Down Home 4th, Heritage Day are pure patriotism; see fireworks at state park

July 2, 2015

Robin Kelley may be kept busiest when it comes to Salmon Days in October. But as director of festivals for the city of Issaquah, she confided that their favorite time of year just might be the Fourth of July.

That’s when the community turns out for Issaquah’s Down Home 4th of July and Heritage Day.

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May’s Hometown Hero Bill Merritt saves lives

May 12, 2015

Bill Merritt is in the business of saving lives.

By Greg Farrar Collin Skone (left), of Klahanie, receives a lesson in cardiopulmonary resuscitation from volunteer Bill Merritt, at the Issaquah Citizens Corps information booth during the 2011 Issaquah-Sammamish Health and Safety Fair at Pickering Barn.

By Greg Farrar
Collin Skone (left), of Klahanie, receives a lesson in cardiopulmonary resuscitation from volunteer Bill Merritt, at the Issaquah Citizens Corps information booth during the 2011 Issaquah-Sammamish Health and Safety Fair at Pickering Barn.

The fourth-generation Issaquah resident has worked as a firefighter, an EMT and now operates his own emergency training education business.

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Truck punches hole in I-90/Front Street overpass girder

March 17, 2015

A Recology CleanScapes truck hit the side of the eastbound Interstate 90 overpass over Front Street North on March 13.

The company hauls trash in parts of Issaquah.

The lift that slides a trash bin off the truck was in the up position, and it tore a large hole in the bridge girders. Crumbled concrete was strewn about and a large hole was gouged in the pavement from the overhead force that stopped the truck.

That force was so great that it bent the cab of the truck all the way forward and it slammed into the pavement.

By Kathleen R. Merrill A hydraulic crane pulls the lift of a Recology CleanScapes truck out of the overpass. The truck’s hydraulic lift was buried in the hole. The driver escaped unharmed, even though the cab of his truck bent down and slammed into the pavement from the force of the crash.

By Kathleen R. Merrill
A hydraulic crane pulls the lift of a Recology CleanScapes truck out of the overpass. The truck’s hydraulic lift was buried in the hole. The driver escaped unharmed, even though the cab of his truck bent down and slammed into the pavement from the force of the crash.

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2014 remembered for what went away

December 31, 2014

Annexations, retirements, plastic bags, development, a looming school closure, retail marijuana, bank robberies, the Concerts on the Green series, and business and occupation taxes made the list of the top 10 news stories of the year in Issaquah.

Here are those stories, in no particular order:

Klahanie-area annexation issue moves to Sammamish

Issaquah residents voted no, for the second time, on the city of Issaquah annexing the Klahanie area. The King County Growth Management Planning Council then unanimously approved the idea to move the Klahanie area from Issaquah’s Potential Annexation Area to Sammamish’s.

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Council lowers B&O tax increase, raises property taxes, as expected

November 25, 2014

Business leaders spoke up and the Issaquah City Council listened.

In a 5-2 vote, council members approved a 50 percent hike in the city’s business and occupation taxes. The increase was a major part of the overall $168.6 million 2015 budget adopted by the council at its regular meeting Nov. 17.

Initially, Mayor Fred Butler proposed a 150 percent increase in the B&O taxes over a two-year period. At a public hearing Nov. 3, representatives from the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce and some of Issaquah’s biggest businesses, such as Darigold and Costco, said that was just too much.

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Issaquah lowers B & O tax increase, raises property taxes, as expected

November 18, 2014

NEW — 11:26 p.m. Nov. 18, 2014

Business leaders spoke up and the Issaquah City Council listened.

In a 5-2 vote, council members approved a 50 percent hike in the city’s business and occupation taxes. The increase was a major part of the overall $168.6 million 2015 budget adopted by the council at its regular meeting last night.

Initially, Mayor Fred Butler proposed a 150 percent increase in the B&O taxes over a two-year period. At a public hearing Nov. 3, representatives from the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce and some of Issaquah’s biggest business, such as Darigold and Costco, said that was just too much.

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Darigold, Costco ask council to rethink B&O tax increase

November 11, 2014

A few prominent Issaquah businesses are asking the city to rethink a business and occupation tax increase included in Mayor Fred Butler’s 2015 budget proposal.

Representatives from Costco, Darigold and the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce attended a Nov. 3 Issaquah City Council public hearing, where they offered similar concerns about the effect an increased tax rate would have on the business community.

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Editorial — Council considers B&O tax increase

November 11, 2014

The city had proposed a 150 percent increase in the city’s B&O tax to add $1 million to the budget’s general fund for 2015. The increase was to be phased in over the next two years with the first phase to be implemented April 1.

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Man behind the murals gets his day

July 15, 2014

Oregon-based muralist Larry Kangas wasn’t born in Issaquah and he didn’t live in the city for any significant amount of time.

But his stamp on the Eastside suburb is so visible that Mayor Fred Butler officially declared July 19 Larry Kangas Day in Issaquah.

Kangas is the artist behind the murals found at points across the city. He died of cancer Nov. 25, 2013, but his memory lives on in the more than 1,000 works he crafted in the Pacific Northwest, including six in Issaquah.

By Norb Ziegler Larry Kangas paints the side panels of the aquarium exhibit at the Issaquah Salmon History on Aug. 20, 2013.

By Norb Ziegler
Larry Kangas paints the side panels of the aquarium exhibit at the Issaquah Salmon History on Aug. 20, 2013.

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Pride of a city

February 21, 2014

Artist’s memory lives on in his many murals

Oregon-based muralist Larry Kangas was a one-man show with a paintbrush.

He had the innate ability to tell the story of a community with paint, ladders, a large blank wall and an unrivaled imagination.

 By Greg Farrar Larry Kangas puts some finishing touches on ‘The Mill Street Logging Scene,’ a mural of turn-of-the-century Issaquah, painted in 1997 on the wall of the Sunset Alehouse at the Downtown Issaquah Plaza.

By Greg Farrar
Larry Kangas puts some finishing touches on ‘The Mill Street Logging Scene,’ a mural of turn-of-the-century Issaquah, painted in 1997 on the wall of the Sunset Alehouse at the Downtown Issaquah Plaza.

Kangas died of cancer Nov. 25, 2013, but his memory lives on in the more than 1,000 murals he crafted across the Pacific Northwest, a few of which grace Issaquah walls.

“Larry never had any children. He was a great uncle for many kids, but he called his murals his kids, his legacy,” said Sandy Kangas, Larry’s wife.

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