Learn easy eco tips at Earth Day celebration

March 26, 2011

NEW — 8 a.m. March 26, 2011

King County is emphasizing easy ways to go “green” during the annual Earth Day Expo scheduled for April 22.

Join King County Executive Dow Constantine, EcoConsumer Tom Watson, environmental mascot Bert the Salmon and area school children to celebrate the spirit of everyday “green” living at Westlake Plaza in downtown Seattle.

Find tools, resources and discounts to make easy environmental choices. The free event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Visitors to the county’s booth — “It’s Easy Being Green – Let King County Show You How” — can learn simple ways to recycle, “green” up vehicles, volunteer for earth-friendly activities, reduce carbon footprints and make homes and gardens more earth-friendly.

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State extends studded tire deadline to April 7

March 25, 2011

NEW — 4 p.m. March 25, 2011

Motorists can keep studded tires on vehicles until April 7, because the state Department of Transportation has extended the deadline to remove the winter-weather gear.

The agency extended the studded tire deadline because forecasts call for possible winter driving conditions across the mountain passes and higher-elevation areas. However, if motorists fail to meet the April deadline, they could be cited by law enforcement officers.

“While we’ve extended the deadline, we’re asking drivers who live in lower elevations to remove their studded tires before April 7,” Chris Christopher, DOT director of maintenance operations, said in a release.

State law allows motorists use studded tires from Nov. 1 until March 31, unless the state changes the deadline.

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Issaquah baseball team edges Eastlake

March 25, 2011

NEW — 3 p.m. March 25, 2011

The Issaquah High School baseball team earned its first victory of the season Thursday when the Eagles edged visiting Eastlake 3-2 in a 4A KingCo Conferencee contest.

Issaquah pitcher Andrew Kemmerer held Eastlake to three hits over 6.1 innings and struck out four to earn his first varsity win. Cole Westover, who relieved Kemmerer in the seventh inning, earned his first varsity save.

Kemmerer also drove in a run as Issaquah snapped a four-game losing streak.

In other action, Redmond topped Skyline 5-3. Nate Litka had two hits and drove in two runs for Skyline.

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Cody Baker, football standout, to appear on national TV

March 25, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. March 25, 2011

The nationally-syndicated “Sports Stars of Tomorrow”  will feature Issaquah area youth football standout defensive end Cody Baker at 4 p.m. Saturday on KIRO-TV in its program about the Eastbay Youth All-American Bowl from January at the Alamodome in San Antonio.

Baker’s fumble return for a touchdown will be part of the featured segment on the eighth-grade, unlimited weight limit game.

“Sports Stars of Tomorrow” is hosted by legendary broadcaster Pat Summerall and features the brightest young stars in sports and is the only high-school sports program in national syndication. Started in 2005, “Sports Stars of Tomorrow” airs in over 90 percent of home in the United States and has featured such future stars as LeBron James, Sam Bradford and John Wall, as well as U.S. Army All-Americans Chris Wells, Tim Tebow and Matt Barkley.

“Sports Stars of Tomorrow” will portray the exciting All-American Bowl week experience of the Eastbay Youth Bowl and Combine athletes. It shows viewers the Eastbay Youth Bowl experience through the athletes from eighth-grade, unlimited weight-limit game.

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Lights go dark Saturday night for Earth Hour

March 25, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. March 25, 2011

Earth Hour — billed as the largest climate awareness event in history — reaches Issaquah and King County on Saturday night, as nonessential lights go dark.

“Turning off the lights for one hour is a positive gesture to call attention to the relationship between energy use and climate change,” County Executive Dow Constantine said in a release. “The real challenge is translating this gesture into earth-friendly actions we can take at all hours of every day.”

The city and county plan to join hundreds of millions of people and tens of thousands of organizations in the event. Earth Hour is scheduled for 8:30-9:30 p.m.

Constantine has signed a proclamation in support of Earth Hour 2011, a global event spearheaded by the World Wildlife Fund.

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Remember Issaquah zoo’s beloved cougar Saturday

March 25, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. March 25, 2011

Join other zoogoers to remember the cougar Nashi, the beloved and iconic Cougar Mountain Zoo denizen, at a Saturday celebration.

Nashi died at age 17 late last month. The celebration starts at 2 p.m. at the zoo, 19525 S.E. 54th St. The zoo plans to open the stage for zoogoers and zookeepers to talk about Nashi.

The orphaned cougar cub arrived at the nonprofit zoo from Minnesota woods more 17 years ago.

The other cougar at the zoo, Merlin, died in 2008, and General Curator Robyn Barfoot is raising money to refurbish the cougar habitat and acquire cubs for the exhibit.

The zoo is seeking donations to cover the expected $10,000 cost. Zoogoers can donate at the zoo website.

Issaquah preserves Tiger Mountain forest in historic milestone

March 24, 2011

Park Pointe protection occurs after yearslong effort to stop proposed construction

NEW — 6:45 p.m. March 24, 2011

The long-running saga to preserve Park Pointe — a slice of Tiger Mountain forest near Issaquah High School — ended Thursday afternoon, after more than a decade of public and behind-the-scenes negotiations to halt construction on hundreds of houses proposed for the land.

The historic conservation effort is part of a complicated transfer of development rights. Under the agreement, city leaders steered construction from Park Pointe to the Issaquah Highlands instead, and, as a result, preserved more than 140 acres in the process.

City planners and officials shepherded the transfer-of-development-rights agreement through the arduous process after Mayor Ava Frisinger outlined the landmark opportunity to preserve Park Pointe in late 2008.

In the years since, city leaders and other partners continued to pursue the project until the recession scuttled the developer pushing for the project.

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Tuberculosis remains a health concern in King County

March 24, 2011

NEW — 3 p.m. March 24, 2011

Public Health – Seattle & King County released new information about tuberculosis in King County on Thursday as part of World TB Day.

The health agency reported 116 active, or infectious, TB cases last year — a decrease from 130 cases in 2009. Officials said six of the cases last year resulted from the recently discovered PCR0001 strain.

The strain appears more likely to infect other people and cause active TB more than common strains.

The strain has caused 76 cases in local homeless people since 2002, and is starting to reach the broader community. Of the six PCR0001 cases from last year, three came from outside of the homeless population.

“We aren’t immune in King County from the global epidemic or the changing nature of the disease itself,” Dr. David Fleming, director and health officer for Public Health – Seattle & King County, said in a release. “The wider spread of what appears to be a more potent strain is concerning, and it’s an important example of why we can’t afford to relax our efforts in controlling TB.”

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Issaquah legislator backs corporate income tax

March 24, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. March 24, 2011

State Rep. Glenn Anderson seeks to scrap the unpopular business-and-occupation tax and levy a flat-rate corporate income tax instead.

Besides calling for a 7 percent corporate income tax on revenues after expenses, the legislation also proposes eliminating all B&O tax exemptions and prohibiting a personal income tax.

In introducing the bill and constitutional amendment, the Fall City Republican said the idea is based on the same premise as a recent proposal from the national deficit-reduction commission to simplify the federal tax code.

In Olympia, legislators face pressure to close tax “loopholes” to help patch a $5.1 billion hole in the 2011-13 state budget.

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Clubs offer chance to donate to Japan, get fit at same time

March 24, 2011

NEW — 8 a.m. March 24, 2011

People interested in donating to disaster relief efforts in Japan can offer aid and get fit.

Donate $45 to the American Red Cross, and receive a free personal-training session at Columbia Fitness-Sammamish or Columbia Athletic Clubs-Pine Lake on the Sammamish Plateau.

Donations should be made in the form of a check made out to the American Red Cross; 100 percent of the funds raised go directly to disaster relief.

The fundraiser runs through March 31 at Columbia Fitness-Sammamish, 22840 N.E. Eighth St., No. 105. Columbia Athletic Clubs-Pine Lake, 2930 228th Ave. S.E., is holding the fundraiser from April 1-15.

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