December 14, 2013 in Washington Voices

Spokane County Library District plans bond for renovation, construction

Valerie Putnam

(Full-size photo)

Mork ends run as mayor

This week marked the final City Council meeting for Millwood Mayor Dan Mork.

Before presiding over his last meeting, Mork swore in his replacement, Councilman Kevin Freeman. After taking his oath, Freeman asked for a round of applause for Mork’s contribution to the city.

“I’ve loved working with every one of you,” said Mork, who’s served the city in various capacities for 32 years. “There’s not too many things you do for this long and still enjoy it. … It’s been fun.”

Mork also swore in Councilman Richard Shoen for his sixth term.

“You got a great new council and mayor coming in this year,” Mork said following the ceremony.

Newcomer Dan Sander, who was elected to fill Freeman’s position, will be sworn in during the January meeting.

Next meeting

The next regular City Council meeting is at 7 p.m. Jan. 14 at Millwood City Hall, 9103 E. Frederick Ave. For more information, call (509) 924-0960.

Nancy Ledeboer outlined the Spokane County Library District’s facility plans during the Millwood City Council meeting Tuesday.

“We thought we really needed to look at what is our greatest need,” Ledeboer said. “And how we can address it in the most cost-efficient and sustainable manner.”

The library district will ask voters for $22 million to build and renovate branches in the Valley.

On Tuesday, Spokane County commissioners voted to place the bond on the April 22 ballot.

The district plans to build a new library on Sprague Avenue, next to the expanded Balfour Park. The current Valley branch, which was built in 1955, would become administration offices.

The Argonne branch would be renovated after administrative offices move out of that building, allowing public library space to expand from 9,600 square feet to about 15,000 square feet.

The district also plans to build a neighborhood branch at Sprague and Conklin Road.

In other city news, the council adopted an ordinance regulating marijuana use in the city and rescinding a six-month moratorium established in August.

The ordinance outlines amendments made to the Millwood Municipal Code regarding zoning and land use. It also clarifies business licensing regulations in the city.

The state Liquor Control Board has made it clear that Initiative 502 does not supersede local regulations, City Attorney Brian Werst said. “A city still retains jurisdictions to enforce its local rules.”

Before voting, the council took public testimony. One question was raised regarding growing marijuana in the city. Planner Tom Richardson said it could be grown in the city’s designated industrial zone.

Following the public hearing, the council unanimously approved the ordinance.

The council also approved the 2014 budget, which for the first time shows an excess in all funds.

“All the years I’ve been on the council in this position,” outgoing Mayor Dan Mork said, “this is the cleanest, most solid budget we’ve had.”

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