Liberty football battle-tested, ready for playoffs

November 4, 2010

NEW — 10:15 a.m. Nov. 4, 2010

When Liberty High School football coach Steve Valach gathered his players to talk about the playoffs, he decided to make a reference to the NBA.

He talked about how teams will sometimes sign a player to a 10-day contract. If that player performs at a high level, there is a chance he will get another contract.

He told them to forget about the past and look ahead to the games to come.

“Monday, you signed a five-day contract and, Friday night, if things go well, you get an opportunity to reup it,” Valach told his team. “Let’s make the most of each day, and then hope we have a chance to sign that contract to play for another week.”

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Costco-backed liquor privatization initiative defeated

November 4, 2010

NEW — 8 a.m. Nov. 4, 2010

Costco Wholesale has battled for years to loosen state liquor regulations — and voters have rejected the latest effort by the Issaquah-based company to change Washington’s state-run liquor system.

Initiative 1100, a liquor privatization measure on the Nov. 2 ballot, trailed statewide by about 80,000 votes of about 1.6 million cast statewide late Wednesday. In King County, the measure had a slight lead late Wednesday, by about 2,500 votes out of 418,000 cast.

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Issaquah Highlands foodie fundraiser benefits food pantry

November 4, 2010

NEW — 8 a.m. Nov. 4, 2010

Help the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank at a night of posh noshing Saturday.

Issaquah Highlands residents host Corks & Forks, a holiday cocktail reception to benefit the food bank, at 7 p.m. Saturday. R.S.V.P. to danielsondd@yahoo.com and bring a dessert or a bottle of wine to the event to share.

The foodie fundraiser pulled in almost 600 pounds of food and $2,000 for the food pantry last November. During the inaugural fundraiser in 2008, attendees raised $1,200 and donated more than 300 pounds of food to stock food bank shelves.

Issaquah businesses run by women vie for honors

November 4, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 4, 2010

Issaquah businesses run by women are finalists for Stevie Awards for Women in Business, an international competition honoring women executives, business owners and the companies they run.

Issaquah-based companies Artitudes Design and Career Woman are finalists for a total of five awards.

Artitudes Design is a woman-owned graphic design firm that specializes in executive and senior leadership communications for high tech, retail and nonprofit groups through customized presentations, marketing and branding solutions.

Its employees volunteer at elementary schools in the Northshore, Sultan, Highline, Snoqualmie school districts as part of its Artitudes in Action: Art Docent Campaign.

The Stevie award judges chose Artitudes Design as a finalist for two awards: Best Overall Company of the Year – Service Business – up to 100 employees, and Community Involvement Program of the Year, for its art docent program.

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Dino Rossi trails in U.S. Senate race as count continues

November 3, 2010

Dino Rossi, U.S. Senate candidate, kisses wife Terry as children (from left) Jake, Joseph, Juliauna and Jillian look on during a GOP celebration in Bellevue Tuesday. By Greg Farrar

State Senate races remain too close to call

UPDATED — 5:55 p.m. Nov. 3, 2010

Republican Dino Rossi, a Sammamish resident and former Issaquah state senator, trailed incumbent U.S. Sen. Patty Murray by about 24,800 votes Wednesday afternoon, though the number could shift in the days ahead as mail ballots reach elections offices statewide.

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King County voter turnout exceeds pre-election estimates

November 3, 2010

NEW — 5:55 p.m. Nov. 3, 2010

Ballots continue to arrive at King County Elections’ Tukwila headquarters, but the county has already beat pre-election turnout estimates.

The office predicted 68 percent turnout, but turnout — fueled by interest in a hot U.S. Senate race, plus statehouse races and a slew of ballot measures — has already surpassed 71 percent. The total includes about 57,000 ballots returned to ballot drop boxes on Election Day.

The elections headquarters has received most of the ballots postmarked by the Election Day deadline, totaling more than 762,000.

“It always makes us happy to see a high level of voter turnout,” Elections Director Sherril Huff said in a statement released Wednesday afternoon. “With over 145,000 ballots arriving in the mail today alone, this election tested our ability to deal with record volumes of mail and I’m very pleased to say that we successfully got the job done.”

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Issaquah volleyball team heads to state

November 3, 2010

NEW — 10:30 a.m. Nov. 3, 2010

The Issaquah High School volleyball team defeated Inglemoor 3-0 Tuesday in the semifinals of the 4A KingCo Conference tournament and qualified to the upcoming state tournament.

Issaquah, which was the league’s regular-season champion, won the games 25-21, 25-17, 25-12. Rachel Roeder led the Eagles with a dominating effort as she had 17 kills, three blocks, 10 digs and three aces. She was complemented by the efforts of Sarah Hanna, Alexa Batiquin, Riley Sorenson and Jenna Pang. Hanna had 13 kills, Batiquin had 12 digs and four aces, Sorenson had 34 assists and 10 digs, and Pang had three blocks.

The Eagles play Newport in the tournament title match at 3 p.m. at Bothell High School. Newport, which finished second in the regular season standings, defeated Woodinville 3-1 in the semifinals. By winning their semifinal matches, both Issaquah and Newport qualified for the state tournament Nov. 11-12 at the Toyota Center in Kennewick.

Top-ranked Skyline wins 4A KingCo girls soccer title with 3-1 victory over Eastlake

November 3, 2010

NEW — 10:30 a.m. Nov. 3, 2010

Michelle Bretl sang the national anthem before the 4A KingCo Conference girls soccer championship and before she launched into the rendition her nerves were present.

But come game time, Bretl was all confidence, helping her unbeaten team keep singing along.

Bretl booted in a long and chancy go-ahead goal early in the second half as top-ranked Skyline survived ninth-ranked Eastlake 3-1 in Tuesday night’s KingCo 4A title match at Skyline High School.

The Spartans (16-0) host a first-round Class 4A state playoff game on either Nov. 9 or 10 against the No. 6 seed from the West Central/Southwest district.

“When I shot it, I just sort had the idea of the (KingCo) trophy in my mind, and everything we’ve been working for in this game,” said Bretl. “I just had to do it. The ball had to go into the net, and I was just the one to get it done.

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County budget team warns of deep cuts after sales tax defeat

November 3, 2010

NEW — 10 a.m. Nov. 3, 2010

King County budget leaders said the defeat of a proposed sales tax hike to pay for criminal justice programs has left the county with few options to close a budget gap.

County Councilwoman Julia Patterson, chairwoman of the Budget Leadership Team, and Councilman Larry Gossett, another budget team member, decried the defeat in a statement released Wednesday morning. Voters rejected the proposal by a sizable margin in the Tuesday election.

“The idea of putting this measure on the ballot was to give the voters of King County a voice in the tough decisions that will be taking place over the next two weeks as we complete the 2011 county budget,” the statement read. “The voters have been clear in their choice and we are prepared to make the necessary cuts to public safety to balance this budget.”

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King County could break election record

November 2, 2010

NEW — 9:40 p.m. Nov. 2, 2010

King County Elections included results from 373,941 ballots in the initial tally released Tuesday night, and the county could set a record for mail voting in the days head.

Contests to represent Issaquah in the Legislature produced some surprises and close races in the initial results.

The office received more than 120,000 ballots in the mail Tuesday. The next round of results is due to be released at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

King County has estimated a total election return of about 720,000 ballots — or 68 percent of voters. The tally released Wednesday should reflect about 45,000 additional ballots.

The return could set a record. The elections office received 650,000 ballots during the 2008 presidential election, the current record holder.

The office expects to receive a greater amount of mail Wednesday, because many voters waited until Election Day to mark and return ballots.

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