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THURSDAY, JANUARY 30, 2014

VOL. 19, NO. 26

Ledgewood Special election landslide still unstable By Nathan Whalen Staff Reporter

Homeowners still living near the massive landslide area in Ledgewood are wary as more pieces of the bluff continue to slough off. Ralph Young, a resident living near the landslide site, said a large piece of the bluff broke away last month. “We were concerned it’ll slide again,” Young said. Island County Public Works Director Bill Oakes said officials anticipated that more parts of the bluff would break off and that the debris field from the springtime landslide would remain unstable.

See LEDGEWOOD page 2

Coupeville sports makes move to new Support rallies for school levies vote conference

Nathan Whalen photo

Coupeville High School art teacher Tacy Bigelow waves signs at the corner of Main Street and Highway 20. She and other teachers were encouraging voters to support two levies that are on the ballot during a Feb. 11 special election.

By Jim Waller Staff Reporter

In search of a more level playing field for its athletic teams, Coupeville High School will leave the Cascade Conference and join the Olympic League next fall. Though the switch isn’t official (some procedural paperwork needs to be completed with the two leagues and the state), the move is a “done deal,” according to Coupeville High School Athletic Director Lori Stolee. Two years ago, primarily because of concerns with injuries to football players, Coupeville parents, coaches and administrators started looking for a more equitable situation for their athletes. Coupeville is the smallest school, by far, in enrollment in the Cascade Conference, and for years it and King’s were the only 1A schools in the eight-team league. The Cascade Conference, beginning

See CONFERENCE page 2

By Nathan Whalen Staff Reporter

Coupeville School District has two proposals on the Feb. 11 ballot. The first request is for renewal of the maintenance and operations levy, which will bring in $2.24 million each year for four years. That money accounts for nearly one quarter of the school district’s revenue, according to school district officials. It helps pay the salaries for teachers, paraeducators, a school nurse, counseling and library services. It also helps fund student transportation, sports and extracurricular activities and staff training. The second request, a technology levy, would provide the school district with $300,000 each year for the next four years to allow officials to continue upgrading the district’s computer systems. Voters first approved the technology levy four years ago. With that levy, school officials have purchased 738 devices over the past four years. Those devices include 313

iMacs, 197 iPads, 192 Chromebooks, displays, LCD projectors and a district-wide phone system that was recently installed. The phone system, which is Internet based, cost approximately $17,000. The dollars also paid for professional development for staff. “Coupeville is a wonderful community and they’ve been really good supporting the schools in the past,” said Christy Kellison, who is co-chairing the Friends of Coupeville Schools volunteer group with Susan Armstrong. Both measures have to pass by a 50 percent simple majority. If the measures are approved, a property owner in Central Whidbey would pay $1.302 per $1,000 assessed property value. A homeowner who has a $250,000 home would pay

$325.50 each year. Ballots went out to voters living within the school district boundaries last week. They have to be postmarked by Feb. 11 in order to be counted. Ballots can also be dropped off at the Island County Elections office on North Main Street. Kellison said volunteers have been busy posting signs in people’s yards and visiting community groups. People will be rallying at the corner of Main Street and State Highway 20 to encourage voters to support the levy. Levy supporters were seen Jan. 24 and will visit the busy corner Jan. 31 and again on Feb. 7.


Whidbey Examiner, January 30, 2014