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Library, golf course on list of Enumclaw projects

The city of Enumclaw intends to see the contentious library issue settled, begin construction on the much-awaited Welcome Center and find someone to operate the municipal golf course – all by the close of the year.

Those three items highlight the city’s 2012 “program of work.” Every year, city leadership identifies a list of items to accomplish during the calendar year, including a desired outcome and staff resources.

First on this year’s list is the possible annexation of Enumclaw into the King County Library System, a process the city council started earlier this month. The city has greatly scaled back its support of the library and is pushing for an April 17 annexation vote. If passed, the transition to the KCLS would take place in late spring or early summer. Enumclaw property owners would, in 20113, begin paying the additional taxes that would come with annexation.

With the Welcome Center, the city is hoping to complete final design, finalize lease arrangements and prepare bid documents. Before the calendar flips to another year, the city is hoping to break ground on the project, according to City Administrator Mike Thomas.The Welcome Center is envisioned as a two-story structure sitting on city-owned land between the Expo Center fieldhouse and the golf course. Tenants will be the National Park Service and U.S. Forest Service.

The golf course has been on a financial decline since the city took ownership from the county. At one time the 18-hole course was a profit maker. Now, Thomas said, the golf course has operated in the red two consecutive years while under city management.

The city’s answer is to seek a private operator to take responsibility. That was attempted a couple of years ago, but the belief was proposals by potential vendors left the city with too much risk and too little reward.

Among the 10 remaining items on the 2012 program or work are the following:

Identifying city streets most in need of repair and finding a funding solution.

Developing a five-year plan for retaining existing busiensses and attracting new busness.

Define long-term staffing needs for public safety and identifying funding options.

Installing new park equipment, funded with park impact fees.

Adding to the list of signs pointing to attractions for city visitors and working toward an entry monument.

Installing a new electronic payroll system by the end of the year.

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