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King County Councilmember Pete von Reichbauer
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Dear Friends:

Today’s update includes news about a grant awarded to Steel Lake Little League, the Department of Local Services’ successful virtual town hall, the upcoming Small Business Assistance Grant application deadline, and more.

Washington Trivia

When was the incorporation of Covington, Washington?

(Answer is at the bottom).

Steel Lake Little League Awarded King County “Get Active, Stay Active” Grant

Congratulations to the Steel Lake Little League on being awarded an $11,000 grant to address equipment needs and finance facility improvements at the South County Ballfields. I remember when the South County Ballfields were dedicated more than 20 years ago, and am glad that King County is continuing to partner with community organizations who are able to use the fields year after year.

With Josh Zellmer of Steel Lake Little League

Department of Local Services’ Virtual Town Hall

On September 8th, I had the opportunity to join a virtual town hall open house hosted by the Department of Local Services (DLS) for residents in the unincorporated areas of East Federal Way. Department leaders from King County Elections, the King County Sheriff’s Office, King County Parks, the King County Assessor and representatives from other King County departments provided updates and answered questions addressing community concerns, specifically in the unincorporated areas. To those who would like to see the presentation and updates from King County leaders but missed the virtual forum, you may watch the recorded version of the forum on DLS’s Facebook page.

Small Business Assistance Grant for Businesses in Unincorporated King County

Businesses in unincorporated King County may apply for a Small Business Assistance Grant through September 11th. These grants are for businesses that have been hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic and are located in unincorporated parts of King County (outside of cities). The updated requirements mean more businesses are potentially eligible for grant money than during the first round.

Visit kingcounty.gov/LocalBusinessHelp for more information or call 206-331-3275 (Relay 711) and leave a voicemail with your contact information and question. A technical services coach will call you back within two business days. If you need an interpreter, please also name the language you prefer when you leave your message. The technical assistance coach will have an interpreter on the line when they call you back.

World War Bonsai: Remembrance and Resilience

The Pacific Bonsai Museum has a special exhibition featuring World War Bonsai: Remembrance and Resilience now through October 2021.The exhibition offers safe, outdoor, engaging and educational experiences for local, regional, national and worldwide communities by highlighting little-known stories of the people who shared their art despite overwhelming hardships during World War II. To plan your visit and for more information, please visit the Pacific Bonsai Museum website.

Wildfire Prevention and Tips to Protect Yourself from Poor Air Quality

With the onset of several wildfires in the Puget Sound region earlier this week, the Washington state Department of Natural Resources is reemphasizing the steps our community can take to prevent wildfires.

• Be sure recreation vehicles have operating spark arrestors.
• Do not park vehicles in dry, grassy areas as residual heat from exhaust systems can ignite the dry grass.
• Know the current wildfire risk in your county, destination, or area you may be working in.
• Work in the mornings or late evenings to avoid the hottest parts of the day, and postpone your work when the weather calls for low humidity or high wind.
• Keep a water hose or bucket or fire extinguisher on hand.
• Use a nylon or plastic weed whacker line instead of metal.
• Be careful not to set a hot tool down on dry grass or leaves.
• Allow power engines to cool before refueling, and make sure the hot exhaust is kept away from dry grasses, weeds, and shrubs - only use such equipment that’s in good repair and has spark arresters installed when applicable.
• Stay home for an hour after finishing your work - this way you’ll be around to notice if anything begins to smolder and smoke.

Public Health Seattle – King County (PHSKC) also shared some tips on how to protect yourself and your loved ones from poor air quality due to wildfires.

Check the air quality forecast. Air quality conditions may change quickly. Go to Puget Sound Clean Air Agency’s website for the current smoke level report for King County. Their forecasts will let you know when air quality has reached unhealthy levels.
Stay indoors when air quality is at unhealthy levels. Avoid outdoor activity as much as possible when the air is smoky and unhealthy, especially strenuous exercise.
Keep indoor air clean. Close windows and doors as much as possible to prevent smoke from coming in. If you have air conditioning, set it to recirculate the air, or use a fan to help keep the space cooler. Avoid activities that increase pollutants inside the home or stir up particles, like smoking, using candles, or vacuuming.
Face coverings work well for COVID-19, but offer limited protection for smoke. Any mask or face covering should be used only as a last resort to protect against wildfire smoke. For more information, visit PHSKC’s website.

King County Case Update

As of yesterday, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 120 new cases, bringing the total in King County to 20,440. In addition, Public Health reported 7 new deaths, bringing the total in the county to 741.

Stay In. Stay Healthy. Stay Strong.

Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember

Washington trivia answer:

Originally called Jenkins Prairie, the city of Covington was incorporated on August 31, 1997. The area was rich for farming, aided by the sediments from a prehistoric mudflow that filled the valley. The Stkamish, Smulkamis, and Skopamish tribes first inhabited the area until a treaty was signed due to a conflict with the first European settlers who came to the area in the 1850s. The treaty resulted to the formation of the Muckleshoot Tribe as well as the foundation of the Muckleshoot Reservation.

According to HistoryLink, in the 1880s, the Northern Pacific Railroad commissioned Richard Covington, a surveyor, to develop a railroad line between Auburn and Kanasket. A stop was eventually named after Covington, and soon the area took on the name of the stop.

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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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