Morning Fizz: Two More SPD Chief Applicants?
Caffeinated News & Gossip: File this one under gossip, but we've heard two more names in the SPD chief search.
1. Yesterday the Seattle Times reported that Mayor Ed Murray's police chief committee is focusing on four applicants for the job, revealing the name Kathleen O'Toole, a former Boston police chief, as one of the leading candidates. She would be the first woman to head the SPD.
Fizz has heard two more names that may be in the running.
First, Patrick R. Melvin, the current chief for the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Melvin, who is African-American, was previously a commander in Phoenix.
The other name we'd heard is Ed Aceves, the current chief in La Mesa, California.
We have messages out to Melvin and Aceves.
UPDATE: Chief Aceves is not an applicant, however, we've now got another name: Robert Lehner, the chief in Elk Grove, California.
We've got a message in to Lehner.
The Salt River department is small, with 114 sworn officers. The SPD has about 1,300 officers.
Mayor Murray scolded people for leaking names at a press conference yesterday and members of his search committee would not confirm the tip for us.
Another UPDATE: At the Seattle Times, reporter Steve Miletich has the scoop on a fourth name: Frank Milstead, the chief of the Mesa, Ariz., Police Department and a former commander with the Phoenix Police Department.
2. Follow-up: Last week, Fizz reported that the Puget Sound Regional Council (PSRC), the regional agency that plans and oversees federal funding for regional transportation projects, had, after a public comment process to update its long-range 2040 plan, passed up on a series of recommendations made by the transit advocacy group Transportation Choices Coalition.
Yesterday, at PSRC's executive board meeting, board member and King County Council Member Joe McDermott (his staffer is TCC's former policy director), proposed including TCC's recommendations, which all focused on incorporating health as a metric when doing transportation planning such as "adding language to emphasize the economic impacts of healthy transportation projects," "add reference to link between air quality and health benefits," and "add some additional language about co-benefits of certain transportation investments related to active living and climate change."
Wonky stuff, but it's an important tenet for environmentalists who are trying to make trasnportation planning less about cars and roads and—thinking more comprehensively—make it more about building dense, pedestrian and bike-friendly, transit-centered communities.
Seattle Port Commisioner Bill Bryant also voted against the McDermott's measure.
McDermott's measure had enough support from urban members on the regional committee—King County Executive Dow Constantine, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, Seattle City Council Members Tim Burgess and Tom Rasmussen, Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland, and Bellevue Mayor Claudia Balducci—that it passed after a heated debate.
Transit fans noted that WSDOT's rep on the committee, Amy Scarton, voted for the measure, which they took as a good sign because they've been trying, and failing, to incorporate similar language into state transportation planning.
In addition to Republican and suburban opposition—Republican King County Council Member Kathy Lambert (Issaquah, North Bend, Carnation, Duval, Snoqualmie, rural Woodinville, and unincorporated Northeast King County) not surprisingly voted 'no'—Seattle Port Commisioner Bill Bryant also voted against McDermott's measure.
3. Just a thought for Friday: Hillary Clinton/Patty Murray