As almost everyone knows, there's an important election coming up in November.
What if FDR had never pushed the Rural Electrification Act?
On the morning of June 18, members of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union, Local 1849 (San Juan County employee's union) gathered to meet the San Juan County Council candidates for District 1 and 2. The candidates addressed the local and responded directly to questions from the members.
I met Chris Reykdal in January 2016, when he and five other candidates running for the Superintendent of Public Instruction spoke to a cohort of WSU grad students. I could see then that Chris, hands down, was the front-runner of all the candidates. In May, I was able to witness Chris captivate a room of over a thousand teachers in Spokane.
Bill Watson is a software engineer with 36 years experience with a variety of tech companies, including 20 as manager of small development teams and major business units at Microsoft and elsewhere. He understands how to manage within a budget. Bill also started his own consulting business which he continued after he moved to San Juan Island 10 years ago. He was also a program coordinator for our county's Economic Development Council. Bill is a sharp guy and a quick study.
As full-time San Juan County residents since 1983, we've watched the county grow from sleepy, little laid-back communities to vital location destinations with great eco-tourism appeal. We appreciate the difficult balance between economic survival and potential destruction of what makes the islands so treasured and magical. Bill understands that fragile balance.
I first met Bob Jarman when he was in charge of Pacific Telephone operations here in the county. Those were the days when you actually felt satisfied if you had a problem and called in for service. They actually knew we were on an island and cared about getting your phones fixed. Customer service was a big part of Bob's approach to his job.
Bob Jarman is the obvious choice for County Council District 1. Having known Bob for over twenty years, I feel qualified to make that statement.
The Orcas Medical Center and Orcas Medical Foundation Board have the opportunity right now to make substantive changes – and have the moral responsibility to do so. Island Hospital is canceling its contractual arrangement with OMC, and there is talk of UW Neighborhood Clinics assuming a role. This change mirrors a deeper problem. If there is a constant at OMC, it has been instability: the loss of some of its finest physicians, six or more in 10 years.
As your former elected San Juan County Council Member I strongly recommend retaining Rick Hughes as the Orcas representative on the San Juan County Council. Based upon his thoughtful and balanced approach to county government, Rick Hughes deserves to be re-elected this November.
My family and I spent a lot of time at the library as we planned our move to Orcas in the summer of 2009. Taking advantage of our new library cards, our days were filled with reading lots of books and watching movies and TV series that we'd never heard of before. And I was able to stay connected to my work world because the library's Wi-Fi was free and fast. By summer's end, we knew that a community wise enough to invest in such a friendly and well-equipped library was a place where we could live forever. Seven years later, we're still active Library users, and last December I finished a five-year term as a library trustee.
For the love of learning, for the love of books, and for the love of random human interactions with fellow Orcas Islanders, I am voting yes for the library levy lid lift on our Nov. 8 ballot.
I typically think of summer as the "silly season" given the influx of bodies to our island. Well in this election year, November has assumed that place. It will be so nice to have a few "no brainers" to check on my ballot when it comes in the mail.
I have been having conversations with many community members lately about the phase III bond we will be voting on in February. I bring this up now as we work to decide what will be included on that bond. Repeatedly I have heard islanders comment that "a new weight room isn't necessary, they can just use what they've got, and I'd rather support the arts." Well, as a teacher and coach of arts and athletics respectively in the Orcas High School for 15 years now, I have an inside perspective that I would like every community member to know:
Islands Climate Resilience (ICR) is a group of islanders working to improve our resilience to climate change through a combination of outreach/education and strategic planning. We believe that climate change is happening and that it needs to be addressed both locally and globally.
United Way of San Juan County is inviting 501(c)(3) nonprofits working in Health, Education, and Income Stability to apply for a 2017 grant to make a difference in our island communities. Please go to our website for more information, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Together we can make a difference!
Disappointed with Orcas Fire
Often I have seen letters in the Islands' Sounder that praise the efforts of our EMTs.
In regards to the lengthy article written by David Turnoy, and his reasons voting for Hillary, I wish to add mine for doing the opposite.
Though a co-chair of the committee, I feel the necessity to respond as a individual OPALCO member to opposing commentary which is full of twisted logic and false assumptions.