King County cancels most in-person meetings, moves to Skype

Responding to the COVID-19 outbreak, non-essential in-person meetings for March have been called off.

King County is telling its employees to telecommute if they can, and moving meetings to Skype instead of holding them in the downtown Seattle courthouse.

The operational change was announced on March 3. All non-essential county in-person meetings that garner large groups will be cancelled through the end of March. The county will need to determine which meetings are essential, and limit the number of people present. Most essential and non-essential meetings that remain will be conducted over Skype or teleconference calls.

Employees who can telecommute to work are being encouraged to do so. The move comes amid the COVID-19 outbreak which has killed 10 in Washington state, and another in California.

County council member Kathy Lambert said staff from many departments are being redirected to fight the COVID-19 outbreak. This will affect county functions.

“We’re asking people to be patient, that things aren’t going to be as quick as normal,” Lambert said. “…Everyday things aren’t going to get priority as the pandemic now has the priority.”

The county’s online calendar will be updated to reflect which meetings will be held via Skype. There will be at least one more in-person county council meeting next week, where high-priority items will be addressed.

Lambert said county staff are so busy dealing with the outbreak that they are no longer doing individual briefings for members of the media as well as elected officials. She described the response as fluid, with staff responding as quickly as possible.

Lambert also encouraged people to stop shaking hands, saying it could spread the virus. Instead, she suggested people greet each other by waving or placing their hands over their hearts.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@federalwaymirror.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.federalwaymirror.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

Drive-thru COVID-19 virus testing last week in the parking lot near Everett Memorial Stadium in Everett. A study by the University of Washington and UnitedHealth Group, conducted at Everett Clinic locations, found that a less-intrusive form of the coronavirus test would require fewer precautions by health care workers. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
New self-swab COVID-19 test is just as accurate, study finds

The study, under peer review, was led by an Everett Clinic doctor. It could speed up testing nationwide.

St. Francis Hospital staff thank Federal Way community for support during virus outbreak

From medical supplies and meals to coffee and handwritten notes, emergency department staff say they feel the love from Federal Way.

Life Care Center (LCC) of Kirkland is facing more than $600,000 in fines for its response to the COVID-19 outbreak in its facility. Samantha Pak/Sound Publishing
Life Care in Kirkland facing more than $600K in fines for COVID-19 response

The facility has until Sept. 16 to pay or address areas of concern or it will be terminated.

Man, 37, found with gunshot wound to the back in Federal Way McDonald’s parking lot

The man was transported to Harborview Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.

Dentist checking patient’s teeth. Sound Publishing file photo
Dental foundation serves Medicaid patients through COVID-19

The Arcora Foundation is also attempting to expand its urgent care database, allowing those with different insurances to use its services during the outbreak.

Gov. Jay Inslee during a press conference April 2, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Gov. Inslee’s Facebook page)
Gov. Inslee extends stay-home order to May 4

As in other states, demand for intensive health care due to COVID-19 is expected to peak later in April.

Unemployment claims continue to climb

For the week of March 22-28, claims have reached more than 181,000.

Inslee to state businesses: Pivot to make medical equipment

The governor said Wednesday that the state must become self-reliant in the fight against COVID-19.

Most Read