Members receive State of the County Address from Executive Constantine
StoryThe members of the Metropolitan King County Council said they look forward to working with County Executive Dow Constantine in developing the regional cooperation needed to establish the “shared prosperity” called for in today’s State of the County Address.
“I continue to support the Executive’s initiatives striving for efficiencies and responding to the economic crisis facing King County and the entire world,” said Council Chair Larry Gossett. “Within King County, there are those that continue to live comfortably, but there are far too many that continue to live with economic uncertainty and various levels of need and poverty. As elected officials, it is the latter we must prioritize if we are to remain true to our commitment to equity and social justice.”
“I appreciate the Executive’s continued emphasis on creativity and collaboration,” said Council Vice Chair Jane Hague, whose Council district hosted the speech. “It’s important that we maintain our ‘smart and scrappy’ mentality so that as a government, we can continue to improve the way King County delivers services.”
“As the state addresses its fiscal challenges, the County will again show leadership by making tough—but sustainable—budget choices,” said Council Budget Chair Joe McDermott. “The Council and the Executive will continue the work to provide the support, services and environment to keep our region prosperous.”
The County Executive delivered his annual State of the County Address to Councilmembers at a special meeting of the Council at Bellevue City Hall. In the address, the Executive focused on his priorities for 2012, including a call for “shared prosperity” throughout King County.
Constantine said to achieve that shared prosperity, the county must continue rebuilding its infrastructure to improve passenger and freight mobility. He called for continued support for the expansion of the State Convention Center, and continued collaboration similar to the effort to keep construction of the next generation Boeing 737 in the region.
“As our communities struggle with economic hardship, it is critically important that we continue to find efficiencies that free up valuable resources so they can be re-invested back into services South King County residents depend on, such as transit and public health,” said Councilmember Julia Patterson. “I want to compliment Executive Constantine on his leadership and share his commitment to the LEAN philosophy that has made our government more efficient and responsive.”
“I’ve appreciated Executive Constantine’s ongoing collaborative approach in working with the Council. As we move forward into the New Year, it's important that we find new ways to reform government in order to best serve our citizens,” said Councilmember Reagan Dunn. “As Chair of the Regional Transit Committee, I will continue to work towards a more efficient and fair Metro system to maximize its benefit to transit riders as a whole.”
The Executive also called for a partnership to revitalize business districts in Vashon and Fall City, continued support for agriculture and the promotion of agri-tourism and recreation throughout the county.
“I appreciate the emphasis on support for transportation options and renewable energy as essential to our sustainable, shared economic prosperity,” said Councilmember Kathy Lambert, who serves as Vice Chair of the Budget Committee. “Continuing with efficiencies through the use of technology will keep us lean and responsive, such as the recent launch of the Accountable Business Transformation project that updated 35-year-old accounting systems. Streamlining customer service with a single point of contact will need to benefit the rural as much as the urban areas as we work toward One King County.”
“As Chair of the Council’s Government Accountability, Oversight, and Financial Performance Committee, I look forward to working with the Executive to continue reforming King County government to make it more efficient, transparent, and responsive to the people of King County,” said Councilmember Bob Ferguson.