Kristina Walker - Community Updates from City Council

At Large Pos. 8 - Kristina Walker Header



Please join me for my open office hours, Monday, March 21, 2022 from 4 PM to 5 PM via Zoom. To attend, email Claire Goodwin at This is your opportunity to have a smaller, more casual conversation with me about anything the City has jurisdiction over. If that time doesn’t work and you have something important to discuss, please don’t hesitate to set up a time to meet with me.

The City Council is now holding public meetings, including our Tuesday noon Study Session and 5 PM Council Meeting, in a hybrid format. This means you can attend in person at Council Chambers located on the first floor of the Tacoma Municipal Building at 747 Market Street or continue to listen in via Zoom, Facebook Live, or TV Tacoma. Access details are available at

Below, you’ll find information on a few of the things I’ve been working on in 2022 to advance the six goals of the City’s strategic plan, Tacoma 2025: housing, access, belief and trust, health, community safety, and livable wage jobs. Much of the work underway is in support of the City’s transformation efforts as established in Resolution 40622, adopted by Council in June 2020. In addition to the regular reports from City Manager Elizabeth Pauli on the topic of transformation at Council meetings, you can also visit

I’d love to hear from you!  Feel free to reach out anytime at

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Kristina Walker


Housing Disparities Study

In 2020, I sponsored a resolution requesting a Housing Disparity Study to better understand who owns homes in Tacoma, so that we could address any disparities in our programs. We know homeownership rates among households of color continue to lag behind that of white households and the causes are systemic and complex, to include historic redlining, race-based restrictive covenants, predatory lending. The study confirmed disparities exist, particularly among Black households, and provided recommendations to move forward on programs that addresses these disparities. Staff from the Community and Economic Development Department presented these findings during Study Session on February 15 and are working on the recommendations.  Budget requests reflecting this work are anticipated in the upcoming budget development process.


Rental Assistance

The rental assistance portal is open! Residents may find more information at The program provides up to 12 months of assistance dating back to March 2020 as well as three months future assistance and serves households up to 80% of Pierce County Area Median Income.  Applicants may also qualify for utility assistance through the program. Since 2021, the City has provided 859 households with $6,147,114 in rental assistance and 1,835 households with $2,168,992 in utility assistance. The City’s Rental Assistance Fund at the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation received 30 gifts totaling $32,820.  We were able to honor and thank those who donated at the March 8 Council meeting.

Access / Mobility

Vision Zero

According to the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) vehicle crash data, between 2016 and 2020, there were approximately 3,400 reported collisions in Tacoma, of which almost 400 resulted in someone being killed or seriously injured. Vision Zero is a global initiative to eliminate all traffic fatalities and serious injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, equitable mobility for all. In 2020, I was proud to sponsor Resolution 40559, committing to joining the Vision Zero Action Network and committing to a Vision Zero goal that eliminates traffic fatalities and serious injuries in Tacoma by 2035. This project work has kicked off and you can learn more online at the City’s Vision Zero website

In addition, through my work on the National League of Cities’ Transportation and Infrastructure Systems Committee, Tacoma has taken the Safety First Challenge and was recently featured on their website.  Check it out here: Tacoma, WA’s Pathway to Achieving Vision Zero - National League of Cities


Tacoma to Puyallup Trail

WSDOT, in partnership with Pierce County, the cities of Fife, Puyallup, and Tacoma, the Puyallup Tribe, and other cities, agencies, and organizations, is hosting an online open house to update the community on plans for the Tacoma to Puyallup Regional Trail, a key multi-modal connection for the region. The Washington State Legislature included $35.5 million to construct the trail in the Move Ahead Washington transportation package, which is awaiting Governor Inslee’s signature. Share your thoughts on priorities for trail features by April 5 online here:

Belief and Trust

Wanted: Passion, Skills and Experience

The City is always looking for applicants for its volunteer committees, boards and commissions (CBCs). You can apply any time for any CBC and all current openings are posted here: Committees, Boards and Commissions - City of Tacoma. In addition, I’ve been working with community members and staff to update our processes to be more inclusive and welcoming. This “continuous improvement” project will result in an update to the CBC Handbook later this year.


Climate Action Plan

At the end of 2021, the Council unanimously voted to adopt Resolution 40878 committing the City of Tacoma to implement the 2030 Tacoma Climate Action Plan (CAP). Based on a 14-month input process involving over 1,000 community members, the Plan sets Tacoma on a path for a carbon-neutral community by 2050, with proposed investments in healthy, affordable housing; clean, reliable transportation; protections for public health; and good-paying, green jobs. The CAP outlines 64 climate actions with a deadline of 2024 to address the largest sources of community greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, including consumption, transportation, industry, and buildings, and to prepare for local climate impacts, such as wildfire smoke, extreme heat, and sea-level rise.  Get involved at


COVID-19 Resources

We continue to work with the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department to support Tacoma residents and businesses in their ongoing efforts to recover from the pandemic.  This includes providing vaccinations, tests, and medical access to all Tacomans. For more information about COVID-19, please visit

Community Safety

New Police Chief Avery Moore

In January, the City Council confirmed City Manager Elizabeth Pauli’s appointment of Avery Moore as Tacoma’s new Police Chief. Chief Moore will be responsible for the oversight and administrative management of the Tacoma Police Department’s daily operations, and for achieving the department’s mission, vision and strategic objectives in alignment with the vision, goals and priorities of the City Council and the community. Chief Moore comes to us from the Dallas Police Department. He has jumped right in, meeting and embracing community, while leading the department.  You can read more about Chief Moore here.


Alternative Response Study

Through the City’s work with 21CP Solutions, we have recently received recommendations on developing an Alternative Response Model to policing. In addition, we received a report on divertible calls last year, which identified opportunities to divert mental health crisis calls and non-emergency calls to civilian responders. In 2021, the Council budgeted to get this process started and as we work through those recommendations, the City Manager will be reporting out to the Council. I, along with my Council colleagues are prioritizing the implementation of this model to address community safety.


Window Replacement Opportunity

Mayor Victoria Woodards recently announced the availability of $300,000 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to offset costs businesses incurred replacing windows at their Tacoma location. Eligible small businesses, with no more than 15 full-time equivalent employees, may submit an application online at for a Window Replacement Grant.  Applications are available in English, Khmer, Korean, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese. Language assistance is available upon request. The deadline for submitting a grant application is March 28, 2022 at 11:59 pm PST.  Grant recipients will be selected via random lottery and notified on April 6, 2022. Questions or requests to receive information in alternate formats can be directed to or by calling (253) 591-5208.

Livable Wage Jobs

Pathways to Healthcare

In the last year, I’ve had the honor to support two great projects that support livable wage jobs. Our Pathways to Healthcare project is a partnership with Workforce Central, the National League of Cities, Multicare and the Tacoma Housing Authority. Through the Healthcare Pathways pilot, we hope to address the barriers limiting residents from entering the healthcare field, and build local capacity to expand these pathways in the future. The program will not only provide training for available healthcare jobs but wrap-around services to remove barriers to entry. The project is in development now and will be available to residents later this year. Through data gathered in this pilot, we will determine the viability of a larger program in the future.


Mayors for a Guaranteed Income: Tacoma’s GRIT Program

A guaranteed income is a monthly, cash payment given directly to individuals. It is unconditional, with no strings attached and no work requirements. A guaranteed income is meant to supplement, rather than replace, the existing social safety net. Tacoma’s guaranteed income demonstration, called GRIT (Growing Resilience In Tacoma), began in December 2021 and is providing 110 families facing poverty a monthly stipend of $500 for 12 months. Participants were randomly selected from a pool of qualified individuals. It has been my honor to work with Mayor Woodards and our team at United Way of Pierce County as well as the national Mayors for a Guaranteed Income to bring this project to fruition in Tacoma. This pilot will provide data locally and nationally to determine effectiveness and feasibility on a broader scale.

Learn more: Guaranteed Income Initiative - Growing Resilience In Tacoma (GRIT) | United Way of Pierce County (

Other ways you can get involved in City-supported programs that support livable wage jobs: