Safety in peril?

More than 50 people from the Valley's unincorporated areas attended a meeting held Monday evening, June 23, at the Fall City Fire Station, to address safety issues with King County Sheriff Sue Rahr.

Clarification - In the story "Safety in peril?" in the Valley Record's June 25 edition, Fall City resident Richard Werlein stated that unincorporated residents are at a disadvantage competing for attention from the county for limited resources. His published comments, however, were not meant to express frustration at living in an unincorporated area.

  • Thursday, October 2, 2008 12:11pm
  • News

More than 50 people from the Valley’s unincorporated areas attended a meeting held Monday evening, June 23, at the Fall City Fire Station, to address safety issues with King County Sheriff Sue Rahr.

A large number of public safety officers and services will be cut as a result of a $2.5 million budget shortfall for the King County Sheriff’s Office this year. Next year, Rahr will have to cut an additional $7.5 million in services. The unincorporated areas of King County will experience the largest decrease in services and officers on patrol.

“The frustration here is being unincorporated,” said Richard Werlein of Fall City. “Being rural is like being drowned out.”

Other attendees expressed similar concerns: “Anyone who has lived (in an unincorporated area) has learned that we kind of need to take care of ourselves,” said Kathy Brasch of Carnation.

Rahr sympathized with the community, but maintained that the reality of the budget situation is that there is more money going out of the county than coming in.

“It’s kind of a math problem,” she said. “We don’t have any fat to cut.”

The community forum meetings are a way for Rahr to gather citizen input. She will use these comments to prioritize the services that are most important to the community. Her completed budget will be sent to the Executive Budget Office on July 7. The Executive Budget Office will re-priorities services as it sees fit and then submit its own version to the county council in mid-October.

“From September through October, council needs to hear from King County citizens,” said Rahr. She encourages meeting participants to contact council members and join forces through e-mail networks.

In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

More in News

King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn
King County Councilmember Dunn will challenge Rep. Kim Schrier for U.S. Congress seat

The current County Councilmember would be following in his late mother’s footsteps

Garbage at the Cedar Hills Regional Landfill in Maple Valley. FILE PHOTO
King County and Port of Seattle to collaborate on waste-to-fuel study

The study is aimed at identifying logistics of developing aviation fuel out of municipal garbage.

File photo. Snoqualmie City Clerk Jodi Warren swears in re-elected councilmembers Katherine Ross and Sean Sundwall in 2020 city council meeting.
Snoqualmie City Council looks to appoint new member

The Snoqualmie City Council will have a vacant position to fill beginning… Continue reading

James Aquirre (middle left) being sworn in by Police Chief Perry Phipps (middle right) at a city council meeting on Aug. 9, 2021. File photo by Conor Wilson/Valley Record.
Investigators secure video evidence in Snoqualmie officer-involved shooting

Investigators with the King County Independent Force Investigation Team (IFIT) said they… Continue reading

file photo
Department of Health announces QR code verification program to prove vaccination status

WA Verify is intended to make vaccine verification simpler and more efficient.

Patti Cole-Trindall
King County Executive appoints Patti Cole-Tindall as interim sheriff

Cole-Tindall has a background in the sheriff’s office and county government.

King County Councilmember-elect Sarah Perry and a celebration photo, courtesy of her campaign manager Robby Paige.
Sarah Perry pushes 20-year incumbent out of King County Council District 3 position

By Hannah Saunders, For Sound Publishing Following her first campaign for a… Continue reading

Tony Persson, general manager of the North Bend Ace Hardware. Photo by Conor Wilson/Valley Record.
Lack of transit, housing crisis and pandemic fuel local labor shortage

There are nearly 3,000 unfilled positions in the Snoqualmie Valley.

Photo of Boalch Avenue in North Bend, part of the Meadowbrook neighborhood. Courtesy of the City of North Bend
North Bend City Council delays vote on joining Meadowbrook ULID

For years, private property owners have tried to extend public sewer system into neighborhood.

Most Read