Today’s update includes an update from the Auburn Farmers Market, K-12 education in our state, additional free COVID-19 testing sites in South King County, and more.
What is our state’s oldest county?
What are the smallest and largest counties in square miles? (Answers at the bottom).
Auburn Farmers Market
The Auburn Farmers Market is open for business! Be sure to stop by this weekend and please remember to wear a mask. In these times of uncertainty, I appreciated the opportunity to visit the Farmers Market last Sunday on their opening day. The market will be open again this Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Les Gove Park (1140 Auburn Way South, Auburn, WA. 98002).
Last weekend, the Auburn Farmers Market opened for the 2020 season with new hygiene measures and social distancing guidelines to keep proprietors and customers safe. Thanks to Auburn Mayor Nancy Backus for kicking off this year’s season with an “elbow bump”, and offering to distribute new cloth masks I gave her for our 55 and over residents.
Washington Schools Expected to Reopen in Fall
Washington schools are expected to reopen for in-person classes and other activities this fall. This would be with several safety guidelines in place, and the possibility of distance learning as needed on a district by district basis, according to Chris Reykdal, Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Reykdal’s office and a workgroup of more than 120 educators, parents, students and community organizations came up with guidelines for reopening schools, though deciding how much to reopen and when is in large part up to districts. The phase the county is in will also weigh on how schools reopen. Cloth masks, social distancing and other health safety measures are among the guidelines to bring students back to schools.
You can read the full planning guide here as well as the Seattle Times coverage of the announcement at this link.
Technical Assistance and Language Support for Unincorporated Small Businesses
Business owners in unincorporated King County can call or sign up online to receive business assistance coaching. This service is provided under the $4 million Small Business Assistance Program, approved by the King County Council in May. The program is designed to help businesses in the unincorporated areas recover from the impacts of COVID-19 related closures. To learn more about the program, click here.
Expanded Free Testing in South King County
Public Health has expanded free COVID-19 testing resources in South King County. The sites will be located at Sea Mar Community Health Centers in South Park, HealthPoint in Auburn and at UW Mobile Clinic at Auburn City Adventist Church. This is in addition to the free testing center at the Sea Mar Clinic in Federal Way. In addition, this Saturday and Sunday (June 13th- June 14th), free drive-through COVID-19 testing and essential supplies will be available in Renton (955 Powell Ave SW Renton, WA 98057) and Federal Way (31405 18th Ave S. Federal Way, WA 98003). King County is partnering with local community organizations and Ms. Tina Knowles Lawson’s #IDIDMYPART campaign and Beyoncé’s BeyGood for this launch event. You can learn more here.
Most people should access testing through their regular health care provider. But, if you are unable to do so, please seek testing at one of the free sites. Language interpretation services are also available.
King County Metro Service Increases
On June 22nd, King County Metro will be restoring some transit service as more industries reopen and restrictions are gradually lifted. You can read more information about upcoming service changes and the plan for transit moving forward in the Metro Matters blog.
UW IHME Releases Updated COVID-19 Models
IHME has released updated COVID-19 models that project out until October 1st. The models are projecting a potential second wave, both in Washington and many other states. You can read more at this KOMO story and check out the models for yourself here.
King County Case Update
Today, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 60 new cases, bringing the total in King County to 8,644. In addition, Public Health reported 0 new deaths keeping the total in the county at 571.
Stay In. Stay Healthy. Stay Strong.
Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember
Washington trivia answers: Established in 1845, Lewis County is our state’s oldest county. The smallest county is San Juan County (179 square miles) and the largest county is Okanogan County (5,300 square miles).