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- May 10, 2011 at 4:00PM updated May 11, 2013 at 8:56AM
Whidbey Island residents turned in nearly 250 pounds of pills during a one-day, drug take-back program last month. The program, sponsored by the DEA and Whidbey law enforcement agencies, allows people to safely dispose of medication. It’s aimed at reducing the abuse of prescription pills while protecting the environment from potential pollutants.
- May 10, 2011 at 2:57PM
A milestone will be set with this weekend’s celebration of Whidbey Island’s Native American heritage. The Penn Cove Water Festival is marking its 20th consecutive year Saturday, May 14, with activities taking place throughout the Coupeville waterfront.
- May 10, 2011 at 3:00PM updated May 11, 2013 at 8:12AM
Well, at least they wore nice suits. Despite being dressed for success, leaders from Capella Healthcare didn’t have much to celebrate Monday night as the Whidbey General Hospital board of commissioners unanimously rejected a proposal to sell the hospital to the for-profit company. More than 100 skeptical people crammed into the hospital’s conference room and poured out into the hallway to hear the proposal from Capella Healthcare, a company based in Tennessee. The company owns 11 hospitals across the country.
- May 12, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 1:25PM
No matter how you slice it, the Island County general fund levy is low or the lowest when compared to other counties. Dan Jones, the levy analyst for the county assessor’s office, recently gave the county commissioners a PowerPoint presentation to address misconceptions about property taxes and rate comparisons. He looked at tax rates, taxes per capita and total levy amounts.
- May 14, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 3:04PM
The Oak Harbor Arts Commission will hold a special meeting Monday in the hopes of shoring up one of its Pioneer Way art recommendations before it’s vetted by the city council Tuesday night. The group will meet with Clinton bronze artist Georgia Gerber in an attempt to hammer out an actual proposal for a piece on Ireland Street. The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. and will be held at City Hall.
- May 15, 2011 at 10:00AM
Voters have until Tuesday, May 17, to return their ballots on the $50 million bond proposed to fund expansion Whidbey General Hospital. Hospital officials want to build a new wing comprised of 39 single-bed rooms along with space to expand existing hospital programs. The bond requires a 60 percent supermajority to pass.
- May 15, 2011 at 7:00AM
It will cost to use Whidbey Island’s state parks and other state recreational lands beginning this summer. Gov. Christine Gregoire created a financial lifeline for Washington’s parks by signing the Discover Pass legislation into law May 12.
- May 16, 2011 at 10:47AM
Island County voters are staying true to history: Most voters have not yet mailed in their ballots for Tuesday's special election.
- May 17, 2011 at 8:49PM
The first count of ballots in Tuesday's special election suggests that it may be a relatively close call whether or not the $50-million bond proposal to expand Whidbey General hospital will pass. The majority of voters, just over 55.5 percent, cast ballots in favor of the measure, but it requires a 60-percent supermajority to pass. A total of 8,992 votes were in favor, while 7,208 were against the proposed bond.
- May 18, 2011 at 12:00PM updated at 2:13PM
A large turnout on North Whidbey and in Oak Harbor — and lackluster support on Central Whidbey — appears to have doomed a $50 million expansion measure for Whidbey General Hospital, according to an analysis of early precinct returns in the May 17 special election.
- May 19, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 4:29PM
Island County Fair officials announced an immediate closure of the horse arena and equestrian facilities at the county fairgrounds in Langley in light of the EHV-1 outbreak in the Western U.S.
- May 19, 2011 at 11:04AM
The Seattle Men's Chorus will perform at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 4 in a fundraiser that will benefit Whidbey Island's nonprofit, Citizens Against Domestic & Sexual Abuse (CADA).
- May 19, 2011 at 3:55PM
Whidbey Island voters have rejected a $50 million expansion proposal to expand Whidbey General Hospital, according to a second tally of votes on Thursday afternoon.
- May 20, 2011 at 3:03PM
Things did not go well Wednesday afternoon for the attorney representing Island County Commissioner Kelly Emerson and her husband. Superior Court Judge Alan Hancock listened to arguments over a motion seeking to dismiss the Emersons’ lawsuit against the county. The couple’s attorney, Stephen Pidgeon of Everett, argued ardently about Fourth Amendment rights, but his legal analysis didn’t seem to have any sway with the judge.
- May 29, 2011 at 11:00AM
Whidbey Island’s deer are suffering from a type of baldness that can kill.
- May 28, 2011 at 8:00AM updated at 2:16PM
The fate of a new surcharge that would be added to all Washington State Ferries fares, along with legislation aimed at ferry management reform, is now in the hands of the governor.
- May 30, 2011 at 9:00AM
The one-time largest grower of loganberries in the United States is tapping into something new. Workers recently finished installing solar panel arrays at the publicly owned Greenbank Farm. The arrays, which are located between the farm buildings and the alpaca pasture, will produce 25.1 kilowatt hours, which is more than 26,000 kilowatt/hours per year.
- May 28, 2011 at 9:00AM updated at 1:46PM
A one-of-a-kind lawsuit that Island County Commissioner Kelly Emerson and her husband brought against the county, two county employees and a former commissioner was dismissed Friday. The only issues remaining to be resolved are whether the Emersons will appeal and how much the county planning department will fine them.
- May 30, 2011 at 8:29AM
A judge for Island County District Court was injured when he hit a deer on Highway 20 just north of Coupeville Sunday morning.
- Jun 1, 2011 at 2:29PM
Langley Planning Director Larry Kwarsick is running for mayor in the Village by the Sea. Kwarsick announced his candidacy for the mayor's job in Langley on Wednesday. He said he would run as a part-time mayor, for part-time pay.
- Jun 8, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 4:32PM
A new Island County chapter of a group dedicated to protecting property rights held its first meeting last Wednesday night at a Mexican restaurant in Oak Harbor.
- Jun 9, 2011 at 9:00AM
The Island County commissioners’ normally mundane task of appointing people to voluntary boards became a little more action-packed Monday morning. Commissioner Kelly Emerson, the sole Republican on the three-member board, was clamorously unhappy that she didn’t get to name anyone to the Water Resources Advisory Committee.
- Jun 14, 2011 at 1:38PM
Quarterly performance results for Washington State Ferries’ newest vessel, the $76.93 million Chetzemoka, may indicate that they really don’t make them like they used to.
- Jun 15, 2011 at 11:00AM updated Jun 16, 2013 at 8:34AM
A change in state law will allow Island County officials to use a different method to pay for maintenance at county parks, which translate to a return of portable toilets and trash pickup to some South Whidbey parks.
- Jun 15, 2011 at 10:00AM updated Jun 16, 2013 at 8:34AM
One Island County commissioner sued the county’s planning director and now the other two commissioners have given him a raise. Commissioners Angie Homola and Helen Price Johnson voted to raise Planning Director Bob Pederson’s pay grade from an E-28 to an E-29.