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COUNTY LIBRARY LEVY EKES OUT A WIN

Voters said yes to restore the Pierce County Library System’s funding. In the Nov. 6 general election, the majority of voters approved a levy lid lift with a 50.21 percent approval rate, with 106,844 voters casting yes votes.

“We are incredibly grateful to voters for believing in their public library,” said Pierce County Library Executive Director Georgia Lomax. “This is a positive endorsement for the value the Library System brings to our communities. We thank the voters for their investment in the Library System.”

The restored levy will maintain library services and return the Library’s levy rate to its full legal amount of 50 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value. This would be an increase of approximately 10 cents per $1,000 of assessed property. The restored levy takes effect in 2019.

The restored levy will maintain services including open hours at 20 locations and online library resources; 1.5 million books, e-books, movies and other materials; staff to support learning with thousands of classes and events; computers, Wi-Fi and technology; and community spaces.

“The voters’ approval is incredibly great news for our communities and the important services the Library System will continue,” said Lomax. “This is an exciting time as we continue our commitment to spark success for Pierce County and provide opportunities for learning, enjoyment and community.”

 

LINCOLN DISTRICT PROJECT OFFICE TO CLOSE DEC. 12

After serving as an anchor point for the Lincoln District Revitalization Project for the last three years, the City of Tacoma’s Lincoln District project office will close on Dec. 12.

“The City will continue to cultivate the relationships that were established and strengthened throughout this extensive process,” said Mayor Victoria Woodards. “With ongoing visits and support from City staff, our partners across the business community and community members will continue to have easy access to City services.”

The Lincoln District streetscape is the cornerstone of the Lincoln Revitalization effort. Construction took place along South 38th Street, from South J Street to South Fawcett Avenue; as well as along South G Street between South 37th and South 38th streets, and on South Yakima Avenue between South 37th and South 39th streets. Key features of the streetscape include roadway, sidewalk, public art and pedestrian infrastructure improvements.

“With upgraded sidewalks and streets, as well as public art components, the Lincoln District streetscape as it stands now has truly raised the profile of the Lincoln neighborhood,” said District 4 Council Member Catherine Ushka. “I am proud of the work that has been accomplished and look forward to the continued evolution of this incredibly unique area.”

While the majority of the Lincoln District streetscape is complete, some work is ongoing which may affect traffic and parking through the first quarter of 2019. This work includes new plantings and the installation of art and an overhead lighting system along South Yakima Avenue. There is also additional work that will take place at the intersection of South 38th Street and South Yakima Avenue, when a lotus design is sandblasted into the intersection.

Additional information and updates about this project are available at cityoftacoma.org/LincolnStreetscape.

 

FORUM TO HELP BUSINESSES RECRUIT TALENT

We are living in exciting times. The labor market is changing faster than ever before, changing the way we hire talent – and the 21st century skills demand a different kind of approach to identifying talent.

Pierce County Economic Development, in partnership with City of Lakewood’s Economic Development, and the Economic Development Board for Tacoma-Pierce County, will host Finding Great Talent, an educational forum.

Register online now at www.piercecountywa.gov/FormCenter/Economic-Development-9/Finding-Great-Talent-December-4-621 for the free event Tuesday, Dec. 4 from 8-10 a.m. at Lakewood City Hall’s council chambers, 6000 Main St. S.W. in Lakewood.

Finding great talent for your business can be challenging, especially during times of low unemployment. Learn tips and strategies for your recruiting efforts from the experienced panel, followed by a time for Q&A at the end of the program.

Panel Participants include Bethany Miller, Work-Force Central, ResCare Business Service Team Business Solutions manager; Paul Many, Tacoma Community House job developer; Geoff Lawrence, Impact Washington account executive; Kaylee Davis, Concrete Technology’s Human Resources manager and Denise Johnson, Port Jobs Education and Career navigator.

 

HOLIDAY WITH LIGHTS OPENS AT WILD WAVES

Santa has set up an outpost in the Pacific Northwest at Wild Waves Theme & Water Park. On opening day, Saturday, Dec. 1, the Holiday with Lights festivities begin with a tree lighting ceremony at 6 p.m. including the master of ceremonies, Santa, kicking off the holidays with tons of caroling and cheer. Kids big and small will enjoy arts and crafts, photos with Santa and his helpers, plus two-dozen theme park rides.

Twenty days of seasonal cheer continues Dec. 2 and 9 from 5-9 p.m. and Dec. 7, 8, 14-23 and 26-30 from 5-10 p.m.

This year, Wild Waves Theme & Water Park will be collecting toys for Santa’s Castle at JBLM, providing support to military families. Donations of new, unused toys, games and books will be accepted each day of Holiday with Lights.

Wild Waves Theme & Water Park has two spectacularly fun shows:

  • “Merry and Bright Sing-a-Long” featuring Merry the Snowman and Bright the Reindeer, who will also be available for pictures. Located in Toy Land at 6, 7 and 8 p.m.
  • “Christmas Tree Light Show” featuring twinkling lights set to popular holiday tunes. Located at Celebration Square at 6, 7, 8 and 9 p.m.

Admission to Holiday with Lights is free for 2018 and 2019 Wild Waves Theme & Water Park Season Pass holders.

 

SOUND TRANSIT SEEKS VOLUNTEERS FOR AGENCY OVERSIGHT PANEL

Sound Transit is seeking volunteers from Pierce, south King and Snohomish counties to help the agency succeed in meeting its commitments to the public. The Citizen Oversight Panel (COP) currently has two openings on the COP, one for Pierce County and one for south King County. An opening for Snohomish County will become available in spring 2019. Sound Transit relies on the oversight and expertise of this dedicated and independent group of volunteers and encourages citizens to apply.

The COP was created in 1997 to independently monitor Sound Transit and make sure it meets its commitments to build and operate a regional bus, light rail and commuter rail transit system. Its 15 members represent a variety of interests, professional expertise and experience. The panel meets twice monthly during normal business hours and acts as an independent oversight entity by digging into agency details, asking hard questions, and reporting its findings to the Sound Transit Board of Directors.

To apply, submit a completed application at www.soundtransit.org/get-to-know-us/panels-committees/citizen-oversight-panel/how-to-apply and a resume to Dave Somers, Sound Transit Board Chair, 401 S. Jackson St., Seattle, WA 98104-2826. To qualify an applicant must:

  • be a registered voter within the Sound Transit District and reside and/or work in Pierce County or south King County;
  • have experience/skills in one or more areas related to the panel’s responsibilities: business management; engineering; financial management; public facilities and services; large projects construction management; government processes; and public policy development or review; and
  • be able to attend meetings twice each month during normal business hours.

Copies of all applications and resumes will be provided to the Sound Transit Board for its review. The board’s executive committee will review and recommend candidates. The Sound Transit Board of Directors will confirm the appointments.

Sound Transit actively seeks to include persons from diverse backgrounds and professional areas of expertise to support agency oversight, planning and operations. Persons of color and women are encouraged to apply.

 

INSLEE APPOINTS PAT SHUMAN TO TCC BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Long-serving former TCC faculty member, administrator and TCC Foundation Board Member Pat Shuman has been appointed by Governor Jay Inslee to the Tacoma Community College Board of Trustees, effective immediately. Her appointment extends to Sept. 30, 2023. Shuman replaces outgoing trustee Gretchen Adams, who served a five-year term on the board.

Shuman worked at TCC as an instructor and administrator in the 1970’s and went on to a career as a corporate organization and employee development professional with Weyerhaeuser Company, Puget Sound Bank and Puget Sound Power and Light. She co-chaired TCC’s major campaign in 2005 and served for nine years on the TCC Foundation board, with three of those years as president. This October she was officially recognized by the TCC Board of Trustees for her years of service to the college.

“TCC is a unique resource for many of our citizens, particularly those with limited access to ways to improve their lives,” said Shuman of her lifelong interest in the college. “I want to help with the work of making higher education a reality for more people.”

In the community, Shuman has served on the University of Washington Advisory Committee and the boards of Tacoma Actors Guild, the Children’s Museum of Tacoma and the Tacoma Art Museum. She holds a B.A. in Social Services from the University of New Hampshire and an M.S. in Occupational Education from Central Washington University.

TCC Board of Trustees Chair James Curtis welcomed Shuman to her new role as trustee.

“In her various roles as faculty member, administrator, and TCC Foundation board member, Pat has always been an ambassador for TCC in the wider community,” said Curtis. “She is a lifelong friend of the college, and we have no doubt that, in her new role as trustee, she will always be a champion for student success.”

 

HISTORICAL SOCIETY RECEIVES HIGHEST RECOGNITION

The Washington State Historical Society (WSHS) has again achieved accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums, the highest national recognition afforded the nation’s museums. Accreditation signifies excellence to the museum community, to governments, funders, outside agencies, and to the museum-going public. All museums must undergo a reaccreditation review at least every 10 years to maintain accredited status; WSHS has been accredited since 2004. Approximately 22 percent of history museums are accredited.

Alliance Accreditation brings national recognition to a museum for its commitment to excellence, accountability, high professional standards and continued institutional improvement. The Alliance’s museum accreditation program is the field’s primary vehicle for quality assurance, self-regulation and public accountability. It strengthens the museum profession by promoting practices that enable leaders to make informed decisions, allocate resources wisely, and remain financially and ethically accountable in order to provide the best possible service to the public.

“We are proud to be an accredited institution. Going through the reaccreditation process ensures we continue to put our best foot forward and meet or exceed standards for best practices in everything from collections storage to visitor services. We’re honored to provide excellent service to citizens and visitors in Washington through the History Museum in Tacoma and the Society’s other programs,” said WSHS Director Jennifer Kilmer.

Of the nation’s estimated 33,000 museums, more than 1,070 are currently accredited. Accreditation is a very rigorous but highly rewarding process that examines all aspects of a museum’s operations. To earn accreditation a museum first must conduct a year of self-study, and then undergo a site visit by a team of peer reviewers. AAM’s Accreditation Commission, an independent and autonomous body of museum professionals, considers the self-study and visiting committee report to determine whether a museum should receive accreditation.

“Accredited museums are a community of institutions that have chosen to hold themselves publicly accountable to excellence,” said Laura L. Lott, Alliance president and CEO. “Accreditation is clearly a significant achievement, of which both the institutions and the communities they serve can be extremely proud.”

Washington State Historical Society’s most visible activity, the Washington State History Museum is located in Tacoma’s downtown core along Pacific Avenue and is part of a thriving cultural scene. The museum features interactive permanent exhibits in the Great Hall, unique changing exhibitions highlighting the Society’s collections, and dynamic traveling exhibitions. Upcoming highlights include the annual Model Train Festival, followed by “Unlocking McNeil’s Past: The Prison, The Place, The People” and “A Thousand Words Worth: Washington Writers Tell Stories with Objects,” created by WSHS. “A New Moon Rises,” a Smithsonian traveling exhibition, will open during summer 2019.

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