Word on the Street

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

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Category: DuPont


Feds approve project to reroute trains through Lakewood

The Federal Railroad Administration has approved the proposed rerouting of Amtrak passenger trains through DuPont, Lakewood and South Tacoma following a three-year review that determined the project would not result in significant adverse impacts on the environment.

The decision was announced Monday. The draft environmental study had been released for public review and comment in October.

With the most significant regulatory hurdle behind it, the Washington State Department of Transportation can now finish the design and complete construction using $89 million in federal stimulus funding. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2015 and the first trains are scheduled

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Light up your holidays with these tree-lighting events

Here’s the rundown of tree-lighting ceremonies for west Pierce County communities:

n DuPont, 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, Ross Plaza

The festivities begin when Candy Cane Lane opens at 4:30 p.m.  Participating businesses on Wilmington Drive will open their doors to kids for a candy cane or other holiday treats.  The lobby of the Community 1st Credit Union will open at 5 p.m. so holiday revelers can purchase menu selections from local DuPont restaurants for $5 per plate.  There will be caroling and ornament making. DuPont Forza will host pictures with Santa for a fee.

n Fircrest, 7 p.m. Sunday,

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Two open houses on Point Defiance Bypass this week

Residents are invited to two open houses this week that will provide more details on the recently completed environmental review of the proposed Point Defiance Bypass.

The bypass would reroute Amtrak passenger rails from its current shoreline route between Tacoma and Nisqually and move them to lines that pass through south Tacoma, Lakewood and DuPont. State officials say the proposed route will save up to 10 minutes compared to the existing route, enabling faster and more reliable service. Leaders in affected cities worry about public safety with trains traveling up to 79 miles per hour rumbling through urban

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Civilian hall of fame at JBLM inducts 2 new members

Joint Base Lewis-McChord welcomed two new inductees into its civilian hall of fame Wednesday.

Former DuPont mayor Tamara Jenkins and Ken Swarner, co-publisher and editor of the Fort Lewis Ranger, were recognized during a ceremony earlier today.

Under Jenkin’s leadership, DuPont created a memorial wall to honor fallen service members who lived in the south Pierce County city  — three names will be added on Memorial Day — and in 2010 organized a combined Fourth of July and pro-troop parade.

Swarner’s active support of the military includes organizing events so families of deployed soldiers can have pictures taken with Santa

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Kids learn about baking – and giving back

Students at Pioneer Middle School in DuPont got a lesson in baking bread from scratch earlier this month, compliments of the Vermont-based King Arthur Flour Co.

The program showed students how to bake their own loaves of bread for eating and donating. They learned about the importance of whole grains, as well as some basic science and math that goes into baking.

Students were given ingredients donated by the company to make their own bread at home, and asked to bring one loaf back to school to donate to Tacoma Rescue Mission and My Sister’s Pantry in Tacoma.

Students donated

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Applicants sought for open seat on DuPont City Council

Interested residents have until Feb. 10 to file their applications for appointment to the vacant seat on the DuPont City Council.

Mayor Michael Grayum vacated the seat when voters elected him mayor in November.

Eligible citizens must be registered voters in DuPont and have been a resident for at least one year.  Council members receive $375 a month in compensation.

Residents must submit an application and a letter of interest discussing your applicable experience, philosophy on a council member’s role, and their thoughts on the most significant short- and long-term issues facing the city.

Application packets are available at DuPont

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Cities give cool reception to return of flood control zone

It’s coming down to the same old arguments as Pierce County and its cities weigh the formation of a countywide taxing district for flood control.

Officials from DuPont, Lakewood and Steilacoom questioned Monday night why the proposed flood control district should assess the same tax rate countywide when residents in some areas would benefit from its projects more than those living in other areas.

Lakewood City Councilman Michael Brandstetter said establishing a blanket rate “seems arbitrary given where the risk is” and favored asking property owners in the Puyallup River watershed to pay more given they’ll receive the

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Two Pierce County fire departments get grants to hire firefighters

Two Pierce County fire departments – Tacoma and DuPont – have received federal grants to hire a total of 13 “front line” firefighters to bolster sagging staffing levels.

Tacoma announced today that it received $1,566,699 to pay salary and expenses over the next two years for 10 new firefighters.

The City of DuPont Fire Department received $540,750 in January to hire three new firefighters.

The money comes through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Grants program. The local departments are among four in the state to receive money.

“It’s great news,” said Tacoma Fire spokesman Joe Meinecke.

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