By Mayor Scott Carmack
There has been a lot going on in Zillah recently so I thought it would be a good idea to update you about some of the things currently happening in the City.
First of all, I want to say that I am very blessed to be your Mayor and I want you to know that your council, staff, and I have been working very hard to make the city into a great community.
COVID-19. After receiving notice that our county was moving to Phase 3, we felt it was important to open our offices. City Hall and the Police Department offices are now open, the parks and skatepark are open, and the city is issuing yard sale permits. COVID-19 protocols for masking and social distancing still apply.
We had to cancel our spring parks and recreation program but are hopeful that we will be able to offer the fall soccer program.
The tough decision was made to cancel our Zillah Community Days celebration again this year but we expect it will resume as usual in 2022.
The city is working on a grant application we plan to submit to AARP to fund a Community Wellness Pathway in Stewart Park. The plans include a pathway around the perimeter of the park, additional benches, and workout equipment for all ages.
Here is some GREAT news!! Last year the city applied to Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) for funding for the Zillah Splash Park. We were just notified that the city has been awarded $255,000 to cover up to half of the cost of the project. Donations, parks, and other funds will cover up to approx. $70,000 of the project so we are still looking for funding to cover the remaining amount. Please contact the city if you would like to donate to the project. Below is a conceptual picture of the Splash Park.
The Third Avenue Sidewalk Project is in progress. The city received state funding of $300,000 to construct sidewalks on Third Avenue from Concord to Blossom Lane. It provides a much-needed connection to the sidewalk in the area. We also worked out a deal with that contractor, to pave portions of the alleyways between First and Second Avenues and 5th and 7th Streets. One of those alleyways is located behind the Zillah Post Office which generates a great deal of traffic. We were very pleased to be able to get that done.
The Merclyn Overlays Project is scheduled to begin soon. It includes much-needed resurfacing to Merclyn, Reed, McCracken, and Bartley streets.
The Vintage Valley Parkway Project continues to be constructed and completion is expected by the end of this year.
Fireworks ARE allowed this year WITH a permit.
American Recover Plan (ARP) funding. The city received notice that we will receive ARP funding. We are still working out the details on how the money can be spent. Along with COVID-19 related and allowable expenditures, the city may be funding grants to non-profit groups and small businesses that lost revenue due to the pandemic.
The city has an ordinance regulating the output of Fats, Oils, and Grease (FOG). Every business it applies to is required to have a FOG plan which covers how the business collects the FOG and disposes of it. This is very important, as grease is the culprit of many clogged-up sewer lines. Please contact Ardele Steele at 509-829-5151 if you need information.
WATV Ordinance. Yakima County recently approved an ordinance allowing the use of Wheeled All-Terrain Vehicles (WATV’s) on certain roads within the county. The city will consider approving that within city limits. It would allow licensed, street-legal, WATV’s, to drive on certain city streets. The vehicles would be required to follow all laws pertaining to motor vehicles.
The issue will be discussed at the next city council meeting on April 19th at 6:00 p.m. We are still conducting council meetings on ZOOM. Contact Sharon Bounds at 509-829-5151 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like a ZOOM invitation sent to you to attend the meeting.
Current Building Activity:
- Guess what!!! Burger King is currently on track to open mid June.
- Yakima Chief Ranch/Hop Nursery is moving along with a temporary Certificate of Occupancy.
- Daniels Kitchen is now open in Zillah
- Two locations for self-storage are being built on West Northstone and Golden Road.
- A burger and latte’ restaurant is being built on Cheyne and West Northstone.
- Zillah self-storage has added the addition of 12,000 square ft. for mini storage.
The Zillah Senior Citizens Board and Trustees met on March 29, 2021. There was a discussion about when and how they could once again meet for lunch. They decided to host their first lunch after the COVID-19 shutdown, on April 28, 2021, at noon in the Civic Center, but with a different lunch format. It will not be a potluck. If you are a senior and are interested in attending, please join them and BRING YOUR OWN LUNCH. The club will furnish drinks and a dessert. Everyone attending will be asked to follow Phase 3 protocols of social distancing and wearing a mask. Mayor Carmack will speak briefly at the meeting. Their President, Jane Smith, stated that they all look forward to again having a fellowship together.