Cooke pens should not be allowed here

In 2017, Cooke Aquaculture’s net pen fishing operations collapsed, releasing over 300,000 Atlantic salmon into the Salish Sea off the coast of Cypress Island in the Traditional Territory of the Samish Indian Nation. Samish was deeply affected by the release of this non-native species into our waters.

Now, two years after the disaster, Cooke is applying to raise Triploid Trout in the Salish Sea. Such a concentrated rearing of fin fish in our traditional territory brings the potential for many risks. These risks, such as potential disease, transmission, sea lice and competition, far outweigh the benefits. The potential for genetic dilution could have detrimental impacts on the native fish and natural ecosystem of the Salish Sea.

Trout do not need to be raised in the Salish Sea. There are successful land-based freshwater facilities that can be used instead.

Cooke has shown its willful lack of attention to maintenance protocol once, as the investigation revealed in 2017, by withholding information from state agencies regarding details on the net pen failures.

Following the 2017 incident, Cooke lost its lease to operate at Deepwater Bay and Port Angeles. The facility at Deepwater Bay remains structurally suspect. The risk of failure is high. Samish believes it is premature to issue any kind of operating permit to a facility that does not have an active lease in state-owned aquatic lands.

Cooke has yet to demonstrate any willingness or actual documentation to rectify the serious, previous management lapses. Until we believe the situation from 2017 fully resolved, we should not trust Cooke with future operations with non-native species.

Simply put, we do not trust Cooke to operate in the Salish Sea.

Tom Wooten, chairman

Samish Indian Nation


Support new pool facility

I write to voice my support of the new facility proposed by the Fidalgo Pool and Fitness Center.

I am lucky to be a fourth-generation resident of Anacortes and have watched it grow and change during the lifespan of FPFC. I have tremendous gratitude toward the visionaries who in 1972 formed the pool district and gave a priceless gift to Anacortes.

My husband and I still enjoy FPFC, as we have for our entire lives, and watch as our daughter, who learned to swim during lessons and family swim at FPFC, now competes on the Thunderbirds. FPFC truly has something to offer patrons of all ages and abilities.

FPFC is now 44 years into its 50-year life expectancy. A structural review uncovered rusted and aged rebar within the walls and deepening hairline cracks along piping and walls in the basement. The pool is too cold for physical therapy patients, the elderly and small children, and too warm and crowded for lap swimmers. Safety is an issue with no ADA access, fire sprinklers or family areas.

The pool’s capacity in 1972 does not meet the needs of Anacortes today. Recently the city increased height restrictions so a Seattle developer can construct a five-story apartment building in a residential neighborhood. The tax breaks awarded to this developer would have covered many costs toward a new pool.

I fervently hope that the city’s officials and its residents, both new and old, choose to prepare for growth and to contribute to community projects that aim to preserve an important part of what makes Anacortes so special. FPFC unquestionably builds a stronger community, and an investment in a new pool will continue to benefit all as it has for generations.

Please vote yes on the new pool when the time comes, and consider making a donation.

Rachel Franulovich



Hanesworth for School Board

I have been a teacher at Anacortes High School for the past 28 years. Over that span, I have been pleased with the quality and dedication of our School Board. We have benefited greatly from good people doing good work. Among them, Marilyn Hanesworth has been uniquely valuable.

Even before her election, Marilyn found ways to contribute to our children. I observed this firsthand at the High School when she conceived and organized the single most successful career day program we have had in Anacortes. She personally ran this program for several years.

Since her election, she has served tirelessly as a School Board member. She is widely known for her willingness to work. She has the deliberative mind, the willingness to sacrifice for the common good, the ability to process and understand complex issues and the heart of an educator that make her perfect for this position.

Marilyn chose to live in Anacortes and raise her children here, largely because of the quality of our schools. There is no question in my mind that she has a significant role in the continued improvement of our district. I give my wholehearted endorsement for Marilyn Hanesworth.

Scott Burnett



Vote Fleming for City Council

I support Tor Fleming for Anacortes City Council Ward 2.

Tor is the right person to serve on council at this time. He has expertise in finance, human resources, organization and planning.

Tor has a proven record of being a leader and volunteer for schools and nonprofits. He will bring fresh eyes and new analysis to problems facing our city.

He is passionate about finding real solutions to the affordable housing crisis. This will require researching successful projects in other municipalities and taking bold steps. For too long, Anacortes has relied on developers to provide smaller, affordable homes, and it has not happened. 

Like most of you, I want to preserve the character of Anacortes even as we face and embrace change. Tor Fleming is thoughtful and knowledgeable about urban development.

He knows how to analyze financials to help Anacortes be accountable and efficient. He is energetic, independent and will offer an alternative point of view and vote when appropriate.

He is a strong environmentalist, good listener and genuinely nice person. Mark your ballot for Tor Fleming.

Sara Holahan


Appreciating Cleland-McGrath’s approach

Anacortes needs realistic solutions for growth management, not a “head-in-the-sand” approach.

Christine Cleland-McGrath is a City Council candidate who brings solid, sensible ideas to the table. Her work on the Planning Commission, as a real estate agent and with the Anacortes Family Center, puts her in a unique position to understand housing issues on a level that is unmatched.

I’ve watched her study the housing issues facing our city over the last several years. She has sought out programs from across the state in an effort to find the best parts of each that would work in our community.

She gets that the big challenges facing our city don’t have easy answers. Christine will work hard for all of us to create multifaceted solutions for each issue that comes to the council.

She is approachable, practical and open-minded. It’s refreshing to have a leader who truly considers the input and opinions of others in their decision making.

I am proud of the work Christine has done to be ready for this position, and I can’t wait to see her represent my family on the City Council.

Meredith McIlmoyle



Cleland-McGrath for council

Christine Cleland-McGrath is running for Anacortes City Council, and I strongly support her for this position.

Having worked with Christine for many years, I know her to be intelligent, hardworking and dedicated to Anacortes. She is the person who gets her hands dirty to make things happen. She listens, researches and collects the facts first, then gets to work for the greater good of a town she and her family have called home for four generations.

Christine and her husband understand the challenges of raising a young family here. She gets that “affordable housing” is not just a homelessness issue, but an issue for many young educated people who are employed and just can’t find an affordable rental. From her time working on the new development regulations, she also understands the importance of updating the critical areas, shoreline and tree preservation ordinances using best available science.

As our City Council tackles some of these issues, Christine’s perspective and experience is one that I want represented in the conversation. It’s important that young families and parents who want to raise their children here in our beautiful town have a voice at the table.

Jennifer Wilson



Support Cleland-McGrath in council race

City Council candidate Christine Cleland-McGrath and I were both raised in Anacortes. We share in being part of the same generation of locals who, after time away to attend college, returned to establish our own families and engage in the future success of Anacortes.

By sharing a love of common community, I have seen Christine’s unwavering commitment to the issues she cares about — affordable housing, early childcare and living-wage jobs for Anacortes. Christine’s excellent ability to connect and listen to others gives her the aptitude to move forward in making clear decisions.

I have always found her to do background work and research in preparation for what comes next. She holds the essential skillsets in being a dynamic member of our elected city staff.

With a strength of character beyond what I know in most, and a courage to speak, I believe Christine is the best choice for City Council Ward 2. It’s time for this generation to be involved in city government and have a say in the direction of our town.

Callie Martin



Vote Cutter for Anacortes School Board

Anacortes needs to elect Matt Cutter to the Anacortes School Board so that he may continue the work that he is already deeply involved in with our schools. The School Board selected Matt from 10 highly qualified applicants to fill Carl Yost’s open position in March, and he has already been working diligently for months.

The board obviously made a wise choice. It faces many daunting decisions in the near future, to include the selection of a new superintendent and the development of budgets in a very austere fiscal environment. Matt is the perfect leader to help guide these decisions.

Matt has decades of experience in leadership positions in the Navy and in private industry. This experience will be exceptionally valuable in the selection of the next superintendent. Additionally, he has managed multimillion-dollar government budgets. He is keenly aware of the need for fiscal responsibility and will use this experience to make every dollar count for our schools.

Finally, Matt is the father of three children who attend Anacortes schools. He will work incredibly hard on their behalf and for all students in Anacortes. I urge you to vote for him in November.

Bob Papadakis



Vote Marilyn Hanesworth for School Board

Please join me in supporting Marilyn Hanesworth’s re-election to the School Board.

As a mother of three children, the quality of our public schools is extremely important to me. My children have been taught by talented, caring educators in an award-winning school system. 

As a physician and former chief of staff at the hospital, I can attest that the quality of our schools is critical to attract and retain talented medical professionals.

Marilyn Hanesworth is a 14-year school volunteer who has served on the board the last four years. She has stepped forward in spearheading PTA activities, organizing Career Day at the high school and helping to lead STEM efforts through the Anacortes Schools Foundation. She volunteers actively at the Anacortes Family Center.

A computer programmer by vocation, Marilyn is particularly adept at asking questions and solving problems. 

During her tenure, graduation rates have increased 5%, ASD has ranked first of 35 Northwest districts for three consecutive years, and the board has been recognized with consecutive statewide awards.

Marilyn is a great value to the school board and the community. 

Join me in affirming the outstanding work that Marilyn has done on behalf of our kids.

Kathy Garde



Support Hanesworth’s district race

I strongly encourage you to support Marilyn Hanesworth for re-election to the Anacortes School director position. With many years of volunteering alongside Marilyn, I have found she is highly intelligent, a keen listener and one to ask great questions. These characteristics are important in the role of a school director to provide oversight and problem solving in navigating the future direction for educating our students.

As a software engineer and committed community volunteer, Marilyn brings diverse leadership skills to the board providing insight and representation. A couple examples are that she developed and coordinated an effective format for the annual high school career day. She also volunteers with our homeless children teaching art workshops at the Anacortes Family Center.

Soon our new high school project will be successfully complete under her leadership. The next most important task for the School Board is to hire the next superintendent. From her experience these last four years, I believe she is the most capable to understand the educational needs of our students and the challenges that lie ahead for our district. Thank you for your thoughtful consideration of Marilyn Hanesworth.

Jeannette Papadakis



Hanesworth right choice for School Board

What do you want in a school board member? Knowledge of the school district, balanced decision making, leadership, commitment, empathy for all constituents, accountability ….. and a vision toward the future. Marilyn Hanesworth is all this and more.

I have known Marilyn for many years. We met when she chaired Fidalgo Elementary’s yearbook production. This meant weaving through personalities, quality issues and deadlines. Her leadership, creativity, technical abilities and patience were important for success.

We next teamed up to create the STEM Committee within Anacortes Schools Foundation. Our goal was to provide students with enriched experiences in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math that supported curriculum. We launched a fundraiser (“Celebrate the Season”), and working directly with teachers, identified annual programs including a day at Rosario Beach, the fourth-grade boat trip, KidWind – a renewable engineering program and an annual summer STEM Camp. Marilyn supported these efforts with her organization skills, thoughtful research and taught some of the summer workshops.

She initiated a broadened “career day” at Anacortes High School, focusing on college- and career-bound students.

Marilyn is committed, approachable, objective and will continue to steer our district with her experience and her heart. Vote for Marilyn Hanesworth for Anacortes School Board.

Vicki Stowe


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