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- Apr 22, 2011 at 8:00AM updated at 12:06PM
The Senate approved the state transportation budget this week, and the 2011-13 spending plan includes $32.1 million toward the construction of a new 64-car ferry.
- Apr 23, 2011 at 9:00AM
More than 50 years ago, 20 women formed a guild on North Whidbey with the goal of building the island’s first hospital.
- Apr 23, 2011 at 9:00AM
Even if a proposed $50 million expansion becomes a reality, Whidbey General Hospital is facing stiff competition from nearby hospitals. Several off-island hospitals, which attract a significant number of Whidbey Island patients along with their insurance money, have poured hundreds of millions of dollars into expanding and modernizing facilities.
- Apr 23, 2011 at 9:00AM
Voters will soon decide whether a modernization of Whidbey General Hospital becomes a reality. The Island County Auditor’s office is in the process of mailing out ballots to more than 36,000 voters who will decide whether to approve a $50-million bond that will pay for construction of a new wing at the island’s publicly owned hospital in Coupeville.
- Apr 23, 2011 at 9:00AM updated Apr 25, 2013 at 8:46AM
While a proposed new wing at Whidbey General Hospital will improve and modernize conditions, it won’t do much to increase capacity. If voters give the go-ahead to a $50 million bond, the new wing will house 39 single-patient rooms, which would replace the 34 beds in double rooms currently available at the publicly owned hospital in Coupeville.
- May 4, 2011 at 6:00AM updated at 10:30AM
A private health care company interested in purchasing or otherwise operating Whidbey General Hospital may confuse the $50-million expansion bond election now in progress. Hospital officials see little chance that the facility, beloved by many, will be sold, but worry that the unexpected brouhaha could affect how people vote.
- May 5, 2011 at 7:00AM updated at 10:16AM
John Koster has announced he'll take another shot at winning a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
- May 8, 2011 at 10:00AM
State Sen. Mary Margaret Haugen’s husband is asking a judge to dismiss a lawsuit that claims he sexually harassed and sexually assaulted his wife’s former campaign manager. The attorney for Basil Badley filed a motion for summary judgment in Island County Superior Court April 22; the motion asks the judge to dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice. The hearing on the motion is set for May 18.
- May 7, 2011 at 8:00AM
Last November, Oak Harbor police responded to a report that a Navy man was armed with a .40-caliber pistol and had threatened to “blow his own head off,” according to court documents.
- May 9, 2011 at 9:27AM
When Coupeville quilt artist Sharyn Mellors was selected as a semi-finalist in the 2011 American Quilter’s Society’s international Quilt Show and Contest in Peducah, Ky., she didn’t know she should have packed her rubber waders.
- May 10, 2011 at 4:00PM updated May 11, 2013 at 8:56AM
Whidbey Island residents turned in nearly 250 pounds of pills during a one-day, drug take-back program last month. The program, sponsored by the DEA and Whidbey law enforcement agencies, allows people to safely dispose of medication. It’s aimed at reducing the abuse of prescription pills while protecting the environment from potential pollutants.
- May 10, 2011 at 2:57PM
A milestone will be set with this weekend’s celebration of Whidbey Island’s Native American heritage. The Penn Cove Water Festival is marking its 20th consecutive year Saturday, May 14, with activities taking place throughout the Coupeville waterfront.
- May 10, 2011 at 3:00PM updated May 11, 2013 at 8:12AM
Well, at least they wore nice suits. Despite being dressed for success, leaders from Capella Healthcare didn’t have much to celebrate Monday night as the Whidbey General Hospital board of commissioners unanimously rejected a proposal to sell the hospital to the for-profit company. More than 100 skeptical people crammed into the hospital’s conference room and poured out into the hallway to hear the proposal from Capella Healthcare, a company based in Tennessee. The company owns 11 hospitals across the country.
- May 12, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 1:25PM
No matter how you slice it, the Island County general fund levy is low or the lowest when compared to other counties. Dan Jones, the levy analyst for the county assessor’s office, recently gave the county commissioners a PowerPoint presentation to address misconceptions about property taxes and rate comparisons. He looked at tax rates, taxes per capita and total levy amounts.
- May 14, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 3:04PM
The Oak Harbor Arts Commission will hold a special meeting Monday in the hopes of shoring up one of its Pioneer Way art recommendations before it’s vetted by the city council Tuesday night. The group will meet with Clinton bronze artist Georgia Gerber in an attempt to hammer out an actual proposal for a piece on Ireland Street. The meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. and will be held at City Hall.
- May 15, 2011 at 10:00AM
Voters have until Tuesday, May 17, to return their ballots on the $50 million bond proposed to fund expansion Whidbey General Hospital. Hospital officials want to build a new wing comprised of 39 single-bed rooms along with space to expand existing hospital programs. The bond requires a 60 percent supermajority to pass.
- May 15, 2011 at 7:00AM
It will cost to use Whidbey Island’s state parks and other state recreational lands beginning this summer. Gov. Christine Gregoire created a financial lifeline for Washington’s parks by signing the Discover Pass legislation into law May 12.
- May 16, 2011 at 10:47AM
Island County voters are staying true to history: Most voters have not yet mailed in their ballots for Tuesday's special election.
- May 17, 2011 at 8:49PM
The first count of ballots in Tuesday's special election suggests that it may be a relatively close call whether or not the $50-million bond proposal to expand Whidbey General hospital will pass. The majority of voters, just over 55.5 percent, cast ballots in favor of the measure, but it requires a 60-percent supermajority to pass. A total of 8,992 votes were in favor, while 7,208 were against the proposed bond.
- May 18, 2011 at 12:43PM
A large turnout on North Whidbey and in Oak Harbor — and lackluster support on Central Whidbey — appears to have doomed a $50 million expansion measure for Whidbey General Hospital, according to an analysis of early precinct returns in the May 17 special election.
- May 19, 2011 at 10:00AM updated at 4:29PM
Island County Fair officials announced an immediate closure of the horse arena and equestrian facilities at the county fairgrounds in Langley in light of the EHV-1 outbreak in the Western U.S.
- May 19, 2011 at 11:00AM updated May 20, 2013 at 9:01AM
The Seattle Men's Chorus will perform at 7 p.m. Saturday, June 4 in a fundraiser that will benefit Whidbey Island's nonprofit, Citizens Against Domestic & Sexual Abuse (CADA).
- May 19, 2011 at 3:55PM
Whidbey Island voters have rejected a $50 million expansion proposal to expand Whidbey General Hospital, according to a second tally of votes on Thursday afternoon.
- May 20, 2011 at 3:03PM
Things did not go well Wednesday afternoon for the attorney representing Island County Commissioner Kelly Emerson and her husband. Superior Court Judge Alan Hancock listened to arguments over a motion seeking to dismiss the Emersons’ lawsuit against the county. The couple’s attorney, Stephen Pidgeon of Everett, argued ardently about Fourth Amendment rights, but his legal analysis didn’t seem to have any sway with the judge.
- May 29, 2011 at 11:00AM
Whidbey Island’s deer are suffering from a type of baldness that can kill.