Council Recap | Fire Officer of the Year | COVID Vaccines | School Zone Safety Cameras

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this week in kirkland

January 20, 2021

city of kirkland washington

Council Recap

Council Zoom January 19

Thanks to all who attended and gave comment during last night's City Council meeting, which took place via the Zoom videoconferencing platform in alignment with current public health recommendations and guidelines.

The public is always welcome at Council meetings, which are a great way to have your voice heard while gaining a better understanding of how your City government operates. The public comment period, identified as "Items from the Audience" on the Council agenda, is your chance to address the Council directly, with both compliments and concerns. We appreciate everyone who spoke last night and exercised their option to educate our Council on the things that are important to them. 

For more information about Council meetings, including the Zoom link and instructions for providing public comment, please visit the City website. To view this council meeting or any past council meeting, go to Watch Council Meetings on the City’s website.

Here are a few highlights from the meeting:

Study Session: NE 85th St. Station Area Plan

During the 5:30 p.m. Study Session, the Council held its first discussion on the NE 85th St. Station Area Plan Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (DSEIS). City Planning staff, transportation management staff, and members of the Planning Commission joined the study session to facilitate discussion, answer questions, and hear feedback from Councilmembers. To view the study session, visit our Watch City Council Meetings webpage. More information about the Station Area Plan and how to provide comments by February 5 can be found at

Day of Racial Healing Proclamation

The Council proclaimed Tuesday, January 19 as the Day of Racial Healing in the City of Kirkland. The National Day of Racial Healing was established on January 17, 2017 by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and is observed every year on the Tuesday following Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. By proclaiming January 19, 2021 the Day of Racial Healing, all Kirkland residents are encouraged to share in collaborative community discussion on how to heal from the impacts of racism. The City is sponsoring a series of Kirkland Talks community dialogue events about racism throughout 2021. Information will be posted to the City’s website

This is the first time the City has made the Day of Racial Healing Proclamation. The proclamation was read by Councilmember Amy Falcone. Read the proclamation in its entirety on our website

Other items included:

  • A briefing by Police Chief Cherie Harris on the Law Enforcement Training and Community Safety Act and an anticipated regional Independent Force Investigation Team that will include non-law enforcement community representatives 
  • A proposal to authorize limited use of food trucks requested by existing brick-and-mortar businesses for special events in the City-owned downtown parking lots
  • The first State legislative update of 2021
  • City Council regional committee assignments
  • Review and discussion of the 2021-2022 City Work Program
  • The agenda for the upcoming February Council Retreat

The next Council meeting takes place Tuesday, February 2. For more information about the Kirkland City Council, visit our Council webpage

Kirkland Lt. Jon Hernandez Named 2019 Fire Officer of the Year

Firefighter of the Year

On Tuesday, January 19, Kirkland Fire Chief Joe Sanford presented Kirkland Fire Department’s 2019 Fire Officer of the Year award to Lt. Jon Hernandez. Jon was selected by his peers from a candidate pool that included all department officers. Jon is lead of Kirkland’s wildland firefighting team and currently the company officer at Station 25 in Finn Hill. “Jon is an outstanding company officer. Every day, he displays the leadership attributes we value the most in the Kirkland Fire Department,” Sanford said.

Lt. Hernandez has been with the Kirkland Fire Department since 2007.

The presentation of this award was delayed due to COVID-19 and the City's ongoing response. Visit our website for more information about the Kirkland Fire Department.

Washington State Department of Health Expands Access to COVID-19 Vaccine

DOH logo

The Washington State Department of Health announced that access to COVID-19 vaccine is expanding to thousands more people per week.  If you want to know what phase you’re in, find your spot in line by going to The website is currently experiencing high traffic – thank you for your patience.  Please visit for the latest guidance and information about COVID-19.

DOH COVID vaccine webpage

New: Now Recruiting Kirkland Community Court Volunteers

City logo

The City is recruiting Community Court volunteers. This is a new ongoing City of Kirkland volunteer opportunity. 

Community Court takes place 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesdays and is held via the Zoom video conferencing platform. This is an online volunteer assignment.  

Volunteers needed:

  • 2 Court Room Note-Takers  
  • 2 Court Room Navigators
  • 1 Resource Center Moderator
  • 2 Resource Center Navigators

If selected as a member of the new, exciting Community Court team, you would join with two other volunteers and assist Kirkland Municipal Court staff. Community Court is problem-solving court designed to connect qualifying defendants with resources and services to successfully complete their court requirements and is organized into two "rooms": Court Room and Resource Center. Kirkland’s Community Court is being launched 100 percent online, and so these volunteer assignments are virtual.

The Note-Taker records court actions taken, then turns notes over to staff. The Moderator welcomes defendants and other visitors to the virtual Resource Center then connects/matches them to real-time resource representatives; tallies visitors total. The Navigator orients defendants, helps them develop an action plan, then follows-up to monitor their progress; also attends two regular pre-court meetings. Detailed volunteer position descriptions are available upon request.

Volunteer candidates should enjoy working with the public, demonstrate ability to follow court procedures and to be a productive member of a staff-volunteer team. Multiple language fluency is preferred.

Volunteer candidates must have access to a computer, the Internet and Basic Microsoft Office and Zoom software products.  If at some point in the future, Kirkland decides to convert Community Court to in-person proceedings, these volunteer assignments would require in-person service. As with all ongoing City of Kirkland volunteer assignments, prospective volunteers must successfully complete an online application, interview, two references, national background check, orientation and training. Must be at least 21 years of age and make a 12-month commitment.

The online application deadline is extended to Monday, January 25, 10 p.m. Please type ‘community court’ in the application volunteer interest field. For additional information and to receive the volunteer position descriptions, please contact Patrick Tefft, Volunteer Services Coordinator:

School Zone Safety Cameras to be Reactivated February 4, 2021

Traffic cameras

The Lake Washington School District has announced that in-person services will begin on Thursday, February 4 starting with kindergarten and first grade students and then phasing in additional grades over the following weeks.

For the safety of students, school zone speed enforcement will resume on February 4, including school zone safety cameras. Drivers must obey speed limits as posted in school zones or they could be ticketed and fined. For more information about school zone speed enforcement, go to

Thank you for driving with care in order to keep returning students safe.

Green Kirkland Partnership Volunteers Make MLK Day of Service a "Day On" at Two Kirkland Parks

Green Kirkland Partnership Tree

Masks and social distancing did nothing to discourage the efforts of our hardworking Green Kirkland Partnership volunteers, who spent the morning on Monday, January 18, at MLK Day of Service events held in two Kirkland parks!

North Rose Hill Woodlands Park

A small but mighty team of five volunteers joined Green Kirkland in celebration of MLK Jr. Day of Service at North Rose Hill Woodlands Park. Volunteers dug-in to plant 40 native conifers (Douglas fir, spruce, shore pine) and flowering native shrubs at a site formerly dominated by invasive blackberry. Volunteers also spread mulch around the plants to keep them healthy through the summer and reduce competition from pesky weeds. The City of Kirkland Parks natural area crew and Green Kirkland volunteers will continue to nurture the plantings with weeding and watering through the summer.

These new plantings will provide diverse habitat for wildlife while cleaning the air and protecting our water quality for future generations!

Green Kirkland MLK Day

Juanita Beach Park

Another huge thank you to the wonderful small team of four volunteers who celebrated MLK Jr. Day of Service by tackling invasive Himalayan blackberry across a 10,000-square-foot site at Juanita Beach Park. Removing the blackberry regrowth gives the young native plants previously planted at this site a chance to grow.  Soon, these trees and shrubs will be big enough to shade the stream, keeping the water cool, and their roots will help hold the soil on the stream banks, preventing excess sediment from washing into the stream.

This event was part of a larger project funded through a King County Wastewater Division Waterworks grant to improve water quality in Juanita Creek.

Uprooting blackberries is both grueling and labor intensive, as the stubborn root balls protest their own removal vehemently. Huge thanks to Matt Baughman, who recruited his daughters, Molly and Maya, to help. While uprooting blackberries is hard work, many of our volunteers find it distinctly satisfying. Maya was no different.

“I’m having fun,” Maya said. 

Volunteer with Green Kirkland! Pre-registration and face coverings are required to participate in Green Kirkland volunteer events. Space is limited. For more information or to sign-up for an upcoming event, visit the Green Kirkland Partnership webpage. 

Green Kirkland MLK Day 1

Have You Taken the 2021 Shop Local Pledge?

SLK logo

Shop Local Kirkland makes it easier than ever to support Kirkland businesses now when they need it the most.

Our unique community of small businesses is one of our greatest assets and one of the things that makes Kirkland so inviting and fun for people who live, work and play here. Our businesses are vibrant, resilient and dedicated to surviving these challenging times with grace. They are truly our lifeblood, and now is the time to demonstrate your support by using your dollars to purchase with purpose. 

Take the 2021 Shop Local Pledge by committing to regularly purchase goods or services via

Not sure what you're looking for? Once you're on the Shop Local Kirkland homepage, hit the yellow "search" button to reveal a multitude of options. Search by category or by neighborhood to find exactly what you're looking for. 

You never know what you'll find on Shop Local Kirkland!

Kirkland Business Survey: Give Feedback on the City’s COVID-19 Support

The City of Kirkland is trying to do all it can to help businesses survive COVID-19 and thrive beyond it. We need your input to help inform strategies of support. Please visit Business Survey: COVID-19 Impacts & Support to take the survey. 

For more information on the City's response to COVID-19, including resources and tools for Kirkland businesses, visit the Business Resources webpage on the City website. 

City of Kirkland Extends Commitment to Renewable Energy for City Operations to Twenty Years

Wind energy

As of January 7, 2021, the City of Kirkland has entered into an agreement to participate in Puget Sound Energy’s Green Direct Program for the next twenty years, doubling the timeframe of the City’s original agreement approved by the City Council in May 2017. The Green Direct Program is a groundbreaking initiative designed to provide PSE corporate and governmental customers the ability to purchase 100 percent of their energy from a dedicated, local, renewable energy resource while providing a stable, cost efficient solution. 

This means that all facilities owned by the City of Kirkland such as buildings, lift stations, and park facilities are now powered by clean, renewable energy not derived from fossil fuels. Extending the agreement from ten years to twenty years accomplishes early action on a key goal of the City’s Sustainability Master Plan that was adopted in December 2020.

“Sustainability is an important value for Kirkland. We have set a goal of ensuring that the community’s purchased energy is 100 percent carbon-free by 2030, and we are leading the way by sourcing renewable electricity for City operations,” said Kirkland Deputy Mayor Jay Arnold. “Extending Kirkland’s commitment to the Green Direct Program provides the leadership and stability that PSE needs in order to invest in infrastructure that supports renewable energy.”

Last month, PSE announced that its Green Direct customers, including the City of Kirkland, are now receiving renewable energy from the Skookumchuck Wind Facility. The Skookumchuck Wind Facility is located on Weyerhaeuser timber land, in Lewis and Thurston counties and is the largest wind project in Western Washington. Kirkland’s extended participation in the Green Direct Program not only makes it possible for more wind and solar facilities to be built sooner, it helps build capacity so that PSE can fulfill the terms of the Clean Energy Transformation Act that was signed by Governor Jay Inslee in 2019. 

“The Clean Energy Transformation Act requires that utilities provide electricity that is 100 percent from clean, renewable sources by 2045,” said David Barnes, senior planner for the City of Kirkland and project manager of the Sustainability Master Plan. “The City’s 20-year commitment to the Green Direct Program supports PSE’s progress toward meeting that requirement as well as Kirkland’s goal of carbon-free energy by 2030. It’s exciting to make progress on a key goal of the Sustainability Master Plan less than a month after the plan was adopted.”

To learn more about the City’s Sustainability Master Plan and things you can do to help implement it, go to Information about PSE’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions can be found at

Upcoming Events

Our Kirkland

City of Kirkland's Our Kirkland Online Service Portal

Always available


Have you ever had a question about something you’ve noticed in the City, or a concern about City infrastructure, including streets, parks, sidewalks or streetlights? The Our Kirkland service request portal is your direct connection to City Hall. You can report nonemergency issues, request services, ask questions, or even contact the City Council.

For more information about Our Kirkland, or to submit a request, visit:, or access Our Kirkland right from the City’s homepage at

Color Your World

Kirkland Parks & Community Services presents "Color Your World!"


Online event

Skin comes in many different colors, and all are beautiful. Draw a picture of yourself, show us the color of your skin, hair and eyes. Let us see how beautiful and proud you are! For more about Color Your World, watch this great video on the Parks & Community Services Facebook page

Email your picture with your name to Your art will be featured on the Kirkland Parks & Community Services Facebook page! 

Love of Kirkland Scavenger

Kirkland Parks & Community Services presents the Love of Kirkland Scavenger Hunt

Registration starts January 25 

Online self-guided event

Are you ready? Kirkland Parks and Community Services is hosting a brand-new scavenger hunt that kicks off Friday, February 5! Not only will you get the opportunity to learn and have fun while you explore our beautiful City, but you might also win prizes!

Registration opens Monday, January 25 at:

Juanita Beach Green Kirkland

Green Kirkland Partnership presents Stewardship Wednesdays at Juanita Bay Park 

10 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, January 27

IMPORTANT NOTE: These are outdoor events. *Pre-registration is required for all participants to ensure we are following public health guidelines and have enough tools/space. There are no drop-in options at any event at this time.

Pre-registration and wearing face coverings is required for these small group events.

Volunteers will help restore critical habitat by removing invasive plants such as blackberry or ivy, planting native plants, and pitching-in with stewardship tasks like mulching and weeding. With your help, this park with have healthy and thriving natural areas for years to come!

This portion of Juanita Bay Park features dense forest which serves as wonderful habitat for owls, deer, and all kinds of other wildlife.

All experience levels and ages are welcome following the safety and event guidelines (see below). Tools and training are provided. Events are 100 percent outdoors and occur rain or shine! This event is led by City of Kirkland Parks staff.

To register, visit the Green Kirkland Partnership webpage.

KPC show

Kirkland Performance Center presents: A Virtual Concert with Nite Wave

8 p.m. Thursday, January 28

Live, virtual show

Formed in 2011 as the result of a Craigslist Ad, Nite Wave is a band passionate about 80s New Wave and putting on a show you’ll never forget. Nite Wave has had the privilege of being hand picked by Billy Idol to open up for him on tour and have also shared the stage with Jane Wiedlin of The Go-Go’s, Clive Farrington of When in Rome and Multi-Platinum selling artist Tiffany.

Everything from Prince to Depeche Mode to Duran Duran to INXS and more!

Nite Wave pays homage to the artists who designed a decade and bring a certain energy to their shows that is unique and infectious.

Visit the Kirkland Performance Center Facebook page to view this livestream. 

Tilth Alliance

Tilth Alliance presents: Become a Soil & Water Steward with Tilth Alliance

Apply by February 1, 2021

Zoom and small group

Participants will meet one weekend each month from February–October. Saturday mornings will consist of interactive classes held over Zoom with Tilth Alliance educators and expert guest instructors. On Sundays, we will apply what we’ve learned through hands-on community projects, working in small groups of up to 5 volunteers during a two-hour morning or afternoon shift, following all relevant COVID-19 safety guidelines. 

These projects will take place at Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands in Seattle, McAuliffe Park in Kirkland and other garden and partner sites in King County. 

For more information about this stewardship program, visit the Tilth Alliance webpage

Studio East Laramie

Studio East presents: The Laramie Project

February 5 through February 7

Streaming online

The Laramie Project tells the true story of Matthew Shepard, a college student, who was killed in October 1998 in a hate crime for being gay.

In the months following Shepard’s death, The Tectonic Theatre Project conducted interviews with citizens of his hometown of Laramie, Wyoming. The play, which will be adapted into a radio drama by Studio East, takes verbatim dialogue from real-time accounts to tell its story. “A deeply moving testament to the character of one small town,” says Director Zach Barr, “The Laramie Project investigates our collective responsibility in the face of tragedy and how each individual responds as that great work begins.”

For more information on this production, visit the Studio East webpage