Issaquah agrees to support new EFR funding model

November 19, 2013

After 18 months of chess-like moves among its players, the Eastside Fire & Rescue board may have averted a checkmate by the city of Sammamish. It unanimously approved a new funding model at its Nov. 14 meeting.

The group agreed to shift to an 85-15 split.

That means 85 percent of EFR money would come from taxes on assessed property value and 15 percent from call volume. The change will be effective beginning with the 2015 budget. The change was recommended and presented by an ad hoc committee appointed last month to see if it could move negotiations along.

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EFR seeks families to adopt

November 19, 2013

As the holiday season draws near, Eastside Fire & Rescue is once again looking to help area families.

EFR’s adopt-a-family program has grown each year, with the goal of giving families financial help and inviting them to a firehouse for a holiday dinner. Last year, the program helped 26 families.

The Eastside Fire Benevolent Fund seeks to assist residents who are unable to buy gifts for their families during the holidays.

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Eastside Fire & Rescue Rope Drill / Oct. 29, 2013

November 12, 2013

Firefighters offer to hire mediator

November 5, 2013

Eastside Fire & Rescue’s firefighter’s union has offered to pay for a mediator to work out problems between Sammamish and Issaquah.

The two cities have been at loggerheads over the funding model for the regional fire agency. For years, Sammamish has been complaining that the current model ends up with Sammamish subsidizing fire services for other partners, in particular Issaquah.

For the past 18 months, Sammamish has been trying to negotiate a new funding model with the other EFR partners —Issaquah, North Bend and Fire Districts 10 and 38.

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Editorial

October 22, 2013

Lisa Callan for school board seat

Issaquah School District voters are fortunate to have two excellent choices for school board director seat 4. Both Alison Meryweather and Lisa Callan applied for the vacancy last spring when Chad Magendanz resigned to serve in the state Legislature.

The school board members struggled with the appointment, first split evenly between the two women. Eventually, Meryweather got the appointment.

Meryweather does have more lobbying experience and her confidence and knowledge makes her a leader in that arena. But community comes first.

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No injuries in Cedar Grove Road house fire

October 16, 2013

NEW — 12:10 p.m. Oct. 15, 2013

A large structure fire broke out in the 5700 block of Cedar Grove Road Southeast Oct. 15.

Eastside Fire & Rescue Public Information Officer Josie Williams said the homeowner was in the 1,200-square-foot residence and unwittingly started the fire. EFR got the call at 6:44 p.m.

“He was trying to start a fire in the fireplace and ended up with a problem,” Williams said. “Obviously, it got away from him.”

She confirmed the blaze did not spread to other properties and caused no injuries.

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Boundary Review Board OKs Klahanie annexation vote

October 15, 2013

In quick order, the King County Boundary Review Board unanimously gave preliminary approval Oct. 10 to Issaquah’s annexation request for the Klahanie area.

Two long meetings were held last month where government representatives from Issaquah and Sammamish were joined by a slew of public opinion on the proposed annexation. The Boundary Review Board took the information given and returned with a decision for Klahanie voters to vote on whether Issaquah should include them in its borders.

“None of these are easy,” board member Robert Cook said as the board held informal discussion before a vote. “And a couple factors gave us some sleepless nights. The overriding fact is that the city of Issaquah is responding to a petition of residents that want to be a part of the city. They did what they were asked to do by the citizenry. They did what they are mandated to do by state law. There really aren’t any losers in this, because the citizens will vote on this and determine their own fate. It’s kind of a win-win.”

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Two candidates file for fire district 10 seat

October 8, 2013

Two candidates have filed to run for the open commissioner seat No. 3 position in King County Fire Protection District No. 10.

Financial adviser Larry Rude will run against Snoqualmie Tribe member Ray Mullen.

Retired fire officer Rick Gaines remains unopposed to retain his commissioner’s seat No. 4.

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Fire District 10 assures Klahanie residents of continued service

October 8, 2013

Fire District 10 wants the Klahanie area to know it will have continued service in an uncertain future.

In a quickly planned meeting announced just the day before, administrators of Eastside Fire & Rescue and board members from Fire District 10 met Oct. 3 to pass a resolution seeking the first right to purchase Fire Station 83 should Sammamish decide to leave EFR and close the site. In short work, the leadership discussed the rationale behind the resolution and adopted it unanimously.

“There was a lot of speculation of what was going to happen to the fire protection there should Issaquah annex Klahanie or Sammamish choose to close Fire Station 83,” Fire Chief Lee Soptich said. “We have these different scenarios floating out there. And paramount in my mind is that I think it’s important to let them know that District 10 has a responsibility to continue fire service in that area.”

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EFR goes pink for breast cancer awareness

October 1, 2013

Employees at Eastside Fire & Rescue will again wear pink shirts in October as they show support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Oct. 3-5, 9-11 and 15-17.

While the focus of raising awareness is primarily related to prevention measures and treatment methods of breast cancer, EFR joins with the International Association of Firefighters and many other local and national groups in the fight against all cancers.

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