State loosens restrictions for small developments

January 8, 2013

The state Department of Ecology recently changed development rules to give local governments, including Issaquah and King County, more flexibility for small construction projects.

The rule change to the State Environmental Policy Act allows local governments more leeway to exempt minor construction projects from review under the law, such as small-scale residential housing developments, as well as certain agricultural, commercial office and school buildings.

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TalkingRain’s Sparkling ICE earns beverage honor

January 8, 2013

Preston-based TalkingRain received a national beverage honor for Sparkling ICE, a zero-calorie beverage.

Sparkling ICE recently earned the title of Best Enhanced Water at the 10th Annual BevNET Live Winter Conference in Santa Monica, Calif.

BevNET is the leading beverage-oriented media company and a respected authority on the beverage industry. The awards serve as a benchmark for the developing beverage landscape.

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Tougher dig law goes into effect with intent to reduce damage

January 3, 2013

NEW — 8 a.m. Jan. 3, 2013

Changes to the state call-before-you-dig law went into effect Tuesday, and the updated rules include stiffer penalties, mandatory damage reporting and clearer procedures — even for deep digging in a garden or yard.

The law affects all excavators, including contractors, homeowners and utilities. State lawmakers passed the law in 2011 at the request of the state Utilities and Transportation Commission. Officials said the switch is intended to improve communication and decrease damage to underground pipelines and utilities.

Under the law, excavators and utilities must report to the Utilities and Transportation Commission any damage to underground facilities within 45 days. Under the previous law, excavators only had to report damage to regulated natural gas and hazardous liquid facilities.

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Jones Soda Co. bottles Issaquah High School purple, gold beverages

January 1, 2013

The Jones Soda bottles in Issaquah High School flavors of grape and pineapple cream feature pictures of Issaquah students at a school assembly and cheering for their football team. By Greg Farrar

Stores will soon introduce an innovative tandem of new Jones Sodas, featuring pictures and ideals furnished by nearby Issaquah High School and Eagles event coordinator Tim Baynes.

Baynes has been working in unison with Eric Chastain, vice president of operations with Jones Soda Co.’s Seattle headquarters. The tiny inscription on the back of the Grape Soda bottle reads:

“Issaquah High School is located at the foot of the beautiful Cascade Mountain range in the heart of Issaquah. We pride ourselves in our ability to serve and support one another and the world around us. Whether that is building wells in Ethiopia and Nepal or joining the fight against cancer, we impact our world when we work together.

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Issaquah fire station, hospital earn honors for energy efficiency

January 1, 2013

Issaquah is a hub for energy efficiency, after a fire station and a hospital in the city earned top honors in the same national competition for engineering and technology.

Eastside Fire & Rescue Station 72 and Swedish/Issaquah garnered first-place ASHRAE Technology Awards — a top recognition for innovative building design.

EFR Station 72 opened in 2011 as the most energy-efficient fire station on the planet. Swedish/Issaquah opened in July 2011, after planners spent years developing a “practical ‘green’” facility to dramatically reduce energy consumption.

ASHRAE — or the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers — plans to bestow the awards on honorees in January at a conference in Dallas. The organization announced the recipients Nov. 9.

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State law requires carbon monoxide detectors in 2013

January 1, 2013

Starting Jan. 1, state law required 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.

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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Liquor sales rebound in months after privatization

January 1, 2013

Consumers stockpiled spirits in May, leading to a June sales slump, but in the months since private liquor sales started, spirit sales rebounded, state revenue officials reported Dec. 4.

The state Department of Revenue said spirit sales by volume increased 2.9 percent between June and September from the same period a year earlier.

Retailers sold almost 13.6 million liters of spirits from June through September, compared to the 13.2 million liters sold at state-run liquor stores during the same period a year earlier.

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Time runs out for end-of-year donations to nonprofit organizations

December 31, 2012

NEW — 2 p.m. Dec. 31, 2012

The need is up nonprofit organizations, but as donors start to make out checks for year-end donations, local organizations sometimes struggle to stand out in a field crowded with requests for giving.

In King County, end-of-year charitable giving to nonprofit organizations is on the to-do list for many donors. The average person makes 24 percent of annual donations between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve, according to research from the Center on Philanthropy.

Issaquah and the Puget Sound region maintain a long-held reputation for generosity to charitable causes. The key for nonprofit organizations to successfully solicit donations, local leaders said, is to highlight successes.

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Options abound to recycle old Christmas trees

December 31, 2012

NEW — 2 p.m. Dec. 31, 2012

Christmas is history, and residents ready to pitch old Christmas trees can do so in different ways.

Chip trees — minus tinsel and other decorations — into landscaping material or ground finer into a composting soil amendment.

Customers tired of evergreens dropping brown needles can set out trees for yard waste collection on regular yard waste collection days.

Haulers do not collect trees decked in flocking or decorations. Contact garbage haulers for details; CleanScapes and Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — serve Issaquah.

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TalkingRain earns national beverage honor

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

Preston-based TalkingRain earned a national beverage honor for Sparkling ICE, a zero-calorie beverage.

Sparkling ICE recently earned the title of Best Enhanced Water at the 10th Annual BevNET Live Winter Conference in Santa Monica, Calif.

BevNET is the leading beverage-oriented media company and a respected authority on the beverage industry. The awards serve as a benchmark for the developing beverage landscape.

Read more

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