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Guest column

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County news

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VOLUME 37, NUMBER 10 • MARCH 11, 2014

Courtroom crusader calls it quits By Steve Wehrly Journal reporter

For the first time in 36 years, Charles Silverman says, “I have no plans.” Except for getting to know Deborah, his wife, a bit better, he quipped. That came in response to a comment by his boss, Prosecutor Randy Gaylord, who noted a famous quote by Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story, “The law is a jealous mistress and requires a long and constant courtship.” A crowd of 40-plus filled the hallway on the first floor of the county courthouse to hear friends and colleagues praise Silverman’s career and wish him well in retirement. Gaylord reminisced that Silverman, the county’s chief deputy prosecutor, was his first hire after being elected prosecuting attorney in 1994. By that time Silverman had already worked as an

assistant prosecutor in four counties, including seven years in San Juan County for Gene Knapp before seven years’ service in Gray’s Harbor and Mason counties. “He was a mentor and teacher for me, and a tireless advocate for justice,” Gaylord said. Friday Harbor attorney Steve Brandli, who worked with Silverman in the prosecutor’s office, said he was a model lawyer: “He embodies everything I want to be as a lawyer.” Former Sheriff Bill Cumming said that he owes a lot to Silverman. “He pointed me in the right direction when I started in 1980 and I was thrilled when he returned in 1994,” Cumming said. “You can’t calculate the benefits he had to the sheriff’s office. He always pushed us, made sure that all the questions were asked, sometimes more

Contributed photo

Deputy Prosecutor Charlie Silverman.

than once.” In addition to a dogged tenacity and unwavering work ethic, Cumming said that Silverman will long be remembered for the compassion that he brought to the job, a quality that endeared him to his many colleagues and to the community as well. Silverman was involved in every “big case” in San Juan County over the last 20 years. In a letter to the

Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorney nominating Silverman for the President’s Award of the association, Gaylord listed the cases: the Ruth Neslund murder trial, which inspired an Ann Rule book; the State vs. Christensen case which established the privacy rights of cordless phone use and was included in a book by Bill O’Reilly; the Beanie Babies case, one of the first Internet fraud cases; the Waldron Island marijuana case featured nationally in the media; and the prosecution of Colton Harris-Moore, the Barefoot Bandit. Silverman, however, doesn’t count the “big cases” or his many other victories as “best memories.” “What I’ll remember most is coming to work every

day with people who care, who want to do the right thing every day,” he said in his remarks to the group of well-wishers. Silverman’s successor as county criminal prosecutor, Emma Scanlan, leaves behind the criminal defense practice of highprofile Seattle lawyer John Henr y Browne. Browne and Scanlan, a 2006 graduate of the University of Washington law school, defended Colton HarrisMoore and, more recently, Robert Bales, the U.S. soldier who was just sentenced to life in prison without chance of parole for killing 16 civilians in Afghanistan. Gaylord presented Silverman with two parting gifts. One, an elaborate large keepsake quilt sewn by Camolyn Armstrong and Colleen Kenimond with a hundred squares of material signed by l00 of Silverman’s friends and

colleagues. The other, a drawing by Milt Prigge showing Silverman, an accomplished pianist, playing and singing for “Lady Justice” in a scene harkening back to a famous photo of President Harry S. Truman tickling the ivories for Lauren Bacall. Silverman’s last day on the job is Friday, March 14, but friends and colleagues know he won’t simply disappear. “I’m already missing him, thinking about how the void will be filled,” said Juvenile Court Administrator Tom Kearney of their 30-year working relationship. “But I get a smile on my face just thinking about what he’ll be doing in the future.” A smile that Charles Silverman, the man with “no plans,” shares. -- Journal editor Scott Rasmussen contributed to this report.

A look at current use tax assessments By Steve Wehrly Journal reporter

Four property tax breaks for agricultural, timber and “open space” have recently become an issue for voters, the County Council, San Juan County Assessor Charles Zalmanek and the Washington State legislature.


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The tax breaks are important to the property owners, especially the growing number of small farmers in the county trying to make a living from agriculture or forestry. Both the assessor and the county council are clear that they don’t want

Home & Garden April 2014 Providing a full schedule of activites and events plus, informative feature stories. This special section of The Journal, The Sounder, & The Weekly will be distributed to over 7500 readers throughout San Juan County and also online in our new Green Editions!

Copy & Sales Deadline: Monday, March 31, 2014, 12 pm Publication Dates: Week of April 15, 2014 For more information call Cali Bagby at the Islands’ Weekly 376-4500

to make things more difficult for small farmers. The four tax programs reduce the property tax assessment on land from the usual fair market value of the property to the current use value for agricultural, forestry or simple “open space.” These tax preferences were enacted by the people in 1968, when a whopping 68 percent of the voters approved the Open Space Taxation Amendment to Ar ticle VII of the Washington Constitution. The constitutional amendment was succinct, self-explanator y and far reaching: “[F]arms, agricultural lands, standing timber and timberlands, and other open space lands used for recreation or enjoyment of their scenic or natural beauty, shall be valued for purposes of taxation on the

basis of the use to which such proper ty currently is being applied, rather than on the highest and best use.” The implementing statute, Chapter 84.34 of the Revised Code of Washington, is neither succinct nor self-explanatory, which has resulted in the tension between the Assessor and the County Council. The tax benefits from the programs are generous. The “current use” value of agriculture land in San Juan County is only 4.6 percent of the fair market value of that land. The property taxes on land in the timber programs are calculated on an even lower average current use value - only six-tenths of one percent of the fair market value. Of the 110,142 acres of properties in San Juan County, only some 56,000 SEE TAX, PAGE 5

Community Calendar TUES, MARCH 11 MEETING: Enchanted Quilters, 9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m., Woodmen Hall. Join us to learn paper piecing. Coffee, tea, & goodies at 9:30 a.m. Meeting begins at 10 a.m. WEDS, MARCH 12 OUTDOORS: Sugar Bear Buddies, 10 - 11 a.m., Meets at Lopez Library. Seeking like minded individuals as walking buddies, to get healthy and fit, to share

Lopez Island AA Meetings:

Mondays - 7:30 p.m. at the Children’s Center Wednesdays - 4 p.m. Women’s meeting at the fellowship hall at Grace Episcopal Church Fridays - 7:30 p.m. at the Children’s Center Saturdays - noon at the Children’s Center Call 468-2809

and be encouraged--and to have a lot of fun and times of celebration in the process. Check with your physician before beginning any exercise program. Wear appropriate clothing and shoes for walking. For info, call Deborah at 468-3528 This group is ongoing.

THURS, MARCH 13 MEETING: The Lopez Island Garden Club, Coffee & Goodies at 9:30 a.m.,

the meeting begins at 10 a.m., Woodmen Hall on Fisherman Bay Road. This month in lieu of a speaker we’re inviting all Lopez gardeners to bring their best ‘top secret’ garden tool, book, plant, or project to share with others. In return you’ll get lots of great tried and true ideas from fellow Lopezians.

SUN, MARCH 16 ART: A dramatic reading of The Unspeakable, 7 p.m., Lopez Center for Community and the Arts. MON, MARCH 17 FOOD: St. Patrick’s Day Dinner. Corned beef and cabbage dinner, to go dinners pickup between 3:30 & 4:15 p.m. Seatings start at 4:30 and 6 p.m.,

Woodmen Hall. Cost: $12 for adults, $20 for two and $10 for age 60 and over. MEETING: LCLT Board Meeting, 4 - 6 p.m. LCLT office (25 Tuatara Road).

FRI, MARCH 21 ART: Lopez Center Community Performance Night “Dance and Music for all Seasons,” 7:30 a.m., Lopez Center. Admission by donation. LESSONS: Free golf lessons for kids 12 - 18, 3 - 5 p.m. - noon, Lopez Island Golf Club. Sign up with Richard Tetu at Lopez Island High School or contact Joyce Kruithof at 468-4992. SAT, MARCH 22 EVENT: Contra Dance, 7:30

a.m., Lopez Center. Live French Canadian music to dance to. Playing the dance is Les Trois Capitaines (Devon Leger on fiddle & feet, Eric Schlorff on accordian, harmonica & feet, and Clyde Curley on guitar), Carol Piening will be teaching and calling all of the dances. No partner needed and all ages are welcome. LESSONS: Free golf lessons for kids 12 - 18, 8:30 a.m. - noon, Lopez Island Golf Club. Sign up with Richard Tetu at Lopez Island High School or contact Joyce Kruithof at 468-4992.

THURS, MARCH 27 FOOD: Evening Meal, 5:30 - 7 p.m., Lopez School MultiPurpose Room. Lopez

SAT, MARCH 29 MEETING: Lopez Community Fireworks Dinner and Auction, 5:30 - 9:30 p.m., Woodmen Hall. Come for a tasty dinner and bid on some of the donated items at both live and silent auction. Dinner will be country/southern pit barbecue by pit masters Denny and Jeff. Tickets for dinner are $25.00. Tickets may be purchased at Islands Marine Center, Paper Scissors on the Rock, and online @

Fundraising for new firing equipment for fireworks Submitted by the Lopez Community Fireworks Committee

Save the night of March 29 for the Lopez Community Fireworks annual dinner and auction. Come to Woodmen Hall, Lopez

Island, for a tasty dinner and bid on some of the 28-plus donated items at both live and silent auction. Dinner will be country/ southern pit barbecue by pit masters Denny and

Carol Weiss, MA Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

Adult and Senior Psychotherapy

Lopez Island Al-Anon:

Jeff. Beer will be from Boundary Bay Brewing in Bellingham, wine and margaritas will also be available. Tickets for dinner are $25. Tickets may be purchased at Islands Marine Center, Paper Scissors on the Rock, and online at The new 2014 fireworks T-shirts will go on sale at the auction. This year we want to fin-

Parent Guidance Jungian Dreamwork

Saturdays - 9:30 a.m. at the Children’s Center, Lopez. Call 468-4703.

Mindfulness Psychology 468-3571 35 years experience Zen meditation and mindfulness practitioner UW Geriatric Mental Health Certificate

ish the final phase of our firing system upgrade. For those of you not familiar with the need for the new firing equipment, it is because of heightened safety requirements and on going materials unavailability. Over the years we have grown to be one of the largest all volunteer fireworks shows in the country. The traditional fuse based timing and direct connection electrical firing require the volunteers to be in close proximity to the actual fireworks during the show, too close for modern safety standards. This problem has been

Lopez Business Hours Galley Restaurant Open at 8 a.m. Full menu until at least 8 p.m. every night Short-list menu after 8 p.m. Fresh, Local, Fantastic 468-2713

Locavores invites the community to celebrate spring with a delicious meal made with fresh, organic Lopez grown food.  Pay what you can.

Lopez Islander

Lunch: Friday, Saturday and Sunday 11:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Dinner: 4:30 - 8 p.m. Sunday 4:30 - 9 p.m. Monday - Saturday

The Love Dog Cafe Southend Restaurant Closed March 10 through March 26 for repair and spring cleaning

Good Affordable Food / Great Sports Lounge Specials

Like us on Facebook 468-2233 468-2150


360.378.5696 Roxanne Angel Editor 360.376.4500 Cali Bagby Circulation Manager 360.376.4500 Nicole Matisse Duke Display Advertising 360.376.4500 Cali Bagby

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The Islands’ Weekly • • March 11, 2014 – Page 2

Mon-Wed 11-2 Thurs-Sat 11-8 Sun-CLOSED Beer-Wine-Great Food Delicious Baked Goods Daily Specials Come Down to the South End  & See What's Cookin'! Southend General Store Mon-Fri 7-7 Sat 8-7 Sun 9-5 southendgeneralstore


Graphic Designers 360.378.5696 Scott Herning, ext. 4054 Kathryn Sherman, ext. 4050 Classified Advertising 800-388-2527 Mailing/Street Address PO Box 758, Eastsound, WA 98245 Phone: (360) 378-5696 Fax: (888) 562-8818 Classifieds: (800) 388-2527

exacerbated in recent years by new restrictions on explosive device components. The timing fuse that we use to synchronize the shells is no longer available to us. We will run out of the present supply of fuse after next year’s show at our present rate of use without completing our new firing system. This year we purchased and used about one half of the new firing system. We are pleased to report that it functioned as planned. We are now about half way to our fund raising goal of $15,000 to finish the firing system thanks to the generous donations of our supporters. Please come out to our dinner and auction and help us get the new firing system in place for this years show.

The Bay Dinner: Wed.-Sun. 5pm to 9pm Lunch: Sat. & Sun. opening at 12pm

environmentally sound

We invite you for lunch, dinner, appetizers and drinks or food to go and we never close early! 468-3700

Copyright 2012. Owned and published by Sound Publishing Co. Periodicals postage paid at Friday Harbor, Wash. and at additional mailing offices. Annual subscription rates: In County: $52/ year, $28/6 months. For convenient mail delivery, call 360-376-4500. The Islands’ Weekly was founded in 1982 and is based on Lopez Island. The Islands’ Weekly is published every Tuesday and is mailed to homes and businesses in the San


Juan Islands. Postmaster: Send address changes to The Islands’ Weekly, PO Box 758 Eastsound, WA 98245-0758. Member of Washington Newspaper Publishers Association, National Newspaper Association.

Guest Column

Three-step fix for ferry system By Kevin Ranker Special to the Weekly

The level of unpredictability and lack of ferry service in recent months is unacceptable. As a frequent ferry commuter myself, I share the frustration other riders have with the inconsistent and uneven service. I also agree that the responsibility for this lies not as much with Washington State Ferries, but right here in Olympia. The problem is that Olympia treats our ferry system differently than the rest of our state’s transportation system. That mentality is the first thing that must change. In addition to that, there are three steps that Olympia must take to make a noticeable difference in our ferry system. First, we must pass Rep. Jeff Morris’ bill to build a third new 144-car ferry. I am championing this effort in the Senate. There have been efforts to divert the money in the bill from construction of a third vessel to operations, but we have been successful so far in keeping the bill focused on construction

of the third 144-car vessel. Know that I will work every angle I can to make this bill and this boat a reality. The second key to a fully functioning and sustainable ferry system in the San Juans is to make sure that one of the three new 144-car ferries is permanently dedicated to the San Juan route. I am proud to have led the effort in the Senate two and three years ago to secure funding to build the first and second new 144-car ferries. While the first boat is dedi-

Kevin Ranker cated elsewhere, the second boat is supposed to come to the San Juans for the spring, summer and fall when it is completed in late 2015. I am working with our state Transpor tation Secretary Lynn Peterson to make absolutely sure that boat remains in service to the San Juans year-round by the end of 2015. This is critical if we are to have more reliable service. Securing the third new 144-car vessel

CenturyLink is working on service reliability The following was submitted by CenturyLinka

CenturyLink, Inc. as part of its ongoing commitment to its customers in San Juan County, is actively working to provide network redundancy. This redundancy will allow voice, Internet, E911 and other critical services to be rerouted onto other facilities to maintain service in theDoing event business of a fiber cut within the islands. without advertising During the week of Feb. doing exercise 17,is like CenturyLink began phase inone of providing the dark… redundancy from Friday Harbor to East Sound and knowCenturyLink what LopezYou Island. accomplishing is you’re increasing the capacity on the fiber isoptic but existing no one else network between Mount


Constitution and East Sound to support the new microwave radio system that will be installed from Friday Harbor to Mount Constitution. “CenturyLink is focused on our customers’ safety and service reliability in San Juan County,” said Tim Grigar, CenturyLink

Spring Tide

• 2014-15• Islands’ Weekly ’ Sounder and Islands, Islands of the San Juan The Journal Published by Cover painting

Call Cali Bagby today! 376-4500

vice president and general manager for western Washington. “We understand how important it is for our customers to have a reliable redundant path in the event of damage to the primary network. We will continue to communicate our progress as the work continues.”

by Beth Hetrick

60,000 uted to Distrib Each Year! s Visitor

will help make this a reality as that boat can support needs elsewhere in the system in the winter. The third issue we must tackle is a transportation revenue package. We can build all the new boats we want, but if we don’t have the money to operate them, we will still have poor service and increasing fares. Currently, transportation is one of several political footballs being kicked around the capital. It’s cliché to say it, but there are no Republican roads and there are no Democratic bridges. We all depend on our transportation system and any solution for an issue of this magnitude will have to be of the bipartisan variety. Unfortunately, a transportation revenue package cannot happen without revenue and there are some that argue that we cannot raise taxes, no matter what the cost. I would argue that ferries will continue to break and bridges will continue to fall until we have a bold and thoughtful discussion that creates a new revenue package to support our state’s transportation infrastructure. David Moseley, Assistant Transportation Secretary and the man in charge of ferries, pointed out correct-

ly in the Journal recently that the funds allocated by the legislature since 2000 are not enough to adequately operate our state’s ferry system. I would go further and say that our entire state’s transportation infrastructure is woefully lacking and upgrading it is not only a matter of commerce and transportation, it is a matter of public safety. If we were to pass a transportation revenue package, we could not only have a third ferry, but we would be able to backfill ferry operations and capital accounts so that we have a sustainable and reliable ferry system.

I cannot stress enough the good this would do for our state. As politicians, we should not be afraid of thoughtfully discussing revenues and taxes in an election year, we should be afraid of what will happen if we don’t. It’s time to put politics aside and get this job done. — Editor’s note: State Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, represents the 40th District, which, in addition to San Juan and portions of Skagit and Whatcom counties, includes the cities of Anacortes, Bellingham, Burlington and Mount Vernon.

March Madness Open an Islands Connection Checking and Savings Account between March 3rd and March 31st and you will be entered into our sweepstakes to receive $500.* *$100 initial deposit is required for both Islands Connection Checking and Savings Account. An excess transaction charge of $3 per item will be assessed for any transaction exceeding six transfers from your savings account each statement cycle. Minimum monthly transfer of $25 is required. Customers that currently have a connection checking/savings product will automatically receive one (1) sweepstakes entry. Employees of Islanders Bank, its affiliates, and subsidiaries are not eligible for this offer. No purchase necessary to enter. To enter manually, submit your name, address, and home telephone number to any Islanders Bank Branch listed below. All entries must be received by March 31, 2014. Winner will be determined by a random drawing conducted on April 4, 2014.


Ad Sales Deadline: Glossy: April 1, 12 pm; Non-Glossy: April 22, 12 pm Publication Dates: May 21, 2014 For more information call Cali Bagby at the Islands’ Weekly 376-4500

For all details please contact us or visit a retail specialist at any one our three locations. Friday Harbor Branch 360-378-2265

Lopez Island Branch 360-468-2295


Islanders Bank

Orcas Island Branch 360-376-2265

The Islands’ Weekly • • March 11, 2014 – Page 3

What was really happening in America? By Gretchen Wing Special to the Weekly

Malcolm X. JFK. MLK. Bobby. Three calendar years. Four devastating assassinations. What was really happening in America? What lessons have we still to learn? On Sunday, March 16, 7 p.m. at the Community Center, Lopez Community Theater and KLOI present “The Unspeakable,” a dramatic reading based on a documented account of the assassinations of John Kennedy, Malcolm X, Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. Twelve of Lopez Island’s finest actors will read a total of 67 voices

in a show designed to challenge the silence that for decades has surrounded these four “unspeakable” assassinations. “Project Unspeakable” was inspired by James Douglass’ groundbreaking book, JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters. It was written by playwright Court Dorsey and associate playwrights Debbie Lynangale and Steve Wangh, based on extensive research about the four assassinated leaders. Douglass borrowed the term “unspeakable” from renowned Trappist monk Thomas Merton to convey the idea of events

that have been deliberately removed from public discourse. Through dramatic reading, the playwrights’ intention is to shed light on the “unspeakables” of today – the officially covered-up crimes of elements within the U.S. government and their corporate allies, which have fostered or worsened the multiple crises that currently beset our society. The play includes the words and stories of courageous individuals who, despite government intimidation, refused to be silent about what they knew about these assassinations. And it calls on all of us to examine our own responses over the

years to such crimes, then and now, and to consider the potential for responsible action. Director Carol Steckler says, “Long before the current Snowden era, I was influenced by President Eisenhower’s statement ‘Beware of the military industrial complex.’ There are many types and levels of conspiracy. This script sheds new light on historical facts that I believe should be seen and heard. I love the simplicity of the dramatic reading to tell these complex stories.” Paul Lewis, one of the actors, says the show “challenges the adage that

Crossword Puzzle 2. Upright 3. Bikini, e.g. 4. "___ Poppins" 5. "Star Trek" rank: Abbr. 6. Unnecessary 7. Important person 8. "... ___ he drove out of sight" 9. Black, as la nuit 10. Not yet solidified 11. Fabrics made with Angora yarn 12. Shelf support 13. Six-line stanzas 14. Hairy 20. Cut, maybe 23. Adjusts 24. Lunar crater on the far side 27. Bag-shaped fish traps 28. ___ as nails 31. Arctic bird 33. "Bleah!" 35. Each U.S. state is represented by two spelling) fabric Across 36. Actual (2 wds) 26. "Come to think of 50. Fused materials 1. Gobs 37. Ancient Semitic it ..." used in making 7. Makes insensitive language 27. Goods carried by glass due to coldness 38. Knock (hyphenated) train 51. Far Eastern female 39. Blow chunks 14. Colorless, 29. Abbr. after a name servants flammable 40. Having three 53. Popular summer hydrocarbon derived 30. Type of writer, leaflets e.g. Ralph Waldo sandwich from petroleum 41. Landlord who turns Emerson 54. Salad dressing 15. Magnetite, e.g. (2 out a tenant by legal 32. Forces someone choice wds) process out of bed 55. Indian bean 16. Publicly express 42. Infernal 34. Hawaiian strings 57. Run approval (var. 45. Morning music 35. Wallop 59. Wearing an spelling) 48. Cut 36. Obscure ornamental 17. Japanese women 50. Contagious semicircular crown trained to entertain 39. Intensify bacterial disease 43. Victorian, for one 60. Nuclear ___ men affecting horses 44. Firm 61. Set of eight 18. Humble 52. Bed board 46. "The Three Faces 62. More nimble 19. Drops on blades 54. Back of ___" 21. Change, chemically 56. Darling 22. Face-to-face exam 47. Minnesota ___, pool Down 58. Dash hustler 1. Spanish title for a 23. Any Platters platter Answers to today's puzzle 49. Soft twilled silk married woman 25. Small child (var. on page 8

The Islands’ Weekly • • March 11, 2014 – Page 4

silence is golden. It brings often stranger than fiction.” long buried voices back to The performance is by speak truth and challenge donation and open to the passive consent. Silence is public. All proceeds from golden for those in power. this performance go to They are silent about their KLOI to be split evenly with misdeeds and citizens are Project Unspeakable as the silent in their apathy and production rights to this distrust…As much as I rec- script require. Director Steckler reminds ognize the many freedoms we have, I also see that our the audience not to assume voice here has been severe- that anyone onstage has any ly stifled by the intimidation political axe to grind. “This of a system that promotes is a controversial drama and the polarity of ‘If you are not the actors are participatwith us, you are against us,’ ing with a wide range of effectively making popular knowledge and motivation dissent an enemy of the toward the script.” Nor do state.” the views expressed in the Another actor, Sandy drama necessarily reflect Bishop, attests that author the opinion of KLOI, whose Jim Douglass “has been sole interest is in promoting a friend of ours for over discourse. 30 years. He is a man of Actor Richard Ward adds, deep integrity. His research “Personally I am somestandards are impecca- thing of an agnostic about ble.  Having been impact- conspiracy narratives, but ed by each death as they this one might be differoccurred, I find it refresh- ent. Douglass is not a lighting 100% to haverecycled these threads pixels.weight, and his story might of truth come into the bring some of us around.” light of day.  The play is To learn more about this thought-provoking.  Some event, please call or email have expressed hostil- Carol Steckler 468-2138 or ity just at the mention of humhouse@rockisland. these deaths of JFK, MLK, com. For additional informaMalcolm X and RFK being tion about the background connected. If I have learned and organization of “Project anything from history it is Unspeakable,” please go to to keep an open mind and www.projectunspeakable. understand that the truth is com.

100% recycled pixels. WWW.ISLANDSWEEKLY.COM

Sudoku Fill in the blank cells using numbers 1 to 9. Each number can appear only once in each row, column, and 3x3 block. Use logic and process of elimination to solve the puzzle. The difficulty ranges from 1-5 (easy) 6-10 (moderate) and 11-15 (hard). Today’s puzzle is level 5. Sudoku and Crossword answers on page 8 WWW.ISLANDSWEEKLY.COM


acres, or under 51 percent, are assessed and taxed at the “highest and best use,” which under applicable regulations is the fair market value of the land and improvements. Current use agriculture, open space and forestland acres comprise 27.8 percent of the land and 4.6 percent of the owners. 21.5 percent of the land is exempt from taxation altogether. Because property taxes must raise a certain amount of money to fund multiple public agencies and programs, any “current use assessment” that reduces taxes for agriculture or timber lands or open space will mean that ordinary residential property owners, whose property is assessed at “fair market value,” will see their tax bills rise. In recent years, local assessors have been spurred by the Department of Revenue to scrutinize applications and monitor continued eligibility for the four property tax current use programs related to farmlands, timber, timberlands and open space. Efforts by Assessor Richard Zalmanek and other county tax assessors to enforce the law and remove outliers have caused county councils and the state legislature to address the process by which the exemptions are granted and the monitoring

of continued eligibility by exemption holders. Proper ty taxes have been a source of friction between tax assessors and property owners since the assessment reduction programs were enacted by constitutional amendment and implemented by the Legislature in 1971. Now legislators in Olympia and in rural counties are caught in the middle between owners of tracts of property, especially larger tracts, who want to reduce their taxes and assessors seeking to minimize “tax shifting” to people who cannot avail themselves of the exemption programs. That friction generated heat in San Juan County recently, when the County Council inserted two special provisions in the 2014 county budget, one of which withheld eight percent of the assessor’s 2014 budget until the assessor provides a comprehensive written report detailing the administration of the current use farm and agriculture program and the criteria used by the assessor in deciding continued eligibility. The other proviso requires the assessor to provide quarterly reports “showing the status of new construction valuation” in the county. Zalmanek has blamed delays in updating assessments for new construction on budget constraints. San Juan County Prosecutor Randy Gaylord

refused to give the usual “approved as to form” imprimatur to the 2014 budget because of the process the county used in passing the provisos. But Zalmanek says he will nevertheless comply with the provisos and provide the council with the required information. Zalmanek views the “tax shift” problem as a reason the county should devote more resources to verifying the eligibility of the participants in the four programs. To make the assessment of taxes “fair, uniform and equitable” - a tax collection mantra that is a Zalmanek favorite – the Assessor since 2009 has been working to verify the eligibility of participants in the four programs. In one fifteen-month period in 2011-2012, 23 landowners were removed from the four special assessment programs, with only two appeals filed. Four removals were at the owner’s request. Responding to taxpayer complaints, local 40th District state Representative Christine Lytton introduced House Bill 2306, which seeks to liberalize eligibility rules for the current use farmlands program After a fiscal note by the Department of Revenue on a related bill predicted a five million dollar tax shift from favored taxpayers to ordinary property owners during the first year after enactment, both bills were stymied. HB 2306 was then amended into a “study bill” requiring the Department of Revenue to report to the

Legislature on the property tax exemption program. Proponents and opponents of the original bill welcomed the study, but passage now appears unlikely. Both the County Council and the Assessor say they only want to enforce the law to ensure that qualifying property owners can participate in the current use programs. Neither wants ineligible property owners to take advantage of unfair reductions. “Fair, uniform and equitable administration of property taxes requires the assessor to enforce the law,” said Zalmanek. He points out that a 2007 audit of his office criticized enforcement of the law, and a current informal legal opinion from the Attorney General confirmed his interpretation that ineligible property owners be removed “promptly” from the program. “I disagree with the Assessor’s interpretation,” said San Juan County Council Chairman Rick Hughes, who welcomes the Legislature’s interest in the Open Space Law. Because millions of dollars in tax benefits are potentially at risk, legislative and county council action is likely. What will be done and when is uncertain.

REDUCE • REUSE • RECYCLE OPALCO Board Nominees OPALCO’s Committee on Nominations has named the following candidates for two Board of Director position openings in OPALCO’s District 1 (serving San Juan, Pearl, Henry, Brown and Spieden Islands) Vincent Dauciunas, Glenna Hall, Bryan Hoyer, Doug Rowan and John Sheehan. In addition, the following candidates were nominated by petition for the two position openings in District 1: Steve Hudson and Bob Jarman. Members may nominate candidates by petition until March 19, 2014. All members will vote at the annual meeting May 3, 2014 or by absentee ballot. For more information, contact Bev Madan at 376-3549.

2014-15 San Juan Islands Springtide Cover


ARTISTS! Call for more details 378-5696

Orcas Power & Light Cooperative

Town Hall Meetings Meet the OPALCO Board of Directors and engage in conversation about co-op matters such as energy efficiency, renewable power, rates, power supply, broadband, SmartHub, jobs, the upcoming election and annual meeting (May 3rd) and more . . .

San Juan: Tuesday 3/18 @ 4:30 p.m. Mullis Senior Center Orcas: Wednesday 3/19 @ 5:00 p.m. Orcas Senior Center Lopez: Tuesday 3/25 @ 5:00 p.m. Woodmen Hall Light refreshments will be served. No RSVP required.

“Orcas Tribute to Shakespeare” at Random Howse on Wednesday, March 19 at 6 pm Tickets are $12 at or at the door. Martin Lund will kick off the evening that includes local musicians presenting period pieces and actors performing works by Shakespeare.

Sazio di Notte is hosting a fundraising dinner on Thursday, March 20 from 6 to 9 pm With the Seattle Shakespeare Company and Dr. Ayanna Thompson, a world-renowned Shakespeare expert and professor at George Washington University. Dinner is $125 and includes wine. To attend, call 376-6394.

Dr. Ayanna Thompson presents“Othello in the 21st Century: To Perform or Not to Perform?” 7:30 p.m. at Orcas Center on Friday, March 21. Tickets are $10 and available at Darvill’s Bookstore, or at the door.

The Seattle Shakespeare Company will present “Romeo and Juliet” at Random Howse at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, March 21 The dinner theatre event will open with period music by Jeffri Cohen. Tickets are $15 at or at the door.

Eastsound comes alive with the sights and sounds of the Elizabethan period on Saturday, March 22

A colorful foot parade will move along North Beach Road starting at 11 a.m. with stilt walkers, fire breathers, jugglers and dancers. From 11 a.m. until 3 p.m., there will be food, craft vendors, music and games on the Village Green. Entertainment includes Spring Street School students performing “The Tempest,” puppetry, chess tournament, face painting, balloon animals and more.

The Seattle Shakespeare Company will close the festival with a performance of “Othello” at Orcas Center on Saturday, March 22 7:30 pm, tickets are $15 at The Islands’ Weekly • • March 11, 2014 – Page 5

Video production workshop A three-part video production workshop by the Economic Development Council Association of Skagit County begins March 13 in Mount Vernon. Presenting ideas and promotional content through video has become critical to businesses and non-profits. In this series learn how to create an audience/platform appropriate video and how to get it in front of your desired audience. The courses are open to San Juan County residents, and all of the courses are live-streamed so you can attend from your business or home. Sessions will be held March 13, 20 and April 3 at 204 West Montgomery in Mount Vernon or via live internet stream. Each class builds on the last to cre-

ate a foundation to help you plan out your video marketing strategy for 2014. Homework assigned. $50 per individual workshop or $135 for the series. $40/$110 for members or streaming. 3/13, 3/20 and 3/27 beginning at 4:00pm – 5:30pm. Refreshments provided. Sign-up on-line at or by calling 360-336-6114. The Economic Development Association of Skagit County is pleased to partner with Rebecca Murray of Skagit Media Marketing in making this series available. Session 1: “Lights! Action!” Learn why your audience wants you (begs you) to capture good audio. Review the pros and cons of various recording devices.


Overview of lighting types, strategies, tips and techniques. Light kit demonstration. Session 2: “Camera!” They’ll cover camera types and cost, basic filming techniques, and how to enhance visual interest. Brief overview of editing software available today and editing strategies. Tips on planning your next video production: script, shot list, storyboard, music, and voiceover. Homework assigned. Session 3: “Video Marketing 101” How can video help your audience find you when they need you? Is YouTube really all that important? What do other video hosting companies have to offer and what makes them important to the average business owner.


Vandalism on Friday Harbor being investigated A spree of senseless vandalism occurred sometime late Saturday night-early Sunday morning in Friday Harbor, according to San Juan County Sheriff Rob Nou. Targets of the vandalism include Friday Harbor Elementary School, Head Start, the pre-school at the Presbyterian Church, Kingdom Hall, and Homes For Islanders. Much of the damage was done with spray paint, and at least 11 tires were slashed on vehicles. Damage estimates are still being compiled. It is truly unfortunate that several of the targets of the vandalism particularly the school and Head Start-will have to redirect resources away from services to local

children in order to repair this damage, said Nou in a recent press release. “A lot of people have been hurt unnecessarily by these senseless acts,” he added. The Town of Friday Harbor has established a reward fund in this matter. A reward, currently over $2,000, may be paid for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for these crimes. If you would like to contribute to the reward fund, please contact Duncan Wilson at 378-2810. Anyone with information regarding these crimes is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 378-4151. There is also an anonymous tip line at 370-7629. Nou said the investigation is continuing.

Go take a hike calendar The Lopez Community Trails Network, a trails organization on Lopez Island, is again scheduling a series of hikes open to the public under the title “Go Take a Hike.” The hike schedule includes a variety of destinations on and off the Island, including both easy beach walks and more strenuous mountain hikes. These monthly hikes are on Saturdays and begin in March with the Lopez beach walk. Hikes are at a

leisurely pace, encouraging exploration and experiencing the wonders of nature. Sign up is by phone or email with the hike leader. Twelve is our usual limit. There is no expense except the sharing of transportation costs when we go off island. Call Bob Walker (360 468-3397) with any questions or visit Here are two upcoming hikes: Apr. 19 Iceberg Point seashore life ID fieldtrip



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CHRIST THE KING COMMUNITY CHURCH, There’s Always a Place for You! CTK gathers at 10:00 a.m. in the school multi-purpose room at 86 School Road. Come as you are! More info at Email: Phone: 888-421-4CTK ext. 819. GRACE EPISCOPAL CHURCH, welcomes you to worship with us on Sundays at 10:00 a.m. Fisherman Bay Road at Sunset Lane. 468-3477. Everyone welcome! COMMUNITY CHURCH, Please join us Sun. mornings. Adult Bible study, 9:30. Worship Service, 10:30. Nursery (birth3 yrs) and Jr. Church (4-12 yrs) provided during worship service. Small groups meet throughout the week. 91 Lopez Rd., in the village. Pastor Jeff Smith 468-3877. LUTHERAN CHURCH IN THE SAN JUANS. Join us Sundays at 9:00 a.m. in Center Church on Davis Bay Road. Also in Friday Harbor at 11:00 a.m. in St. David’s and in Eastsound at 1:15 p.m. in Emmanuel. Pastor Anne Hall, 468-3025. QUAKER WORSHIP GROUP Meetings will be Sundays at 10:00 a.m. at the home of Ron Metcalf, 6363 Fisherman Bay Road. Children’s program. Everyone welcome. Phone 468-2129. Email: ST. FRANCIS CATHOLIC CHURCH Come worship with us at Center Church on Davis Bay Rd. We welcome you to join us for Mass at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday. Call 3782910 for Mass times on San Juan and Orcas Islands BAHÁ’ÍS OF LOPEZ ISLAND Meet regularly for devotions, study of the Bahá’í Writings, and spiritual discussions. For dates and times, please email bahaisoflopezisland@gmail. com, and visit our blog at www.bahaisoflopezisland.blogspot. com for additional information about the Bahá’í Faith.

and hike With a minus tide we have the opportunity to observe the near shore undersea life exposed. This rugged rocky point of land, which I call Hatch Point, extends out about 300 feet from the 30 foot bluff with a small trail to access the beach. An invited seashore biologist or a guide book will help us identify what we see. This is very slippery terrain, so trekking poles or a walking stick may be useful. This hike is a loop trip of about two miles, most all on good upland trail. We will meet at Agate Beach Park at noon. Advance sign up with Bob Walker, phone 360-468-3397 or email May 17 T ur tleback/T ur tlehead Loop hike on Orcas This is a great opportunity to visit the new Turtlehead and connector trail completed in 2013 plus Turtleback all in one trip without putting in too many hours. We will start from the north trailhead, but leave a car at the south trailhead to bring people back and complete the loop. This will be a four to six mile hike depending on some options. The total hike will involve easy hiking terrain with great views and hopefully some wild flowers. Sign up with our leader Mike Moore for meeting time, ferry schedule, etc. at 360-468-3622 or email him at This should be an easy sign up for those on Orcas Island as well. What’s the buzz about?!

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REPORTER The Covington/Maple Valley Reporter, a division of Sound Publishing Inc. is seeking a seasoned general assignment reporter with writing experience and photography skills. This is a senior position and is based out of the Covington office. The primary coverage will be city government, business, sports, general assignment stories; and may include arts coverage. Schedule includes evening and/or weekend work. As a Reporter for Sound Publishing, you will be expected to: generate 8-10 by-line stories per week; use a digital camera to take photographs of the stories you cover; post on the publication’s web site; blog and use Twitter on the web; layout pages, using InDesign; shoot and edit videos for the web. The most highly valued traits are: commitment to community journalism and everything from short, brieftype stories about people and events to examining issues facing the community; to be inquisitive and resourceful in the coverage of assigned beats; to be comfortable producing five bylined stories a week; the ability to write stories that are tight and to the point; to be a motivated self-starter; to be able to establish a rapport with the community. Candidates must have excellent communication and organizational skills, and be able to work effectively in a deadline-driven environment. Minimum of two years of previous newspaper experience is required. Position also requires use of personal vehicle, possession of valid WA State Driver’s License and proof of active vehicle insurance. We offer a competitive hourly wage and benefits package including health insurance, paid time off (vacation, sick, and holidays), and 401K (currently with an employer match.) Email us your cover letter, resume, and include five examples of your best work showcasing your reporting skills and writing chops to:

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Notice to Contractors Washington State Law (RCW 18.27.100) requires that all advertisements for construction related services include the contractor’s current department of Labor and Industries registration number in the advertisement. Failure to obtain a certificate of registration from L&I or show the registration number in all advertising will result in a fine up to $5000 against the unregistered contractor. For more information, call Labor and Industries Specialty Compliance Services Division at 1-800-647-0982 or check L&Is internet site at

NOTICE Washington State law requires wood sellers to provide an invoice (receipt) that shows the seller’s and buyer’s name and address and the date delivered. The invoice should also state the price, the quantity delivered and the quantity upon which the price is based. There should be a statement on the type and quality of the wood. When you buy firewood write the seller’s phone number and the license plate number of the delivery vehicle. The legal measure for firewood in Washington is the cord or a fraction of a cord. Estimate a cord by visualizing a four-foot by eight-foot space filled with wood to a height of four feet. Most long bed pickup trucks have beds that are close to the four-foot by 8-foot dimension. To make a firewood complaint, call 360-9021857. WeightsMeasures/Fire woodinformation.aspx




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Friday Harbor’s community newspapers seek an enthusiastic, creative individual to work with local businesses. Successful candidate must be dependable, detailoriented, possess exceptional customer service skills and enjoy working in a team environment. Previous sales experience a plus; reliable insured transportation and good driving record required. We offer a solid base plus commission, work expense reimbursement, excellent health benefits, paid vacation, sick and holidays, 401K and a great work environment with opportunity to advance. EOE. Send resume with cover letter in PDF or Text format to or mail to Sound Publishing, Inc, 11323 Commando Rd. W, Main Unit, Everett, WA 98204

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ISLAND PETS lost/ found. On Lopez call Jane 360-468-2591; Joyce, 360-468-2258; Sheriff’s Office 360-3784151. Lopez Animal Protection Society, PO Box 474, Lopez, WA 98261. On Orcas call 3603766777. On San Juan call the Animal Shelter 360-378-2158

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The award-winning newspaper Journal of the San Juans is seeking an energetic, detailed-oriented reporter to write articles and features. Experience in photography and Adobe InDesign preferred. Applicants must be able to work in a team-oriented, deadline-driven environment, possess excellent writing skills, have a knowledge of community news and be able to write about multiple topics. Must relocate to Friday Harbor, WA. This is a full-time position that includes excellent benefits: medical, dental, life insurance, 401k, paid vacation, sick and holidays. EOE . No calls please. Send resume with cover letter, three or more non-returnable clips in PDF or Text format and references to or mail to: HR/GARJSJ Sound Publishing, Inc. 11323 Commando Rd W, Main Unit Everett, WA 98204

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CD COUNSELOR YOUTH/ADULT 12000 FT (40 hrs/week). Friday Harbor. Provides assessment services, individual and group counseling, prevention, intervention, and education regarding substance issues for youth and adults. Chemical Dependency Professional (CDP) req’d. BA degree in behavioral sciences from an accredited college or university preferred. Minimum of 5 years freedom from “misuse� of chemicals. Valid WSDL w/insurable driving record. Wage DOE. Benefits.

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This part-time position is based on Orcas Island. For a detailed job description and application materials, visit or call 360-370-7402. Open until filled. EOE.

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or mail to: Sound Publishing, Inc. 19426 68th Avenue S. Kent, WA 98032, ATTN: HR/COV Sound Publishing is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE) and strongly supports diversity in the workplace. Check out our website to find out more about us!


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REFRIGERATOR GE, 25 Cubic foot, side x side, black, ice & water in door, like new $598. WASHER Frigidare, HE, front loading, stainless steele drum, like new $379 DRYER, GE Adora HE, top of line, propane or natural gas, also like new! $298 (360)3707795

ARMOIRE, Wardrobe or Entertainment Center. Solid wood, 2 door, Matte Black. 62� X 48� X 24�. Excellent condition. $150. 360-378-9564 (Friday Harbor) Comfy large stuffed lounging chair, $25. Director’s chair, like new. Very attractive $15. Call after 5pm 360-468-3991.

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AKC WEST HIGHLAND White Terriers, These four boys are beyond cute and full of “Westitude�. These guys are healthy, lively puppies from parents who are fantastic family pets. We are experienced breeders with over 35 years experience. Ready to go 3/7/2014 for the discriminating buyer. $1,000 each. Rochester 360 273-9325. MINI AUSSIE Purebred Pups, raised in family home, sweet parents, 1st shots, wormed, dew claws & tails done, many colors, $395 & up, 360-550-6827

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March 11, 2014 -


Friday, March 21st, 7:30pm

Dance & Music for all Seasons Over 30 Lopez dancers of all ages

Songs by Mamatamba

By donation • Directed by Thea Huijgen


Are you concerned about property tax breaks? VOTE ON

to face with our law makers, tell their stories and ask for their support. The youth of today are incredible, they care about the world in which they live and are passionate about making a difference,” said Lopez Island Prevention Coalition’s executive coordinator Georgeana Cook. “The coalition has been very blessed to have this youth training requirement written into their grant. Over the past five years, we have been able to take

entering her third year with the prevention coalition.” “Our kids learn the power of asking questions to solve problems and using seven different ways to implement a solution. Meeting with our lawmakers is a great way to reinforce what they learn at their training. ”

Puzzle Answers

Ain’t over til it’s over; more time to purchase native plants By Master Gardener Jane Wentworth Special to the Weekly

Although our recent cold rains may not inspire us to even consider planting, the Vernal Equinox and spring are just around the corner. There is still time to order native plants from the San Juan County Master Gardener/Conser vation District Native Plant Sale. The sale is scheduled for March 29, 9 a.m. to noon,

R E P L E N I S H Y O U R M I N D , B O D Y, & S P I R I T

Lopez Wellness Listings Llewellyne Arden Yoga teacher; weekly classes, workshops, individual, & group sessions 468-4076; for schedule

ten youth to the National Youth Leadership Initiative and more than 50 kids to the Prevention Summit held in Yakima. ” “Learning the power of policy and advocacy is part of the National Youth Leadership training,” said Della McCullough now


Lopez Center Community Performance Night

Contributed photo

Teddy McCullough, former student of Lopez School, currently a student at American University and intern at the Office of National Drug Control Policy helped facilitate the trip to Capitol Hill for members of the coalition.


across the nation traveled to Washington, D.C. to participate in leadership development and meet with their congressional leaders. “Youth leadership is key to the prevention work that we do here on Lopez. We are fortunate to have Representative Rick Larsen and Senators, Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, who have made time over the years to meet with our youth. It is powerful experience for students to meet face

Last month, two local students literally “took it to the hill” – and met with Washington State  Representative Rick Larsen to share their concerns around underage drinking and substance abuse among youth in their community. Maddie Fisher, Mikayla Johnson from Lopez School and Youth Engagement Facilitator, Della McCullough representing the Lopez Island Prevention Coalition, along with 300 other youth from

Islands’ Weekly PO Box 39 Lopez, WA 98261

‘Taking it to the hill’

Space Available

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$16.75 / wk. for with a three month commitment. 5 lines max CONTACT CALI 376-4500 The Islands’ Weekly • • March 11, 2014 – Page 8

on San Juan (Fairgrounds), Lopez (Sunshine Builders) and Orcas Islands (The Grange). Plants native to the Pacific Northwest are beautiful in the garden and landscape, are beneficial for wildlife, and improve habitat and plant diversity.Here are a few noteworthy trees and shrubs to consider: — Pacific Crabapple (Malus fusca) has attractive flowers and fruits and is a good plant for creating thickets. It can grow in wetter soils. — Douglas Maple/Rocky Mountain Maple (Acer glabrum) is a small tree or shrub that occurs naturally in the San Juan Islands. Both leaves and twigs add fall and winter color to the garden or landscape. It is better adapted to drier, open

sites than the more commonly planted Vine Maple (Acer circinatum). — Sweet Gale (Myrica gale) is an aromatic, deciduous shrub, fixes nitrogen and is a good choice for wet or poor soils. — Pacific ninebark (Physocarpus capitatus) has attractive leaves and flowers and is a good soil-binder. — Garry oak (Quercus garryana) is also known as Oregon white oak. It grows well on dry, rocky slopes or bluffs as well as in rich, well-drained soils. It is a beautiful, heavy-limbed tree familiar to our natural landscapes. And don’t forgot the understory plants. Ferns add grace and year-round color. We have Deer fern and Sword fern available in small plugs that are easy

to plant. Evergreen huckleberry has glossy leaves and edible berries. Salal and Kinnikinnik also provide rich evergreen leaves and colorful berries. Some species may already be sold out. Please call WSU Extension for more information. Quantities are limited, so order now. The deadline for orders has been extended to March 21. A limited number of plants may be available on the day of the sale. For more information and the entire list of plants and to print an order form, go to, or call WSU Extension at 3784414 for information and order forms.

CD&P to renovate office Construction work on the San Juan County Community Development and Planning lobby and offices located at 135 Rhone Street will force some temporary service modifications beginning March 10, 2014. The renovation will create more efficient customer service areas and

spaces to meet with applicants. Counter service will be closed on Tuesday, March 11 and phone service for counter staff will be limited on that day only. Normal office hours and counter service will resume on March 12th with the public entrance tem-

porarily relocated to Reed Street. Signs will clearly mark the temporary entrance. Construction is expected to last approximately two months. For more information: Contact the San Juan County Community Development and Planning Department at 370-2354.

Islands' Weekly, March 11, 2014  

March 11, 2014 edition of the Islands' Weekly

Islands' Weekly, March 11, 2014  

March 11, 2014 edition of the Islands' Weekly