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Mercer Island

Court rules two-thirds majority rule illegal

Barn raising

Graduation for the MIHS Class of 2012 Graduation for the Mercer Island High School Class of 2012 is at 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 7, at the Washington State Convention Center in downtown Seattle. Tickets are required and will not be sold at the door. For more information, contact the Mercer Island High School office at 236-3354.

King County judge rules requirement of two-thirds majority vote for new taxes unconstitutional

Jazz Jam at south Starbucks is June 10

The annual Mercer Island football auction will be held on Saturday, June 9, at the Mercer Island Community and Event Center. The dinner and auction is $100 per person and features a live and silent auction. Learn more at

Thrift shop looking for volunteers The Mercer Island Thrift Shop is recruiting both adult and youth volunteers to work a wide range of hours at the store at 7710 S.E. 34th Street. For additional information, contact Suzanne Philen at (206) 275-7760 or by email at suzanne.

Megan Managan/Staff Photo

Some old-fashioned manpower is used to raise framing into place at the new Aviara building across from Aljoya on 76th Avenue S.E.

State, local gas prices among highest in U.S. By Reporter Staff

On Monday morning, gas prices in Washington state were listed as the highest in the Lower 48 — just a few cents lower than what drivers pay in Alaska and Hawaii. Washington state prices reported by AAA on Monday were $4.275 per gallon. The average for the rest of the nation was $3.58 per gallon. Gas prices in Mercer Island and Bellevue on Monday were about $4.48 per gallon. With BP’s Cherry Point refinery just ramping up production again after a fire in February, gas prices should begin to fall, said Jennifer Cook, of AAA in Bellevue. Gas prices in the state actually fell slightly over the weekend, she added. Considering that BP’s Cherry Point refinery supplies nearly one-third of the gas

used in Washington state, it is no surprise that it affects gas prices here, Cook said. For Islanders wondering why gas prices in Mercer Island are higher from time to time than other nearby cities, Cook explained that gas suppliers use what they term as “zone pricing,” setting prices differently for certain areas. Shahin Eighani, who works at the Shell station at 78th Avenue S.E. and S.E. 29th Street said customers do comment on the higher prices, but seem resigned to paying more. “This morning I had a customer say the gas price is too high, but no one cares because they need to drive their cars. What can we do?” Eighani said. Cook noted that despite the higher prices, gas station own-

ers or operators make the least amount of any part of the entire process — from drilling to refining to distribution. She said that the suppliers do not share information on those zones — where they are and how the differences in price are established. The price of fueling buses with both diesel and unleaded fuels has gone up dramatically. Todd Kelsay, Director of Transportation for the Mercer Island School District estimates that what he pays for fuel has gone up more than 100 percent over a year ago. The increase has occurred despite the fact that the district obtains its fuel through a statenegotiated contract. Kelsay said he pays the lowest possible price for fuel. The district uses 20,000 gallons of diesel each year, Kelsay said. “Unlike in the past, diesel is now more expensive than unleaded, going for around $4 a gallon. The district also spends $15,000

A King County Superior Court judge ruled Wednesday that the rule which requires the state Legislature to have a two-thirds majority in order to raise taxes is unconstitutional. Judge Bruce Heller ruled on Wednesday after a case was brought to the court by several local groups, as well as private citizens. The statute, which was passed by voters in the form of Initiative

Two-thirds | Page 2


Football auction Saturday, June 9

By Megan Managan

Mercer Island

The Mercer Island Jazz Program will present a Summer Jazz Jam at the South end Starbucks on Sunday, June 10, from 2 to 4 p.m. Students from high school jazz bands will perform standards, and some notable alumni will join in. These include singer Gennie Gebhart, pianist Leeran Raphaely, flutist Lauren Asimakoupoulos and guitarist Ben Fang, all of the class of 2009, and bassist Zach Hartmann, of the class of 2011. Music will be provided for anyone else who would like to come and play or sing.

One year $39, two years just $59


Wednesday, June 6, 2012 | 75¢

Serving the Mercer Island community since 1947

SUBSCRIBE call (253) 872-6610

Gas | Page 9


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Mercer Island Reporter, June 06, 2012  
Mercer Island Reporter, June 06, 2012  

June 06, 2012 edition of the Mercer Island Reporter