Celebrate Kirkland 4th of July Event Turns Virtual, Council Seeks Volunteers for EMS Ballot Measure Pro Con Committees, Statewide Mask Mandate Starts Friday, June 26, Provide Safer Routes to School Feedback by June 30, Toxic Algae Info, City's AAA Credit Rating Affirmed, Traffic Alerts and More!

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this week in kirkland

June 24, 2020

city of kirkland washington

Kirkland City Council Seeks Volunteers for Potential Fire and Emergency Medical Services Ballot Proposition Statement Committees

City Council

The Kirkland City Council is recruiting residents to formulate the statements that will appear in the voters’ pamphlet for and against a potential Fire and Emergency Medical Services ballot measure.

The Kirkland City Council has not yet approved a draft or final legislative action to place the ballot measure related to Fire and Emergency Medical Services on the November 3, 2020 general election ballot, but may consider doing so at their July 7 or 21 regular meetings. Given the tight timelines required by King County Elections, the City Council felt it was prudent to begin recruitment prior to any final decision.

Separate committees will prepare the statements, one committee in favor of, and one committee against, the ballot measure. Interested residents can apply online. Residents with questions should contact the Kirkland City Clerk’s Office at (425) 587-3190 or at KAnderson@kirklandwa.gov for more information on the committees and the application process. Applications will be accepted until the deadline of 4:00 p.m., Tuesday, June 30, 2020. The City Council will potentially make the committee appointments at their July 7 or 21 meeting.

The pro and con committees will consist of three members each and will prepare a “Statement For” or “Statement Against” (in addition to rebuttals of the opposing statements) to be included in the King County Local Voters’ Pamphlet for the November 3, 2020 General Election. Each statement will be limited to 200 words. Arguments will be submitted to King County Elections no later than 4:30 p.m., August 11, 2020.

Arguments prepared by the pro and con committees will be made available to the opposing committees for rebuttal after 4:30 p.m., August 12, 2020, and statements rebutting (optional) the argument made by the opposition shall be submitted no later than 4:30 p.m., August 13, 2020.

More information on the potential Fire and Emergency Medical Services ballot measure is available on the City website.

Statewide Mask Mandate Goes into Effect Friday, June 26

Face coverings image

On June 23, Washington state Secretary of Health John Wiesman announced an order that mandates the use of cloth face coverings in most public areas. The order takes effect June 26.

The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) provides information to help the public understand how to prevent the spread of COVID-19, protect their communities and comply with the order for face coverings. Additional rules from the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) apply to employers and employees.

Resources and information for employers and employees

Additional resources for the public

How to make a face covering

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do if I see someone not wearing a face covering? 

Nothing. Some people have conditions or circumstances that would make wearing a cloth face covering difficult or dangerous. Just wear your face covering and stay six feet away.  

When do I not have to wear a face covering? 

You do not need to wear a cloth face covering when you are in your own home or in your car, if you are only with people in your own household. You also do not need to wear a cloth face covering when you are exercising outdoors and you have plenty of space. It’s a good idea to keep one in your pocket, though, in case you come across other people you can’t stay six feet away from. And some people may have health conditions or circumstances that make wearing a cloth face covering difficult or dangerous.

I don’t want to make or buy a face covering. Are there other options? 

Cloth face coverings do not need to be complicated or expensive. Save medical masks and respirators for health care workers and others in high-risk settings. Easy alternative are to use a scarf or any breathable, washable fabric, and wrap it around your face so that a couple layers of fabric are completely covering your mouth and nose.

Face masks image

Deadline is June 30 for Safer Routes to School Input

Safe Routes to Schools

We need your input prioritizing a list of walk and bike improvements to make it easier and safer for children to walk and bike to the bus and school! Deadline for online input is June 30.

The walk recommendations resulted from a year-long public engagement process and engineering analysis of Kirkland’s transportation network. More than 550 suggested projects were reviewed and analyzed by both City engineering staff and an independent engineering consultant.

Which ones do you think are most important for your school/neighborhood? Anyone can vote, even if you don’t have school age children. There are three ways to provide input.

1. Neighborhood Zoom Meeting: The walk recommendations and instructions for online voting will be presented during neighborhood zoom meetings. You will have the opportunity to ask questions, get clarification on specific projects, and learn how to vote. 

2. Online: You can access information regarding Safer Routes to School Action Plans online. After June 1, you can vote for your top three walk recommendations online. The deadline is Tuesday, June 30th!!! 

3. Email or phone: Voting can be done by contacting Kari Page at KPage@kirklandwa.gov or (425) 587-3875.

You are encouraged to walk (or drive) by the projects with your school age children and vote together. Note you will be asked to pick your top three projects. Each household can only vote once. Additional information about the City’s technical prioritization criteria is available on our website

Safer Routes to School image

Toxic Algae Blooms: Causes and Additional Resources

Toxic algae

Algae are a natural, important part of a healthy lake. Some types of algae can make toxins that can harm people, pets, or wildlife. Always look out for algae blooms before you, your children, or your pets go into the water. Algae blooms can look like scums, paint spills, or flecks in the water – learn more at the Washington State Toxic Algae monitoring program webpage. When in doubt, stay out!

Toxic algae blooms can change and move quickly. The type of algae that can make toxins (called cyanobacteria) float easily and are often blown up against the shoreline. The winds can blow a lot of algae into a small area of the shoreline, which can lead to a dangerous level of toxins there. As the winds shift, algae blooms can appear and disappear quickly, and can blow from one part of the lake to another.

Because algae are important to a lake, there are no quick fixes to make toxic algae go away. Algae are the food that fish and other animals in the lake depend on, either directly or indirectly. So we don’t want to try to kill off the algae with algicides!

People can help reduce toxic algae blooms by reducing the amount of phosphorus that gets into the lake. Phosphorus is a nutrient that makes algae grow, the same way that phosphorus in garden fertilizer makes plants grow. And too much phosphorus can lead to too much algae, more than is healthy for the lake.

Everyone in Kirkland can help reduce phosphorus in Lake Washington, whether or not you live on the lake shoreline. Every stream and storm drain in the city leads eventually to Lake Washington (Lake Sammamish and the Sammamish River flow to Lake Washington, too).

  • Be careful with fertilizer. If you fertilize your lawn, use only phosphorus-free lawn fertilizer – don’t use garden fertilizer by mistake. And don’t put more fertilizer or compost on your garden than it needs.
  • Animal poop has a lot of phosphorus, so please clean up after your dog. Pick up the poop, bag it, and place it in the trash. Make sure horse or other manure doesn’t wash into streams or drains.
  • Leaves and grass clippings have phosphorus, too. Don’t let them wash down the storm drain.
  • Soil erosion is another source of phosphorus, so prevent erosion and build healthy soils in your yard.

For more ways you can help keep Lake Washington healthy, check out these resources:

S&P and Moody’s affirm City of Kirkland’s AAA credit rating for the Build America Bond Refinancing

City logo

The City of Kirkland has one again received a AAA credit rating from S&P and Moody’s credit rating agencies.

Bond ratings indicate the credit quality of the bonds being issued. AAA and Aaa are the highest quality and grade, indicating maximum safety. The rating indicates bonds with the smallest degree of investment risk and demonstrates that the obligor has an extremely strong capacity to meet its financial commitments. The City of Kirkland has held the Aaa rating from Moody’s since November 13, 2018, and the AAA rating from S&P since November 24, 2008.

“These ratings reflect the City’s continued commitment to being a responsible steward of public funds,” said Mayor Penny Sweet. “Our continued emphasis on financial sustainability will help ensure that not only do we survive the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ll be able to recover more quickly and return to being an economically thriving community.”

In their rating report, S&P had the following to say about the City of Kirkland, “We view the city as showing very strong budgetary performance, with positive general fund and total governmental fund results in the past three audited years. Although the city will wrestle with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and recession on revenue and operations, we believe that the city's policies and practices have positioned it well to navigate what is likely to be near-term budgetary stress. The city has maintained a trend of very strong available reserves that we believe it will sustain, despite a challenging revenue environment.”

Moody’s made similar positive statements in their report, “The Aaa issuer and GOLT ratings are driven by the city's strong financial management that has led to healthy reserves that will protect the city against expected revenue declines in the near term. Also considered were the city's modest debt burden and manageable pension liabilities. We regard the coronavirus outbreak as a social risk under our ESG framework, given the substantial implications for public health and safety. Despite being one of the first places to experience an outbreak in the United States, the City of Kirkland has put itself in a great position to absorb the negative impacts of the outbreak and government response. The stable outlook reflects our expectation that the city will maintain its strong financial profile despite the projected revenue declines from the coronavirus pandemic. The stable outlook also reflects our anticipation that after some near-term slowing that the city's local economy will return to growth in the long-run.”

More information on the City’s finances is available on the City website.

Celebrate Kirkland 4th of July Event Turns Virtual!

Celebrate Kirkland image

For over 20 years, “Celebrate Kirkland” has brought the community together on the 4th of July with a vibrant parade, community picnic, and an epic firework display over Marina Park. While this year might look a little different due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and restrictions on large gatherings, the essence of Celebrate Kirkland remains the same:

It’s a celebration by the community, for the community.  

Please join the City, the Celebrate Kirkland Leadership Team, and the Kirkland Downtown Association for the first ever virtual Celebrate Kirkland 4th of July event! This custom, star-spangled Independence Day extravaganza kicks off at noon on Saturday, July 4 on the City Facebook page, the Kirkland Television YouTube channel, the Kirkland Granicus Stream, Comcast Cable Channel 21 and Ziply Cable Channel 31, so choose your favorite viewing platform and prepare for an uplifting video experience starring the best Kirkland has to offer.

Commentary is provided by Mayor and Celebrate Kirkland founder Penny Sweet, and longtime community advocate, Cow and Coyote decorator and avid Sea Hawker, Terri Fletcher. Both are Celebrate Kirkland veterans, serving on the leadership team since 1999 and 2001, respectively.

You never know who or what you might see as past years of Celebrate Kirkland parade festivities are showcased in a dynamic, action-packed video premier highlighting the heart and soul of Celebrate Kirkland. This patriotic feature lets freedom ring as it honors our veterans and shines a spotlight on the City’s neighborhood associations, arts commissioners, elected officials, service organizations, classic car and hot rod enthusiasts, business leaders, and most of all, our amazing community members.

It's three years of parade fun neatly melded into a single compilation meant to embody the spirit of the holiday in all its red, white and blue glory.

And because no 4th of July is complete without a spectacular display of fireworks, return to the City Facebook page at 10 p.m. for the 2020 virtual fireworks show! The online display features dazzling pyrotechnics from years past to help brighten your screens and bring the 4th of July holiday to life.

Please remember, as guided by Kirkland Municipal Code Chapter 11.60, the sale, possession and discharge of personal fireworks are prohibited in Kirkland city limits. Kirkland’s fireworks ban went into effect in 1999 to help eliminate property damage, injury, and fires, and to protect the natural beauty of our region. In general, public fireworks displays are allowed when properly permitted by the Kirkland Fire Department, but this year’s traditional 4th of July display is cancelled for the health and safety of our community. Call the Kirkland Fire Prevention Bureau at (425) 587-3650, or check out the below video for more information.

2020 4th of July video image

Please Take the Eastside Arts Audience Participation Survey

Do you participate or take classes in the arts? How do you feel about returning to a theatre or continuing virtual learning? The City of Bellevue, in partnership with the Eastside Arts & Culture Coalition and the Cities of Issaquah, Kirkland, Redmond, and Renton, has launched a survey of arts and cultural audiences. This survey will help arts organizations and Eastside cities plan for future arts, cultural and educational experiences. The survey should take roughly five to eight minutes and is open through July 10 and offered in seven languages - Chinese, English, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese. See below for links.

For questions about how to fill out the survey or about the survey, please reach out to the Manette Stamm at the City of Bellevue, mstamm@bellevuewa.gov.

Arts and Culture Participation Audience Survey - English

藝術與文化觀眾參與度調查 - Chinese (Traditional)

芸術的、文化的、教育的活動への参加に関するアンケート - Japanese

예술과 문화 관객 참여 설문조사 - Korean

Опрос публики об участии в художественно-культурных мероприятиях -Russian

Encuesta de participación de la audiencia en las artes y la cultura - Spanish

Khảo Sát về Sự Tham Gia của Khán Giả Nghệ Thuật và Văn Hóa - Vietnamese

Thank you! Your input is so important in helping us come back from this.

Eastside arts

Traffic Alerts for the Week of June 24 Through June 30

Northeast 72nd Place and 116th Avenue Northeast

Kirkland’s 2019 overlay contractor will be striping on Thursday Northeast 72nd Place’s intersection with 116th Avenue Northeast.

Watson Asphalt’s crews will be working from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m.

Visit: www.kirklandwa.gov/streetpreservation

Cross Kirkland Corridor

A short section of the Cross Kirkland Corridor remains closed until July 2 while work crews from the Northshore Utility District improve the reliability of the area’s sewer system.

In addition to closing the corridor just south of its intersection with Northeast 124th Street, Razz Construction is also closing one of Northeast 124th Street’s vehicle lanes between Totem Lake Boulevard and 120th Place Northeast. 

Orange detour signs will direct trail users to go around the construction site using 120th Avenue Northeast, Northeast 116th Street, and 124th Avenue Northeast.

Visit www.kirklandwa.gov/totemlakegateway or www.kirklandwa.gov/ckc

Neighborhood Safety Program

Drivers should expect minor traffic delays at six locations this month while Kirkland’s contractor implements the 2019 Neighborhood Safety Program. NPM Construction is improving safety on Houghton’s 108th Avenue Northeast, Lakeview’s Lakeview Drive, North Rose Hill’s Slater Avenue, Norkirk’s Northeast 87th Street, Juanita’s Northeast 120th Street, and Kingsgate’s Northeast 132nd Street.

Visit: www.kirklandwa.gov/nsp

Totem Lake

Marshbank is continuing to close until July 1 all but one of Totem Lake Boulevard’s five lanes between Northeast 124th Street and 120th Avenue Northeast. The contractor expects to re-open one northbound lane on Tuesday and to keep open the southbound lane that is already open.

Visit www.kirklandwa.gov/totemlakegateway or www.kirklandwa.gov/totemlake

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 spring of 2021. 

Visit: www.kirklandwa.gov/108thavewatersewer

Upcoming Events

Wednesday market image

Kirkland Wednesday Market presented by the Kirkland Downtown Association

3 to 7 p.m. Every Wednesday through September 23

Marina Park

The Kirkland Downtown Association Wednesday Market opens Wednesday, June 10 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Marina Park. Please see the new market rules. If possible, please order from market vendors in advance. More information about the Wednesday Market is available at http://kirklandmarket.org/

Friday Market

Juanita Friday Market

3 to 7 p.m., Friday, June 5 through September 25, 2020

Juanita Beach Park

NEW! In alignment with the new state mandate, beginning Friday, June 26, face masks are required to enter the market.

Please allow for extra time as Public Health Seattle & King County is limiting the number of customers allowed in the market at any given time. Thank you for your patience! There are big changes this year so before you go, be sure to pre-order your purchases, check-out the drive-thru plans, and see how we'll be handling health & safety issues. And while we'd love to see everyone, if you're in a high-risk group please stay home and send a friend to do your shopping. 

Virtual Plant walk

Green Kirkland Partnership Online Plant Walk

11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Friday, June 26

Join the Green Kirkland Partnership for an online plant walk and natural area tour on Friday, June 26, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

You’ll see fun plants, cool habitat features and learn about steps that volunteers are taking to restore a natural area at one of your local Kirkland parks. Visit the Green Kirkland webpage for more details and to register.

KPC at Home

Kirkland Performance Center presents: KPC at Home

7 p.m., Friday, June 26

Virtual at the KPC Facebook page

Kirkland Performance Center is excited to present its brand new virtual platform: KPC at Home! These are challenging times for all of us, so KPC wants to help inspire and uplift through "live" music! Music is the ultimate unifier, bringing people together, breaking down barriers and healing the most painful of wounds. This Friday's "KPC at Home" performance features the bluesy Seattle-based band, Erin Rae & The Heartbeets.

Make sure visit the KPC Facebook page on Friday, June 26 at 7 p.m. to catch this band’s set.

Safer Summer for Events

Safer Free Confidential Shredding

North Kirkland Community Center (12421 103rd Ave. N.E.)

9 a.m. to noon, Tuesday, June 30

All shredding will be completed on site the day of the event by our vendor Confidential Data Disposal, a NAID AAA certified vendor who has provided shredding at Kirkland's events for many years. To minimize the time people are on site, we are asking people to leave the event as soon as they drop off their materials; please attend a future event if you would like to watch your materials shredded personally. Questions? Email recycle@kirklandwa.gov. Check out our flyer for additional details. 

Accepted: clean paper (staples OK, no binder clips). Limit four file-size boxes or paper grocery bags per car.

Event safety procedures: please wear a mask and stay in your vehicle unless directed otherwise.

KAC reflections image

Kirkland Arts Center 

May 21 through July 1

Reflections, a virtual exhibit

Kirkland Arts Center is excited to share its first virtual exhibition! Step into the KAC gallery from the comfort of your own home and be transported into Reflections: From 1962 to the Future, curated by Donna Lindeman Porter. Find out more at: www.KirklandArtsCenter.org/Reflections 

This exhibit is an ode to the many creatives and community members who have been part of the legacy of Kirkland Arts Center. This rich exhibition spanning more than four decades of work exemplifies the lasting difference individuals can make when we come together. This show features the work of more than sixty artists, including the renowned Patti Warashina and Tip Toland, and is a tribute to our community and the creative spark within each of us.

King County library

King County Library System presents: Plant-Based Cooking and the Prevention and Reversal of Diabetes

6 to 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, July 14

Online, virtual event

Type 2 Diabetes is an epidemic in our country. It affects people from all walks of life, including our children. Doctor visits, finger pricks, medications, injections, feeling tired and sick. It is all so unnecessary! Come learn about the causes of Diabetes and how to prevent and reverse Type 2 Diabetes through a plant-based diet, and find an alternative solution to the life sentence of Diabetes.

Brought to you by the Kingsgate Library.

Registration required by 10 a.m. on July 13.

Cancelled Programs/Events

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

The Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce All in-person Chamber events are cancelled until further notice. For more information, including ways to participate virtually, visit: https://kirklandchamber.org/

Kirkland Performance Center All Kirkland Performance Center shows have been postponed until further notice. For information about virtual performances, visit: https://www.facebook.com/kpcenter.org/ or http://www.kpcenter.org

Parks and Community Services Closures

• The Peter Kirk Pool shall be closed for the summer season.
• The North Kirkland Community Center and the Peter Kirk Community Center shall be closed for public use through September 1, 2020 except to provide selected senior services and support for human service needs.
• All public, private and non-profit special events that use City facilities and infrastructure are cancelled through September 1, 2020. Special events may be rescheduled after September 1 if authorized by the Governor’s “Safe Start” reopening plan.
• Green Kirkland Partnership restoration events are suspended until September 1, 2020.
• All current parks recreational programming is cancelled through September 1, 2020 to allow City recreation staff to prepare for COVID-19 modified programming after September 1.

For more information on programs and facilities that will be opened in a future phase of the Governor's Safe Start plan visit the City website