Local medical marijuana operations unaffected by DEA raids

November 16, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 16, 2011

Drug Enforcement Administration agents and local law enforcement officers raided more than a dozen medical marijuana operations in Western Washington on Tuesday, but the sweep did not affect collectives in Issaquah and Preston.

The operation targeted at least 14 medical marijuana operations in King, Pierce and Thurston counties. Overall, authorities arrested more than a dozen people.

Officials said the operations targeted in the raids failed to meet state guidelines or used the state medical marijuana law as cover to make illegal sales.

“Our job is to enforce federal criminal laws. In doing so, we always prioritize and focus our resources,” U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan said in a statement. “As we have previously stated, we will not prosecute truly ill people or their doctors who determine that marijuana is an appropriate medical treatment.”

Read more

City, neighbors dedicate Squak Mountain forest to Maureen McCarry

November 15, 2011

Former councilwoman led effort to protect Squak Mountain woods

Maureen McCarry (right), a former councilwoman and Forest Rim resident, flashes a thumbs-up to city Parks Planner Margaret Macleod at the dedication ceremony for McCarry Woods on Nov. 12. By Warren Kagarise

The thicket — all gold and green beneath a November sky the same color as chalk — adjacent to the Forest Rim neighborhood on Squak Mountain shares the name of a person instrumental in protecting the land for future generations.

Read more

City Council hikes water rate 9 percent to offset conservation-related decline

November 15, 2011

Issaquah customers should start paying more for water soon, after city leaders increased rates to offset conservation-related declines in usage.

In a unanimous decision Nov. 7, City Council members OK’d a 9 percent increase in the municipal water rate. The average residential customer should pay about $3 more per month after the updated water rate goes into effect Dec. 1.

“What we end up paying and the revenues that the city brings in are due to reductions in revenue and usage,” Councilman Joshua Schaer said before the decision. “I find it interestingly perverse that the more we conserve, the more we have to pay.”

The council, although reluctant to increase the rate, said the increase is essential to shore up funding for the municipal water utility. The city provides water to more than 6,500 businesses and homes.

“This will keep our water fund — maybe not as healthy as it could be — but certainly from dipping below zero,” Schaer said.

Officials initially proposed a 10 percent rate increase to replace aging pump stations and water mains, address increased operating costs related to increased charges from Cascade Water Alliance and provide debt service coverage required in bond agreements. Council Utilities, Technology & Environment Committee members reduced the proposed increase to 9 percent.

Read more

Before giving thanks, give back at Issaquah Turkey Trot

November 15, 2011

Burn some calories before the feast at the Issaquah Turkey Trot, a Thanksgiving Day benefit for the Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank.

Issaquah Turkey Trot organizer and Issaquah resident Heather Matthews said the morning run is a chance for residents to benefit the community on the holiday.

The inaugural Issaquah Turkey Trot started last year after some early morning snowfall, days after a sudden snowstorm nailed the Puget Sound region.

Matthews, then eight months pregnant, did not expect runners to head out into the cold, although 320 people had signed up for the run in the days before Thanksgiving.

Read more

Join Issaquah Alps Trails Club to help clean, prepare Cougar Mountain

November 15, 2011

Cougar Mountain is due for a cleaning.

King County purchased 41 acres on Cougar Mountain almost a year ago, and to prepare the site for addition to a regional park, Issaquah Alps Trails Club members plan to clean up the land Nov. 19.

The effort is a rare cleanup event for the trails club. Members usually focus on trail maintenance projects.

“This property is really important and we figure it’s a good start,” said David Kappler, Issaquah Alps Trails Club president and a former Issaquah councilman. “We’ll build some more awareness of the actual potential for this property.”

Read more

Information kiosks go up along Mountains to Sound Greenway trails

November 15, 2011

This newly completed kiosk at the Tiger Mountain trailhead includes maps and a QR code that will direct smartphones to the website of the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust. By Greg Farrar

A new kiosk now in place at the Tiger Mountain trailhead can provide cellphone users with electronic information about the mountain trail, such as maps and how to spot local wildlife.

Amy Brockhaus, of the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust, said the kiosk was finished last week. Similar kiosks are going up at locations throughout the greenway at spots such as the Mount Si and Rattlesnake Mountain trailheads.

Brockhaus said one idea of the kiosks is to allow users of smart phones to take pictures of trail maps and use those maps later to navigate the surrounding area. A QR code in one corner of the kiosk directs web enabled phones to the Mountains to Sound Greenway website. The kiosks also contain what was described as a lot of site-specific information.

Read more

Eastridge Church plans traditional Thanksgiving turkey giveaway

November 15, 2011

Eastridge Pastor Steve Jamison (left) and Bert Urie, of the church’s board of elders, hand out items during last year’s Thanksgiving event. Contributed

Issaquah’s Eastridge Church will have its annual giveaway of 1,000 turkeys and groceries Nov. 19.

Heather Retzlaff, executive assistant at the church, said the large-scale holiday charity event would be even bigger than in the past.

“This year we’ve also added a few new elements — free haircuts from licensed stylists who attend Eastridge, coats for children and adults, and Bibles,” Retzlaff said in a press release.

The giveaway will take place while supplies last starting at 9 a.m. at the Eastridge churches in Issaquah and Seattle.

The Issaquah location is 24205 Issaquah-Fall City Road. The West Seattle Campus of Eastridge Church is at 4500 39th Ave. S.W.

Read more

Spreading cheer around the globe, one smile at a time

November 15, 2011

With the help of a University of Washington dental student, Issaquah dentist Theresa Cheng works on a Panamanian patient. contributed

Local dentist joins Dental Brigade to Panama

Before she left Panama in August, Issaquah dentist Theresa Cheng had proof positive that medical trips to remote areas do some long-lasting good.

For the most part, Cheng said the 500 patients she saw in the rural Darien Province of Panama had extreme dental problems. There were two exceptions, two patients who apparently had learned the benefits of brushing and flossing during previous visits from visiting physicians.

“That was a surprise,” Cheng said, adding she was shocked at how much the two stood out from other patients.

Read more

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert honors Issaquah veterans

November 15, 2011

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert (left) greets World War II veteran and University House Issaquah resident Eugene Klineburger on Nov. 10. By Greg Farrar

The day before the United States paused to honor veterans, attention focused on the greatest generation and the sacrifices members made to fight and win World War II.

The early Veterans Day observance in Issaquah included a visit from a congressman and a chance to share stories about the long-ago conflict.

Jack Yusen served aboard the USS Samuel B. Roberts amid World War II, until Japanese forces sunk the destroyer escort in the Battle of Leyte Gulf — the largest naval battle during World War II. Some sailors survived the attack only to bob in the shark-infested Philippine Sea until rescuers arrived days later.

“We had no water, no medicines, no food,” Yusen said Nov. 10. “If one of the guys got bit by a shark, we’d push him away, because the blood made other sharks come. It was horrible. I was 18 years old, but we survived.”

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert met Yusen and about 15 other veterans at University House Issaquah, a retirement facility, to pay tribute to veterans from World War II and other conflicts. In a brief speech, the congressman called on others to acknowledge veterans’ sacrifices and service. (The National World War II Museum estimates about 1,000 veterans of the conflict die each day.)

Read more

Veterans receive salute at Issaquah ceremony

November 15, 2011

A World War II Navy veteran, Paul Miller has been through his share of Veterans Day celebrations.

Issaquah High School Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps members present a 21-gun salute to close the Veterans Day celebration at the Issaquah Valley Senior Center on Nov. 11. See a slideshow of photos at www.issaquahpress.com. By Tom Corrigan

Not surprisingly, he still thinks those remembrances are important and worthwhile.

“We need to pay our respects and honor those who have served and … especially those who made that ultimate sacrifice,” he said following the 45-minute commemoration at the Issaquah Valley Senior Center on Veterans Day.

The ceremony ended with a 21-gun salute provided by the Issaquah High School Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps.

“Veterans do not take life for granted,” said veteran and Issaquah City Councilman Fred Butler, who presented the keynote talk during the event. “They know that duty and sacrifice are more than words.”

Butler said the country has a new breed of veterans in those returning from often multiple tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“Too many veterans with real skills cannot find jobs in this economy,” he said.

He urged those listening to get to know those new veterans and help and hire them if possible.

Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 3436, led by David Waggoner, presented the Veterans Day event. For his part, Waggoner’s talk highlighted an Issaquah vet he believes deserves more attention then she has gotten so far.

Read more

« Previous PageNext Page »