Tonight, Tuesday, May 5, the Ravenna Bryant Community Association will hold their spring community meeting. The meeting is being held at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Avenue NE) from 7-9 PM.
These expanded-from-their-usual-board-meeting events tend to feature more widely-relevant speakers and a round of board member elections, and that’s just what’s on the agenda for tonight (from the RBCA website):
Seattle Police Assistant Chief Steve Wilske
Commander of Patrol Operations
Capt. Dick Reed & Lt. George Bray
Seattle Police Department’s 9-1-1 Call Center
Election of 2015-16 RBCA Board Members
We’ll be there, providing live coverage below.
UPDATE (7:11 PM): Agenda and nominees for the 2015-2016 board:
Tony was asked about “that slumlord.” Tells is that enforcement is happening, more homes are being boarded up, demolition is coming.
As for the proposed Sisley property parks, the Council has dropped one of the two properties they were going to request be taken from Sisley, and the proposal is still sitting on committee, not being voted on anytime soon.
(If you’re wondering which of your current District 4 candidates are here, I already mentioned Tony Provine, but Rob Johnson is also here. Both live in the association boundaries as well.)
Full slate of board members has been voted on and approved, so that list on the second half of the agenda (graphic above) is your new Ravenna Bryant Community Association board.
I asked how the plans for the new building were coming along. O’Donnell said he’s seen some plans for the new North Precinct (to be located at NE 130th Street and Aurora Avenue NE). Construction to begin in late 2016.
North Precinct Captain Sean O’Donnell up next. Grew up in Sand Point area, has been captain at N. Precinct for three whole weeks.
Q: How does the school lockdown communication chain work?
A: Up to school to get info to parents at this time.
Gets complaints about 911 call takers sounding rude. Asks that callers PLEASE let the 911 person control the call and ask their questions. They are trained to ask certain questions for certain reasons.
Q: (from one of the teens) I can find my mom’s phone with an app. Why can’t police find my phone?
A: Our technology is not that good. Also, people don’t want the police to know where they are all the time. And the phone companies don’t want to release that information either (generally).
Landline phones are great for 911! You still need to give the address where you’re at when you call, but they can also find you another way.
If you call 911 from your cell phone, 911 does not know where you are. Call from a cell phone, you *have to* be able to report where you are.
Calls are ranked into four different priorities (1-4). 4 is noise complaints. (will fill in the rest later — he talked too fast.)
Wait times can be longer for lower priority issues (car prowls), and officers can be pulled from lower priority calls to higher ones. Officers are dispatched within geographic areas.
When to call 911. Not when you see illegally parked cars. YES when people with masks have robbed you. (He had examples of both.)
Call when you believe police need to give *expedited* attention. In progress stuff. If lives are in danger and people are getting hurt. HOWEVER, if it is a medical problem, say that FIRST, and your call will be transferred to fire department staff. 911 staff much better at screening out police stuff than the fire folks.
Nonemergency calls are answered after 911 calls.
You are talking to civilians when you call 911.
Other cities around Seattle contract with private companies for this service.
Moving on now to the 911 call center folks. Rob Montague speaking. Is a supervisor.
His center only covers Seattle. Separate from Shoreline and King County Sheriff’s Office. 911 center is part of SPD but staffed by civilians.
Q: Someone breaks into my car, takes nothing, but it looks like they’ve spent the night. Do I need to report this?
W: YES. We’re looking at stats on crimes every week now. We will want to know if there are upticks in certain crimes so we can allocate more resources in affected areas.
Q: (Teenagers!) Noticed people running red lights on Sand Point Way (near City Peoples, near Magnuson Park), has seen people nearly get it. Second youth asking how many officers are working in the area.
W: Staffing changes throughout the day, and for different shifts. More during the night, fewer during the day. 8 patrol officers on average for the area the second girl was talking about (SPW area).
Other units are also available, and can be brought in as needed (SWAT, for instance).
Q: How is the 9 1/2 blocks work downtown working? Can we bring that to the U-District?
W: Worked downtown 19 years, is very familiar to the challenges. Work so far has made a difference, they’re hearing from downtown businesses. Work now is how to maintain, and get folks into social services that they need. Tweaks need to happen, and conversations about bringing this concept to the U-District have already started.
Comment: I watched you guys on the TV last Friday, and you did a heck of a job. (applause)
W: Speaking about rallies earlier in the day, how many people, no problems. Anti-capitalist rally did not go as well (force and arrests). Another couple events the next day, no problems.
Q: As areas get more dense, does that present issues with crime, policing…thinking of the U-District in particular.
W: Recent experience in SW Seattle has him thinking about response times in regards to increased density. 911 response time is studied and improved.
Q: Student at Eckstein. Trying to cross at 70th and 30th in the mornings. Parents and other drivers not stopping. (Area behind the school.)
W: Will look at getting some motorcycle officers to tuck in there during morning school hours.
Roosevelt parent: Fast cars around 8 am on residential streets on 16th near 68th and 70th.
Q: Bikers don’t slow down at Blakeley and the BGT, don’t stop. Even with recent improvements. (This is not a question, is it?)
Jorgen: Crossing 65th on foot and cars don’t stop (especially during rush hour). Can we get enforcement on this?
Wilske: Will get some officers to check out that issue at those times.
Speaking to the recent hiring of Greg Russell (from Amazon). Will work to make use of technology in the department more efficiently. Also moving information out to the public more efficiently.
Communicating clearly internally another big focus. Speaking to issues (“in the newspaper”) and getting the word out about the good work off officers.
Staffing (not enough) is an issue. Outside consultant hired to look at needs for reports to City Council and taxpayers to ask for more $$ for staffing.
Assistant Chief Wilske is speaking first. In the department for 30 years. Speaking to the state of the Seattle Police Department.
Flipside of current challenges means opportunities. Building public trust is the number one priority. Another focus is communication with the public. Answering questions as quickly and as accurately as possible.
Refresh this page for the meeting agenda and the proposed 2015-2016 board members (huge graphic until I get home and fix it).
Tony Provine starting things off. Just-recently-former president of the association, not running for the Seattle City Council District 4 spot. Talking over the agenda and introducing the current board.
Here! On the free wifis! Huzzah! Life is good.
Nearly to the meeting now…