January 25, 1999
(From left) King County Executive Ron Sims, County Councilman Brian Derdowski, Fall City Community Association representative Lee Alexander, King County Sheriff Dave Reichert, and Licensing Manager Jim Buck help cut the ribbon at the grand opening of the Fall City Community Service Center last week.
Maple Valley resident Bob Dixon purchases a pet license from Community Service Center staff member Margee Plattner.
by Lisa Allen, Valley View editor
FALL CITY--The sixth King County Community Service Center opened officially here last week to great fanfare, but it was business as usual for residents who found themselves squeezing by high-profile county politicians to get to the counter.
Bob Dixon, from Maple Valley, was in Fall City for a meeting. He came to the center to buy a pet license. "I heard it was here, so I just stopped in," he said.
And that is the reason, officials said at the ceremony, that county government has continued to branch out into suburban communities.
"Three years ago, the county decided that services should be rendered locally," said King County Executive Ron Sims. "The government is best in people's neighborhoods. We try to be a government that listens and responds and is accessible to residents."
Over the last two years, community centers have opened at Cottage Lake, Lake Wilderness, Northshore, Sammamish, and Vashon Island.
Jim Buck, King County Manager of Licensing, said the centers have been very successful. "It's a long way to downtown and people don't want to go there," he said. "We have been keeping track of those who are using the services and they are clearly drawing from the community. Plus they are open in the evenings."
Buck said computers in the center are networked so that residents can get information they need on just about any service.
Bob Derrick, Director of the Department of Developmental and Environmental Services, said that building permit staff are already available at the Fall City center. "We hope to have permits soon, as well," he said. "We would also like to have a large contingent of inspectors working out of here. We are not quite there yet, but people will soon be able to track their permits on our website."
Available at the centers are business, marriage and pet licenses, assessment information, concealed pistol license renewals, recycling information, meeting agendas, property tax payment collection, King County job postings and applications, voter registration, Metro schedules, and general information.
The center is open Wednesdays and Thursdays, noon-8 p.m. and Fridays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. A King County Sheriff's Office community police officer is available daily, by appointment. Call 222-7300 or 206-405-5811. Residential building permit services are available Wednesdays, 12-5, Thursdays, 9-6 and Fridays, 7-4. Call 206-205-7343 or 425-222-7358.
Agriculture program information is available on Wednesdays, 12-5, and flood hazards, fish habitat restoration, and water quality information is available on Thursdays, 12-5. Call 206-205-5360.
The center is located at 33409 SE 43rd St. across from the Fall City fire station. Call 425-222-7689 or 206-205-7345.