February 18, 2014
Tempers flared Feb. 11 at Faith United Methodist Church’s community meeting to discuss hosting Tent City 4.
Almost 200 residents — with concerns for children, jobs and safety — crowded into the church on Issaquah-Pine Lake Road in unincorporated King County. The meeting, according to the Rev. Dr. John Brewer, was to share information about the possibility of housing the traveling homeless shelter on church grounds.
“We were approached two and a half weeks ago with a serious request,” Brewer said. “While we had only briefly considered hosting in the summer time, this request came urgently.”
February 10, 2014
NEW — 6 a.m. Feb. 10, 2014
Sen. Andy Hill (R-45) announced he would not move ahead with a bill he introduced to alter Issaquah’s tax credit if it were to annex the Klahanie area.
Under current law, Issaquah would get a state sales tax credit for annexing the Klahanie area. Hill introduced a bill Jan. 29 that would have eliminated that credit.
The bill came before the Senate Ways & Means Committee for a public hearing Feb. 4. Hill is chairman of that committee.
In a statement Feb. 6, Hill said he would not continue to advance the legislation.
January 14, 2014
The Sammamish City Council is trying to make the Klahanie annexation area an offer it can’t refuse.
The council voted unanimously Jan. 7 that if the Klahanie area does not vote to be absorbed into Issaquah, Sammamish will “fast track” an annexation of its own. It also made a laundry list of promises for what types of services it would provide Klahanie-area residents if they were to enter Sammamish.
“We would endeavor to have a vote of the Klahanie area as soon as possible,” Councilman Don Gerend said.
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.
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.
October 2, 2013
NEW — 10:45 a.m. Oct. 2, 2013
Tent City 4 might move to Sammamish.
Members of the Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church Council are meeting tonight to decide if they want to extend an invitation to the group. If they do, the encampment could be in Sammamish a little more than two weeks later.
Organizers from the Tent City community received a shock late this summer when Bellevue, whose turn had arrived to host the traveling tented encampment, denied Tent City 4’s return.
“There are now two campsites on the Eastside,” Elisabeth Maupin, coordinator of the Issaquah Sammamish Interfaith Coalition, said, explaining the current Bellevue situation. “The other campsite had already filed for a permit to stay in Bellevue. And because Bellevue has a codicil that only allows for one campsite, the other camp was rejected.”
January 15, 2013
Issaquah could contribute more to Eastside Fire & Rescue if the regional agency changes to a funding model based on the amount of calls each member produces.
Meanwhile, Sammamish could trim fire service costs by $156,000 and $314,000 per year if EFR partners — Issaquah, North Bend, Sammamish, and fire districts 10 and 38 — agree on changing the funding model.
For Issaquah and North Bend, the change could substantially increase the amount the partners pay to EFR in the name of maintaining the agency’s current incarnation beyond 2014.
A committee of elected officials and staff members from each partner met last month to discuss the implications of using call load as a factor in determining how much to charge.
August 21, 2012
Issaquah could pay a larger share to keep Eastside Fire & Rescue stable, after officials in neighboring Sammamish asked for other partners to contribute more to correct perceived inequity in funding Sammamish Plateau fire stations.
The stations in question receive large portions of funding from Sammamish, but most incidents handled by crews at the stations occur in Issaquah.
Sammamish City Manager Ben Yazici met with representatives from Issaquah and Fire District 10 in recent weeks to discuss potential solutions to the funding issue.
(Fire District 10 is the EFR partner serving residents in Klahanie, May Valley, Mirrormont, Preston and Tiger Mountain in the Issaquah area, plus Carnation in rural King County.)
The discussion is centered on funding for Station 83, at 3425 Issaquah-Pine Lake Road S.E., and Station 81, at 2030 212th Ave. S.E.
Issaquah-headquartered EFR determines the bill for partners based on the assessed value of property in each city or district.
April 24, 2012
Issaquah School District voters overwhelmingly approved a $219 million bond to fund construction and renovation projects on campuses across the district.
In the April 17 special election, 70 percent of voters — encompassing more than 15,000 yes votes of out more than 22,000 ballots cast — approved the measure. (The measure needed to receive a 60 percent yes vote from a minimum turnout of 12,229 voters.)
Despite the passage of the bond, local homeowners will pay less in property taxes to the schools than they do now because a previous bond issue is set to expire this year.
The retirement of the earlier bond will drop the local tax rate from $4.85 per $1,000 of assessed property value to $4.05. Passage of the new bond would put the rate at $4.42.
April 17, 2012
Though the deadline for the April 17 special election is history, King County Elections officials continue to reach out to voters to resolve signature issues on ballots from the all-mail contest.
Staffers compare the signatures on returned ballot envelopes against the signature on file in voter registrations. If the elections office receives unsigned ballots, officials attempt to contact the affected voters to resolve the problem. Signature problems must be resolved before the election is certified April 27.