November 2020 Unincorporated Area Community News

Unincorporated Area Community News - King County Local Services

November 2020

Are you ready for winter weather?

cars on a snowy road

Remember Snowmageddon? We don’t see that every winter here in the Pacific Northwest, but we do get snow, and we often see heavy rains, freezing temperatures and high winds. Get yourself, your family and your home ready now.

Preparedness can be as easy as following a checklist. Here are easy-to-follow steps, created to support your personal winter preparedness.

Freezing Temps & Snow Checklist
High Winds Checklist
Heavy Rains Checklist
Home Maintenance Checklist
Winter Weather Driving Checklist

To see these checklists in additional languages, visit

King County Local Services

Apply by Nov. 16 for a 2021 CSA Grant

graphic:  tree of hands

King County offers Community Engagement Grants each year to fund projects that offer residents in the county's unincorporated areas opportunities to participate and be more connected in their communities.

Funded projects must demonstrate how their benefits are accessible to all residents regardless of race, income, or language spoken. These funds may not be used for political activities.

For more information and application materials, visit the Community Service Areas website


Businesses in unincorporated King County can get free technical assistance and coaching through the end of this year


Did you know you can get help applying for grant funds or dealing with other business issues from King County's Small Business Coaching and Technical Assistance program?

Visit for more information (available in English plus Amharic, Chinese, Khmer, Korean, Somali, Spanish, Tigrinya, and Vietnamese).

Or you can call 206-331-3275 and leave a voicemail with your contact information, the type of assistance you're requesting, and the language you prefer to speak (if not English). A technical services coach will call you back within two business days. Alternatively, you can fill out and submit the Technical Assistance/Coaching Request Form under "Coaching" on the King County Small Business Assistance web page (linked above).

Road Services

Flaming Geyser Park Bridge in southeast King County gets a deep clean

Flaming Geyser Park Bridge montage

Flaming Geyser State Park, a gem in southeast King County, is only accessible by King County’s Flaming Geyser State Park Bridge. The bridge, built in 1991, was in need of a deep clean and thorough repair.

Between July and October, Road Services crews sandblasted rusty sections of the bridge, resealed joints, replaced bolts and repainted. Paint keeps rainwater out and prevents rust. The other work keeps the bridge in good working order so next summer, when COVID-19 is hopefully behind us, we can get back to the park for big gatherings and fun in the Green River.


Reducing run-off-the-road crashes in northeast King County

Many of the roads King County manages are winding, two-lane roads—like NE Lake Joy Road in northeast King County (north of Carnation), where too many drivers go too fast, slide off the road, and end up in nearby Mary's Pond.

In October, Road Services improved old guardrail and added new guardrail on NE Lake Joy Road and more than a dozen others to reduce run-off-the-road crashes. In 2018, Road Services used a new anti-skid High Friction Surface Treatment on NE Lake Joy Road to increase traction on the curve by Mary's Pond. Together, the surface treatment and improved guardrail and are making this curve significantly safer.

Road Services will continue installing guardrail in areas with high accident rates, and have already identified 16 places—from Vashon Island to Black Diamond—to receive the High Friction Surface treatment in the future.

Sidewalk repairs in White Center

Before and after photos of sidewalk

In White Center, cracked and heaving sidewalks on SW 107th Street between 18th Avenue SW and 22nd Avenue SW made it difficult for residents with limited mobility to move around the neighborhood.

In October, crews pulled up old sections of sidewalk and replaced them with new, level concrete. Road Services expects to do a bit more work before fall rains set in in mid-November.


Crew works to build a new culvert

SE King County’s Fairwood neighborhood has a new culvert

King County Road Services declared substantial completion on one of its largest infrastructure projects of 2020 at 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 30 when they reopened 162nd Avenue SE at SE 166th Court to traffic.

A large new culvert now carries Madsen Creek underneath East Renton’s Fairwood neighborhood. A big thanks to residents who were so patient during the work.

The road was completely closed for a little more than two months. In November, crews will restore the area with more than 100 native trees and bushes. Learn more and see photos on the project website.


24/7 Road Helpline

Call Road Services for help with road maintenance and traffic safety issues in unincorporated King County (like downed stop signs, traffic signals that aren't working, or trees over the roadway) — 24 hours a day: 206-477-8100 or toll-free at 1-800-KC-ROADS, or send email.

You can also visit the King County Road Services website or follow Road Services on Twitter @kcroads.

New campaign to support and protect animals in your community

Support and protect animals - license your pet

Regional Animal Services of King County (RASKC) kicked off its new “Support Animals” pet licensing campaign in October. The campaign promotes the many community services that the RASKC team offers as first responders (a few are listed below), and the important role that licensing plays in funding these efforts.

► Animal Control Officers respond to requests for service in our community every day, return lost pets, and are available 24/7 for animal control emergencies.

► Shelter staff provide pet care 365 days a year, plus thousands of pet adoptions and life-saving veterinary care.

► RASKC and other collaborating animal shelter partners provide free pet food at local distribution sites for area residents in need.

RASKC looks forward to seeing more pet owners purchase licenses, protecting their pets and helping make a difference for people and animals in their communities!

Public Health

COVID-19 update

Drive-through COVID testing

King County has launched free, fast COVID testing sites in South King County in Federal Way, Auburn, Renton, and Tukwila. Learn more about these and many other COVID resources at

Staying home is still safest—Maintaining the safety principles that led to early success against the outbreak has never been more important. These include practicing physical distancing of 6 feet or more, minimizing contact with others outside the home, frequent hand washing or use of hand sanitizer, use of cloth face coverings in public, and avoiding group gatherings and poorly ventilated spaces.

COVID-19 resources

Public Health-Seattle & King County
Website | News and BlogFacebook | Twitter

Washington State Department of Health
Website | FacebookTwitter

U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Website | Twitter

----- COVID-19 Call Centers -----

Medical questions related to COVID-19
206-477-3977 (8 a.m. to 7 p.m.)

Non-medical questions about COVID-19, including compliance and business issues
King County COVID-19 Business and Community Information Line
206-296-1608 (Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)

General questions about COVID-19 in Washington State
Washington State Novel Coronavirus Call Center

Shellfish harvesting can resume on Vashon Island's Spring Beach after a unified effort stopped pollution


Puget Sound and Vashon Island beaches are cleaner today thanks to an effort led by Public Health’s Environmental Health Services Division. 

The Washington State Department of Health has upgraded 57 acres of shellfish harvesting beds at the Spring Beach community of Vashon Island, the result of significant investments by property owners and years of extensive work to develop a wastewater treatment solution.

For decades, sewage from 12 homes in the Spring Beach community was flowing through a single discharge pipe directly into Puget Sound, polluting the water and causing health risks, and disrupting shellfish harvesting by Tribes that is protected by Treaty rights. 

Environmental Health Services staff coordinated a multi-department effort to work with the property owners to install individual on-site sewage systems and create a community on-site sewage system.

Learn more on the Public Health Insider blog (also available in Spanish | Español)

Natural Resources and Parks

County seeks input through Nov. 9 on Fall City Floodplain Restoration Project

Fall City floodplain graphic

You can visit an online open house for King County’s Fall City Floodplain Restoration Project on the Snoqualmie River through Nov. 9. Community members are invited to provide feedback on the project’s 30% design, timeline, goals, and benefits. This project, formerly known as the Haffner-Barfuse project, will reconnect the floodplain and restore native plants to this historically productive area for salmon. The project website offers more information and a link to sign up for project updates.

Work begins on a major Cedar River restoration project

Cedar River map

King County and partners have started a major restoration project along the Cedar River that will reduce flood risks, improve habitat for Chinook salmon, and provide sustenance to southern resident orcas.

The 52-acre project will restore a mile-long portion of the river in South King County to its natural state, creating slow-water, shallow habitat that is ideal for native Chinook salmon. It will build on the progress that partners have made to protect people, homes, and infrastructure from flood risks along the the river that flows from the Cascades to the southern tip of Lake Washington.

“We are steadily restoring the Cedar River toward its natural state,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Our successful restoration projects upstream provide a model for a unified effort, guided by science to achieve multiple benefits for all living things that call King County home.”

Read the Oct. 5 news release | Visit the project website

Apply for a RainWise Outreach Grant through Nov. 15

$240,000 in outreach grants available—help your neighbors and improve our region’s water quality

Rainwise art

RainWise is a King County Wastewater Treatment Division effort to address combined sewer overflows and stormwater pollution by offering rebates to private property owners for the installation of rain gardens and cisterns. This program is a team effort with Seattle Public Utilities.

The RainWise Outreach Grant Program is seeking talented organizations to submit proposals that help accomplish goals in the five program areas below:

1. Embed equity and social justice in RainWise outreach and program delivery

2. Provide innovative and effective virtual engagement in the time of COVID

3. Conduct outreach, marketing, and customer support to interested residential property owners in eligible King County RainWise basins

4. Execute outreach, marketing and customer support to RainWise Big Roof property owners in King County RainWise basins

5. Develop resources and provide support for Green Stormwater Infrastructure education and job training.

Grant applications will be accepted through Nov. 15, 2020.

Learn more about RainWise on the King County website.

Remember: Salmon SEEson lasts through November

Salmon underwater

The best time to view salmon as they return to our rivers and streams is before the end of November.

Make sure to check out a site near you! The 14th annual Salmon SEEson program provides information on virtual and self-guided viewing locations around King County.

This is a great opportunity to get outside safely, following public health guidelines. The Salmon SEEson website highlights resources including curriculum materials, online learning programs, videos, and coloring workbooks so you can learn more about salmon at home.

Photo courtesy of Craig Barbaccia, taken where the Tolt Pipeline Trail crosses Cottage Lake Creek.

Parks Land Management information sessions

King County Parks stewards 205 parks, 175 miles of regional trails, and 32,000 acres of open space. Learn about upcoming changes to how they manage private uses on King County Parks’ public land, such as crossing and utility access. Parks is hosting three virtual information sessions during the week of Nov 9. Visit for more information and to register to attend an info session.

No parking at Big Tree Ridge Trailhead 

Big Tree Ridge Trailhead, on the east side of Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, will be closed to parking until the trailhead is complete. King County Parks expects to begin construction on the new trailhead next summer. Please do not park on neighboring streets or in nearby residential areas. Consider parking at another Cougar Mountain trailhead (find one on this map).

Questions? Contact Kelly Heintz, Natural Resource Land Planner, at or 206-477-6478. 

Executive Services

Comment on Airport Master Plan update by Nov. 30

Close-up of jet at King County International Airport

King County International Airport is asking for public input to help shape the airport’s future. The airport is updating its master plan to meet Federal Aviation Administration requirements.

You can learn more about the master plan at, and watch videos that summarize the master plan, project phasing, and environmental project review.

Send your feedback about the master plan update by any of the following methods:

Community & Human Services

New funding for behavioral health services in rural King County

Graphic showing hands and tree

A new funding opportunity is available to increase access to behavioral health services in rural and unincorporated parts of King County, by meeting community members “where they are” – both physically and in their recovery journeys.

Each funded program should be designed to respect and support the rural community it serves, with intended outcomes that match the community’s priorities. These grants are meant to support local community-based organizations, small organizations, and grassroots coalitions to address community-identified needs that relate to behavioral health prevention, intervention, treatment, recovery, or service access in rural unincorporated King County.

The grants will be funded through the county’s MIDD Behavioral Health Sales Tax Fund.

Learn more and find a link to apply at the Department of Community & Human Services blog post.

Rural Area news

Unincorporated Area Councils/Associations & Organizations

Countywide Planning Policies seminar

On Sept. 17, members of Rural Area unincorporated area councils and associations attended a seminar on the Countywide Planning Policies, given by Karen Wolf, senior policy analyst and staff contact to the Growth Management Planning Council, and King County Demographer Rebeccah Maskin. The policies, currently undergoing an update, serve as the guiding principles and policies for all comprehensive planning in King County (County, City, and Special-Purpose District), as well as county and city zoning codes. The seminar reviewed the policies and the ongoing update, and included a robust question/answer period. The presentation charts are posted on the Greater maple Valley Unincorporated Area Council website.

Greater Maple Valley Unincorporated Area Council

Rebuttal on proposed asphalt facility

On Sept. 12, the Greater Maple Valley Unincorporated Area Council (GMVUAC) provided a detailed point-by-point rebuttal to Lakeside Industries’ Response to Public Comment and to King County Permitting's Nov. 18, 2019 Comment Letter, seeking a substantial amount of additional information.

Lakeside Industries proposes to move its asphalt facility from Covington, inside the Urban Growth Area, to a site along the Cedar River in the Rural Area. You can read the rebuttal or find more details on the proposed asphalt facility on the council’s website.

Community organizations

NOTE: Although public meetings have been canceled, here's a list of community councils and associations that serve King County's unincorporated Community Service Areas, including their usual (or most recent) meeting sites and contact information where applicable.

:: Community Alliance to Reach Out and Engage

Lord of Life Lutheran Church
12819 160th Avenue SE, Renton

See blog for the latest information and to confirm meetings.

:: Enumclaw Plateau Community Association

Headsworks Brewing
1110 Marshall Avenue, Enumclaw

Newly formed community association. Monthly meetings are open to the public, and may feature guest speakers in addition to community reports and information from a variety of local organizations. For more information contact Nancy Merrill.

:: Fall City Community Association

Fall City Fire Station
4301 334th Place SE, Fall City

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, visit or email Angela Donaldson

:: Four Creeks Unincorporated Area Council

Eastside Fire & Rescue Station 78
20720 SE May Valley Road, Issaquah

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

:: Greater Maple Valley Unincorporated Area Council

Monday, Nov. 2, 7-9:30 p.m.—Zoom virtual meeting
Guest speaker will be Tahoma School District Superintendent Mike Hanson.

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

:: Green Valley/Lake Holm Association Meeting

Advocates for citizens who live in unincorporated southeast King County. Primary goals are to maintain the community’s unique historic, agricultural, and rural character; protect the environment, and sustain quality of life in the area. Engages regularly with local governments to address concerns and influence policies on topics of mutual interest, such as growth and development, transportation, public safety, and flood control. For updates and information, visit their website and/or Facebook page.

:: Skywest Tool Library

Skyway Water and Sewer office
6723 S 124th Street, Seattle

Join the SkyWest Tool Library Monthly Meeting to learn more about helping to start a new tool library in Skyway. The purpose of the library will be to share ideas, teach, learn, and borrow tools and more. Contact the library on Facebook.

:: North Highline Unincorporated Area Council

North Highline Fire District
1243 SW 112th Street, White Center
(Parking and entrance are in the back of the station)

Monthly board meetings are open to the public and often feature guest speakers in addition to community reports and information from local organizations. For more information, email Liz Giba.

:: Upper Bear Creek Community Council

Woodinville Library
17105 Avondale Road NE, Woodinville

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

:: Vashon Chamber of Commerce First Tuesday Networking

Vashon Chamber of Commerce
17141 Vashon Highway SW, Vashon

Contact: Jim Marsh at 206-463-6217 or

:: Vashon-Maury Island Community Council

Regular virtual meetings on third Mondays, 7-9 p.m.
Visit the website for info on how to attend, or see the Facebook page.

:: West Hill Community Association

Skyway Fire District 20
12424 76th Avenue S, Seattle

The organization's website now features a page with information about businesses and restaurants in the community that are still operating during the Governor's "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" order.

Monthly board meetings are open to the public and often feature guest speakers as well as community reports and information from local organizations. For more information, visit the website or send emailLearn more on Facebook.

Director’s corner

John Taylor, King County Local Services director

King County Local Services recently wrapped up our fall round of Community Service Area town-hall meetings—an annual event where King County elected officials and senior county staff members meet with community members. We do this every year because accountability to the public is one of the core principles underpinning the work we do in the community. This year, because of the restrictions imposed by Covid-19, we used Zoom to hold the meetings virtually.   

During our Oct. 6 town hall for Skyway/West Hill, we experienced a coordinated Zoom attack intended to disrupt the meeting with racist, hateful, and vile statements and images. We swiftly removed the individuals involved from the virtual meeting, and after the meeting was over we tightened our meeting security protocols for future events. The Oct. 6 incident is being investigated by the King County Sheriff’s Office.

There is no place in our community for the type of messages and images that our participants and staff members were subjected to during this meeting. This event serves as a stark reminder of some of the profound divisions we are seeing within our communities today. Local government becomes even more critical in times of great societal upheaval and division, and King County Local Service stands with everyone in the community as a voice for reason and calm. We are committed to working with our residents to keep everyone in the community safe and secure.

Best wishes and have a safe and happy Halloween.

Director’s Corner is a column from John Taylor, the director of King County Local Services.To contact John, email or call 206-477-3800 (Relay 711; language interpreters available).