COVID-19 ordinances, proclamations expire in Renton

The Renton City Council passed the ordinances over the last two years to support businesses affected by the pandemic.

Several of the city of Renton’s remaining COVID-19 emergency proclamations and ordinances have expired as of Wednesday, Nov. 23.

Most of the expirations pertain to permit waivers for businesses in Renton to accommodate social distancing standards and public health guidelines while serving customers and staying afloat during the pandemic.

“The efforts that city staff made throughout the pandemic to try to find ways that they could best support businesses deserve great applause,” said Diane Dobson, president of the Renton Chamber of Commerce. “It’s understated the amount of work they put in to help support our businesses.” Dobson also praised Renton city staff for thinking outside of the box.

These solutions included permit wavers for events and A-frame “Economic Recovery Signs,” temporary use of sidewalks and public right-of-ways, as well as temporary expansion into adjacent space in multi-tenant buildings, including a business’ own private parking lot areas. These permit wavers have now expired.

Designated temporary parking stalls for curbside pick-ups and to-go orders from businesses in the Center Downtown zoning district have also expired.

The extension of free parking hours at the City Center Parking Garage at 655 South 2nd Street have expired as well, which means that it is no longer free to park in the downtown city parking garage for up to 10 hours.

The ordinances are No. 5974 from July 13, 2020, this established a temporary right-of-way permit called “Economic Recovery Revocable Right-Of-Way Permit” which allowed businesses to use public right-of-way and/or their own private parking areas to expand their businesses.

This ordinance was valid through Dec. 31, 2020 but was then extended and amended by Ordinance No. 5997, which was set to expire on June 7, 2021.

Ordinance No. 5997 allowed a designation of a limited number of public parking stalls within the Center Downtown zone for curbside pick-ups and it also expanded the free parking garage hours. These ordinances were then extended by No. 6018 and then extended again by No. 6039.

The Renton City Council decreed earlier in May that the ordinances would expire Nov. 23.