Candidates for Orcas Hospital District — File Soon Candidate filing now, online filing scheduled February 5 through February 9

— from Milene Henley, San Juan County Auditor — The San Juan County Council has approved, based on petitions submitted last summer, a proposition for the formation of a public hospital district on Orcas Island. The question of formation will go to the voters of Orcas Island in the April … Continue reading

Letter to the Editor: Public Meets to Discuss Proposed Deer Harbor Parking

— from Terry Neill — The Jan. 13 meeting concerning the Deer Harbor parking plan was attended by about 70 people in addition to Councilman Rick Hughes, County Engineer Colin Huntemer and half a dozen other county employees. As the meeting opened there were handouts on each chair containing the … Continue reading

Eastsound Vision Survey Results: Orcas Residents Value Natural Environment and “Village” Quality of Eastsound Want affordable housing, parking and streetscapes improved

— from the Eastsound Planning and Review Committee (EPRC) — Thank you to the 388 Orcas residents who completed all 65 questions in the recent Eastsound Vision survey and to the additional 217 who completed part of the survey. The large number of people completing the survey creates an accurate … Continue reading

Ranker: Protecting Orca Whales and Salish Sea in 2018 Legislative Session a Priority

— from Senator Kevin Ranker — Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, announced new legislation to protect Washington state’s Orca Whales and marine waters under the Salish Sea Protection package. “Increasing vessel traffic, potential oil spills, pollution, invasive species and climate change are all major threats to our incredible Salish Sea … Continue reading

Dining at Doe Bay Helps the Orcas Island Historical Museums

— from Carol Kulminski — Every month, Doe Bay gives back to the island by supporting non-profits. For the month of January on Thursdays, they will be supporting the Orcas Island Historical Museums. Each Thursday in January, Doe Bay Open Mic Night gives a percentage of the sale from each entree … Continue reading

Atlantic Salmon Net Pens — Here? "Our Sound, Our Salmon" with Kurt Beardslee

On January 4th, Kurt Beardslee invites you to join the Our Sound, Our Salmon campaign on Orcas Island for a lively discussion on the future of Atlantic salmon net pens in Puget Sound. Kurt Beardslee is a co-founder of the Wild Fish Conservancy and has been its Executive Director since … Continue reading

Orcas Issues Makes Predictions for 2018 Tell us yours, and your resolutions!

Ta Da! We have looked into the future and make these predictions for 2018: State Department of Transportation will add solar-power boats to its fleet of ferries Victoria will complete its sewage treatment plant, with pressure from its neighbors in the San Juans — tourists, legislators and health and environmental … Continue reading

Looking Back at Our 2017 Predictions Anyone keeping score?

by Lin McNulty and Margie Doyle — As we look back on 2017, locally we did our best to resist national efforts to undermine immigrant rights, environmental protections and government-corporate venality. We did good, shepherding our medical providers, protecting our neighborhoods, building and remodeling facilities, giving to the needy and … Continue reading

Editorial Reprise: Not a Time for Keeping Silent on Climate Change A call to cooperative action

— by Katie Wilkins, originally published Feb. 15, 2017 — I have wanted to write this for a long time. I have waited because I didn’t know how to fit a topic as large as climate change into few enough words. But as the price of saying nothing grows higher, … Continue reading

2017: What a Year, Far and Near

— by Margie Doyle — As the tumultuous year 2017 comes to an end, one of our pleasures is to look back on events as they happened. Our core belief is You can make a difference, and our reports, opinions and comments bear this out. Here for your pleasure is … Continue reading

Public Hospital Districts: Been There, Done That District commissioners from Mason County and Lopez Island give perspective

— by Susan McBain, Orcas Issues reporter — People who have been involved in existing Public Hospital Districts (PHDs) in Washington were the focus of the Dec. 18 Town Hall on establishment of a PHD on Orcas. The four guests gave short presentations on their experience and then answered many … Continue reading

Friends of San Juans Appeals Shoreline Master Program to State Board For failure to protect orca, salmon, forage fish, and beaches

— from Stephanie Buffum for Friends of the San Juans — Today, the Friends of the San Juans (Friends) appealed San Juan County’s recently updated Shoreline Master Program (SMP) to the Washington Growth Management Hearings Board. The SMP is the primary tool for protecting the fragile marine ecosystem that depends on … Continue reading

Letter to Editor | Orcas Recycling Looks Forward With Gratitude Thank you for helping us re-open The Exchange

— from Board and Staff of ORS & The Exchange — Almost five years ago our collective heart sank when the quirky but beloved Exchange burned to the ground. Today, Orcas Recycling Services (ORS) would like to thank you. A beautiful new Exchange reuse facility has re-opened on the original spot … Continue reading

Business Spotlight: From Homebrew Contests to BoatHouse CiderWorks

–by Sam Gailey — The inspiration behind Libby Garcia’s BoatHouse Ciderworks—located by the Orcas Island ferry landing—came from her grandparents’ boathouse in Obstruction Pass.  After noticing her grandparents’ trees were growing lush with apples, Libby decided to make hard cider in the cool of their boathouse. Those very same batches … Continue reading

Vision Survey Directs EPRC in Priorities Eastsound Vision process moves forward

— by Margie Doyle — At the December meeting of the Eastsound Planning Review Committee (EPRC) the county-appointed members heard a summary of results of the Eastsound Vision Survey and formulated their 2018 priorities. They also elected new officers. Members of the EPRC are Yonaton Aldort, Paul Kamin, Bob Maynard, … Continue reading

San Juan Preservation Trust Names New Executive Director Angela Anderson to "come home” from Hawaii to the Salish Sea

— from Craig Canine for San Juan Preservation Trust — The board of trustees of the San Juan Preservation Trust, a nonprofit land conservation organization based in Friday Harbor, Washington, announced today that it has hired Angela Anderson as its new executive director, effective February 12, 2018. Ms. Anderson will lead … Continue reading