Opinion

Cheryl Shaw is executive director of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure  – Puget Sound.

There is no time to lose | Guest column

Every week, more than 100 women in Washington state are diagnosed with breast cancer.

  • Oct 19th, 2012
Cheryl Shaw is executive director of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure  – Puget Sound.

Reporter’s notebook: losing family to cancer

She wore red lipstick and her neck was often adorned with a colorful scarf. She was an artist who painted watercolors with scenes of vibrant bouquets and shorelines of calm waters. She loved martinis and silver jewelry from her travels to Mexico and Europe. She was known for her witty charm, bright smile and a cigarette constantly held between her fingers.

Understanding CRC prop. 1 | Guest column

Auditor Milene Henley released the following statement about the charter review proposals. It is not an approval or rejection of Proposition 1. Its purpose is to clarify the statutory electoral process.

  • Oct 16th, 2012

Pete Rose responds to letters to the editor | Guest column

In May of this year before a final vote by the Charter Review Commission and before I left the county, Gordy Petersen delivered his opinion about why I may have left San Juan County, calling it my “dream job” and making other dreamy hypothecations.

  • Oct 15th, 2012

Legacies left behind and the importance of Initiative 2012-4 | Guest column

Our generation inherited a world contaminated with PCBs. They were considered as safe as mineral oil and table salt. PCBs were used in hundreds of applications from insulating fluids, plasticizers in paints, pesticide extenders, caulking, adhesives, to carbonless copy paper.

  • Oct 11th, 2012

Reject CRC Prop. 1 and 2 on ballot | Editorial

In 2005, voters endorsed, by 63 percent, the “Basic” Home Rule Charter and by 55 percent, an amendment to the charter that divided the county into six legislative districts, created a council of six part-time legislators, and established district-only elections for each of those part-time posts.

  • Oct 9th, 2012

Don’t let fellow islanders go hungry | Editorial

It’s our most basic human need: food. For most of us, we can walk into the store or stroll through the farmers’ market and pick up whatever we like.

  • Oct 5th, 2012

CRC member says ‘no’ to changes | Guest column

We have all read many letters about the proposals of the CRC to amend the County Charter.

  • Oct 4th, 2012
A Chinese coal carrier leaked 4 tons of oil after striking Australian reefs in April last year.

Scoping process for coal export terminal has started | Guest Column

The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers is leading the collaboration with Whatcom County Planning and Development Services and WA Department of Ecology to prepare a join Environmental Impact Statement. The Corps issued a Special Public Notice on Sept. 24, 2012 to invite the public to participate in the EIS process, which will end on Jan 21, 2012.

  • Sep 27th, 2012
A Chinese coal carrier leaked 4 tons of oil after striking Australian reefs in April last year.

In support of the Charter Review Commission changes | Guest column

As a past San Juan County Commissioner, County Council Member, and now as your State Senator, I have followed closely the work of the Charter Review Commission and their proposed improvements to the San Juan County Home Rule Charter.

  • Sep 25th, 2012

Hearts & Hands: helping seniors | Guest column

In 2008 I retired and moved to Orcas full time. By the next year, I was anxious to get involved in volunteer work and through Betsy Louton at the Senior Center I learned about “Hearts and Hands.”

  • Sep 18th, 2012

Sounder needs help to support mercy flights | Editorial

It’s a disease that doesn’t care how old you are, how much money you have in the bank or what color your skin is.

  • Sep 18th, 2012

Students commitment is inspiring | Guest Column

But the reason for my letter is to point to the leadership of our students in wanting to bring back both music and the library to our schools. I am awed, and humbled, at their commitment to the music program and the school library.

  • Sep 16th, 2012

Reject charter amendments | Letter

Vote to reject Proposition No. 1 as put forward by the Charter Review Commission. Here’s why.

  • Sep 13th, 2012

Chamber Music Festival was a success | Letter

Thank Goodness for Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival volunteers, community businesses and restaurants, and patrons! Thank goodness for all who:

  • Sep 12th, 2012

Music students support school concert | Letter

Three years ago, our Orcas school band and orchestra were combined. We held concerts in our loud, dusty cafeteria to an audience of parents and family. Then things changed.

  • Sep 12th, 2012

Embrace differences that make us unique | Editorial

Being “different” comes in many forms, but the unifying element is that it’s hard to fit in when you’re not like everyone else.

  • Sep 12th, 2012

We want to hear your take on local issues | Editorial

Just in time for the election season, we would like to take a minute to remind readers about our editorial policies.

  • Sep 4th, 2012

‘Torso’ play review

It seems perfectly appropriate, as the days grow shorter and the nights darker, for another Actor’s Theater of Orcas Island delight that makes us think. And think again, as we shudder at the thought. Doug Bechtel’s stunning production of Seattle playwright Keri Healey’s dark, complex drama “Torso” at the Grange offers strong acting by familiar faces we thought we knew.

  • Sep 1st, 2012

Power of music at our fingertips | Editorial

The notes ring out, brilliant, beautiful and resounding against the cathedral ceilings.

  • Aug 28th, 2012

CRC wasted its time | Guest column

Observing the machinations of the Charter Review Commission has been instructive. The Home Rule Charter of 2005 was the first to succeed in over twenty years in Washington state with a 65 percent majority of San Juan County voters.

  • Aug 28th, 2012

Students deserve a school library | Editorial

We are profoundly sad to hear that the school’s library has been closed due to budget cuts.

  • Aug 23rd, 2012

‘No’ to charter review amendments | Guest column

This November the voters of San Juan County will be asked to vote for changes to the charter that governs the county. The provision to grant administrative or executive power back to the county council is the most worrisome of the proposed changes and should be considered carefully before you cast your vote.

  • Aug 23rd, 2012

CAO: setting the record straight | Guest column

Some organizations have spread fear about what you will be able to do with your property under the proposed critical areas ordinance.

  • Aug 14th, 2012

CAO Fears | Guest column

Some organizations have spread fear about what you will be able to do with your property under the proposed critical areas ordinance.

  • Aug 14th, 2012

CAO Fears | Guest column

Some organizations have spread fear about what you will be able to do with your property under the proposed critical areas ordinance.

  • Aug 14th, 2012

False alarm raised over Frisbees, kites, CAO | Guest column

Mr. Blanchard’s letter expresses concern that playing Frisbee or flying kites won’t be allowed near wetlands and Fish and Wildlife Habitat Conservation Areas (“Overreaching CAO buffer restrictions”, Aug. 1 Sounder, pg. 5).

  • Aug 13th, 2012

Get political at the county fair | Editorial

In addition to taking part in the fun and food at the fair, you can make your time even more rewarding by talking with the 200 islanders at the booths and tables of several dozen civic groups, political parties, businesses and local governments.

  • Aug 13th, 2012

A fear and love of birds | Reporter’s notebook

I have a fear of birds, which I suspect originated on a beach trip with my father when I was eight. He thought it was hilarious to put bits of bread on my head to feed the seagulls. That event compiled with Hitchcock’s horror film “The Birds,” instilled in me a great fear of those winged-creatures equipped with cold, beady eyes and sharp talons and beaks.

Gear up, get your voice heard – say no to coal | Guest column

This article is the last of the three-part series on the planned exports of coal and tar sands oil exports through the waters surrounding our islands.

  • Aug 7th, 2012

Why Cimarron should run the Orcas Island Solid Waste Station | Guest column

Cimarron is an experienced solid waste and recyclable materials handling company that has been serving the citizens of San Juan County for over 15 years.

  • Jul 31st, 2012

Solid waste changes could mean great potential for community | Guest Column

Orcas Recycling Services, the local nonprofit best known for The Exchange, recently submitted a proposal to the county to operate the Orcas Island solid waste transfer station. We submitted this proposal on behalf of our island community.

  • Jul 31st, 2012
Sales Tax Revenue

Do your part to boost sales tax revenue | Guest column

In my first year as auditor, the first time I went out on a limb to project revenue, it was to say that sales tax revenue that year would not meet budget.

  • Jul 31st, 2012
Sales Tax Revenue

Fun times ahead at the county fair | Editorial

Yes, August has indeed arrived and with a quick look at the calendar we’re reminded that opening day of the San Juan County Fair is just two weeks away.

  • Jul 30th, 2012

Vote yes to keep public safety services | Editorial

It wasn’t the first time her husband raised a fist to her face. But she had no idea it would be the last. Despite a frantic call to 911, she died at the hands of her spouse. Local deputies were overworked and in the middle of a major car accident. They couldn’t respond to the call.

  • Jul 26th, 2012
Fire Chief Kevin O’Brien

Orcas Fire Chief report

Over the course of the Independence Day holiday week from July 3 through July 8, we responded to 29 alarms: 21 were EMS and eight were fire.

  • Jul 26th, 2012
Fire Chief Kevin O’Brien
County Administrator Bob Jean

County administrator report | Guest column

I took the helm from veteran San Juan County Administrator Pete Rose at a challenging time. County government has been sailing in stormy financial seas since the great recession hit in 2008. But the county has continued to make headway and accomplished a great deal. A hard-working county council and dedicated professional staff, elected and appointed, have remained focused on key goals and on improving overall health, safety and community quality of life in the San Juan Islands.

  • Jul 18th, 2012
County Administrator Bob Jean

You are what you eat on Orcas Island | Editorial

We’re not one of the healthiest counties for nothing. While most kids are eating tater tots and breaded chicken, Orcas Island students tend to their very own garden.

  • Jul 16th, 2012

Crime in the islands disrupts paradise | Editorial

We know all too well the perils of crime in a small community. Colton Harris-Moore drove that point home with his exploits as the Barefoot Bandit.

  • Jul 16th, 2012
San Juan County Auditor Milene Henley

County Auditor releases new financial report | Guest column

San Juan County Auditor Milene Henley has announced the publication of an annual financial report for the county for fiscal year 2011.

  • Jul 3rd, 2012
San Juan County Auditor Milene Henley