COVID-19 Update from Councilmember Megan Dunn

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COVID-19 Update from Councilmember Megan Dunn

March 2020

Megan Dunn's eNewsletter

CM Dunn Headshot

Snohomish County Council
3000 Rockefeller Ave., M/S 609
Everett, Washington 98201
8th floor, Robert J. Drewel Building 
Phone: 425-388-3494


Paula Rhyne, Legislative Aide

Dear Friend:

I'm writing today to share more information about the hard work that the County and my office are doing in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, and to provide links to available resources so that you can have the information that you need during these uncertain times. 

Our community has been pulling together in really amazing ways to help each other as we start to feel the impacts to our economy and healthcare system. The State, County, Health Districts and local human services providers are concerned with impacts to the most vulnerable in our communities, including the unsheltered, those with unstable housing, food insecurity, and the elderly. Below are some resources regarding access to food, childcare, unemployment insurance, and other resources. 

Please be aware that there is a lot of misinformation that is circulating regarding COVID-19. It's important to rely on credible sources for your information. Starting with information from Snohomish Health DistrictSnohomish CountyState of WashingtonState Health Department and other local resources will be the most reliable. Additionally, the County has a Daily Phone Update for Snohomish County that can be heard by calling 425-388-3944. 

As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our office if we can be of assistance in any way. The best way to reach us is either through email us at or by calling us at 425-388-3494 and we will get back to you as soon as possible. We are committed to being responsive to our constituents and would be happy to answer any questions or help to resolve any concerns that you may have. 


Megan Dunn, Snohomish County Council, District 2 

Paula Rhyne, Legislative Aide 

County Resources and Information

Earlier this month, Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers declared a Local Declaration of Emergency for Snohomish County. This civil declaration opened up resources that the County can use to combat the spread and impact of COVID-19. Namely, it streamlines the procurement process for the County to acquire necessary equipment and supplies for first responders. The County has been working closely with the City of Everett and Snohomish Health District to coordinate efforts. Here is a graphic to help with determining what types of activities are allowed and not allowed at this time: 

Health District What's Allowed


Starting March 17, the Executive has restricted access to Snohomish County Facilities. This includes limiting all in-person transactions, and moving operations from some offices to either exclusively online or over the phone. A comprehensive list of County departments and procedures that have been modified can be found on this website. My office is following this directive by working from home, but we are still able to respond to constituents and represent the district on many many conference calls and video meetings! 

With specific regard to Council meetings, we are temporarily moving and consolidating meetings to reduce the number of times that people need to congregate. This website has our listings of Council and Committee Meetings. We are also recommending that the public provide comment via email instead of in-person to reduce exposure to COVID-19. You can contact the whole council at 

Employment and Economic Resources

The closure of so many businesses in the area will have a cascading economic impact that is going to be incredibly difficult on so many in our community.  

State Assistance: The State of Washington has been able to secure and release money needed to bolster unemployment benefits, paid sick leave, and small business loans. Information about State support for employers and workers can be found on this website.  

County Assistance:The County's Human Services Department has assistance services available to County residents. The in-person service center has been closed, but you can call them at 425-388-7200 or email at for assistance with navigating various County programs.  

Utility Assistance: I was glad to hear that Snohomish County PUD has agreed to not disconnect customers for late payment at this time. They also offer Income-Qualified Assistance Programs for people whose household income has recently changed.  

Puget Sound Energy (PSE) has also announced they will not disconnect customers at this time. PSE received approval from the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission for a waiver that allows PSE to waive late fees. Additionally, they are offering payment arrangements or choosing a new bill due date (through your online account). PSE also has an energy assistance portal to help facilitate access to funds available to income qualified customers.  

Child Care Resources

As the parent of two active teenagers, I certainly understand the impacts that school closures have on families. Childcare can be difficult to navigate and I recognize that not all families have the ability to stay home with their kids as schools and daycare programs are cancelled. I'm glad to hear that schools are still able to provide free and reduced lunches to not just children who qualify, but to any family who is need. Here are some resources to help navigate closures, accessing food, and other general information: 

If you know of any other resources in our community for childcare, please let me know so I can pass the information along!

Local Human Services Providers

We are so lucky to have such a strong network of human services providers in our area that are focused on providing services to the most vulnerable in our community. I recently reached out to local groups to start a series of conference calls with providers in the area so that we can all share needs, resources, and ideas. As these calls continue, I will remain focused on serving those in our community who are the most vulnerable to the fluctuations of the economy. 

We recently learned that our community partners at Providence Medical Center (via Providence Institute for a Healthier Community) put together a resource hub called Give Well Local which, in response to COVID-19, helps to connect organizations in the area who *need* services with other organizations that have the capacity to *provide* these same services. If you are with an organization who serves the unsheltered or other vulnerable populations, or you know of a group who does, please utilize this link to help connect those on the front lines in our community. 

Give Well Local


Additionally, our partners at the Community Foundation of Snohomish County recently reached out to share with us that they have put together a Coronavirus Response Fund. This fund is a cross-sector partnership of local philanthropic ventures which will help deploy resources to those in Snohomish County who need it most.  

On Monday, March 16, the four agency partners, Community Foundation of Snohomish County, Snohomish County, United Way, and the Snohomish Health District, telephonically met to allocate first grants from the fund. The focus of the first round of funding was on immediate, safety-net services to families, seniors and individuals. Prioritized funding is to nonprofits with strong relationships, a proven track record, and geographic disbursement. A total of $250,000 was awarded. Here is a link to more information on the fund, how you can apply for a grant, how you can donate to the fund, and for more information on the grant recipients, please visit their website. 

Community Foundation Snohomish County


Many non-profit organizations in our community are really struggling right now as many of their spring fundraisers have been cancelled. If you have the resources, please consider donating to local non-profits so they can continue to meet the needs in our community. 

Local Business

Local businesses and the hospitality industry are facing economic uncertainty. There are several efforts to highlight and connect consumers with local businesses, drive thru options and curbside pick up. Here are some hubs for current efforts in District 2: 

City of Everett: Everett is collecting information to create a hub for businesses and consumers to know how to best support local businesses during this time through this Everett for Everett portal. From the website it says, “Let’s show our neighborhood restaurants, businesses and artists that, when the chips are down, Everett has their back.”  

City of MukilteoHere is a link to the Mukilteo Chamber of Commerce with listings of restaurants that are still open and how you can order from them. Additionally, they have resource information for business owners to help them through this situation. Business owners can find more info on CDC recommendations, response kits and disaster loans at this link  

And this great hub from our neighbors in the City of Snohomish.  

Mortarium on Mortgages and Evictions

Several people have written and asked about a moratorium on evictions and temporary relief for property taxes and fines.  

The City of Everett announced an emergency moratorium on evictions as well as the cities of Burien and Seattle. Earlier this week, I signed on to the support letter to ask  Governor Inslee to extend due dates and penalties relating to tax collection. This action would help the elderly, many of whom have paid off their properties come in person to the county to pay their taxes. Although we do not have any solid numbers it is clear their will be a severe impact to our restaurants, hotels and other small businesses during this period of mandatory closures and other restrictions. And finally those who have been suffered sudden layoffs putting a hardship on their families will get some relief from fines and penalties.  

Yesterday, Governor Inslee also announced a handful of substantial measures to provide relief for Washington workers and businesses, including the tax relief measures I mentioned earlier. These include: 

  • A statewide 30-day moratorium on residential evictions; 
  • Giving the Department of Revenue authority to provide flexibility in tax collections and a variety of fees and penalties retroactive to February 29, the date the Governor initially declared a state of emergency; 
  • Waiving a 1-week application waiting period for unemployment insurance; 
  • And expanding eligibility for the Family Emergency Assistance Program to now include families without children. 

More information on these actions from the Governor can be found here 

In Closing

I know that this is an incredibly challenging time that we are all going through right now. Please consider myself and our office as a resource to help connect you with any information or services that you may need. Things are changing rapidly, and in this time of uncertainty, we can all lean on each other (not literally!) to navigate these rough waters together. Please email me at or call our office at 425-388-3494 to let us know how we can assist you, to update us on anything going on in your community, or to share concerns you may have. 


Megan Dunn, Councilmember District 2 

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