Daily Archives: May 8, 2008

Condo dwellers halt Harbour Pub’s plans


The lines may grow outside, but the inside of the Harbour Public House isn’t budging to accommodate. Read my story below.

Pub loses to condo dwellers in latest ruling
By Tristan Baurick

The state Court of Appeals ruled last week against the proposed expansion of the Harbour Public House, a popular tavern and eatery overlooking Eagle Harbor in downtown Winslow.

The court sided with the residents of the neighboring Harbourside Condominiums who believe an additional all-ages dining area would block views, boost noise and increase traffic and parking problems.

According to Judge Elaine Houghton, the expansion “would not fit the character” of an earlier agreement struck between the pub’s owners and the condo’s residential association. Houghton also noted that the pub’s proposed roofline “would change the character of the view from the condominium property.”

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Bush grants memorial park status


National Park status was granted on to the Bainbridge Island Japanese-American internment memorial today.

President Bush signed into law the Consolidated National Resources Act and its package of 60 public lands measures, including the memorial designation and Snohomish County’s Wild Sky wilderness preservation bill.

The memorial on Eagle Harbor’s south shore honors the 227 islanders of Japanese decent who were sent to internment camps during World War II. The Bainbridge group was the first of 110,000 Japanese-Americans from various states incarcerated during the war.

Rep. Jay Inslee, who pushed the bill through Congress, hopes national park designation will help the island’s Japanese-American community group put the finishing touches on a memorial he says will attract visitors from across the region.

“I’m proud of our community for fashioning this memorial and hope federal designation will help them raise funds necessary to bring it to completion,” the Bainbridge Democrat said.

Is the enemy us?


Longtime islander Iver MacDougall borrowed a line from comic strip character Pogo to say that the public shares some of the blame for the perceived dysfunction in city government.

“We have met the enemy and he is us,” MacDougall said at a town hall-style meeting on Tuesday night (see post below).

MacDougall and others said the tone of public discourse has lately gotten a bit too personal and nasty.

But being too concerned about politeness could dampen citizen participation, said Kirsten Hytopoulos.

Perhaps too many islanders are sitting at home watching hours of City Council meetings on BITV.

“Some people may be alone watching TV and having a beer and they want to throw the can at the TV,” said Charles Schmid.

Nothing breaks civic isolation and eases political frustration like teaming up with others and working for the common good, he said. With that in mind, Schmid encouraged the meeting’s attendees to link up in neighborhood groups and put pent-up energy to use at the grassroots level.

So, what’s your take? Is the tough talk on the island too tough to be productive? Is it not tough enough? Is talk enough?

The public’s plea to be nice at public meetings

The last town hall-style meeting at the local American Legion Hall three months ago was as angry as I’ve ever seen a meeting on Bainbridge Island.

The sequel, held Tuesday night, had a more conciliatory spirit. Billed as a discussion of how to improve city government, a lot of folks stood up at the meeting to tone down the rhetoric.

Read my story below.

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