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King County Councilmember Pete von Reichbauer
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Dear Friends:

Today’s update includes information on the Governor’s announcement on public-private partnerships on vaccine administration, infrastructure for increased vaccinations across the state, the upcoming application deadline for the King County Parks Youth and Amateur Sports Grants, the ongoing suspension of ESD’s job search requirements, Sound Transit’s online public outreach and road closures, and more.

Washington Trivia

How did Mercer Island get its name?

(Answer is at the bottom).

Governor announces public-private partnerships on vaccine administration

Governor Jay Inslee announced public-private partnerships to effectively distribute and administer COVID vaccines across the state. The state is working with pharmacies and private companies to establish mass vaccination sites and maximize vaccination rates.

Amazon and Virginia Mason Franciscan Health have partnered to administer 2,000 COVID vaccines at a pop-up clinic at the Amazon Meeting Center South Lake Union in Seattle this Sunday, January 24th, from 8:30 AM – 4:00 PM. Free parking will be provided. The vaccines will be available to Phase 1A and 1B groups and will be administered at no charge, with or without medical insurance. People can sign up to be on the Virginia Mason vaccine waitlist and wait to be scheduled.

Amazon will also administer vaccines to their 20,000 essential workers in Washington state at their facilities and are working with a third-party provider to do vaccinations once they are available to them.

Here are other public-private partnerships:

Kaiser Permanente: planning expertise for mass vaccination clinics and the distribution of vaccine to healthcare providers throughout the state
Starbucks: operational efficiency, scalable modeling and human-centered design expertise and support
Microsoft: technology expertise and support
Costco: vaccine delivery by pharmacies
SEIU 1199NW: coordination of volunteer vaccinators to locations where they are most needed
UFCW 21: staffing and training coordination of vaccinators
WSNA: safety and health consultation for providers
SeaMar: voice for historically underserved communities
National Guard: logistics and infrastructure support

Infrastructure for increased vaccinations

As part of the state’s plan for widespread vaccine distribution and administration, the Washington Department of Health (DOH) will coordinate volunteer vaccinators to support vaccine administration in Spokane, Kennewick and Bellevue. DOH will also connect with all vaccine administrators across the state to assess where additional assistance is needed to meet the new requirements. Read more here.

The state will also be establishing multiple high-capacity vaccination sites to prepare for future vaccine allocations. Some of the sites will build upon existing infrastructure and DOH will coordinate with local health officials and the National Guard to set up the following sites starting next week:

• Spokane Arena in Spokane
• Benton County Fairgrounds in Kennewick
• Town Toyota Center in Wenatchee
• Clark County Fairgrounds in Ridgefield

DOH designed a Phase Finder tool to help Washingtonians find out if they are eligible for a COVID vaccine now or if not, sign up to be notified when they become eligible.

King County Parks Youth and Amateur Sports Grants

King County Parks is still accepting letters of interest for youth sports capital projects and program grants until January 27th. Read the grant program guidelines (PDF) and visit the online grant portal to start the application process.

• Capital Projects and Programs requesting $20,000 or more have a two-step application process and are required to submit a Letter of Interest through the online grant portal by noon on January 27th. Select applicants will be invited to submit full proposals.

• Programs requesting an Activation Grant of $15,000 or less are required only to submit an application through the online grant portal by noon on January 27th.

Job search requirements continue to be suspended

The Washington State House of Representatives and Senate voted to continue the suspension of job search requirements for those receiving unemployment benefits until the Pandemic State of Emergency is withdrawn by the Governor or legislative action, whichever is first. Read more here.

Virtual Public Outreach for the Operations and Maintenance Facility South

Sound Transit will be conducting a robust virtual public outreach to gather feedback on which of the three potential sites for the Operations and Maintenance Facility South (OMF South) should be advanced as the preferred alternative, as well as potential impacts, benefits, and identified mitigation. A preferred alternative is a statement of where the agency is leaning based on information available at the time and is not a final decision.

A Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) comment period for the OMF South will be published March 5th and will close on April 19th. Two public hearings are scheduled for March 24th and 30th. Comments can also be submitted through the online open house, by e-mail, voicemail, and mail anytime during the 45-day comment period starting on March 5th. For questions, contact the engagement team at 206-398-5453 or omfsouth@soundtransit.org.

Road Closure: State Route 99 for Federal Way Link Construction

Crews working on the Federal Way Link Extension will be closing State Route 99 between South 204th Street and South 208th Street in SeaTac to move construction equipment across the roadway. All lanes of SR 99 will be closed beginning Friday, January 22nd, from 8:00 PM to 1:00 AM.

Northbound drivers will be detoured around the closure by heading west on South 208th Street, north on 24th Avenue South, and east on South 200th Street back to SR 99. Drivers traveling south will head west on South 200th Street, south on 26th Avenue South, and east on South 208th Street back to SR 99.

King County Case Update

Today, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 521 new cases, bringing the total in King County to 73,445. In addition, Public Health reported 8 new deaths, bringing the total in the county to 1,206.

Stay In. Stay Healthy. Stay Strong.

Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember

Washington trivia answer:

Located between Seattle and Bellevue, Mercer Island, according to folklore, was believed to be inhabited by an evil spirit, which forced the Duwamish Indians to stay away from the island except to gather wild berries during the day. Another Duwamish belief was that the island would sink into the lake each night and rise again in the morning.

Mercer Island was slow to attract settlers until the three Mercer brothers of Virginia arrived with the early settlers in the Seattle area. The Mercer brothers often rowed between the island and Seattle to hunt, fish and pick berries. Shortly thereafter, the island was named after one of the three brothers, Judge Thomas Mercer.

Compiled by Cyndee Navarro of my office.

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Contact me: pete.vonreichbauer@kingcounty.gov
206-477-1007, 800-325-6165, TTY/TDD 206-296-1024
Website: www.kingcounty.gov/vonReichbauer
Facebook: www.facebook.com/pete.vonreichbauer

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