Issaquah voters re-elect Councilman Joshua Schaer

November 15, 2011

Joshua Schaer (right), calls his mother Nancy Schaer, of Redmond, to tell her about his lead in the Issaquah City Council race, as former Councilman David Kappler chats with other election night partygoers at the Issaquah Brewhouse. By Greg Farrar 

Joshua Schaer, the only City Council member to face a challenger in a little-noticed campaign season, trounced opponent TJ Filley as the off-year election came to a close.

Incumbents scored leads in the initial election results released just after 8 p.m. Election Day, Nov. 8, eliminating the prospect of a long pause before a frontrunner emerged. Schaer, alongside incumbents on the Issaquah School Board and Port of Seattle Commission, pulled ahead early.

Though voters decided on the majority of council seats, only Schaer attracted a challenger. Incumbent Councilman Fred Butler, appointed Councilwoman Stacy Goodman and candidate Paul Winterstein cruised into office in the other council races. Terms for the triumphant candidates start in January.

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Port of Seattle incumbents sail ahead

November 15, 2011

Port of Seattle Commission incumbents Bill Bryant and Gael Tarleton sailed to re-election Nov. 8. Bryant trounced challenger Dean Willard, a Sammamish resident, and Tarleton defeated Richard Pope in a lopsided contest to remain on the nonpartisan commission.

The race hinged on the economy and the environment, and the role the Port of Seattle plays in relation to each issue. The commission is the agency responsible for the Port of Seattle and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

City Council, Issaquah School Board incumbents post big leads

November 8, 2011

Joshua Schaer (right), calls his mother Nancy Schaer, of Redmond, to tell her about his lead in the Issaquah City Council race, as former Councilman David Kappler chats with other election night partygoers at the Issaquah Brewhouse. By Greg Farrar

NEW — 8:20 p.m. Nov. 8, 2011

Joshua Schaer, the only City Council member to face a challenger in a quiet campaign season, posted a sizable — and almost certainly insurmountable — lead against opponent TJ Filley as election results started to dribble out Tuesday night.

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Deadline looms to remove campaign signs

November 8, 2011

Relief is in sight for local motorists and residents tired of seeing signs for City Council, Issaquah School Board and other political candidates.

Though the ballot count continues, Election Day is done, and the deadline to yank political signs from along state highways and city streets looms.

Under state law, property owners must remove temporary political signs visible from state highways by Nov. 18 — or 10 days after the election.

Issaquah rules call for campaign signs to be removed by Nov. 15, or within a week after Election Day. City Code Compliance Officer Michele Forkner starts to round up rogue signs after the deadline passes.

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Find up-to-date election information, results online

November 8, 2011

The latest information and results from the Nov. 8 election is available from The Issaquah Press at www.issaquahpress.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/issaquahpress and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/issaquahpress.

King County Elections plans to release updated results at 4:30 p.m. weekdays until every ballot is counted. Local voters cast ballots in City Council, Issaquah School Board and Port of Seattle Commission races, and for statewide ballot initiatives.

The results remain unofficial until the county Canvassing Board meets Nov. 29 to certify the election. The certified results should then be posted to the elections website, www.kingcounty.gov/elections.

In the meantime, King County Elections is offering voters a behind-the-scenes look at ballot processing activities.

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Press Editorial

November 1, 2011

Tarleton, Bryant for port commissioners

The concerns in the races for the Port of Seattle Commission are about enemies and rivals — in the name of terrorism and new competition.

Candidate Gael Tarleton, the commission’s expert on security issues, is a shoo-in for another term. Her opponent, Richard Pope, is a perennial candidate for one office or another and not a serious contender.

The other contested port race includes sharp, dedicated candidates — incumbent Bill Bryant and his challenger, Sammamish resident Dean Willard.

Bryant has steered the commission through tough financial management issues and corrected the course. His commitment to bringing port issues to the public and for the public is outstanding.

Willard’s decision to challenge Bryant — a leader respected by Democrats and Republicans, business and environmental interests alike — seems oddly timed. We encourage Willard to remain engaged in the public process. The local political scene needs more candidates with his enthusiasm and ideas.

However, Bryant is the best choice to continue leading the Port of Seattle on the rough seas ahead.

Catch candidate forum replays until Election Day

November 1, 2011

Issaquah residents can hear from local and regional candidates during replays of a candidate forum on Issaquah Channel 21 at 4 and 9 p.m. each day until Election Day, Nov. 8.

Organized by The Issaquah Press and moderated by Publisher Debbie Berto, the forum attracted candidates for City Council, Issaquah School Board and Port of Seattle Commission.

The candidates, gathered at the King County Library System headquarters in Issaquah, answered questions Oct. 13 in 40-minute sections organized by office.

Find up-to-date election information, results online

November 1, 2011

Election Day is approaching and, for the latest information and results from the Nov. 8 contest, join The Issaquah Press at www.issaquahpress.com, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/issaquahpress and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/issaquahpress.

In the meantime, find comprehensive information about the City Council, Issaquah School Board, Port of Seattle Commission races, plus statewide ballot initiatives, at www.issaquahpress.com/category/election.

King County Elections plans to release the initial results just after 8 p.m. on Election Day. Expect subsequent tallies to be released at 4:30 p.m. weekdays. The elections office plans updates until every ballot is counted.

The results remain unofficial until the county Canvassing Board meets Nov. 29 to certify the election. The certified results should then be posted to the elections website, www.kingcounty.gov/elections.

The elections office started to receive marked ballots days after the office mailed blank forms to voters in mid-October. The agency starts processing ballots upon receipt, but law prohibits elections staffers from tabulating results before 8 p.m. Election Day. In the run-up to the deadline, staffers open ballots and check voters’ signatures in a secure location at the elections headquarters in Renton.

If a signature problem arises, staffers contact voters to resolve the issue in order for the ballot to be counted.

Cruise passengers urged to explore beyond Seattle

October 25, 2011

From the Space Needle to Pike Place Market, Seattle has plenty to offer its guests, but the Washington Tourism Alliance and the Port of Seattle are encouraging cruise ship tourists to explore beyond the predictable city limits. They are hoping tourists will venture into the suburban and rural areas outside of Seattle, including Issaquah.

“It’s really about what can you offer as an attractive package as an add-on to the cruise purchase,” said Dan Trimble, then-economic development manager for the city of Issaquah. “We’re pretty fortunate here to have several things that can be easily compartmentalized to those packages.”

Bill Bryant

From the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery and Cougar Mountain Zoo, to outdoor opportunities and shopping districts, Issaquah has plenty to offer its tourists, Trimble said.

This is part of a plan carried out by the newly established Washington Tourism Alliance, which is working along with the Port of Seattle and other tourism agencies to let people know about the tourist opportunities that exist outside of Seattle.

“The cruise ship (industry) brings about $400 million to King County and the region, and that’s because the passengers are staying one to two nights in the area. But most of them are spending that time in downtown Seattle,” Seattle Port Commissioner Bill Bryant said.

He said he hopes the cruise ship tourists extend their stay and explore the surrounding areas, “whether that is wineries in Woodinville or going out to Snoqualmie Falls.”

The state Legislature recently cut funding for the state tourism office.

In its place, various stakeholders including the port, some of the hotel associations and some of the restaurant associations have established the WTA to serve as a vehicle for communities to reach out to tourists, Bryant said.

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Hear from candidates in Issaquah Video Voters’ Guide

October 23, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 23, 2011

The countdown to Election Day is on, ballots started to arrive in mailboxes and voters face a multitude of choices.

Options abound for local voters to learn about City Council, Issaquah School Board and regional races.

City Council candidates recorded statements for the Issaquah Video Voters’ Guide to air until Nov. 8, Election Day.

Or, Issaquah Channel 21 viewers can watch a candidate forum recorded Oct. 13.

Organized by The Issaquah Press and moderated by Publisher Debbie Berto, the forum attracted candidates for City Council, Issaquah School Board and Port of Seattle Commission.

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