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Better days ahead for Turtleback’s Garry oaks page 3

Scene

Beeswax earns top bill at IMA ‘Encaustic’ exhibit page 11

Editorial

You don’t need to be a Lottery winner to contribute to the cause; United Way’s ‘Day of Caring’ page 7

Journal

The 75¢ Wednesday, September 5, 2012 Vol. 105 Issue 36

of the San Juan Islands

Six new groups receive a slice

www.sanjuanjournal.com

Wild, wild ‘Western Day’ Disliked by all Update of CAO wetland, wildlife sections draws criticism from right and from left

SJC Parks wins lion’s share of LTAC facilities fund, $133K

By Steve Wehrly Journal reporter

By Steve Wehrly Journal Reporter

“Pennies from Heaven” might be the theme song for the 2013 lodging tax facilities awards approved by the County Council at its Aug. 28 meeting. Except that more than pennies were showered on the recipients. The money — $350,000 to be distributed in 2013 — comes from a 2-percent state tax imposed as a sales tax add-on for overnight stays in the county. Another two percent tax is used for “tourist promotion,” currently under contract with the San Juan Islands Visitor’s Bureau, to be awarded later this year. Friday Harbor receives similar, though lesser, amounts for lodging taxes collected in the town. The county’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee recommended allocations to 13 projects out of 28 applicants seeking funding. County Councilman Jamie Stephens, the council liaison to the advisory committee, advocated on behalf of the committee recommendations. “The LTAC works very hard to stay within state law and county policies,” Stephens said. “This is my first year in this role for the council, and I’m happy the comSee LODGING, Page 5

Journal photo / Roxanne Angel

The crowd topped 500 as parents, students, friends and family joined in Friday Harbor Elementary School’s ‘Western Day’, a kick-off celebration for the 2012-2013 school year.

Thicker than water

See CAO, Page 4

San Juan Island’s Lee Brewer holds up a copy of a photo of his great-nephew, Nick Thoman, silver medal Olympic winner in the 100-meter backstroke.

By Scott Rasmussen Journal editor

Aviator. Artist. Actor. Sailor. Author. Classic car aficionado. Lee Brewer is a man of action, a quintessential Renaissance man, and perhaps the last person on the planet that one would expect to find living vicariously through the achievements of others. Still, it’s not everyday one has family competing in the Olympics, and rarer yet when that relative, even if somewhat distant, wins a medal. So, it’s perhaps no surprise that even the “always-hassomething-going-on” Brewer, at

If the San Juan County Council needed proof they are making nobody happy with their critical areas ordinance update, they got that proof at public hearings on Aug. 21. Opponents and proponents, the planning staff and all six council members insist they want to protect both environmental values and property rights, but neither the environmentalists nor the defenders of property rights are

Fall Sports Preview

Journal photo / Scott Rasmussen

age 88, found himself “glued to the screen” and “rooting him on”, as his great-nephew, Nick Thoman, rounded the turn and headed for home in the finals of the 100meter backstroke, an event in which he holds the world record (48.94 sec., 2009).

“I guess I was a little disappointed when I saw his name flash across the screen in second place,” Brewer said. “He’s the world record-holder in that event. I was hoping for gold.” Thoman finished a close secSee BREWER, Page 4

2011 Special Award; Second Place: General Excellence from the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association

Get a taste of the season ahead in the Journal’s high school fall sports preview; stories, team photos, schedules, and more


Journal of the San Juans, September 05, 2012