February 2013

Unincorporated Area Community News

Welcome to Community News, King County government's monthly newsletter for unincorporated area residents. You can find the newsletter online with links to program details, at www.kingcounty.gov/UnincorporatedAreaNews. To see previous versions of the Unincorporated Area Community Newsletter visit the archives.


Feb. 13
West Hill Community Association Board meeting

Feb. 18
Vashon-Maury Island Community Council General meeting

Feb. 20
Four Creeks UAC meeting

Feb 27
Free fair housing workshop and seminar

March 4
Greater Maple Valley
Area Council meeting

March 23
Family Forest Expo

Engage with King County

Renton bus service changes
Before launching the RapidRide F Line, King County Metro Transit is seeking additional rider feedback on proposed changes to three bus routes in the Renton area intended to serve more riders more efficiently. Metro is considering discontinuing Route 110, adjusting the path for Route 909 and converting Route 155 to Dial-A-Ride Transit (DART) service. Last fall, Metro received comments from more than 100 riders on these concepts and others, and has since incorporated public feedback. Riders can comment on these proposals through Feb. 15.

Free fair housing workshop and seminar
The civil rights agency partnership Fair Housing Partners  is hosting two, free fair housing trainings at the Jackson Federal Building in Seattle, Feb. 27: Introduction to Fair Housing Workshop (9 a.m. to noon) and Advanced Fair Housing Seminar (1-3 p.m.). For details, directions and to register, visit the Office of Civil Rights website.   

Family Forest Expo March 23 in Auburn
Join us on March 23 at Green River Community College in Auburn for a hands-on, interactive educational event for families who own forestland in Washington. This is a great opportunity to learn how to gain more benefits from your family forest no matter where it is located in the state. For more information or to register, click here.


State of the County
King County Executive Dow Constantine delivered his annual State of the County address, Feb. 4 at the Museum of History and Industry. In his speech, Executive Constantine outlined several issues of interest to residents of unincorporated King County in the Community Service Areas. These include protecting more farmland, strengthening support for the County’s dynamic agriculture industry, and finding a permanent solution to roads and transit funding from the Legislature. To watch or read the address, please visit the website.

Agriculture Drain tiles
Do you need help draining your fields? An ordinance under consideration by the King County Council would simplify regulations related to replacement of drain tiles on local farms. The Stormwater Services Section in the Water and Land Resources Division will provide technical assistance to farmers to help you determine what is needed to improve the drainage of your fields. For more information, email brian.sleight@kingcounty.gov or call 206-296-1900.

Youth Sports Facilities grants
The King County Youth Sports Facilities GrantProgram provides matching grant funds ranging from $5,000 to $75,000 to renovate or build public sports amenities in partnership with public agencies, such as school districts or city parks departments, in neighborhoods across the county. Applications are now being accepted from qualified groups. For more information, please visit the website or contact program manager Butch Lovelace at 206-263-6267 or butch.lovelace@kingcounty.gov.

Fern Box, Kathleen Frugé-Brown

Funding opportunities for cultural activities
4Culture, King County’s Cultural Services Agency, has announced 2013 funding opportunities for residents in unincorporated areas. Each year, King County residents and groups can apply for financial support of their art, preservation and heritage projects, festivals, exhibits, cultural facilities and landmarked properties. Applications are reviewed by a peer panel based on posted guidelines and criteria. For more information on opportunities and deadlines, visit 4Culture’s calendar. Free, public application workshops are available.

King County surface water management fee rates increase in 2013
Stormwater runoff is ranked as the number-one source of toxic pollution to Puget Sound, its rivers and streams. Every time it rains or snows, water runs off roofs, pavement, and packed soils, picking up pollutants from car oil, animal feces, pesticides, and debris, and causing flooding, erosion and other drainage problems. Rigorous new state standards require all of us to do more to prevent runoff and restore the damage it generates. As a result, you may see an increase in the surface water management (SWM) fee that appears on your annual property tax statement. For more information, visit the website.

King County Department of Assessments
The property tax picture King County is mixed for 2013. Some property owners will see their property values decline while taxes increase, and other property owners will see both increase. The first half of 2013 tax payments are due April 30. To view tax information or to make payment, please visit the website. For questions on your property’s values, please visit the Assessor’s homepage.

Earth Heroes at School
King County wants to honor the very best students, teachers, staff, school volunteers, programs and even entire schools that are contributing to student environmental education and environmental protection, through the County’s Earth Heroes at School awards program. Nominations for the 2013 Earth Heroes at School are due Feb. 23. Winners will be honored at an event featuring King County Executive Dow Constantine on April 25, during the County’s annual Earth Week celebration. For more information, visit the website.

Wastemobile: Household hazardous waste disposal
Make a clean start to the new year by safely disposing of old car batteries, oil, solvents and other household hazardous waste through a program that is available to all King County residents at no charge. The Local Hazardous Waste Program in King County provides a year-round household hazardous waste service at the Auburn SuperMall, 1101 SuperMall Way, Auburn, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday. The roving Wastemobile travels to cities throughout King County from spring through fall.

Get fit and have fun with the King County Parks Fitness Challenge
Get moving for your health and discover new activities by taking part in the Parks Fitness Challenge powered by Group Health. This challenge is fun, family friendly and most activities are free. With 30 possible Parks Fitness Challenge activities to choose from, you're sure to find a variety of activities that will motivate you to get out and get healthy. Watch this video and get started with the Parks Fitness Challenge

King County Parks fourth-annual Big Backyard 5K June 2
Register for the Big Backyard 5K presented by Group Health in support of King County Parks! The race will be held on Sunday, June 2 at King County’s Marymoor Park. Register as an individual or team for this dog and stroller friendly event. All proceeds benefit King County Parks. For more information and to register, visit the event website.


Get a flu shot
Flu is still making a big impact here in the Pacific Northwest and it’s not too late to get a flu shot. To learn more about influenza and who’s most at risk for serious illness visit the website.

It’s never too early to register to vote
What better way to celebrate Presidents’ Day than to foster democracy? Register to vote! It’s easy online or by mail. Be sure to register before the deadline for the special election on April 23.

Look into King County’s history on Pinterest
Interested in local history? King County Archives has thousands of historical photos and documents in its collections. Find your favorites and share them online with your friends on Pinterest. Archives has placed dozens of photos and documents on Pinterest, including old maps, historic event pictures, architectural photos and much more. Check them out today.

Foster pet parents needed
Open your heart and your home to dogs or puppies, and cats or kittens that need to get well or get bigger before they can be adopted. Sick animals heal faster in a stress-free environment, and your home could be the perfect place for pets to get the one-on-one attention and the love they need. For more information, visit the Regional Animal Services of King County webpage.

Community news

Four Creeks

Four Creeks Unincorporated Area Council meeting

Feb. 20, 7 p.m., at the May Valley Alliance Church, 16431 SE Renton-Issaquah Rd. in Renton

Greater Maple Valley

Greater Maple Valley Unincorporated Area Council

(This item submitted by the GMVUAC)
The area council discussed progress made by the Ravensdale Park Foundation, a group of local residents and organizations working with King County Parks, to design and facilitate upgrades and enhancements to the park through a multi-phase, multi-year plan. Phase one upgraded two ball fields. Phase two, now underway, is adding two multi-purpose fields.

Greater Maple Valley Area Council meeting

March 4, 7 p.m., at the Fire Station, 231st St and SR-169 in Maple Valley

Vashon-Maury Island

Vashon-Maury Island Community Council General meeting

Feb. 18, 7 p.m., McMurray Middle School, Multi-purpose room, 9329 Southwest Cemetery Road, Vashon

West Hill

West Hill Community Association Board meeting

Feb. 13, 7 p.m., Fire District #20, 12424 76th Ave S., Seattle

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If you have comments or suggestions about future content, please contact Alan Painter at 206-296-8734 or alan.painter@kingcounty.gov.