City encourages residents to prepare for weekend weather

With high-winds and rain predicted for Seattle and much of the Pacific Northwest this weekend, it is recommended that residents take extra precautions at home and when out. Residents should defer traveling during the storm, avoid and report downed power lines and trees, and be cautious near areas experiencing flooding.

Latest modeling shows a chance for heavy winds to arrive in the Seattle area as early as 5 PM on Saturday, October 15 and lasting throughout the evening. For the most current weather updates please visit the National Weather Service (NWS) Forecast Office, Impact Briefing for Seattle. For up to date information impacting the City of Seattle please visit or

Storm Safety Information
• Please call 911 to report downed lines, do not touch or attempt to remove lines that have fallen during the storm.

• If you lose power at home, please call (206) 684-3000 to report the outage or call the Power Outage Hotline at (206) 684-7400 to hear a recorded message with power restoration updates.

• Because of the timing of tomorrow’s storm, there may be challenges with travel throughout the city tomorrow evening and Sunday morning.

• For individuals using life-sustaining and medical equipment, please contact and register with your utility company. For more information call (206) 684-3020.

• Remember to treat intersections that are impacted by power outages as four-way stops.

• Check the Metro and Sound Transit websites for any impacts to your transit routes.

• Maintain gutters, downspouts, rain barrels, private culverts by keeping them clean, flowing and directed away from properties and hillsides.

• Keep storm drains free of leaves and other debris to prevent streets from flooding. Be sure to stay out of the road when raking.

• All Seattle Parks and Recreation grass athletic fields, including West Seattle Stadium, will be closed through the weekend. Most importantly, please remember to safe and use extreme caution outdoors. Parks officials encourage residents to avoid Seattle parks entirely this weekend due to the high-winds.

• Seattle Parks has cancelled programs and activities in parks across the system. For the most up-to-date information please visit

• Generally, we want to remind you that if you do lose power, keep grills, camping stoves and generators outside. Fuel burning appliances are sources of carbon monoxide, a dangerous and poisonous gas.

• Have an emergency preparedness kit ready to help you get through until power is restored

• Storms can create a storm surge impacting high-tide. For information pertaining to tides visit NOAA.

• A temporary, emergency shelter for people experiencing homelessness will be open at the Seattle Center Fisher Pavilion – near 2nd & Thomas, south of Key Arena. The co-ed adult shelter will open on Saturday and Sunday from 7 PM to 7AM. This shelter can accommodate 100 people.

• King County Shelter for adult males has expanded capacity to serve 50 additional men Friday through Tuesday, 10/14 – 10/18. The King County Shelter is located at the King County Administration Building at 500 4th Avenue in Seattle. The shelter opens at 7 PM.

• The City Hall Co-ed shelter at 600 4th Ave in Seattle will expand capacity Friday through Tuesday 10/14 – 10/18 with an emphasis on accommodating women seeking shelter. The shelter is open from 7PM to 6AM.

• Sign up and use AlertSeattle at for up-to-date information from the City of Seattle

• The City will have additional staff and crews available throughout the evening and weekend to respond to emergencies as they arise. The Seattle Emergency Operations Center and Joint Information Center will be activated throughout the weekend.

Additional preparedness information can be found at: Take Winter by Storm – or What to do to make it through –

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Mayor: New community engagement plan will bring more diverse neighborhood voices before the City

Mayor Ed Murray today signed an executive order to bring greater equity to the City’s outdated system for promoting public engagement among residents of Seattle’s neighborhoods.

“Our city has changed dramatically since our District Councils system was created three decades ago, and we have seen them over time become less and less representative not only of their neighborhoods but of Seattle itself,” said Murray. “For immigrants and refugees, low-income residents, communities of color, renters, single parents, youth, people experiencing homelessness, LGBTQ, and more, the system today has become a barrier for many to become involved in the City’s decision-making process. Now is the time to recreate our outreach and engagement process to become more accessible and inclusive, and to account for the ways that people communicate and connect in the 21st century.”

The District Council system, established in 1987, includes thirteen area-based councils whose membership includes local residents representing their neighborhood’s community council, business associations, and nonprofit organizations. In 2009, the City Auditor issued a strongly-worded report advocating for a reset of the District Council system, due in part to the low-level of diverse representation on the district councils.

In 2013, a demographic snapshot of District Council attendees showed that they tend to be 40 years of age or older, Caucasian, with the vast majority owning their homes. At least six District Councils had no reported people of color attending, and only three District Councils reported any African American attendees.

Murray’s executive order directs City departments to begin developing robust community engagement plans, and takes steps toward dissolving the City’s ties to each of the thirteen district councils. The district councils may still exist, but Department of Neighborhoods’ resources that previously supported the district councils will be redirect to support all City departments in these efforts. Throughout the month of August, the Department of Neighborhoods will conduct civic engagement focus groups. By September 26, the department will also draft legislation for a new citywide community engagement framework and strategic plan, including a new Seattle Community Involvement Commission to be established by January 2017. The Department of Neighborhoods and Seattle IT are also directed to submit a digital engagement plan by March 1, 2017 to broaden public accessibility.

“How we reach out to residents to bring them into the governing process reflects the City’s fundamental commitment to equity and to democracy,” said Murray. “We’re constantly looking to bring down barriers, to open up more opportunities, and to reflect the face of our diverse and growing city. I know that community members have committed untold hours serving on the district councils over the years: this change is about distributing opportunity for community input, not taking it away.”

An FAQ on today’s announcement can be found here.



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Meet some of the Neighborhood Summit attendees!

We asked participants of Mayor Murray’s Neighborhood Summit what brought them to the event, what they got out of it, and what we can do better next time. Here’s what they had to say:

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Full video of the Seattle Neighborhood Summit

Welcome from Mayor Murray:

How We Engage — Seattle Civic Health Index Report by Diane Douglas, Executive Director of CityClub:

How We Organize — Resolution #27709 by Jim Street, Former Seattle City Councilmember:

Public Input — The Search for a New Transportation Director:

How We Communicate — A Demonstration of Consider.It, a new online engagement technology

Closing Remarks from Mayor Murray:

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Mayor Murray: ‘Greater respect’ means a ‘greater community.’

Mayor Murray at the Seattle Neighborhood Summit

Updated 4:09 p.m.

On Saturday, Mayor Murray hosted the Seattle Neighborhood Summit at Seattle Center’s Exhibition Hall where hundreds of Seattle residents participated in community engagement sessions, talked with City department representatives, and learned from one another during peer networking sessions.

The Mayor saw this summit as a way to work on building a healthier relationship between City government and Seattle neighborhoods. “This Summit is meant to be the beginning of a conversation and resetting of tone,” he said. “The idea of community is working together. That’s what we have to remember as we move forward. That’s what we have to renew.”

The Mayor asked the crowd to, no matter what, stay engaged. He also encouraged everyone in the room to rethink the way they approach controversial, and sometimes frustrating, policy conversations. “You might think that microhousing is the worst idea in the world, but the important thing is that we respect each other, listen to each other, and try and solve our differences.”

The event included a presentation from Diane Douglas of CityClub on Seattle’s “Civic Health,” a look back at how the City’s relationship with neighborhoods was originally structured by former City Councilmember Jim Street, a public comment period about what attendees were looking for in the next Department of Transportation Director, and a technology demo of a new online civic engagement tool called Consider.It.

Seattle Channel has full video of the day’s events, you can view lots of photos on our Flickr page and take a look back at the live event blog to get a good sense of the day.

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Seattle Neighborhood Summit live blog!

We have a dedicated page here with a live stream of the event, a curated Twitter conversation, and a live blog, but we’ll keep you updated here too!

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Agenda: Here’s what’s happening at Mayor Murray’s Neighborhood Summit this Saturday

Seattle Neighborhood SummitThe final agenda for this Saturday’s Neighborhood Summit is now available! The event will be held at Seattle Center’s Exhibition Hall which is located at Mercer Street and 3rd Avenue N., next to McCaw Hall. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Child care and light refreshments will be provided.

Learn more about the event or RSVP for free today!

Seattle Neighborhood Summit Agenda

9:00 am – 9:30 am

  • Doors Open
  • Sign in and Resource Fair
  • Meet Your Elected Officials: Mayor Murray and his team are available to speak informally with Summit participants.  The Mayor will address the attendees formally at 9:30 a.m.
  • Roundtable with City Departments: Connecting participants to City departments’ services and programs. Staff will share their inside view of how to work with departments. Over 20 departments will be present, and several will provide direct services in real time such as signing up for a library card, registering for a pet license, reporting a pothole, signing up for utility discount programs, and more.

9:30 am – 9:35 am

Welcome and opening remarks by Mayor Ed Murray

9:40 am

Session 1 (Theater)
How We Engage: Seattle Civic Health Index Report
Moderator Diane Douglas, Executive Director of CityClub

Highly attached residents are more likely to actively contribute to a community’s growth. This presentation touches upon, trust, technology, and enfranchising communities. What does Seattle do well and where we can improve? A Q&A will follow.

10:15 am- 10:45 am

Session 2 (Theater)
How We Organize: Resolution #27709
Moderator Jim Street, Former Seattle City Councilmember

In 1987, the city passed Resolution 27709 creating what we now know as the City Neighborhood Council and the District Council system. The District Council system is 27 years old. Learn the intent behind the resolution. A Q&A will follow.

10:50 am- 11:20 am

Session 3
Peer Networking
Moderators: Community Members

Connect with your neighbors. We are fortunate enough to be joined by some innovative Seattle residents who are doing amazing work, many of whom were noted by you in an online survey as valuable community resources. We couldn’t agree more. Listen to their stories and learn from their experience.

Resources for networking:

  • Cindi Barker: Community emergency communications hub.
  • Lee Harper: Engaging the community, connecting with neighbors over a project or an idea.
  • Melissa Jonas: Facebook: not just for puppy pictures. Using social media to connect communities.
  • Jonah Spangenthal-Lee: His outreach campaigns have received national and international media coverage. Learn how and why.
  • Austin Miller: How to submit a meeting request to the Mayor’s Office.
  • Lisa Rutzick: Walk through Design Review.
  • Cari Simson: How to improve neighborhood liveability and water quality through rain gardens.
  • Jessica Vets: How to build a thriving neighborhood business district, and the connection between residents, employees and business owners.

11:25 am- 11:55 am

Session 4
The Search for a New Transportation Director
Facilitator Susan Coskey, Director of Personnel at the City of Seattle

The City of Seattle is conducting a national search to find an experienced, well-respected, and accountable executive to effectively lead the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) The Mayor is committed to a transparent process, and is engaging the people of Seattle in a conversation about the qualities they would like to see in an SDOT Director which is why we are devoting a portion of the Seattle Neighborhood Summit to this very topic. A Q&A will follow.

12:00 pm- 12:20 pm

Session 5
How We Communicate
Presenter Travis Kriplean

Travis will do a demonstration of Consider.It, a social technology that lets hundreds of people deliberate an issue together online. A Q&A will follow.

12:20 pm – 12:30 pm

Closing Remarks

12:30 pm – 1:00 pm

Peer Networking

9:00 am – 12:30 pm Ongoing Activities

  • Roundtable with City Department: City services are delivered by city departments. Knowing which department does what is a critical first step to having an impact on service delivery to your neighborhood. This workshop will bring staff from city departments to share their inside view of how to get results.
  • Curbside Consulting: Staffed tables available for one on one tutorials, including how to navigate the City’s website. Have questions? Get answers!
  • Exhibits include:
    • Information on the Comprehensive Plan
    • Parks and Recreation’s Imagination Play Station
    • Block image printmaking of your neighborhood with the guidance of a teaching artist
    • Seattle Fire Department’s engine and ladder trucks
    • Photo booth.
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Mayor Murray talks police reforms, Neighborhood Summit and more with Angela King

Mayor Murray and Angela King taping CityStream

Mayor Murray was interviewed this week for Seattle Channel’s Emmy-winning feature magazine show CityStream by host Angela King. The Mayor discussed his administration’s priorities, the upcoming Neighborhood Summit, and what he’s looking forward to the most in the next four years.

Listing police reform as his top priority, the Mayor also highlighted his goal of working more closely with neighborhood groups.

“We’re going to begin with a Neighborhood Summit in April. We’re going to invite people who live in the city to help us develop the methods they can be more involved in in making decisions about the character in their neighborhoods,” Mayor Murray said. “I think we’ve grown distant in City Hall from the decision making in neighborhoods.”

The Mayor also shared what was most surprising about his first few weeks in office (everyone in Seattle knows who their Mayor is and they are eager to chat!) and the aspect he enjoys most.

“The thing I look forward to is that contact with people, that chance to get out in different communities and work on very different issues. It’s the part that I find most exciting,” the Mayor said. “I just love to get out there, get in a crowd and mix it up. I realize it’s not always going to be positive, but it’s very exciting.”

You can see the show in its entirety here, which also features segments on the Office of Civil Rights’ Racial Equity program, an update on the Families and Ed Levy program, and a story about safety with City Light. The Mayor’s segment begins at the 7:58 mark.

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