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Articles from the January 27, 2022 edition

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  • Driving it

    Jan 27, 2022

  • North Mason closed for threat

    Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    The North Mason School District closed Hawkins Middle School, James A. Taylor and North Mason high schools on Tuesday due to a recommendation from the Mason County Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff’s Office investigated threats of violence Monday and recommended closing the upper campus until the investigation was completed, according to a news release from the school district. On Tuesday afternoon, the Sheriff’s Office deemed the threats not credible after determining the threats could not be valid...

  • Shelton orator heading to state

    Gordon Weeks|Jan 27, 2022

    Shelton High School senior Katherine Peck said her friends and relatives call her a "poli-sci nerd," and that knowledge and her presentation skills are propelling her to a statewide contest. Peck is the winner of the American Legion Post 31's annual Constitutional Speech Contest conducted Jan. 8 at the American Legion Veterans Hall in downtown Shelton. She will represent the post at the state contest March 11-12 in Ephrata, with the opportunity to win scholarship money and the chance to advance...

  • 'She's ghosted us,' Pioneer teacher says of superintendent

    Gordon Weeks|Jan 27, 2022

    On Jan. 11, Pioneer Elementary and Middle School students and teachers were given about 20 minutes notice to evacuate the schools due to an outbreak of COVID and staff shortages. For seven school days, instructors taught remotely, which was a challenge for three teachers who don't have internet at their homes. Some teachers gave lessons while sitting in their cars in the middle school parking lot. Teachers shared their challenges and concerns Tuesday evening at the Pioneer School Board meeting...

  • School Briefs

    Compiled by reporter Gordon Weeks|Jan 27, 2022

    Students achieve honor at Spokane college Shelton natives Jael Adams and Gregory Jenney earned spots on the honor roll for the fall quarter at Spokane Community College. To be eligible, a student must earn a GPA of 3.0 or better. Roberton has perfect GPA Christinia Roberton of Shelton earned a perfect 4.0 GPA for the fall semester at Bismarck State College on Bismarck. North Dakota. That earned her a spot on the president’s honor roll. SHS students stage romantic comedy The Shelton High School theater department stages the romantic comedy ...

  • Fire District 12 answers community questions

    Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    its monthly commissioners meeting Jan. 18 and responded to questions submitted by the community, which may have brought up more community questions than before. The Journal attempted to schedule an interview with the commissioners and chief Kelli Walsworth, but commissioner Albert Wilder said the commissioners or chief Walsworth would not do any interviews until after the accountability audit being conducted by the state Auditor’s Office is completed. During the meeting, it was announced the d...

  • Stories told, questions asked in Sunday school

    Kirk Ericson|Jan 27, 2022

    Figurative language confounds children. The first time I heard “Put some elbow grease into it,” I imagined it came in a can, like 3-In-One oil. I checked the cupboard. We were out. In the playground of metaphor, few pieces of work are as bewildering as a religious work, and the religious work I’m most familiar with is the Bible, due to a lifetime of Sunday school at Presbyterian churches in Spokane. Here are some biblical stories, some questions and some apparently valuable lessons not learn...

  • Letters to the Editor

    Jan 27, 2022

    Support our children Editor, the Journal, I would like to urge you to vote “yes” on the upcoming Hood Canal School District Renewal Levy and capital bond on Feb. 8. Please note that the new rate will be lower than the current rate. The current rate is $2.47 per $1,000 of assessed home value; the new rate is estimated at $2.18 per $1,000 of assessed home value. The purpose of levy dollars is to help fully fund education since the Legislature does not. These additional funds are used to supplement school operations, which includes special edu...

  • My thoughts on the Belfair sewer project

    Randy Neatherlin|Jan 27, 2022

    More than 10 years ago, the Mason County Board of Commissioners burdened Belfair business owners and all of Mason County with a sewer system nobody could afford. All of Mason County has been subsidizing this burden ever since. Last year alone, Mason County spent $1.2 million of your money just to cover the debt service. Was it wrong 10 years ago? Would it be wrong if the county did it to you again? I sure think so. Your county commission is about to make a big decision, again regarding unnecessary debt. Two commissioners recently wanted to...

  • Gnatty dread

    Alex Fethiere|Jan 27, 2022

    No matter the season, something always landed in my wine. In summer it was fruit flies and in winter it was fungus gnats. That took a little while to figure out. Plants overwintering in the breakfast nook would, by December, be home to generations of scrawny flying insects. These were not apparent on the soil but only in the air, your face or your adult beverage. Especially attracted to fungal odors such as those of beer or wine yeast, fungus gnats constitute six of the seven families...

  • HOPE Garden beds available at Callanan Park

    Gordon Weeks|Jan 27, 2022

    Twenty raised garden beds are available at Shelton's Callanan Park to low-income families who want to grow their own fruits and vegetables. The community garden is collaboration between Hands on Personal Empowerment (HOPE) Garden, Mason Conservation District and the City of Shelton. The garden beds are available first come, first served. Application forms are available on the HOPE Garden Project and Mason Conservation District websites. Four or five of them will be raised for easier access for g...

  • Commission Briefs

    Compiled by reporter Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    Belfair sewer hearing Monday The Belfair Sewer Project public hearing is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Monday through Zoom. The link to join the Zoom call for public comment can be found at Questions and comments can be emailed ahead of time to [email protected], mailed to the commissioner’s office at 411 North 5th Street, Shelton, or call 360-427-9670, ext. 230. During the public comment portion of the Jan. 18 commissioners meeting, two people commented on the Belfair Sewer Project. Greg Sypnicki said he watched the March 2...

  • Salmon habitat rules would affect agricultural uses

    Brooklynn Hillemann, Washington State Journal|Jan 27, 2022

    Advocates hope mandatory conservation of key habitat areas will help salmon runs recover, but opponents worry farmers will pay a price. House Bill 1838, to be known as the Lorraine Loomis Act in honor of the deceased Northwest Indian Fisheries commissioner, will reserve land on public and private property near salmon-bearing waterways. Prime sponsor of the bill, Rep. Debra Lekanoff, D-Anacortes, said salmon play a vital cultural and economic role in Washington. The potential loss of the species will affect all Washingtonians, she said....

  • Employment test for marijuana use questioned

    Brooklynn Hillemann, Washington State Journal|Jan 27, 2022

    Washington marijuana users won’t face losing their job over a positive drug test, if a proposal under consideration in the Legislature wins approval. Senate Bill 5517 would update the Washington law that allows employers to turn away job applicants and fire employees who test positive for marijuana in drug screenings. The prime sponsor of the bill, Sen. Karen Keiser, D-Des Moines, said current employment laws must be changed to accommodate legalization of the drug. “The war on drugs has had a really negative impact on so many communities,” she...

  • Bill promotes housing variety in single-family neighborhoods

    Juan Morfin, Washington State Journal|Jan 27, 2022

    Creating higher densities in Washington’s cities will help reduce housing costs, cut fuel emissions and put an end to exclusionary zoning, supporters of House Bill 1782 say. Critics of the idea, however, say it will require significant overhauls in cities’ infrastructure and reduce local control of housing. The bill addresses the “missing middle,” housing options that exist between single-family homes and apartment complexes, including duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes. The bill requires cities to allow middle housing in every zone where s...

  • Rep. Griffey talks about House bills, priorities

    Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    Rep. Dan Griffey, R-Allyn, sent out a newsletter Jan. 21 to update constituents about the 2022 legislative session. In his newsletter, Griffey wrote one of his biggest priorities is to address the governor’s emergency powers. House Bill 1772 would address legislative involvement in gubernatorial proclamations relating to a state of emergency. Senate Bill 5039 would subject gubernatorial emergency orders to legislative approval. Griffey also said House Republicans are trying to address public s...

  • Rep. Drew MacEwen provides legislative update

    Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    Representative Drew MacEwen, R-Union, sent out a newsletter highlighting some of the bills House Republicans are working on. According to the newsletter, five bills are aimed at providing tax relief, including House Bills 1898 to reduce state property tax levies, House Bill 1594 to repeal the long-term care trust act and payroll tax, and House Bill 1913 repealing and replacing the long-term care trust and payroll tax. House Bill 2015 would expand the working families tax credit and House Bill...

  • County Briefs

    Compiled by reporter Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    Little Creek Casino hosting vaccine clinic Friday Little Creek Casino is hosting a vaccine clinic from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday. According to a Mason Health Facebook post, Moderna and Pfizer boosters and Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson vaccine doses will be available. The clinic will be at the Skookum Creek Event Center, 91 W. state Route 108, Shelton. Anyone interested can register for the clinic by scanning a QR code on the flier. Work on North 13th Street Monday Shelton has hired a private contractor to work on North 13th Street...

  • Mason County residents' health among worst in state

    Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    Mason County’s health outcomes are ranked in the lower middle range of counties in the state and the health factors are ranked as one of the least healthy counties in the state, according to the 2021 community health assessment released by the board of health. The life expectancy in Mason County is 79.7 years old, compared to the state’s 80.4 years. The county’s life expectancy rate increased by 4.3 years from 1994 to 2019. The top cause of death in Mason County is cancer, which kills 167 people...

  • Nonprofit Briefs

    Compiled by reporter Gordon Weeks|Jan 27, 2022

    Polar Bear Plunge benefits emergency services The Hood Canal Lions Club hosts the 12th annual Polar Bear Plunge fundraiser from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 12 at the Alderbrook Resort and Spa. Proceeds benefit Mason County Emergency Services. The plunge is open to anyone who raises at least $25 in donations. The top emergency worker fundraiser, and the top resident fundraiser, will be recognized. The event includes free coffee, hot chocolate, clam chowder and raffle prizes. The donations are tax-deductible. For more information, contact Lion Ian...

  • Ground breaking

    Jan 27, 2022

  • It's almost time to start your vegetable gardens

    Erika Stewart|Jan 27, 2022

    We are moving toward that wonderful time of year when we can start our vegetable gardens. Considering the price of produce, growing your own vegetables from seed is good economy. I'll share some tips I've learned over the years to help you maximize success. You will need containers, soilless seed starting mix or peat moss, potting soil and seeds. The containers can be purchased or use what you have on hand such as yogurt cups, cottage cheeses containers, or anything that can hold soil. Put...

  • Embrace change, or limited to the sum of your parts?

    Mark Woytowich|Jan 27, 2022

    "Today is the first day of the rest of your life. Start fresh. Follow through on your dreams." That message greets me at the front door. The words are printed on a thin strip of white paper taped beside the county sheriff's notice of eviction. The "ee-vict," as they like to call it in the landlord business, shows a date just short of Thanksgiving to be vacated by order of law. My friend Chuck, who is paying me to help him clear out the house, did not notice the ironic placement of that message....

  • 'SMASH!' takes '90s kids on twisted flashback

    Kirk Boxleitner|Jan 27, 2022

    You can tell a lot about someone by who their favorite "Saturday Night Live" performers are. Folks who still swear by the original "Not Ready For Prime Time Players" are staunchly loyal traditionalists. Those who favor Phil Hartman (RIP), Bill Hader or Kenan Thompson appreciate performers who are solidly dependable, if not as showy. If you love Adam Sandler, you either just turned 13 or have remained 13 for too many years. And the Joe Piscopo fan club consists solely of Joe Piscopo. If you...

  • Top 'Dog

    Matt Baide|Jan 27, 2022

    Rob Thomas is the new head football coach at North Mason High School. "I really can't put into words how excited I am to lead the Bulldogs," Thomas told the Journal in an email. "We have all the pieces to our puzzle, now it's time to put it together. I have dreamed about this day for a long time and for it to finally become a reality is one of the greatest feelings ever." Thomas Mosby resigned from the head coaching position after two seasons. In an email to the Journal, Mosby, who had a...

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