Lynnwood Today’s 2019 year in review: November-December

Lynnwood Today continues its look back at 2019.

Part 6, November-December

November

The Snohomish County strike team at the base camp in Santa Rosa, Calif. (Photo courtesy of South County Fire)

On Nov. 1, Lynnwood Today reported that three South County Fire firefighters joined a Snohomish County strike team that traveled to Sonoma County, California to assist local fire agencies battle the Kincade Fires. The team was in California for two weeks.

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Four teen passengers were injured in a DUI-related vehicle rollover crash Nov. 2 on Interstate 5 near the 196th Street Southwest exit. A 21-year-old male was driving under the influence when the vehicle struck an embankment and trees before rolling over multiple times and stopping 10 feet from the roadway.

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Edmonds Heights parent Reita Johnston said she is worried a school resource officer (SRO) will treat students of color and disabled students unfairly.

On Nov. 2, Lynnwood Today reported that Edmonds School District officials heard concerns from students, teachers and parents during a recent business meeting about plans to bring a campus police officer to Scriber Lake High School. Some parents questioned the effectiveness of cops on campus and said they were concerned about the effects an armed police officer would have on Edmonds Heights K-12 students. Edmonds Heights shares a campus with Scriber Lake.

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The fire scene at Lynnwood Townhouse Apartments. (Photos by Larry Vogel)

Two children died in a house fire on Nov. 3 at the Lynnwood Town House apartments. The two-alarm blaze engulfed the two-story building and caused columns of smoke visible from miles away. An 11-year-old child who managed to escaped the fire was reported to have been injured. The victims — a 7-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl — were later identified as Shoreline residents who were visiting family.

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Lynnwood sophomore Faith Murray. (Photo by Doug Petrowski)

On Nov. 4, Lynnwood Today reported about Faith Murray, a Lynnwood High School student who suffers from a rare bone disease, and her role on the Royals swim team.

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Lynnwood Human Resources Director Evan Chinn (left) and city IT Network Manager Will Cena (right) presenting city staff’s work with the Government Alliance on Racial Equity.

At its Nov. 4 work session, the Lynnwood City Council heard an update from a group of city employees who are participating in the Government Alliance on Racial Equity. a national network of government employees working to achieve racial equity and advance opportunities for all.

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Kris McDuffy

As the Edmonds School District conducted its search for a new district superintendent, district staff encouraged community members to provide feedback on what they wanted in a new superintendent — inviting community members to attend meetings Nov. 4-6 to give input.

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Lynnwood City Council candidates Shannon Sessions and Jim Smith gathered with supporters at Big E Ales in Lynnwood.

Early results from the Nov. 5 general election reported that Lynnwood City Council candidates Julieta Altamirano-Crosby, Jim Smith, Shannon Sessions and George Hurst led the polls for their respective positions. In the race for the Edmonds School Board of Directors, newcomer Nancy Katims was winning the race for her position, along with incumbent Directors Carin Chase and Gary Noble.

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Denise Fan (center), a first-year University of Washington medical student, observes students using a stethoscope to check a heartbeat.

On Nov. 7, Lynnwood Today reported about the Edmonds School District’s first Doctor for a Day event — a University of Washington program aimed at encouraging students of color to explore careers in medicine. During the event, more than 70 students were able to participate in hands-on activities to learn about careers in medicine.

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Tim Eyman proposed Initiative 976 to cap car tabs at $30.

In response to the passage of I-976, City of Lynnwood officials — as well as officials from other affected cities — scrambled to decide what the next step would be as they faced drastic transportation budget cuts. According to Lynnwood city staff, the initiative’s $30 car tab mandate will strip approximately one-third of the city’s Transportation Benefit District funding, which goes toward the city’s transportation infrastructure program. To learn more, read Lynnwood Today’s Nov. 10 story.

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Gold Star Families Memorial Monument in North Canton, Ohio. Lynnwood’s monument in Veterans Park will be have aspects specific to the city. (Photo courtesy of the Gold Star Families Facebook).

At a Nov. 10 Veterans Appreciation Dinner honoring local veterans, Lynnwood officials announced that the new Gold Star Families Memorial Monument will be installed in Lynnwood’s Veterans Park. In addition to the installation of the monument, Veterans Park will undergo capital improvements to enhance its aesthetics and functionality. The city’s parks and recreation team will work closely with local Veterans of Foreign War Post 1040 on the planned park improvements.

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U.S. Marine Corps veteran Michael Reagan (left) uses a sword to cut cake celebrating the 244th anniversary of the incorporation of the Marine Corps. He was joined by fellow Marine veteran Tom Nasky (second left).

More than 300 veterans, family members and supporters filled a dining hall in the Lynnwood Convention Center on Nov. 10 to celebrate local veterans and their service to the country. The celebration was a collaborative effort between the convention center, the City of Lynnwood and the South Snohomish Veterans Resource Task Force. The event also celebrated the 244th anniversary of the incorporation of the U.S. Marine Corps.

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Elementary instructional coaches Abigail Espegard (left) and Joey Mertel (right) brief the Edmonds School Board of Directors on the proposed Units of Study for Reading curriculum for K-6 grade students.

At its Nov. 12 business meeting, the Edmonds School District Board of Directors held its first reading for the proposed Units of Study in Reading curriculum, which teaches students to read through classroom workshops. The curriculum is part of Teachers College Reading and Writing Project co-founded in 1981 by educator Lucy Calkins. During the meeting, the council heard mixed feedback from community members about the proposed curriculum.

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(Left to right): State Sen. Jesse Salomon, Cameron Caldwell and Lindsey Webb.

At its Nov. 18 work session, the Lynnwood City Council held its annual Legislative Engagement Discussion, where the council and Mayor Nicola Smith invited representatives from local, county, state and federal agencies to hear about the work the city has been doing to become “a regional model for a sustainable, vibrant community with engaged citizens and an accountable government.”

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Northgate Mall renovations are expected to drive holiday sales to Alderwood Mall. (Photo by Teresa Wippel)

After Northgate Mall closed to make room for a mixed-use development, Alderwood Mall saw an increase in business. From shoppers to senior mall walkers, people looking for a dry mall experience have migrated 10 miles north to the Lynnwood-based mall. On Nov. 24, Lynnwood Today reported about the effects the Northgate Mall closure has had on Alderwood Mall.

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The cold weather shelter will once again be housed this year at Maple Park Church in Lynnwood. (Photo courtesy Facebook)

With a new volunteer board, the South Snohomish County Cold Weather Shelter now aims to provide a more sustainable service for the community’s homeless. Eleven volunteers now serve on the shleter’s board and are working to provide more focused attention to specific details when running the shelter. Read Lynnwood Today’s Nov. 26 story about the shelter’s efforts.

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Councilmember Ian Cotton (second left) discusses the proposed 2020 property tax levy at the Lynnwood City Council’s Nov. 25 business meeting.

The Lynnwood City Council unanimously voted at its Nov. 25 meeting not to increase the city’s property tax rate and to keep the tax levy rate at 57 cents per $1,000 of assessed value — the same rate as 2019. With that rate, the city anticipates levying $4.3 million in 2020.

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Edmonds School District officials, staff and students honored School Board President Diana White (center) for her eight years on the board. White is retiring from the board at the end of November.

The Edmonds School District Board of Directors and district staff bid an emotional farewell to former-Board President Diana White at its Nov. 26 business meeting. White was elected to the board in 2014.

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Digital renderings of the proposed seven-lane 196th St. S.W. street widening. (Courtesy of the City of Lynnwood)

In response to the passage of I-976, Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee announced Nov. 26 that all city transportation projects in the state not yet underway were to be postponed. The announcement put projects like Lynnwood’s plans to widen 196th Street Southwest and other city projects in jeopardy.

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Four-legged runners also participated in the Turkey Trot.

The sixth annual Turkey Trot 5k to support the Lynnwood Food Bank on Nov. 28 drew record crowds and donations. The event attended by 199 participants who ran,  jogged or walked around the Lynnwood Municipal Golf Course at Edmonds Community College and raised $4,800 for the food bank — which will receive $4,000 after expenses are covered.

December

Northline Village would include a mix of retail, commercial and residential uses.

At its Dec. 2 work session, the Lynnwood City Council reviewed the final draft development agreement for the proposed Northline Village mixed-use development. The draft agreement included proposed amendments and feedback from council that was previously brought up at the council’s July 15 meeting. During the discussion, some councilmembers were concerned about the lack of assurances that the site will include affordable housing.

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Snohomish County Prosecuting Attorney Adam Cornell came before the Edmonds Diversity Commission Dec. 3 to defend the decision of his office not to charge a Lynnwood woman with malicious harassment in connection with racially motivated threats involving two African American teenagers outside Edmonds’ Harvey’s Lounge.

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Hundreds gathered for Lynnwood’s annual Christmas Tree Lighting hosted by Silver Creek Family Church Dec. 7. Unlike previous years, the tree lighting did not signal the end of the ceremony and took place in the middle of the ceremony to give people more time to linger and enjoy the tree.

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The Pelkey family with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Heritage Park’s annual Cookies with Santa event.

The Lynnwood-Alderwood Manor Heritage Association (LAMHA) hosted its annual Cookies with Santa event at Heritage Park on Dec. 8 where families gathered to take photos with Santa and Mrs. Clause. Also featured at the Wicker’s Building was an Honor and Remember Tree displayed in the building’s lobby, featuring photos of Washington state military veterans who died in combat.

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After months of discussion, the Lynnwood City Council voted at its Dec. 9 business meeting to approve plans for the proposed Northline Village mixed-use development. Prior to voting on the ordinance, the council held a public hearing to hear testimony from residents who were concerned about the lack of assurance that the new development would offer affordable/low-income housing.

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The Edmonds School District issued a letter Dec. 9 regarding student safety after a Meadowdale High School student reported that a man attempted to lure the student into his car.

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Re-elected Edmonds School Board Directors (left to right) Carin Chase and Gary Noble with new Director Nancy Katims and Superintendent Kris McDuffy.

During its Dec. 10 business meeting, the Edmonds School Board welcomed the newly elected and re-elected board members. Also during the meeting, the board heard support for the proposed reading curriculum.

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Fish biologist and Students Saving Salmon club advisor Joe Scordino explains to the students how to load eggs into the hatch boxes.

The Students Saving Salmon clubs at Edmonds-Woodway and Meadowdale high schools gathered at the Willow Creek Fish Hatchery on Dec. 15 to place more than 5,000 Coho salmon eggs in specially designed hatch boxes which they would later submerge directly into the waters of Willow, Shell and Lund’s Gulch Creeks.

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Lynnwood resident Patrick Crosby erected a 14-foot Christmas tree dedicated to military families.

A Lynnwood man erected a Christmas tree in his front yard decorated with photos of local military personnel who died in combat and asked for the community’s help sending their families holiday messages by signing cards. Patrick Crosby partnered with the Washington state chapter of the American Gold Star Mothers and Campbell’s Tree Farm in Snohomish County to send cards with messages from community members to more than 70 military families. To learn more, read Lynnwood Today’s Dec. 17 story.

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On Dec. 18, the Edmonds School District announced it received an anonymous $18,000 donation to pay off meal debt for nearly 2,000 students. The donation was made by the family of former Hazelwood Elementary School students who approached the school’s principal hoping to help the school. The family then decided to make a larger contribution after learning about meal debt in the district.

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Swedish Edmonds Hospital workers marching the picket line in August 2019. With the sides no closer to agreement, the workers are threatening to strike early next year.

Nurses and caregivers at Swedish Hospital announced Dec. 19 that they were moving closer to an “imminent strike,” claiming that patient care and severe understaffing have worsened and executive pay has ballooned since Swedish was taken over seven years ago by Providence, Washington’s largest health care corporation.

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A sign above Rabbi Berel Paltiel’s car wishes everyone a happy Chanukah during the 8th Annual Menorah Lighting ceremony Sunday at Lynnwood City Hall.

More than 250 people gathered at Lynnwood City Hall on Dec. 22 for the 8th Annual Menorah Lighting ceremony celebrating the first night of Hanukkah. People from multiple generations sang traditional Jewish songs and food.

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One of the last cars to be tested pulls into the bay at the Lynnwood emissions test station Dec. 31. (Photo by Larry Vogel)

On Dec. 30, Lynnwood Today reported that after 38 years Washington state’s emission testing program would end. Starting Jan. 2, emissions tests were no longer required in order to renew vehicle registrations. Washington’s Legislature set the wheels in motion to end the testing program back in 2005, when it adopted more stringent emissions standards for new cars and trucks. Those standards took effect in 2008, and vehicles 2009 and newer were exempted from the testing requirement. The program officially ended at the end of business on Dec. 31.

–By Cody Sexton

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