Business in Brief

  • Friday, September 26, 2008 6:33pm
  • Business

Yonkman wins Best of Show

Yonkman Construction won “Best of Show” honors in the fourth annual Home Tour Sept. 12 to 14 sponsored by the Skagit/Island Counties Builders Association.

The winning Yonkman-constructed home is located at 2294 Shore Avenue, Freeland, in the Useless Bay area.

The home scored the highest in overall points in eight categories including Best Kitchen, Master Bedroom, Master Bathroom, Interior Design, Floor Plan, Innovative Technology, Landscaping & Front Façade, and Curb Appeal.

According to a SCIBA news release, the judging was done by three community representatives not related to the building industry.

Carter joins Banner Bank

Banner Bank has added Real Estate Loan Officer Vicky (Lee) Carter to their team of banking professionals at the Oak Harbor Home Loan Center.

“Vicky is a great addition to our team,” said Jim Logghe, Banner Bank senior vice president and residential loan production manager. “Her extensive experience in the real estate industry will greatly benefit Banner and our customers.”

Carter brings over 12 years of experience to Banner Bank. Throughout her career she has developed a diversified background including extensive lending and title and escrow experience. Prior to joining Banner Bank, she worked as a home loan consultant for Countrywide Home Loans and as an Escrow Officer for Chicago Title Company.

Banner Corporation is the parent company of Banner Bank, a commercial bank that operates a total of 86 branch offices and 12 loan offices in 29 counties in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.

Cowboys love Greek Cuisine

Nadya Flynn, owner of Nadya’s Greek Cuisine in Oak Harbor, took her restaurant on the road to Ellensburg over the Labor Day weekend.

Her booth at the annual Ellensburg Rodeo proved to be hugely popular with the Central Washington cowboy crowd.

Three dignitaries and a group of rodeo representatives honored Flynn with a beautiful large ribbon for Best Food, Best Service and Best of Show. Of all the food vendors present, her booth made the best impression.

“They just love my food, and I and grateful!,” said Flynn.

Coldwell Banker honors Koetje

Coldwell Banker Corporation recently recognized both Coldwell Banker Koetje Real Estate Oak Harbor offices for their outstanding production. Each month Coldwell Banker recognizes their top offices nationally by office size. Koetje’s Highway Office located next to the Coachman Inn was recognized as the ninth highest production office out of 940 similar sized offices nationwide.

Koetje’s Pioneer Way Office was recognized as the 14th highest production office out of 563 similar sized offices.

Coldwell Banker Koetje Real Estate constantly ranks in the top 20 offices nationally based on office size for production, while no other Coldwell Banker offices in Washington consistently achieve these results.

Learn how to manage people

Skagit Valley College Business Resource Center in partnership with the Skagit-Island Human Resource Management Association will host a business seminar titled “Critical Links in People Management” on Tuesday, Oct. 7 at McIntyre Hall Performing Arts Center in Mount Vernon.

This event is designed to provide business owners, managers and human resource professionals with practical information and solutions on how to create, manage, and retain a skilled workforce.

To register for this seminar, visit for a registration form or call Joy Neal at 360-466-3352 for more information.

News-Times archives will go online

The entire historic archive of the Whidbey News-Times will eventually be made freely available online.

Google unveiled a project Tuesday with the aim of bringing historical newspaper content to the web. Sound Publishing, the News-Times’ parent company, is among the many companies participating in the project, which will allow users to view digitally scanned versions of historical newspapers.

“We’re very excited to bring the entire history of the News-Times to the web,” said Sound Publishing President Manfred Tempelmayr. “Projects of this scale are extremely time and resource intensive and we’re thrilled to partner with Google to make this available to our readers.”

The “initiative,” as it was described on The Official Google Blog, will appear as a function within Google’s News Archive feature.

No date has been announced for when the News-Times’ historical archives will appear. Its archives date back to the 19th century.

Deception bridges built to last

How long will the Deception Pass bridges last?

The Department of Transportation is responsible for maintaining the two bridges above Deception Pass and Canoe Pass along with 3,500 other bridges and structures around the state.

“We aggressively inspect and maintain these structures to keep our highways safe and these critical transportation links open for the public and commerce,” said WSDOT spokesperson Dave Chesson. “Our routine maintenance and inspections mean that the Deception Pass bridge will continue to be safe for you and your families now and into the future.”

The Deception Pass bridges are inspected and maintained on a regular basis. Every two years, the bridges are given a thorough inspection. Any changes in conditions and maintenance activities are carefully recorded.

The Deception Pass bridges were built in 1935.

“Is 73 really that old?” Chesson asked in a news release. “There are 226 other bridges on our state highways that are older.”

For comparison purposes, the WSDOT provides the following list:

207 years old: The White House

122 years old: The Statue of Liberty

125 years old: Brooklyn Bridge, New York

119 years old: Eiffel Tower

91 years old: The first Columbia River bridge on I-5

78 years old: Columbia Lewis and Clark bridge on SR 433

77 years old: George Washington Aurora Ave. bridge on SR 99

73 years old: Deception Pass bridges

71 years old: Bonneville Dam

71 years old: Golden Gate Bridge

With continued maintenance, the Deception Pass bridges will obviously last for many more years.

Good mileage, lower taxes

Purchases of new clean alternative fuel vehicles and hybrids that get at least 40 miles per gallon highway will be exempt from sales tax beginning Jan. 1.

The exemption was enacted by the Legislature in 2005 with a delayed effective date. The exemption is effective through Dec. 31, 2010. It includes the 0.3 percent motor vehicle sales tax.

Qualifying vehicles include new passenger cars, light duty trucks, and medium duty passenger vehicles that are powered by clean alternative fuels such as natural gas, propane, hydrogen or electricity; or use hybrid technology.

Any payment or deposit made toward the purchase of a qualifying vehicle before Jan. 1 still qualifies for the tax exemption as long as the vehicle is registered, titled, and delivered to the purchaser from Jan. l, 2009 through Dec. 31, 2010.

The exemptions also generally apply to leases and out-of-state purchases of new qualifying vehicles.  Purchases of new vehicles that the sellers convert into qualifying vehicles prior to or as part of the sale also qualify for the exemptions.

More information is available through a special notice sent to automobile dealers. The notice is available at

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