Marysville officials discussed issues such as crime and transportation, and gave updates on some of the city’s recreation projects at Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring’s most recent Coffee Klatch.
The informal meeting for the community was held on Nov. 14.
The Coffee Klatches are held every few weeks in the city for residents to attend and ask questions of public officials.
Problems with individuals with addiction issues was one of the big topics.
Jeff Goldman, operations commander with the Marysville Police Department, encouraged locals to report criminal activity they see, because even if police arrive too late to deal with the issue it allows them to track where it is happening.
“The key point from the police standpoint is that we track everything and have maps that are updated by the minute.” he said, “We can see where the hot spots are.”
If you are not comfortable handling drug needles, the police are available to help as well.
“We’ll come pick that up and dispose of it for you,” said Goldman. “Some people are very comfortable with that, some are not."
Nehring said that crime is something that city officials discuss a lot and that the crime rates have been dropping in the city.
“I know that if you’re the victim of a crime it doesn’t matter to you that crime rates are going down citywide,” he said.
The city is taking steps to get to the heart of the problem, as well, said Nehring, which he sees as those with addiction problems.
“We feel morally and for the sake of the community that we have to provide an alternative path,” said Nehring.
The city has partnered with Snohomish County in sending out an embedded social worker to help those who want to seek treatment have an easier time of receiving it.
Nehring said that those with addiction problems go in and out of local jails, costing the taxpayers a lot of money, and the best outcome would be to support treatment paths.
“We have this exhausting rotating circle. So the true way to get out of this is to get these people into a treatment center and off the streets,” he said.
Some residents were concerned about Mother Nature’s Window, a wooded property the city intends to turn into a park but is still mostly forest.
Parks, Culture and Recreation Department Director Jim Ballew said that fencing is part of the future plan for the land.
“We think that would help define the boundaries and the edges,” he said.
“Right now we have about a $1.4 million budgeted to make improvements based on our master plan,” and it would cost $185,000 to fence the area, he said.
Ballew said that the city has one federal and one state grant request in for matching funds to help develop the park.
The Ebey Waterfront area may also be receiving some more recreation options in the future.
“Our waterfront area is something that has been a long-term goal,” he said.
The last few years have been about cleaning the chemicals left from the former uses of the land.
“Environmentally we got grants to clean the contaminants and that took several years, but a good chunk of that work is done,” said Nehring.
In terms of transportation Nehring said that an overpass over the train tracks on 88th Street or Fourth Street remains unlikely, as that would wipe out access to State Avenue.
Instead, the most likely target is Grove Street.
The city received funding to get a project design started.
“The council and I took that down to Olympia. We pick away at these things and it usually takes a few year,” said Nehring.
Even more than traffic concerns, the overpass should help with emergency response, said Nehring.
“If you have a problem on the other side, like a heart attack, you can’t get over there right now,” he said. “It’s a big public safety issue for us."