Healthy Communities and Parks Program Funds projects that reduce disparities in and improve the health and well-being of underserved communities by increasing access to recreation, parks, and open space.
Open Space – River Corridors Funds projects that restore habitats and enhance recreation in river corridors.
Parks Capital and Open Space Funds parks and trails initiatives to protect lands for public space and improve access to the outdoors
Aquatic Facilities Funds focus on improving current and building new aquatic facilities to expand access across King County.
Twelve positions are currently open across three advisory committees:
Healthy Communities and Parks
Open Space – River Corridors
Parks Capital and Open Space + Aquatic Facilities*
City/Park District Positions – Employed or elected officials from cities or parks districts within King Co. (All nine council districts are represented in each committee)
One position: King Co. Council District 8
Four positions: King Co. Council Districts 1, 6, 7, 9
One position: King Co. Council District 6
Community Organization Positions
Two positions that will also serve on the Open Space Equity Cabinet: Members representing organizations with a strong history of community involvement and/or championing public access to parks and recreation programs for underserved areas of King County.
Two positions: Members of nonprofits, community organizations, districts (park, flood, conservation, diking), and salmon recovery forums with a strong knowledge and experience with floodplains by design.
Two positions: Elected or employed officials of school districts actively engaged in aquatics recreation and/or implementation of the recommendations in the State of Play Report.
*One committee advises on two distinct grant programs: Parks Capital and Open Spaces AND Aquatic Facilities grants
Role of Advisory Committee Members
The Levy Grant Advisory Committees are a key part of our participatory grantmaking process, as they provide a way for stakeholders and on-the-ground experts to direct the investment of Parks investments within the community. The primary role of a committee member is the evaluation of individual applications, along with engaging in collaborative discussion within the committee to develop a list of recommended projects for funding.
We value stakeholders’ time, and the diverse perspectives committee members bring to the process. Meetings are held virtually, time commitment is minimal outside of the grant review period (estimated at 15-30 hours per year), and community members may be eligible for a stipend for serving on a Parks Advisory Committee.
We ask that committee members do their best to commit to service on the committee through 2025, the duration of the current Parks Levy.
September – October 2022: Interest forms will be reviewed by King County Parks staff, prior to approval by the King County Executive
October 2022: Recommended new committee members shared with King County Council for review
November 2022: New committee members notified; begin orientation
February – April 2023: Begin first review of grant applications
Future vacancies will be posted on this page and those interested are encouraged to apply on a rolling basis as positions become available.
Are there particular representation, skills, or experiences that are necessary or preferred on the committees? What attributes make a good committee member?
Each committee has specific roles designated for individuals affiliated with cities, nonprofits and/or districts which need to be filled as defined by the Parks Levy, there are no “at large” community member positions. An ideal committee member has a mixture of lived and professional experience that provides unique perspective. Committee members need to be able to manage their implicit biases during the evaluation process and make recommendations to support the Division’s Equity and Social Justice goals. We encourage BIPOC, immigrant, LGBTQ+, disabled, low-income, and other communities that have historically experienced underinvestment and underrepresentation to apply. An understanding of power dynamics between marginalized communities and government, and/or funders and grantees, is especially helpful.
Can I serve on a committee if my organization has been awarded or would like to apply for a grant from the program? How are conflicts of interest handled?
Yes! We encourage members from stakeholder organizations who have received funding or anticipate applying in the future to serve on the committee as it can provide valuable insight into the experience of project sponsors. During the application review process, any committee member whose organization is engaged in or financially invested in of a project will be recused from the evaluation and discussion of that specific project. Committee members must also not bid on or otherwise benefit personally from projects they reviewed or scored while serving on the committee. County staff will assist in administering the conflict of interest policy and recusing committee members with conflicts.
What training opportunities will be provided?
All committee members will receive detailed onboarding into the duties and responsibilities of their role. Since meetings will primarily be held over Zoom, technical training is available on videoconferencing technology as needed. An in-depth training on the Grant Management System used to review and evaluate projects is provided, as well as robust technical assistance by County staff. Finally, all committee members will receive training on bias awareness and King County’s Equity and Social Justice priorities, as well as how to incorporate these into the grantmaking process.
What is the Open Space Equity Cabinet and how does it relate to the Parks Levy Grant advisory committees?
The Open Space Equity Cabinet is our region’s “voice” on the issue of open space equity. As an integral part of the Land Conservation Initiative, the Cabinet develops recommendations on how to further refine King County Code, plans, and funding sources to provide more equitable access to parks and open space. The Healthy Communities and Parks Fund was a result of the Cabinet’s recommendation to build capacity of community organizations to lead investments in our open space infrastructure.
As a result, we are seeking committee members who will both guide investments through the Healthy Communities and Parks Fund AND ALSO advise on larger policy initiatives through membership on the Cabinet. For more information about the role and responsibilities of the Cabinet, please contact Heather Ramsay Ahndan.