King County to host town hall Thursday

Several King County officials will be on Vashon Thursday to host the annual town hall/open house event.

Featured guests will include County Councilmember Joe McDermott, Budget Director Dwight Dively and Sheriff John Urquhart. Other county representatives will be there as well, including Christie True, director of the Department of Natural Resources and Parks; Harold Taniguchi, director of the Department of Transportation, and representatives from the Department of Permitting and Environmental Review, the assessor’s office, public health and community and human services.

Community Service Area Manager Alan Painter said the yearly event provides important opportunities.

“It gives the residents of Vashon and Maury Islands the chance to be face to face with their local representatives,” he said. “We want to broaden ways that the county is accessible to local residents, and this is one of those ways.”

The featured guests are expected to deliver brief remarks and provide information on key community initiatives or issues, as well as what the county will do or has done about them, Painter said. Some topics that might come up include the potential renewal of the Veterans and Human Services Levy and possible opportunities for funding from it, including chemical dependency treatment, affordable housing and the Vashon Senior Center. Comments about marijuana sales in Vashon Town, for the Community Service Area Plan, will also be accepted; there may be information available regarding living with predators, and people should feel free to bring up other issues on their minds.

“Hopefully we will be prepared to give answers,” he said.

Painter noted that the meeting provides an opportunity for the county to address rumors and for islanders to ask about any county-related issues that they might feel they are not getting a satisfactory response to.

“The right people will be in the room to make sure it is followed up on. We cannot guarantee satisfaction, but we can guarantee a response,” he said.

The meeting will be from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, April 20, at McMurray Middle School.