Road crews are essential

Governor Jay Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order, listed road maintenance and construction as essential infrastructure activities.

Crews use a vacuum truck to clean debris and standing water from a roadside drain. Cleaning out the drains help prevents them from flooding during rainy weather and
removing the solids from catch basins keeps dangerous pollutants out of fish bearing streams, protecting the health of our water systems.

“Our road maintenance crews keep roads and bridges in unincorporated King County safe and usable,” said Road Services Division Director Rick Brater.

“Delaying their work could cause immediate safety hazards as well as long-term deficiencies in the county’s road and bridge system. Catching up on delayed maintenance work in the future might be difficult or impossible, resulting in degraded road conditions and safety problems,” Brater said.

Delaying even routine maintenance tasks can have serious impacts on safety. Roadside mowing, for example, keeps vegetation from blocking visibility at intersections or driveways. Crews also keep areas safe and clear, and recently retrieved a discarded freezer from a roadside that could have posed a danger to curious neighborhood children, pedestrians, or other traffic.

Road Services is continuing to do its part to help reduce the spread of #COVID19, while actively protecting the health and safety of our workers and keeping our roads and bridges in unincorporated King County safe and usable.

Division One Roads Maintenance team observes social distancing.

Crews are following public health guidance while doing their work. They’re avoiding close contact with one another, typically driving one person per vehicle; using gloves as needed; and following enhanced cleaning practices for shared tools, equipment, and vehicles.

We ask the public to please stay clear of crews who are working on roadsides or in their vehicles. It’s important for their safety and yours to observe social distancing and allow at least six feet of distance if you need to speak to a maintenance worker.

Road Services maintenance crews performing snow removal work in Skykomish.

To learn more, visit the Road Services page.

Call us for help with road maintenance and traffic safety issues in unincorporated King County, such as downed stop signs, signals that are out, or trees over the roadway — 24 hours a day at our 24/7 Road Helpline 206-477-8100 or 1-800-527-6237 (1-800-KC-ROADS)

For latest COVID-19 related news, visit kingcounty.gov/covid.

King County 2020 Community Service Area grants awarded

King County announced 45 volunteer-led community events and projects that will be expanded in unincorporated communities with grants of up to $5,000 each.

Learn more about our Community Service Grants on the Local Services website.

The community groups successfully competed for a total of $92,500 in grants, which range between $500 and $4,750 each. Community organizations are required to match at least one quarter of the total project costs. The projects must be accessible to all residents, regardless of race, income, or language spoken.

Grants were awarded to community organizations throughout King County’s Community Service Areas. This year’s successful applications include:

  • Snoqualmie Valley Community Network—support for a youth leadership summit.
  • Skyway Solutions—support for a community festival.
  • Federal Way Senior Center—funds to buy 100 chairs for use at the center.
Continue reading King County 2020 Community Service Area grants awarded

Cleaning up: King County Conservation Corps update

The King County Conservation Corps is a partnership between King County’s Solid Waste Division, Department of Local Services, and Millionair Club Charity. Under the agreement, five-person crews provide services on weekdays in the urban unincorporated areas.

Watch Conservation Corps crews clean up graffiti and trash in White Center.
Continue reading Cleaning up: King County Conservation Corps update

FarmKingCounty.org offers resources for farming businesses

Running a farm business is complex. Thorough business planning may help you access financing to start your farm or diversify your farm as you grow your business. Many types of financing for farms (from grants to traditional bank loans) will have different requirements such as what they will cover, amount available, deadlines, or interest rates. Your business may need employees. Labor laws dictate what is allowable — from hiring family members who are children, to paying employees by the amount harvested — and what recordkeeping is required. And like any business, farms are required to pay taxes. However, farms are also eligible for tax benefits and exemptions.

Continue reading FarmKingCounty.org offers resources for farming businesses

Adult Beverage Ordinance sets rules for businesses

Pictured is a stock photograph of a someone pouring red wine into a glass at a tasting room.

King County’s Adult Beverage Ordinance 19030 went into effect on Jan. 3, 2020.

This ordinance updates development regulations related to all adult beverage businesses—including wineries, breweries, distilleries, and remote tasting rooms—in unincorporated King County.

This ordinance will help King County prepare for and support the future evolution of the adult beverage industry in the region. It better implements and complies with the policies of King County’s Comprehensive Plan, Growth Management Act, and countywide planning policies. Continue reading Adult Beverage Ordinance sets rules for businesses

Local Services’ 19: Top Accomplishments of 2019

What a first year!

Our goals were clear: create a department and begin delivering improved government services to the diverse residents and businesses of unincorporated King County.

We took that and ran with it, retooling how the county listens to residents, works collaboratively with them, and acts in their communities.

Here are 19 accomplishments we racked up in 2019: Continue reading Local Services’ 19: Top Accomplishments of 2019

Local Services’ first Economic Development Program Manager looks forward to helping businesses succeed in unincorporated King County

Hugo Garcia, King County Local Services' first Economic Development Program Manager, stands next to a map of King County.
Hugo Garcia, King County Local Services’ first Economic Development Program Manager

One of our goals at King County Local Services is to help our unincorporated communities thrive. This week, we took a big step in that direction as Hugo Garcia, our first Economic Development Program Manager, joined our team.

Hugo brings nearly 15 years of economic development experience, serving both rural and urban communities. He’s worked directly with small businesses during prosperous and tough economic times, and understands the dedication required to run a local business. Born in Guadalajara, Mexico, he immigrated to Seattle with his family in 1988. His father ran a restaurant here for years, which allowed Hugo to see first-hand the kinds of challenges small businesses face just to keep their doors open. Continue reading Local Services’ first Economic Development Program Manager looks forward to helping businesses succeed in unincorporated King County