City of Orting Homepage
                       110 Train Street SE - PO Box 489 - Orting, WA 98360 - 360.893.2219


COMPREHENSIVE PLAN OPEN HOUSE AND PUBLIC HEARING Monday, November 6 Orting Multipurpose Center Open House: 6:00 – 7:00 PM Planning Commission Public Hearing – 7:00 PM ORTING IS GROWING! The City will hold a public open house discussion followed by the Planning Commission’s Public Hearing to receive citizen’s comments.  City staff will be available to… Continue Reading

Position Opening- Maintenance Worker 1

The City is recruiting for the position of Maintenance Worker 1.

The Maintenance Worker I is primarily responsible for maintenance of municipal parks, the cemetery, streets, water, wastewater, stormwater and City facilities so that they are safe, clean, functional and attractive at all times. The Maintenance Worker I will cross-train in all departments as allowed by the Public Works Supervisor. Closes October 18, 2017.

Download an Application Here Continue Reading

City of Orting – Request for Qualifications

City of Orting
Request for Qualifications (RFQ)

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the City of Orting invites the submittal of a Statement of Qualifications (“SOQ”) from firms interested in providing design-build services for the City of Orting’s Public Works Maintenance Building located on Rocky Road NE. Please submit SOQ’s to Mark Bethune, City Administrator, City of Orting, 110 Train St. SE, PO Box 489, Orting, WA 98360. SOQ’s shall be submitted no later than October 20th, 2017 at 4:30pm. Contact Mark Bethune at or visit the City’s website at for more information. Continue Reading

The most recent message from Mayor Pestinger September 21, 2017

I would like to share two items with you. Keep in mind that this is my personal opinion as Mayor, and not necessarily the position of the City Council. Thanks for reading this.

Advanced Notice of Potential Lahars:
My recollection is that several years ago at a High Cedars meeting, Volcano experts from USGS explained that they have 3 sets of sensors on Mt. Rainier. The set highest up the mountain gives notice if there is any kind of rumbling. In a real lahar, that notice would be about 90 minutes before the lahar would reach Orting. The middle set of sensors would give about 70 minutes notice. It could be triggered by other causes such as a couple of rocks breaking loose and rolling down. The lowest one would definitely confirm a lahar and give 45-50-minute notice to Orting.
At that meeting I asked, why not notify the community when the second set gives 70 minute notice, with the understanding that it is a preliminary notice and it could well be a “False Alarm”. Then people could choose to leave immediately, or wait for the 45 minute definite confirming notice. Some would go early, some would wait. My thinking was that this would spread out the evacuation traffic over a longer period of time. The idea was rejected at that meeting.
Later on USGS scientists told me that they are concerned about giving potential “False-Positive” notices that could cause unnecessary panic, injury and/or fatalities. They also feared that if they cried “Woolf” too many times, people might ignore the real warning that gives 45-50 minutes notice. Therefore, they will only set off the Lahar sirens when the lowest set of sensors confirms that a real lahar is in progress.
The current system requires the information gathered from all 3 sites to analyze the volume and speed of the lahar and to determine if it is big enough to reach Orting. However, USGS scientists just told me that they are working on a newer system that, when done, will be able to provide better forecasts at an earlier time. For an extended period of time they will run both systems to make sure there are no glitches in the new one. Once the new sensor system is properly running, I will ask USGS to notify the City when one of the earlier sensors (located higher up on the mountain) indicates some form of activity.
While it would be relatively easy for city staff to walk out on the current 45-50-minute notice, their equipment would stay abandoned in town. I believe there would be a benefit to our citizens if the Fire, Police, and Public Works Departments could receive earlier notice of a potential, still unconfirmed lahar, to get their equipment to the Emergency Operations Center on Cemetery Hill. Then they could also block the roads into the valley until it is determined that it was a false alarm. In case of a real lahar they would have the tools and equipment ready to help the community immediately in the “after” situation. If the School District would also want to be authorized to receive such advance notice, they could have a “Fire Drill” practicing how they can bus special needs kids out of the valley.
These are preliminary thoughts, and a lot of details need to be worked out. Of course any decision will ultimately be made by the City Council with lots of community input.

A Quicker Way to Build a Lahar Escape:
The following information is also my personal strategic thinking as Mayor and not the positon of the City Council:
I’m excited that the Fire Chief and others have found a way to build a less expensive and more practical lahar evacuation bridge system. There would be two level bridges across the Carbon River connecting the Orting side levee to existing trails on the other side. One would be located close to Bridge St, the other close to a McCutcheon St extension.
According to Scott Jones, Senior Vice President of Newland Corp. and General Manager of the Tehaleh Development, the 2 bridges would cost approximately $ 4 million and trail improvements would keep the total cost well under $8 million. This bridge and trail system would provide an 8-mile hiking and biking trail loop for year-round use.
Tehaleh will have to pay substantial Park Impact Fees to Pierce County. Since a private company can probably get this bridge construction done quicker and cheaper than the government, I will work with Scott to ask the County to grant offsetting Impact Fees credit if Tehaleh builds the two bridges and does the trail improvements.
Also, a multi-purpose trail and bridge system will have a much better chance to qualify for multiple funding sources. Completion of this project will require the cooperation and teamwork of the City, Newland Co., Pierce County leaders and Parks Department, the Puyallup Tribe, and Federal and State Legislators.
These two bridges and the Soldiers Home route would provide 3 ways to get out of the valley. One of the challenges will be to have an effective communication system to let parents know that their children are safe and where they are.
I want to express my appreciation to the many dedicated community members who have worked tirelessly for more than twenty years to develop and propose the lahar escape “Bridge 4 Kids”. As I understand it, the latest concept would be a one-time use, hanging suspension bridge with steps. It would be anchored in the valley on this side and up on top of the plateau on the Tehaleh side. The estimated cost would be $ 40-50 million. The city’s insurer, RMSA, of the Association of Washington Cities has indicated to us that the insurance premium for this bridge would be approximately $100,000 per year.
We recognize that everyone’s goal is to save as many lives as possible if the worst case scenario should ever happen; and I believe it’s time for some frank discussions of more than one way to accomplish this goal. Any city action on this strategy would include public meetings and City Council deliberations.

Joe Pestinger Continue Reading

Orting Crime Report Data

Crime Report Data Is Now Available “On-Line” Hope you like the new service available to explore our local community police incidents.  Currently, only those incidents where a police report was written are displayed.  We hope in the not too distant future to have all incidents available even when a formal report is not made. Have… Continue Reading

Notice of Public Hearings- 2018 Proposed Utility Rates


Wednesday, September 13, and 27, 2017
7:00p.m. Multipurpose Center, 202 Washington Ave. S.

Notice is hereby given that the Orting City Council will be conducting public hearings on the proposed Final 2018 Utility Rates. The hearings are scheduled for Wednesday, September 13th and 27th, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. at the Multipurpose Center, 202 Washington Ave. S., Orting, WA. The purpose of the hearings is to hear public testimony on the above listed.

Any person may submit written or oral comments at the public hearing. Written comments may be submitted to the City Clerk’s office at 110 Train St. SE, PO Box 489, Orting, WA, 98360 no later than 5:00 p.m. on September 26th, 2017; otherwise, comments must be submitted at the hearing. Continue Reading


At a recent City Council meeting citizens spoke about the uses of the vehicle loaned to the City by the State Patrol. Some were for limiting the use of the vehicle to Search & Rescue operations only, while others are for expanding its potential use to include protecting our police officers in the event of a high risk incident.

When the question of “why we got this vehicle” came up in May of 2016, I wrote a letter of explanation to one of our citizens and I would like to share that letter with all of you now:

May 8, 2016
Hello __________,
I thought I should take a moment to share with you how we got to the V-150 vehicle. One of the reasons why I ran for mayor was that I wanted to be more involved in City-wide emergency preparation.
The Army leadership at JBLM has made a tremendous effort to be connected to local communities in Pierce County. I appreciated their reaching out to Orting. In looking at surplus vehicles I concluded that a Stewart & Stevenson LMTV 4×4 Cargo Truck could come in handy in various emergencies in town. (See attached picture.) I had hoped we could get two of them for free. One for regular use by our Public Works Department and one for spare parts. I learned that we would have to pay at least $3,500 for each. And to be prepared for pushing stalled vehicles out of the travel lanes we would need to buy or build some form of easily attachable push bumper. We’ve made a couple of trips to the Base but have not yet found the right vehicle.

Our Police Chief has a good working relationship with the State Patrol and has saved the City quite a bit of money by getting us their ‘hand-me-downs’ for free. They mentioned that they would soon surplus their V-150, that was used for Search & Rescue and SWAT activities, since they now have two bigger vehicles for those purposes.

While this was not what I had originally envisioned, I appreciated that it could do some of the things I was looking for; that there was no cost to get this vehicle; that spare parts are also available from the Federal Surplus system; that it already has an attached push blade to move cars or downed trees out of the way; that Bates Technical College wants to do the maintenance for us for free (except for supplies); that the Soldiers Home is willing to store it for us; and should the need ever arise here or in our neighboring communities, that we could make it available to protect the lives of First Responders.
I realize that there are certain restrictions that come with this vehicle. For instance I had hoped that the Fire Department could train their staff to operate it and use it in river rescues since it maneuvers in water and can float and act like a boat. However, I understand that it must remain under the control of a Police Department. (And they will certainly assist the Fire Department.)

The bottom line: I’m glad we are getting this vehicle. I will probably still try to get a surplus LMTV 4×4 for our Public Works Department, and a trailer for the Back-hoe/front-end loader so that it doesn’t get the wear and tear of driving back and forth between worksites and the material site. I’m also looking for trailered generators. Congressman Reichert’s Aide is helping me to see if Homeland Security can get us one for free.
Well _________, I just thought I should share my thinking with you.
Thanks for reading this.

Here is how I feel about this vehicle today:
1) I hope it will be of some use if there is a search and rescue need in our community for someone who is lost.
2) I hope we will never ever have a serious Lahar situation. But we want to be prepared for the worst and hope for the best. Its ability to push stuff out of the way may help clear roads.
3) I hope we will never ever have a serious “crazed shooter or terrorist” incident in our community. But if we do I want to give our First Responders all the protection we can give.

However the ultimate decision of the use of the vehicle rests with the City Council.

Joe Pestinger
Mayor, City of Orting

P.S. If you would like to share your thoughts with me please call me or leave a message for me at City Hall. 360-893-2219 Extension 125 Continue Reading


There was a water main break today August 31, 2017 on 177th Street East. The water main has been turned off to repair the leak. The City is working to get the water leak repaired and the water back on as soon as possible. Affected customers have been notified of the water shut off and will be notified when water service is restored.

After the water is turned back on customers in the affected areas will be on a boil water advisory notice until testing results are confirmed.

For more information contact City Hall at 360-893-2219 Continue Reading

© City of Orting . Site Created and Hosted by Networked Listings
Admin Login | Report a Broken Link | Privacy Policy

110 Train Street SE - PO Box 489
Orting, WA 98360 - 360.893.2219