Issaquah, Port of Seattle candidates answer questions

October 13, 2011

Councilman Fred Butler (right) answers a question as council candidates (from left) TJ Filley, Joshua Schaer, Stacy Goodman and Paul Winterstein listen during a candidate forum Thursday. By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 11:30 p.m. Oct. 13, 2011

Candidates for local and regional offices offered prescriptions for counteracting the ailing economy and educating a 21st-century workforce at a forum Thursday.

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 in 40-minute sections organized by race.

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Suzanne Weaver focuses on students as board member

October 11, 2011

During her four years on the job, Issaquah School Board member and Sammamish resident Suzanne Weaver said that the board has done a worthy job of keeping its focus on student achievement and success.

Suzanne Weaver

“It’s work that I enjoy and I want to continue doing it,” Weaver said of serving on the board.

Holding the District 5 seat, Weaver is being challenged in the November election by Issaquah resident Brian Neville.

District 5 includes the northwest corner of Issaquah around Lake Sammamish as well as parts of the city of Sammamish. Although board candidates run for a specific geographic seat, voters from across the district cast ballots for all Issaquah School Board members. Members are elected to four-year terms.

Board members may request pay of $50 per meeting, but the current board has chosen not to accept that money, according to Sara Niegowski, district executive director of communications.

Even as she praised the district for keeping students center stage in a time of massive financial distractions, Weaver said leaders need to deal with those financial hurdles.

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Issaquah School Board delays bond ballot question

October 4, 2011

Officials also shuffle project priorities

After roughly four hours of discussion, the Issaquah School Board voted 4-1 to place a revamped $219 million capital improvement bond package before voters.

But in a decision that came earlier in the course of their regular Sept. 28 meeting, the board voted unanimously to mount the levy in April instead of February as previously planned.

The issue will appear on ballots for an April 17 election. In 2014, voters also may decide a capital improvement levy — not a bond issue — to pay for some items removed from the original proposal for the 2012 bond question.

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Meet candidates for local, regional offices at forum

October 4, 2011

Hear from the candidates for City Council, Issaquah School Board and Port of Seattle at a candidate forum sponsored by The Issaquah Press.

The forum is meant to offer voters a chance to learn about local candidates as the clock ticks down to Election Day. King County Elections is due to mail ballots to voters in late October. The forum starts at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 13 at the King County Library Service Center.

The forum is not a debate. Candidates offer opening statements to the audience and then answer a series of questions from reporters as Publisher Debbie Berto moderates the discussion.

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Issaquah School District’s bond deadline approaches

September 20, 2011

The Issaquah School Board is moving closer to placing a possible $227 million capital improvement bond issue on the ballot in February.

At a special session Sept. 13 and at their regular meeting Sept. 14, school board members spent several hours reviewing the district administration’s recommendations for the bond issue.

The line-by-line study led to discussions about everything from replacing carpeting to installation of aluminum window frames to new roofs.

The board has a Sept. 28 deadline to act on the bond recommendations presented by Superintendent Steve Rasmussen. As discussions moved forward, a proposal to install artificial turf at five schools continued to attract plenty of discussion.

Rasmussen’s plan has the district installing the new turf at a cost of about $1.3 million per school. Board President Jan Woldseth Colbrese said officials need to do a good job of explaining the reasoning behind the field improvements.

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King County Elections certifies August primary results

August 31, 2011

NEW — 3 p.m. Aug. 31, 2011

King County Elections certified the results of the Aug. 16 primary election Wednesday morning.

Overall, voters returned 349,566 ballots of the 1,103,522 elections officials mailed in late July. Turnout reached 32 percent — less than officials estimated in the days before the ballot deadline.

The electorate resoundingly approved — 69 percent to 31 percent — renewing the Veterans and Human Services Levy until 2017.

Organizations operating in Issaquah and the surrounding area, such as Friends of Youth and YWCA of Seattle-King-Snohomish, receive support from the levy.

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Veterans and Human Services Levy appears certain to pass

August 16, 2011

NEW — 8:16 p.m. Aug. 16, 2011

King County voters offered strong support Tuesday for renewing the county Veterans and Human Services Levy until 2017.

The measure, Proposition 1, garnered 66 percent of the vote in the initial round of results King County Elections released just after 8 p.m.

The figure is expected to shift in the coming days as the elections office receives and counts more ballots, but the measure appears certain to pass. The initial tally released Tuesday night encompassed 208,833 ballots.

The levy renewal is projected to generate $100 million through 2017. The funding is split 50-50 among programs for veterans and the neediest residents in King County.

The electorate approved the initial Veterans and Human Services Levy — 5 cents per $1,000 of assessed value — to fund programs for veterans and social service efforts in 2005. The existing levy is due to expire Dec. 31.

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Voters to decide King County veterans-and-human-services levy

August 9, 2011

Measure funds Issaquah programs for teenagers, parents

King County voters decide the future of a county veterans-and-human-services levy soon, and as Election Day nears, recipients of levy dollars demonstrated how the measure impacts Issaquah and other communities.

The electorate approved the initial veterans-and-human-services levy — 5 cents per $1,000 of assessed value — to fund programs for veterans and social service efforts in 2005. The measure, Proposition 1, is up for renewal on the Aug. 16 ballot.

If passed, the levy renewal is projected to generate $100 million through 2017. The funding is split 50-50 among programs for veterans and the neediest residents in King County.

Proposition 1 matches the existing levy and does not include additional taxes. The owner of a home assessed at $340,000 is expected to pay $17 in 2012 if the levy is renewed. (The existing levy is due to expire Dec. 31.)

Proposition 1 receives broad support from human services organizations and advocates for veterans. The measure received unanimous support on the often-contentious council. The county Voters’ Guide does not include any statements against Proposition 1.

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Issaquah School Board candidate drops out

July 5, 2011

Issaquah School Board member Suzanne Weaver faces one less challenger in the race for re-election, after a candidate dropped out of the race.

Initially, the race for the Director District No. 5 seat included Weaver, Joseph Arnaud and Issaquah resident Brian Neville.

In filing information, Arnaud listed a Maple Valley address near Tahoma High School, in the neighboring Tahoma School District. Candidates for the Issaquah School Board must reside in the area they seek to represent.

Candidates could withdraw from local races until June 16.

Weaver, a Sammamish resident, has served on the board since January 2007. Director District No. 5 encompasses North Issaquah and part of Sammamish.

Issaquah School District voters face a choice between Weaver and Neville on the November ballot.

The district includes 98,660 residents in a region from Preston to Newcastle, and from Sammamish to Renton.

Issaquah School Board candidate drops out of race

June 21, 2011

NEW — 10 a.m. June 21, 2011

Issaquah School Board member Suzanne Weaver faces one less challenger in the race for re-election, after a candidate dropped out of the race.

Initially, the race for the Director District No. 5 seat included Weaver, Joseph Arnaud and Issaquah resident Brian Neville.

In filing information, Arnaud listed a Maple Valley address near Tahoma High School, in the neighboring Tahoma School District. Candidates for the Issaquah School Board must reside in the area they seek to represent.

Candidates could withdraw from local races until June 16.

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