New Kirkland City Councilmember Jon Pascal (right) takes his oath of office from Kirkland Municipal Court Judge Michael Lambo. KATHY CUMMINGS/Contributed photo

New Kirkland City Councilmember Jon Pascal (right) takes his oath of office from Kirkland Municipal Court Judge Michael Lambo. KATHY CUMMINGS/Contributed photo

New city councilmember brings extensive transportation experience

As Kirkland, the Eastside and the Puget Sound region continue to grow, transportation will remain one of the major issues. Kirkland’s newest city councilmember, Jon Pascal, is bringing his experience as a transportation engineer, a former transportation commissioner and a former planning commissioner to ease some of those growing pains.

“It has always been and will continue to be a big issue,” Pascal said, specifically citing the planned Sound Transit 3 improvements in Kirkland and transportation related to the development of Totem Lake and Kirkland Urban.

He has worked for Kirkland-based Transpo Group for 15 years, and he is now a part-owner. As part of his job, he works with public agencies, helping them with transportation projects. His work includes corridor studies and designing transit improvements.

Pascal was born and raised in Bellevue and received his bachelor’s degree in forestry and master’s degree in engineering (with emphasis in transportation and public planning) from the University of Washington.

“I’ve always loved living in the Pacific Northwest,” he said.

He moved to Finn Hill with his wife 15 years ago, and they relocated to Juanita with their two kids six months ago. His first office in local government was as a Kirkland transportation commissioner, a title he held from November 2001 through March 2010.

“(In 2001) I was looking at ways I could get involved … in any capacity of volunteering,” he said, adding that’s when he saw the transportation commission opening. “It was a great way to use my skill set.”

Following his stint as a transportation commissioner, he served on the Kirkland Planning Commission from April 2010 through March 2016. He also served on the board of directors of the Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance from November 2011 until he relocated.

Pascal said getting involved with the Finn Hill Neighborhood Alliance broadened his horizons in terms of determining all of the ways for the city to invest its money and resources.

“I cultivated an appreciation for the need to invest in open space and an appreciation for the city’s parks,” he said.

In addition to transportation, Pascal cited the preservation of open space and funding for public safety projects, such as a new fire station, as issues of importance to him both as a councilmember and a resident of Kirkland.

“I’m going to be thoughtful about how to (fund these projects) in an economical way,” he said, adding the pending shortfall from the loss of the Annexation Sales Tax Credit in 2021 would be important to address in preparing to fund transportation, open space and public safety projects.

“We’re always going to be having to find ways to be more efficient,” Pascal said, adding that the one-percent property tax cap also has a limiting effect on the city’s budget.

Pascal does plan to run for election to his position in November. (He was appointed to the seat by his fellow councilmembers in December 2016.)

“People are concerned I’m going to be a rubber stamper (because I was appointed) — that’s definitely not the case,” he said. “I need to take the time to earn the votes of the people.”


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 editor@kirklandreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kirklandreporter.com/submit-letter/. 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

Geographic dispersion of Washington State Patrol commissioned personnel who lost their jobs Oct. 18. (Washington State Patrol)
Rather than get vaccine, nearly 1,900 state workers lose jobs

Exactly how many people will be out of work for ignoring Gov.… Continue reading

King County Courthouse adjacent to City Hall Park (courtesy of City of Seattle)
County council votes to take dangerous park out of Seattle’s hands

City Hall Park, next to the courthouse in downtown Seattle, has had multiple reports of crime.

stock image
Health care workers call on state’s hospitals to help mitigate staffing crisis

Health care workers unions claim hospitals have the resources to fix the issue.

file photo
Eastside Fire & Rescue says their response times will not be affected by absence of unvaccinated employees

Spokesperson says about 13 employees have left the department at the moment.

File photo
Do you need to pay for your COVID hospital stay?

Washington state law requires hospitals to provide free care for certain income brackets.

Stock photo
State AG Ferguson leads effort supporting local journalism

Federal legislation offers tax credits to subscribers, businesses and news organizations

C-17 at Joint Base Lewis McChord airstrip (courtesy of United States Military)
King County councilmember proposes program to aid transition of Afghan interpreters who served the U.S. overseas

Program would provide job training and learning opportunities for Afghan interpreters and advisors.

Vaccinations taking place. File photo
Inslee: No ‘massive disruptions’ as worker vax rates hit 90%

A surge in vaccinations has eased concern about service slowdowns ahead of a Monday deadline.

King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert (file photo)
Lambert removed from King County Council leadership roles

Lambert received backlash after her campaign used flyers that depicted her opponent as a puppet.

Most Read