March 31 COVID-19 Special Edition: Small Business Relief Fund Application Period Opens April 1, Message from Councilmembers, Play Earth Month Bingo, Information on Rent Assistance and Other Resources, Update from Public Health - Seattle & King County, and More!

View as a webpage

this week in kirkland

March 31, 2020

city of kirkland washington

City Mails Postcard to Connect Residents with Needed Services During Pandemic

The City of Kirkland has mailed an informational postcard to each residential address in Kirkland to connect residents who are homebound with needed services. 

The postcard provides three phone numbers with important information and resources that residents who are homebound may need:

  • 1-800-525-0127 – Washington State Department of Health COVID-19 Call Center
  • 1-866-427-4747 – 24-Hour Crisis Line
  • 1-425-207-4777 – Sound Generations Call Center for people unable to get food

“This is a challenging and unique time for Kirkland and for communities around the world,” said Mayor Penny Sweet.  “The City is doing everything it can to proactively connect those in our community who might need support with programs and services that can support them.”

The City of Kirkland has partnered with Sound Generations to enhance call center capabilities to field calls for residents in need of food.  The English text of the postcard is also translated into Spanish, Chinese (simplified), and Russian. Kirkland residents should anticipate receiving the postcard sometime during the week of March 30, 2020.

“We know there are many Kirkland residents that are not connected to the City’s communications through our email newsletter or social media,” said Mayor Sweet.  “This is our way of trying to make sure that everyone knows there are resources in the community if they need them, so that no one falls through the cracks.  We’re all in this together, and we need to be looking out for each during this challenging time.”

The postcard also contains a brief message from the City Council that reads: “The City wants to connect you with needed services during this challenging time of COVID-19.  Please try to stay healthy by washing your hands frequently and staying away from groups of people.  If you need help or have questions about what to do, please use the phone numbers on this card.”

Finally, the postcard includes a link to an informational webpage on the City’s website that compiles resources for Kirkland residents impacted by COVID-19.  The informational page includes links to programs and services for rental assistance, healthcare resources, and more.  View the resident resource page on the City’s website:

Post card image

Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund Accepting Applications Beginning April 1 through April 7

The Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund (Relief Fund) will begin accepting applications from eligible Kirkland-based small businesses and small not-for-profits on April 1, 2020, at 9 a.m. The application period will close at 5 p.m. April 7. Applications will be accepted online only, and the application form can be found here:

The City of Kirkland, the Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce (Chamber), and Banner Bank’s Kirkland branch collaborated to create the Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund to provide immediate grants to qualifying small businesses and small not-for-profits in Kirkland impacted by COVID-19. The Relief Fund received initial seed funding of $250,000 from, Google’s philanthropic arm, and is open to additional contributions from any interested individuals and organizations to be used in later rounds of funding.

The Relief Fund is open to all qualifying applicants; applicants do not need to be Chamber members to apply. The Chamber will act as the fiscal agent for the Relief Fund and will manage all contributions. A committee comprised of members from the Chamber, Banner Bank, and other business leaders will review all applications and make all decisions regarding dispersal of grant funding.

The following details and parameters define the Relief Fund’s initial round:

  • $250,000 in available funds, contributed by
  • Applications accepted: April 1 through April 7, 2020
  • Total number of grant recipients will be capped at 250
  • Minimum grant award: $1,000
  • Maximum grant award: $5,000
  • Equal distribution of funds among qualifying recipients

Businesses meeting the following criteria are eligible to apply:

  • “Brick and Mortar” commercial businesses or small not-for-profits serving customers and constituents in a premise that is open to the general public
  • Current business license number with the City of Kirkland
  • Demonstrated negative financial impact from COVID-19
  • 25 or fewer FTE (full time equivalent) employees
  • Business is open, or intends to re-open after restrictions lift

“COVID-19 is causing major disruptions to Kirkland and to communities around the world,” said Deputy Mayor Jay Arnold. “This Relief Fund is a local effort to support our local small businesses and not-for-profits during this challenging time. I encourage all organizations who meet the criteria to apply to get needed support.”

The goal of the Relief Fund is to provide immediate financial relief to Kirkland’s hardest-hit small businesses and not-for-profits in the form of unrestricted grants to support rent, employee salaries, and operating costs as a stop-gap relief pending the release and distribution of anticipated federal and state aid. It is expected that the Relief Fund will disperse grants to applicants in successive funding rounds, as contributions allow.

In addition to the immediate funding from the Relief Fund, the federal government recently passed a comprehensive package, the CARES Act, that is anticipated to support Kirkland businesses in the form of loans (forgivable in some instances), extended unemployment programs, and more. City staff will continue to track and provide links to relevant programs on the City’s website:

Additional resources for Kirkland businesses include the U.S. Small Business Administration, which is offering low-interest federal disaster loans to Washington small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of COVID-19. Applicants may apply online and receive additional disaster assistance information at Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email

For more information, including details on criteria and contributing to the fund, please visit:

Relief Fund Grant image

Celebrate Earth Month from Home by Joining Kirkland’s Earth Month Bingo Game

Kirkland Conserves logo

Many people in Kirkland are staying home right now, and we know that many of you are looking for things to do and ways to help our community. This April brings the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, and there are still many ways to help our environment even while you are staying home. The City’s environmental teams have picked out twenty-four things that you can do to help the earth during April while staying home or socially distant in your neighborhood or a local park. Join in to celebrate Earth Month by participating in our community Earth Month Bingo game! As a thank you for participating, everyone who completes a BINGO can be entered in a prize drawing for a gift certificate to one of Kirkland’s environmentally-friendly restaurants.

Learn more about how to participate and download your Earth Month Bingo Card on our Earth Month webpage.

We’d love to see your progress throughout the month! Tag the City’s account if you share pictures of any of your actions on Instagram, and use the hashtag #earthmonthkirkland so we can all connect remotely and see the great things our neighbors are doing to help the planet during April.

Earth Month Bingo card

Message from your Councilmembers

In the video below, the Kirkland City Council shares the importance of staying home to help flatten the curve of COVID-19. 

Councilmember video about the importance of staying home

Information on Rent Assistance

Resources for rent

Finding ways to make rent, mortgage and utility payments during the COVID-19 pandemic can pose a significant challenge for those out of work, but there are resources that can help.

On March 18, Gov. Inslee announced a 30-day, statewide moratorium on residential evictions. This moratorium temporarily halts residential evictions, helping to ensure that Washington residents aren’t displaced from their homes during the COVID-19 epidemic.

More about this proclamation can be found on the Governor’s website.

Further, the Governor’s March 18 announcement called on public utilities in Washington state to suspend disconnections for nonpayment during this emergency and to waive late fees for out of work customers. Information on Puget Sound Energy’s response to COVID-19 can be found on its website.    

Although service organizations have had to adjust to meet social distancing guidelines and comply with the requirements of Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order, resources remain available for those in need. Hopelink continues to provide food, case management and other services either online or over the phone. United Way of King County’s COVID-19 resource library is available on its website. Catholic Community Services can help with addiction recovery, mental health, housing and more.

For additional information and resources, visit the City of Kirkland Resident Resource webpage.

March 30 Update from Public Health - Seattle & King County

Public health logo

Staying home and limiting contact with others is helping slow the spread of COVID-19, and those limits must continue in order to reduce the impact of the outbreak. Public Health—Seattle & King County announced 171 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, March 30, bringing the official case count in King County to 2,330. In addition, nine new deaths were reported, bringing the total of deaths in King County to 150.

Staying home and limiting contact with others is helping, according to new report

A collective commitment to stay home and limit person-to-person contact appears to be making a difference in slowing the spread of COVID-19 in King County, but those measures need to continue, according to two new reports by the Bellevue-based Institute for Disease Modeling (IDM), which were released in partnership with Public Health—Seattle & King County.

Continuing the limits on contacts is essential in order to both decrease and delay the peak of the outbreak.

"Daily life has been turned upside down, and I know people are anxious, seeing days pass without a paycheck, not knowing when kids will get back to school. The bit of good news in today’s IDM report should strengthen our resolve to do everything we can to keep people safe, and to get through this crisis together,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine.

Two reports from IDM analyze the overall “mobility” of people in King County, before and after a series of physical distancing policies were announced – and use a model to show the impact on virus transmission. These polices began at the county level and culminated in the statewide “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order. Using anonymized mobility data, results from one report showed reductions in mobility beginning in early March. Then, in a second report, IDM researchers looked to see if these reductions in mobility could be related to reductions in COVID-19 transmission. They found that a measure of transmission, called the effective reproductive number, dropped by about half between late February and March 18.

"We are seeing a positive effect from the social distancing and other measures we’ve put in place, although significant numbers of cases and deaths continue to occur,” said Dr. Jeff Duchin, Health Officer for Public Health—Seattle & King County. “No one should take these findings as an indication to relax our social distancing strategy. The threat of a rebound that could overwhelm the healthcare system remains and will remain for the foreseeable future if we let up too soon.”

More information is available on the Public Health Insider blog.

For additional information about COVID-19 and the response in King County, be sure to check our webpage:

Case updates

Public Health is reporting the following confirmed cases and deaths due to COVID-19 through 11:59 p.m. on 3/29/20.

  • 2330 confirmed positive cases (up 171 from yesterday)
  • 150 confirmed deaths (up 9 from yesterday)

Important Note: With the launch of a data dashboard (, Public Health will no longer be listing individual deaths by age and gender in our News Release. Detailed information about demographics of those who died from COVID-19 is available on the dashboard. Be sure to click the button to filter by “positive results only” to see age and gender of deaths.

Isolation and quarantine facilities update

Isolation and quarantine is a proven public health practice for reducing the spread of disease. Examples of people who may need this assistance include people who cannot safely isolate from a family member who is elderly or medically fragile, or people experiencing homelessness. Individuals can only be placed into the King County sites after a health professional with Public Health—Seattle & King County has determined that they need isolation or quarantine.

Fifteen people are currently staying in King County isolation and quarantine facilities. A third site, located in Issaquah, opened over the weekend.

The number of people at King County's isolation and quarantine sites will be included in regular updates provided by Public Health. No other identifying or personal information will be provided.

Cancelled Events

Because physical distancing is critical to stopping the spread of COVID-19, the following events are cancelled:

StyroFest: Styrofoam + Electronics Recycling Event
9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 4 
Kirkland Maintenance Center
For more information, visit the Kirkland Calendar

KU Kids at Kirkland Urban
10 a.m. to noon Saturday, April 11
The Fountain Court at Kirkland Urban
For more information, visit:  

The Kiwanis Club of Kirkland's 46th Annual Easter Egg Hunt
1:30 p.m. Sunday, April 12 
Peter Kirk Park
For more information, visit:  

The Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce
All Chamber events through the month of April are cancelled
For more information, visit:

Kirkland Performance Center
All Kirkland Performance Center shows through April 30 are postponed
For more information, visit: