New county initiative for unincorporated areas

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King County Executive Dow Constantine today announced that Senior Deputy Executive Fred Jarrett will take on a major new body of work, leading an initiative to explore new and better ways to serve the people of unincorporated King County.

About a quarter of a million people live in unincorporated King County, nearly as many as in the County’s second- and third-largest cities – Bellevue and Kent – combined. The initiative will study ways to improve how direct and contracted services – including roads, public safety, clean water, and increasing access to opportunity – are delivered in unincorporated areas even as the County’s General Fund revenues fall behind population growth and inflation due to revenue limitations imposed by the state.

“The people of our unincorporated urban and rural communities have unique needs, from maintaining long stretches of country roads to ensuring public safety across a vast territory,” said Executive Constantine. “With his long record of public service, Fred has the experience and strong community connections to lead our efforts to improve how we deliver services across departments and agencies. His expertise in innovation and accountability, and his understanding of our commitment to equity and social justice, will ensure King County government works at the highest level for every resident.”

“Unincorporated areas and cities with whom we contract services have their own priorities and challenges,” said Jarrett. “I look forward to working with our County departments and many community stakeholders to understand how we could make meaningful changes, and I look forward to getting them done.”

Previously a state senator, Jarrett served four terms in the state House of Representatives, after stints as Mercer Island Mayor and as a Mercer Island City Council and school board member. He also had a 35-year career at The Boeing Co.

“I am very excited to see the county take the next very important and vital step in its role as a local government provider for over 200,000 people,” said King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert. “This will allow us to be more precise in how and what services we deliver to our citizens. Then we will have the data to see how we can improve and provide even better quality services. This is a great step forward for county unincorporated areas.”

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3 Responses to “New county initiative for unincorporated areas”

  1. Question Mark Says:

    All I can say that Kathy Lambert has expressed satisfaction publicly that marijuana stores in unincorporated King County have been concentrated exclusively in the White Center and Skyway areas. I believe that she will continue to fight hard for an advantage in her community, even if it means a disadvantage to other unincorporated communities …

  2. Hey Question Mark; why don’t you do something useful and work to implement a plan to ban single can high octane $1 alcohol products from White Center markets, like they do in San Deigo. It helps reduce street inebriation. Now that would be useful, unlike your constant whining about pot stores. You are what they call in Texas, ‘all hat’.

    Mark Ufkes (who doesn’t hide behind a blog name).

  3. Captain obvious Says:

    Maybe work with the king county or even the state of Washington on making the sale of glass tubes typically use for smoking crack,meth and hard drugs. Illegal to sell in these communities.

    Also making laws for more prison time for car prowling shop lifting pan handling and other crimes associated with hard drugs use.