BREAKING NEWS — Student who allegedly made Hazen bomb threat arrested

February 12, 2010

UPDATED — 5:04 p.m. Feb. 12, 2010

An 18-year-old Hazen High School senior was arrested this afternoon after allegedly calling in a bomb threat to the high school Renton Police and Renton School District officials say.

The student has not yet been charged, officials said.

Hazen High School received a call at about 10:45 this morning from an individual who claimed there was a bomb inside the school and that students and staff had one hour to evacuate the building.

School officials followed Renton School District Guidelines by calling police and evacuating the building. Renton Police searched the building, but did not find anything. After allowing the hour to elapse, students and staff re-entered the school at noon.

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Issaquah school levies, King County library measure lead in latest election results

February 11, 2010

NEW — 10:40 a.m. Feb. 11, 2010

Celebration was in the air as Issaquah School District officials gathered to welcome election results Tuesday.

The celebration continued Wednesday: Results released at 4:30 p.m. showed district ballot measures leading with 64 percent for a maintenance and operations levy, 63 percent for a transportation levy and 64 percent for a technology and repairs levy.

If the measures pass as expected, taxpayers would pay $4.81 for every $1,000 of assessed property for the levies and the remainder of the 2006 bond.

Levy supporters gathered Tuesday night to await early results. As the numbers appeared on the King County Elections Web site just after 8 p.m., sighs of relief, high fives and victory cries erupted from partygoers.

Superintendent Steve Rasmussen thanked voters for their support.

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Meeting for communitywide Haiti fundraiser is tonight

February 9, 2010

UPDATED — 4:19 p.m. Feb. 9, 2010

McKnight Middle School teacher Dave Black is organizing a March 5 communitywide spaghetti dinner and silent auction in the McKnight commons to benefit the victims of the Haiti earthquake.

However, he needs volunteers, and he is hosting a meeting in the McKnight commons at 7 p.m. tonight for anybody interested in helping out.

Black said he needs volunteers to seek items for the silent auction and help the night of the event.

The dinner is not affiliated with the school. Tickets will be $15 each, although children younger than 6 are free. All proceeds will go to the American Red Cross.

Call Black at 425-221-7149 or e-mail him at for more information about how to volunteer.

Newcastle Transit Center adds Metro routes

February 9, 2010

NEW — 10 a.m. Feb 9, 2010

King County Metro Transit routes 240 and 114 added the Newcastle Transit Center to their routes Feb. 6.

Route 240 runs between Renton and Clyde Hill in Bellevue, and it runs between about 5 a.m. and midnight on weekdays, stopping at the transit center about every 30 minutes. Buses run every 30 minutes from about 7 a.m. to midnight on Saturdays, and every hour from about 8 a.m. to midnight on Sundays.

Route 114 runs from the Renton Highlands to downtown Seattle on weekdays only. Buses on this route only travel to Seattle in the mornings and to the Renton Highlands in the evenings. Buses will stop at the transit center about every 30 minutes from about 5:50-8 a.m. en route to Seattle and from about 4:50-6:20 p.m. en route to the Renton Highlands.

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Newcastle Elementary School principal to leave in June

February 8, 2010

NEW — 10:54 a.m. Feb. 8, 2010

Newcastle Elementary Principal Christy Otley recently announced that she will transfer to Grand Ridge Elementary School in the Issaquah Highlands at the end of the school year.

Otley, who has been at Newcastle Elementary since it opened, announced the news in a letter.

“For the past six years, this school community has been such a family to me,” Otley wrote in her resignation letter. “I am following an important life lesson that we try to teach all of our students: Challenge and change are often necessary for growth and fresh perspectives.”

Issaquah School District officials created a survey to help in selecting a new principal for Newcastle Elementary. Take the survey here. Complete the survey by 4 p.m. Feb. 23.

Laughing all the way: There’s no business like snow business

February 5, 2010

By this time last year, we had been battered by multiple snowstorms. That was when The Sainted One and I discovered that we were in decent enough shape to slide to downtown Newcastle from our perch in Olympus, buy a 12-pack of beer, stow it in our backpacks and trudge back up the hill to our house. Read more

Newcastle City Manager John Starbard fired

February 4, 2010

Former community development director named as replacement

John Starbard

Rob Wyman

At a special City Council meeting Jan. 12, the council voted 6-1 to terminate City Manager John Starbard’s contract without cause, effective immediately. The only dissenting vote was Councilman Sonny Putter.

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Sworn in

February 4, 2010

From left, Councilmen Rich Crispo, Bill Erxleben and John Dulcich are sworn into office Jan. 5. Dulcich was later appointed as mayor, and Councilman Steve Buri was appointed as deputy mayor. Dulcich and Buri will serve in their respective positions for two years. By Tim Pfarr

Newcastle City Council budget cuts top $1 million

February 4, 2010

The City Council cut $1.02 million from the 2010 budget during meetings last month. Of that amount, about $820,000 was cut from the 2010 capital budget, and about $206,000 was cut from the operating budget.

Before altering the budget, the city was facing a $363,000 budget shortfall. Councilman Bill Erxleben said the City Council is not yet finished working on the budget. Read more

Talks began in December regarding new city manager

February 4, 2010

Talks regarding firing City Manager John Starbard and appointing former Community Development Director Rob Wyman as interim city manager began privately in December.

While councilmen-elect John Dulcich, Bill Erxleben and Rich Crispo said they had been in favor of making changes to the city’s management, Erxleben specifically sought out Wyman in December as a candidate for interim city manager. Read more

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