Word on the Street

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

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Category: Lakewood


VIDEO: Washington State Fair Traveling Farm visits Lakewood elementary school

The Washington State Fair Traveling Farm made its final stop of the school year last week at Lake Louise Elementary School in Lakewood.

It teaches kids about farming and food production using a customized tractor-trailer that drives to schools within a 50-mile radius of the fairgrounds in Puyallup.

A story about the program will be featured in The News Tribune later this week. Below is a preview of what the mobile classroom has to offer kids.


Need a cavity filled? Pierce College Dental Hygiene Clinic offers affordable care

People looking for dental care can find it at the Pierce College Dental Hygiene Clinic in Lakewood.

The program operates the clinic at the college’s Fort Steilacoom campus in Lakewood. Patients are treated by students under close supervision of professors, who are licensed dental hygienists and dentists.

“Students render the care, and the licensed dental hygienists and dentists check all patient treatment,” said Monica Hospenthal, the program director.

The clinic incorporates $700,000 worth of state-of-the-art dental equipment that was installed last fall.

Patients can receive a range of preventive care and treatment including cleanings, sealants, and amalgam (silver) and composite

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As election season approaches, a dearth of open seats for Lakewood, UP city councils

Nearly all the incumbents up for election on the Lakewood and University Place city councils will run for new four-year terms.

With filing week less than three weeks away, just one newcomer has stepped forward in either city so far. Don Daniels, chairman of the Lakewood Planning Advisory Board, announced he is  running for the seat that Councilwoman Helen McGovern will vacate near the end of the year.

Daniels was one of 11 other candidates to apply to fill the council seat vacated by former Mayor Doug Richardson, but the council picked McGovern, who served on the council

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Lakewood toughens stance on sewer fee

Lakewood city officials intend to initiate foreclosure proceedings against the owners of four apartment complexes for failure to pay a required sewer fee.

In spending $18 million to extend sewer service to Tillicum and Woodbrook, the city’s two poorest neighborhoods, the City Council in 2011 gave property owners five years to connect but required they pay a monthly “availability fee” if they chose to wait.

 The approach gave leniency to property owners who couldn’t afford the cost to connect immediately and revenue to the city to maintain the new sewer pipes. Too few property owners

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Lakewood launches recruitment for new city manager

The city of Lakewood has begun the formal recruitment for its new city manager.

Applications are due by May 12, and the City Council hopes to have a new city manager on board by June.

The advertised salary for the position is between $140,000 and $175,000 in addition to “excellent” benefits.

Application materials posted last week show that the city is seeking a “progressive ‘hands-on’” manager with prior experience in community and economic development. Two of the city’s top priorities are to develop a vision for its city center and continue redevelopment of the once crime-ridden stretch of Pacific Highway

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Lakewood sues to stop rerouting of Amtrak trains

The city of Lakewood has sued the state to stop the proposed rerouting of Amtrak passenger trains through the community in its tracks.

The city claims that the Washington State Department of Transportation’s environmental review of the project glossed over traffic and neighborhood impacts on Lakewood and, specifically, its isolated Tillicum neighborhood by using incorrect or insufficient information.

The city filed the lawsuit Wednesday in Pierce County Superior Court.

The three-year environmental review, approved by federal officials on March 1, concluded moving Amtrak trains from the waterfront route around Point Defiance to an inland route passing

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Neighbors ready for Friday opening of Camp Murray gate

Camp Murray will open its new gate Friday as some residents in neighboring Tillicum wait to see if their worst fears about the increased traffic are borne out.

Officials at the headquarters of the Washington Military Department said they’ve invested about $1 million in off-base traffic improvements required by the city to ensure the neighbors’ concerns aren’t realized.

“The new Camp Murray gate will provide a safer avenue to work for our employees, and will lessen some of the current traffic challenges in the surrounding community,” said Maj. Gen. Bret Daugherty, director of the Washington Military Department. “We believe the

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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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