Snoqualmie requires vaccine for city employees

The City of Snoqualmie announced that it will require all staff and volunteers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine by Oct. 18 as a condition of employment.

The requirement came Aug. 24 in the form of a mandate from Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson. It extends to all departments and anyone who volunteers with the city.

Employees can request an exemption to the vaccine on religious or medical grounds. Those who receive an exemption will be required to receive twice-weekly COVID testing.

“[Vaccines] will provide the best available protection for city employees, your families and those in the community against COVID-19 and the contagious Delta variant,” Larson wrote in an email to city staff.

Those who still need a vaccination will need to receive their second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine by Oct. 3 to comply with the city’s mandate. The city said two employees have been hospitalized with COVID-19 symptoms in recent months.

The mayor’s announcement followed a statewide mandate, from Gov. Jay Inslee, that required all state employees and those working in public schools receive the vaccine as a condition of employment. It also came as COVID-19 case rates and hospitalizations in the valley are reaching levels not seen since this winter.

Danna McCall, a spokesperson for the City of North Bend, said the city does not have a vaccination requirement for its staff but is monitoring the situation.