Campaign season starts as candidates file for election

May 22, 2012

The ballot voters receive in the mailbox by late July is all but certain to contain some familiar names, as elected officials campaign for higher offices and other candidates try another run for elected office.

The period for candidates to enter races up for election on the August and November ballots ended May 18 in a buzz of activity.

Local voters face choices in countywide, legislative, statewide and federal offices.

Voters pick the top two candidates, regardless of party affiliation, Aug. 7 in the all-mail primary election. The top vote recipients then advance to an all-mail general election Nov. 6.

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Issaquah legislators top list for missed votes

May 1, 2012

Local legislators missed the most votes in the Legislature during the 2012 regular and special sessions.

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Liberty High School science teacher wins $10,000 prize

May 1, 2012

Celebrating are (from left) Alex Soldano, legislative aide to Rep. Marcie Maxwell; Liberty High School Principal Mike DeLetis; science teacher and winner of the Amgen award Mark Buchli; Carol Pawlak, of Amgen Corporate Communications and Philanthropy; Superintendent Steve Rasmussen; and Debbie Nye, district science specialist. By Jeffry Luke Photography

In a surprise presentation April 6, Mark Buchli, Liberty High School science teacher, was awarded the Amgen Award for Science Teaching Excellence and a $10,000 prize.

In front of a cheering all-school assembly, Carol Pawlak, of Amgen, announced Buchli as the winner and delivered a check for $10,000 to Buchli and the school.

Pawlak let students guess why she was there, giving clues about the winning teacher saying, “This teacher has been described as dynamic, innovated, gifted, inspiring – even cosmic. This teacher’s classroom is a space where learning is held in the highest regard.”

After the final clue explaining the teacher knows hands-on science and field trips are the fastest way to a student’s mind, especially field trips to an amusement park, the students shouted out Buchli’s name.

For 23 years, Buchli has been living his dream of teaching science including Advanced Placement biology, honors physics, general chemistry and general physics, and has been at Liberty High School since 2008.

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Issaquah legislators top list on missed votes tally

April 24, 2012

NEW — 3 p.m. April 24, 2012

Local legislators missed the most votes in the Legislature during the 2012 regular and special sessions.

Glenn Anderson

The information, released Tuesday in a report from the nonpartisan organization WashingtonVotes.org, ranks state Rep. Glenn Anderson at the top for both chambers, followed by state Sen. Cheryl Pflug and state Rep. Jay Rodne.

Anderson missed 95 votes to top the list for Senate and House of Representatives members. Pflug did not participate in 64 votes and Rodne did not participate in 62.

The lawmakers represent Issaquah and the 5th Legislative District.

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Councilman applauds decision to create ‘blue alert’

March 6, 2012

Local King County Councilman Reagan Dunn praised state legislators March 2 for creating a “blue alert” system to inform the public about people suspected of injuring or killing law enforcement officers.

The “blue alert” legislation passed both chambers of the Legislature and headed to Gov. Chris Gregoire to be signed into law. Modeled after the AMBER alert, a “blue alert” could use media resources to inform the public about suspects accused of harming law enforcement officers.

“Law enforcement officers dedicate their lives to the protection and service of others,” Dunn said in a statement. “Providing them with a ‘blue alert’ system shows we understand that an assault on them is an assault on the blanket of safety they provide all of us.”

Dunn introduced a County Council proposal to support the legislation Feb. 23, hours after a man fatally shot a state trooper in Kitsap County. The council unanimously supported the measure Feb. 27.

Local state Rep. Marcie Maxwell cosponsored the legislation in the House of Representatives.

Dunn, a Republican, is running for state attorney general against Democrat Bob Ferguson, a fellow councilman.

Local councilman urges Legislature to create ‘blue alert’

February 28, 2012

King County Councilman Reagan Dunn announced a plan Feb. 23 to urge state legislators to create a “blue alert” system to inform the public about people suspected of injuring or killing law enforcement officers.

The proposal came hours after a man fatally shot a state trooper in Kitsap County.

“We in government must do everything in our power to protect those who put their lives on the line every day in order to protect us,” he said in a statement.

Modeled after the AMBER alert, a “blue alert” could use media resources to inform the public about suspects accused of harming law enforcement officers.

“I am grateful that Councilmember Dunn is again offering his support to law enforcement to help stop future tragedies,” Republican state Rep. Mike Hope, prime sponsor of the “blue alert” legislation, said in a statement.

Local state Rep. Marcie Maxwell is a cosponsor of the measure.

Dunn, a Republican, is running for state attorney general against Democrat Bob Ferguson, a fellow councilman.

Issaquah-area councilman urges Legislature to create ‘blue alert’ for police

February 23, 2012

NEW — 4:30 p.m. Feb. 23, 2012

Reagan Dunn

King County Councilman Reagan Dunn announced a plan Thursday to urge state legislators create a “blue alert” system to inform the public about people suspected of injuring or killing law enforcement officers.

The proposal came hours after a man fatally shot a state trooper in Kitsap County. Dunn plans to introduce a motion Monday urging the council to support state legislation to create a “blue alert” system.

“This tragic pattern of injury and death to law enforcement officers in Washington state simply cannot continue,” he said in a statement. “We in government must do everything in our power to protect those who put their lives on the line everyday in order to protect us.”

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Governor signs same-sex marriage bill with local legislators’ support

February 14, 2012

Issaquah legislators joined Gov. Chris Gregoire to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington — a decision supporters hailed as an “historic” milestone.

Gov. Chris Gregoire

The governor, a Democrat, signed the legislation Feb. 13 as local state Sen. Cheryl Pflug and other supporters looked on from the packed State Reception Room at the Capitol.

The landmark legislation put Washington among the half-dozen states and Washington, D.C., to allow same-sex marriage, but the measure could face a challenge on the November ballot before any weddings occur.

“It is a day historians will mark as a milestone for equal rights — a day when we did what was right, we did what was just, and we did what was fair,” Gregoire said. “We stood up for equality and we did it together — Republicans and Democrats, gay and straight, young and old, and a variety of religious faiths. I’m proud of who and what we are in this state.”

The legislation cleared the state House of Representatives in a 55-43 decision Feb. 8 — the last hurdle before the measure reached the governor. Republican Glenn Anderson joined local Democrats in the House to approve a landmark bill to legalize same-sex marriage.

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Issaquah residents invited to legislative town hall

February 14, 2012

Residents can join Issaquah legislators to discuss the ongoing session in Olympia at town hall meetings in Mercer Island and Newcastle soon.

Meet state Sen. Steve Litzow and state Reps. Judy Clibborn and Marcie Maxwell — 41st Legislative District lawmakers — at the Feb. 18 meetings. The sessions come as the Legislature confronts a $1.5 billion shortfall in the state budget.

The bipartisan delegation — Republican Litzow; Democrats Clibborn and Maxwell — plans to answer participants’ questions.

The morning meeting is scheduled from 10-11:30 a.m. at Hazelwood Elementary School, 7100 116th Ave. S.E., Newcastle. The afternoon session is planned from 1:30-3 p.m. at Mercer Island High School, 9100 S.E. 42nd St., Mercer Island.

Participants can submit questions before the meeting. Email questions to townhall41@leg.wa.gov or mail them to Sen. Steve Litzow, P.O. Box 40441, Olympia, WA 98504.

Washington State Redistricting Commission members shifted the 41st District from encompassing Cougar Mountain neighborhoods to include North Issaquah and Sammamish. (Remaining Issaquah neighborhoods fall inside the 5th Legislative District.)

The realigned political maps go into effect for the November election.

Governor signs same-sex marriage into law after Issaquah legislators support bill

February 13, 2012

NEW — 5 p.m. Feb. 13, 2012

Issaquah legislators joined Gov. Chris Gregoire to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington — a decision supporters hailed as an “historic” milestone.

Gov. Chris Gregoire

The governor, a Democrat, signed the legislation Monday as local state Sen. Cheryl Pflug and other supporters looked on from the packed State Reception Room at the Capitol.

The landmark legislation put Washington among the half-dozen states and Washington, D.C., to allow same-sex marriage, but the measure could face a challenge on the November ballot before any weddings occur.

“It is a day historians will mark as a milestone for equal rights — a day when we did what was right, we did what was just, and we did what was fair,” Gregoire said. “We stood up for equality and we did it together — Republicans and Democrats, gay and straight, young and old, and a variety of religious faiths. I’m proud of who and what we are in this state.”

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