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King County Councilmember Pete von Reichbauer
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News from and about King County… from health updates to community news affecting our daily lives.

Dear Friends:

Happy New Year! Today’s update includes news about a recent visit to the Pacific City Park and gymnasium, a meeting with Amazon’s Housing Equity Fund director, a snapshot of a few of the many services King County provides for our residents, crime, law enforcement and health updates, and more.

Washington Trivia

This city of Tacoma librarian coined the name of the popular candy, Almond Roca. Who was she?
(Answer is at the bottom).

A tour of Pacific City Park and Gymnasium

Recently, I toured the city of Pacific's new outdoor fitness equipment and gymnasium. In addition to their modern playground, basketball court, stage and picnic area, their outdoor equipment has everything you need to start your new year’s resolution, if you can stand the cold!

With Pacific Mayor Leanne Guier and Community Services Manager Kevin Caviezel

Amazon Housing Equity Fund Initiative

I had the opportunity to meet with Amazon Housing Equity Fund Director Catherine Buell to discuss Amazon’s latest investment in affordable homes in the Puget Sound region, particularly in Federal Way. Since the Fund’s creation, Amazon has committed over $500 million in loans and predevelopment grants to create or preserve over 5,000 affordable homes in the Puget Sound region. 334 of these homes are in a new development at Redondo Heights in Federal Way, made possible with a $20 million low-rate loan to support construction in partnership with Shelter Resources.

With Amazon Housing Equity Fund Director Catherine Buell

Services offered by King County

King County International Airport/Boeing Field

Supports $3.5 billion in local business and 16,000 jobs, creating $2 billion in labor income in King County. The 150 tenants directly support more than 5,000 jobs in the regional economy. The airport serves small commercial passenger airlines, cargo carriers, private aircraft owners, helicopters, corporate jets, and military and other aircraft. It's also home to various Boeing Company operations as well as The Museum of Flight.

Harborview Medical Center

Harborview is the only designated Level 1 adult and pediatric trauma and verified burn center in the state of Washington and is the largest hospital provider of charity care in Washington state, providing quality care to indigent, homeless, mentally ill, incarcerated, and non-English speaking adult populations in King County.

In 1931, the new 400-bed Harborview Hospital was opened on its current site, once called Profanity Hill, now known as First Hill. Since then, it has been the main tertiary-care training facility for the University of Washington's School of Nursing and is the main site for the region's medical and nursing education. Harborview is owned by King County, and since 1967 the University of Washington has been contracted to provide the management and operations.

King County Sheriff’s Office

The King County Sheriff’s Office has over 1,200 employees and serves the law enforcement needs of over half a million people in unincorporated areas and twelve contract cities including Carnation, Sammamish, Skykomish, Woodinville, Beaux Arts Village, Covington, Maple Valley, Newcastle, Burien, SeaTac, Kenmore, and Shoreline. The KCSO also provides police departments for the Muckleshoot Tribe, Metro Transit, and the King County International Airport. However, services such as helicopters and bomb disposal are available to King County's 2.2 million residents.

King County Wastewater Treatment Division

In the 1950s, wastewater flowed into Lake Washington and Puget Sound and many rivers and smaller lakes without enough treatment, fouling water and making a sullied mess of local beaches. In 1958, the voters created Metro and developed a regional wastewater treatment system based on watersheds as opposed to political boundaries.

Shortly after Metro was formed, construction began on the county's two existing regional treatment plants, West Point in Seattle's Magnolia neighborhood and South Treatment Plant in Renton, which were officially up and running by 1966. By the late 1960s, regional water quality began improving dramatically. In 1994, King County assumed authority of Metro and its legal obligation to treat wastewater for 34 local jurisdictions and local sewer agencies that contract with King County.

Did you know?

• King County is the 12th largest county in the nation.
• If King County were a state, it would be the 37th largest state in the nation.
• Unincorporated King County has a population of 248,160.
• Seattle is the largest city in King County with a population of 762,500, while Skykomish is the smallest city in King County with a population of 165.
• King County International Airport is one of the nation’s busiest non-hub airports, averaging 180,000 takeoffs and landings each year and is the home base for about 150 businesses including air cargo companies, flight schools, charter operations and helicopter services.
• Harborview Medical Center serves as the regional trauma and burn referral center for Alaska, Montana and Idaho, and the disaster preparedness and disaster control center for Seattle and King County.
• The Renton wastewater treatment plant, also known as the “South Plant,” treats wastewater for about 720,000 people living east and south of Lake Washington. Approximately 90 million gallons a day of wastewater is treated at this facility during the dry months and up to about 300 million gallons a day during the rain/storm season.
• The King County Sheriff’s Office has 781 commissioned officer positions (deputies through chiefs). There are currently 99 vacancies.

Mariners’ Spring Training Schedule

After last year’s successful season, I know many are considering visiting Peoria for Spring Training. Go M’s!

Click the image to see the Seattle Mariners’ Spring Schedule

Crime Updates

This update is intended to inform you about what is happening in our communities and where. My hope is that this information will not only make us better informed, but also provide us with solutions for how we can address the issues facing our community as we move forward. Click the following links to see crime information in Auburn, Federal Way, and all of King County.

For a complete breakdown of law enforcement deaths throughout U.S. history, click here. For a complete list of benefits for public safety officers and survivors as shared by Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.), click here.

Health Updates

CDC National Health Survey is coming to King County

The CDC’s National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), the most comprehensive survey of the health and nutritional status of the U.S. population, will be surveying randomly selected households in King County beginning January 4, 2023. This year, King County is one of 15 counties selected to be part of this initiative.

King County COVID-19 Case Update

Today, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 229 daily average positive cases, bringing the total in King County to 538,782. In addition, Public Health reported 0.7 daily average deaths, bringing the total in the county to 3,400.

Recent data may be incomplete. For more information, visit the King County COVID Daily Summary Dashboard here.

Vaccine Locator: To find COVID-19 vaccine appointments, visit Vaccine Locator.

For King County residents: Register here to schedule your appointment at one of the high-volume vaccination sites in King County.

For in-home vaccination: Call King County COVID-19 Call Center at 206-477-3977.

To register by phone: Call King County COVID-19 Call Center at 206-477-3977 or Washington COVID-19 Assistance Hotline at 1-800-525-0127, then press #.

For veterans: Call 206-716-5716 or visit www.va.gov/health-care/covid-19-vaccine.

For more information, visit getting vaccinated or getting tested in King County.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 9-8-8 to connect to the new Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, text TALK to 741-741 or visit https://988lifeline.org/.

Find your King County Council district here.

With best wishes,

Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember

Washington trivia answer:

In 1923, Tacoma confectioners Harry Brown and J.C. Haley created a chocolate-coated hard toffee covered in a crust of chopped almonds that made it less messy than its contemporaries. When Brown brought samples of his unnamed creation to local residents, Tacoma librarian Jacqueline Noel suggested that he call it "Almond Roca," including the Spanish word "roca", meaning "rock", to describe the hard, log-shaped confection.

The United States Department of War later selected the candy as a product to distribute to U.S. Military facilities around the world. Tins of Almond Roca were shipped to American soldiers during World War II and in Korea. Brown & Haley went on to develop Cashew Roca, Macadamia Roca, Peppermint Roca, Mocha Roca, as well as dark chocolate and sugar-free varieties whose names can all be attributed to Noel's suggestion. Jacqueline Noel passed away in 1964, carrying not only the legacy of naming the candy but also as the driving force behind the creation of branch libraries in Tacoma, which multiplied due to her efforts.

Photo Source: Wikipedia

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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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