Here is interim City Manager Tim George’s Weekly Report for the week ending March 8, 2024:

A Day to Remember Officer Underwood

On March 7, 2001, Des Moines Master Police Officer Steven J. Underwood was shot and killed while on duty serving the residents of Des Moines. His service and the ultimate sacrifice he made will never be forgotten. The anniversary is a day to remember Steve, but also a day to recognize and appreciate the law enforcement officers who serve and protect our community today.

Farewell but not Goodbye

This past week, the most senior member of the Washington State Senate, and our City’s representative, Karen Keiser announced that she will soon be retiring from the Senate. Senator Keiser has served the people of the 33rd Legislative District and the people of the State of Washington for the last 29 years. Her accomplishments are too many to list here but more information on her enormous contributions to our community can be found here. I have had the privilege of working with Senator Keiser on a number of issues over the years and witnessed firsthand her commitment to the City, our region and our State. On behalf of those of us at City Hall, thank you for your service and enjoy your retirement!

Leprechaun on the Loose?

It’s that time of year again where if you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of a little green creature hiding pots of gold around your neighborhood. And of course our Parks and Rec department is at it again with a special St. Patrick’s Day activity. Have your kids pick up a map and answer sheet at the Field House or print one out from their Facebook Page. Then visit the 7 highlighted parks, find the trivia questions fastened to park benches, and answer the St. Paddy’s themed questions by March 15th to be entered into a prize drawing for gift cards to a local business. You may even find a new community park that you didn’t even know was there! More info here.

Childcare Open House

This upcoming Wednesday (March 13th) the City is hosting an open house for parents to learn more about the childcare programs that we offer. The event will be held from 4:30-6:00pm at the Field House and will feature tours of the building; Q&A with staff; information about Afterschool Care, Break Camps, and Summer Camp; plus an enrichment activity for your kiddos to get involved. You can stop by unannounced or RSVP if you prefer that route. More info can be found here.

This past week, the most senior member of the Washington State Senate, and our City’s representative, Karen Keiser announced that she will soon be retiring from the Senate. Senator Keiser has served

Emergency Preparedness Activities

This week our Director of Emergency Management presented to a community group a briefing on emergency preparedness, including GET READY KING COUNTY plans and PREPARE IN A YEAR informational guides. Both documents are included here for review and download. Should any other community groups wish to discuss Emergency Preparedness, please feel free to contact her directly at or by phone at 206-870-6563.

Meetings of Interest

In addition to day-to-day administrative duties, this week I met individually with Mayor Buxton to discuss upcoming City issues. I met with Mayor Buxton and Deputy Mayor Steinmetz to prepare for the City Council meeting. I met with representatives from Destination Des Moines to continue planning our partnership for summer events. I hosted a roundtable discussion with the City’s Department Director’s to discuss current and upcoming City issues. I met with Councilmember Harris to discuss topics of interest to him. I met with Police Guild Union representatives. I attended the City Council Committee meetings and Study Session on Thursday night. Finally, I met with representatives of the Waterfront Farmers Market to make plans for the upcoming season.

City Council Meeting Summary

The City Council held a Study Session on March 7 that centered around communication. Last year, the City hired a communications consultant to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the City’s internal and external communications and engagement practices to learn how to better serve the evolving needs of a diverse and growing community. The results of that study were presented to the public and the Council on Thursday for additional input and consideration. The draft assessment as well as the other items on the agenda can be found here.

The Finance Committee and the Public Safety & Emergency Management Committee also met on Thursday, the agenda and materials can be found in the links.

The Council will hold a regular meeting next week, Thursday March 14th at 6pm. The agenda and materials can be found here. On the same night, there will be a Transportation Committee meeting at 4pm and an Environment Committee at 5pm.

Sports Update

I could take a moment to brag about the UW men’s basketball team beating the Cougars this week and crushing WSU’s dreams of winning the PAC-12 season conference championship but I won’t. I’ve matured since I was appointed into this position and my days of giving Washington State fans a hard time every time the Huskies clobber them are over. So this week I will give the Cougs a pass and focus on something meaningful. The Mariners continue Spring Training, and with Opening Day against the Boston Red Sox now just 20 days away, I have to admit I have a good feeling about this team. Sure we weren’t good last year and the roster doesn’t look any better, but hope springs eternal every March and I think this just might be our year. The Kraken continue their wild card push tonight against the Jets and the Sounders play Saturday against Philly.

Have a great weekend!

Tim George
Interim City Manager