State Autonomous Vehicle Work Group meets to consider initial recommendations to Legislature
- Written by Reema Griffith, WSTC Executive Director
OLYMPIA – With new and evolving technology advances in vehicle operations, the Washington State Legislature enacted a law in 2018 creating the Autonomous Vehicle Work Group. The body is convened by the Washington State Transportation Commission and is required to make recommendations on possible laws and regulations that will address the operation of autonomous vehicles on public roadways in the state.
The work group will meet from 12 – 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 24, in the Nisqually Board Room at the Department of Transportation Headquarters Building, 310 Maple Park Ave SE, Olympia. The meeting is open to the public.
The work group held its first meeting in June and established five subcommittees charged with assessing regulatory and legal needs for autonomous vehicle deployment on roadways. The subcommittees bring together public and private sector interests to collaborate on assessing potential implications and effects of autonomous vehicles across five topical areas:
- Vehicle and driver licensing/ rules of the road
- Safety/ enforcement
- Infrastructure and systems
- Liability/ insurance
- System technology and data security
The work group will receive status reports and recommendations from the five subcommittees at their Oct. 24 meeting. The work group will then forward the recommendations on to the commission for consideration during its Dec. 11 and 12 meeting in Olympia. The work group will also provide the commission with a proposed work plan for the next two years (July 2019 – June 2021) which will outline the major efforts they will undertake in their ongoing review and assessment of autonomous vehicle deployment in Washington state.
The commission will submit a report of findings and initial recommendations, along with the proposed two-year work plan, to the Legislature in January 2019.
For more information on the work group, visit: wstc.wa.gov/Meetings/AVAgenda/AutonomousVehicleWorkGroup.html
For more information on the Transportation Commission, visit: wstc.wa.gov/
State Transportation Commission adopts SR 99 tunnel toll rates
- Written by Reema Griffith, WSTC executive director
OLYMPIA – The Washington State Transportation Commission today voted to approve toll rates for the State Route 99 tunnel under downtown Seattle. Drivers will not be charged tolls when the tunnel first opens in early 2019, and an exact date to begin tolling has not yet been determined.
The adopted toll rates will range from $1 to $2.25 for drivers with a Good To Go! pass, depending on time of day. Drivers without a Good To Go! account will pay an extra $2 per toll. Toll rates will also be higher for vehicles with more than two axles.
On weekdays, tolls will be $1.50 during the morning peak commute (7 a.m. to 9 a.m.), $2.25 during the evening peak commute (3 p.m. to 6 p.m.), and $1.25 during non-peak hours between 6 a.m. and 11 p.m. Overnight (11 p.m. to 6 a.m.) and weekend tolls will be $1.00. Toll rates will increase by 3 percent every three years beginning in July 2022, subject to annual review by the Transportation Commission.
The Transportation Commission has previously determined that there will be consistent exemptions on all toll facilities for public transit, emergency responders, highway maintenance vehicles, school buses and qualified private buses, which serve the public or commuters.
State law requires that SR 99 tunnel tolls be used to repay $200 million borrowed to build the tunnel as well as related debt service costs, and ongoing operations, maintenance, and safety costs.
The Transportation Commission engaged in a five-month long public input process before finalizing toll rates. The commission considered over 1,900 written public comments during this time, and held three public meetings in Seattle during June 2018.
Mail theft in Sunnyslope area
- Written by Chief Jason Reinfeld, CCSO
Sheriff Brian Burnett reports on October 15th, 2018 the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office took several complaints of mail theft. This included a report from a postal carrier who found mail littering the roadway along the their route. This took place in the Sunnyslope area including Lower Sunnyslope Road, Easy Street, Sunset, Knowles Road, American Fruit Road, Viewmont, and Lovell Road.
Deputies responded and assisted in gathering mail from the roadway. They have been assisting in returning mail to residents in the area. This will continue into tomorrow as well. At this point there is no suspect information.
The Sheriff’s office is asking the public for assistance in locating the suspect(s). If you believe you have information to include surveillance video of the thefts, please contact the Sheriff’s Office tip-line at 509-667-6845. You can also submit a tip at the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office website: www.co.chelan.wa.us/sheriff/forms/submit-a-tip.
This is the time of year where valuable items are often sent through the mail. It is important to protect yourself from mail theft for outgoing and incoming mail. The US Postal Inspector recommends delivering valuable items through the slot at the post office or by handing it to the postal carrier. For incoming mail, If you don’t receive an expected check or credit card, contact the issuing agency immediately.
There are many other suggestions for safeguarding your mail available at the US Postal Service Inspection website: https://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/
NOTE: If you are charged with mail theft, you could face up to five years in federal prison and fines of up to $250,000.
Two arrested in connection with recent vehicle prowls
- Written by Captain Jim West, Operations Bureau Commander, Wenatchee Police Department
On 10/11/18 Wenatchee Police Officers responded to a suspicious call at the Holiday Lodge located in the 700 block of N. Wenatchee Ave. The caller reported that two males were acting suspicious around the property for several hours. Both suspects left the property before officers arrived.
The caller discovered that it appeared a couple of the hotel rooms had been entered and possibly a blanket was missing. The Holiday Lodge requested that officers contact the suspects and advise them to not return to their property.
Wenatchee Police Officers eventually located the two suspects identified as Makaella A. Leonardo, a 23 year old female from Visalia, CA and Patrick J. Malone, a 31 year old male from Wenatchee.
During this contact officers noticed that the suspects had several items under some shrubs and Malone had a silver Apple Mac laptop in his possession. At this time both suspects were advised not to return to the Holiday Lodge.
After the officers left they spoke about the contact they had with Leonardo and Malone. Another officer advised that he took a vehicle prowl report on 10/10/18 where a silver Apple Mac was stolen. Officers returned to the area where Leonardo and Malone were contacted but they had left. Officers located items in the same shrubs which included items linked to several vehicle prowls and thefts that have been occurring the past several weeks.
Officers began checking pawn shops to see if the laptop had been pawned. At Pawn Fathers, located in the 500 block N. Wenatchee Avenue, employees stated a couple matching the description of Leonardo and Malone came in on 10/10/18 with two bikes to pawn. Officers looked at the bikes and they recognized one of them as recently reported stolen. Officers reviewed video footage at Pawn Fathers and identified Leonardo and Malone as the suspects who brought in the stolen bike. At the time the suspects brought in the bikes, Leonardo used identification that had been stolen during a vehicle prowl in Carson, WA.
A short time later officers located Leonardo and Malone walking along N. Wenatchee Ave. Both suspects were arrested without incident and were booked into Chelan County regional Jail for Trafficking Stolen Property, Possession of Stolen Property, Identity Theft, and Possession of Methamphetamine.
The investigation into the vehicle prowls and theft is ongoing and officers have collected items of evidence from the suspects relating to several vehicle prowls that have been reported in Wenatchee.
Exercise equipment doubles as academic tool
- Written by Janice Stewart
Two new machines made their debut in the weight room this week at Manson High School.
Sarah Wiggum and Kami Kronbauer, both teachers at the high school, submitted a proposal through the CWU GEAR UP program to purchase ergometers (commonly known as rowing machines) for the Manson Secondary School.
"We are incredibly excited to find an avenue to integrate math and physical education," says Mrs. Wiggum. "Not only will students be able to learn about kinesthetic awareness and timing while they are challenging their cardiovascular system, but they will also be diving into a unit embedded with subjects like rate, power, and momentum."
The mind-body connection can be incredibly powerful when it comes to recall of knowledge, and for some students, being able to make these connections both mentally and physically helps solidify and expand their learning. Wiggum states, "they won’t just be able to remember the process but FEEL the process."
Manson Schools invites residents to work committee 10-15-18
- Written by Janice Stewart
Manson School District is forming a facilities review committee and would like to invite any resident of Manson to join in this work. The committee is charged with:
Reviewing previous committee recommendations
Reviewing enrollment (past, current and projected)
Reviewing current facilities
Reviewing staff and community input
Making recommendations to the Manson School Board
Our first meeting is October 15th at 6:30PM at the Manson District Office.
Please call Janice Stewart at 687-3140 to RSVP
Manson Parks Regular Board Meeting 10-11-18
- Written by Robin Pittman
Regular Board Meeting
142 Pedoi Street, Bumgarner Building, October 11, 2018, 4:10pm
I. Call to Order
II. Flag Salute
III. Agenda Additions and Deletions
IV. Public Comment
V. Approval of Minutes
a. September 13, 2018 Regular Meeting minutes
VI. Financial Review
a. Review Monthly Financial Report
b. Review and Approve Monthly Voucher
VII. Old Business
a. Manson Bay Waterfront Revitalization Project
b. Willow Point Park policy update
c. Credit card
d. Director’s Report
VIII. New Business
a. Singleton playground renovation
b. 2019 Summer Programs
c. Old Swim Hole boundary
d. Annual Report: review ‘Goals and Objectives’ for 2019
Next Regular Meeting: November 8, 2018 at 4:10pm, 142 Pedoi Street, Manson, WA 98831
Drivers urged to use alternate routes to avoid long delays this weekend on I-90 westbound near Cle Elum
- Written by Meagan Lott, WSDOT Communications
CLE ELUM – Drivers traveling westbound on Interstate 90 near Cle Elum this weekend are highly encouraged to use alternate routes in order to avoid long delays and congestion.
For the safety of the traveling public, the Washington State Department of Transportation closed the right westbound lane Tuesday night, Oct. 2 after a string of collisions in the area prompted a closer look at the pavement. This new section of concrete was completed in fall 2017. However, a recent test of the concrete surface shows a subsequent reduction in skid resistance. Work to grind the surface of the roadway to increase friction and add traction is scheduled to start next week between mileposts 88 and 90.
WSDOT anticipates the worst delay will be on Sunday morning starting at 11 a.m. If drivers can either delay their trip until Monday or use alternate routes via US 97 to State Route 970, delays of several hours can be avoided.
WSDOT provides a variety of tools to help plan your trip over Snoqualmie Pass:
- Sign up for email updates and text message alerts.
- Snoqualmie Mountain Pass Web page for real-time travel information and to view traffic cameras.
- Check the weekly Construction Updates and Traffic pages for region-wide updates.
- Tune into the Highway Advisory Radio at 1610 AM and 530 AM.
- Follow us on Twitter @snoqualmiepass.
- Call the I-90 construction hotline at 888-535-0738 or 511.
New eastbound I-90 lanes open east of Snoqualmie Pass, marking halfway point of major improvement project
- Written by Meagan Lott, WSDOT
HYAK – The opening of a new stretch of eastbound Interstate 90 marks the halfway point of a 15-mile improvement project to add lanes, build bridges, stabilize rock slopes, reduce avalanche closures and improve wildlife movement east of Snoqualmie Pass.
The Washington State Department of Transportation and contractor crews opened two of three new eastbound lanes to traffic last week. The third and final lane is scheduled to open in November.
“After many years of hard work, it’s exciting to see we are nearing completion,” said Brian White, WSDOT assistant regional administrator for construction. “The additional lanes and avalanche bridges will provide a more reliable roadway and the wildlife overcrossing will improve safety and connect wildlife habitat.”
In 2013, WSDOT celebrated the completion of the first 3 miles of the corridor. The near-completion of this 4-mile section marks a major milestone as WSDOT is halfway to completing the full 15 miles between Hyak and Easton.
This 7-mile section of I-90 between Hyak and Stampede Pass, with a total budget of $551 million, was funded by the 2005 gas tax. Contractor crews removed more than 2 million cubic yards of material and poured 153,000 cubic yards of concrete to build six new lanes – three in each direction – and 17 new bridges including two avalanche bridges and a wildlife overcrossing.
Work to complete the remaining half of the 15-mile corridor is scheduled to begin in 2021 with completion in 2029. This 8-mile section will add new lanes, stabilize rock slopes, build more wildlife overcrossings and add new chain-up areas. The Connecting Washington funding package provides $426 million to improve this final stretch of I-90.
Titus Petersen, finalist for "Future Tech Leader of the Year"
- Written by Janice Stewart
Titus Petersen, Manson High School student, is among eight local finalists nominated for the “Future Technology Leader of the Year” award sponsored by the Greater Wenatchee Area Technology Alliance (GWATA) for individuals who developed inspirational technology projects.
Titus was nominated for researching and conducting experiments on atmospheric/wind patterns using cutting edge technology and video capabilities to learn about a topic he was interested in. Back in May he launched his first ever weather balloon which traveled over 90,000 feet about the earth. Titus document his project and it is available for viewing at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GU1h5tdO1js&t=1s
The awards ceremony will take place on September 26th at the Wenatchee Convention Cetner – Good Luck Titus!