The Issaquah Press’ general election endorsements

October 30, 2012

See the editorial board’s recommendations for congressional and legislative candidates, and statewide ballot measures, in the Nov. 6 general election.

Read more

Editorial

October 30, 2012

Karen Porterfield for Congress

Issaquah Democrat Karen Porterfield is an excellent choice to represent the expansive 8th Congressional District.

In 2004, voters elected Republican Dave Reichert to succeed Republican Jennifer Dunn in Washington, D.C. Since then, Reichert has failed to distinguish himself in the U.S. House of Representatives and too often seems detached and unavailable from constituents at home. He does deserve credit for his work in Congress to expand the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.

Following redistricting last year, the 8th District covers more ground, stretching from Auburn to Issaquah to Wenatchee. The change in the district is a good time to change representation.

Read more

Editorial

October 30, 2012

Vote no Initiative 1185

Washington voters approved a two-thirds legislative majority for taxes in 1993, 1998, 2007 and most recently in 2010.

Proponents argue that the two-thirds majority measure on this year’s ballot, Initiative 1185, is again needed to keep state legislators in line. In fact, a two-thirds requirement gives the minority — in this case, a small group of state senators — the unfair advantage to shut down any proposed tax increase.

Read more

Editorial

October 23, 2012

Our endorsements for state representatives

Local voters face some clear choices in the legislative races on the Nov. 6 ballot.

Issaquah is divided between the 5th and 41st legislative districts. Redistricting has changed district boundaries, but most Issaquah neighborhoods remain inside the 5th District.

North Issaquah and neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish shifted into the 41st District. Cougar Mountain west of state Route 900 and areas north of Interstate 90 act as the dividing lines.

Read more

Press Editorial

October 16, 2012

Vote to approve same-sex marriage

Referendum 74 offers Washington voters a historic chance to expand civil rights to same-sex couples.

In February, after receiving crucial support from local lawmakers in the state House of Representatives and state Senate, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed landmark legislation to legalize same-sex marriage. Opponents petitioned to put the measure before voters on the November ballot.

Washington already affords rights to same-sex couples, but the existing law is incomplete. Marriage is a basic civil right.

In 2009, voters approved Referendum 71, or the state’s “everything-but-marriage” law, to expand domestic partnership rights. Both sides in the R-74 campaign realize marriage — both the institution and the word — is the key piece missing from existing state law.

Read more

Press Editorial

October 16, 2012

Vote to approve marijuana legalization

Despite decades of enforcement and untold millions of dollars, marijuana prohibition does not work.

Initiative 502 possesses the potential to clear the air and allow Washington to legalize small amounts of marijuana for recreational use among adults 21 and older. The ballot measure outlines a sensible plan for the state to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana.

I-502 is not a perfect plan, but the potential benefits outweigh the potential pitfalls.

Read more

Press Editorial

October 16, 2012

John Urquhart for sheriff

King County voters last experienced a contested race for sheriff in 2005.

The race on the ballot next month, between appointed Sheriff Steve Strachan and John Urquhart, a former King County Sheriff’s Office sergeant, offers voters a choice between a pair of capable candidates.

Former Sheriff Sue Rahr stepped down in March, and the King County Council appointed Strachan for the interim. The election is to fill the remainder of Rahr’s term through December 2013.

Read more

Press Editorial

September 25, 2012

No need here for charter schools

Once again, Washington voters are being asked whether charter schools should be allowed here, as they are in 41 other states.

From some perspectives, a charter school run by a nonprofit organization with a goal of better education might make sense. But from the Issaquah perspective, charter schools are not needed. Test scores are among the highest in the state and 21 Issaquah School District students were recently named National Merit Scholarship semifinalists.

Supporters see charter schools as an alternative to a system seen as failing. The Issaquah district already strives to offer innovative curriculum for those students who need and desire more challenging classes. Witness the International Baccalaureate program at Skyline High School, the science-technology program for third graders, the Night Academy for students needing to make up failed high school classes and the Humanities Plus program for highly capable middle school students.

Read more

Press Editorial

July 24, 2012

Vote yes for juvenile justice center

At first glance, the Aug. 7 ballot request to build a new King County juvenile justice center might seem overly expensive at $200 million. While it is pricey, the proposed levy represents a good deal for King County taxpayers.

The juvenile justice center is where we hope few Issaquah families ever have to go. The center houses courtrooms where minors are tried, and a jail for underage offenders.

Calling current conditions poor is an understatement. The existing building is cramped. Designed decades ago, the courts and conference rooms are small and don’t meet today’s needs.

Read more

Press Editorial

March 27, 2012

Controversial bond deserves a yes vote

W  e wish the Issaquah School District had been more conservative in its request to fund the long list of items on the April 17 construction bond, but we get why it did so.

With another school bond ending its 20 years of tax collections, this is a good time to get a lot of catch-up work done on our school facilities, while still giving taxpayers a couple hundred dollars’ reduction in property taxes next year (an estimated $215 drop on a $500,000 assessed valuation home.)

Volunteers for Issaquah Schools, the group pushing a yes vote, say this is the biggest campaign it has ever mounted. It’s no wonder. With so many questions and a $219 million price tag, the proposed bond has raised a lot of eyebrows.

There are a lot of questions voters are asking, as we did. Do the middle schools really need artificial-turf fields? Does it really make sense to tear down Clark Elementary School? Does Tiger Mountain Community High School, population 80, really need to be relocated at a cost of $4 million? Isn’t $75,000 for clocks at Beaver Lake Middle School rather excessive? And so on.

Read more

Next Page »