by Gina Bourdage

Here are notes from Monday night’s (April 6th) Burien City Council meeting (link to PDF agenda here):

A recent survey found that 50% of homeless men in our area are veterans. In 2005, the Veterans and Human Services levy was passed to generate funding to veterans, military personnel and their families housing and support services. The levy approved $13.3 million dollars dedicated  to help both veterans and residents in need of human services.

Two citizen boards were appointed to allocate the funds to reach specific goals within the program.

Sadikifu Akina-James from the King County of Veterans Affairs broke down the five strategies within the program;

  • Enhancing services and access for veterans
  • Ending homelessness through outreach, prevention, permanent supportive housing and employment
  • Increasing access to behavioral health services
  • Strengthening families at risk
  • Increasing effectiveness of resource management and evaluation
  • Beginning in 2005 the levy will remain until 2011.

For more information visit

Wednesday, April 8th at Dottie Harper Park the city will celebrate Arbor Day by planting a tree in memory of former mayor Dottie Harper. Bring your family and celebrate the holiday starting at Noon.

Burien is proceeding with low watt radio project for emergency broadcasts. In the case of emergency tune to AM 540. The project is projected to be complete by the end of April 2009.

After discovering that the City of Seattle is the only city with laws extending beyond the State of Washington, Burien is now looking into developing or adopting new requirements to set a higher standard for renters in the Burien area [EDITOR’S NOTE: This was an issue brought to the City Council meeting a few weeks ago by a concerned resident who wanted to be heard and it looks like the city is truly listening. It pays to speak up!].

Disputes over Puget Sound Park, located in the northern part of North Highline, cause the areas fate to up for discussion. The City of Seattle wants to sell and build low income housing and just about everyone else wants to keep the area a community park. White Center councils are not in favor of the proposed transition. A public review meeting is set for April 22nd from 4-6pm at 1000 Oaksdale Ave SW in Renton. Everyone is encouraged to attend and voice their opinion.

“Because we are so close to annexation we don’t feel this is a good idea to be making this sort of decision.” – City Manager Mike Martin

The council approved preliminary proposal 291, granting use of land in the neighborhood of 132nd to be developed into single family homes. Currently the lot is wooded and unused. The proposal includes six subdivisions, including a five-foot sidewalk and a storm water run off which current residents would be able to access to prevent drainage issues.

Seahurst Park Master Plan presented a restoration project including restoration efforts to return the area to a more natural environment, improve access to trails and improve natural seawall . Several options for direction area were proposed and are available at

Currently the Parks Department is seeking funding to move forward.

Preservation efforts for Des Moines Memorial Drive and creation of a new memorial park were proposed. The NE corner of South 136th and Des Moines Way South is one suggestion for the location of a new memorial park which would include a memorial wall, seating area and more. Improvement plans would include the current memorial wall at Sunnydale Elementary, but expansion is not likely due to space restrictions.

The current wall does not include all of the Highline residents that died in World War I. The restoration project, with the help of Highline Historical Society, would include all of those names which have been compiled.

The city of Seatac would take on the majority of the cost for the new park. Some fundraising will have to be done to supplement the cost. The Burien City Council supported the efforts.

The restoration committee hopes to have the project complete by 2012. For more information visit

Due to an oversight in the wording of the Business and Operations tax bill the City of Burien collected too much in taxes from some business owners. In all about 35 people were effected to a total of $900.

The City is planning on refunding the $900 and correcting the wording of the tax measure to prevent future issues.

“It’s not only a legal, but a moral obligation to refund the money.” said council member Kathy Keene.

A recent arts commission meeting proposed installation of a sculpture with a fish and a revolving eagle above the fish, made by the Puget Sound Skills center students and designed by a welding instructor.

The sculpture would be included in the BIAS Interum Art Space.

The city council’s next regular meeting will be held at 7pm on Monday, April 13th.

Since 2007, The B-Town Blog is Burien’s multiple award-winning hyperlocal news/events website dedicated to independent journalism.