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King County Executive
Dow Constantine


Executive calls for strategic investments in 10 economic development programs to help stimulate job creation

Summary

Ten economic development programs that work to stimulate the creation of new jobs in King County would receive $95,221 in assets from the dissolution of an obsolete public corporation, under a pair of ordinances sent to the County Council today by King County Executive Dow Constantine.

Story

Ten economic development programs that work to stimulate the creation of new jobs in King County would receive $95,221 in assets from the dissolution of an obsolete public corporation, under a pair of ordinances sent to the County Council today by King County Executive Dow Constantine.

“Standing on the cusp of economic recovery from the greatest recession of our lifetimes, we need to invest in solutions that will help us build prosperity and get people back to work,” said Executive Constantine. “These one-time funds can help lay the foundation for job creation now and in the future."

One proposed ordinance would dissolve the King County Economic Enterprise Corporation (KCEEC), a public corporation created by county ordinance in 1984 to issue tax-exempt industrial revenue bonds that fostered local economic development. The corporation issued 16 bonds totaling $48,418,000 on behalf of local businesses that used the bond proceeds to finance the construction of buildings and purchase of equipment that created an estimated 649 direct jobs.

In 1990, the State Legislature created the Washington Economic Development Finance Authority (WEDFA) to perform the same function as the KCEEC statewide. By dissolving the KCEEC, the County can stop duplicating this work and save public resources, while continuing to fulfill the original mission of fostering economic development. The KCEEC has no property to administer and no outstanding obligations.

In the spirit of the original intent of the funds, a second proposed ordinance would re-appropriate the KCEEC’s remaining assets of $95,221 to 10 different regional economic development projects, including five that directly benefit unincorporated communities:

  •  $5,221 to the Puget Sound Regional Council’s Prosperity Partnership, to update the Regional Economic Strategy for Central Puget Sound. The Strategy will identify industrial clusters where King County has competitive advantages and develop strategies to create more jobs in these clusters. 
  •  $10,000 to enterpriseSeattle, to help perform an economic impact analysis of the financial services cluster in King County and develop a business program to leverage the presence of such firms as Russell Investments and JP Morgan Chase and create more jobs in this cluster.
  • $10,000 to the Cascade Harvest Coalition, for farmer website listings and a targeted marketing campaign to support rural agriculture. 
  •  $10,000 to the Center for Advanced Manufacturing Puget Sound at Green River Community College in Kent, to develop a manufacturing capabilities database that will increase supply chain opportunities for local manufacturers. 
  •  $10,000 to the Procurement Technical Assistance Center at Highline Community College, to help 20 King County-certified small contractor and supplier firms secure public contracts. 
  •  $10,000 to the White Center Community Development Association, to implement a “Growing a Global Village” business district brand under the White Center Business District Revitalization Plan that includes a public mural and 10 street banners.
  • $10,000 to Impact Capital in Skyway, for completion of one or more community development projects identified in the Skyway Solutions Plan. 
  •  $10,000 to the University of Washington’s Department of Architecture, to design storefront improvements for the revitalization of the Fall City business district, and $10,000 for similar design work for the Vashon business district. The county’s Historic Preservation Program will explore making loan funds available for the façade improvements.
  • $10,000 to the Worker Center, for a special outreach program to recruit minorities and women as apprentices to the construction trades.

The ten programs are all aligned with the Economic Growth and Built Environment Goal in the King County Strategic Plan, and address both regional and local economic development issues and needs.

The proposed ordinances must be adopted by the Metropolitan King County Council.



King County Executive
Dow Constantine
Dow constantine portrait

Read the Executive's biography