2008 County Council News
11 December 2008
Cooper Proposes Reducing
Car Allowance for Elected Officials
Declaring he had to stay true to the commitment he made during the recent budget deliberations, County Councilmember Mike Cooper has announced he will introduce an ordinance next week designed to save the county general fund nearly $40,000 by reducing the car allowance granted to some county elected officials by 55 percent -- half of the savings alone will come from the council members. See More
8 December 2008
Martha Lake Airport Community
Park Construction Bid Awarded
The Snohomish County Council has awarded the $3 million bid for the construction of Martha Lake Airport Community Park, 146th St, W, Lynnwood.
3 December 2008
County Council Approves Funding for Expanding Mental Health & Chemical Dependency Treatment Programs
Snohomish County will join many neighboring counties in offering significantly expanded mental health and chemical dependency treatment services funded by a one-tenth of one percent (0.01%) increase in the sales tax – 1¢ on a $10 purchase. The legislature authorized counties to impose the tax specifically for these services... See MORE
24 Nov. 2008
Council Approves 'Painful' 2009 County Budget
Universally lamenting the necessity for cutting jobs and reducing services in the face of declining revenues brought on by the widespread economic crisis, the Snohomish County Council has approved a 2009 general fund budget of $206.6 million. The council used a combination of expenditure reductions and revenue enhancements to close the $21 million gap that existed between the 2009 projected revenues and the cost to continue 2008 general fund services in 2009... See MORE
17 Nov. 2008
Council Chair Somers Presents Recommended Budget
"I present to the citizens of Snohomish County, my fellow Councilmembers, the County Executive, elected officials county wide and county employees my recommended budget for 2009. This budget has been crafted to respond to the unprecedented economic crisis that has engulfed our county, state, nation, and even the world..."
10 Nov. 2008
Council Approves Moving Corrections to Sheriff’s Office
Citing immediate personnel cost savings and administrative efficiencies, the county council has approved moving Snohomish County’s Corrections Department out from under County Executive Aaron Reardon’s oversight and into Sheriff John Lovick office as a sheriff’s bureau, effective Jan. 1, 2009.
22 Oct. 2008
Impossible to predict revenues in volatile economic climate
County Council Returns to Annual Budget
On the books for only seven months, Snohomish County’s first attempt to produce a biennial (two-year) budget has become a victim of the nation’s and the world’s economic crisis that have made it very difficult to accurately estimate future county revenues. The county council today voted 4-1 to approve an emergency ordinance repealing a previous ordinance approved March 27, 2008 that had put the county on track to create a two-year-cycle budget beginning in the 2009-2010 biennium.
20 Oct. 2008 Snohomish County continues to come to grips with the local impact of the nation’s economic crisis as it struggles to build a 2009 budget that anticipates a general fund revenue shortfall ranging from $21 to $30 million. “It’s very clear there’s no way we can avoid a large number of layoffs,” said County Council Chair Dave Somers. “The council’s goal is to confirm those numbers as quickly as we can, because we owe it to those employees to give them as long a lead as possible.”
County Budget’s Painful Bottom Line
3 Oct. 2008
Tune in to your government
County Council’s Public Budget Panels Start
Over the next four weeks the county council will hold a series of at least 10 public panel discussions leading up to the council’s formal adoption of the county’s 2009-2010 biennial budget in November. The public can attend these panel meetings or view them live on the web. These webcasts will also be archived and can be easily viewed anytime.
26 Sept. 2008
Public Invited to Comment on County Operations
The county council and county executive will jointly hold the biennial public hearing to receive public comments on the operations of all county departments. The hearing will be held Wed., Oct. 1, beginning at 11 a.m. in the Jackson Board Room on the eighth floor of the Robert J. Drewel Building on the county campus at 3000 Rockefeller Ave. in Everett.
19 Sept. 2008
Next Week’s County Budget Preparation Meeting
“The county council is hard at work preparing the county’s 2009-2010 biennium budget,” said Council Chair Dave Somers. “Last week, we decided to brake with tradition and go in a new direction. Instead of relying primarily on County Executive Aaron Reardon’s proposed budget,” said Somers, “we are producing the budget from scratch and in the open. Our process will be conducted in open meetings with everyone invited to attend. You can even watch the meetings live on the web.”
16 Sept. 2008
Cooper Proposes Moving County Corrections to Sheriff’s Office
Snohomish County Council Vice Chair Mike Cooper announced he will propose moving the county in the direction of thirty-five other Washington counties where corrections departments are managed by the elected sheriff rather than the county executive. The Snohomish County Corrections Department, under the executive branch, remains plagued by gross cost overruns that total in the millions of dollars, said Cooper.
15 Sept. 2008
Via Webform, E-Mail, Letter or Attend a Council Meeting
County Council Seeks Public’s Budget Priorities
The County Council encourages public participation in the preparation of Snohomish County’s first biennial budget for the years 2009 and 2010. Reaffirming their commitment to open, transparent government, the council continues to open new lines of communication, including a targeted web-based response form.
10 Sept. 2008
County Budget: Somers’ Proposes Council Start from Scratch
Snohomish County Council Chair Dave Somers announced he will propose the council adopt a from-scratch budget for the 2009-2010 biennium, rather than follow past councils’ practice of relying primarily on County Executive Aaron Reardon’s proposed budget.
8 Sept. 2008
County Council Approves Grant Funding Auto Theft Prevention Task Force
The County Council has approved an $827,185 state grant to create a multi-jurisdictional Auto Theft Prevention Task Force to implement a proactive enforcement and education campaign to put a dent in the large number of vehicles stolen annually in Snohomish County.
5 Sept. 2008
16,000+ Council Documents On Line
Council Enhances Government Transparency
Taking another major step to improve government transparency, the Snohomish County Council now offers convenient public access to electronic versions of all the council’s official documents dating back to 1980.
4 Sept. 2008
Large Turnout at First County Council Budget Forum Advocates for Public Health and Mental Health Funding
The Snohomish County Council has gone on the road to introduce local residents to the process of producing the county’s budget, to highlight the serious problems facing county finances, and to ask the public for their funding priorities as the county deals with declining revenues and increasing demands for services.
22 August 2008
Three County Budget Community Forums Scheduled
County Council Wants to Hear From Citizens
‘What are Your Priorities?’
Faced with declining revenues and the need to produce the county’s first two-year, biennium budget, the county council has scheduled three community forums early in September to solicit citizens’ priorities for county government.
14 August 2008
County Council Approves Countywide Hiring Freeze
The Snohomish County Council has unanimously approved a county-government-wide hiring freeze effective immediately. The action came in response to declining revenue projections that, according to the ordinance, “suggest that Snohomish County is likely to face budget constraints like those experienced by the State of Washington and other Washington counties.”
8 August 2008
Snohomish County and Wal-Mart Launch Expanded Effort to Save Energy with Efficient Light Bulbs
Snohomish County, in cooperation with Wal-Mart Stores, has launched an expanded program to encourage the use of compact energy and cost-efficient fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). Wal-Mart Stores recently donated 4,000 CFLs to the county, allowing many more low income residents to receive these efficient light bulbs.
5 June 2008
County Council Reaffirms Commitment Opposing Commercial Passenger Air Service at Paine Field
For the fourth time in almost 30 years, the Snohomish County Council has restated its opposition to commercial air passenger services operating from Paine Field, the county-owned airport located adjacent to south Everett, Mukilteo and Lynnwood.
7 May 2008
County Council, Executive Honor Herald’s Jim Haley
The Snohomish County Council and County Executive jointly approved a resolution honoring Jim Haley upon his retirement after 42 years with The Herald of Everett. The resolution notes that “Jim Haley has earned the well-deserved respect of our community over a long and storied career in the trenches of journalism with The Herald, covering every topic imaginable from sacrosanct to profane with equal aplomb and skill.”
30 April 2008
County Council Declares Support for
Aerospace Machinists and Workers
The Snohomish County Council joined the growing chorus of community leaders expressing their outrage over the U.S. military’s awarding of a vital U.S. Air Force air refueling tanker contract to the European-based Airbus consortium.
23 April 2008
6-Month Zoning Restriction
County imposes temporary zoning to protect mobile home parks
Seeking additional time to find a means to halt a growing low-income and senior citizen housing crisis caused by the continuing conversion of existing mobile home parks to more lucrative commercial uses, the Snohomish County Council voted unanimously to impose a temporary, new mobile home park zoning category on the approximately 53 such parks in the unincorporated county.
Link to new ordinance
22 April 2008
David Hambelton Appointed to County Planning Commission
The Snohomish County Council has approved the appointment of David Hambelton to a four-year term on the county Planning Commission. Hambelton will represent the second county council district. He is a resident of Everett and was nominated by County Councilmember Brian Sullivan.
27 March 2008
County Will Give Biennial Budgeting a Try
Taking its cue from a recent voter-endorsed Charter Review Commission recommendation, the county council today approved changing Snohomish County’s budgeting cycle from annual to biennial – once every two years – with the opportunity to make changes at the halfway point. The county’s first biennial budget technically goes into effect next year, although preparing the 2009-2010 budget begins almost immediately.
27 March 2008
County Council Clerk Honored
Kathryn Bratcher, Clerk of the Snohomish County Council, received the “President’s Award of Distinction” from the Washington Municipal Clerks Association (WMCA) at the group’s recent annual conference in Wenatchee. Bratcher is the first county municipal clerk to receive this award.
Gossett Offers Funding Plan for Regional Justice Center Construction
County Councilmember Dave Gossett today unveiled a funding plan for the construction of a long-planned Regional Justice Center.
March 19, 2008
County Council seeks solutions for
Mobile Home Park Conversion Crisis
Reacting to the pending closure of several large local mobile home parks, the county council today called for a fast-paced consideration of possible incentives and code changes to protect the mostly low-income senior citizen residents of these complexes.
March 12, 2008
Council Publishes 2008 Budget Summary
The budget summary document incorporates and reflects council policy priorities for 2008. Included in the document are summaries of council amendments to the proposed budget, budget notes and conditions imposed by the council through the budgeting process, department-by-department detailed budget summaries, and the ordinances and motions adopted concurrent to the budget.