Tag Archives: Reprint

King County Will Forego Annual Count of Homeless Population

by Erica C. Barnett

(This article previously appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted with permission.)


Last week, the new King County Regional Homelessness Authority (KCRHA) announced that it will forego next year’s annual count of King County’s unsheltered homeless population, leaving the region without one major source of information about how many people are living unsheltered, and in what circumstances, for two consecutive years after last year’s count was scuttled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The count, which is generally regarded as an undercount, is often used to measure whether homelessness is increasing or decreasing over time and how; in 2020, for example, the count suggested a large increase in the number of people living in their vehicles.

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New BIPOC Business Weaves Diverse Arts, Culture, History Into Design

by Patranya Bhoolsuwan

(This article originally appeared on International Examiner and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


“We have often looked around and asked, ‘Where are the Black and Brown people working, and where are the Black and Brown clients?’ Because of this, we have been really intentional that our clientele represents who we are.”

This is more than just a business motto for Sonia Lynn-Abenojar and Sergio Max Legon-Talamoni, the cofounders of La Union Studio, an architecture, interior, and design consultancy. The (newly married) husband and wife team have taken their passion for architecture and design, along with their love for the diverse communities of the Pacific Northwest, to create a business that reflects who they are as individuals and entrepreneurs.

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Patti Cole-Tindall Announced as Interim King County Sheriff

by Paul Faruq Kiefer

(This article previously appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


Starting Jan. 1, King County will have a new interim sheriff: Patti Cole-Tindall, previously an undersheriff in the King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO), will assume the role until County Executive Dow Constantine appoints a permanent sheriff in mid-2022.

Last year, county voters approved a charter amendment that sets up a process for appointing, rather than electing, the King County sheriff. Tindall will be King County’s first appointed sheriff in more than two decades.

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In Reversal, Council Keeps Durkan’s Expanded Police Budget Mostly Intact

by Paul Faruq Kiefer

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


The Seattle City Council voted Thursday, Nov. 19, to leave Mayor Jenny Durkan’s proposal for the Seattle Police Department’s (SPD) 2022 budget largely untouched, and, in the process, put an internal messaging battle — whether to attempt to make peace with SPD or repurpose dollars from the department’s budget in the future — in the spotlight.

The council’s decision to leave Durkan’s budget largely untouched was overshadowed by a dramatic last-minute press release from interim Seattle Police Chief Adrian Diaz, who inaccurately claimed that Council President Lorena González had proposed eliminating more than 100 officers’ jobs. In reality, González’s amendment would have eliminated 101 positions that SPD doesn’t expect to fill in 2022. While Durkan’s budget has already redistributed the unspent salaries for other purposes in 2022, the amendment would have allowed the council to repurpose more than $17 million in future years.

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‘Week Without Driving’ Challenges Leaders to Reimagine Transit and Accessibility

by Ashley Archibald

(This article originally appeared on Real Change and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


Rebecca Saldaña and her kids had a choice.

It was Wednesday. One of the children had a dance class in Burien. The other had a taekwondo class in the Mt. Baker neighborhood. That’s a lot of back and forth.

Without a car, it was pretty difficult to get to both. Fortunately, the kids took pity on Saldaña. Rather than take the bus from the South End to Burien and back to Mt. Baker, her daughter chose to forgo a dance class.

“We are simplifying our day,” Saldaña said.

Not so simple for an elected official, of course. Saldaña still needed to make it home for a community meeting.

Saldaña, along with more than 100 other elected officials and transportation professionals, participated in a “Week Without Driving,” an event created by the Disability Mobility Initiative (DMI) — a project of Disability Rights Washington — to show the difficulties that non-drivers face in a state and country planned around cars.

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Getting Out the Vote: Local Organizations Rallying Historically Marginalized Groups

by Ashley Archibald

(This article originally appeared on Real Change and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


Voters in Seattle and King County are gearing up for the end of the electoral season, a lengthy — and expensive! — period in which candidates try to convince the public that they are the right person to lead government for the next four years.

Candidates have serious competition for voters’ attention and zeal for the democratic process. That’s particularly true in the region’s odd-year election cycle, which means the public rolled from the drama of the 2020 national campaign straight into local elections, which are arguably as consequential but don’t tend to command the same degree of participation.

But elections have consequences, and local organizations have been working overtime to not just encourage people to register to vote and fill out their ballots but be informed when they do it. That’s even more challenging this year than usual because of the pandemic, which limited groups’ abilities to engage in traditional “get-out-the-vote” activities.

However, where there’s a will, there’s a way.

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SPD’s 2022 Budget Proposal Relies on Optimistic Hiring Projections

by Paul Faruq Kiefer

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


The Seattle Police Department’s (SPD) staffing goals for 2022 are extremely ambitious and could leave the department with millions in unspent salaries, according to a staff presentation to the City Council’s Budget Committee on Friday, Oct. 15.

More than 300 sworn officers have left the department since January 2020. In 2022, SPD hopes to begin replenishing its ranks, starting with the restoration of 31 paid positions that the council eliminated last year. That proposal would leave SPD with a total of 1,357 funded officer positions, but the department can’t realistically fill all of those positions in a year; instead, SPD estimates that it would end 2022 with 134 vacancies.

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The Native History of Indigenous Peoples’ Day

by Malinda Maynor Lowery

(This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.)


Increasingly, Columbus Day is giving people pause.

More and more towns and cities across the country are electing to celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day as an alternative to — or in addition to — the day intended to honor Columbus’ voyages.

Critics of the change see it as just another example of political correctness run amok — another flashpoint of the culture wars.

As a scholar of Native American history — and a member of the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina — I know the story is more complex than that.

The growing recognition and celebration of Indigenous Peoples’ Day actually represents the fruits of a concerted, decades-long effort to recognize the role of Indigenous people in the nation’s history.

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Durkan Budget Would Gut JumpStart Spending Plan, Increase Funding for Encampment Response

by Erica C. Barnett

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted with permission.)


Mayor Jenny Durkan released the final budget of her term yesterday, Sept. 27, outlining the proposal at a very high level in a six-minute speech from North Seattle College. In the coming weeks, the proposal will be debated, analyzed, and rewritten by the Seattle City Council (the addition of 35 net new police officers is an obvious target for their red pens), and PubliCola will be covering every aspect of those upcoming discussions. For now, though, here are a few initial notes on the plan, which reflects better-than-expected revenues and incorporates a lot of ongoing federal funding for COVID-19 relief.

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City Reaches Agreement With Unions on Vaccine Mandates; SPOG Agreement Still to Come

by Paul Faruq Kiefer

(This article originally appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)


On the evening of Thursday, Sept. 23, a coalition of Seattle City employee unions reached a tentative agreement with the City of Seattle about the enforcement of the City’s new mandatory vaccination policy. The agreement, which outlines rules for vaccination exemptions and offers paid time off for vaccinated employees, now needs the approval of both the unions’ membership and the City Council. Union members will vote on the agreement this weekend.

On Friday, Sept. 24, both Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and City labor leadership heralded the agreement as a key victory in the City’s fight to control the spread of COVID-19. Karen Estevenin, the executive director of PROTEC17, which represents employees across multiple City departments, told PubliCola the union coalition didn’t object to the vaccine mandate itself but wanted to give City employees a hand in shaping how the mandate will play out in their workplace.

“One of the key benefits of having a union is that workers have a voice on policy changes that affect their workplaces and their livelihoods,” she said. “By negotiating the terms of the vaccine mandate, we wanted to ensure that this was a fair, transparent, and equitable policy for all City employees.”

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