City Council considers offering annexation to parts of Klahanie PAA

March 18, 2014

Issaquah might still offer annexation to parts of the Klahanie area — and that might take another year.

In the March 10 City Council work session and the March 11 Land and Shore Committee meeting, exploring next steps for the Klahanie potential annexation area took center stage. King County Elections certified the Feb. 11 special election results Feb. 25, in which residents in that area voted whether to join the city of Issaquah. Needing 60 percent to pass and for those residents to assume the city’s bonded indebtedness, the vote earned 49.47 percent in favor of joining Issaquah.

Council President Paul Winterstein identified five options available to the council for consideration in light of the certified vote.

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Issaquah to host tourism expert

March 18, 2014

The Issaquah Chamber of Commerce — in coordination with the city of Issaquah and local hoteliers, restaurants and hometown attractions — is featuring world-renowned expert Roger Brooks in a community presentation about developing Issaquah’s tourism program.

The presentation is from 6-8 p.m. March 31 at Pickering Barn, 1730 10th Ave N.W. Registration is strongly encouraged to ensure a seat. Attendees can register online at http://bit.ly/1dRvlgg by March 28.

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Editorial

March 18, 2014

An annexation that may make sense

Washington State Parks has asked the city of Issaquah to consider annexing Lake Sammamish State Park. The idea is worth considering.

As it stands, the park, even though it is a state park, sits in unincorporated King County. However, it is surrounded on all sides — except the lake side — by Issaquah.

As there have been plans to add some developments to the park, Issaquah has taken the lead in vetting those plans. But, once a specific plan is chosen, the county would need to get involved in issuing needed permits.

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City hosts swim meet

March 18, 2014

The city of Issaquah will host its first All-Comers Swim Meet March 21.

The meet is for all levels of swimmers ages 6 and older. All swimmers must be able to pass a deep-end swim test and be comfortable in deep water to participate.

The event is focused on fun and getting unofficial times for swim-team based events. All participants will receive ribbons; and the winner of each heat will receive a first-place medal.

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King County hosts open house series for trail project update

March 11, 2014

Come to any of four King County Parks’ open houses and learn more about design and planning for the South Sammamish segment of the East Lake Sammamish Trail project.

King County Parks is hosting the open house series to update residents about converting this portion of the trail from the interim soft surface trail to a master planned trail, including paving, soft-surface shoulders, fencing, landscaping, intersection crossing treatments and more.

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To the Editor

March 11, 2014

Klahanie

Open letter to the Issaquah City Council:

The vote is over and the residents of Klahanie and surrounding neighborhoods have said no to annexation to Issaquah. My neighbors and I voted no, not because we wanted to stay unincorporated, but because we would like to pursue Sammamish as an option. In order for that to happen, and to have the opportunity to belong to a city, I am asking for your help.

When Mayor Fred Butler and Councilman Joe Forkner were campaigning last fall, both said that they would support removing Klahanie from Issaquah’s Potential Annexation Area if the citizens rejected Issaquah annexation.

Please remember your words last fall, Mr. Butler, and please support our area in finding a home with your neighbor to the north. Time is of the essence! I would further request you not delay this process with considerations of dividing up the Klahanie PAA, which would only lead to difficulties for both cities when it comes to providing services and road improvements.

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Klahanie future remains unclear as county certifies election

March 4, 2014

Klahanie-area residents have spoken — and 32 of them may make all the difference.

The final results of the Feb. 11 election are in. With 49 percent of registered voters casting a ballot, only 49.47 percent, or 1,504, voted for an Issaquah annexation. While 50.53 percent, or 1,536, voted against the measure.

Even with the narrow number of votes separating the sides, it is outside the 0.25 percent margin that would trigger an automatic recount. Though one side or the other could pay for one, no one has suggested they are willing to do so.

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Editorial

March 4, 2014

It’s time to let Klahanie go

Issaquah made the best offer it could to Klahanie, but most residents in the area are no longer interested in being part of that city. It’s time to let them go.

It had always been assumed that Klahanie would eventually become part of Issaquah. Indeed, the southern half of what is now Sammamish was at one envisioned as part of Issaquah.

Sammamish, of course, went its own way and formed its own city. In 2005, when Issaquah last attempted to annex Klahanie, Sammamish was fairly new — it didn’t even have a proper city hall yet.

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Editorial

February 25, 2014

Death penalty overdue for reconsideration

More than five years ago, this newspaper called for the state Legislature to revisit the value of Washington’s death penalty. Last month, Gov. Jay Inslee opened the door to begin the overdue conversation by implementing a death-penalty moratorium while he is the state’s elected CEO.

At first glance, it may seem unimportant. Washington state has had only five executions in the past 50 years.

But consider that there are nine men currently on death row in Washington prisons. Consider that taxpayers pay for the prosecution, for the public defenders and for the court system. Those cases are under appeal and the appeals will go forward. Inslee’s mandate does not do away with capital punishment, it just removes the killings from happening on his watch.

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Stormwater program invites public comment

February 25, 2014

A draft Stormwater Management Program report is available for public comment through March 24.

The document was created to educate the public about stormwater pollution, outline steps to reduce harmful discharges and limit runoff in environmentally sensitive areas.

Under a municipal stormwater permit for Western Washington, the city of Issaquah is authorized to discharge stormwater into “waters of the state,” including Issaquah Creek and Lake Sammamish, if the city takes action to prevent stormwater pollution.

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