Word on the Street

The latest news in and around Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound

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Archives: Oct. 2010


Puyallup picks Dannenberg as city manager

The Puyallup City Council decided Tuesday to stop its search for a permanent city manager and hire the man who’s been filling the post on an interim basis since the spring.

The vote to hire Ralph Dannenberg was unanimous and was followed by a standing ovation from many of the 40-or-so staff and citizens in the audience.

“I’m honored to do this,” Dannenberg, 62, told the crowd after the vote.

He was the city’s parks director for 12 years before taking over the top executive duties on an interim basis in April when City Manager Gary McLean resigned.


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FEMA grant to help Pierce County with flood mitigation

Pierce County plans to use a $1 million federal grant to buy some residential properties near the Puyallup River that were damaged during flooding in January 2009.

The homes will be torn down and the land turned into open space.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency grant was announced today. It’s covering 75 percent of the $1.43 million project, with the rest of the money coming from the state and county, the county said in a news release.

The grant is through FEMA’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, which provides money for projects aimed at reducing losses in future disasters.


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Residents asked to pitch in on Clarks Creek

Puyallup has joined a consortium working to preserve Clarks Creek, and residents are invited to get involved.

They can plant trees along the creek to slow the growth of weeds, pick up litter and install rain gardens to reduce water pollution.

The creek, which runs along the southwest part of the city, is at risk because of an overgrowth of plants, pet and duck waste and low levels of dissolved oxygen, the city said on its website.

You can read more about it here.

The consortium includes Washington State University Puyallup Research & Extension Center, the state Department of

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Lakewood plans 100 Best celebration

The city of Lakewood will celebrate its selection as one of the 100 Best Communities for Young People for a fourth consecutive year.

The city is encouraging school principals and club and church youth group leaders to send youth delegates to the event in the council chambers of Lakewood City Hall, 6000 Main St. SW.

The hourlong event begins at 6 p.m. Monday. The city’s Youth Council will host the event.

The event will highlight the council’s mission and activities, Make a Difference Day plans and opportunities for youth to get involved in their community.

Jordan LaPier, the

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Last remnants of Never Never Land coming down at Point Defiance

The last remaining vestiges from Point Defiance Park’s Never Never Land – the Old Woman’s Shoe and the stack of giant books – are coming down this week.

Demolition will take place today and Friday on the wood and stucco structures near Fort Nisqually in the park, according to Metro Parks spokeswoman Nancy Johnson. The four-decade-old structures are deteriorating and moldy to the point that they were deemed unsafe, Johnson said.

“There’s nothing that’s even recyclable or reusable,” Johnson said.

The family attraction, which featured playhouses and figurines based on fairy tales, has fallen into disrepair

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Got a pollution-belching wood stove? Local agencies might help you buy a replacement

Residents of some Tacoma neighborhoods and areas of unincorporated Pierce County can get from $5,500 to $8,000 in government incentives and rebates to replace pollution-belching wood stoves and make other energy-saving home improvements this winter.

The grants, whose amounts depend on eligibility and income, will be made through a program sponsored by the city, county and Puget Sound Clean Air Agency.

The program is aimed primarily at helping residents replace wood-burning fireplace inserts with non-wood-burning alternatives, but it also can help homeowners with insulation upgrades, and optional windows and water heater replacement.

It’s limited to people who live in the following ZIP codes: 98404, 98408, 98409, 98444, 98445, 98446 and 98373. Monitors show these areas as having elevated air pollution levels.

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Hunger Walk brought in at least $225,000, Associated Ministries says

A recent walk to help the hungry in Tacoma, Pierce County and other areas brought in an estimated $225,000 to $250,000, and donations are still coming in, according to Associated Ministries.

Half the money raised will go to Emergency Food Network, which serves some 70 food banks, hot meal sites and shelters in Pierce County; half will go to local and international hunger relief agencies, according to walkers’ designations, a news release said.

A copy of the news release follows:

News Release


Hunger Walk raises more than $225,000 for hunger relief

Tacoma, WA: More

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Columbus Day: holiday for some, furlough day for many = no mail service, dozens of state offices closed Monday

All federal offices, the Postal Service and many banks will be closed Monday in observance of Columbus Day.

There will be no regular mail delivery.

It’s a paid federal holiday.

In addition, dozens of state offices will be closed as workers take the fourth of 10 unpaid furlough days ordered to help make up for lost revenue in the economic crisis.

Most local government agencies, such as city and county offices, will be open, and schools will be in session.

The Pierce County Auditor’s office, however, will be closed Monday. It’s a furlough day, too, due to budget cuts, according

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