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The Issaquah Press
Issaquah, Washington
October 7, 2009     The Issaquah Press
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October 7, 2009
 

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THE ISSAQUAH PRESS WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2009 A3 By Warren Kagarise issaquah Press reporter From efforts to build roads, to adding social services, to making city programs more eco-friendly, Maureen McCarry is immersed in details of city projects large and smafi. As she runs for a second full City Council term, McCarry threads information about munici- pal programs into conversations about her campaign. MeCarry said she is convinced Issaquah will improve as the years unfold, but she said leadership -- her leadership -- would be essen- tial in the next four years as city staffers take on a docket that includes construction of a hospital in the Issaquah Highlands and a new roadway to link north and south Issaquah. Maui'een McCany "I think people who have pride friendly and improve transit. The next council will also over- see early plans to transform the downtown, undeveloped Cybil- Madeline Park into a key piece of the city parks system. 'I think that my work on the council, my previous work and my volunteer work has shown that I can bring projects in with good negotia- tions and a good feeling with the community," McCarry said. The construction of a Swedish Medical Center campus in the highlands and the drive to ban poly- styrene in Issaquah restaurants and stores will also require leadership from the City Council, McCarry said. "My passion for improving this in their community will bring that "We are one of the city, for making this city even forward, she said. first small cities to greater, is what's pushing me," she McCarry cited the Interstate 90 take on polystyrene said. Undercrossing as a good example -- and that's a Voters will choose between of a public-private partnership, major, major effort," McCarry, the incumbent council The city and a developer building she added. president, and Joan erobala, a on the former Zetec property will Council members real estate agent and member of complete the project, will likely consider a ban on CITY COUNCIL Position 6 several city boards. "I think the key in any future Styrofoam takeout containers and McCarry moved to Issaquah in endeavor will be public-private other polystyrene products before 1993 and later settled on Squak partnerships," she said. the end of the year. Mountain. The former Harborview MeCarry said the effort to open a As a councilwoman, McCarry Medical Center executive kicked off her campaign Memorial Day weekend. After Ava Frisinger became mayor in 1998, McCarry was chosen from 10 candidates to fill the seat held by Frisinger, a for- mer councilwoman. McCarry served until 2000, but opted not to run then. She made a successful council comeback five'years later. McCarry said the impact of the recession would be a key issue dur- ing the next four years. City officials and staffers, she said, must forge partnerships with private organiza- tions to help defray costs and com- plete municipal projects. "We have to think of a way to maintain essential public servic- es," she said. She said reaching out to resi- dents and volunteers could help the city save money. McCarry said she and neighbors cleared inva- sive blackberry bushes near their human services campus in voted with her colleagues against Issaquah would also require experi- raising property taxes despite risks ence. Officials envision the campus as a hub to aid people in need of food, health care and employment. "In these dwindling economic times, it is essential," she said. With voters set to elect at least two new council members, McCarry said her inside knowledge would be important. Councilmen David Kappler and John Rittenhouse decided not to run for re-election. The shift will represent "a huge change in how we envision the city," McCarry said. "Right at a critical time when we are planning for our future with 900 [acres] and even more if we include down- town and Gilman Village." McCarry was referring to the Central Issaquah Plan, a work-in- progress that sets to guide growth in the 915-acre commercial district. Included in the plan will be efforts to make the city more pedestrian- to the city's bond rating. McCarry said the decisioff was complicated, because the bond rating had to be weighed against taxpayers' wal- lets. But the bond rating subse- quently improved, she said. "These are hard decisions to make," she said. When she launched her re-elec- tion bid in May, McCarry posi- tioned herself as a candidate who could help economic development move forward in the city. She is not shy about using her connec- tions to attract businesses to the city and promote Issaquah. "I love the people who want to locate here," McCarry said. "This is a great city and it's going to get even greater." Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or wkagarise@isspress.com. Comment at www. issaquahpress, com. By Warren Kagarise Issaquah Press reporter neighborhood. Long before she launched her bid for City Council, before she even became a city resident, Joan erobala laid the groundwork for her campaign, erobala and her family moved to South Cove in 1979, decades before the neigh- borhood along Lake Sammamish would be annexed into Issaquah. When Probala talks about her can- didacy -- and she talks about her can- didacy a lot these days -- she men- tions her role in extending city limits to include South Cove, where resi- dents voted for annexation in November 2005. Joan rtobala for issues to rally residents to demand city action. "We had town hall meetings in Probala, a real which we invited people in," estate agent and Probala said. "Now, we need to former Issaquah take that another step. We need to Chamber of go out to the communities, out to Commerce presi- the homeowners associations, so dent, touts her ability to bring people know that the city is con- do it to prepare for the future, so the businesses are more willing to locate in an area that shows it's been taken care of." Probala, a member of the Arts Commission, said more public art and perhaps a major piece of pub- lic art at Pedestrian Park -- at the corner of Front Street and Sunset Way -- would spruce up down- town. "We need a vision for down- town," she said. "We need to know exactly what it's going to look like. We need to have businesses that draw people downtown to support our economic growth." As city officials grapple with falling sales tax revenues and cuts to city services and staff, Probala said across-the-board budget cuts are unrealistic. She said police and fire service are essential, but vol- unteer groups could assume other functions. Probala suggested enlisting volunteers to maintain overgrown medians and road- sides. "Yes, we have to cut the budg- et, but we have to be creative and find ways to help do the together South Cove community cerned about solving their prob- things that need to be done," she groups. Her credentials as a lems. said. member of the city Arts, A recent example Probala cited erobala said city staffers should Planning Policy and Sister Cities was the decision to ban dogs at work during the downturn to commissions form a cornerstone of her bid. "I've been preparing for this for the last 15 years, with all of the boards and commissions and oth- ers things I've done for the city. It's all led up to this," erobala said. Though she became a city resi- dent after the 2005 annexation, Probala opted not to run during the last round of council elections in 2007. She launched her cam- paign in late February. Voters will choose between erobala and incumbent Council President Maureen McCarry. "I was in a place in my life where I had the time, and I had the support of my family and encouragement for years from my family to do this," Probala said. "It just felt right." Probala said City Council mem- bers need to engage residents in neighborhoods, instead of waiting Timberlake Park, in her South Cove neighborhood. The move surprised pet owners and galva- nized proponents and opponents of the ban. erobala said city decisions should be more acces- sible and transparent to resi- dents. "If you don't know the people, you don't know the process, and you get upset and you don't know who to go to," erobala said. "I need to change that." Another plank of her platform is a drive to improve Front Street. erobala said new storefronts need to be added and repairs must be made to aging buildings to make the area more attractive to busi- nesses. "We need to change Front Street. Keep the character, keep the aura that we have in the downtown, but we need to update it, we need to add some freshness to the city," she said. "We need to determine how to lure new busi- nesses to Issaquah. She pointed out how sales tax revenues drive city spending. "We have to think about, how do we stimulate the economy in our town? How do we get busi- nesses to come.?" she said. "We have to look at the permitting process. We have to bring the chamber and the city together to sit down and look at all of the processes, not just on a one-time basis when an individual busi- nessperson has a problem and brings it to the city." When she talks about her cam- paign, Probala melds her past experiences as she sells her candi- dacy. "I want to make a change," she said. Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or wkagarise@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com. to others By Chantelle Lusebrhlk and Da 4d Hayes Issaquah Press reporters Issaquah Community Bank is merging with three other regional banks to form the Bank of the Northwest. The merger includes The Bank of Everett, The Bank of Bellevue and The Bank of Tacoma and should be complete by the end of the year if it is given regulatory approval by government officials. The majority owner of the four banks, though, which will help shelter them from the financial cri- sis. "Really, it is a unique opportuni- ty that we have as an organization, because of common ownership of the four banks," he said. "We can try to address the financial times we are currently in. We have the opportunity to increase our effi- ciency and be profitable. "It allows us to strengthen our position, both in terms of capital and earnings." branches is Capitol Bancorp Aside from that, not much will Limited, which will operate the change for Issaquah residents, he Washington banks under a single charter. Capitol's majority owner- ship has meant that the four com- munity banks were operating from the same policies and technology platforms. Right now, Issaquah Community Bank and the others are working off of the same technology plat- said. "Our goal is to provide banking practices in support of our commu- nity," he said. "We don't know how long this financial crisis will go on, but I think, at the end of the day, we are going to learn that it is real- ly important to make sure that you have a very solid relationship with form, but the merger will increase your banker. That is the banking I each bank's efficiency, said Robert am committed to, always have Ittes, president and chief executive been and will continue to be." officer of Issaquah Community Bank. "Staffing is going to remain the same, he said. "The same local folks that we've had all along will still be serving the Issaquah com- munity. That is not going to change." The merger does offer the opportunity to join with other local Thomas Giovanelli, of Capitol, will be the new chairman, presi- dent and chief executive of Bank of the Northwest. Chantelle Lusebrink: 392-6434, ext. 241, or dusebrink@isspress.com. David Hayes: 392-6434, ext. 237, or dhayes@isspress.com. Comment at www.issaquahpress.com. A 9-year-old Sunset Elementary School student was approached by a man in a vehi- cle he didn't know while walking to his bus stop at 8:50 a.m. Sept. 29. The student was walking on 182nd Avenue Southeast when a short, white-haired man, wearing a black hat and a green families know of the incident , Draw attention to yourself by and make sure students are yelling as loud as you can. aware of what they should do Yelling "stranger" rather than when a stranger approaches. "help" lets everyone within them. earshot know that this is not a District officials recommend using these tips to stay safe: Walk to and from school or other locations in groups. jacket, asked if the boy would , Use paved walkways, not like a ride in his vehicle up the shortcuts through wooded areas. hill. , Don't interact with unknown people or animals. Never give personal informa- tion, especially your name, age or address to strangers. Don't use iPods or other music players while walking or waiting outside. If students do have an encounter with a stranger, dis- When the student said no, the man, driving a dark-green GMC vehicle, drove away. The student reported the inci- dent to school officials and a Bellevue Police officer, who inter- viewed the student and filed a report. The officer patrolled the area game. Get slippery. Pull your arms into your chest (without crossing them). By keeping your arms close to your torso, you are hard- er to grab by the arms. Run to safety -- any place where there are other people. First choice is to run to adults. The second choice is to run to children. Never run and hide. You need witnesses. The rules to running: Look where you are running (not behind you). You are not allowed to get tired until you are safe. for a vehicle fitting that descrip- tion, but didn't find one. A similar incident happened to a Maywood Middle School stu- dent Sept. 18 as he was walking to school in the morning. In that instance, the student told the woman who offered him a ride he didn't need one and the woman drove away. District officials sent out bul- letins via e-mail both times to let Bite. If a stranger grabs you, trict officials recommend using fight back. You do not need to part of the Step Defense become a victim. The best Program: weapon for everyone is biting. Step back away from the The human bite has between 100 stranger, and 200 pounds of pressure. Keep a "bubble of safety" of at , Rules to biting: Step toward least 15 feet between you and the attacker; bite whatever is the stranger. Once you are more closest; bite as hard as you can; than 15 feet away, the chances and dont stop biting until he or of him or her re-engaging you she lets you go. Then, run to are small, safety. ADULT AND PEDIATRIC ENT Clarification Regarding a story in the Sept. 30 Press: Overlake Hospital Medical Center voluntarily dropped its lawsuit against the state Department of Health on Sept. 18, based on assurances Overlake received from the department that it would follow the certificate of need process in accordance with state law. Overlake did not file the lawsuit to "slow construction of the new Swedish Hospital." Rather, Overlake's intention was to ensure the department follows the process and state law, according to Patrick Moody, Overlake's director of Marketing and Public Relations. Sherwin-Williams to open at Pine Lake Village Sherwin-Williams has leased retail space in Pine Lake Village, owned by Regency Centers. Specializing m high-quality paints, stains, masonry coatings and brand-name wall and floor coverings, Sherwin-Williams leased 3,700 square feet of retail space and is slated to open for business in November. Pine Lake Village is at 228th Avenue and Issaquah-Pine Lake Road in Sammamish.