CIVICS | Plus, MLK Jr. Day closures and ways to volunteer
It’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which means it’s a day to remember Dr. King and also a day of service. Find service opportunities at Volunteer Spokane. There will also be a MLK Day Unity Rally and March in downtown on Monday. The rally and march starts at the Spokane Convention Center at 10 a.m.
MLK Jr. Day also means city and county closures.
Closures: Spokane City Hall, Spokane public libraries, the Spokane County Courthouse (including Municipal, District and Superior Courts), Veterans Services, Community Services, Parks and Recreation and SCRAPS will be closed to observe the holiday.
The City Council will also not be meeting.
Still open: The Sheriff’s Office and Spokane Valley and North County Transfer Stations and Spokane’s Waste-to-Energy facility will remain open. Garbage pickup and curbside recycling will still happen as usual. My Spokane 311 employees will also be available for phone or online customer service.
Bicycle Advisory Board
Bike parking: The BAB will be talking about updating the city’s bicycle parking code so it would require safe bicycle parking spaces based on the floor area of buildings. It also gives guidance on good bike space design. The code update is meant to encourage the use of bicycles in Spokane.
Snow plows: The board will also discuss how city snow plowing impacts bike lanes. Usually snow renders bike lanes unusable as snow plows tend to push all the snow to the sides of roads where bike lanes reside. The city recently got a “baby plow” to clear bike lanes.
Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 6 p.m.
Council Briefing Center, City Hall.
808 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201
To join virtually click here.
Board of County Commissioners
On the defense: In the consent agenda, the board of county commissioners is set to authorize covering the costs of the defense and possible punitive damages in a lawsuit against County Prosecutor Larry Haskell, Deputy Prosecutor Sharon Hedlund, ex-Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich and Detective Marc Melville. The resolution has the stipulation that if information comes to the Board’s attention indicating that any of the defendants in the litigation did not act in good faith or was performing duties outside the scope of their authority, the county can withdraw the support. This lawsuit comes on the heels of a nearly $20 million wrongful termination and defamation judgment against Knezovich and the county for the very public firing of an officer alleged to have used racial slurs, threatened violence against Black people and sexually harass a fellow law officer.
The case was filed in December 2021 by Joseph Riley, who spent two weeks in jail after the assault and death of a father of two. He didn’t commit the crime, but the officials arrested him and widely publicized his name. Read more from Colin Tiernan at the Spokesman here.
Public hearing: The commission is holding a public hearing on changing the composition of the county planning commission to follow the new makeup of the county commission. The new planning commission will be appointed by the county commissioners and include one planning commissioner per district plus one commissioner from outside of the Urban Growth Area and one from inside the UGA.
Tuesday, Jan. 17 at 2 p.m.
Public Works Building
1026 W Broadway, Spokane, WA
Commissioner’s Hearing Room, Lower Level
Bonus event on legislation
2023 Eastern Washington Legislative Conference: The Fig Tree newspaper and an interfaith group of organizations is hosting a conference on Saturday, January 21 focused on upcoming WA state legislative agenda items and how attendees can communicate with their representatives on their perspectives. The group includes Catholic Charities of Eastern Washington, Faith Action Network, Sisters of St Francis of Philadelphia, the United Methodist Inland District, NAACP Spokane Branch, Earth Ministries/Washington Interfaith Power and Light. The cost of the conference is $20 for online participants or $32 for in person attendees.
Registration required and more information here
Saturday, Jan. 21 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Spokane Valley United Methodist Church
115 N Raymond Rd. Spokane Valley, WA