Laura Guido

Island’s first behavioral health stabilization facility discussed

Representatives from Island County recently presented plans for the island’s first crisis stabilization center and sub-acute detox facility. The center, meant to provide services for… Continue reading

A Langley police officer holds a syringe he found. County officials recently sat down with attorneys to discuss the possibility of joining a multidistrict civil lawsuit against opioid manufacturers for the damage the opioid crisis has caused local communities. Whidbey News-Times file photo

County weights joining opioid lawsuit

The Board of Island County Commissioners held a round-table discussion last week to consider whether to join multi-district litigation against prescription opioid manufacturers. The discussion… Continue reading

A Langley police officer holds a syringe he found. County officials recently sat down with attorneys to discuss the possibility of joining a multidistrict civil lawsuit against opioid manufacturers for the damage the opioid crisis has caused local communities. Whidbey News-Times file photo

County considers housing goals, policies

Planning and community development staff recently presented the draft housing goals and policies to the Island County Board of Commissioners and the planning commission. The… Continue reading

County holding workshops on Freeland development regs

Members of the public will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback about draft Freeland development regulations throughout April and May. The new… Continue reading

Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group
                                A young deceased whale washed up Tuesday on West Beach. After examining the body, researchers believe it died from malnutrition.

Young whale washes up on Whidbey Island shore

Visitors to West Beach on North Whidbey this week may have noticed a rather large, and eventually odoriferous, addition to its shores. A deceased female… Continue reading

Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group
                                A young deceased whale washed up Tuesday on West Beach. After examining the body, researchers believe it died from malnutrition.

Whidbey hosting its own Comicon April 7

This one’s for the cosplayers, gamers, comic book readers and sci-fi/fantasy enthusiasts. Casual and hardcore fans of “geek culture” alike will have the opportunity to… Continue reading

WEAN digs into asphalt mounds

In an effort to address multiple truckloads of crushed asphalt piled on a property on South Whidbey’s Midvale Road, a local environmental group has been… Continue reading

Pacific Rim Institute partnering with new 23-year-old sheep farmer

News that the CEO of Pacific Rim Institute wanted to partner with young farmers came at a serendipitous time for Elijah Iles, 23. The Freeland… Continue reading

SVC employee challenging Hayes for seat

An Oak Harbor resident is challenging incumbent Rep. Dave Hayes, R-Camano Island, for the state House representative of the 10th district. Dave Paul, vice president… Continue reading

Habitat taking over Saratoga Community Housing

After witnessing Saratoga Community Housing’s declining effectiveness, Habitat for Humanity of Island County is taking over the agency. “They just didn’t have the staff to… Continue reading

Community weaves together fundraiser after fiber theft

In late February, Lydia Christiansen and her husband Alan woke up to a small business owner’s worst nightmare. A trailer carrying most of their inventory… Continue reading

Staff from Island County Human Services gave a presentation on housing issues and homelessness in the county to the Planning Commission Monday. The department has been able to help over 400 households with its Housing Support Center since it opened in August 2016, but there are still more than 400 households waiting for assistance, largely due to the lack of affordable housing. Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group

Point in Time count shows 170 without permanent housing

Over 170 people were counted as either unsheltered or in temporary housing during the annual Point in Time Count in January, according to a presentation… Continue reading

Staff from Island County Human Services gave a presentation on housing issues and homelessness in the county to the Planning Commission Monday. The department has been able to help over 400 households with its Housing Support Center since it opened in August 2016, but there are still more than 400 households waiting for assistance, largely due to the lack of affordable housing. Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group

Developer appealing Hearings Board decision

The developer Wright’s Crossing, LLC filed a motion to reconsider Thursday after the Growth Management Hearings Board dismissed its appeal. In December, Wright’s Crossing submitted… Continue reading

Island County Commissioner Rick Hannold speaks at a work session meeting Wednesday. After a request for more funding from the Freeland Water and Sewer District, he said at the meeting he has “no confidence whatsoever” in the district and its effort to put a sewer system in Freeland. Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News-Times

Island County commissioners lacking faith in Freeland sewer board

The Island County Board of Commissioners responded with skepticism Wednesday to a request for funding from the Freeland Water and Sewer district. The sewer district’s… Continue reading

Island County Commissioner Rick Hannold speaks at a work session meeting Wednesday. After a request for more funding from the Freeland Water and Sewer District, he said at the meeting he has “no confidence whatsoever” in the district and its effort to put a sewer system in Freeland. Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News-Times
Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group
                                Deputy Marshal Leif Haugen reads to second grader Colby Terry in the library of Coupeville Elementary School. Haugen is part of the recently launched “Bigs with Badges” program at Big Brother Big Sisters that pairs children in the community with law enforcement officers.

Bigs with Badges: Connecting with kids

On a typical Tuesday afternoon, students and staff at Coupeville Elementary School might witness a rather unusual sight— fully uniformed Deputy Marshal Leif Haugen racing… Continue reading

Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group
                                Deputy Marshal Leif Haugen reads to second grader Colby Terry in the library of Coupeville Elementary School. Haugen is part of the recently launched “Bigs with Badges” program at Big Brother Big Sisters that pairs children in the community with law enforcement officers.

New Island County contract brings more WSU programs

As of March 1, Washington State University Extension, Island County will serve as an independent contractor with Island County instead of a department. The change… Continue reading

South End getting first drug treatment center

Freeland will soon be home to the first medicaid-funded substance use disorder treatment facility on South Whidbey. American Behavioral Health Systems is planning to open… Continue reading

Knox Shannon, 8, looks out the window of his new bedroom in the house built by Habitat for Humanity. Island County is set to implement fee changes that would result in savings for the organization, and other developers, in the plan review stage of receiving building permits. Photo by Patricia Guthrie/ Whidbey News-Times

New building permit fees should reduce costs in county

The Board of Island County Commissioners is set to vote on building permit fee changes, including stock plan review fees that will result in savings… Continue reading

Knox Shannon, 8, looks out the window of his new bedroom in the house built by Habitat for Humanity. Island County is set to implement fee changes that would result in savings for the organization, and other developers, in the plan review stage of receiving building permits. Photo by Patricia Guthrie/ Whidbey News-Times
Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group
                                The Kettles trails were acquired by Island County in 1996 using funds from the conservation futures program. The county is now accepting applications for the 2018 award cycle, but a low fund balance may limit the acceptance of new projects.

No guarantees for awarding of conservation futures funds

The Island County Conservation Futures Program is now accepting applications from eligible organizations for acquisition projects or maintenance and operations projects. However, Island County Commissioners… Continue reading

Laura Guido/Whidbey News Group
                                The Kettles trails were acquired by Island County in 1996 using funds from the conservation futures program. The county is now accepting applications for the 2018 award cycle, but a low fund balance may limit the acceptance of new projects.
Planning Commission member Tracy Gilroy speaks during a meeting on Monday. The commission voted to approve amendments made in response to a settlement agreement between Island County and the Whidbey Island Environmental Action Network. Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News-Times

Forest practices changes heading to board

Island County Planning Commission voted Monday to amend code related to forest practices in response to a settlement agreement filed with the Whidbey Island Environmental… Continue reading

Planning Commission member Tracy Gilroy speaks during a meeting on Monday. The commission voted to approve amendments made in response to a settlement agreement between Island County and the Whidbey Island Environmental Action Network. Photo by Laura Guido/Whidbey News-Times