Press conference regarding Sisley property fines (LIVE COVERAGE, UPDATES)

The Roosevelt Neighborhood Association shared some intriguing news this morning, regarding the approximately $3 million in fines owed to the city by a certain well-known local landlord.

The city attorney’s office is holding a press conference on Friday, March 13, on the northwest corner of NE 65th Street and 14th Avenue NE to provide details on how “the City is moving forward decisively in dealing with the $3 million-plus legal judgment owed by the Sisleys.”

You can read the whole press release here.

Once we secure arrangements for our youngest intern, we plan on attending the event and providing live coverage below.

UPDATE (Friday, March 13): This is the ordinance the mayor will transmit to the city council next week regarding the seizure of some of the Sisleys’ properties to create a park.  Click on any image to see the full size version.


UPDATE (Friday, March 13, 1:40 PM): In addition to the above ordinance being presented to the City Council next week, the mayor’s office put out a press release regarding the plans to seize two properties belonging to Hugh Sisley. Here are the main points of the plan (from the press release):

Should the judgments, interest and penalties related to the violations remain unpaid, the city will seek to have the properties seized by the King County Sheriff and sold at auction. Murray intends to transmit an ordinance to the City Council next week that allows the city to purchase the two properties at 1322 and 1318 NE 65th St.

The city intends to bid on the properties at auction, using a credit bid based on the $3.3 million owed the city by the Sisleys, in order to build a new city park for the neighborhood.

If the supplemental proceedings that allows the city to collect more than $2 million in penalties have not concluded prior to the auction, the city will use a $1 King County Conservation Futures grant, in addition to credit based on the judgments and interest owed the city.

Roosevelt's Jim O'Halloran (center) speaks with Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes (left) and City Councilmember Jean Godden (right) before the press conference.

Roosevelt’s Jim O’Halloran (center) speaks with Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes (left) and City Councilmember Jean Godden (right) before the press conference.

While those residents gathered at the press conference were pleased with the actions the city plans to take, many were dismayed that none of them (as of yet) involved tearing down any dilapidated buildings. The parcels the city is zeroing in on for this first seizure have both been vacant for years.

Holmes Sisley press conference1

View from 14th Avenue NE/NE 66th Street south to NE 65th Street.

Once the date of the City Council meeting is known, we will post that information here.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:26 AM

Going to wander around more now, and take pictures. More later on this page, including the text of the ordinance itself.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:24 AM

DPD: We’re working on taking down three nearby boarded up homes, but this is a very slow process. Sisleys won’t necessarily get the demolition permits to do the work.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:21 AM

Holmes: Parcels can go up for auction, but city gets first shot (eminent domain).

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:18 AM

Essex Porter: Why is this a park, not affordable housing?

Murray: You have to have the amenities that go with density. Open space. No either or. (Applause for this.)

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:16 AM

Good group of neighbors here. Some students from RHS in attendance as well.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:16 AM

What about clearing other properties?

Judgement encumbering those 48 properties. There will be careful order to taking them, if the lack of payment continues.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:14 AM

Unified city action, unified city effort.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:14 AM

Does this settle the judgment with the Sisleys?

Nooooo. This is a piece, a part of the process.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:13 AM

Questions now.

48 parcels owned by the Sisleys are considered as “substandard.”

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:10 AM

CM Burgess and Godden: More thank yous to neighborhood. Godden looking forward to creating this new gathering space with the community (she is chair of Parks Committee currently).

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:07 AM

Mayor now introducing his husband, who works in the Parks Department. Lots of thank yous to those who make this possible. Sorry it took so long to make these lemons into lemonade.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:05 AM

Next week the ordinance to acquired this land will be presented to the Council.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:04 AM

Mayor Murray: Government worked collaboratively to make this happen. City tried to work with Sisleys for decades. They refused to act, so we are.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:02 AM

City Attorney office worked with Parks, Mayor’s Office, Council to find the funds to make this acquisition of land possible.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:01 AM

2 years ago, office started working on the Sisley problem. Full payments, no more piecemeal, partial business.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 201510:00 AM

$3.4 million owed. $800 added per day. Ordinance being introduced to take land behind him (3 parcels) and transfer it to the Parks Department.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 20159:58 AM

Pete Holmes starting. “I want to first thank all of you for your patience.” Laughs from crowd.

Rebecca Nelson March 13, 20159:56 AM

On scene, AND on line now,!!


  1. Allan Waite says:

    I am hoping for good news. The city and our community have been bullied by this man’s intransigence for far too long. I was hoping there was going to be some changes when I saw all of the new chain link fencing go up.

  2. Thanks for the live coverage!

  3. That would be ’eminent’ domain…

  4. Kristen L says:

    Thank you very much for the live coverage for those of us neighbors who couldn’t attend. Can you clarify which parcel they are considering for a park?

    • The parcels they are planning to take are the currently vacant lots along 14th, between 65th and the high school. Unfortunately, it will likely still be a while before we see anything torn down.

  5. Richard Fuhr says:

    More material for the book and for the screenplay: “The Seattle Process”

  6. Richard Fuhr says:

    In the blog entry you wrote “Friday, March 14” — of course you meant “Friday, March 13”

  7. Thanks for the blow by blow!

  8. The Weekly has a different take on the PC – the mayor declares victory in the middle of the war.

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