Government employees to work from home until 2021

KING, PIERCE, SNOHOMISH counties — King, Pierce and Snohomish counties are so tightly intertwined economically and socially that neither one can effectively fight Covid alone.

“We’re seeing an uptick in cases and we will be dealing with Covid for the foreseeable future,” said Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers.

The three counties have announced that the government employees who can will work for home until January 2021.

“There’s a free flow of people throughout the region so ... because what happens in one county effects the other from a health standup and a business standpoint.”

The work from home plan includes the cities of Everett, Kenmore, Redmond, Shoreline, Seattle and Tacoma, and the ports of Everett and Seattle.

“When everybody’s sending out a different message or has different rules, it becomes extremely confusing to the public -- they get frustrated. So, we thought we’re one community, we all have the same issue, so let’s go together with one consistent approach to this.”

The fact that so many school districts are going with online learning from home in the fall played a big role in the decision.

“Workers, employees need to know what arrangements they’re going to have to make. A lot of them do have school-age children at home.”

Snohomish County and the others have been able to mostly maintain their services.

“I don’t see a lot of downsides right now except that we don’t have that face to face public interaction that is important many times,” Somers said.