Letters to Editor
To Contact the Editor
Monday, May 31st
A Moment Of Remembrance
(Tellytom photo of cannon at Odlin Park on Lopez)
By Dan Post
On Memorial Day, Monday, 31 May 2010, at 3:00 I will be at the Cannon at Odlin Park for a Moment of Remembrance.
I read that the White House created a "Commission on Remembrance" and said to have a "Moment of Remembrance" at 3:00 on Memorial Day. At first I thought (well you know), but then I changed my mind and figured it was a great Idea to go to Odlin Park to the WW1 era Cannon and remember the men from San Juan County who died in WW1 in the line of service.
It is easy to forget in our busy lives why we are a free nation. Some men/women serve and come back to families and friends. Some serve and give there life. It is good to have reminders of these folks and what they have done. The cannon is a reminder of past wars and the human sacrifices that took place. At Odlin Park the cannon means a lot to me and I just do not want to see it moved.
Wherever you are on Memorial Day please just take a moment, or just have a thought, on what the day means. I will be at the Cannon.
Sunday, May 30th
One Very Close Call On Orcas
(Firefighter John Howard at scene of explosion -Patrick Shepler photo)
Orcas Fire Rescue and San Juan County Sheriff Units were called to the area of Bracken Fern and Terrill Beach Road at 12:20PM on Saturday, May 29th for a reported “vehicle fire”. Volunteer Lieutenant, Dave Mowrey was working at Country Corner grocery and heard the explosion.
Saturday, May 29th
Salary Commission To Reconsider Sheriff's Pay Cut
The Chairperson of the Citizen’s Salary Commission, Michael Roger, has called for a special meeting of the Commission next Friday, June 4th, at 9:00 a.m. The purpose of the meeting will be to reconsider the Commission’s actions at its May 20th meeting regarding the Sheriff’s compensation and any other matter that may come before the Commission.
As previously reported, on May 20th the commission voted to cut the Sheriff's pay to bring it into line with the pay of other counties of a similar size. However, as more than one letter to the Editor pointed out, the other counties are not made up of islands.
The meeting will be held in the Council Hearing Room of the Legislative Building, at 55 Second Street, in Friday Harbor, Washington. The meeting will begin at 10:00 a.m. and will adjourn no later than 12:30 p.m.
Friday, May 28th
Bar Association Requests -Again- Council Name Courtroom After Judge Linde
The President of the San Juan County Bar Association has sent a second letter to the County Council requesting the superior courtroom be named the “John O. Linde Superior Courtroom.”
The first request came from county staff to name the courtroom after the County Council held a Moment of Silencein honor of Judge Linde in December of 2009, and a letter the from the Bar Association was sent January 29th of this year, also asking for the memorial action to honor Judge Linde for being “not only our first superior court judge, being appointed by the governor and then elected by the voters, but he also served in that courtroom for 22 years as a District Court judge.”
Two County Awards For Wastewater Treatment
Most people don't think about what goes on behind the scenes to protect our water, but the state Department of Ecology does because it regulates wastewater plant operations. When the agency sees perfect compliance at the plants, it recognizes the achievement with annual Outstanding Wastewater Treatment Plant Awards.
Last year, 87 of the state's wastewater treatment plants had perfect track records. Two of those awards went to San Juan County systems.
Wednesday, May 26th
Boy That Colton Kid Is A Pain
(Photo detail from a series of security camera photos)
Various news outlets are reporting that Colton Harris Moore, aka the” Barefoot Burglar” may be on Whidbey island. While there is no conclusive evidence -yet- to support the reports, there has been a boat stolen, then abandon, and given that just a few weeks ago there was house burglary and a boat stolen from the south end of San Juan Island, and it easy to see why there is speculation it was Moore who is involved in the theft of a boat on Whidbey.
Council Drills PSP Staff -Then Asks PSP To Approve A Local Committee
(L to R: Joe Ryan and Roma Call)
The County Council approved a resolution on Tuesday that requests the ( Puget Sound Partnership (PSP) approve a proposed Action Agenda Oversight Committee to work with the PSP to establish priorities and local accountability for the implementation of a PSP Action Agenda for the San Juans.
But two of the Puget Sound Partnership’s (PSP) top staff members responsible for the Local Implementation of the “Ecosystem Recovery” of San Juan County found themselves on the hot seat Tuesday when the Council asked questions -and expressed disapproval- of a recent state audit of the PSP.
Attorney Joe Ryan, and Roma Call, the Ecosystem Recovery Director & Coordinator respectively, for the “San Juan Action Area” sat down with the County Council to respond to questions about a proposed County resolution that would authorize a “Local Integrating Organization” (LIO).
Tuesday, May 25th
Judge Stewart Andrew to Seek Re-election
Judge Stewart Andrew will seek re-election to a fourth term as the District Court Judge in San Juan County. “I am asking the citizens of San Juan County to allow me to serve them for one more term.”
Judge Andrew graduated from the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis in 1972, and served as an officer aboard Navy and Coast Guard ships during the 1970’s. He received his JD in 1980 from the School of Law at Golden Gate University in San Francisco. Admitted to the California Bar in 1980, he worked as an Assistant City Attorney in Livermore and San Rafael, California, until 1985.
Transient Orca May Be Killing Sea Lions
( Jason Wood of the Whale Museum and the Beam Reach class with one of the stranded Steller sea lions)
Sea lions are turning up dead, and there is evidence the killers may be, killer whales. More specifically, transient orca are suspected as the culprits, as opposed to the resident orcas that live in our waters.
Joseph Gaydos of the SeaDoc Society told the Island Guardian they “have seen signs suggesting that marine mammal-eating killer whales, might be killing more than they can eat.”
Just in the last month three Steller sea lions and one California sea lion have been found dead from Puget Sound up to and including the San Juan Islands.
Monday, May 24th
The Feds Want A Plan For Their SJC Land
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is proposing a Resource Management Plan for Its 1,000+ acres located in San Juan County, and the County Council will hold it’s first discussion Tuesday (5-25-10) ( agenda) on the process, and what it could mean for the county.
The BLM public lands in the San Juan Archipelago have over the years increased, but the BLM does not have a management plan for them.
BLM’s land use plans control what happens to the lands, by whom, and when, but the underlying purpose of the plan is to “provide opportunities for energy (renewable and non-renewable) development, to include associated transmission lines and pipelines, it must also provide protection for other resources, such as visual, cultural, and habitat values. “
Leadership SJ Islands Class VI Graduates
(L to R: Back row: Steve Hushebeck, Thomas Sandstrom, Jim Hooper, Mikial Denker, Caitlan Parker, Susan Key; Middle Row: Krista Bouchey, Patsy Haber, Rebecca Hillman, Melina Lagois, Sam Jacobsen; Front Row: Sara Farish, Vernadel Peterson, Joy Goldberg, Tanja Williamson, Jesica DeHart, Karrie Cooper, Kathleen Foley )
Leadership San Juan Islands 2010 announced the graduation of Class VI on May 21. Graduates presented their proposed service projects and received certificates of completion.
Service projects are a component of Leadership San Juan Islands’ program where each participant agrees to “give back” 100 hours of service to the community. Previous projects have included service on Town Council, Island Rec Board, and community forums relative to leadership, transportation, and sustainability.
Friday, May 21st
Sheriff's Pay Cut By $10K, $5K Raise For PA
Sheriff Bill was surprised when he first learned the San Juan County Citizens’ Salary Commission (Commission) had included a review of his salary on the agenda for their next meeting. That meeting was held on Thursday, and they voted to reduce the Sheriff's salary by over $10,000.00 a year; but bumped the County Prosecutor's salary up by $5,000.00
Sheriff Bill Cumming did not cite the possibility of a cut in his salary as one of the reasons he decided to retire, but it may very well have entered into his decision making process.
Documentary Film Festival Inaugural Kicked-off Sunday
(Screen shot of Three Flags Over Everest)
The San Juan Island International Documentary Film Festival will hosted its inaugural Kick-off Reception with Emmy award winning film maker Laszlo Pal on Sunday, May 23rd, at 3:00 p.m. at the San Juan Island Yacht Club.
“This festival will draw visitors from all over the world to our islands,” Pal states. Pal’s award winning Three Flags over Everest, the record breaking expedition of the 1990 Mt. Everest International Peace Climb, will be shown. An overview of the festival and future events, as well as opportunities to volunteer will be offered by event organizers.
Created by the San Juan Island Rotary Club, the Festival will be held April 1st--3rd, 2011 and present noteworthy documentary films that entertain, provoke thought, and promote respect for the vast array of different opinions and perspectives.
SeaDoc Octopus Award For Support Of Ecosystem
(Will & Eleanor Parks, Doug Charles of Compass wines with the Todd Spalti sculpture)
Local wine store receives the SeaDoc Society Octopus Award for its efforts to ensure the health of marine wildlife and their ecosystems.
Thursday May 13, 2010, Orcas Island, Washington. Compass Wines, under proprietors Will Parks and Doug Charles, received the SeaDoc Society’s coveted Octopus Award. This award recognizes groups or individuals who go above and beyond to help the SeaDoc Society accomplish its mission to ensure the health of marine wildlife and their ecosystem.
Thursday, May 20th
Help The Disabled Vote - Volunteers Needed
The state legislature has found that the elimination of polling places resulting from the transition to vote by mail creates barriers that restrict the ability of many voters with disabilities from achieving the independence and privacy in voting provided by the accessible voting devices required under the Help America to Vote Act.
EMS Week Honors EMTs Proudly Serving the Community
"Anytime. Anywhere. We’ll be there” is the theme for the annual Emergency Services Week in May, proclaimed by the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) and, we might add: the San Juan County Council.
EMS Week salutes the excellent services provided every day, under often daunting circumstances, by the 40 EMTs and paramedics of San Juan Island EMS and their 750,000 colleagues nationwide.
Wednesday, May 19th
County Asks Town To Pay For Cover Of SJI Tipping Floor
The cover over the tipping floor of the SJI transfer station may be going back up, but this time it will be the Town that pays for it. At least that is what the County Council would like to see happen.
Some progress was made toward a partial resolution of the non-conformity of the SJI transfer station on Tuesday when the County Council voted to send a letter to the Town of Friday Harbor, noting that the Town had indicated a willinness “ to consider… financing the covered structure..” needed to operate the transfer station.
That would be the roof that PW (SJC Public works) removed, and now has designed a new one to cover the tipping floor.
DOE Considers Allowing Reclaiming Of Wastewater (Not from septic fields)
It has been a long time coming, but the The Washington Department of Ecology (DOE) is holding public workshops across the state to discuss new regulations for reclaimed water.
"Reclaimed water" in this context is code for treated effluent from septic systems. The key word is "treated," which means "water derived in any part from a wastewater with a domestic wastewater component that has been adequately and reliably treated, so that it can be used for beneficial purposes,"
Tuesday, May 18th
State Audit Slams Ruckelshaus & Puget Sound Partnership
The State Auditor’s first report on the Puget Sound Partnership’s (Partnership) accountability and compliance with state laws and regulations and the policies and procedures of the Partnership was recently completed, and not all is well -to be kind- with the leadership of the Partnership..
As one local observer of the Partnership put it, “[the] Partnership, the WA State agency created in 2007 to clean up Puget Sound, was lambasted last week in a scathing State Auditor's Report.”
The audit concentrated on two “identified conditions significant enough to report as findings:
The Puget Sound Partnership circumvented state contracting laws, exceeded its purchasing authority and made unallowable purchases with public funds.
The Puget Sound Partnership failed to enforce the terms of its agreements with a foundation it created, incurring costs without clear public benefit.”
In addition to the stated lack of financial controls, in 2008 the Partnership created The Foundation for Puget Sound as a “private, non-profit” group to receive donations “promoting and supporting activities that further the public purposes of the Puget Sound Partnership..”; spending just under a quarter million dollars to hire a private law firm “to establish the Foundation.”
Ruckelshaus was listed as Vice President in the registration of the Foundation with the Sectary of State.
The Partnership paid into the Foundation a total of $167,341.00 for consulting and legal fees, including nearly $20,000.00 for a “documentary film” for public television. After paying to set up how the Foundation and the Partnership would work together, the audit states the Partnership then “failed to enforce the terms of its agreements with the Foundation.”
The Partnership was back-and-forth on awarding matching funds to the Foundation, but ended up giving nearly $90,000.00 to the Foundation without any match by the Foundation. Based on recent research into the Foundation, it appears it may no longer be active.
Here are some of the highlights of the low points of how the Partnership has been spending millions of state and federal money, and conducting itself in terms of enforcing controls on expenditures, some of which the audit states may have no direct or “clear public benefit”:
The audit reports that the Partnership structured the dollar amounts of some contracts “to avoid advertising or following competitive procurement requirements,” and paid more than necessary for some of the services and goods it received:
* Overpaying unapproved vendors by 50% for computer systems. “Hewlitt Packard or Dell would cost $25,000 to $28,000. Apple Macintosh costs were determined to be $42,000;” but the “Apple Macintosh hardware and software is not compatible with statewide information systems..”
* $300 per hour open-scope consultancies awarded without competitive application or paper trails
* $2,474 in catering for a private reception in direct violation of state regulations
* $8,600 for one digital camera for staff use.
* $6,853 for 120 monogrammed fleece vests, and $5,044 for 30 monogrammed jackets.
* Thousands more for custom lip balm and personalized, engraved mahogany gift boxes containing bottles of sparkling apple cider
* $10,000 for a membership to the Cascade Land Conservancy; Illegally gifting government resources to private and unknown individuals
* Overpaying staff by 20 to 40%, with average annual salary last year $20,000 more than at the state's other natural -resource agencies- $75,000 a year at the Partnership versus $53,000 at others.
As the summary of the report states, The audit of the Partnership is only a snapshot,the Auditor’s office does not “examine every transaction, activity or area. Instead, the areas examined were those representing the highest risk of noncompliance, misappropriation or misuse.”
The Partnership responded to the audit, stating the Partnership “fully recognizes that improvement in the Partnership’s compliance and accountability mechanisms must be strengthened. Even prior to your audit, agency staff has been directed to establish the proper procedures and accountability mechanisms that have been recommended”.
And the Auditor then responded to the Partnership that they “appreciate the Partnership’s commitment to resolving the identified weaknesses. We will follow up with the Partnership at a later date to determine what corrective actions have been taken.”
Monday, May 17th
Council Votes To Fund Orcas Rec If Necessary
San Juan and Lopez tax payers will lend a helping hand to the Orcas Rec summer program this year. The County Council voted unanimously last Tuesday to pass a motion by Council Chair Richard Fralick to fund the Orcas program, if necessary -if the new Orcas Rec district cannot foot the bills alone. This would be a partial "put back" of funding that had been eliminated from the 2009 county budget.
San Juan voters approved a recreation district with a San Juan Island funding source for it some years ago, but Orcas voters only last November approved a district, however it did not include a funding source.
Sunday, May 16th
FH Joins International Protest For Lolita
(About a dozen showed up to support “Free Lolita.”)
The public was asked to join an International Day of Peaceful Protest in Friday Harbor, Saturday, May 15th,at the bottom of Spring Street near the waterfront to show support for The last surviving Southern Resident orca left in captivity, Lolita; who has for the last 40 years lived in a tank 20 feet at its deepest point and 35 feet across at the Miami Seaquarium. Lolita is about 21 feet long and 7,000 pounds.
Lolita was born in the wild around 1966 and captured in Penn Cove off Whidbey Island at the age of about 4! Her mother is thought to be L25, Ocean Sun, estimated to be born in 1928, and still alive in L Pod today!! Ken Balcolm and Howard Garrett of Orca Network have developed a plan to return her to her home waters, (our home waters, too)! The plan would allow her to reside in a generously sized bay pen, and be taken care of while slowly being re-acclimated to her natural waters.
She would receive professional care in a natural cove near her family’s foraging grounds. In time, she would be given the chance to reunite with her family should she want to. The goal of the Free Lolita movement is to convince the owner of the Miami Seaquarium,it is past time to “retire Lolita”.
The intent is for her to get used to her natural surroundings while being able to interact with her family Southern Residents L-pod If she adapts well and chooses to do so, she may eventually be released to rejoin her pod.
If for any reason she decides to return to the bay pen, she will be taken care of by humans for the rest of her life while still being able to live in a spacious, natural environment in close proximity to her wild relatives.
Only a small hurdle remains in the way of Lolita’s retirement: Miami Seaquarium owners Arthur and Andrew Hertz. Regardless of announcements to build a new tank for Lolita, the Miami Seaquarium has instead focused its improvement projects in a different direction, by building a completely new facility called Dolphin Harbor, to take advantage of the lucrative “swim with the dolphins” craze.
Despite her importance to Seaquarium marketing, the focus is has been turned to the dolphin swim program, rather than aging Lolita. Since her brutal capture in 1970, she has been kept in a tank that is illegal by the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) standards for size requirements. Lolita has worked 40 years in the Miami Seaquarium tank.
Saturday, May 15th
Three Who Would Be Sheriff
(Candidates for Sheriff: Johnson, Menjivar and Nou )
The field now includes three law enforcement officers who are running for the position of Sheriff of San Juan County after Sheriff Bill Cumming said he would not seek another term .
The First to announce was Brent Johnson, quickly followed by Felix Menjivar, both of San Juan Island, and now Rob Nou of Lopez has announced that he too will be a candidate for Sheriff. Following below, in the order of their release, are the three official announcements of the candidates.
No Grace Period On Cell Phone Enforcement
Laws prohibiting texting and requiring hands-free devices **took effect in 2008, but have been considered secondary violations. Officers had to witness some other infraction in order to make a traffic stop. The new designation as primary offenses mean police can stop drivers for a texting or cell phone violation alone.
The law goes into effect as traffic offenses on June 10. The fine for a violation is $124.
Friday, May 14th
Support For Free Lolita Movement Saturday
(The tank Lolita lives in -screen capture photo From My Space)
The last surviving Southern Resident Orca left in captivity, Lolita, lives in a tank 20 feet at its deepest point and 35 feet across. Lolita is about 21 feet long and 7,000 pounds. Lolita has beenheld for 40 years at the Miami Seaquarium.
The public is asked to join an International Day of Peaceful Protest in Friday Harbor, Saturday, May 15th, 9:30am-12noon, at the bottom of Spring Street near the waterfront.
Humpback Entangled In Crab Pot Gear
(Google map of Destruction Island)
At 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Apr. 12, the U.S. Coast Guard was notified by a fisherman of an entangled humpback whale off of Destruction Island, Wash.
The Coast Guard notified the NOAA Northwest Marine Mammal Stranding Network. Network members spoke with the fisherman and were able to get additional information about the sighting and condition of the animal.
Thursday, May 13th
Still No Action On Solid Waste Issues
In response to a demand letter from DOE (Related Story) that either the County show evidence that steps are being taken to resolve non-conforming conditions at the SJI Transfer Station, or close it, the County Council on Tuesday once again held a meeting with Joh Shannon, Director of Public works, to discuss a possible way to extend the DOE deadline.
At the last meeting, Shannon had suggested a temporary solution of “drop boxes” that might be counted by DOE as evidence of moving toward compliance.
Should Cannon In Odlin Park Remain?
(Tellytom photo of cannon at Odlin Park on Lopez)
PRESS RELEASE - The San Juan County Parks department will shortly enter the final design phase for the Odlin Park Renovation and one issue which remains to be decided is the placement or disposition of the 155 mm WWI/WWII era cannon which has resided on park land for several decades.
In recent years, three different Military Historical Organizations have expressed interest in the cannon that now sits in the park on Lopez Island.
Wednesday, May 12th
Council Surprised By Legal Power Of Action Agenda
The County Council met on Tuesday to discuss and adopt a Resolution that would give the county council a membership on a Local Integrating Organization (LIO) that is being set up by the PSP ( Puget Sound Partnership for the purpose of implementing the Action Agenda of the PSP.
As the meeting got under way, Councilmember Rich Peterson told the Council he had serious concerns about how much power the law was providing the PSP.
Some on the council may have been surprised to learn the County could potentially have funding cut off by the Governor if the County was found “substantial noncompliance with the action agenda.” The law states the County could be found to be “ineligible for state financial assistance until the substantial noncompliance is remedied.”
Budget & Wages Increase In State
(Graphic by Wa Policy Center)
Thousands of jobs were lost in Washington in 2008 and ‘09’, but according to the state Employment Security Department (ESD), the “high-paying and minimum-wage jobs, and the median wage all increased.”
And the state budget increased too.
According to the state Legislative Evaluation and Accountability Program Committee (LEAP), the supplemental budget that Governor Gregoire recently sighed continues to increase.
But even in the recession, both high-paying and minimum-wage jobs increased in the state.
Tuesday, May 11th
$26K For Senior Rental Subsidies Proposed
The County Council is expected to award some financial help on Tuesday for extremely low income seniors in the county.
The SJC Housing Bank Commission (HBC) has reviewed and recommended to the council the approval of five rental subsidy applications.
County code requires the HBC to "review grant and loan applications and make recommendations for the award of grants and loans."
Concerns On Slime Mold Disease -Study Of Local Eelgrass Underway
(Photo credit: estuaries.gov)
Dr. Dan Martin, a seagrass scientist from the University of South Alabama, has been hired by SeaDoc Society as a visiting scientist to help conduct an important study on the impact of disease on local eelgrass populations.
In the 1930's, a wasting disease caused by the marine slime mold Labyrinthula is thought to have killed nearly 90% of all eelgrass on the East Coast from Canada to North Carolina.
Monday, May 10th
- EDITORIAL -
Planning Commission Being Ignored?
The County Council will hold a Special meeting on Tuesday to discuss, among other things (Full Agenda ), a letter from the Planning Commission (PC) that complains they do not fully “understand what role you would like us to play, and tell us how we can help you in your work rather than appearing to be an unnecessary stumbling block.”
The PC’s role is, in the most general terms, as stated in their March 5, 2010 letter to the Council: “…advisory to you and to the planning staff.” However, they also stated they believe their recommendations to the County Council are too frequently no more than an “academic exercise,” resulting in the commission members feeling “redundant.”
If indeed the members of the PC are out of step with the county council -then the question becomes not only what the PC is asking -“what can be done about it”- but the more basic question of: Why are they out of step?
Sunday, May 9th
Road Work Season In SJC
Public Works has sent out a "Gravel Trucks Alert" that road work preparations are under way; and the Town of Friday Harbor warns that a sewer line replacements will affect travel near the Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Guard Street and Tucker Avenue will be closed Monday from 8 a.m until -possibly as late- as 7:00 pm. If bed rock is hit, it may take longer. There will be detour signs posted
Saturday, May 8th
Spring Is Springing
Master Gardener's held a plant sale at the Mullis Community Senior Center Sunday. A large crowd showed up to purchase vegetable starts, and perennials. Tomatoes, herbs, squash, basil, were but some of the plants offered -Just in time for Mother's Day giving.
The WSU Extension Program has a rich history, beginning in 1973, and spreading to the majority of counties in Washington to many states in the United States. The Program trains volunteers to be community educators who provide science-based information on horticulture and environmentally sound gardening practices. The annual spring sale helps to raise funds for the programs
Thursday, May 6th
Brent Johnson Will Run For Sheriff
(Brent Johnson -IG file photo)
The Lead Detective in the San Juan County Sheriff's office has announced his intention to file for the office of Sheriff. Detective Johnson has lived in the county for close to eight years, and has been active in volunteer groups, ranging from the fire department to a current position as chair of the County Veterans Advisory Board.
So far Johnson and Sheriff Deputy Felix Menjivar are the only two who have stated they will run for Sheriff, but others could join the race. In other races, Bob Myhr; Rich Peterson; Randy Gaylord; Milene Henley Patty Miller, and Joan White have all stated they will seek election to a San Juan County office.
FH Youth Boxing Fundraiser Dinner
The World Amateur Boxing Championships (WABC) will be held this year in July, and a few young boxers from San Juan County would like to attend the event.
To raise money to attend the event, the Friday Harbor Youth Boxing club will be serving Friday May 7TH @ 6:00PM at the Masonic Lodge. We are talking dinner here: Chicken Alfredo Pasta, Caesar Salad, Garlic Cheese Bread And Homemade Brownies with Ice Cream -there will also be a silent auction during dinner-.
Green Summer of 2010
The IMA The San Juan Islands Museum of Art & Sculpture Park (IMA), hosted a ‘Green Summer 2010’ luncheon Monday, May 3rd, at the Community Theater’s, Gubelman room. The luncheon was to announce IMA’s upcoming summer exhibition, Green: ON THE EDGE, a juried, visual art competition, with artists participating from Washington, Oregon and British Columbia.
Wednesday, May 5th
Macdonald Resigns From SWAC
Mike MacDonald has sent the following letter to the SJC Solid Waste Advisory Committee chairman.
The SWAC has 12 members, appointed by the County Council to provide advice and recommendation to the County on solid waste activities and concerns. In his letter resigning his appointment to the committee, Macdonald ends his letter with a "call for structural reform based on civic integrity":
No Roof For Now, Self-Haul To Drop Box Is The Plan For SJI Transfer Station
(DOE photo of drop box at SJI dump)
The SJ County Council held a Special Meeting on Tuesday (5-410) and came up with a new plan for the San Juan Island transfer station.
San Juan residents will see little change as they depose of garbage, but contractors and other haulers of debris in dump trucks may be limited, or denied, the use of the dump under a new proposal by the County Council.
Under the new plan, self-haulers will no longer dump or throw their garbage on the “tipping floor,” but carry it to a railing and drop it into boxes that will be hauled off island.
Tuesday, May 4th
Sheriff Bill Decides To Retire
Sheriff Bill Cumming has announced that he will retire his badge at the end of his term. He issued the following statement: "After much reflection and many discussions with my family I have decided that I will retire from my position of sheriff at the end of my current term. It has been my distinct honor to serve as the Sheriff of San Juan County for these past twenty four years. I wish to thank all the citizens for the trust you placed in my leadership for these past six terms.
DOE To County: Show Us The Progress
"Without further evidence the tip [sic] floor will be covered, it is unlikely Ecology will concur with another variance after the expiration of this one." -Peter Christiansen of DOE
One has to wonder if Public Works Director Joh Shannon had it to do all over again back in 2005, would he (1) go to the Town of Friday Harbor and ask them to inspect the roof or the tipping floor at the SJI transfer station, or (2) would he have simply applied for a building permit to fix or replace the roof, instead of removing it, and then not replace it?
1st Annual Photo Contest for Resident Orca
The Whale Museum is holding its 1st Annual Photo Contest for its Southern Resident Orca Calendar. The 16-month collectible calendar is for 2010-2011.
The photo contest is open to all and runs through May 16. Photos of Southern Resident orcas are invited as long as they were taken following the Be Whale Wise Guidelines and Washington State Regulations. The calendar printing is sponsored by Eagle Home Mortgage.
Monday, May 3rd
Dana Lyons Concert For Whale Museum
Singer/songwriter Dana Lyons comes to Friday Harbor on May 3 for a show to benefit The Whale Museum. Best known for his signature song "Cows With Guns," Dana is on tour to share his new album "Three Legged Coyote" around Washington State.
He has been called a current-day Pete Seeger by the Bellingham Weekly, and an out-of-control Johnny Cash by The Western Front.
Sunday, May 2nd
2010 Children’s Festival At Fairgounds
(Vera Schoultz helped into life preserver by mother Alisa as SJI Sailing Foundation President Pete Risser observes)
"Space Odyssey" was the theme for the 2010 free Children’s Festival where over 30 community groups gathered to provide fun and educational activities for kids of all ages. Click HERE for more photos
Saturday, May 1st
SJI Chamber Celebrated Business at First Annual Banquet
(Award to Valmark, Inc. (l to r) Vernadel Peterson, Executive Director SJI Chamber; Wes Corey, Manager of King’s Market; John Stimpson, Manager of Market Place; Julie Corey, President SJI Chamber)
Across the nation numerous Chambers of Commerce celebrate the success of the businesses in their community with an Annual Awards Ceremony. On April 29 the San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce had its First Annual Banquet to recognize and award businesses.