Legislative candidates focus on education at forum

October 23, 2012

Candidates staked moderate positions and touted the importance of education as the contenders for offices to represent Issaquah in Olympia gathered for a candidate forum Oct. 18.

Education emerged as the signature theme in the races to represent local constituents in the state Senate and state House of Representatives. Candidates also tackled issues related to taxation, transportation, land use and — as lawmakers prepare for more budget cuts next year — government spending.

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Department of Transportation hosts local meeting on Snoqualmie Pass project

October 22, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 22, 2012

The state Department of Transportation is at work on a major project to improve safety and meet traffic demands on the east side of Snoqualmie Pass, and local residents can comment on the project.

The project is on a 15-mile stretch between Hyak and Easton in Kittitas County. Improvements to the corridor include building a six-lane highway, stabilizing rock slopes, building wildlife crossings, reducing sharp curves and adding chain-up areas.

The 45-day public comment period for the draft environmental review on avalanche structures proposed for the project runs through Nov. 19.

The agency plans to hold a public meeting for residents to ask questions and discuss the project from 4-7 p.m. Tuesday at the Lewis Creek Visitor Center, 5808 Lakemont Blvd. S.E., Bellevue, near Cougar Ridge Elementary School.

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Meet congressional, legislative candidates at forum

October 9, 2012

Hear from the candidates for offices in Olympia and Washington, D.C., at a candidate forum cosponsored by The Issaquah Press, the American Association of University Women and the League of Women Voters.

The lineup for the Oct. 18 forum includes candidates for the state House of Representatives and state Senate, plus a candidate to represent Issaquah in Congress. The forum includes candidates in contested and uncontested races.

The event is not a debate. Candidates offer opening statements to the audience and then answer a series of questions from the moderator, Publisher Debbie Berto.

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Issaquah man dies in fall from Kittitas County cliff

August 7, 2012

Police said a 51-year-old Issaquah man died after falling from a cliff the evening of Aug. 4 in Kittitas County, about 10 miles northeast of Snoqualmie Pass.

Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office investigators said Issaquah resident Glenn Williams, accompanied by his wife and daughter, stopped along a U.S. Forest Service road. Police said Williams then moved to a rock cliff to take in the view, and fell 40 to 50 feet into shallow water in Lake Kachess below.

The incident occurred at about 9:30 p.m. in a remote area along the lake, a reservoir along the Kachess River in rural Kittitas County. The southern end of Lake Kachess is less than a mile from Interstate 90.

Police said a boat on Lake Kachess picked up Williams and took him to shore, where he was later pronounced dead.

Units from the sheriff’s office, Kittitas County Fire District 8 and Kittitas County Hospital District 2 responded to the scene.

The reason for the fall and the cause of death remain under investigation. The sheriff’s office said alcohol appears to be a factor in the incident.

Investors can buy bonds to fund Washington highway projects

July 17, 2012

Investors can purchase bonds to support state highway projects, jobs and the economy through the Buy Washington Bonds effort, a program announced July 5 by State Treasurer James McIntire.

The state is issuing bonds for high-profile construction projects such as the Alaskan Way Viaduct tunnel replacement, Interstate 90 improvements near Snoqualmie Pass, lane construction on Interstate 405 and other projects.

Learn more about the Buy Washington Bonds program at state treasurer’s website, www.tre.wa.gov.

The bonds pay semiannual interest and principal is returned at maturity. The interest payment is exempt from federal income tax. Bonds come in denominations of $5,000.

The bonds have received ratings of AA+ from Fitch and Standard & Poor’s and Aa1 from Moody’s Investor Service.

What is the Mountains to Sound Greenway?

June 28, 2012

Like the matter-of-fact name suggests, the Mountains to Sound Greenway starts amid fried fish counters and souvenir shops along the Seattle waterfront, unfurls along Interstate 90, encompassing cities and forests, and continues on, across the Cascades.

The greenbelt represents decades of effort to protect the natural landscape along the interstate, even as Issaquah and other Eastside cities experienced a population explosion in recent years.

Issaquah Alps Trails Club members spearheaded a 1990 march from Snoqualmie Pass to Puget Sound to attract attention to the proposed greenbelt — a sort of Central Park for Western Washington.

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Local lawmaker Jay Rodne hosts telephone ‘town hall’ meeting

June 12, 2012

State Rep. Jay Rodne invites 5th Legislative District constituents to join a telephone “town hall meeting” June 19.

The discussion is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. and last for 60 minutes. Rodne plans to take constituents’ questions and share views about the recent legislative sessions throughout the discussion.

Call the toll-free number at 1-877-229-8493 and enter the code 15549 at the prompt.

Residents can also contact the North Bend Republican at 360-786-7852 or jay.rodne@leg.wa.gov.

Rodne’s district stretches from Issaquah to the Snoqualmie Pass, and from Sammamish to Maple Valley.

Local lawmaker Jay Rodne hosts telephone ‘town hall’

May 29, 2012

State Rep. Jay Rodne invites 5th Legislative District constituents to join a telephone “town hall meeting” June 19.

The discussion is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. and last for 60 minutes. Rodne plans to take constituents’ questions and share views about the recent legislative sessions throughout the discussion.

Call the toll-free number at 1-877-229-8493 and enter the code 15549 at the prompt.

Residents can also contact the North Bend Republican at 360-786-7852 or jay.rodne@leg.wa.gov.

Rodne’s district stretches from Issaquah to the Snoqualmie Pass, and from Sammamish to Maple Valley.

State extends studded tire deadline to April 16

March 27, 2012

The state Department of Transportation extended the studded tire removal deadline to April 16 in preparation for possible wintry conditions during the Easter holiday weekend.

In Washington, studded tires can be legally used between Nov. 1 and March 31, unless the state extends the removal deadline. Violators face a $124 penalty during other months.

“This year, we have a combination of winter weather still in the forecast for much of the state,” Chris Christopher, director of maintenance operations, said in a statement. “With spring break and Easter right around the corner, we wanted to give drivers the chance to travel before having to take off their studded tires.”

The state transportation agency recommends motorists headed into higher elevations carry chains and use approved traction tires year round.

Officials do not expect to extend the deadline beyond April 16.

Department of Transportation extends studded tire deadline

March 22, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. March 22, 2012

The state Department of Transportation extended the studded tire removal deadline to April 16 in preparation for possible wintry conditions during the Easter holiday weekend.

In Washington, studded tires can be legally used between Nov. 1 and March 31, unless the state extends the removal deadline. Violators face a $124 penalty during other months.

The state transportation agency recommends motorists headed into higher elevations carry chains and use approved traction tires year round.

“This year, we have a combination of winter weather still in the forecast for much of the state,” Chris Christopher, director of maintenance operations, said in a statement. “With spring break and Easter right around the corner, we wanted to give drivers the chance to travel before having to take off their studded tires.”

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