Tag Archives: kitsap county

Travelocity names Kitsap a top 10 destination for beer tourism

brew2_21667175_ver1-0_640_480Kitsap County ranks among of the best destinations in the country for a “beercation,” according to one major travel website.

Travelocity recently released a beer tourism index to assess what areas of the nation are best suited for beer-centric travel.

The index ranks metro areas based on the number of breweries in the area, the availability of rideshare services, air accessibility and the cost of lodging.

Kitsap County (listed as Bremerton-Silverdale) landed at No. 10 on Travelocity’s list of top beer destinations in the small metro area category:


It’s not a big surprise Kitsap would make this list, considering more than a dozen craft breweries are in business across the county.

Groups like Visit Kitsap Peninsula are already marketing West Sound as a “hops-lover’s heaven.”

Minimum wage initiative would affect thousands of Kitsap workers

20060124-061050-pic-985377851_5739340_ver1-0_640_480A minimum wage initiative on the Nov. 8 ballot could boost pay for thousands of low-wage Kitsap County workers, according to analysis by a state economist.

But nailing down exactly how many jobs would be affected if the initiative passed is no easy task.

If approved, Initiative 1433 would incrementally increase the state’s minimum wage from the current $9.47 an hour to $13.50 an hour in 2020.

To help understand the implications of the initiative, state Employment Security Department economist Scott Bailey created a hypothetical scenario in which a $13.50 minimum wage was applied to 2015 labor markets in each county. He used a $12.23 minimum wage to account for inflation between 2015 and 2020.

B0013070067--582128For job and wage data, Bailey turned to a database of quarterly wage records.

The records include most jobs covered by unemployment insurance, but exclude federal jobs, private household employment like nannying, and home health care workers.

Bailey also noted the records capture three-month periods, which makes it difficult to create an exact point-in-time job count, since individuals move in and out of labor markets, and many jobs are short-term.

With all those caveats in mind, here were key takeaways from Bailey’s analysis of Kitsap County’s labor market in 2015:

— Somewhere between 3 percent and 6 percent of non-federal jobs in Kitsap paid minimum wage ($9.47, plus or minus 18 cents).

— Somewhere between 19 percent and 26 percent of non-federal jobs paid less than $12.23 an hour (the equivalent of $13.50 in 2020). That was between 9,000 and 19,000 jobs.

— Jobs paying less than $12.23 an hour accounted for 8 percent of Kitsap’s non-federal payroll.

— Payroll would have to increase by about 1.2 percent to meet the minimum wage requirement under 1433, a change of about $29.7 million.

Bailey also took a statewide look at what industries would most be affected by the minimum wage hike, again using 2015 labor market numbers.

This chart shows the percentage of jobs by industry paying less than $12.23 an hour (the equivalent of $13.50 in 2020):

Landlords fair will highlight need for veteran housing

B0013334255--619729The Homes for All Who Served initiative launched last year with the ambitious goal of housing all homeless veterans in Kitsap County by Nov. 11, 2016.

More than 80 former service members have been housed since the program started, but more needs to be done to meet the Veterans Day deadline, according to a county news release.

In an effort to find more potential homes for veterans, Kitsap Community Resources will host an information fair for landlords next week. The fair is scheduled for 10 a.m. to noon July 22 at 1201 Park Street in Bremerton.

The event will include information on fair housing laws, housing subsidies, tenant programs that support veterans, and how to participate in ending veteran homelessness.

“Landlords are key partners in providing rental units for veterans who are being supported by agencies that provide counseling, job search and financial assistance,” Bremerton Mayor Patty Lent said in the news release.

A survey conducted by Homes for All Who Served in the fall of 2015 found 45 veterans living outside. Nearly all of those veterans have either been housed, are in the process of securing housing, or are unable to be contacted, according to the news release. Another survey will be conducted this month.

Landlords and property owners interested in the Homes for All Who Served project may contact Jackie Fojtik at the Housing Solutions Center, (360) 473-2035.

U-Haul storage center approved in Gorst

U-HAUL LOGOA familiar name in moving is putting down roots in Gorst.

U-Haul recently purchased a storage center inside the triangle formed by the junction of Highway 3 and Highway 16.

Now the county has approved a project to expand the existing facility with a three-story, 50,000-square-foot storage building and attached warehouse.

u-haul.gorstNotice of administrative conditional use permit approval was posted May 18. 

The facility will provide climate-controlled storage and moving vehicle rentals, according to the notice.

Storage facilities seem to be sprouting up all over these days.

Construction on one self storage complex is underway on Randall Way in Silverdale. It’s set to open next winter.

Meanwhile, a Seattle company is considering a three-story facility by Safeway in Poulsbo.

Health district releases new draft vaping ordinance

0203_KSLO_Vape5Kitsap Public Health District posted an updated draft of an ordinance Wednesday that would ban vaping in indoor public places.

The district had been developing a much broader ordinance regulating vaping and vape shops in the county but a new state law on vaping nullified many of the proposed local rules. 

The state law bans minors younger than 18 from possessing or purchasing vapor products, requires vapor retailers to obtain licenses and prohibits vaping in some public places, such as schools and playgrounds, frequented by children, among many other provisions.

The law didn’t address vaping in many indoor public places, and that’s the area the health district is targeting with its new draft ordinance.

The ordinance would prohibit vaping in any interior space available to the public, including workplaces, restaurants, stores, buses and elevators — essentially any enclosed gathering space that is not a private residence:

indoor plublic space

Under the proposed ordinance, establishments that bar entry to minors could obtain waivers to allow indoor vaping. The local ban also would not apply to vape shops, where vaping is still allowed under the new state law.

The public health board will review the new draft ordinance at its May 3 meeting, but will not take action until a later date.

The full text of the draft ordinance is posted below:

KPHB Draft Regulations Restricting Vaping in Indoor Public Places by Tad Sooter

$97,000 awarded for youth job skills programs

431751_5554031_ver1.0_640_480The state awarded more than $97,000 to a local workforce development agency to create internships and training opportunities for young people, according to a news release.

The YouthWorks funding was awarded to the Olympic Workforce Development Area Consortium, which oversees WorkSource offices in Kitsap, Clallam and Jefferson Counties.

YouthWorks is a collaborative program between workforce councils, schools and other educational agencies to provide job search skills, career assessments and work experience jobs to high school dropouts and other youth re-engaging with school after dropping out.

Locally, the YouthWorks project will partner with Olympic Educational Services District, West Sound Technical Skills Center, Olympic College, West Sound STEM and Stand Up for Kids, an organization that reaches out to homeless youth to teach basic life skills.

“This YouthWorks investment opens wonderful opportunities for our youth to gain valuable work skills and experiences,” County Commissioner and Olympic Consortium Chair Charlotte Garrido said in the release. “It will enhance our local workforce and spur our economy.”

Subdivision approved near Ridgetop JH

Subdivision location

A 61-lot subdivision has been approved near Ridgetop Junior High School in Silverdale.

The hearing examiner for Kitsap County gave the go-ahead March 29 for subdivision of two, 5-acre parcels on Hogan Lane, east of the Ridgetop Boulevard/Waaga Way interchange.

15 02528 NOA Final
Preliminary site plan

A preliminary site plan for “Hogan Heights” filed with the county shows rows of lots surrounding a circular access road with an entrance at the end of Hogan Lane.

The development will be built out in two phases, according to a county staff report.

The owner and applicant for the project is Marana Investments Company, Inc. of Bremerton.

Marana bought the lots in 2014 for $400,000, according to assessor’s documents.

37 vying for final retail marijuana licenses

The state has nine marijuana licenses left to issue in Kitsap County and nearly 40 applicants are vying to receive them.

The Liquor and Cannabis Board opened a new application period for retail licenses in October, as the state laid the ground work for rolling the medical marijuana industry into the recreational system.

The board announced Monday it would stop taking applications at the end of March.

As of Tuesday, 37 retail applications were pending in Kitsap (see map above). The state will allow 20 total retail outlets in the county. Eleven licenses have already been issued, leaving nine to dole out.

Here’s a breakdown of applications and license allotments by jurisdiction:

Applications are being processed under three priority tiers, according to a Liquor and Cannabis Board release:

  • Priority 1: Applicants who applied for a marijuana retail license prior to July 1, 2014, operated (or were employed by) a collective garden prior to January 1, 2013, have maintained a state and local business license and have a history of paying state taxes and fees.
  • Priority 2: Applicants who operated (or were employed by) a collective garden prior to January 1, 2013, have maintained a state and local business license and have a history of paying state taxes and fees.
  • Priority 3: applicants are those who do not meet priority 1 or 2 criteria.

Since October, the board has received 162 priority 1 applications, 63 priority 2 applications and 879 priority 3 applications with 166 still awaiting prioritization, according to the release.

I corrected the license allocation graphic in this post to reflect a second Bainbridge Island application. Both island applications are for the same Miller Bay Road address.

Fewer Kitsap retailers selling tobacco to kids


Three years ago, Kitsap County had the highest rate of illegal tobacco sales to minors in the state, according to the Synar Report.

Local retailers performed better in compliance checks in the past two years.

After an alarming 39.3 percent sold to minors in 2013, 14.8 percent made illegal sales in 2014, followed by 13.3 percent in 2015 (see chart above).

20051230-071415-pic-363824317These numbers are based on relatively small sample sizes. Thirty compliance checks were conducted in Kitsap last year as part of the Synar study. There are about 200 tobacco retailers in the county.

During the checks, underage teens, working with law enforcement, attempt to buy cigarettes from randomly-selected retailers.

State health officials were discouraged by the statewide trend, as more than 17 percent of retailers sold to minors during compliance checks last year.

According to a news release, the state could lose federal funding for drug, alcohol, and tobacco prevention and treatment if the rate exceeds 20 percent.

“It is unacceptable that more than one in six retailers are illegally selling tobacco to minors,” Secretary of Health John Wiesman said in the release. “When kids get their hands on tobacco, it can lead to a lifetime of addiction, poor health, and early death.”

Surveys suggest tobacco use is declining among Kitsap teens, though vaping is on the rise.

You can find more Kitsap-specific tobacco stats here.

The priciest Kitsap home sales of 2015

These were the most expensive homes sold in Kitsap County in 2015, excluding Bainbridge Island (island homes are listed here). Details from public records and online listings. 

1. Olympic View waterfront (CK) — $1.36 million

Sale date: July 7

Location: 6855 NW Brothers View Lane (off Olympic View Loop)

Description: A 4,000-square-foot, three-bedroom, four-bath house on a 2-acre waterfront parcel facing Hood Canal. Built in 2006.

Listing here.

2. President Point waterfront (NK) — $1.35 million

Sale date: Jan. 13

Location: 13176 NE James Way

Description: A 4,600-square-foot, four-bedroom, four-bath house on 0.4 acres facing Puget Sound. Built in 2009.

“Unobstructed Puget Sound & Cascade mountain range views, stretching from beyond Mt. Baker to Mt. Rainier. Elegance, seamlessly combined with comfort and style.”

Listing and photos here.

3. Scandia waterfront (NK) — $1.2 million

Sale date: June 3

Location: 15716 Virginia Point Road

Description: A 2,800-square-foot, three-bedroom, 2.25-bath house on 0.7 acres, on the south shore of Liberty Bay. Built in 1999.

“Rare property… deep water moorage and tidelands.”

Listing and photos here. Continue reading