Community mourns former sports editor Bob Taylor

December 28, 2012

NEW — 3:05 p.m. Dec. 28, 2012

Robert L. “Bob” Taylor, former longtime sports editor of The Issaquah Press, died Christmas Eve morning, Dec. 24, 2012, at the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle. He was 63.

Bob Taylor

Taylor, of Renton, was diagnosed with cancer in 2006, and was battling that and leukemia at the time of his death. He wrote about his illness many times in The Press.

He married his wife, the former Pauline Namit, who he called his best friend, in 1976, and she was his main caregiver in his last years. He was very proud of his adult son, David, a University of Washington graduate. Family meant everything to him. He also loved his dog Katie.

Taylor was half Finnish and proud of his heritage. He was born Oct. 4, 1949, in Vancouver, Wash., to Hilda (Kopra) and Layton Taylor, and raised on a farm in Southwest Washington.

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Fire causes $30,000 in damage to Issaquah Highlands home

December 28, 2012

NEW — 11:20 a.m. Dec. 28, 2012

Firefighters responded to a house fire in the Issaquah Highlands just after 8 p.m. Thursday.

Eastside Fire & Rescue reached the empty home in the 1600 block of Northeast 24th Street at 8:22 p.m., five minutes after the call reached 911 dispatchers. Firefighters could see smoke and flames from the street, and worked to extinguish the fire in a second-floor bedroom and protect nearby residences.

Overall, eight units responded to the scene in the highlands neighborhood, and firefighters had the blaze under control by 8:43 p.m.

Firefighters estimated the damage at $30,000 overall — $20,000 for the structure and $10,000 for the contents damaged in the blaze. The fire did not cause any injuries.

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Best (Unseen) Photos of 2012 / Dec. 26, 2012

December 26, 2012

Police continue holiday DUI crackdown until New Year’s Day

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

Issaquah police officers plan to continue a national push to pull drunken drivers from local roads during the holiday season.

The agency is joining other police departments in King County, Washington and across the United States through Jan. 1 in Washington’s initial participation in a national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign.

Besides the Issaquah Police Department, the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign includes the nearby Bellevue, Newcastle, North Bend, Sammamish, Snoqualmie and Renton police departments, in addition to the Washington State Patrol.

The local effort is organized and supported through the King County Target Zero Task Force, a regional push to crack down on unsafe driving practices.

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Issaquah legislators receive key commitee assignments

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

Local lawmakers received or retained influential committee assignments — and the ability to shape state policy on education, transportation and other priorities — in the next legislative session.

Recent changes in how the state Senate operates changed prospective roles for local legislators. Though Democrats claim more members in the Senate, Republicans announced a plan in early December to instead put a bipartisan caucus in place to run the chamber.

With help from Sens. Rodney Tom, D-Medina, and Tim Sheldon, D-Potlach, Republicans received a 25-24 majority. Under the proposal, Tom is poised to serve as majority leader and oust Democrats’ chosen majority leader, Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle. (Until redistricting last year, Tom, a former Republican, represented some Issaquah neighborhoods.)

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Fireworks restrictions remain in effect for New Year’s Eve

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

The regulations for fireworks vary in the Issaquah area, so residents should determine local rules before deciding to blast into 2013.

In Issaquah, a citywide fireworks ban remains in effect New Year’s Eve. Residents in rural and unincorporated King County can discharge fireworks from 6 p.m. Dec. 31 until 1 a.m. Jan. 1.

Officials remind residents to set off only approved and legal  fireworks purchased from reliable state- and King County Fire Marshal  Division-licensed retailers. Remember to obey fireworks regulations and practice fireworks safety.

In King County, fireworks  sales for New Year’s Eve celebrations remain legal from noon Dec. 27 to 11 p.m. Dec. 31. Patrons must be at least 16 years old and present a form of photo identification in order to purchase fireworks.

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Prepare for Issaquah Community Center, pool closures

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

Prepare for closures at the Issaquah Community Center and the Julius Boehm Pool for the New Year’s holiday.

The community center is due to close for maintenance from Dec. 31 to Jan. 1. Then, the center reopens for regular hours Jan. 2.

Meanwhile, the pool is scheduled to close at 3:30 p.m. New Year’s Eve and reopen at 6:30 a.m. Jan. 2.

In addition to the community center and pool, officials plan to close City Hall from Dec. 31 to Jan. 1, and then reopen Jan. 2. Issaquah Municipal Court is open New Year’s Eve and then closed New Year’s Day.

Forbes ranks Sammamish as friendliest city

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

Sammamish is the friendlest town in the United States in a recent ranking by Forbes magazine.

Forbes joined Nextdoor.com — a San Francisco-based social network for neighborhoods — to assess 500 small metro areas with populations between 5,500 and 150,000. The assessors ranked cities based on the percentage of owner-occupied homes, crime rate, charitable giving and the percentage of college graduates.

Nextdoor.com then conducted qualitative surveys among members in the highest-rated towns to finalize the top 15.

Sammamish came out on top in the America’s Friendliest Towns list.

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State law requires carbon monoxide detectors in 2013

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

Starting Jan. 1, state law requires most existing apartments, condominiums and single-family residences to install carbon monoxide detectors.

Landlords must install detectors outside each separate sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of bedrooms and on each level.

Starting in 2011, state law required carbon monoxide detectors in all newly constructed single-family homes and multifamily residences.

The law does not require homeowners living in homes purchased prior to July 26, 2009, to install carbon monoxide detectors until they sell the home. The units typically cost between $25 and $50.

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King County executive reflects on accomplishments

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

King County Executive Dow Constantine reflected on the top 12 accomplishments of 2012, including same-sex marriage legalization and improvements in county agencies.

“Any list is going to be subjective, and not every story here was one that captured the public’s attention — but each held its own place in our agenda to create a sustainable government that works, and one that works for all the people,” he said in a statement. “My thanks to the work of all our departments and staff who helped make our successes possible.”

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