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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:

Today’s update includes a note about the Horsing Racing Industry, the induction of Felix Hernandez to the Seattle Mariners Hall of Fame, Christopher Cho’s medical support work in rural America, the King County Fire Marshal’s Burn Ban, Best Starts for Kids’ upcoming Learning Opportunities, the enrollment rates in local Community Colleges, gas prices, crime and health updates, and more.

Washington Trivia

This Edmonds baker is behind the recipe of the world’s most famous cinnamon rolls, sold by a large American chain whose first store opened at SeaTac Mall (now known as The Commons) in Federal Way. Who is she?
(Answer is at the bottom).

Recognizing the Horse Racing Industry

When I presented Michael Alhadeff with the trophy his brother Kenny’s horse won in the 88th running of the Longacres Mile, I was reminded that horse racing in Washington is all about families.

As the Honorary Steward for this race, I noted that hundreds of jobs and millions of tax dollars are generated by horse racing, and it was an honor to see so many familiar faces from both tracks. We are all indebted to Joe Gottstein, Ron Crockett and now the Muckleshoot Tribe for supporting the great industry of horse racing in Washington.

With Michael Alhadeff, Emerald Downs Founder Ron Crockett and his wife Wanda Crockett, and current Emerald Downs President Phil Ziegler

Felix Hernandez Joins Seattle Mariners Hall of Fame

While Felix Hernandez was inducted into the Mariners Hall of Fame, it should also be the Hall of Loyalty for his 418 starts in 15 seasons, starting on August 4th, 2005. While the 2010 Cy Young Award and the August 15, 2012, perfect game against Tampa Bay were highlights, every game King Felix pitched in was memorable for the King’s Court. All Rise!! Go M’s!

Christopher Cho’s Clinical Work in Rural America

While our work is based on policies and programs, it is the people we work with who make the difference. It was great catching up with my former intern, Christopher Cho, and his father, Willie, over lunch. Chris edited our Health Resource Guide during COVID, and is now preparing for medical school by assisting people living in rural America with their clinical needs.

With Christopher Cho and his dad Willie Cho in Federal Way

King County Fire Marshal Issues Burn Ban

On August 15th, King County Fire Marshal Chris Ricketts issued a Stage 2 burn ban for unincorporated King County. The ban prohibits all outdoor recreational fires. Outdoor cooking and heating appliances are restricted to approved manufactured gas and charcoal units only. Read more here.

Best Starts Learning Opportunities: School Partnership Workshops

Best Starts for Kids (BSK) will have two learning opportunities open to both BSK partners and organizations not currently funded by BSK. The following two workshops are most appropriate for the staff and leadership teams of CBOs and school districts that have partnerships together.

1. Designing and Planning a Collaborative Partnership
September 14th, 10:00-11:00 am | RSVP Here

2. Mapping Your School and Community Partnership Ecosystem
August 31st, 10:00 am-12:00 pm | RSVP Here
September 19th, 10:00 am -12:00 pm | RSVP Here

Enrollment Rates at Local Community Colleges

According to the Washington Office of Financial Management, demographic pressures on higher education have been strong since the children of Baby Boomers reached college age. While most institutions have experienced declining enrollment, with the University of Washington being the exception, the bulk of that decline has been in the community and technical colleges.

This Enrollment Data Dashboard from the Washington Community and Technical Colleges’ website provides a snapshot of student headcounts and full-time equivalents in community and technical colleges in Washington from academic years 2010 up to present.

Non-Profit Corner

Donations for Maui Residents

Maui County has listed links to organizations accepting donations to benefit Maui residents affected by fires.

South King County Non-Profit Organizations

Auburn Food Bank 

Auburn Valley Humane Society 

Bloodworks Northwest 

Federal Way Kiwanis

Federal Way Senior Center

FUSION Décor Boutique

Multi-Service Center Food Bank  

The Salvation Army 

Crime and Law Enforcement 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.

To report illegal street racing in your neighborhood, dial 911.

For a detailed 2022 end-of-year law enforcement officers fatalities report, 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.

Washington Gas Prices Remain as One of the Highest in the Nation

Washington remains as one of the states with the highest gas prices in the nation, second to California. Just in June, Washington dethroned California as the state with the most expensive gasoline, exceeding $5 a gallon.

As of Monday August 22nd, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded in Washington was sitting at $5.04 per gallon statewide, which is $1.18 per gallon higher than the national average of $3.86 per gallon. It is also $1.73 per gallon above the nation’s least expensive fuel cost of $3.31 per gallon, currently paid by Mississippi residents.

Some experts believe that there is a legislative component to Washington’s surge in fuel cost, specifically the new carbon-pricing program launched this year. Read more in the Center Square article here.

This reflects the price by gas grade as of August 22nd on AAA.com.

Health Updates

Dealing with Wildfire Smoke

As our state continues to deal with wildfire smoke this week, the Washington Department of Health encourages people to stay inside and away from pollution when air quality levels become unhealthy. Keeping windows and doors closed and using an indoor high-efficiency HEPA filter can help keep indoor air as clean as possible. This King 5 News article has information on how to make an air filter for your home to help clean the air during this wildfire season.

King County COVID-19 Case Update

Yesterday, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 82 daily average positive cases, bringing the total in King County to 565,492. In addition, Public Health reported 0.3 daily average deaths, bringing the total in the county to 3,605.

For more information on the latest data, 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 206-477-3977, press option 3.

For veterans: Call 1-800-698-2411 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: If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available. Call or text 988 or chat https://988lifeline.org/ to reach the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.

Find your King County Council district here.

With best wishes,

Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember

Washington trivia answer:

Jerilyn Brusseau from Edmonds is the baker behind the world-famous cinnamon roll sold by Cinnabon. She grew up making cinnamon rolls with her grandmother, who baked pies for restaurants in her small Montana town. When Jerilyn and her then-husband transformed a former Shell station into Brusseau’s in 1978, she feared her grandmother’s cinnamon rolls would be too ordinary among other pastries, not knowing that the cinnamon rolls would soon have a fan base that reached Seattle.

The first Cinnabon opened on December 4, 1985, in Federal Way at SeaTac Mall, now called The Commons. Owners Rich Komen and Ray Lindstrom wanted to create the perfect cinnamon roll. When a cook called in sick, Jerilyn got a call from Komen who asked: “Hey Jerilyn, how’d you like to make the world’s greatest cinnamon roll?”

When Jerilyn picked up the phone that day, she had no idea that her cinnamon rolls would ultimately become a national brand with 1,200 franchised locations in 48 countries. Today, Cinnabon is based in Atlanta, across the country from its former home on Lake Union, but the Bellevue Square location still mixes its own dough (most franchises use frozen).

Photo source: SeattleMet.com (Kyle Johnson)

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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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