Celebrate National Period Day by protesting the ‘tampon tax’ in Cal Anderson

(Image: Period, Inc.)

Climate strikes. Trans Pride. The Womxn’s March. And, Saturday, a rally against sales tax on menstruation products.

Cal Anderson frequently provides a staging ground for protests and demonstrations for some of the biggest issues we face. This weekend will add another important cause to the park’s history of activism — the state’s National Period Day Rally will take place on Capitol Hill:

Washington National Period Day Rally

Organizers are calling on Washington lawmakers to kill the “tampon tax” and join the ranks of 15 states that have already moved to make pads and tampons more affordable. Continue reading

How $150K ‘Public Life Study’ could be start of creating a Capitol Hill pedestrian and bike-only superblock

It took two decades of community planning to guide the affordable housing and community space-rich “transit oriented development” set to open above Capitol Hill Station in 2020. Proponents hope a new community-driven plan will play out faster to grow the neighborhood’s Capitol Hill EcoDistrict and — ultimately — create a pedestrian-and cyclist-first “superblock” in the middle of the neighborhood.

The start of this new “Public Life” plan began this summer in Copenhagen and will, officials hope, take a small, $150,000 step forward this fall as the Seattle City Council puts its touches on the city’s next fiscal budget. The discussion will begin Friday in council chambers.

“It’s about focusing on the EcoDistrict to make it more pedestrian friendly and a model for sustainability,” citywide representative Lorena González tells CHS about her proposal to add funding for a “Public Life Study” of Capitol Hill and the longterm hopes for the plan to shape the neighborhood: Continue reading

Clean-up vs. outreach — A 2020 budget battle builds over team on frontlines of Seattle’s homelessness response

“A member of the Navigation Team checks to see if anyone is in this tent and is interested in a to-go bag of food and water provided by neighbors,” the city says of this image posted to seattle.gov. The Navigation Team is also the city’s answer to clearing illegal encampments. (Image: City of Seattle)

A Kshama Sawant budget proposal to defund the city’s crew assigned to clearing out homeless encampments has the mayor’s office firing back but the Seattle City Council still might move to cut back the team.

Sawant’s proposal discussed Thursday would move more than $8 million lined up for the homeless response Navigation Team to “redirect those funds for other homeless services.”

A competing proposal from West Seattle rep Lisa Herbold would attach quarterly performance measurements to the mayor’s funding of the program.

It is also possible additional proposals for cutting back — or growing — the Nav Team will emerge as the budget process plays out into November.

The city describes the Navigation Team as “a specially trained team comprised of outreach workers paired with Seattle Police Department (SPD) personnel.” Continue reading

Death of a Capitol Hill waffle shop

(Image: @ktomcreative)

The Capitol Hill food and drink midway is down a sideshow and now lacks in the bright yellow neon and waffle department.

The Hill expansion of Sweet Iron has shuttered leaving a small retail hole in the commercial space of one of the largest preservation incentive-boosted developments in Pike/Pine.

We haven’t heard back from ownership about the shutdown but the original downtown Sweet Iron from the Jeffrey family remains open. Continue reading

Sawant vs. Orion on police accountability: ‘Public safety problems are not because we don’t have enough police, it’s because of inequality’

It was a busy 24 hours for police accountability in Seattle.

On Tuesday, U.S. District Judge James Robart issued a ruling clarifying that the city still needs to correct issues in its police accountability system. These problems led Robart to rule earlier this year that the Seattle Police Department had fallen partly out of compliance with a 2012 federal consent decree mandating that the city address allegations of bias in policing and the use of excessive force.

Robart also ruled Tuesday that, in finding ways to mend flaws in the SPD’s internal investigations of officer misconduct, Seattle may consult outside advisers.

And on Wednesday, an internal SPD inquiry found that an officer acted reasonably when he shot and killed a man armed with a handgun after a traffic stop last year, a shooting that has drawn deep scrutiny.

So Wednesday’s night’s police accountability forum at Centilia Cultural Center in Beacon Hill with candidates from many of the Seattle City Council races, was timely to say the least. And this time, both Kshama Sawant and Egan Orion were there. Continue reading

City needs Emergency Preparedness volunteers for District 3

Seattle wants you to help prepare your neighbors for emergencies and natural disasters. The city’s Office of Emergency Management is putting out a call for volunteer Emergency Preparedness Public Educators in each of the city’s seven City Council districts:

Are you interested in helping your neighborhood and the Seattle community prepare for disasters? We are looking for community members within the seven Seattle Council Districts to serve as Emergency Preparedness Educators with the Seattle Office of Emergency Management (OEM). Our volunteer educators are trained to provide emergency preparedness education to Seattle’s diverse community through presentations, tabling events, neighborhood meetings, and special events. On any given day, our volunteers may give a presentation in a living room, an office building, at a community center, a condo building, an assisted living facility, or a neighborhood council. We are looking for flexible individuals who know their neighborhoods well and share our passion for educating the community about the importance of emergency and disaster preparedness. Join our growing team!

The city is looking for two volunteers in each district. Continue reading

Suika and Tamari Bar family grows to Broadway where dragon-themed Rondo set to rule the day

Makoto Kimoto, center

Opportunistic, fast, and thorough, Makoto Kimoto is once again preparing a new project that will carve his vision of Japanese bar culture out of a space left empty by a failed Capitol Hill-launched food+drink chain concept.

Even better, this sibling to E Pine’s Suika and Tamari Bar will bring a new daytime energy to the family. Continue reading

On the List | Volunteer Park Halloween Pet Parade, Boys in Trouble dance, Iceland invades Liberty

Spooky season is upon us, so get ready for some eerie events on Capitol Hill (and Hilloween, which is back this year). Lusio Lights festival in Volunteer Park also makes an October appearance, though the light art installations and party amidst the tropical and other plants are more festive than frightening.

Next Monday at Pettirosso, The Traveling Chef Josh Ploeg cooks up a 4-course meal that must scare some meat and egg-lovers to death: it’s completely vegan. Dishes include “The Vampire’s Garden” salad with beet and tomato “aspic” dome, red pickles, black mushrooms and greens, a “Broomstick, Moonstick, Wrapped in Gloom Thick” pastry-wrapped yellow squash with mushroom gravy, as well as “A Ghast, A Ghoul, A Grave So Cruel” dark chocolate almond cake.

For what to do in the meantime, check out the events below or take a look at the CHS calendar.

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 16: Perhaps you haven’t heard of Knife Knights yet, but maybe, just maybe, you’ve heard of a band called Shabazz Palaces? 1/2 of the group, Ishmael Butler, teams up with Shabazz Palaces’ engineer Erik Blood under the Knife Knight umbrella. The result is ambitiously and unpredictably experimental music they describe as “soul and shoegaze, hip-hop and lush noise, bass, and bedlam.” For their Earshot Jazz Festival performance, the duo will be joined by KEXP DJ Stas Thee Boss and alto-sax expansionist Darius Jones. Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute, 7.30 PM – 10 PM  Continue reading

Di$trict 3: Amazon pumps over $1M into Seattle elections — What it means for District 3

Sphere of influence (Image: Amazon)

Remember that time when we reported that independent spending from Political Action Committees had soared to unprecedented heights? That was a week ago.

Campaign finance has become even more, um, unprecedented this week with the announcement Tuesday that Amazon is pouring an additional $1.05 million into CASE, the political arm of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, right when ballots are sent to voters this week.

That brings the local corporation’s spending on this year’s local elections to $1.45 million, more than any other union or Political Action Committee.

With $241,257 already spent on his behalf by CASE (mostly on mail and canvassing), D3 candidate Egan Orion is its largest beneficiary.

To give you a sense of the magnitude of this week’s contribution: Amazon’s total contribution to the PAC now adds up to more than the combined $1.27 million City Council candidates opposed by the PAC have raised. That group includes incumbent Kshama Sawant in D3, who has raised the most of any council candidate — $387,730.

“The money CASE has raised is from local companies who care about the future of this city,” Markham McIntyre, executive director of CASE, said in a statement. “The status quo isn’t working: we have a dysfunctional, toxic environment at City Council, and employers, including our city’s largest private employer, want a return to good government.”

The contribution brings CASE’s total spending power for this election up to $2.68 million, of which it has spent $1.3 million.

In a statement, Orion called the influx of PAC money in city politics this year “completely out of scale with the grassroots campaign myself and many others are trying to run and is proving to be a distraction from the real issues.”  Continue reading

Sawant $12M Tiny House Village proposal: Public hearing Thursday night

Rev. Lawrence R. Willis, True Vine of Holiness Missionary Baptist Church at Tuesday’s gathering at True Hope Village (Image: @jonathan4212)

A Kshama Sawant led Seattle City Council committee will hold a public hearing Thursday night on the District 3 representative’s legislation to expand funding for Tiny House Villages and block relocation of existing villages.

The proposal would move $12 million to expand the villages at 20 locations across the city and scuttle plans to remove two existing villages in Georgetown and Northlake. But the legislation faced opposition over possible State Environmental Policy Act appeals before it was even introduced. The Hearing Examiner case to unwind the legal issues is still underway with a hearing scheduled for December — well after the upcoming General Election.

Sawant’s proposal would forge a path for the village expansion by exempting religious organizations from permitting requirements for encampments on property owned or controlled by them. Continue reading