July 2019 Unincorporated Area Newsletter

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July 2019

Have a fun—and safe—Fourth of July

Firework display on shoreline

Watching a professional fireworks show is a great way to enjoy pyrotechnic fun while minimizing the risk of wildfires and injury. Whether you live in a city or unincorporated King County, chances are there’s a professional show close to you. Here are several options:

The Great Carnation 4th of July Celebration
Sammamish Fourth on the Plateau
Renton 4th of July
Maple Valley Family 4th
Kent Fourth of July Splash
SeaTac Family Fourth of July
Federal Way Red, White & Blues Festival 4th of July Celebration
Emerald Downs Fireworks Spectacular in Auburn (July 3)
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance Seafair Summer Fourth

For do-it-yourselfers

Children with sparklers

In unincorporated King County: Fireworks may be discharged only on Thursday, July 4, between 9 a.m. and midnight.

By King County Code, fireworks are not allowed on any King County Parks properties—including Marymoor Park, Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center, Skyway Park in Skyway, and all other parks properties—except for authorized fireworks displays (see list above).

In cities: A number of cities in King County restrict or prohibit the discharge of fireworks. To find out what rules apply in your area, check with the specific city.

And if you do celebrate at home, King County Fire Marshal Chris Ricketts urges you to follow the three B’s:

> Be prepared before lighting any firework
> Be safe when fireworks are being lit
> Be responsible after fireworks are done 

For details, visit King County Permitting's Burn Bans & Fireworks page or the Washington State Patrol Fireworks page

Get ready for wildfire (and smoke) season

Eagle Creek wildfire

Wildfires and their smoke have made their presence felt in western Washington for the past two summers, and hot, dry weather may bring them back again. King County is partnering with the City of Seattle, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, and other regional stakeholders to help our communities prepare for—and function during—what's expected to be another busy wildfire season.

Learn what you and your community can do to prevent wildfires, how to protect your health when the air is smoky, ways to keep your pets safe and comfortable on the King County Emergency News Wildfire and smoke Info page and on the Public Health Insider blog.

Community Service Area news

King County holds first four 2019 town halls

Councilmember Reagan Dunn speaking

King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn and the King County Department of Local Services co-hosted the county's first four 2019 Community Service Areas Program Town Hall events in June.

The evening events—in the Greater Maple Valley/Cedar River, Four Creeks/Tiger Mountain, Southeast King County, and Fairwood areas—gave participants an opportunity to meet county officials, learn about services, and talk about issues that affect them and their communities.

Each meeting was attended by 60-100 people. Residents heard from Dunn, their elected representative (shown at right), as well as leaders of the Department of Local Services, which aims to serve as a “virtual city hall” for residents of unincorporated King County. These included Local Services Director John Taylor, Road Services Division Director Rick Brater, and Permitting Division Director Jim Chan.

Permitting staff at town hall

Staff members Ty Peterson and Kim Layman from the King County Permitting Division greet community members at the Southeast King County town hall in Enumclaw.

Other county departments that serve the unincorporated areas were also represented, including the Sheriff's Office (Major Troy Olmsted), Natural Resources and Parks (Director Christie True), Water and Land Resources (Division Director Josh Baldi), and Elections (Director Julie Wise).

Each event started with an open house where participants connected with both county and non-county service providers, including the Assessor’s Office, Public Health – Seattle and King County, Metro Transit, Elections, Emergency Management, and Animal Services.

Local Services will host another round of town halls for the remaining Community Service Areas in the fall. Learn more on King County's Community Service Areas website.

Residents weigh in at Skyway community forum

Skyway residents writing comments

More than 70 Skyway-West Hill residents came to a community forum on June 1 at Dimmitt Middle School to get their questions answered and provide input for the upcoming subarea plan land use impacts report.

Subarea plans are part of the King County Comprehensive Plan. Each one includes specific policies and guidelines to shape development and capital improvement decisions in one of King County’s six rural Community Service Areas and five urban Potential Annexation Areas.

Each Community Service Areas has—or is scheduled to have—a subarea plan, ensuring that the entire unincorporated area receives planning on a regular cycle. This planning includes regular assessment of the area’s land use goals, population changes, and new development.

To address unique issues in each area, the subarea plans may also focus on rural town centers, urban neighborhoods, or corridor approaches.

At the June 1 Skyway-West Hill forum hosted by King County Local Services, residents provided comments on many issues facing the community, including developing a community center, increasing mobility for residents and traffic, street lighting and safety features, and developing residential and business zoning policies that support the community.

Skyway-West Hill is the second plan to be developed since King County renewed its subarea planning program in 2015.

To learn more, provide comment, or stay informed about future subarea planning, visit the county's website or contact Kevin LeClair at 206-477-2717.

King County to update its Comprehensive Plan

Time to plan

The King County Comprehensive Plan guides growth and development in the unincorporated areas of King County and sets county policy on major issues, including annexations, transportation, urban area boundaries, and environmental protection. The plan affects development regulations in the King County Code, such as zoning, planning, land segregation, and sewer and water.

For its 2020 update to the plan and code, the county is considering revisions to the plan on sea-level rise, fossil fuel facilities, agricultural production district off-site mitigation, and more.

Learn about these draft changes and share your thoughts with county staff members at one of five community meetings in July:

Bear Creek / Sammamish / Snoqualmie Valley
Tuesday, July 9, 6-8 p.m.
Stillwater Elementary School
11530 320th Avenue NE, Carnation

Skyway–West Hill
Thursday, July 11, 6-8 p.m.
Albert Talley High School
7800 S 132nd Street, Skyway

Four Creeks / Maple Valley / Southeast King County
Tuesday, July 16, 6-8 p.m.
Maple Valley Library
21844 SE 248th Street, Maple Valley

Vashon / Maury Island
Thursday, July 18, 6-8 p.m.
Vashon High School
9600 SW 204th Street, Vashon

North Highline
Thursday, July 25, 6-8 p.m.
Seola Gardens Community Room
11215 5th Avenue SW, Seattle

Learn more at https://kingcounty.gov/compplan 
Contact: Ivan Miller, Comprehensive Planning Manager, or call 206-263-8297
To comment on the plan electronically, email compplan@kingcounty.gov 

King County Water and Land Resources news

OrcaHero banner

Are you—or do you know—an #OrcaHero?

Many #OrcaHeroes help preserve a clean, beautiful environment through their daily actions.

They help keep our waters and Puget Sound clean and orcas healthy. Every action adds up—cleaning the pollution that comes from our homes, neighborhoods, and businesses.

Share your #OrcaHero on social media and tag @PugetSoundStartsHere
Find info at Puget Sound Starts Here! Y en Español.

Free forest health seminar July 22 in Enumclaw

Dying trees

Learn why trees are dying and what to do

Washington State University (WSU) Extension Forestry will give a free public seminar to explain why so many trees are dying in Western Washington and what property owners can do.

Learn what makes forests healthy or unhealthy and how to recognize when there’s a problem on your property. Topics include insects, diseases, and drought, including their environmental roles and the important interactions between them. Learn how property owners can increase tree resilience and mitigate impacts. The seminar will be taught by Kevin Zobrist, professor of forestry at WSU and author of the book Native Trees of Western Washington.

Details and registration

Monday, July 22, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Enumclaw Library, 1700 1st Street, Enumclaw

Admission is free, but due to space limitations, registration is required. Registration will open on July 8. For more details and to register, visit the Enuclaw Library event page.

Info: email Kelsey Ketcheson, WSU Extension Forestry, or call 206-263-1128

Public Health - Seattle & King County news

Family holding hands in lake

Swim safe this summer

With temperatures on the rise, now is the time to talk to your family about staying safe this summer while enjoying King County’s amazing swim beaches and rivers.

Public Health strongly recommends swimming only at life guarded beaches, and using life preservers when out on the water. Get a list of life guarded beaches and find free or reduced cost swim lessons at the Public Health Insider blog.

Executive Constantine’s plan will ensure all King County residents have access to open spaces

Green Space for All

On June 20, King County Executive Dow Constantine announced a legislative package to the King County Council that will ensure King County prioritizes new investments in parks, forests, and other natural resources in communities that have traditionally had the least access to green space.

One quarter of King County residents — about 500,000 people — do not live within easy access to a publicly-owned park, green space, or trail.

“The Open Space Equity Cabinet I convened last year delivered exactly what our region needs: A clear plan to ensure that everyone who calls King County home has easy access to green space,” Constantine said. “Here – in the most beautiful part of this great nation – we will make open spaces open to all.”

Learn more

Safety policy limits bikes on Water Taxi sailings

Bikes secured to vessel rail

The King County Water Taxi is now limiting the number of bicycles per sailing on the Sally Fox and Doc Maynard to 26 bikes, and all bikes must fit within the marked bike storage area on each vessel.

The move is part of a new bike safety policy. In recent years, a growing number of passengers have brought bikes aboard the Water Taxi, especially on sailings to and from Vashon Island during peak bicycle season.

At times, this has created unsafe conditions for passengers when bikes have ended up secured to handrails or within walkways or doorways. Learn more

Photo: bikes secured to railings pose a safety hazard for passengers who need to use the railings.

Road Services news

Construction projects

Old metal culvert

Road closure, June 26-Aug. 30:
55th Avenue S, from 900 feet south of S 277th Street to S 284th Way
Reason: culvert replacement (part of Sound Transit's Sounder South Expanded Service project). Photo at right shows the existing small culvert, which will be replaced by a fish-passable box culvert. Learn more

Sidewalk repair, 3 weeks beginning mid-July:
14th Avenue SW, between SW Roxbury Street and SW 98th Street
Reason: repair 200 feet of sidewalk and 120 feet of curb and gutter.

Lane restriction, July 5 (7 a.m.-5 p.m.):
212th Avenue SE, from SE 400th Street to SE 416th Street
Reason: Chip seal application will require intermittent lane restrictions. Motorists will be directed through the work zone and should expect delays. After the work is finished, reduced speed limits will be in place for several days. Note: this work is weather dependent. Learn more

Road construction sign

Use King County Road Alerts to keep up with summer road construction

The best way to keep up with county road construction projects in your neighborhood or along your commute is by signing up for Road Alerts.

You’ll get updates on all county road construction sent directly to your phone or email inbox.

Parks news

Eat well, live well at 5th annual CHOMP!

King County’s local food and sustainable living festival returns to Marymoor Park near Redmond on Saturday, Aug. 17 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Celebrate all that is fresh, delicious, local and sustainable at CHOMP!, featuring hands-on workshops, zucchini races, a farmers market, an upcycle bazaar, and so much more, including live music from Mavis Staples, Caspar Babypants and The Black Tones to name a few. This FREE event will inspire, entertain and feed your appetite for fresh, local and exciting food and sustainability. Follow the event on Facebook to stay up-to-date on all the CHOMP! news.

CHOMP banner

Maury Island Natural Area contaminated soil cleanup 

To minimize public exposure to soil contaminated by Asarco’s Tacoma Smelter plume, starting this August King County Parks will be capping nearly all of the backcountry trails and access roads at Maury Island Natural Area with gravel and soil and constructing one new trail to connect a future parking area. The park will be open during construction, but some trail segments will be temporarily closed during work. Work hours: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mon-Fri and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday.
Contact: Lindsey Miller, Capital Project Manager, 206-477-3549

Join us for movies at Coalfield and Ravensdale parks

Bring your low-backed chairs, blankets, and snacks and enjoy a relaxed evening watching a movie in the open air. Movies will be projected onto a 40-foot tall inflatable movie screen, so invite your friends, teammates, and family—we’ve got space! Movies begin after sunset.

Ravensdale Park — “Shrek” on Saturday, July 6 (RSVP on the Facebook event page)
Coalfield Park — “Up” on Saturday, July 27 (RSVP on the Facebook event page)

Forest Stewardship in Southeast King County

King County Parks will carry out several forest stewardship projects this summer at designated working forests. These forest lands once belonged to logging companies, meaning the properties were logged for commercial purposes, rather than stewarded for their ecological benefits. Now that these lands are owned by King County, we are restoring these forests to make sure they are healthy and resilient.

Taylor Mountain: Parks began thinning 136 acres last winter and planted 50,000 trees this spring. Due to wet soil conditions, thinning was delayed for the final 30 acres. This summer, Parks will finish thinning those last 30 acres. Taylor Mountain Forest is a working forest certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. There will be some trail closures during this work.
Contact: Kelly Heintz, Program/Project Manager, 206-477-6478

Ravensdale Retreat Natural Area: Parks will thin 75 acres of forest this summer at the Ravensdale Retreat Natural Area, followed by planting 800 trees this winter. The natural area will be closed to public access for up to five weeks while this work is in progress.
Contact: Kelly Heintz, Program/Project Manager, 206-477-6478

Sugarloaf Mountain Forest: This fall, Parks will thin approximately 70 acres at Sugarloaf Mountain Forest. Instead of selling the thinned trees, Parks will “drop and leave” the felled trees on site to provide habitat for wildlife and foster a healthier forest ecology. There is no public access to Sugarloaf Mountain, so there are no expected impacts on recreation.
Contact: Daphne Payne, Program/Project Manager, 206-477-3391

Bong Santo Domingo

July Local Services days on Vashon

Bong Santo Domingo from the King County Department of Local Services will be on Vashon Island on the following Tuesdays: July 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for customer service. For more information, contact him by email or call 206-351-8071.

Bear Creek/Sammamish area community news

2019 Music in the Park lineup

The Upper Bear Creek Community Council will sponsor Music in the Park 2019 at Cottage Lake Park on Thursday evenings starting July 11.

All music starts at 7 p.m.

July 11 — Pushing Midnight — Genre-busting cover band
July 18 — Stillwater Hill — Bluegrass and traditional acoustic
July 25 — Michele D'Amour and the Love Dealers — Jazz and blues
Aug. 1 — 85th Street Big Band— 30s & 40s swing

Learn more

Local Services day in Woodinville

Marissa Alegria of the King County Local Services Community Service Areas program will be available to meet with community members on Tuesday, July 2 at the Woodinville Library between 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. For more information, please e-mail Marissa.

Green Valley/Lake Holm Association news

Lones Levee and Soos Creek visits

Josh Kahan, Department of Natural Resources and Parks’ Green River Basin Steward and Project Manager; David Daw, Department of Local Services' External Relations Manager; and Green Valley/Lake Holm Association members met on June 12 near the Green River’s Lones Levee to learn about its recently-designed reconstruction.

Josh explained the time-sensitive need to maintain erosion protection for agricultural lands and private farms and residences and to protect and greatly increase habitat for varied species of salmon. The group also visited Soos Creek, discussing the need for ongoing management and preservation of its forest ecosystem and wildlife habitat. The association members enjoyed and  appreciated the information and time given us by both of these staff members.

Learn more about the Lones Levee plan

Lones Levee visit

Upcoming community meetings

Community Alliance to Reach Out and Engage

Monday, July 22, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Lord of Life Lutheran Church
12819 160th Avenue SE

See website for the latest information and to confirm meetings.

Enumclaw Plateau Community Association

No meeting scheduled for July.

For information, please visit the website.

Fall City Community Association

No meeting scheduled for July.

The Fall City Community Association promotes building of community, proactively communicates on local issues, and takes action on selected issues that affect the Fall City community. Open to the public. For more information, email Ashley Glennon

Four Creeks Unincorporated Area Council

Tuesday, July 9, 7-9 p.m.
Eastside Fire & Rescue Station 78
20720 SE May Valley Road

Visit the website for the latest information and to confirm meeting dates and locations.

Greater Maple Valley Unincorporated Area Council

Monthly meeting
Monday, July 1, 7-9:30 p.m.
Maple Valley Fire Station
Southeast corner of SE 231st Street and SR-169 intersection

Visit the website for the latest information and to confirm meetings.

Green Valley/Lake Holm Association Meeting

Wednesday, July 31, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Fire District 44, Station 95
32316 148th Avenue SE

Regular meeting agenda items include committee updates on transportation, environmental, and safety issues. Visit the association on Facebook or Twitter or send email for more information.

North Highline Unincorporated Area Council

No meetings scheduled for July or August.

Meetings are open to the public. Monthly meeting of all-volunteer neighborhood based community organization. For more information, email Liz Giba.

Skyway Solutions Community Development Association

Monday, July 8, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
13470 Martin Luther King Jr. Way S

Open to the public. Skyway Solutions is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in unincorporated Skyway. For more info call 206-706-6400.

Upper Bear Creek Community Council

No meeting scheduled for July.

Visit the website or Facebook page for the latest information and to confirm meetings.

West Hill Community Association Board Meeting

Wednesday, July 10, 7-9 p.m.
King County Fire District 20
12424 76th Avenue S

Board meetings are open to the public and often feature guest speakers as well as community reports and information from a variety of local organizations. For more information, visit the website or send email to contact@mywesthill.org.

Contact King County Local Services

Unincorporated Area Community News is published monthly by the King County Department of Local Services. Please direct questions or comments to Anna Clemenger, anna.clemenger@kingcounty.gov or 206-477-3839.

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