Look at all these bikes! And not a helmet in sight.
Look at all these bikes! And not a helmet in sight. Chetanya Robinson

King County Not Aligned with FORMER King Inslee: So we all know that King Inslee became Governor Inslee yesterday when, whilst riding a bald eagle, he announced he will restore face freedom in Washington on March 21 (if you didn’t know, read about it from your friend, Rich Smith). Inslee may have appeased the anti-maskers, but King County health officials aren’t ready to drop the indoor mask mandate locally just yet.

A spokesperson from Public Health - Seattle & King County told KING 5 this:

"King County will continue to evaluate the appropriate time to lift the local indoor mask order by considering the number and severity of COVID-19 infections, COVID-19 hospitalizations, and deaths, as well as the ability for hospitals and the healthcare system to manage patient loads.”

The spokesperson said that if cases and hospitalizations continue to fall and our hospitals recover and stabilize “it is reasonable that we will be at a place to lift the local indoor mask mandate, but we are not there yet.”

Helmet Shmelmet: Thursday, the King County Board of Health voted to repeal its decades-old mandatory helmet law for bicycle riders. The board was clear that helmets save lives, but the law itself does not: Data shows that overall minimum enforcement disproportionately targets people of color and people experiencing homelessness. The hope is that when this repeal takes effect in 30 days, you'll still see bikers taking necessary safety precautions, but cops won't harass bikers if they don't. Cool stuff!

Sawant on the case: Councilmember Kshama Sawant will introduce legislation in this morning's Sustainability and Renters' Rights committee to extend the eviction moratorium until the end of the civil emergency. Her office got the draft legislation back from the City Attorney's Office yesterday morning and sent it off to Council President Debora Juarez, asking that the bill be introduced and voted on in the City Council meeting Tuesday Feb. 22. It's a tight turnaround, but Sawant's on a tight timeline. The moratorium ends on the 28th. I'll tell you more this afternoon, so check back in!

The city will sweep more encampments: The city displacing the unhoused is hardly newsworthy. It happens nearly every day. But just so you don't forget, here's what happened this week. On Wednesday, the city swept Cascade Playground and removed an "obstruction" at Alaskan Way & Marion Street. On Thursday, the city swept Seven Hills Park. Today, the city will sweep Froula Park and remove obstructions at Occidental Park and 4th from Columbia to Cherry.

Worst neighbors award: The housed are terrorizing their unhoused neighbors, who don't have anywhere to go in this egregiously expensive hellhole. To ward off RVs, KOMO reported that businesses and residents are taking a page out of Councilmember Sara Nelson's book and putting out illegal ecoblocks. Patiently waiting for the day I see a "In this house we believe..." sign on an ecoblock.

Homeowners are loaded, unsurprisingly: The FYI Guy at The Seattle Times blessed us with this interesting tidbit this morning: The median net worth of Seattle-area homeowners was almost $1 million in 2021.

The median net worth of homeowners here jumped by more than $160,000 from 2019 to 2021, according to Acxiom, a Conway, Arkansas-based database marketing company that uses data to predict household net worth. In 2021, the median net worth for households that own their home in the Seattle metro area hit an estimated $987,000.

Which reminds me: As someone who will more than likely never own a home (pity me, please, I love attention), I thought I'd share this Seattle Channel segment for those mourning the death of the middle housing bill.

Boycott Walgreens: According to Citizens for Ethics, Walgreens donations to campaigns for 11 members of the Republican Sedition Caucus even though the company pledged that it would no longer contribute to members of Congress associated with the January 6 insurrection. So now Twitter wants you to boycott Walgreens.

An upsetting poll: After a few weeks reprieve from the blog's usual pro-shitty-weather campaign, the Seattle Weather Blog posted this poll, engaging in both-sidesism. I was shocked to find the results strongly favored snowfall next week. While it is unclear if the weather gods will honor this vote, those of us with seasonal depression and poor circulation hear the community's apathy loud and clear.

Kinda related thing I think about a lot: Remember that time David Kroman (before achieving his apparent long-held dream to work at a big daily paper) wrote a piece on polling for the mayoral race and everyone on Twitter thought the data he used was wrong/biased/bad? And then the piece, which had Harrell winning, ended up being right? I think about that all the time.

Back to the weather: If you care about the weather today, and not me just stirring the pot with the blogs, here's a forecast for you! Today, expect clouds and temperatures in the upper 40s. Going into the weekend, the weather app on my phone says there's a 30% chance of rain on Saturday and a 60% chance of rain Sunday. My broadcast meteorology class is paying off. Big thanks to Shannon at KOMO.