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King County seeks public input for next Strategic Plan
King County government would like to invite all 2 million people in the region to visit www.OneKingCounty.info to provide input on the next iteration of the Strategic Plan, which will shape the future of county government over the next five years.
"I’m excited to gather the opinions and insights that will help guide the future of county government," said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “Our goal is to create an environment where everyone has the opportunity to thrive, and public input is critical to understanding how.”
In the past, King County has held in-person meetings to gather public input. While effective, these meetings only reach a small percentage of the population, and King County wants to engage as many people as possible. The interactive website www.OneKingCounty.info has been designed to be a shared conversation between local government and the residents of King County. Using a platform called Mind Mixer, residents are able to add ideas, support good ideas that have been submitted, and share ideas with friends using social media.
“There are two million people within King County who have individual voices, goals and ideas. This process will give many of those people the opportunity to speak directly to the officials who work for them,” said King County Council Chair Larry Gossett.
In addition to the interactive website, which people can access from a desktop, smartphone or tablet, King County will host seven workshops throughout the county. Whether people choose to participate online or in-person, feedback can be submitted online through Nov. 30, 2013. Ideas will then move into action, and King County is committed to making sure residents know how their input is informing the Strategic Plan.
Among the questions and areas King County will explore for the updated plan are:
• What do you most appreciate about living in King County?
• What challenges have you experienced living in King County?
• What are your "big ideas" to help move King County forward?
Much has changed since King County adopted its first Strategic Plan in 2010. The region is still dealing with the after-effects of a deep recession, vital funding for roads and transit is in flux, and the Affordable Care Act will make more than 180,000 King County residents eligible for health care coverage early next year.
Changes like these, and many others, require King County to update the Strategic Plan. Feedback from residents is vital to ensuring that everyone has a voice in future programs and services.
Access for everyone
King County has partnered with the King County Library System and other organizations to make sure everyone has access to the technology needed to participate in this project. Instructions for participating on www.OneKingCounty.info are available at the following locations:
§ Multi-Service Center, 1200 S. 336th, Federal Way
§ YWCA Learning Center at Greenbridge, 9720 8th Ave. SW, Seattle
§ El Centro de la Raza, 2524 16th Avenue South, Seattle
§ Refugee Women's Alliance (ReWA), 4008 Martin Luther King Jr. Way, Seattle
§ Literacy Source, 720 N 35th St, Suite 103, Seattle
In addition to the website, King County will host in-person workshops at seven locations around the county. With the exception of the Vashon workshop, all sessions will run from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.
§ Tuesday, Oct. 22 Shoreline Community College
16101 Greenwood Ave N, Shoreline
§ Thursday, Oct. 24 Bellevue Community College
14673 NE 29th Pl, Bellevue
§ Monday, Oct. 28 WorkSource of Renton
500 SW 7th St., Ste. 100, Renton, WA 98057
§ Tuesday, Oct. 29 Snoqualmie City Hall
38624 SE River St., Snoqualmie
§ Wednesday, Oct. 30 Courthouse Square (6:30 – 8:30 p.m.)
19021 Vashon Highway SW, Vashon
§ Tuesday, Nov. 5 Green River Community College
12401 SE 320th St, Auburn
§ Wednesday, Nov. 6 Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute
104 17th Ave S, Seattle
To ensure that everyone is fairly heard, King County officials will also meet with community members who speak Spanish, Vietnamese, Russian, Somali, and Chinese to gather input on the Strategic Plan and the county's future. Participants will be invited by local organizations that are hosting the meetings, including the Refugee Women’s Alliance (ReWA), Asian Counseling and Referral Services, Somali Community Services Coalition, El Centro de la Raza, and Casa Latina.
For more information about the updated Strategic Plan project, email OneKingCounty@kingcounty.gov or call 206-263-1182. A Public Service Announcement about the public comment period is available here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gT6NUQ74THg&feature=em-share_video_user