April 13 COVID-19 Special Edition: Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund Provides Support to 250 Businesses, Hopelink Hosts Food Drive, Update from Public Health - Seattle & King County, Tips for Securing Your Business from KPD, Construction Impacts on Totem Lake Boulevard, and More!

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this week in kirkland

April 13, 2020

city of kirkland washington

Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund Provides Financial Support to 250 Kirkland Businesses

Relief Fund Image

Checks are in the mail to 250 Kirkland small businesses that will each receive a $1000 grant from the Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund.

The City of Kirkland, the Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce, and the Kirkland branch of Banner Bank partnered to create the Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund to provide immediate grants to qualifying small businesses and small nonprofits in Kirkland impacted by COVID-19. The Relief Fund received initial seed funding of $250,000 from Google.org, Google’s philanthropic arm.

The Chamber is acting as the fiscal agent for the Relief Fund and is managing all contributions. A committee comprised of members from the Chamber and Banner Bank reviewed all applications. All information that was considered in the selection of grant recipients came from answers provided on the application form.

Businesses qualified for fund consideration by having a Kirkland business license, being a “brick and mortar” business, and having 25 or fewer employees. The review committee determined that funds should be distributed evenly to 250 qualified businesses based on objective criteria, without knowledge of business identity. One objective criterion was business need, which was determined by evaluating year-to-year first quarter reduction in gross revenues and availability of reserves.

The intention of the Kirkland Small Business Relief Fund is to offer a second round of funding if additional funds from donors becomes available. Donations can be made at https://kirklandchamber.org/relief/.

“We hope that people will continue to donate to the Small Business Relief Fund so that additional rounds of funding can be made available,” said Mayor Penny Sweet. “We know that this is a very challenging time for small business owners and their employees, and I’m so proud of what our community is doing to support each other.”

Over 700 applications for funding were received during the first round.

“The number of applications that we received was overwhelming and truly demonstrated the need that currently exists in our community,” said Samantha St. John, CEO of the Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce. “We hope to be able to offer future rounds of funding. Thank you again to Google.org for providing the seed funding for this grant program, and we hope that others will be able to join in with a contribution to support our local businesses.”

For more information, including details on contributing to the fund, please visit: https://kirklandchamber.org/relief/.

Call For Help: Hopelink Hosts Four Hour Food Drive Saturday, April 18

Hopelink image

Hopelink is committed to ensuring access to food for our most vulnerable neighbors. During the COVID-19 crisis, many who have never before needed to ask for help are turning to us for support; facing fear, uncertainty and a sudden lack of income.

To help ensure Hopelink is able to continue providing food, Hopelink will hold a 4-hour drive-through food drive at their Kirkland center on Saturday, April 18.

From noon to 4 p.m. on April 18 only, community members are invited to drive through at Hopelink Kirkland, located at 11011 120th Ave NE.

They are able to accept ONLY the following: instant oatmeal (packets only), mac and cheese, canned tuna or chicken, chili/stew, canned fruit, rice (1 or 2 pound, white or brown), peanut butter.

For more information, visit the Hopelink website

Risks of ending social distancing too early; Public Health – Seattle & King County announces 145 new cases and 7 deaths reported for April 11, 2020

Public health logo

While some initial studies suggest social distancing measures are slowing the spread of COVID-19 in King County, Public Health cautions that relaxing our social distancing strategy too soon could overwhelm the healthcare system. In addition, Public Health reported 145 new cases, bringing the official case count in King County to 4,262, and 7 new deaths, bringing the total of COVID-19 deaths in King County to 284.

Relaxing social distancing too soon could overwhelm the healthcare system

Because of our current success at distancing, today our hospitals are able to safely provide the usual level of care to the people who need it. This is also because of many major changes hospitals and healthcare systems have made to their usual operations in order to prepare to care for large numbers of COVID-19 cases.

But if we should get a dramatic spike in people who need to be hospitalized, it will badly stretch the system.

When it appears safe, Public Health will be looking at the following indicators to help inform the timing and approach for the gradual relaxing of one or more social distancing measures:

  • A steady decrease in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations for at least two weeks;
  • Healthcare system readiness, including sufficient staffing, supplies, and bed space, to be able to accommodate the increase in cases we expect to see when we loosen social distancing measures;
  • Widespread availability of rapid testing and reporting of results, beyond what is currently available, so people who are infected can take quick action to slow the spread of COVID-19;
  • Capacity to conduct widespread case and contact investigations to quickly identify people who are infected and their close contacts and help them isolate and quarantine;
  • Availability of proven COVID-19 treatments, which are currently under evaluation.

At the same time, we are sensitive to the unintended economic and social impacts from a prolonged Stay Home order. We must advocate for and provide support to those who are experiencing hardships as a result of this necessary disease control strategy.

For further details, please see the related blog post on Public Health Insider.

NOTE: Public Health Media Release schedule is changing

Starting next week, Public Health will distribute updates through a Media Release on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

NOTE: Public Health media release schedule is changing!

Starting the week of April 12 through April 18, Public Health will distribute updates through a Media Release on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

  • Exceptions will be made when important news must be distributed through a Media Release, on any day of the week.
  • Public Health publishes new information frequently through the Public Health Insider blog – please consider becoming a subscriber by choosing the option to "Follow Blog Via Email."
  • Daily totals for new cases of COVID-19 and deaths are available on the Data Dashboard webpage, which updates as soon as data are available, typically between 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

For additional information about COVID-19 and the response in King County, be sure to check our webpage: www.kingcounty.gov/covid

Everyone, even people who are young and healthy, must stay home to slow the spread of COVID-19. Each individual’s actions affect the health of our entire community, and what we do as a community protects us all. Stand Together, Stay Apart.

Case updates

Public Health—Seattle & King County is reporting the following confirmed cases and deaths due to COVID-19 through 11:59 p.m. on 4/10/20.

  • 4,262 confirmed positive cases (up 145* from yesterday)
  • 284 confirmed deaths (up 7 from yesterday)

* The "new confirmed positive cases" figure we publish each day represents all new confirmed cases reported to us through 11:59 the night prior. Some of these test results were processed on days prior but were delayed in being reported to us.

Detailed information about demographics of those who died from COVID-19 is available on the data dashboard.

Temporary changes in reporting of negative COVID-19 test results

King County's COVID-19 data dashboard is based on data provided by the Washington State Department of Health (DOH). As of April 4, 2020, DOH has temporarily stopped reporting data on negative test results. As a result, we are no longer displaying information on negative test results on our data dashboard.

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 has determined that they need isolation or quarantine.

Seventy-one people are currently staying in King County isolation and quarantine facilities.

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

Kirkland Police Department Offers Tips for Securing Your Business

The Kirkland Police Department has increased security checks at local businesses in response to community concern about a potential increase in commercial burglaries. If your business is closed in alignment with Gov. Jay Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order, make sure you remove all cash and valuables from your business for the duration of the closure. As always, please call 9-1-1 to report suspicious activity.

Crime prevention image from KPD

Closures on Totem Lake Boulevard Ongoing During Governor's "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" Order

Totem Lake Magazine

City of Kirkland contractors are working to expedite projects during Gov. Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order to capitalize on limited traffic flows in the Totem Lake region at this time and minimize later impacts on commuters. For updates and news about Totem Lake, please visit the Totem Lake information page on the City website.

The 2020 edition of Totem Lake magazine is now available! This 28-page publication includes feature stories about Totem Lake Park, the Totem Lake Connector and progress reports on 23 capital and private development projects that, together, are implementing the vision of Totem Lake as a walkable, vibrant and green urban village. 

Totem Lake Boulevard

To expedite the installation of a retaining wall along Totem Lake Boulevard, a Kirkland contractor is closing all but one of the arterial's five lanes.

As a result, commuters will have access to one of the Boulevard's southbound lanes until the end of April or until Gov. Jay Inslee ends the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” proclamation.

Marshbank Construction, the contractor, has established a detour for northbound Totem Lake Boulevard traffic.

The extra lane is allowing Marshbank’s crews to work more efficiently while they rebuild the street and install a new retaining wall that will help support the road.

Marshbank's crews are also closing two lanes along 120th Avenue Northeast and Totem Lake Way while they rebuild the sidewalk and roadway. The sidewalk on the southeast side of the road is closed as well.

For more information, visit Totem Lake Connector or Totem Lake

Cross Kirkland Corridor

To the south, the Cross Kirkland Corridor remains closed between 120th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 124th Street until April 20 while the Northshore Utility District’s contractor improves the reliability of Totem Lake’s sewer system. Using orange detour signs, Razz Construction is directing trail users around the construction site via 120th Avenue Northeast, Northeast 116th Street, and 124th Avenue Northeast.

The rest of the Cross Kirkland Corridor remains open to the public. However, the City of Kirkland is urging everyone to practice social distancing. City crews will soon add temporary signage along the Cross Kirkland Corridor to remind people who are walking, jogging, and biking to practice social distancing.

For more information, visit the Cross Kirkland Corridor webpage

108th Avenue Northeast

Drivers should continue to expect minor traffic impacts this month on 108th Avenue Northeast while a Kirkland contractor upgrades an aging water and sewer main along the north-to-south arterial.

Marshbank Construction is replacing the two systems—both more than five decades old—to increase their capacities to serve Kirkland’s growing population and to reduce the systems’ needs for maintenance.

That need is most urgent in the sewer line, which runs from Northeast 68th Street to Northeast 53rd Street. Settling soil has created a sag in the sewer line, allowing sewage to accumulate there and requiring maintenance crews to periodically flush the line.

The contractor is also replacing the water main between Northeast 68th and 60th streets.

Marshbank expects to complete the upgrades by December.

For more information, visit the project webpage

Totem Lake Spring Action Plan

Cancelled Events

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

ORCA Card Service
Wednesday, April 15, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. 
Kirkland City Hall
For more information, visit: https://www.kingcounty.gov/depts/transportation/metro/fares-orca/neighborhood-pop-up.aspx

Recycling Collection Event
Saturday, May 16, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Lake Washington Institute of Technology
11605 132nd Ave. N.E.
For more information, visit: https://www.kirklandwa.gov/depart/Public_Works/solidwaste.htm

The Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce
All Chamber events through May 21 are cancelled
For more information, visit: https://kirklandchamber.org/

Kirkland Performance Center
All Kirkland Performance Center shows through April 30 are postponed
For more information, visit: http://www.kpcenter.org