Today’s update includes information on my recent visit to Federal Way High School, a King County Elections update, an opportunity to serve on the King County WaterWorks Grant Ranking Committee, available funding and grants from the state, health updates, and more.
How did Issaquah get its name?
(Answer is at the bottom).
Federal Way High School Awarded King County “Get Active, Stay Active” Grant
Earlier this week, I met with Federal Way High School Boys Basketball Coach Yattah Reed and Principal Dr. Matt Oberst to talk about the $15,000 “Get Active, Stay Active” grant for the Federal Way High School Boys and Girls Basketball teams that will help provide new equipment in the school gym.
With Federal Way High School Principal Dr. Matt Oberst and Boys Basketball Coach Yattah Reed.
King County Elections Update
Ballot Turnout. As of yesterday, King County Elections has an estimated 1,230,000 ballots in their Renton headquarters, which is equivalent to an estimated 86% turnout.
Results. King County Elections posted a record-breaking 1,033,486 results on Election night compared to their previous record in 2016 which was 615,000.
Drop Boxes. The early ballot returns resulted in a much quieter day than King County Elections planned for. All boxes were locked promptly at 8:00pm.
Vote Centers. King County Elections was able to help nearly 6,400 voters on Election Day at their new Vote Center locations.
WaterWorks Grant Ranking Committee Vacancy
King County Boards and Commissions is currently recruiting a representative from King County District 7 to serve on the WaterWorks Grant Ranking Committee, which is responsible for reviewing, ranking and making recommendations for funding through the WaterWorks competitive grant program. WaterWorks funds projects that improve water quality in King County. Committee members must live in Pacific, Algona or Auburn. If interested in seeking an appointment, please fill out this application.
For more information, please contact Elizabeth Loudon, WaterWorks Grant Manager, at email@example.com or 206-477-4297. Candidates must be nominated by the Councilmember and may work directly with the Councilmember offices.
COVID-19 relief grants now open for nonprofit organizations
The Washington State Department of Commerce is partnering with Philanthropy Northwest to provide $2 million of relief funding from the federal CARES Act with a focus on community-based nonprofits and Tribal organizations most impacted by COVID-19. This is a short opportunity – grant applications are due tomorrow, November 6th. The full news release includes links to the application materials and how to find technical and translation assistance, and can be found here.
Washington COVID-19 Immigrant Relief Fund
The application for the Washington COVID-19 Immigrant Relief Fund is now open. Immigrants who are experiencing financial hardship and are not eligible for federal financial relief or unemployment insurance are eligible to receive a one-time direct payment of $1,000 or up to $3,000 per household. Call 1-844-724-3737 for help with your application. Support is available in multiple languages. Read more about it here.
COVID-19 surges as fall arrives
COVID-19 is surging across the country, hitting the highest daily number of positive cases since the pandemic began. Hospital systems are beginning to reach maximum capacity. While Washington may be doing better than many states, we are not immune from this trend and are at a very high risk through the winter months for further COVID-19 spread. But we know what we need to do:
• Get a flu shot.
• Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer often.
• Stay home if you’re sick or if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19.
• Wear your cloth face covering, even with people you see regularly and in your smallest social circles.
• Keep gatherings very small and hold them outside whenever possible. Check out the new guidance and checklist for safer gatherings.
• Remember to practice compassion during this time for yourself and others.
Travel considerations during the holidays
The Thanksgiving holiday is traditionally the busiest travel time of the year for individuals and families, but we are amid an increasing COVID-19 surge. Travel increases your chances of getting and spreading COVID-19, so staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. If you decide you must travel during the fall, you should review the recently updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Travel during the COVID-19 Pandemic, which includes tips on what to do before, during, and after travel.
Weekly King County Public Health Update: Colorectal screenings should start at age 45
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, an independent panel of national medical experts, recently posted a draft recommendation that colorectal cancer screenings should begin at age 45. This aligns with the American Cancer Society’s age recommendation but departs from the current CDC guideline that screenings start at age 50. The draft recommendation is currently open to public comment and, if finalized, will most likely influence preventive patient care policy and insurance coverage for the screenings.
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths of men and women in Washington state. Furthermore, emerging data shows an increasing rate of colorectal cancer in younger people, ages 45 - 49, who often have advanced disease at time of diagnosis. Colorectal cancer does not always cause symptoms in its early stages, so the hope is that earlier screenings will result in earlier detection when treatment can be more effective. National and Washington State public health experts urge people to contact their healthcare providers about getting screened. For more information on colorectal cancer risk factors, prevention, symptoms, and screening criteria, click here.
King County Case Update
Today, Seattle – King County Public Health reported 517 new cases, bringing the total in King County to 29,465. In addition, Public Health reported 1 new death, bringing the total in the county to 810.
Stay In. Stay Healthy. Stay Strong.
Pete von Reichbauer
King County Councilmember
Washington trivia answer:
Located east of Lake Washington along Interstate-90, Issaquah was originally called Is Squak by local Native American settlers, which means sound or squawks of water birds. In the 1860s, the first white settlers arrived and had the first four official land patents in the area. According to the Secretary of State’s website, the four plots intersected at the present site of Front Street and Sunset Way, which was known then as Squak Valley.
In 1887, the railroad arrived with the efforts of Daniel Gilman. Coal mining prospered and brought rapid growth to the valley community. The town was then platted in 1888 and incorporated in April 1892 under the name Gilman, however in 1899, the Washington State Legislature changed the city’s name to Issaquah, an anglicized version of its original name.