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April 16, 2018
County Council approves expanding housing opportunities
“For many in our communities, stable housing is a ticket out of generational poverty. I’m very pleased to have sponsored this ordinance, the passage of which this month was especially fitting as it reflects the 50th Anniversary of the Federal Fair Housing Act.”

April 6, 2018
Kohl-Welles: Backpage shutdown closes avenue used to support human trafficking
“This has been a battle that has stretched over two decades. From Olympia to King County, I have worked in collaboration with government agencies and human service organizations to help end this heinous practice that has shattered lives.”

March 22, 2018
Bill focused on preventing newborn abandonment signed into law
"With this law, we will continue and enhance our efforts to educate struggling new parents on their options."

March 19, 2018
Councilmembers: 4Culture vote “Micromanaging a nationally-recognized organization”
“We should support 4Culture’s continued commitment to both geographic and ethnic diversity in the art and heritage programs it funds, not go backward by politicizing the way arts are funded in King County.”

March 19, 2018
County Council joins young people in calling for end to gun violence
“These students are not political tools, they are political activists. I applaud them for their civic involvement and deep personal commitment to critical changes that I wholeheartedly support. Their youth doesn’t invalidate their morals and intelligence, and their precious lives are in the crosshairs. Now is the time for the reforms they demand.”

March 12, 2018

County Council wishes calm seas and bountiful catches to fishing crews preparing to head to Alaska
“These crews and their captains face a level of danger that most of us will never confront in our workplace, and they do so year after year.”  

March 6, 2018
Baby Kimball Tragedy Spurs Newborn Surrender Legislation
“To help prevent future tragedies, especially the death of newborns, it is crucial to have current and accurate data to guide public outreach strategies.”

March 5, 2018
Women’s History Month Proclaimed by Council
“While celebrating how far we’ve come we must also acknowledge the work that remains to be done. We must work to ensure that all women, regardless of socioeconomic status, age, racial and ethnic background, sexual orientation, or ability, are treated equitably.”

March 5, 2018
A Gender-Neutral County Code is One Step Closer
“Words matter and language that accurately references gender and our diverse roles in society is a small but important step towards building a more inclusive and understanding King County.”

February 26, 2018
Council adopts guidelines for immigrant and refugee assistance that make King County a “National Model”
“Today, we stand together to send a strong message of inclusion to immigrant and refugee communities of King County: You are welcome here.”

February 5, 2018
Kohl-Welles to host joint Town Hall
“I look forward to this opportunity to discuss several important topics with my constituents, and to hear what other issues are most important to our community. I hope for a great turnout and an even greater conversation.” 

January 29, 2018
Council approves legal assistance for families during inquest process
“Today we heard intensely personal and heartbreaking stories from family members, and this is simply the right thing to do.”

January 29, 2018
Council approves creation of Immigrant and Refugee Commission
“I am proud to serve a community that engages and empowers its newest Americans rather than ostracizing them.”

January 29, 2018
County Council recognizes ongoing work to end Human Trafficking
“The scourge of these crimes continues, but thanks to the early and continuing efforts of Emma Catague, Velma Veloria, and Sutapa Basu, among others, we have powerful tools to use in fighting these horrors and inhumanities.”

December 11, 2017
Council bans solitary confinement for youth in detention
“It is our responsibility to make sure all young people in detention have the access and opportunity they need to reach their full potential, such as educational programming required under state law.”

December 11, 2017
Council acts to support West Point employees and strengthen safeguards at treatment facility
“These two pieces of legislation will help the Wastewater Treatment Division take the necessary steps to ensure that West Point is prepared to both prevent future floods as well as manage peak flows and respond to potential emergency situations.”  

December 4, 2017
Council takes first steps to making County Code Gender-Neutral
“Referring to females as generic males or Councilmembers as Councilmen doesn't cut it. Gender-neutral language was adopted by the federal government decades ago by state in the past ten years ago. King County can do it, too.” 

November 20, 2017
Council accepts reports on steps to address labor trafficking
“Labor trafficking is an insidious and oftentimes invisible epidemic and it is imperative we take steps as a regional government, and as a community, to address its systemic nature and reach survivors. I am very pleased the Council is taking this important next step and look forward to upcoming legislation that will work to implement these recommendations.” 

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.

October 30, 2017
Extending period for Property Tax Refunds
“Changing the refund period from 3 to 6 years is a fair approach to an issue that can be easily proven and easily fixed. No one should pay more than he or she should have to pay because of an error made by the County.”

October 30, 2017
TOUCHDOWN SEAHAWKS! Council Recognizes Anniversary of Community Effort to Keep the Seattle Seahawks Flying In Seattle
“The Seahawks are a remarkable part of our region’s history and culture and it’s a great pleasure as well as a relief that we still are able to enjoy our Seahawks today.”

October 30, 2017
Information on Keeping Infants Asleep—and Alive
“Implementing this program through the Public Health—Seattle & King County’s Office of Vital Statistics, where birth certificates are issued, makes use of an important opportunity to provide education materials on safe sleep for infants.”  

October 23, 2017
Council approves program to boost funding for housing
“All King County residents deserve the opportunity to have a safe, healthy, accessible and affordable home. I am pleased we now have the opportunity for KCHA to provide the means to expand affordable housing options for low-income and infirm residents in King County.”

October 11, 2017
Kohl-Welles delivers former County employees into “Working Retirement”
“It’s been heartwarming to deliver these vans to very worthwhile organizations in our communities. All are now being put to use in helping those in need and to kids who will benefit from participating in wilderness programs.”  

October 9, 2017
Kohl-Welles acts to keep transit along First Avenue
“If we had not taken these steps today, a densely populated area with steep hills that runs from the waterfront up to Third Avenue, would see its transit service disappear in March 2018.”  

October 6, 2017
Kohl-Welles: Contraceptive rollback “fiscally irresponsible, ineffective, and counterproductive”
“Creating cost barriers to contraceptives is not only an attack on basic rights, it's fiscally irresponsible, ineffective, and counterproductive. The ‘unintended’ consequences if this rule remains in effect, would be enormous.” 

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.” 

October 2, 2017
Celebrating talent in all forms: County Council declares October Disability Awareness Month
“Disability Awareness Month is a great opportunity to recognize and celebrate all the variously abled individuals who strengthen our community through their talents and qualifications.”

September 25, 2017
Council adopts call for County to continue advancing the goals of Paris Climate Agreement
“From investing in zero-emissions buses to protecting our migrating salmon despite rising temperatures—we will work tirelessly on all levels to safeguard the health, beauty and natural resources of the Pacific Northwest for generations to come.”  

July 24, 2017
Council approves transfer of surplus vanpool vans to organizations in District 4
“I am thrilled to be able to provide these community partners with a retired vanpool van. These vans still have a lot of life left in them and I’m glad to see them put to good use serving our County residents.”

July 24, 2017
New careers for “retiring” County employees
“I am thrilled to be able to provide our community partners with retired vanpool vans.”

July 20, 2017
Statement on Veterans, Seniors and Human Service Levy going to voters in November
“Today’s action will allow voters the opportunity to decide whether to fund services so that vulnerable populations across our County can be connected to housing, services and evidence-based programming. These populations include; veterans, seniors, survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking, and many more.” 

June 26, 2017
Council approves sale of Convention Place Station for Convention Center expansion
“This well-crafted agreement will ensure the increased economic benefit is shared by the entire community through new jobs, extending the length of time before buses exit the tunnel, and increased funding for affordable housing.”

June 26, 2017
Council celebrates Centennial of Ballard Locks
“History and function come together at the Locks to create an experience that can include walking through the surrounding botanical gardens, learning about the locks as an essential pathway for migratory salmon and enjoying the fish ladder viewing room, or touring the vital infrastructure.”  

June 19, 2017
“Smokin’ on the Water” National Champion UW Women’s Crew Team Recognized by County Council
“The outstanding performances, achievements and victories by the UW Women’s Rowing Program embody not only the spirit and goals of Title IX but also the legacy of superior education and athletics at the University of Washington. These exceptional athletes will inspire young girls to get involved in high school and college sports for years to come.”  

June 14, 2017
Bill focused on preventing newborn abandonment passes out of State Senate
“This bill will continue our efforts to educate struggling parents who are unable to care for a newborn on the law that allows them to safely surrender their child without fear of prosecution or repercussions. I urge the House of Representatives to take action.” 

June 13, 2017
County Council adopts steps to review operation of West Point Treatment Plant
“A lot has happened since West Point came online over 50 years ago, including enormous population growth. As West Point is the workhorse of our wastewater treatment system, it is essential to determine the effects of such changes on its current capacity and what needs to be done to ensure its viability for decades to come.”  

June 12, 2017
County Council appoints Javier Valdez to State House
“I commend Rep. Valdez on his demonstrated leadership, commitment to equity in public service, and his willingness to step up for this critically important job. I am confident he will be an exceptional representative for the 46th Legislative District and leader in our state.” 

May 22, 2017
Kohl-Welles recognizes Allan Panitch’s contributions to the community with MLK Medal of Distinguished Service
“Allan has demonstrated his dedication and service to youth and to our most vulnerable citizens throughout his entire adult life.”

May 2, 2017
Kohl-Welles: “Access for All” is going to voters
“If approved, the program will be funded by a 0.1 percent increase in the county sales tax, which would be 1 cent for every $10 spent. It will generate an estimated $67 million each year over the next seven years.”  

May 1, 2017
Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles Statement on the Passing of Mike Lowry
“I found Mike to be a humble man who worked tirelessly to effect social change where it was needed, and I will miss that tenacity.”  

April 24, 2017
Protecting the rights of Juveniles in Custody
“Just as adults are entitled to an attorney, it is our responsibility to make sure children and youth are able to have an attorney available to them as well. This can be especially important during a time they may be confused, afraid or vulnerable. I am pleased to co-sponsor this legislation and remain committed to working on diverting youth from the justice system altogether.” 

April 17, 2017
County Council approves funds to assist immigrants and refugees
“I have always believed our legislative efforts should advance equity, reflect social justice, and promote safety in our region. Historically and presently King County has been and is made up of immigrants and refugees and we must stand together today and always.”  

April 12, 2017
Councilmembers Statement on Access for All
“By conducting a hearing on the measure in the Budget Committee this morning, the Council was able to have an open and honest discussion about priorities, opportunities, challenges and concerns. Although we did not take action today, we look forward to working with our colleagues to improve the proposal and find a path forward to placing the Access for All proposal on the August ballot.”

April 10, 2017
Recognizing survivors and raising awareness to stop sexual violence
“Awareness is necessary for prevention and intervention of sexual assault, and support for survivors living with shame and stigma, but we must also create a change in our culture by identifying and interrupting norms and behaviors perpetuating this crisis. In doing so, we must focus on age-appropriate awareness, from early years, through K-12 schooling, and on college campuses.”  

March 13, 2017
Council Approves Independent Investigation of West Point Treatment Plant Disaster
“Teamwork has paid off, as we’ve reached agreement on the Council’s leading this effort in consultation with the Executive branch.” 

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 7, 2017
Public invited to meeting on repairs to the West Point Treatment Plant
“This is a chance for the public to hear what went wrong, what will be done to fix the problem and what's being done to make sure this never happens again.” 

March 6, 2017
County Council Women’s History Month proclamation recognizes, celebrates the challenges and contributions of women
“While celebrating how far we’ve come, we must also acknowledge the work remaining to be done. We must work to ensure that all women, regardless of socioeconomic status, age, racial and ethnic background, sexual orientation, or ability, is treated equitably.”

March 6, 2017
County Council Replaces Carbon-Based Power with Clean Wind-Generated Electricity
“I am excited the County and Puget Sound Energy will work together as we continue to innovate in producing clean and renewable energy for our region.”  

March 6, 2017
County Council joins in wishing “safe fishing” to crews preparing to head to Alaska
“Commercial fishing has been a foundation of our economy for over a century. Fishers risk their lives, and their families risk the loss of their loved ones every year. The fishing industry is an integral part of our King County community. We also acknowledge the many years of participation by the Ballard First Lutheran Church in the annual Blessing of the Fleet. We wish the fleet an abundant and abundantly healthy start of the season!”

March 1, 2017
Emergency action to speed repairs of West Point Treatment Plant
“I felt given the magnitude of the disaster the Council needed to act quickly, comprehensively, and responsibly. Puget Sound is iconic, beautiful, and a driver of our local ecosystem—what happened must never happen again.”

January 30, 2017
Kohl-Welles Issues Statement on Unconstitutional Immigration Ban
“I’m very much concerned that the events that have occurred since President Trump took office have not themselves been vetted for constitutionality, legality OR simple human decency. We have people arriving with visas that have been denied entry into our country. That is an outrage and goes against established custom in our country and internationally.” 

January 9, 2017
County Council recognizes ongoing work to end Human Trafficking
“Because of our region’s ports, our shared international border with Canada, Sea-Tac International Airport and access to I-5, King County has long been a hotspot in the international trafficking of persons. Human trafficking is an extreme violation of human rights that threatens the health and welfare of all our communities.”

November 17, 2016
Kohl-Welles Secures Funding for District Four Facilities, Public Health, Metro Access and Other Priority Programs
“As Chair of the Health, Housing and Human Services Committee, I’m extremely pleased we were able to increase funding for public health,” said Kohl-Welles. “We will fund a new program to screen for lead poisoning, especially in children, and will be able to hire an epidemiologist to focus on combatting communicable diseases.”

November 14, 2016
Commitment to public safety, homelessness and transportation highlight King County Budget
“I am pleased we will continue our commitment to invest in our young people and will fund additional shelters and emergency services for the homeless. I am proud we funded critical needs in Public Health around prevention of both communicable diseases and lead poisoning. And I am pleased we funded further study into best practices to combat human trafficking in King County.”

November 7, 2016
County Council recognizes the life and work of State Senator Andy Hill
“As a state senator working with Sen. Hill from the time he first started as a freshman, I became impressed right away with his courage and willingness to stand up for his beliefs. A good example is his having voted for my medical marijuana licensing system legislation, even though his caucus leadership opposed it.”

October 10, 2016
County Council recognizes, celebrates history and heritage of Latino/Latina Community in King County
“People of Latinx ancestry are 9.4 percent of the population of King County. The contributions of generations of Latinx elected officials, educators, workers, artists, business leaders and community organizations have helped create the thriving economy and society we enjoy in King County today.” 

October 3, 2016
County recognizes and celebrates value of workers with disabilities
“Here at King County we welcome the talents of all people, and will continue to work to remove barriers that get in the way of full participation by all residents.”

September 19, 2016
County Council approves “transformative” implementation plan for Best Starts for Kids
“The BSK programs will ensure that ALL children in King County get the best possible start in life and are able to sustain their gains through young adulthood and throughout their lives. Kudos to Executive Constantine for spearheading this important initiative.”

September 19, 2016
Recognizing sacrifice: County Council approves naming new facility at Boeing Field in honor of fallen firefighter
“The role of Boeing during WWII helped build the region we know today. It’s important to remember our history, and to recognize those who sacrificed. By honoring Luther Dean Bonner today we are honoring all our first responders who put themselves at risk every day in the course of doing their jobs.”

September 15, 2016
Kohl-Welles: Liquor and Cannabis Board responds to call for testing of legal marijuana for pesticides
“The LCB’s plan to work with the Washington State Department of Agriculture to randomly test products and to test samples after consumer complaints appears to help this new industry begin to provide safer cannabis products.”

September 12, 2016
King County Council recognizes National Recovery Month
“Sadly, I’ve just learned first-hand about the crucial importance of drug treatment. My husband called me this morning while I was on the bus to work to tell me that our 26 year-old nephew had died of an overdose last night. He had been in and out of treatment for an opioid addiction. Recovery can take years and the availability of affordable and quick treatment for people in crisis can save lives.”

September 7, 2016
Council committee approves blueprint for Best Starts for Kids
“This program was approved last year by a huge majority of voters, who recognized the need to invest in the future of our children and communities. Kudos to Executive Constantine for spearheading this important initiative.”

September 6, 2016
Measures to prevent lead poisoning in King County
“Public Health of Seattle and King County estimates that more than eight thousand children in King County may have elevated blood lead levels and the state Department of Health reports that only a fraction of children exposed to lead in King County and Washington state actually receive blood lead-level tests. We are encouraging all King County health care providers to screen all children at ages twelve and twenty-four months for lead levels.”

September 1, 2016
Council committee discusses steps to keep pesticides out of cannabis
“The state is not conducting regular testing of retail marijuana products to determine whether and where these harmful substances are being sold to consumers. This issue is especially important in light of the minimal amount of research that has been conducted on the health impacts of pesticides in marijuana – especially since those impacts may vary when the substance is inhaled.”  

August 29, 2016
County Council acknowledges achievements and challenges facing women
“In 2015, female full-time workers made only 79 cents for every dollar earned by men. While that’s better than the 58.9 cents they earned in 1963, if we continue at the pace of the last fifty years, it will take until 2060 for women to finally reach pay parity with men. We’ve come a long way, but we have yet to achieve full gender equity.”

July 18, 2016
County Council recognizes math champ Edward Wan
“His remarkable mathematical skills as well as his passion for learning and for helping others learn sets an inspiring example to students in King County and across the country. I applaud his remarkable achievements.”  

July 11, 2016
County Council to protect vulnerable lives
“A struggling parent that is unable to care for a newborn child is already able to safely surrender that child in King County without fear of prosecution or repercussions. Today’s action will further distribute that information so parents most at-risk, such as adolescents, are made aware of this option just as they feel they have no choice left.”

July 11, 2016
Amendment to make King County Charter gender neutral sent to voters
“Today’s action will allow voters the opportunity to ensure the language of the King County Charter is inclusive and does not reflect bias.”

June 6, 2016
County Council recognizes LGBTQ Pride Month
“The month of June is an opportunity to celebrate one of our County’s greatest strengths, our diversity. I’m honored to stand beside LGBTQ individuals in our community to celebrate Pride and continue to fight for equal rights.”

May 23, 2016
County Council recognizes history, heritage of Asian Pacific Islanders
“It is the full history of both inclusion and exclusion that is formative of the Asian Pacific Islander experience in King County and across the United States. By replacing the word ‘American’ with ‘Islander’, we acknowledge all people of API descent, including those who aren’t necessarily citizens, but have sacrificed to make King County the inclusive, diverse, and culturally rich place that we strive to be.”

May 23, 2016
County Council recognizes effort to provide instruments to students
“Music is a gift that every child and young person can benefit from through participation in music education. No one should be denied that opportunity because of challenges with affordability. I am pleased to recognize Music4Life today and urge anyone with spare instruments to donate!” 

May 9, 2016
County Council approves first program from Best Starts for Kids Levy
“We now have a roadmap to move forward and immediately begin the process of delivering these client-centered services where they are needed most, such that the family or youth will be asked? ‘What do you need so that you do not become homeless?’ ”

May 5, 2016
Councilmember Kohl-Welles meets with Senator Patty Murray

May 3, 2016
County Council recognizes history and success of University of Washington Crew
“From the 1900s to today, University of Washington rowers have demonstrated a commitment to hard work, persistence, and teamwork in the face of great obstacles. They have used those skills to build one of the most successful programs in the country for women and men.” 

May 2, 2016
Council approves new ballot drop off boxes in District 4
“While the number of locations will be fewer than some suburban and rural communities, these drop off sites will be a great benefit to the voters throughout the district.”  

April 25, 2016
Metro Transit examines greening its fleet
“I am honored to co-sponsor this significant motion and look forward to reading Metro’s report on the feasibility of a carbon neutral fleet.”

March 28, 2016
Kohl-Welles responds to today’s State of the County Address
“Executive Constantine is correct to start focusing on the ST3 proposal, but I have a concern on the current plan that would have light rail arrive in Ballard 5 years after its arrival in West Seattle when the Ballard extension has nearly three times the forecasted ridership.”

March 21, 2016
King County residents receive MLK Medal of Distinguished Service
“As Director of the Queen Anne Helpline for 30 years, Pat Sobeck’s legacy is sure to live on through the many volunteers who embody her spirit of service and the countless recipients of her tireless advocacy.”

March 21, 2016
“Retiring” County employees prepare for new careers
“These non-profits do incredible work on behalf of our community and I am glad to be able to provide them with a necessary means of transportation to continue their good work. I look forward to seeing these vans in action across District Four and elsewhere in the coming months!”

March 7, 2016
Celebrating their strength: King County proclaims March “Women’s History Month”
“It is important we take this moment to celebrate the accomplishments of all women and equally important that we recognize the work that is yet to be done to ensure women of all socio-economic statuses, ages, racial and ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, abilities and disabilities have the same opportunities as our male counterparts.”

February 29, 2016
County Council joins in wishing “safe fishing” to crews preparing to head to Alaska
“This is a meaningful event that honors the efforts and commemorates the lives of those who risk everything working at an industry that is so central to our region’s history, culture, and cuisine.”

February 16, 2016
County Council recognizes history and contributions of African-Americans
“By recognizing Black History Month, we honor the history and legacy of the African-American experience. In celebrating that history, we must also never forget the deprivations and degradations and the struggle to overcome them that are a unique legacy of the lives of African-Americans in this country.”

January 28, 2016
Kohl-Welles to Chair Health, Housing and Human Services and Regional Water Quality
“I look forward to meeting the challenges of the coming year and working towards a more equitable, healthy, vibrant and sustainable King County.”

January 25, 2016
Council approves members of King County Children and Youth Advisory Board
“I am grateful to the members of the Children and Youth Advisory Board for their willingness to serve, advise and share their knowledge and experience to guide this process.”  

January 12, 2016
Kohl-Welles’ swearing in touches on past, focuses on future
“I love being in a non-partisan body, working with highly committed, thoughtful, and talented colleagues and staff in a collaborative setting, tackling real issues in a more immediate way than what is the norm in the legislature.”

January 12, 2016
Kohl-Welles joins in recognition of legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
“Dr. King’s legacy of promoting peace, freedom, equality and justice for all through peaceful demonstration and the principal of love is as important today as it was 50 years ago. I look forward to working with my colleagues, constituents and our community this coming year to uphold these values.”

Contact Councilmember
Kohl-Welles

Main phone:
206-477-1004

TTY/TDD:
206-296-1024

Fax:
206-296-0198