Sequim city councilors approved the purchase of three new Ford Interceptors on April 10 for up to $180,000 to replace aging vehicles. One of the perks, officers say, is that the larger backseat makes it easier to move prisoners.

Sequim to replace police vehicles

By Matthew Nash

Olympic Peninsula News Group

SEQUIM — The Sequim Police Department continues to change out its fleet.

The department’s Ford Crown Victorias are needing increased maintenance because of age and usage, Sequim Police Chief Sheri Crain said, so city staff plan to purchase three new, fully-equipped 2017 Ford Interceptors through the state.

Sequim Police already own and operate seven of the Ford sport utility vehicles after beginning to replace the city’s Crown Victorias in 2014 when the model was discontinued.

The Sequim City Council unanimously approved the purchases for up to $180,000 from the Vehicle Replacement Fund at their regular meeting last Monday.

At least three older police vehicles will be sent to surplus sale and are available for viewing from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays at the Sequim City Shop, 169 W. Hemlock St.

Sealed bids are due by 3 p.m. this coming Friday to the Sequim city clerk at 152 W. Cedar St.

Crain said vehicles are on a 10-year rotation and are assessed for replacement each year. City staff purchased four vehicles in 2006 and five in 2007 that need to be replaced in the coming years, she said.

Prices have increased, she said. She estimates the cost will be about $34,000 per vehicle and about $20,000 for equipment installation such as extra lights and a secure prisoner area.

Two new Interceptors will go to patrol officers and one to a detective.

City council members postponed a public hearing on propane tank safety to 6 p.m. Monday, April 24, to flesh out more details on the ordinance prompted by earthquake preparation concerns.

One item in the proposal would mandate requiring shut-off valves for propane tanks at or above 120 gallons in new construction homes/businesses.

City staff plan to send out brochures on the ordinance in upcoming utility bills and through Clallam County Fire District 3.

Guy Cole remodel

Following a 2016 city budget recap April 10 by city staff revealing the city’s general fund revenues were up about 2 percent at about $139,000, Councilwoman Candace Pratt suggested some of the general funds go toward a remodel of the kitchen in the Guy Cole Convention Center in Carrie Blake Park.

City Manager Charlie Bush said he’d look into the idea and have a proposal for a later date.

City staff tentatively set a ribbon cutting for the convention center, following its remodel, for sometime in May.

The current remodel is budgeted for up to $436,500 through a grant with the Department of Commerce Direct Grant Program.

Facility rentals

Driven by the current remodel of Guy Cole Convention Center in Carrie Blake Park, council members unanimously approved updates to the city’s 2015 rental policy.

Some of the changes include:

• Allowing commercial, fraternal, partisan political and religious organizations to rent city facilities along with the picnic shelter.

• Banning animals, except service animals, from rentals.

• Recurring events are no longer subject to contract with the city and can be scheduled through the application process.

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Matthew Nash is a reporter with the Olympic Peninsula News Group, which is composed of Sound Publishing newspapers Peninsula Daily News, Sequim Gazette and Forks Forum. Reach him at [email protected].

Sequim City street crews plan to use Rodda Paint to stripe roadways in hopes they’ll have to paint roadways like North Seventh Avenue less often. Sequim city councilors unanimously approved a $9,100 agreement to partner with Rodda to buy road paint. Sequim Gazette photos by Matthew Nash

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