King County this week announced that Executive Dow Constantine transmitted his ninth COVID emergency supplemental budget this week, appropriating $157 million to continue the county’s COVID-19 response, provide resources to administer federal funds, and other technical fixes.

Since 2020, King County has received approximately $2.1 billion in COVID relief from the federal government, as well as additional contributions from the State.

Included in the new appropriations are continued funding for Public Health – Seattle & King County’s pandemic response to maintain isolation and quarantine centers and extending Jail Health Services vaccination efforts.

“Over the past two years, we have been racing to react to the harm being caused by this pandemic. With our nation-leading progress in vaccination and declining case counts, we can now shift to a new phase of our response,” said Executive Constantine. “Building a King County that addresses the disparities revealed so starkly at the start of this pandemic begins with keeping our community safe, healthy, and supported as we make our way back to normal.”

This proposed ninth COVID-19 supplemental budget appropriates funds in three key areas:

    • Appropriates $55 million for the County’s COVID-19 response to continue key pandemic response operations, including costs to continue vaccination efforts and testing, and to maintain isolation and quarantine sites through June 2022.
    • Establishes an additional $85 million in spending authority for rental assistance to use new federal funds should they become available for residents behind in rent and utility payments due to COVID-19 hardships.
    • Provides resources to administer federal funds for multiple County agencies to support operations. The Office of Performance, Strategy, and Budget faces considerable compliance burdens and plans to divert a small amount of funds from some grants to help administer these grants, without additional appropriation.

The proposed supplemental budget was transmitted to the County Council on March 15 and is the ninth supplemental budget since the beginning of the pandemic. The most recent COVID-related budget was passed in July 2021.