Giving Tuesday fundraiser taking applications

Stanwood-Camano Area Foundation is taking applications until Aug. 15 for SC Give, the annual Giving Tuesday online, 24-hour fundraiser for local nonprofits. An orientation workshop is slated for Sept. 4. SC Give will be held Dec. 3, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

Area nonprofits with projects in need of funding are eligible to participate. Projects must be realistic, attainable and directly benefit the community. To apply for participation, visit scgive.org/application.

Online Resource Hub 

S-CAF also is holding a workshop 1-4 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 13, at the Community Resource Center, 9612 271st St. NW, Stanwood, for nonprofits to learn how to list their programs and projects on the new Stanwood-Camano Online Resource Hub being developed in partnership with Providence Institute for a Healthier Community. Staff will be available to answer questions and help participants register. 

Democrats meet, picnic on Camano

Camano Island Democrats meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 15, in the Camano Island Library, 848 N. Sunrise Blvd., to discuss new candidate information and review plans for the annual picnic with live music, 2-5 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 18, at South Camano Grange. Expected picnic guests are Helen Price Johnson, county commissioner and state Senate candidate, and other local elected officials. Admission costs $10; children are free. Visit camanoislanddemocrats.com for more information.

 

School board to meet

Stanwood-Camano School Board will hold a public hearing on its proposed budget during its regular meeting at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 20, in the Administration Boardroom, 26920 Pioneer Highway, Stanwood. 

See stanwood.wednet.edu, School Board, or call 360-629-1222 to inquire.

 

Apply for IslCo tourism grants

Both Snohomish County and Island County are taking applications for 2020 2% Hotel-Motel Tax Tourism Promotion grants. 

Overnight lodging in unincorporated county areas generates program funding, which must be used for tourism marketing, special events and festival marketing and operations to attract tourists. 

• For Snohomish County, submit seven original copies of the application by Aug. 16. See program requirements at snohomishcountywa.gov, search for Hotel Motel Small Fund Grant. To inquire, contact Rich Huebner, Rich.Huebner@snoco.org or 425-388-6626.

• For Island County, submit applications by Aug. 31. See the proposal and rules at islandcountywa.gov, click on Board of Commissioners, then 2% Hotel/Motel Tourism. Request copies from Pam Dill, pamd@co.island.wa.us or 360-679-7353.

 

CIFR to celebrate promotions 

Camano Island Fire and Rescue will celebrate career advancements during a public CIFR Promotion Ceremony at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 27, in the Vista/Madrona Fire Station, 273 N. West Camano Drive, Camano Island.

Several firefighters will be recognized for recent or upcoming promotions:

• Capt. Jason Allen to assistant chief on Sept. 1.

• FF/EMT (firefighter/emergency medical technician) Erich Schweiger to captain Aug. 13.

• Part-time FF/EMT Rudy Puente to full-time career FF/EMT Aug. 19.

• Volunteer FF/EMT Matt Waite to full-time career FF/EMT Aug. 19.

• Paramedic Dean Speerbrecher for becoming the community resource paramedic.

Community residents are invited to attend. Light refreshments will be served. 

 

Stanwood seeks feedback with community survey

City officials and Washington State University researchers are conducting two surveys in Stanwood – a random survey by mail of Stanwood households and an online community survey.

All residents wanting to provide feedback can fine the online survey at ci.stanwood.wa.us in August. Officials said postcards with survey information were mailed to residents in late July. 

The surveys are confidential and ask identical questions that can help the city better understand how the community feels about services provided in Stanwood. 

 

US 2 trestle project finished ahead of schedule

No more major weekend closures for the westbound portion of the US 2 paving project in Snohomish County. Washington State Department of Transportation announced Monday that the Aug. 2-5 closure was the last, as contractor crews finished ahead of schedule with pavement preservation and structure repairs to keep commuters and commerce moving on westbound US 2 for years to come.

During five weekend closures that started in summer 2018, crews repaved three miles of westbound US 2 – including the Hewitt Avenue trestle – and one mile of eastbound US 2, installed enough waterproof matting to cover more than eight football fields, and made repairs to the trestle structure to minimize future emergency repairs.

The $11.6 million project upgraded the driving surface for the 41,000 vehicles traversing the highway daily.

• Drivers still can expect overnight lane reductions on US 2 in the coming weeks as crews finish expansion joint repairs and apply permanent striping. 

• The resurfacing project on US 2 near Index and Skykomish is in its final phase. Travelers can expect 45-minute weekday delays.

• Southbound I-5 work near Stanwood; lane closures coming before Labor Day. Crews working on the I-5 project between Conway and Arlington need to do additional work on the Pilchuck Creek Bridge later this month.

 

Wastewater facilities earn Ecology awards

Stanwood and Warm Beach wastewater treatment plant have been recognized as fully compliant and top-performing facilities. The state Department of Ecology announced Aug. 5 that both sites are among the 110 plants statewide to receive Ecology’s Outstanding Performance award.

Ecology evaluated more than 300 plants operating in Washington to determine if they were meeting the state pollution limits and permit requirements, which include: monitoring, reporting, spill prevention planning, pretreatment, and operational demands.

Nearly a third of all systems across the state achieved full compliance with their water quality permits in 2018. Among the award recipients were eight treatment plants in Snohomish County, four facilities in Island County and five city plants in Skagit County.

Ecology also acknowledged wastewater treatment plant operators, noting the critical role they play in keeping Washington’s waters clean. 

 

Referendum 88 OK for ballot

Referendum 88 was signed by enough Washington registered voters to qualify for the General Election, according to Secretary of State Kim Wyman on Wednesday. R-88 collected 213,268 signatures by the July 27 qualifying deadline; the minimum required was 129,811 signatures.

R-88 was filed by the American Coalition for Equality to repeal Initiative 1000, passed earlier this year by the Legislature, to overturn Washington’s 20-year-old voter-approved ban on affirmative action. 

R-88’s intent is to guarantee equal opportunity and access, without quotas or preferential treatment, in public education, employment and contracting and establish a commission to oversee diversity, equity and inclusion. The commission will have 29 members, 25 executive and four legislative. See full text of the measures at sos.wa.gov

 

New app shows softer Puget Sound shoreline 

Of Puget Sound’s 2,600 miles of shoreline, about 700 miles are armored by bulkheads and other structures that might have better solutions, such as Cornet Bay in Island County.

While hard armoring the shoreline can reduce some erosion and protect upland development from flooding, bulkheads often have serious long-term consequences on coastal ecosystems and Puget Sound beaches.

The state Department of Ecology has released a new online tool that shows before-and-after examples throughout the Sound where traditional bulkheads, seawalls and other “hard” structures were removed in favor of solutions more friendly to the environment. 

At Cornet Bay, the bulkhead was removed, shoreline regraded, beach nourished, vegetation planted, and wood was anchored in place on the beach. The changes minimized erosion, protected the ecosystem and created a visitor-friendly beach.

Users can view before-and-after photos of project sites using the tool at ecologywa.blogspot.com or by visiting flickr.com/photos/ecologywa.

 

Winter sports enthusiasts needed for committees

Washington State Parks is looking for people to serve on the Winter Recreation Advisory Committee or the Snowmobile Advisory Committee. From Northwest Washington, volunteers can apply by Aug. 30 for the at-large non-motorized representative seat.

Committee members review vital issues and advise the State Parks Commission and staff on program policy and funding priorities for snow removal, trail grooming, sanitation, education and enforcement. To submit nominations or request an application, contact the Winter Recreation Program at winter@parks.wa.gov or 360-902-8684 or visit parks.state.wa.us/Winter.

 

Ecology seeks comment on oil spill plan updates

Large oil handling facilities, vessels and pipelines in Washington are required to have oil spill contingency plans, separate from requirements for railroads. In 2018, the Legislature passed a bill directing the Washington Department of Ecology to amend the Oil Spill Contingency Plan Rule, particularly the cleanup of sinking oils, which are difficult to remove if spilled.

Ecology is proposing amendments to require increased response capability for spills of oils that may submerge or sink; establish requirements for spill management teams; require complex, large-scale drills for contingency plan holders; require consistent standards for training, operations and response technology; and establish standards for oiled-wildlife response service providers. 

Public comments on the changes can be submitted until Oct. 6 at ecy.wa.gov.

 

Washington begins transition away from hydrofluorocarbons 

A bill cutting the use of hydrofluorocarbons in refrigeration, heating and cooling, foams and aerosol products became law in Washington in May. HFCs are potent greenhouse gases that can contribute to climate change at rates thousands of times that of carbon dioxide. 

Washington Department of Ecology adopted reporting rules earlier this month (August) to begin the transition away from HFCs in products through 2024.

When the HFC law is fully implemented, it is expected to cut Washington’s greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of 1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide a year, a volume equal to the annual emissions from 217,000 cars.

The law sets an aggressive timeline to end new uses of HFCs. The first step is for manufacturers, importers and distributors to report whether they use the chemicals in their products by the end of this year. Then, between 2020 and 2024, many major uses of HFCs will be phased out.

The Washington law implements rules adopted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that were partially overturned in a 2017 court decision. 

Because the law focuses on companies that manufacture or import HFC-containing products, users of these products – including consumers, retailers and business owners – in most cases won’t have to do anything. 

When existing equipment wears out, product users can simply buy new, HFC-free replacement equipment. Equipment using environmentally safer HFC alternatives is already available and should not typically cost more than versions containing hydrofluorocarbons.

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