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City News / Press Releases

Posted on: June 1, 2020

King County Not Yet Approved to Move to Next Safe Start Phase

Governor Jay Inslee’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy order expired on May 31st.  However, King county has not yet been approved to move into Phase 2 of the Safe Start – Washington Phased Reopening. Starting on June 1st, each County in WA may apply to move to the next phase, which is a “modified phase 1.”  

According to a King County press release, as of today, June 1st, King County has not yet submitted the application for the modified phase of the Safe Start reopening plan. Once submitted, it will likely take several days to be approved by the State.

Modified phase 1 could include phase 2 activities, modified as follows:

Recreation and fitness:

- Only allowed outdoor with 5 (not including the instructor) or fewer people outside of household

Gatherings

- Only allowed outdoor of 5 or fewer people outside the household

Additional construction

- As outlined in Phase 2 guidance

- Manufacturing operations

- As outlined in Phase 2 guidance

Real estate

- 25% of building occupancy.

- Indoor services limited to 30 minutes

In-store Retail

- 15% of building occupancy.

- Indoor services limited to 30 minutes

Personal Services

- 25% of building occupancy.

Professional services

- 25% of building occupancy.

- Indoor services limited to 30 minutes for customers

Photography

- As outlined in Phase 2 guidance

Pet grooming

- 25% of building occupancy.

Restaurants

- No indoor dining allowing.

- Outdoor dining is permitted but seating at 50% of existing outdoor capacity.

King County Executive Dow Constantine held a press conference immediately after the Governor’s press conference, and announced that King County would be applying to move into modified phase 1.

After moving into modified phase 1, according to the press release, “King County will continue monitoring progress over the course of two weeks, and if metrics are more stable and meeting the state’s criteria, more businesses and activities will reopen in accordance with Phase 2.”

On May 29th, North Bend Mayor Rob McFarland joined three other Snoqualmie Valley mayors in sending a letter to Governor Jay Inslee requesting to move to Phase 2 of the Safe Start recovery plan, ahead of other King County cities.

The letter states “Our cities have seen infection rates far lower than big cities in King County and we feel strongly that many of our small business can – and should – be able to open today, in advance of the remainder of King County.”

The letter further states, “We respectfully and strongly request that the Snoqualmie Valley be evaluated, and restrictions loosened separate from King county as a whole. We have all been meeting with our small businesses and know without a shadow of a doubt that the overwhelming majority can reopen safety, today, taking all recommended precautions, and many going even further.”

“Our administration is continually refining a plan for how we will “unwind” the actions taken under the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order,” North Bend Mayor Rob McFarland said. “I believe we are ready to enter Phase 2 and I’m hopeful the Governor and King County will move us to phase 2 very shortly so our businesses may start recovering from the economic impacts of the last few months.”

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