Changing Comments and Committees at Fire & Rescue New Policy and commission structure in place at first 2018 BOFC meeting

— by Susan McBain, Orcas Issues reporter — A new public comment policy and the operation of a new committee structure were on display at the January 16 regular meeting of the Orcas Board of Fire Commissioners (BOFC). The public comment policy, adopted in December, creates one public comment period … Continue reading

Letter to Editor | Why Orcas Needs Health Commissioners

— from Norm Zimlich — The proposed Orcas Public Hospital District presents many issues for consideration, but none as significant as the election of PHD Commissioners. Orcas residents already pay taxes for Orcas Island Fire and Rescue, and they have also donated generously to build the Orcas Medical Center facility and … Continue reading

Annual Homeless Count Scheduled for January 25 Volunteer training scheduled

— from San Juan County Communications — San Juan County’s 2018 Point in Time Homeless Count will be conducted on Thursday, January 25. Count organizers and volunteers work with local family resource centers, food banks, emergency cold weather shelters, churches, healthcare providers, senior centers, libraries, the sheriff’s office, and many … Continue reading

ICE Targets NW Immigration Activist for Deportation Protest organizer at Tacoma Detention Center to appear before Federal agency

— by Lilly  Fowler and Enrique Cerna from — As U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE] continues to crack down on undocumented immigrants around the country, the agency has sent a prominent immigrant-rights activist in Washington a notice that it is initiating deportation proceedings against her. Maru Mora Villalpando, 47, known … Continue reading

OPALCO Seeks Board Candidates For District 2 (Orcas et al)

— from Suzanne Olson for OPALCO — Nominations are now open for the 2018 OPALCO Board of Directors election. There are two positions up for election in District 2 (Orcas, Armitage, Big Double, Blakely, Fawn, Little Double and Obstruction islands). Interested co-op members from District 2 can apply to be … Continue reading

Guest Editorial: Call to Orcas Action Now! Americans and Islanders Protect the Dreamers and the Vulnerable Among Us

— by Eleanor Hoague, Judy Scott and Marc Cohen, updated Jan. 16 at 3 p.m. — An intense debate over the DACA program (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) is coming to a climax this week (by January 19). If Congress does not act to protect the more than 800,000 DACA … 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

Sheriff’s Report | January 3 – 9, 2018

— from San Juan County Sheriff’s Office — January 3, 2018 18-000071 Wanted Person 09:57:14 01/03/18 A Friday Harbor Deputy arrested a wanted male on an outstanding Felony warrant. The male was booked into jail and a report completed. 18-000072 Forgery 10:54:57 01/03/18 A deputy responded to a report of … Continue reading

Inslee Speaks With Interior Secretary About Offshore Drilling Plan

— from Governor Inslee’s Office — Gov. Jay Inslee today issued the following statement after a phone call with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke regarding the recent draft offshore drilling plan. Zinke recently announced he is exempting the state of Florida from the new plan. “I spoke with Secretary Zinke today … Continue reading

Eastsound Planners Schedule Work for 2018 Advisory committee sets timelines and stakeholders for top issues

— by Margie Doyle — The Eastsound Planning Review Committee (EPRC) got off to a substantive start in its first meeting of 2018, fleshing out its workplan, publicizing the Eastsound Vision Survey completed last fall, and hearing from Council Member Rick Hughes. The EPRC is charged by San Juan County … Continue reading

Ferry Service Anticipates Bad Weather Service Disruptions ALERT: Sunday morning ferry cancelled; service resumes on 12:40 p.m. vessel

— from Washington State Ferries — UPDATE: 12:30 p.m. Sunday The repairs have been completed and the Elwha will return to service with the 12:40 p.m. departure from Anacortes to Lopez and Orcas. The next departure from Orcas is 2:10 p.m. Reservation holders will be given priority loading. We apologize … Continue reading

Sheriff’s Report | December 27, 2017 – January 2, 2018

— from San Juan County Sheriff’s Office — December 27, 2017 17-008970 Theft 15:22:38 12/27/17 A Deputy in Friday Harbor received a report of a lost property. The Deputy determined that the property was most likely stolen. This case is still under investigation. 17-008975 Wanted Person 19:07:38 12/27/17 A wanted … Continue reading

Gov. Inslee Responds to Federal Justice Dept. Crackdown on State Cannabis Laws Cole Memorandum has allowed states' "common sense" marijuana laws

— from the office of Washington State Governor Jay Inslee — Gov. Jay Inslee issued the following statement today upon news that the U.S. Department of Justice would announce its decision to rescind the Cole Memorandum that has allowed Washington and other states to implement common-sense marijuana laws: “If news … Continue reading

NAS Whidbey Island SAR Transports Cardiac Patient from Port Angeles

— from Michael Welding for NAS Whidbey — A Search and Rescue (SAR) team of six from Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island conducted a medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) from Olympic Medical Center in Port Angeles, Wash. to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle on Friday, Dec. 29, 2017. The SAR alert … Continue reading

WSF Issues Severe Wind Warning Expect delays on Anacortes/San Juan route

— from Washington State Ferries — The National Weather Service is predicting severe winds in our region this evening, December 29. This storm system is expected to bring heavy rain and high winds to Western Washington. Safety is the number one priority of Washington State Ferries, so in the event … Continue reading