Hundreds of backpacks needed for students

July 23, 2014

Let the back-to-school shopping begin!
Wow, everything from erasers to three colors of ink pens, from scissors to notebooks are on the list. Don’t forget a box of Kleenex for the classroom and an apple for the teacher. Read more

Kokanee work group doing important work

July 16, 2014

The Lake Sammamish Kokanee Work Group is one of those little committees that government seems to form all the time.
Typically, these sorts of bodies get together, author an important-sounding report and disband. The report gathers dust, and nothing actually happens.
This one is different. The kokanee work group has certainly done its share of fact-finding, but the facts are being put to use. The little, red fish is recovering, and the efforts of the work group should be applauded. Read more

Use marijuana responsibly

July 9, 2014

No matter how you feel about it, it’s now legal to purchase and smoke it in the state of Washington. (Leave it to officials to sort out the federal vs. state issue, though at this point, no one has announced plans to crack down on people who take a toke.)
And although Sammamish looks likely to ban it in the city, 24 retailers in the Puget Sound area were granted licenses this week by the state Liquor Control Board. Read more

Give credit where it’s due

July 2, 2014

Last week, the Lake Washington School Board discovered that students can get physical education credit for taking a class online, but not for playing sports. This policy has its root in a confusing aspect of state law, which needs to be cleaned up and to be changed to allow for credit for sports. Read more

Congratulations, graduates

June 18, 2014

Since kindergarten, you schlepped books to and from school. You were expected to learn the basics: reading, writing and arithmetic. You hopefully learned how to share, how to make friends, and how to become part of a social and cultural group.
Most importantly, you hopefully learned to be an individual in a sea of sameness, as well as how to be a critical thinker.
For some, high school goes down as the best times of life — the camaraderie, close friendships, being part of a team. Read more

Let reason prevail in homeless regulations

June 11, 2014

The random background checks called for by some residents as a condition of allowing an encampment of homeless people in Sammamish should be anathema in this country.
Simply because a person lives in a tent does not mean they forfeit their citizenship, and citizens have a right protecting them from unreasonable search and seizure.
Fortunately, the City Council seems unlikely to adopt this, one of the more egregious examples of hysteria among the populace. The council should continue to let reason and the rule of law prevail as they deliberate homeless camp regulations. Read more

Be cautious as weather warms up

June 4, 2014

History tells us this weather is a trick. Soon enough, the June gloom will set in and take hold until July 4.
But if this lovely weather holds (and even if it doesn’t) many Western Washingtonians will head outside, braving the cold waters and muddy hiking trails.
Please, don’t let the sun lull you into contentment. As we learned last week on Mount Rainier, even experienced outdoor people with professional guides can get into trouble. Read more

Homeless camp regulations are a good start

May 14, 2014

When Tent City IV showed up a few months ago, people generally freaked out. Some in opposition, and some in support, but no matter the side, emotions ran high.
Afterwards, when it became apparent that this was the first time – and not the last time – the traveling homeless camp would be in the city, the council called a time out to begin figuring out how to handle it. Read more

Candidates wanted, filing dates near

May 7, 2014

There is still time left to consider filing for an elected office  — the ultimate volunteer job.
This year’s elections could give you a chance to effect change on the state and national level.
Every seat in the state House of Representatives is up for election this year, in addition to a number of seats in the state Senate.
For those who prefer elections with a more legal bent, the county’s prosecuting attorney will stand for election this year, along with three seats on the State Supreme Court and three appeals court judgeships.
And for those who’d like to commute to the other Washington, the entire U.S. House of Representatives is on the ballot.
Lots of people will complain about what’s wrong with their town, school, county or country – and about those who are responsible.
But not a lot of people are willing to kiss their private lives goodbye to accept the time-consuming commitment — not only to go through a campaign, but then to attend countless meetings, read the incredible amount of documents you’ll need to understand, and keep in touch with constituents through other community involvement. That’s the often thankless job of an elected official.
But it can also be the most rewarding job you’ll ever take on, helping to guide the community through sound policy, helping citizen voices be heard, and making a difference for countless citizens of today and tomorrow.
Citizens willing to step up to the challenge can file for office May 12-16. Learn more at where you can find out how to file, how to get into the voters’ pamphlets, what the campaign sign rules are, and what information you need for reporters and the public when they come calling.
If you are one of many who decide the task is too big for your life, don’t let the campaign process pass you by. Find a candidate you can support and then do it.
Whether writing a check or doorbelling to spread the word, you can be part of something grand — something we call democracy.

Teachers, Dems at fault for lost waiver

May 1, 2014

The impacts of the state losing its No Child Left Behind waiver are unlikely to be profound locally, but they are still an embarrassment – an embarrassment that could easily have been avoided. Read more

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