Referred to the City Council due back on 6/15/2022
Ratifying the Appealed Special Tax Assessment for property at 310
LAWSON AVENUE EAST. (File No. J2217A, Assessment No. 228516)
Approve the assessment.
Robert Lo, owner, appeared via phone
Moermond: I have three special assessments in front of me this morning. [Moermond
gives background of appeals process] This first one is for work conducted December
Staff report by Supervisor Lisa Martin: we issued a Summary Abatement Order
December 16, 2021 to the occupant and owner in Kirkland WA to remove garbage,
chairs, and debris from garage, apron, and property. It was not done, no returned mail.
The total proposed assessment is $562. There are photos and videos on this. There is
a long history of noncompliance at this property.
Moermond: why are you appealing?
Lo: I’m the owner, I live out of state. We hire a local property management company,
Midwest, it has a long history. Since we picked it up, we found out it has issues. We’ve
had these issues since November of 2020 during Covid. First we are appealing
because by the time we receive these abatement orders in Washington it is often
already passed the action deadline. That is one of the issues. You mentioned you sent
to the occupant and Investor Capital. We found out these were being sent to them,
which is the previous owner, and they of course didn’t let us know. April or June of
2021 we let the City know that our property management is Midwest and we submitted
a form to the City in June. We have 3 little kids so we relied on our property
management company to take care of it, but we found out in October that they were
still sending most of the letters to Investor Capital. My property management company
was not consistently receiving notice regarding these orders. I do agree the pictures
are of garbage at my property, but I wanted to share my point of view that it was often
already past the deadline, my property management company didn’t get a letter. Now
I’m working more closely with the management company, we are paying them extra to
go over twice a week to make sure the garbage is being put out. They weren’t being
collected by Waste Management. We sent out notices to each tenant to make sure we
reduce the amount of trash. There is also dumping. We are also installing cameras to
monitor the dumping. I’m asking for leniency on this matter. There is no doubt it is
trash at my property but I wanted to share the whole situation.
Moermond: I have to tell you. I heard your statement and what I’m drawing from it is
that you as the owner have been getting notification out of state. You expect that the
local property manager will take care of business, so you have the expectation they are
managing. Now you’re working more closely. The problems began with Covid in
October of 2020. But that is when you acquired the property, I can’t say whether it is
Covid or poor management. The legal requirement is to provide notice to owner of
record via first class mail. In this case the order was issued December 16 and the
work wasn’t done until 12 days later. That could have been 2 garbage cycles, for sure
it was 1. It is a mess in these photos.
Lo: I’m trying to work on this puzzle of why Waste Management wasn’t doing the