Newcastle in line for Lake Boren grant

August 29, 2014

The city of Newcastle is in line to receive a $225,000 King County Flood Control District grant that will help ease flooding at Lake Boren.

The district’s executive committee recommended Aug. 18 that Newcastle receive a portion of $2.6 million in grants available from a newly created program aimed at reducing the impact of local flooding.

“This grant funding will allow the city of Newcastle to address longstanding flooding issues dating back prior to the city’s incorporation,” Reagan Dunn, King County Councilman representing Newcastle and chairman of the King County Flood Control District, said in a news release.

The city of Newcastle’s Lake Boren flooding mitigation project will receive $255,000 to improve the outlet channel by clearing and removing any overflow blockages at Boren Creek. Read more

Editorial

July 31, 2014

Be responsible with your marijuana

Marijuana.

No matter how you feel about it, it’s now legal to purchase and smoke it in the state of Washington. (Leave it to officials to sort out the federal vs. state issue, though at this point, no one has announced plans to crack down on people who take a toke.)

And although there is not a local place to make a purchase, and there won’t be one in Newcastle anytime soon as a result of the City Council’s recent moratorium, 24 retailers in the Puget Sound area were granted licenses in early July by the state Liquor Control Board.

A majority of voters wanted marijuana, and now we all have it. In order to turn that initiative and vote into a real win, people must be responsible with their pot. Read more

Energize Eastside concerns shared

July 31, 2014

Energize Eastside was back on the Newcastle City Council agenda for the first time since Puget Sound Energy introduced the project April 1.

But this time, it was a pair of resident groups who had the opportunity to voice their concerns about the plan to bring new, higher capacity electric transmission lines to the Eastside in response to the region’s growing power demands.

The Olympus Homeowners Association and the Coalition of Eastside Neighborhoods for Sensible Energy countered PSE’s proposal and questioned the project’s true requirement at the July 1 and 15 City Council meetings. Read more

Newcastle plans National Night Out events

July 31, 2014

Newcastle will join cities across the country to celebrate National Night Out Aug. 5.

The event aims to heighten crime prevention awareness, strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships, and send a message to criminals about neighborhoods organized against criminal activity.

National Night Out is celebrated with neighborhood block parties, often visited by local law enforcement.

The Donegal Park neighborhood event begins at 5:30 p.m. at Donegal Park, 7319 125th Ave. S.E. Neighbors are encouraged to bring folding chairs and food for grilling on the park’s barbeque, said event coordinator Lorinda Ecklund. Read more

Council passes marijuana moratorium

July 31, 2014

Newcastle residents won’t find a marijuana retail establishment in the city anytime soon.

The Newcastle City Council approved a six-month moratorium on marijuana-related business activity within Newcastle, at its July 1 meeting.

“A moratorium is simply a procedural mechanism this council can adopt to literally hold the status quo as is, meaning, it gives you six months to review something,” city attorney Dawn Reitan told council members. “Nothing comes in while that happens.”

Councilman Gordon Bisset made the motion instituting the moratorium. It passed 4-3, with council members Lisa Jensen, Carol Simpson and Rich Crispo dissenting. Read more

Newcastle City Council roundup — July 1

July 2, 2014

NEW — 3 p.m. July 2, 2014

The Newcastle City Council held its first meeting of the month July 1. Here is the Cliffs Notes version of what happened at City Hall. View the full meeting agenda online here and listen to the full meeting audio here.

Energize Eastside

Energize Eastside was back on the agenda for the first time since Puget Sound Energy’s April 1 presentation to the City Council.

This time, a citizen group had the chance to offer their own presentation about the project, in response the region’s growing power demands, which will bring new, higher capacity electric transmission lines to the Eastside. Read more

Citizen groups to present about Energize Eastside

July 2, 2014

Andy Wappler, Puget Sound Energy’s vice president of corporate affairs, spoke about the company’s Energize Eastside project at the April 1 Newcastle City Council meeting.

Now, it’s the citizens’ turn to give their own presentations about the project. Newcastle resident Keith Hargis and the Olympus Homeowners Association offered their thoughts at the July 1 meeting.

Read more

Public works director leaving for North Bend

June 5, 2014

By Christina Corrales-Toy Mark Rigos, outgoing Newcastle Public Works director, with his son Alexander, speaks at the May Creek Trail ribbon-cutting ceremony Sept. 15.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
Mark Rigos, outgoing Newcastle Public Works director, with his son Alexander, speaks at the May Creek Trail ribbon-cutting ceremony Sept. 15.

Newcastle Public Works Director Mark Rigos has only worked with the city for three years, but his impact on the community is so great that when he announced his resignation, at least one resident became emotional at the thought of losing him. Read more

Summer events lined up

June 5, 2014

Fireworks will again grace the Newcastle skies this Fourth of July, and this time for more than a few minutes.

Attendees at last year’s Independence Day celebration at Lake Boren Park will remember that technical difficulties shortened what was supposed to be a 12-minute fireworks display.

The Olympia-based company Entertainment Fireworks Inc. took full responsibility for the problems, City Manager Rob Wyman said last year. Newcastle will contract with the company again for its 2014 fireworks show, with assurances the issues won’t occur again.

“I have spoken with the owner multiple times on the phone and he has assured me 200 percent that we will not have the problem again,” said Wendy Kirchner, Newcastle’s community activities liaison. “They’ve got a very, very experienced pyrotechnician that’s going to be working with us.” Read more

Candidates file for public office, August primary

June 5, 2014

Local voters will have to choose candidates in an August primary.

King County candidate filing week ended May 16 with more than two applicants in a race for the local Congressional representative.

U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (D-9th) seeks re-election against three challengers, one of which should be very familiar to Newcastle voters.

Former Newcastle resident Mark Greene, who last year unsuccessfully ran for Newcastle City Council, is one of the candidates who hope to unseat Smith. Greene now lives in Federal Way. Democrat Don Rivers and Republican Doug Basler also filed for the 9th Congressional seat. Read more

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