Washington Conservation Corps seeks members

August 21, 2012

The teams maintaining the trails on state and King County lands near Issaquah often include members of the Washington Conservation Corps — a fresh-out-of-college bunch eager to earn experience in the environmental field.

Like the New Deal-era Civilian Conservation Corps, the 21st-century equivalent enlists young adults to tackle habitat and infrastructure projects.

The state Department of Ecology needs applicants to fill 300 service positions in 16 counties throughout the state.

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Kathleen Drew, former Issaquah lawmaker, enters secretary of state race

November 22, 2011

Kathleen Drew

Kathleen Drew, a onetime Issaquah state senator and a former aide to Gov. Chris Gregoire, entered the race Nov. 14 to succeed retiring Secretary of State Sam Reed.

Drew, 51, served as a representative for Issaquah and other Eastside communities in the mid-1990s. In the Legislature, she crafted a tough ethics law for public employees — a national model designed to tamp down on conflicts of interest in state government — and led the effort to protect the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery from budget cuts.

“My strength is really that I’m an experienced public service manager on extremely complex issues at the state level,” she said in a pre-announcement interview.

Drew later served in Gregoire’s administration, initially as a policy adviser focused on the environment and then on general government issues. In the environmental role, she crafted the legislation to establish the Puget Sound Partnership, a regional effort to clean up Puget Sound.

Drew left Gregoire’s office last month to serve as a policy adviser at the state Department of Enterprise Services — a super-agency responsible for handling payroll and personnel, as well as managing contracts, real estate and supplies.

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Kathleen Drew, former Issaquah lawmaker, enters secretary of state race

November 14, 2011

NEW — 2:30 p.m. Nov. 14, 2011

Kathleen Drew, a onetime Issaquah state senator and a former aide to Gov. Chris Gregoire, entered the race Monday to succeed retiring Secretary of State Sam Reed.

Drew, 51, served as a representative for Issaquah and other Eastside communities in the mid-1990s. In the Legislature, she crafted a tough ethics law for public employees — a national model designed to tamp down on conflicts of interest in state government — and led the effort to protect the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery from budget cuts.

“My strength is really that I’m an experienced public service manager on extremely complex issues at the state level,” she said in a pre-announcement interview.

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Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank emphasizes fresh fare

September 6, 2011

The emphasis at the Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank is on fresh fare, as clients call for more healthy options on pantry shelves and administrators add more space for nutritious foods.

The nascent effort to offer more fresh fare to clients comes as Cori Kauk settles in as executive director and pantry staffers put information from a client survey into use.

The municipal Resource Conservation Office and AmeriCorps members conducted a survey in July to gather input from food bank clients. The respondents asked for more fresh and healthy foods, plus more fruits and vegetables, at the downtown pantry. The survey also indicated clients’ interest in gluten-free and reduced-sodium foods.

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State seeks adults to aid conservation projects

August 16, 2011

The state Department of Ecology needs 245 people between the ages of 18 and 25 to plant native shrubs and trees, restore salmon-bearing streams, respond to emergencies and more.

The agency is seeking applicants to the Washington Conservation Corps, a program to put young adults, including military veterans, on the job at projects in 16 counties statewide.

For the 2011-12 service year, the Department of Ecology intends to hire 150 Washington Conservation Corps AmeriCorps members using a $2 million AmeriCorps grant from the state Commission for National and Community Service.

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Washington Conservation Corps seeks members

August 15, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Aug. 15, 2011

The state Department of Ecology needs 245 people between 18 and 25 to plant native shrubs and trees, restore salmon-bearing streams, respond to emergencies and more.

The agency is seeking applicants to the Washington Conservation Corps, a program to put young adults, including military veterans, on the job at projects in 16 counties statewide.

For the 2011-12 service year, the Department of Ecology intends to hire 150 Washington Conservation Corps AmeriCorps members using a $2 million AmeriCorps grant from the state Commission for National and Community Service.

AmeriCorps Education Awards received through the Corps Network, a national service partner, support the remaining positions.

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Entrepreneurs can attend emergency preparedness workshop

July 7, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. July 7, 2011

Issaquah entrepreneurs can learn how to create a business survival plan in case of a natural disaster or other emergency July 12.

The emergency preparedness workshop is part of the “Open for Business” program. The workshop is designed to provide tools to small to mid-sized businesses to create a comprehensive business survival plan.

The workshop features several speakers, including a business continuity manager from the University of Washington, as well as a risk manager from Liberty Mutual.

The event is 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. July 12 in the Council Chambers at Shoreline City Hall, 17500 Midvale Ave. N. RSVP to Jill Rucker, AmeriCorps VISTA emergency management program assistant, at jrucker@shorelinewa.gov.

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Issaquah food bank offers free summer snacks

June 28, 2011

For some, summer means hunger.

The Summer Lunch Program attracts clients and their children June 21 to the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank, which provided grocery bags of healthy children’s snacks  By Greg Farrar

During the school year, the federally funded National School Lunch Program keeps students fed during the breakfast and lunch hours, offering free or reduced-price meals to children in need.

Once school gets out for the summer, those meals disappear.

Thanks to the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank and volunteers from Eastridge Church, families can get free, healthy snacks for their children every Tuesday throughout the summer, until Aug. 16.

“These families have to make choices between buying meals or paying for bills,” Lindsay Ztyree, an AmeriCorps worker with Eastridge Church, said.

Families must live in one of the following ZIP codes to participate: 98027, 98029, 98075 or 98059, and have proof of address and identification.

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Forecast is green for Issaquah Valley Elementary rain garden

June 7, 2011

Project gives water a place to go in school parking lot

A group of Issaquah Valley Elementary School students plant native species in the rain garden near a new city-owned parking lot and bus loop by their school. By Mary Joe de Beck

What used to be a strip of gravel parking spots near Issaquah Valley Elementary School is now a paved parking lot and bus loop. The new impervious surface has led to another development: a student-dug rain garden filled with 500 plants of varying shades of green.

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Buy (nearly) all you need at Goodwill for a year

May 31, 2011

Beautiful Existence, with her son Epic, is trying to buy almost everything she uses from Goodwill for a year. Contributed

A local resident has taken up a unique challenge this year: to shop only at Goodwill for everything she needs — except for things like food, hygiene items and prescriptions.

Beautiful Existence is what she calls herself, a representation of her life and dedication to humanity design, according to her blog. Her motivation for the challenge came from a childhood of shopping at thrift stores and learning to live in an environmentally friendly way. She grew up on a farm in Olympia, where she says her parents taught her the importance of conservation and living frugally.

“I was actually in a thrift store with my mom last year and I thought, ‘OK, all these people do all these challenges. I wonder if I could buy from a thrift store all year?’” she said.

She started her blog and garnered some unexpected media attention, boosting her followers from 75 to 200-plus followers a day, most of whom leave comments on the site thanking her for the inspiration.

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