assuring adequate space for one of this magnitude.

An application has been submitted for the C.O.P.S. Grant (Community Oriented Policing Services) which would pay for 50% of some additional police officers for three years. Police Chief Scott Kimmer believes receiving this grant would be a benefit to the cities annexation efforts by generating a half million dollars for additional law enforcement officers.

For more information on the grant visit

Police Chief Kimmer presented the measure for approval of a proposal that would allocate 10% of 18 cities Justice Assistance Grant to the budget-challenged King County. All 18 cities have to agree on the proposal before moving forward. King County initially asked for 50% of the 18 cities grant money and later decreased the request to 43%.

King County Executive Ron Sims spoke out in strong disfavor to the offer of 10% in a letter to the 18 cities council members.

Burien may see an airport off-site parking lot in the vacant former BBC Dodge property on the corner of 1st Ave South and SW 148th Street. The proposal would help the owner in a difficult economic climate and would rezone the area from SW 156th to about SW 133rd Street. A $1 per transaction rental car tax would generate additional revenue for the city. The proposed rezoning would have a duration of three years.

A six to one vote moved efforts forward to the adoption of the proposed annexation vote. Registered voters in the south neighborhood of north highline would be allowed to vote on their property being annexed by the City of Burien on August 18th of this year.

Council Member Lucy Krakowiak voted no on the motion to place the annexation proposal on the ballot in congruence with her concern for number of residents being too high. She disagrees with the mediated suggestion of 14K residents and believes a more comfortable number would be an additional 10K residents.

For more information on the annexation visit

Comments from Burien residents were voiced on the issue of City Manager Mike Martin possibly being charged with drunk driving from an incident on April 19th were all in support of Mr. Martin.

Resident Dean Parkins said that the famous bible quote sums up this situation exactly: “Those who are without sin may cast the first stone” (John 8:7).

“I hope Mr. Martin does not resign,” said resident Jim Clingan and Burien Planning Commission member. “I know we are all disappointed, but I expect no one is more disappointed than Mr. Martin himself.”

The city adjourned to a private executive session at 10pm to seek an independent and impartial council to review and present details of the incident. The council will decide what/if action should be taken against Mr. Martin.

The public portion of the meeting closed without any further word of Martin’s incident.

As of 11am Tuesday morning (4/28), no official statement had yet been released by the city, nor Martin, but an inside source says that an independent Prosecutor will soon be hired to investigate Martin’s DUI incident.

The next city council meeting will be held Monday, May 4th, starting at 7pm.

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6 Responses to “Notes From Monday Night's City Council Meeting”
  1. Erin Etzkorn says:

    I also heard he had a DUI while working at City of Kent. How many passes should a person get? This type of behavior should not be acceptable on a reoccuring basis. "Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me"!!!!

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    • Mary says:

      Mr Martin has a previous incident with a hit and run in Kent, not a DUI. Just for clarification. I in no way condone his behavior, however I think looking at accountability and realizing no one is perfect is important in this situation. Whom among us has been held accountable for each poor decision we have made in our lives by removing us from a successful position?

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    • Erin says:

      I'm sorry, he was never charged for a Dui in Kent, but he fled the scene and could not be checked for DUI, which made me suspicious. Also, if he has trouble staying on the straight and narrow in his personal life, what is he really doing for the City of Burien?

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      • Chris says:

        I agree on the suspicious circumstance of fleeing. As a person of power he should really have better personal morals than to "flee". I do have to say though, if you are not familiar with his accomplishments for the city you might want to look into how much he has done before asking how good of a job he is able to accomplish. He has done and continues to prove he is an asset in driving positive growth for our community, that fact is hard to dispute.

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  2. Bob says:

    I'm not sure that's true about the Kent DUI. But, I'm sure we all believe in the process, and can wait patiently for our legal system to work out the matter. In the meantime, I'd like to see an apology to the community as he is a city official, and our representative in some capacity.

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    • Dorothy says:

      Bob, when Martin worked at the City of Kent in 2005 he was driving and struck a car that was being pushed by several indivuals and injured one person. He stopped, got out of his car, handed his cell phone to one of the other people to call 911 and then left the scene. Several hours after this accident Martin called the police. Within a few days Martin resigned from his job at the City of Kent and was given 6 months severance pay.
      You can find news articles related to this incident on-line with a little searching.
      See Seattle Times Oct. 1 and 3, 2005 and Tacoma News Tribune Oct. 1, 2005. I couldn't find any articles stating what charges were filed in this 2005 incident.

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