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Dec. 15, 2022
Council pledges solidarity with women, girls, others protesting for freedom in Iran
"I am proud to stand with our local Iranian-American community and allies who support the unprecedented movement underway in Iran to support the fundamental human rights of the Iranian people — especially Iranian women and girls."

Sept. 1, 2022
Councilmembers Dunn, Dembowski, von Reichbauer introduce motion to oppose new airport in Enumclaw
"King County has worked for decades to protect the farmlands and open spaces of the Enumclaw Plateau. This is no place for a major new commercial airport."

Aug. 17, 2022
Council approves $5 million in funding for youth mental health
“It’s clear to any parent across this country and here in King County that the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated an existing youth mental health crisis. Many of the necessary steps to slow the spread of COVID-19 disproportionally harmed our young people. We’ve seen drastic increases in suicides, attempted suicides, and mental-health related ER visits. I am proud that the Council acted and look forward to expeditiously getting these funds into the community to help our young people.”

July 26, 2022
Free Youth Transit Passes Soon to Be Available Across King County
“As a middle schooler at Dimmitt Middle School in Skyway, I often took Metro home after end-of-day school activities. Finding money to pay the fare could be a hassle and too often a hardship for many of my classmates. I am so excited that today's King County kids will now be able to hop on board Metro transit to get to and from school and around the county to activities, without having to worry about whether there's enough money on their ORCA card. This important legislation will ensure that all kids in King County have the same, free, access to our transit system and help them become life-long transit riders on what will soon be a zero-emissions transit system.”

July 26, 2022
Council approves creation of permanent gun, ammo return program
“I am committed to doing everything I can to reduce gun violence in King County. Reducing the number of guns in circulation will reduce the number of accidents, injuries and deaths caused by guns. And we know from past experience that people welcome the opportunity to turn unwanted guns over to a responsible party for disposal. This program will make that resource available to residents countywide, and I’m hopeful that we can stand it up as soon as possible.”

June 7, 2022
Permanent gun, ammo return program focus of new legislation
“I am committed to doing everything I can to reduce gun violence in King County. Reducing the number of guns in circulation will reduce the number of accidents, injuries and deaths caused by guns. And we know from past experience that people welcome the opportunity to turn unwanted guns over to a responsible party for disposal. This program will make that resource available to residents countywide, and I’m hopeful that we can stand it up as soon as possible.”

May 24, 2022
Patti Cole-Tindall confirmed as King County Sheriff
“I look forward to working with Sheriff Cole-Tindall as she takes on this critical job at this critical time.”

May 10, 2022
Council declares Roe v. Wade ‘the law of the land,’ pledges support for reproductive freedom
The King County Council on Tuesday passed legislation declaring its support for reproductive freedom and that the Roe v. Wade decision, even if overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court, is the “law of the land” In King County. 

May 5, 2022
County ‘Penny for Pools’ grant brings $2 million to North King County
“In my time serving on the King County Council, one of the most frequent topics in my discussions with constituents is the urgent need for an aquatic center in North King County. For that reason, I was proud to author the ‘penny for pools' amendment in the King County Parks Levy. It is very exciting to see that amendment come to life with these historic investments in swimming pools and future aquatic facilities.”

April 19, 2022
King County Council unanimously votes to support Ukraine
"I’m proud of King County's initial response to support the people of Ukraine and the local Ukrainian community and I look forward to continuing this work in the weeks and months ahead."

April 6, 2022
King County legislation to support Ukraine passes committee with unanimous approval
"I’m proud of King County's initial response to support the people of Ukraine and the local Ukrainian community and I look forward to continuing this work in the weeks and months ahead"

March 15, 2022
Council approves plan to fight displacement, promote equity, social justice
“This legislation offers a new approach to making investments to support communities where needs are greatest. It empowers and centers the voices of community members who are on the ground, doing this work today to make decisions about how and where to invest resources to provide opportunities for housing, jobs, and community spaces...”

March 4, 2022
Council approves new green building standards that improve flexibility, enhance requirements for County buildings
“Reducing emissions from the built environment is one of the most impactful things we can do to address climate change. King County spends billions of dollars on infrastructure and this new law ensures that we will lead the way in reducing carbon emissions from our own projects. I am hopeful other jurisdictions will follow King County’s lead.”

March 1, 2022
Councilmembers Dunn and Dembowski introduce legislation to provide County support to Ukraine
“People all over the world have been inspired by the bravery and heroism of everyday Ukrainians fighting for freedom and democracy. That’s why I’m so pleased to co-sponsor legislation to support our local Ukrainian community, potential refugees from the war in Ukraine, and to ensure King County is doing all that we can to support efforts to bring peace to the people of Ukraine. I’m especially pleased that our King County Immigrant and Refugee Commission will be consulted in the development of our response. I look forward to moving this legislation expeditiously through our Council.”

November 23, 2021
$672 million supplemental budget, funding climate projects, gun violence reduction and key service restorations approved by King County Council
“I’m very pleased with the significant investment this budget makes in speeding up our bus electrification initiative, as well as an initial climate bond for important capital projects to address climate change and its impacts. We must do a lot more, and do it more quickly to address climate change and I hope we can send to the voters a major climate bond proposal in 2022 that builds on this initial work.” 

October 8, 2021
Bothell and Kenmore Sports and Rec Grants Secured by Councilmember Rod Dembowski
“Our community’s kids and adults need places to play and recreate. I continuously hear that current sports and recreation facilities are not adequate to meet today’s demand. These funds will help lower barriers for individuals and families wishing to access our waterways, play lacrosse, or join in on a game of pickleball at the Northshore Senior Center.”

p>July 27, 2021
Council approves more than $389 million for courts backlog, community supports, rental assistance, and more in latest round of emergency COVID funding
“This eighth COVID-19 response budget prioritizes fundamental human and community needs. It brings our total rental support appropriations during the pandemic emergency to approximately $350 million. It helps ensure access to justice. And it continues to prioritize our public health response to the pandemic and its impacts.”

May 19, 2021
Dembowski issues statement on retirement of Public Health Director Patty Hayes
“As a former Chair of the Seattle-King County Board of Health, I had the privilege and honor of working very closely with Director Hayes for a number of years. As a registered nurse, her genuine compassion for King County residents shined through in every meeting and in all her work..."

April 2, 2021
North King County Enhanced Shelter Opens in Shoreline
King County councilmember Rod Dembowski and County Executive Dow Constantine, toured the Lake City Partners new shelter at 16357 Aurora Avenue on March 31st ahead of its April 1st opening.

February 12, 2021
King County councilmembers propose hazard pay for frontline grocery workers
“For the last year I have visited with, and thanked the checkers, stockers, butchers and deli workers at the grocery stores I shop ... These extraordinary times call for governments like King County to respond with extraordinary help. I am proud to stand with these frontline workers and ensure that the risks they and their families are taking, and the dedication they are showing, is reflected in our laws, and in their paychecks."

November 3, 2020
Councilmember Dembowski applauds apparent passage of Harborview Bond measure
"I want to thank the voters and taxpayers of King County for approving the new Harborview Bond. We are going to build a nation-leading Behavioral Health Institute, modernize the emergency department, add respite and shelter beds, and build new patient rooms to reduce crowding and improve care..."

October 15, 2020
Joint Statement on I-976 Supreme Court Ruling
“Today’s ruling is a breath of fresh air ... A lack of access to mobility is a major barrier for many in our community to being able to gain employment, attend school and carry out everyday activities that many of us take for granted. Had I-976 been upheld we would not have been able to assure many in our region affordable and reliable transit options." 

July 15, 2020
Dembowski Issues Statement on Metro GM Gannon Stepping Down for New Role in Missoula, Montana
"Rob Gannon has been a compassionate and effective leader of our world-class transit department. He has prioritized our customers and led with integrity to advance our long range plan and equity-focused mobility plan...(full statement at link)"

June 9, 2020
Councilmembers Advance Key Reforms for County Law Enforcement
“These are important reforms that can help improve our justice system. They have been thoroughly vetted and developed with public input over many months. OLEO must have the power it needs to conduct its mission. A decade of opposition to its authority needs to end, and end now.”

May 26, 2020
Dembowski: Wrong Time to Hike Sewer Rates on Struggling Residents and Businesses
“King County has an obligation to carefully balance its responsibility to manage our regional wastewater system and to guide our region through this unprecedented health and economic crisis. I firmly believe that now is not the time to add to the economic burden so many families and businesses are facing. For that reason, I proposed a one-year delay of the Executive-proposed 4.5% sewer rate increase...."

December 2, 2019
Statement from Council Chair Dembowski on Superior Court’s closure of Third Avenue entrance to King County Courthouse
“I support the Superior Court’s decision to take aggressive action to protect the public and our county employees who work in and near the King County Courthouse...I am introducing emergency legislation to appropriate necessary funding to support the work and recommendations of the court’s proposed courthouse security work group, as well as to immediately enhance safety around the courthouse, and plan for longer-term safety and security improvements to the area.” 

November 5, 2019
Statement from Council Chair Dembowski, Transit Union President, Kenmore Mayor on Passage of Tim Eyman’s I-976
“King County voters sent a clear message that they want to continue investments in transit and critical local transportation infrastructure. At a time of record demands for service, we can’t afford to cut hundreds of millions of dollars in transit and transportation projects in King County. At King County we stand ready to consider all options to prevent Metro service bus cuts that will cause further congestion on our roadways, diminish service to our most vulnerable riders on Access paratransit, and delay the electrification of Metro’s fleet. Further, I believe as a regional government, we should work closely with our city partners to look at restoring funding for critical infrastructure projects like sidewalks, pothole repair, and streets. While I-976 is a roadblock, I am committed to immediately going to work to mitigate the worst of its impacts.”

October 9, 2019
Expansive Climate Change Legislation Proposed for County
“Millions of high-paying new jobs in the emerging zero-emission economy are going to be up for grabs. This proposal helps ensure that King County residents, especially those from historically disadvantaged communities, will be ready to compete and be hired into those living wage jobs.”

July 2, 2019
County Councils Appoint Stanford to State Senate and Duerr to State House of Representatives
“Congratulations to Senator Stanford and Representative Duerr on their respective appointments today. I was proud to bring the joint County Council meeting to the First District to make these appointments in the community, and look forward to continuing to work with Derek and Davina in their new capacities to serve our shared constituents.” 

June 26, 2019
County Council Confirms Members of Task Force focused on Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation
“This is important and serious work. It’s a chance for us to learn, assess, and do better — not only to be more inclusive and responsive, but to ensure that access to our systems and services are fair and just for all members of our community. This task force has an incredible opportunity to make transformative change through its recommendations in a way that will meaningfully impact people’s lives in a very real way.” 

May 24, 2019
Statements by King and Snohomish County Council Chairs on First Legislative District Appointment
“Snohomish County Council Chair Terry Ryan and I have spoken to start coordinating a joint meeting of our councils. I have also spoken with the Chair of the First Legislative District Democrats, Monica Chilton, and been in touch with Democratic State Party Chair Tina Podlodowski, to coordinate with the party on its process for sending three names to the councils.” 

May 22, 2019
Dembowski transfers surplus vans to local nonprofits
“The mobility that a van brings will help increase their capacity to continue serving those in need, by providing access to enriching educational, social, and recreational experiences.” 

May 8, 2019 
Recognizing need for affordable housing
“Having a stable and affordable place to live is perhaps the single best indicator of one’s opportunity to achieve their full potential. King County faces an affordability crisis, and we are taking action to address it by funding thousands of new affordable units for those most in need.”

April 24, 2019
County Council recognizes April as Sexual Assault Awareness Month
“Today we send a message that victims of sexual assault matter and are heard. Shining a light on this topic and helping victims find justice and closure is the reason I spearheaded an effort in 2015 to ensure all rape kits in King County were tested. These actions are just a few examples of how our government supports victims and takes sexual assault seriously.”  

March 27, 2019
Responding to the rise of Islamophobia
“As Americans, we share a foundational value of religious freedom, regardless of our background or heritage. It is a civil right, guaranteed and protected by our Constitution. The diversity of faiths and religions in our country is what unites us, not divides us.”

March 26, 2019
Hearing on youth solitary confinement raises question
“Solitary confinement of youth causes permanent harm, is inhumane, and unjust. It needs to stop, now.” 

March 15, 2019
Council on American-Islamic Relations and County Council Chair Issue Statements on New Zealand Terror Attack
“King County extends to our Muslim friends and neighbors condolences for the victims and families of the terrorist attacks at mosques in New Zealand. We will continue to steadfastly support and foster a community that respects all people of all faiths and we will fight back against anyone and any group that works to undermine our commitment to a peaceful and loving community that respects, honors, and celebrates the promise of religious and political freedoms on which our country was founded.”

March 13, 2019
Immigrant and Refugee-Focused Commission Appointed
“In these trying times, these brave leaders have stepped forward to help build the new Commission and assist the County in efforts to fully embrace all our residents. I am humbled by their dedication, and I look forward to partnering with them to continue to strengthen our county.”

February 27, 2019
Sarah Haycox recognized with MLK Medal of Distinguished Service for efforts to honor the life of Edwin T. Pratt
“Sarah is an inspiration and a shining example in our community. She has worked tirelessly, with dedication and persistence, to honor the life and legacy of Edwin T. Pratt, and I want to thank her for helping to educate the community and keep his memory and contributions alive both in District One and across King County.”

February 22, 2019
Funding for senior housing along light rail
Gossett, Dembowski present funds for housing complex near future light rail stop

February 14, 2019
Dembowski and Kohl-Welles to host joint Town Hall
“Bring your questions and suggestions for how King County can help achieve our community’s shared goals for affordable housing, transit, our environment, criminal justice, and human services. We look forward to seeing you.” 

January 7, 2019
New Chair Elected at King County Council
“We live in times of increasing economic disparity, where the middle class and our most vulnerable residents face unprecedented challenges. King County has a tremendous opportunity to improve every community in our region and the tools to make it happen. I appreciate the trust my colleagues have placed in me to guide that work and Chair the council in 2019.” 

December 20, 2018
Harborview Hall Shelter Opens This Week
“I want to thank the First Hill Improvement Association, Mayor Jenny Durkan, and Seattle City Councilmembers Sally Bagshaw and Teresa Mosqueda for their support of the project. They helped us apply pressure to continue moving forward with this project in the face of opposition, and break down bureaucratic and permitting barriers at the City to bring it to life. It is a promising model to bring more shelter beds online and save lives, but we’ve got to move more quickly and with a greater sense of urgency.”  

November 19, 2018
Dembowski Secures Funding for Innovative Law Enforcement De-escalation Program
Adopted last week, King County’s 2019-20 biennial budget includes significant investment in North King County’s Response, Awareness, De-escalation and Referral (RADAR) program, which helps build a bridge between law enforcement and mental health services. Councilmember Rod Dembowski worked to secure $780,000 to support this program and the collaboration between the cities of Shoreline, Bothell, Lake Forest Park, Kirkland, and Kenmore.

November 13, 2018
Gang Unit and Massive Investments in Housing, Homeless Services, and Transportation Headline Budget
“This budget prioritizes investments aimed at ensuring everyone in King County has the opportunity to pursue their full potential. From housing investments, to expanding access to transit, to innovative criminal justice reform initiatives, this is a budget that puts our progressive values into action. I am honored to have participated in the budget leadership team that led the efforts to complete this work.” 

November 5, 2018
Anita Khandelwal confirmed as Director of Public Defense
“Anita Khandelwal’s confirmation as our new Public Defender is a testament to King County’s commitment to equity and social justice. She will be a powerful voice for the disenfranchised, ensuring their constitutional rights are protected. She will be a trusted partner in helping us bend the arc of our justice system toward greater equity.”

October 16, 2018
Statement on Comments Made to KUOW
“The comments made related to sexual assault by our colleague do not represent the King County Council. We believe victims. We stand with survivors. We believe the past matters. We call on fellow elected officials to work together to end gender-based violence in all forms. While the #MeToo movement has spurred what are certainly difficult and nuanced conversations, there is absolutely no room for justification, invalidation, and victim blaming.”

October 3, 2018
Dembowski statement on Khandelwal’s nomination as Public Defender
“I commend Executive Constantine for making this nomination; it shows he respects the independence of this office as set forth in our charter and knows that those advancing differing views on critical public policy issues, shared and debated, are essential in driving change and achieving the better justice system outcomes for King County residents we all desire.”

September 17, 2018
Joint Statement on Passage of Safeco Funding
“The ordinance we voted on today has been called a compromise. Make no mistake, this is not a compromise.”

August 30, 2018
Dembowski: Public Should Vote on Stadium Subsidy
“From the original Kingdome bonds, to Safeco Field’s construction and the financing of CenturyLink Field, the public has always been asked to weigh-in before significant public funding was approved.”

July 24, 2018
Committee of the Whole to hold hearings on using proceeds from the Hotel/Motel Tax
Metropolitan King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski, chair of the Council’s Committee of the Whole, today announced the committee’s schedule for discussion and possible action on Motion 2018-0266, legislation that will discuss the allocation of the revenue raised by the Lodging Tax, better known as the Hotel/Motel Tax.

July 23, 2018
“Retiring” county employees prepare for new adventures
“It is a privilege to donate retired Metro vans to these tremendous organizations, who will put them to great use serving the community. From transporting kids to recreational activities to delivering seniors to medical appointments, I can't wait to see these vans back out on the road.” 

July 2, 2018
Diverse Community Leaders to Review King County Charter
“This is an important body of work to make sure King County can continue to effectively respond to the increasingly complex challenges facing our region.” 

June 26, 2018
Dembowski statement on Supreme Court Crisis Pregnancy Center ruling
“Limiting information and enabling misleading practices in the reproductive health field puts women at risk.” 

June 4, 2018
Celebrating Pride Month with Action
“Gender identity is complex and often misunderstood, however this doesn’t mean we can’t affirm there is diversity in how gender is defined. Serious discrimination and mistreatment has impacted these communities, due in part to ignorance and misinformation. Today’s motion addresses inequities we must eliminate to make King County a more welcoming and inclusive government for all our constituents.” 

May 14, 2018
Everyone Counts: Council takes lead in accurate 2020 Census in King County
“As King County continues to grow rapidly, it is absolutely critical that the census accurately captures the demographics of our region while protecting privacy for our county’s residents. The county relies on accurate census data, not only for federal funding, but also to efficiently deliver programs and services to our residents.” 

May 7, 2018
Prepaid Postage Ballots Approved by Council
“Voting is the foundation of our democracy. By eliminating the postage ‘poll tax’, King County is taking an important step to dismantle a barrier that keeps some from exercising their right to vote.”  

May 7, 2018
County Council recognizes history, heritage of Asian Pacific Americans
“The rich diversity of the Asian Pacific American community and their contributions and experiences have greatly enhanced our region and deserves acknowledgement and appreciation.” 

April 30, 2018
King County Council awards environmental steward Terry Lavender MLK Medal of Distinguished Service
“Because of Terry’s dedication to conservation and preservation, future generations will be able to access green space and wildlife will continue to have natural habitat in King County.”  

April 30, 2018
Allowing infants to come to work
“An Infants at Work program is the right thing to do for our employees, since it also gives families more financial stability and flexibility at a time when childcare costs continue to rise. I’m excited we’re taking another positive step towards making King County a family-friendly workplace.”

April 19, 2018
Safeco, Century Link to Go Fully Tobacco Free
“I was moved by the testimony from the young Mariners fans who testified before the Board of Health. They made perfectly clear that watching their heroes chew smokeless tobacco conflicted with their understanding of the dangerous substance. They effectively persuaded the Board of Health that it was time for action.”  

March 20, 2018
Crisis Pregnancy Centers in National Spotlight
“When we adopted the regulation last year, we paid close attention to the California law and the applicable cases reviewing it and other such laws around the country. We carefully tailored our regulation to ensure compliance with the Constitution while requiring notice to women seeking reproductive health services, at the time and location that they are seeking them, that such centers do not provide all the services one might need.”  

March 19, 2018
County Council joins young people in calling for end to gun violence
“March for Our Lives shows the power of youth voices. Adults and elected leaders have the responsibility to listen and address gun violence. It's time to respond to our nation's youth and send a message that their lives are valued.” 

March 9, 2018
Statement on the retirement of Washington State Representative Ruth Kagi
“Ruth Kagi has been the model public servant. Her passion for children, and the significant policy victories she has championed and achieved on behalf of our state’s children, are unparalleled.”

March, 2018
Low Income Priority Hire Program Moving Forward
“Construction is an industry in which hardworking people can get access to a well-paying career, but what we have seen over the past twenty years is that access has only been granted to certain populations. Today’s legislation uplifts historically underinvested neighborhoods, giving residents and communities a pathway out of poverty.”

February 26, 2018
Council adopts guidelines for immigrant and refugee assistance that make King County a “National Model”
“Our history is one that has welcomed immigrants and refugees. Inscribed on our most cherished monument to these values are the words ‘give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free...’ Unfortunately actions by the Federal government have shaken this promise. I am proud to have co-sponsored today’s ordinance that ensures immigrants and refugees feel welcomed and protected in King County.”

January 29, 2018
Council approves legal assistance for families during inquest process
“While families are still grieving from the loss of their loved one, the last thing they should need to worry about is how to afford a lawyer to represent their needs and navigate them through the inquest process. Affording families legal representation will be a modest cost to the County, yet make a dramatic impact on how our neighbors experience a very difficult situation.”

January 29, 2018
Council approves creation of Immigrant and Refugee Commission
“We, as a County, are responding to the increased barriers immigrants and refugees may face by updating our policies, programs and procedures with a fair and just lens.” 

January 18, 2018
Counties Representing 37 Million Americans Demand Dreamers Fix
“We are proud to act with what Dr. King called ‘the fierce urgency of now’ and submit this letter to Congress at this pivotal moment in this fight for justice.” 

December 11, 2017
Council bans solitary confinement for youth in detention
“We are working hard to improve our juvenile justice system in King County. We know from scientific research that solitary confinement can permanently harm young people so I am pleased that we are now ending this harmful practice.”

December 11, 2017
Council transforms how juveniles are detained in King County
“This report recommends major changes to the construction and operation of the new youth jail. I hope the Executive and County will take Dr. Trupin’s recommendations to heart and implement them.”  

November 13, 2017
Council Approves Simplifying Metro Transit Fares
“Riders, especially ones new to the system, should have the confidence to board a Metro bus and know the required fare. I hope the flat fare makes using Metro more understandable and encourages first-time users to ride Metro.” 

November 6, 2017
Council Votes to Fund Measures to Prevent Gun Violence
The people of King County stand with the people of south Texas and send our deepest condolences to those who lost loved ones in yet another preventable attack.

November 2, 2017
Dembowski legislation would ban solitary confinement for youth in detention
“I had previously been led to believe that King County did not engage in this practice, and I am disheartened and frustrated that King County has for years treated juvenile offenders with adult jail rules and practices at the Regional Justice Center (RJC) in Kent.”

October 23, 2017
Volunteering for justice: County Council celebrates Pro Bono Week
“It is an honor to highlight the tireless work done by pro bono attorneys, on behalf of our most vulnerable. Our justice system is better for everyone, as a result of their efforts and dedication.”  

October 2, 2017
Councilmembers Call for Congressional Response to Tragedy
“Failure to act at the Federal level continues to put King County, and every community in America, at risk – and this remains simply unacceptable.” 

September 18, 2017
Council approves program honoring Ruth Woo’s commitment to the future
“I am thrilled that with this fellowship we can continue Mrs. Woo’s legacy and important work to open doors in public service to a new generation of leaders, especially those from underrepresented backgrounds.”  

September 15, 2017
Dembowski: Mayor Harrell’s order on Children and Family Justice Center “Right Choice”
“Here in Martin Luther King Jr. County, the time is always right to do what is right. Dr. Trupin’s report confirms our view that the currently proposed CFJC falls short on King County’s goal to work toward Zero Youth Detention.”  

July 24, 2017
New careers for “retiring” County employees
“From helping adults with developmental disabilities to providing new opportunities to youth, these ‘retired’ vans are going to provide essential transportation needs in our community for years to come.”  

July 20, 2017
King County Board of Health Approves New Rule for County’s Limited Service Pregnancy Centers
“It is critical that pregnant women have complete, timely and accurate health information. Any delay in receiving pregnancy information can have adverse health impacts on both the woman and baby.”

June 12, 2017
County Council appoints Javier Valdez to State House
“From the very first time we met as college students volunteering on a campaign, to today, Javier has devoted his life to serving our community and fighting for social justice. I am confident he will take his effective and determined leadership with him to Olympia. I look forward to partnering with him to serve the people of the 46th Legislative District.”

June 6, 2017
Dembowski, Upthegrove award MLK Medal of Distinguished Service to local Filipino leaders
“There are few more deserving of this honor than Frank, known to many as Uncle Frank. He is a tireless advocate, a humble agitator, who is quick to raise his voice to call out injustice. While Frank is well known in the Asian Pacific Islander American community for his work, many King County residents have been positively impacted by his constant diligence in protecting our civil rights. I am honored to recognize him with the MLK Medal of Distinguished Service.”  

May 22, 2017
Dembowski awards Frank Irigon MLK Medal of Distinguished Service
“There are few more deserving of this honor than Frank, known to many as ‘Uncle Frank.’ He is a tireless advocate, a humble agitator, who is quick to raise his voice to call out injustice. While Frank is well known in the Asian Pacific Islander American community for his work, many King County residents have been positively impacted by his constant diligence in protecting our civil rights.”  

May 15, 2017
County Council Memorializes Gordon Hirabayashi’s Act of Courage and Resistance
“As Mr. Hirabayashi reminded us, his case was ’an American case, with principles that affect the fundamental human rights of all Americans.’ By commemorating Mr. Hirabayashi’s noble stand and personal sacrifice of liberty, we keep alive his courage and faith in the Constitution, and we remind ourselves of the importance of protecting our principles.”

May 1, 2017
Dembowski statement on the passing of Mike Lowry
“Governor Lowry was a friend and political mentor and I will miss him greatly.”

April 17, 2017
Council approves blueprint to implement voter-approved changes for civilian oversight of law enforcement
“Independent civilian police oversight is critical to addressing inequities and injustices in our criminal justice system. I am heartened by the broad support for today’s legislation and am proud to have co-sponsored it with Councilmember Gossett, and worked hard to pass it.”

April 6, 2017
King County honors local service in the “War to End all Wars”
On the 100th Anniversary of the U.S. entering WWI, Councilmember Reagan Dunn, Councilmember Rod Dembowski, local veterans and family members of those who served, gathered at the King County Courthouse to unveil plaques honoring King County and City of Seattle employees who served in WWI. The plaques are located just outside of the 4th Avenue entrance to the Courthouse.

March 13, 2017
Council Approves Independent Investigation of West Point Treatment Plant Disaster
“I believe an independent review is essential, as the public needs to have the utmost confidence in the report regarding what went wrong at the plant.”

March 7, 2017
Council to Call for Third Party Investigation of West Point Disaster
“We will take up emergency action at the King County Council this Monday to appoint an independent, third party consultant to investigate what led to this disaster. In light of questions raised and then unanswered by plant management at recent hearings, we believe it is our duty to get this information from an independent source. This cannot ever happen again.”

March 6, 2017
County Council Replaces Carbon-Based Power with Clean Wind-Generated Electricity
“I am very proud that the County continues to lead on efforts to protect our environment and address climate change. From the boldest climate action plan in the country, to the soon-to-be largest all-electric battery bus fleet, King County continues to innovate and use new technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

March 6, 2017
Effort to Honor Veterans on 100th Anniversary of America’s Entry into First World War
“As the son of a Korean War combat Veteran, I am personally committed to ensuring we honor the sacrifices of all who have served our nation, including the more than 120,000 veterans who call King County home. I am proud to partner with Councilmember Dunn to honor the legacy of the brave men and women who fought to safeguard the world 100 years ago.”

March 6, 2017
County Council Women’s History Month proclamation recognizes, celebrates the challenges and contributions of women
“King County has made strides to address the policies and systems that contribute to these inequities, especially in the workforce. It is my hope that policies such as our nation-leading parental leave program, which I was proud to author, will serve as a beacon to others.”

February 21, 2017
County Council remembers 75th Anniversary of Exec. Order 9066
“We must never forget the events leading up to this travesty, the irreparable harm inflicted, and the patriotism and courage of those who spoke out against the violations of their civil liberties. Linking this history to contemporary issues, we must ensure we do not repeat past atrocities.” 

November 28, 2016
Fiscal Options for Public Safety, Public Health and Housing Highlight King County’s Legislative Agenda
“In a time of uncertainty for many in our community, we are advocating that state laws be strengthened to provide support to organizations and programs that deter and counteract hate-motivated criminal activity, improve access to voting, and ensure access to affordable health care coverage and affordable housing for all King County residents.”

November 16, 2016
Dembowski Secures Sports & Recreation Grants for Shoreline
“Our community’s kids and adults need places to play and recreate. Current sports and recreation facilities are not adequate to meet today’s demand. I have heard the concerns and am pleased that King County will be able to partner with Shoreline, as well as other North King County cities and non-profits to provide expanded recreation opportunities for both youth and adults.”

November 16, 2016
Dembowski Secures Over $1 Million in Sports & Recreation Grants for North King County
“Our community’s kids and adults need places to play and recreate. North King County sports and recreation facilities are not adequate to meet today’s demand. I have heard the concerns and am pleased that King County will be able to partner with North King County cities and non-profits to provide expanded recreation opportunities for both youth and adults in north King County.”

November 14, 2016
Commitment to public safety, homelessness and transportation highlight King County Budget
“With $7 Million of historic new investments to meaningfully tackle homelessness and serve our most vulnerable neighbors, we are delivering on that goal.”

November 14, 2016
Councilmembers Balducci and Dembowski help craft adopted County Budget
“My top priority in this budget was to increase shelter and affordable housing to make a serious dent in our region’s homelessness crisis.”

October 24, 2016
Increasing access to justice: King County Council celebrates Pro Bono Week
“When I was an attorney in private practice, I volunteered my time on a number of pro bono cases, including those on behalf of domestic violence survivors. The cases were some of the most difficult, yet most enriching experiences of my career, and have given me a deep appreciation for all attorneys in our community who volunteer to represent others.”

October 20, 2016
Public presents their budget priorities at public meetings on 2017-2018 County Budget
“King County’s budget choices have very real impacts on the lives and livelihoods of residents from all of our communities, made all the more clear by the compelling public testimony offered over the past two weeks. As a member of the Council’s Budget Leadership Team, my top priority in this budget is to increase shelter and affordable housing to make a serious dent in our region’s homelessness crisis.”

October 20, 2016
Dembowski, Fain selected for national leadership fellowship
“I'm honored to have been selected to learn from other leaders around the country and to think more about how, working together, we can better deliver on the American promise of opportunity for everyone.”

October 3, 2016
County recognizes and celebrates value of workers with disabilities
“Our Supported Employment Division does an outstanding job connecting workers with disabilities with employers needing great employees. This work is an important part of our mission to ensure that everyone in our community has the opportunity to achieve their full potential.”

September 26, 2016
Three panels will direct County Council’s review of Executive’s Proposed Biennial Budget
“I will work to ensure that our expected $30 million additional investment in Metro Transit will bring more bus service to underserved communities to keep our County moving, enhance passenger and driver safety, and aggressively push forward my initiative to convert our bus fleet to a zero emissions/carbon-neutral system. I am also excited to double down on our parks and open space conservation efforts. I am ready to get to work with my colleagues.”

September 19, 2016
County Council approves “transformative” implementation plan for Best Starts for Kids
“Today’s action approving the Best Starts for Kids implementation plan marks a significant milestone for funding preventative Health and Human Services, my top priority when coming to the County Council.”

September 15, 2016
Board of Health members tour new Mobile Medical Van
This mobile clinic, funded by the City of Seattle, is one of two that deliver health services to residents of King County, including residents experiencing homelessness.

September 7, 2016
Council committee approves blueprint for Best Starts for Kids
“Today’s action by the Council’s HHHS Committee marks a significant milestone for our collective work to improve opportunities for King County’s children and youth. I’m grateful for the strong community partnership that brought us to this happy day.”

September 6, 2016
Measures to prevent lead poisoning in King County
“I strongly support this effort to address environmental health hazards for children in King County. Preventing lead exposure is critical to childhood development and is consistent with our goals on the Board of Health.”

August 23, 2016
Citizens Vote With Their Feet, Support New Ballot Drop Box Locations
“The strong endorsement by voters of this initiative confirms its importance. I'm also very pleased to see the significant number of ballots returned in communities that have historically faced higher barriers to civic participation.”

July 15, 2016
Landmark report presents recommendations on giving immigrants and refugees greater voice
“Our country was founded on the principles of democracy, fairness and justice, and these values must continue to guide us, now more than ever. As a result of conversations with community members who saw a need for the county to play a greater role in responding to our area’s rapidly changing demographics, Councilmember Gossett and I brought forward the motion that established the task force that put forth these recommendations.”

July 25, 2016
Dembowski statement on marijuana legislation
“I believe that we need more time and a lot more work to get the zoning rules right in order to ensure that voter-approved I-502 succeeds, that burdens and benefits are equitably shared, in a way that is compatible with surrounding uses, just like any other legal industry.”

July 25, 2016
County Council approves WaterWorks project grants
“The WaterWorks program funds projects that do vital work to restore, clean, and protect our local waters.”

June 6, 2016
County Council recognizes LGBTQ Pride Month
“I am honored today to celebrate our region’s LGBTQ community. While we have seen immense progress and success in the past few years, the fight for equality and inclusion is not over. We must continue our work to advance the cause of equal opportunity for everyone.”

May 23, 2016
County Council recognizes Barbara Langdon for her work in supporting survivors of domestic violence
“Barbara Langdon has devoted her career to supporting domestic violence survivors. Her leadership at LifeWire has made immensely impactful differences in the lives of the most vulnerable members of our community. I am honored today to recognize her service.”

May 23, 2016
County Council recognizes effort to provide instruments to students
“I am thrilled to recognize the work of Music4Life in providing instruments to children in King County. Music helps students thrive in all academic disciplines, and as the parent of two children who play instruments, I know the positive impact music education makes in young students’ lives.”

May 2, 2016
43 additional ballot drop off locations will be available to county voters this fall
“Voters want more drop boxes, and King County is delivering. Our goal is to increase convenience and lower barriers to voting. This new plan is a big step forward in improving access.”

May 2, 2016
Council approves new ballot drop off boxes in District 1

April 25, 2016
Metro Transit examines greening its fleet
“For decades, Metro has been a national leader in reducing the overall impact transportation has on our air quality by implementing cutting edge technology and reducing single occupant car trips. I believe we must continue to lead, and push forward aggressively by pursuing a carbon-neutral or zero emissions bus fleet. This motion lays the groundwork to do that, as our region grows and the demands on our transit system increase.”

March 29, 2016
Future of transit focus of joint committee meeting
“Our transit division is an extraordinary tool to enhance mobility and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In developing the carbon-neutral transit motion with Councilmember O’Brien, it is our hope to lead the nation toward a carbon neutral transit system as expeditiously as possible.”

March 28, 2016
Council Vice Chair Rod Dembowski responds to today’s State of the County Address
“I look forward to working with him to advance this essential work.”

March 28, 2016
Council leadership responds to State of the County Address
“Executive Constantine laid out a compelling case to build the transportation infrastructure we need to support the vibrant growth coming to Puget Sound in the coming decades.” 

March 21, 2016
County Council acts to enhance transit system safety
“I called for this legislation as recent assaults on Metro buses have made it clear to me that more can be done to ensure the safety of our drivers and passengers. I believe a review of safety and security measures on our buses will provide Metro an opportunity to use all the tools available to make Metro the safest transit agency in the nation.”

March 21, 2016
King County residents receive MLK Medal of Distinguished Service
“Margaret Walkky and Steve Bearden embody the spirit of service that King County’s namesake, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., worked to instill in our nation. Since 1999, they have dedicated themselves to improving the lives of homeless individuals in our region. With the mission to cook the very best and most delicious meals for those most in need, they have not only nourished the lives of our most venerable neighbors, but they have no doubt inspired countless others to serve as well. For their service, I am honored to present them the inaugural MLK Medal of Distinguished Service”

March 21, 2016
“Retiring” County employees prepare for new careers
“It is very rewarding to be given the opportunity to support such wonderful organizations, and to know that the vans are going to be put to good use serving our community.”

March 9, 2016
Council Committee presents timeline for reviewing updates to King County land use policies
“I look forward to working with my colleagues and hearing from the public as we begin review the Executive’s proposed 2016 comprehensive plan update over the coming months. We intend to hold a thoughtful and open process for all members of the community to learn more about and comment on the proposal.”

March 7, 2016
Celebrating their strength: King County proclaims March “Women’s History Month”
“I am proud to provide leadership on these issues at the County, including fighting for a nation-leading paid parental leave program, sponsoring the King County Women’s Advisory Board’s recommendations for improving wage equity and promoting a family-friendly workplace, and sponsoring the 100% Talent gender equity initiative for King County.”

February 16, 2016
County Council recognizes history and contributions of African-Americans
“As policymakers who work to improve the lives of everyone in our community, I believe we must know the history of every community that together forms the strong and vibrant fabric of America. Black History Month helps us all learn America's history.”

February 10, 2016
King County Partners with Forterra, Bothell Residents to Preserve Wayne Golf Course
“Following news of a proposed development for the site early January of last year, I began meeting and working with local residents to protect this special land from developers. King County has prioritized protection of the land since the early 1990’s and I felt strongly that we should finish the vision to protect all of the property, including its more than 4,500 feet of shoreline along the Sammamish River.”

January 25, 2016
Council approves members of King County Children and Youth Advisory Board
“I am thrilled to see this recommendation from King County’s Youth Action Plan for reforming governance of our kids programs come to life. We are lucky to have such talented and accomplished board members to help steer us toward our goals. Today’s confirmation vote marks an important milestone in our re-invigorated efforts to improve the lives of kids throughout King County.”  

January 19, 2016
McDermott, Dembowski and Dunn to lead County Council in 2016
“I appreciate the confidence my colleagues have placed in me to serve as Vice-Chair of the Council.”
December 14, 2015
County Council, Elections partner in making voting more convenient and accessible
“The foundation of our democracy is the right to vote – we are aiming to strengthen our democracy by ensuring more King County citizens have the ability to access that right.”

December 14, 2015
Council approves projects to receive $2 million in water quality grants
“The Waterworks Program continues our efforts to advance the mission started by Jim Ellis and King County voters in 1958 to clean up our streams, rivers and lakes. The grants approved today make critical investments in community-based water quality monitoring and clean-up efforts, including advanced technologies and methods to identity and abate water pollution,”

December 7, 2015
Council approves nation-leading paid parental leave program
“Paid parental leave is not only the right thing to do for parents and kids, but as the private sector has demonstrated, it’s also fiscally responsible as it aids in recruitment and retention of valuable employees. As one of the top ten employers in the State of Washington, King County has an obligation to lead and be a model employer.”

November 24, 2015
Fiscal Options, Transportation and Public Health Highlight King County’s Legislative Agenda
“The Council’s 2016 Legislative Agenda demonstrates our continued commitment to improving the health and welfare of our residents. To achieve one of our major goals, ending veteran homelessness, we need our representatives in Olympia to make sure that all veterans in the County and across the state are eligible for services like housing, employment and counselling. I am also proud we are prioritizing paid leave for Washingtonians as this is about showing that Washington State is a place that is willing to put families first.”

November 24, 2015
Preserving, renovating, and building veterans and heritage facilities in Shoreline and Kenmore
“Building for Culture dollars will make possible long desired capital investments in the Shoreline Historical Museum, fund completion of the Shoreline Veterans Memorial, help preserve the Richmond Masonic Center, and continue renovation of the Kenmore Community Club. These organizations have a tremendous impact on our community, and these grants will ensure they continue to serve our residents for years to come.”

November 9, 2015
Taking out obsolete rail is next step toward trail, other uses along Eastside Rail Corridor
“I am excited about making the corridor more accessible to other communities as quickly as possible, so that more folks can take advantage of this tremendous regional asset. Full Steam Ahead!”  

October 26, 2015
King County Council celebrates Pro Bono Week
“As an attorney in private practice I worked on a number of pro bono cases, including cases on behalf of domestic violence survivors. This firsthand experience gave me a deep appreciation for the tireless work done by pro bono attorneys on behalf of our most vulnerable. Our justice system is better for everyone, as a result of their efforts and dedication.”

October 19, 2015
Council approves transit route overhaul
“While today’s proposal is not perfect, I believe that on the whole it improves service and access to transit for more riders.”

July 22, 2015
County Council sends “Best Start for Kids” initiative to the voters
“Best Starts for Kids builds off the work of the Youth Action Plan and would provide the funding necessary to implement many of the Plan’s recommendations.”

July 20, 2015
County Council Expands Access to Voting
“Today’s significant step will increase voter participation, access, and create more informed voters. As we worked towards today’s achievement, I was honored to have the help, support, and expertise of so many community leaders that represent the myriad of cultures that will now have improved access to voting materials.”

July 20, 2015
County Council approves task force to investigate creation of immigrant and refugee commission

“I’ve heard countless stories of the roadblocks residents face accessing essential services. I am confident that today’s action is the first step in ensuring all residents have equal access to their government. I thank the leaders of our immigrant and refugee communities who brought this proposal forward. Today’s vote is a credit to their leadership.”

June 22, 2015
William Hobson recognized for decades of service on behalf of the homeless
“For more than 30 years, Dr. Hobson has selflessly devoted his career to the most vulnerable members of our society. His retirement brings an opportunity for us all to reflect on his work combating homelessness and the work that remains. I pledge to continue and build on the hard fought progress he’s achieved.”

June 15, 2015
County Council approves new priorities for assisting children and youth
“The Youth Action Plan represents the best thinking of children and youth advocates countywide to ensure that all kids in King County can achieve their full potential. The plan provides a blueprint to reform how we invest in kids at King County, and lights the path for potential new investments of resources to achieve the plan's vision for our kids.” 

June 1, 2015
King County working on strategies to reduce crowding in Involuntary Treatment Act Court
“Any family that has had a loved one go through court as part of the Involuntary Treatment Act understands that it’s a demanding and emotionally exhausting process. The dedicated attorneys and judges who staff the ITA court work tirelessly, day in and day out, on behalf of their clients and our community. They need adequate facilities to do their work.”

June 1, 2015
County Council proclaims June “Gay Pride Month”
“I am proud to have participated in the 1993 March on Washington for Lesbian, Gay and Bi-Equal Rights and Liberation, and in several Seattle Pride Parades since. It’s truly great to see the magnificent change in attitudes on this important civil rights issue. Love is winning.”  

May 18, 2015
County Council approves members of advisory board for Economic Opportunity and Empowerment Program
“What’s so exciting about this program is that it will teach youth, veterans, people of color, and women the trade skills necessary to obtain family-wage jobs. I have great confidence in the panel members, and look forward to seeing their plan in action.”

May 12, 2015
Dembowski statement on the retirement of Shoreline City Councilmember Chris Eggen
"Chris Eggen has served the City of Shoreline and our region and nation with humility, sincerity, and intelligence. His dedication to progressive values, careful stewardship of taxpayer funds, and his long-range thinking will benefit generations to come."

May 11, 2015
Equity and social justice, alternatives for unincorporated communities and public outreach highlight work plan for King County Comprehensive Plan
“We have outlined a path to continue King County’s long tradition of protecting our environment and preserving critical open space and have included a new emphasis on ensuring equity in our comprehensive plan policies. I appreciate King County Executive Dow Constantine’s support of the motion and I look forward to working with him over the coming year.”

May 7, 2015
Councilmember Rod Dembowski’s statement on Wayne Land preservation progress
“This is a once in a generation opportunity that we cannot miss, and I commend and thank Mayor Freed for expressing a willingness to work with the community, King County, the State and other partners to preserve this land.”

May 4, 2015
County Council calls for Executive to consider specific climate actions in Strategic Climate Action Plan
“When it comes to taking bold steps to address climate change head-on, King County has never shied away from being a national leader. I am proud that my amendment making it a goal to eliminate coal power from the county's operational energy portfolio was adopted, and that we are now redoubling our efforts to reduce our carbon footprint and encouraging county residents to do the same.”

April 27, 2015
Bonding time: County Council establishes policy to provide employees 12 weeks of paid parental and family leave
“Paid parental leave is not only the right thing to do for parents and kids, but as the private sector has demonstrated, it’s also fiscally responsible as it aids in recruitment and retention of valuable employees. As one of the top ten employers in the State of Washington, King County has an obligation to lead and be a model employer.”

April 27, 2015
Collaboration for the next generation: County Council hears from County Executive on efforts to assist young people
“The executive has made an ambitious proposal for a dedicated, targeted investment in King County's kids. With smart early investments, we can earn the dividends of improved health and safety, lower criminal justice and chronic health care treatment expenses, and reduced disparities.” 

April 15, 2015
New priorities for County’s Children and Youth
“The Youth Action Plan represents the best thinking of children and youth advocates countywide to ensure that all kids in King County can achieve their full potential. The plan provides a blueprint to reform how we invest in kids at King County, and lights the path for potential new investments of resources to achieve the plan's vision for our kids.”

April 1, 2015
Dembowski statement on Council Chair Phillips
“Great landscapes have been protected, our water is cleaner, and the region has one of the best transit systems in the nation, all thanks to Larry's lifetime of work.”

March 30, 2015
County Council calls for action on improving wage equity and promoting family friendly workplace policies
“Family friendly workplace policies have been found to increase employee retention, which is key for the county’s success in providing the highest level of service to our residents. Additionally, it is crucial that we finally and meaningfully address the gender wage gap. At the current rate of progress, the gender wage gap in Washington State is not projected to close until the year 2071. That fact is unacceptable and we can’t sit by and leave this problem for future generations to solve.”

March 2, 2015
Council confirms appointment of Lorinda Youngcourt as Director of the Department of Public Defense
“Lorinda Youngcourt understands the elements that make our public defender system one of the best in the country. As our new King County Public Defender, I know Ms. Youngcourt is committed to promoting access to justice and equity in the criminal justice system, and will work each day to continue King County’s excellent tradition in representing indigent defendants.”

February 27, 2015
Council adopts legislation that will benefit Sammamish River preservation projects
“The Sammamish River, near Bothell in particular, is a nexus for some of our most popular regional trials, and King County wants to send the message that these are important community resources that deserve strong consideration for funding and preservation.”

February 26, 2015
Councilmembers introduce legislation establishing paid parental leave for county employees
“Paid parental leave is not only the right thing to do for parents and kids, but as the private sector has demonstrated, it’s also fiscally responsible and aids in recruitment and retention of valuable employees. As one of the top ten employers in the State of Washington, King County has an obligation to lead and be a model employer.”

February 20, 2015
Board of Health joins call for increasing the age to purchase tobacco and vapor products
“The facts are evident – smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the US, it costs Washington State billions of dollars in healthcare, and 95% of adult smokers begin before the age of 21. That’s why it makes sense to reduce access to tobacco and vapor products to our youth while their brains are still developing and they are especially susceptible to addictive substances. This is good public health policy, it is fiscally responsible, and it supports parents who try to keep tobacco products from their kids.”

February 17, 2015
More buses in Seattle: County Council approves contract for city to purchase additional transit
“Demand for transit is stronger than ever. This significant investment in our transit system is welcome news for the region and our effort to reduce congestion and support our growing economy.”

February 4, 2015
Reflecting on an act of discrimination: County Council recognizes Native American Expulsion Remembrance Day
“I’m honored to join in friendship with leaders from our Native American communities throughout our region to remember this important time in history and pledge to make sure we honor and respect the First Peoples of King County in our work today.”

February 2, 2015
King County Council Takes Bold Action to Cap Carbon Emissions from County’s Wastewater Treatment and Solid Waste Divisions 
“This is a win-win ordinance. It’s good for our environment and good for our economy. It will make our two utilities carbon-neutral and provide for further investment in Metro Transit, to take even more emissions out of the air. I felt that we needed to take significantly stronger, proactive steps today to address the pressing challenge posed by climate change and local air pollution.”

January 26, 2015
County Council gives its unanimous support to King County’s federal legislative agenda
“I am particularly pleased that the Council is reaffirming its support for additional funding from the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant program. I will continue to advocate for critical funding for the Northgate Pedestrian and Bicycle Bridge, so that regional light rail service can be accessible to North Seattle residents both East and West of I-5.”

January 26, 2015
Metropolitan King County Council declares "See Blue Week"
“For the second year in a row it is remarkable to watch our county come together behind one of the most unique and talented sports franchises in the nation. Even for the casual sport fan, it is hard not to get caught up in the excitement and emotion of a second straight Super Bowl run. Go Hawks!”

December 10, 2014
County Council takes action on homeless encampments
“My goal is to identify long-term stable housing and put an end to the ongoing cycle of temporary and emergency shelters. Innovative housing projects that are better options for both the homeless and the taxpayer are being implemented throughout the country, and we need to seriously consider these ideas.”

December 8, 2014
Providing revenue options, maintaining the safety net, providing local options for transportation highlight King County’s state legislative agenda
“As the Council’s representative on the Mental Illness & Drug Dependency (MIDD) Oversight Committee, I am particularly interested in our work to strengthen the MIDD. I have seen firsthand that investments in our mental health and chemical dependency programs pay dividends in the form of reduced jail time and costly hospital stays, while helping individuals lead a healthier and more stable life.”

November 17, 2014
Council adopts budget that keeps buses on the road
“It has been an uncertain time for the nearly 200,000 people who rely on Metro every day to get to work, school, and medical appointments. Today’s action sent a clear, definitive, and united message from the County Council – there will be no further reductions of Metro bus service in this budget cycle. At the same time, we are growing reserves to prepare for a future recession.”

November 17, 2014
Dembowski: Working on partnerships to keep the Northshore Public Health Clinic open
“As a kid, I received my health care at a King County Public Health clinic. Keeping these vital services for women and children was my top budget priority. I am working closely with our city partners to form partnerships to keep Northshore Public Health Clinic open beyond 2015.”

November 10, 2014
King County Council unanimously approves Dembowski’s legislation creating an independent, full-time, and ongoing auditor of Metro Transit
“We have repeatedly demonstrated that audits save money and improve accountability. Audits also increase transparency that fosters much- needed trust with the public. The public needs to know that their tax dollars and fares are being spent wisely, and I believe this legislation will increase public confidence in Metro.”

November 4, 2014
Councilmember Dembowski thanks Seattle voters for approving Seattle’s Proposition 1
“Voters need to have confidence that their money is and will continue to be well spent, and today’s vote signals that our hard work to that end is paying off.”

October 24, 2014
King County partners with Clear Channel Outdoor Media for a BIG REMINDER to vote
“The foundation of our democracy is the right to vote. As King County’s population of limited English speaking citizens grows, we must ensure that they are able to exercise that right. King County can and should do more to serve the needs of our burgeoning LEP citizens, and this partnership is a great step in the right direction.”

October 6, 2014
Providing path to the American Dream: Council gives support to living wage
“We must clear away the hurdles between our residents and the promise of America, and a good-paying job is the best means to that end. This living wage policy will help many residents rise out of the ranks of the working poor and cross the threshold of the American Dream.”

September 29, 2014
County Council cancels February transit service reductions
"I am pleased that there is now consensus to cancel further service cuts to allow the County Council to complete the King County Budget and for Seattle voters to act in November on Seattle’s Proposition 1. This is an approach that a majority of us on the County Council supported from the outset.”  

September 26, 2014
County considers expanding cost-effective transit options for local communities
"We are working to make Metro Transit into a national leader on innovative transportation options for our residents.  These creative proposals are a down payment on a flexible, nimble, customer-driven future in our region that leverages public and private partnerships to maximize convenient mobility."

September 19, 2014
King County is developing a Youth Action Plan and needs your input

September 17, 2014
Dembowski statement on Metro Transit budget
“I’m also pleased that there is now consensus to delay further service cuts to allow the County Council to complete the King County Budget and for Seattle voters to act in November on Seattle’s Proposition 1. This is an approach that a majority of us on the County Council supported from the outset."

July 21, 2014
County Council approves transit service reductions compromise, preventing cuts to 200,000 service hours
”I appreciate the broad support expressed by today’s Council vote supporting a measured and budget-based approach to transit service changes. We listened to the community and today’s action is responsive to the concerns that have been raised. I thank my colleagues and Executive Constantine for their hard work in forging today’s legislation.”

July 7, 2014
Council approves blueprint for negotiations on operation of Harborview
“Harborview Medical Center is one of the nation’s top hospitals, run by a talented and committed team from the University of Washington for more than 40 years. Today’s motion is an important step forward in the process of completing a new management agreement that gives the Council a rare opportunity to reaffirm Harborview’s mission and assert that the hospital must be managed and operated in a manner that promotes equity and social justice in all sectors of its work, including the fair treatment of employees, providers, community partners and clients.”

June 23, 2014 
King County Council unanimously approves motion to address risk of shipping oil by rail
“We have seen the tragic results of catastrophic oil train derailments in other regions. With shipments of Bakken formation crude on the rise through King County, we must be prepared. It is important that we are ready to respond to any disaster that may threaten lives, our environment, or cause major disruption to our regional economy. King County is home to the spine of our regional rail infrastructure, which is critically important to our shipping and manufacturing sectors.”

May 21, 2014
King County Council gives unanimous support for development of a living wage policy
“We must clear away the hurdles between our residents and the promise of America, and a good-paying job is the best means to that end. This living wage policy will help many residents rise out of the ranks of the working poor and cross the threshold of the American Dream.”

May 12, 2014
Report shows County mental health and drug programs reducing costly jail and hospital stays
“Investments in our mental health and chemical dependency programs have paid dividends in the form of reduced jail time and psychiatric hospital stays.”

April 28, 2014
Encouraging economic development, conserving resources: County Council adopts Skykomish initiative
“We have a unique opportunity to both promote economic growth and tourism in the Skykomish Valley, while protecting forever some of our most treasured open space thanks to this partnership.”

April 23, 2014
County Executive and Council to take next steps with defeat of Proposition 1
“The impact of the forthcoming cuts will be widespread and impact every community in King County. I am committed to making them as fair as possible.”

April 22, 2014
Dembowski proposes motion to review risk of shipping oil by rail
“It is important that we are ready to respond to any disaster that may threaten lives, our environment, or cause major disruption to our regional economy. King County is home to the spine of our regional rail infrastructure, which is critically important to our shipping and manufacturing sectors.”

March 17, 2014
Celebrating their strength: King County proclaims March “Women’s History Month”
“Women’s History Month reminds us of the decades long struggle for women’s equality in the workplace, and provides the perfect opportunity to address the continued inequity women face.”

March 4, 2014
Dembowski: $440,000 for Kenmore Navigation Channel a collaborative effort
“I want to thank Congresswoman DelBene, Senators Murray and Cantwell, and Kenmore Mayor David Baker for their tireless efforts to include this important project on the Corps of Engineers’ work plan. This is an example of how we can have a positive impact for our economy by working together.”

February 24, 2014
County Council adopts Socially Responsible Banking Law
“I have made a commitment to the people of King County, that I will use every tool, deploy every proven strategy -- as well as try new ones -- and leverage all resources of this powerful government to combat poverty in King County, and this ordinance will be a powerful new tool in this fight.”

February 24, 2014
County Council approves transit fare increase, creation of low-income fare program
“I am proud of the financially responsible ordinance that we passed today. In raising fares to support Metro, and instituting a low-income fare to ensure all riders continue to have access to reliable transportation, we have reached the correct balance that I believe will benefit all of King County.”

February 10, 2014
Council approves formation of Transportation Benefit District
“I appreciate the unanimous approval of this critical legislation by my colleagues. It will allow us to ask the voters to make necessary investments in our transit and road systems.”

February 10, 2014
County Council prepared to partner with Executive on confronting inequities; climate change
“I was glad that the Executive highlighted the unacceptable inequities that exist in King County, especially among our greatest assets -- our kids. For example, as Highline School District Superintendent Susan Enfield stated in her welcoming remarks, only 15 percent of the Kindergartners at White Center Heights Elementary School were performing at-grade on day one of school. These unjust inequities are why I wrote the King County Youth Action Plan ordinance (Ordinance 2013-0420), which the council adopted earlier this year. I look forward to working with the Executive to implement this legislation, which renews King County’s commitment to making sure that 100 percent of our kids have an equal shot at success.”

February 6, 2014
King County Council starts work on “Living Wage” policy
“We must clear away the hurdles between our residents and the promise of America, and a good-paying job is the best means to that end. This living wage policy will help many residents rise out of the ranks of the working poor and cross the threshold of the American Dream.”

January 27, 2014
County Council completes 2014 reorganization with appointment of committee chairs
“I am committed to continuing the great work of Councilmember Phillips to prevent the cuts while protecting access to transit for our most vulnerable populations. I look forward to also leading the council’s work on economic development, pay equity and income disparity, affordable housing, and protecting our environment. These are all critical to King County’s quality of life and continued climb out of the Great Recession.”

January 27, 2014
County Council, Executive join “12th Man” in shouting GO HAWKS!!!
“From kids on school playgrounds—including my boys in their Seahawks gear—to the 12th man flags atop buildings, it is impossible to miss the passion of the 12th man across our region.”

January 22, 2014
New law prioritizes Children and Youth
“As a kid growing up in Renton, King County played an important role in my life. I played in our county parks, and received health care at our Public Health clinics. Today’s kids deserve our best efforts to ensure that they have every opportunity to grow up healthy, safe, and succeed in life.”

January 13, 2014
County Council adopts federal legislative agenda that builds on King County’s Strategic Plan
“These amendments highlight King County's commitment to serve all residents by promoting fairness and opportunity and eliminating inequities through efforts such as supporting comprehensive immigration reform and equal and fair pay for all working people.”

January 13, 2014
Promoting awareness to end Slavery and Human Trafficking
“Thousands of people are trafficked in the United States each year, and making the public aware of this very real problem is critical to ending it. I was pleased to lead the effort to fund a dedicated staff position to support King County’s Commercially Sexually Exploited Children (“CSEC”) Task Force in the 2014 Budget. I thank all of those involved for their dedication, and for the resources they have devoted to help end slavery and human trafficking.”

December 16, 2013
Council approves appointments for vacancies in state Legislature
“Jamie Pedersen has been a tremendous leader in his time as a State Representative, and I know he will continue to be a champion for his constituents as a State Senator. Brady Walkinshaw has stood up for social justice his entire career. He is a rising young leader in our state, and I am excited to see him head to Olympia.”

December 16, 2013
County Council deeply concerned about establishment of new coal terminals in Washington and Oregon
“Today, the King County Council took an important stand in the fight against global climate change. I strongly support our freight rail system and drafted language in the motion to express the importance of this system, but we cannot ignore the serious environmental and public health impacts that result from burning coal abroad and at home.”

December 16, 2013
Colleagues recognize, say goodbye to Councilmember Julia Patterson
“Julia’s unwavering commitment and advocacy for equity, social justice, and health and human services has greatly inspired me. She has left an indelible mark on the County Council as a champion for those less fortunate. It has been an absolute honor to work with Julia.”

December 9, 2013
Strengthening vital services, transportation options and investing in community assets highlight
King County’s state legislative agenda

“Growing up in a single-parent household in Renton, I know from personal experience that if you can get a little help, if you get a little support, that can make a huge difference. For that reason, I was pleased to offer amendments to the County’s legislative agenda that strengthen our efforts to meet the demand for a wide range of needed human services.”

October 22, 2013
King County Council celebrates Pro Bono Week
“As an attorney in private practice I worked on a number of pro bono cases on behalf of domestic violence survivors. This firsthand experience gave me a deep appreciation for the tireless work done by pro bono attorneys, on behalf of our most vulnerable. Our justice system is better for everyone, as a result of their efforts and dedication.”

October 21, 2013
“Blueprint” for implementing Department of Public Defense sent to the County Council
“I commend Councilmember Patterson for her thoughtful, diligent leadership on this critical legislation. The successful transition of King County’s public defense services to an in-house system could not have happened without her steady guidance.”

October 14, 2013
County Council calls on state Legislature to hold special session to address transportation funding
“I am proud to be part of this broad coalition of labor, businesses, cities, and bipartisan leaders advocating for a balanced statewide transportation plan to address the needs of our roads and transit infrastructure.”

September 27, 2013
Council adopts Dembowski ordinance giving public time to review annual proposed precinct alterations
“Increasing the transparency and engaging the public in the work we do at the County is paramount. I want to thank Director Huff for her help on this important legislation, as we both believe this ordinance will allow for greater public engagement in our elections process.”

September 23, 2013
Enhancing the safety of region’s waterways: Council approves “BUI” ordinance
“There are over 33 miles of shoreline in District 1. It is imperative that our waters are as safe as possible for recreation, and to do so we have to equip our local public safety officials with the tools necessary to enforce water safety.”

September 19, 2013
Ensuring that King County’s young people can reach their full potential: County leaders propose Youth Action Plan
“This legislation brings together the broad spectrum of participants from throughout the region who help King County’s children and youth to recommit our collective efforts and honor our obligations as adults to the next generation. I look forward to working with these leaders to reform, renew and reinvest in our work to help King County’s kids achieve their full potential.”

September 9, 2013
Ensuring transportation access for all: Panel recommends development of low-income transit fare
“It is essential that all residents, regardless of their income level, have access to public transportation. I look forward to exploring options for the implementation of a Low-Income Fare.”

September 4, 2013 
Dembowski and County Assessor Lloyd Hara to host Town Hall Meeting in Lake Forest Park
“I am honored to co-host this town hall to discuss property taxes with Assessor Hara. This will be an excellent opportunity for property owners to learn about exemptions and appeals, and the assistance our office can provide.”

August 21, 2013
Rod Dembowski commends action by Attorney General Bob Ferguson Affirming Women’s Reproductive Health Care Rights
“While we have received assurances from UW Medicine that such services are not implicated by the ‘strategic affiliation’, I believe this opinion will help further protect women’s reproductive health care rights, including patients served by UW Medicine at King County’s Harborview Hospital. It will also ensure that patients receiving care in our clinics have access to the full range of reproductive health services. When the contract with UW Medicine to operate Harborview Hospital comes up for consideration next year, I will work to ensure that patients continue to receive access to the full continuum of family planning and women’s health care services at Harborview into the future.”

August 19, 2013
County Council adopts updates to Metro Transit’s Strategic Plan
“I believe the process we used to update the plan was a model of cooperation of leaders throughout the region partnering together to improve this vital regional asset. Working together with the Sound Cities Association and the city of Seattle, we were able to address some of our region’s challenging transportation problems; I hope to see this model of cooperation followed in the future.”

August 12, 2013
King County Councilmember Rod Dembowski extends best wishes to victim in today’s senseless shooting, commends police action
“My thoughts are with the victim of today’s tragic shooting. I visited with the bus driver’s family at Harborview this morning to extend the County Council’s support. The responding officers’ actions are to be commended. Their quick and effective response prevented any further victims. I am very grateful for their service.”

July 22, 2013
County Council honors veterans of the “Forgotten War”
“It’s a privilege to be able to honor those who served and to celebrate the contributions of the Korean American Community to King County. The enduring friendship between the United States and The Republic of Korea has paid immeasurable dividends to both countries. We owe our Veterans the highest gratitude for their contributions to peace and prosperity.”

July 19, 2013
Regional Transit Committee approves update to Metro Transit’s Strategic Plan for Public Transportation
“Working together with the Sound Cities Association and the City of Seattle, we were able to address some of our region’s challenging transportation problems; I hope to see this model of cooperation followed in the future.”

July 1, 2013
County Council sends voters Charter Amendment on the organization of public defense
“I am pleased that the legislation being considered by the voters includes protection of the public defense function from interference and continues to focus on ensuring access to justice and equity in our criminal justice system, as proposed by the amendment I sponsored last week that is part of the final ordinance.”

June 27, 2013
Committee of the Whole adopts fostering and promoting access to justice and equity as duty of the Department of Public Defense
“In 2010, King County adopted a four-year strategic plan applying the countywide strategic plan principle of “fair and just” intentionally in all the county does in order to achieve equitable opportunities for all people and communities. Today’s amendment acknowledges the elements that make our public defender system one of the best in the country and enshrines those principles as duties of the Department of Public Defense in the constitution of King County.”

June 27, 2013
Charter amendment on the organization of public defense sent to County Council for final action
“The elements that make our public defender system one of the best in the country were recognized and slated to be enshrined in the constitution of King County. I thank our public defense and civil rights leaders for supporting my amendment to this legislation.”

June 26, 2013
King County Council unanimously approves sale of Brugger’s Bog Maintenance Facility to the city of Shoreline
“I am pleased that we were able to pass this ordinance, that will ensure Shoreline can effectively maintain its parks, streets, and utilities as the city grows. I appreciate the city of Shoreline’s commitment to work with the Shoreline Water District during its planning process for possible joint use of the site.”

June 24, 2013
King County honors first group of HERO Program graduates
“The transition from active duty service to the civilian workforce can be challenging. The HERO program serves as a valuable stepping-stone for veterans to reintegrate to civilian life.”

June 11, 2013
Council adopts legislation ensuring equity for all County employees serving in the military
“As the son of a Korean War veteran, I am proud to sponsor this legislation to ensure that our service members are treated equally and fairly while they defend our nation.”

June 3, 2013
Voters to decide in November on six-year levy for Medic One services
“This proposal is a model of regional cooperation and partnerships throughout King County. I thank the EMS Advisory Task Force for its work in proposing this renewed levy program.”

May 28, 2013
Dembowski joins veterans at Memorial Day Ceremony
Dembowski joined local veterans on Memorial Day and gave remarks commemorating the 60th Anniversary of the end of the Korean War at Acacia Memorial Park and Evergreen-Washelli Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery. Rod was joined by his father, Al Dembowski, a Korean War Army Veteran, and his sons Evan and Camden.

May 28, 2013
Surplus Vanpool vans prepare for new careers: Council approves donations to organizations throughout County
“I am pleased we are able to support these tremendous organizations that provide great services to our community.”

May 21, 2013
Council adopts Dembowski amendment on interim structure for King County’s Public Defense System
“This ordinance is an important first step forward in restructuring our public defense system in King County. I believe this amendment helps to preserve independence and the ability to advocate for important reforms while promoting system efficiencies and improvements.”

May 20, 2013 
County Council adopts interim structure for new Department of Public Defense with four separate divisions
“Today’s ordinance is an important first step forward in restructuring our public defense system in King County. I look forward to working with my colleagues and the community in the months ahead to build a system for the future that preserves independence, the ability to advocate for important reforms, and that is accountable to the taxpayers.”

May 20, 2013
King County proclaims Emergency Medical Services Week
“Our successful EMS system is a result of unprecedented regional cooperation and strong leadership by our EMS providers. I salute them for their incredible work.”

May 20, 2013
King County Council Honors Congressman Norm Dicks
“Senator Warren Magnuson’s ‘Bumblesbees’ continue to have an incredibly positive impact on our state. Norm Dicks is chief among them. I commend and thank him for a lifetime of service to our nation.”

May 14, 2013
Overflow audience calls for preservation of Metro service
“Today's public meeting displayed the broad coalition of supporters advocating for permanent and stable funding for our transit system. As Chair of the Regional Transit Committee, I am working with this coalition to avoid gridlock, keep people and goods moving, and our regional economy growing.”

May 13, 2012
Snoqualmie Valley project, I-90 changes highlight September 2013 Metro Transit service changes
“As Chair of the Regional Transit Committee, I am pleased to see successful regional cooperation. These are helpful efficiencies and cost saving measures that provide flexibility in the delivery of important transit services to all parts of the county.”

May 13, 2013
County Council recognizes officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice
“King County has some of the best and bravest law enforcement officers in the country, and many have paid the ultimate sacrifice to protect our region. I am glad we are taking the time to recognize and honor their legacy.”

May 6, 2013
Slowing the revolving door: Report shows mental illness and drug programs reducing jail, psychiatric stays
“This report shows that the investment in our mental health and chemical dependency programs have paid dividends in the form of reduced jail time and psychiatric hospital stays. These smart investments save taxpayers money and are a compassionate response to those in need of help.”

May 6, 2013
County Council approves blueprint for emergency medical service system
“Community partnerships play a key role in the regional EMS system. The strategic plan recognizes this role even as it lays the groundwork on keeping this internationally-recognized program the best in the world in providing life-saving care.”

May 2, 2013
Councilmember Rod Dembowski invites public to District 1 Town Halls
“I am committed to listening and learning from the residents of the District so county government can be as efficient, accountable, and responsive as possible.”

April 29, 2013
Council adopts Dembowski amendments to parks levy
“Voters need to see how their tax dollars are put to use. These amendments ensure greater transparency while strengthening our partnerships with cities throughout King County. I believe they make for a stronger parks proposal over the long term.”

April 29, 2013
Council sends proposed parks levy to August ballot
“This proposal funds operation of our current parks and regional trail system, and provides funds to acquire open spaces, and critical habitat lands. I thank the Citizens Parks Levy Task Force for its work in proposing this renewed levy program.”

April 15, 2013
Building on the present, preparing for the future: Council unanimously adopts 2013Equity and Social Justice work plan
“This plan will continue to guide the County Council in working towards fairness and opportunity for all of King County’s citizens.”

April 8, 2013
County Council approves new addition to successful mental health service model
“Adoption of the five-year Behavioral Health Services Plan marks an important new approach for our behavioral health system. The new focus on recovery and resiliency within a trauma-informed framework is consistent with best practices and is a promising development for helping those struggling with mental illness and chemical dependency issues heal and live productive lives.”

April 8, 2013
Recognizing the fallen: Council adopts plan to create King County Sheriff Deputy’s memorial
“I recall attending the memorial service for Deputy Sam Hicks in 1982 in Renton and am pleased that King County is going to formally and properly honor all of our county’s deputies who have made the ultimate sacrifice.”

March 30, 2013
County, partners and community celebrate Eastside Rail Corridor public ownership
“The Eastside Rail Corridor is an irreplaceable gift to future generations of Puget Sound residents, and I congratulate all of the leaders in our region who worked so hard for so many years to protect this critical corridor.”

March 18, 2013
County Council appoints Ketu Shah to fill vacancy in King County District Court
“Shah’s long record of experience, and successful track record in law will serve the residents of King County well.”

March 18, 2013
County Council approves proposed settlement with public defense employees
“Today’s action approving a hard-negotiated settlement gives King County the chance to end multi-year litigation and protects taxpayers from potentially costly further proceedings at a trial.”

March 11, 2013
Councilmember Rod Dembowski joins community leaders in call to action for Legislators to pass transportation funding options
“It is essential that leaders in Olympia adopt legislation this session to give local communities the tools we need to invest in transit and roads, to ensure that our economy can continue to prosper.”

March 5, 2013
Rod Dembowski takes Oath of Office for County Council District 1

March 1, 2013 
Dembowski applauds renewal of federal Violence Against Women Act
“Its expansion to protect Native Americans and the LGBT community recognizes that this powerful law can save lives.”

February 25, 2013
Dembowski to chair County Council’s Regional Transit Committee
“I am excited about the opportunity to help lead our region forward as we work together with our city partners to address critical transit issues.”

February 11, 2013
King County Council appoints Rod Dembowski to fill vacancy in County Council District 1
“I am proud and humbled to serve the residents of District 1 and all of King County."
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