The in basket: Steve Herron of Poulsbo says he drives every day
through the new construction corridor on Highway 305 and is getting
“The contractor there is constantly blocking off lanes and closing
sections when absolutely no work is going on,” he said. “It’s
ridiculous! The last two weeks, traffic has been a mess because the
contractor closes lanes on both sides and then some minor work
takes places a mile from the closure.
“I am all for worker safety,” Steve said ” but this contractor is
saving money by closing the lanes he THINKS he might be working on
SOMETIME during the day. Instead he could spend the money to have
people put in cones as they are needed, when the work is ready to
The in basket: Dana Culleney and Dan Batman are among those who
miss the protected/permissive left-turn signal on Highway 305 at
Forest Rock Lane in Poulsbo.
“It used to be that when you approached Central Market from the
north and there was a green arrow and then the green ball light
that let you go,” Dana said. That is called a protected/permissive
As part of the widening of the highway through that stretch, they
have replaced it with what’s called a protected left turn,
permitting the turn only when a green arrow tells you all
conflicting movements have a red light.
The in basket: My wife, the Judybaker, and I were musing as we
drove along in an HOV lane in Tacoma about what constitutes a
second person in a vehicle for purposes of allowing use of those
lanes. Would an infant in a car seat be enough? A 10-year-old? A
The in basket: Frank Reed read the May 30 Road Warrior about
interest accrued on Good to Go! accounts , from which bridge and
highways tolls can be paid, and wondered why ferry fares can’t be
paid the same way.
“The Washington State ferry system engages in a
huge rip-off of its customers and seems to pat itself on the
back for doing so,” he wrote. “The crossing tolls, pre-purchased
on-line or at toll booths, are not really accounts set up in
the customer’s name with a dollar value in them,
as are Good to Go accounts, but only slightly
different version of the previous system of buying paper
tickets. In addition the tickets have fast expiration times
and are not user friendly.
“Actual monetary amounts in actual accounts can draw interest (as
you pointed out) that can be used by the ferry system, don’t care
if toll values vary for seasonal or other reasons and
don’t penalize the customer with an expiration date.
My question is why is the ferry system is so intent on using its
own pre-paid tolling system which doesn’t work (software problems)
and not the Good to Go! system, which according to your article can
relatively easily credit the correct facility being used. This
would certainly help the bean counters with realistic ferry route
“Why not use just one tolling system?”
The in basket: When Steve Stewart of the state Department of
Licensing called me the other day to seek my help in letting the
growing number of scooter and motorcycle owners know what they must
do to be legal, I was reminded of an old inquiry to the Road
Warrior from Jerry Maurer of North Kitsap.
“My wife acquired a 49cc scooter not too long ago,” he wrote in
July 2006. “Our understanding of the
legality of this scooter is that it is considered a moped and no
motorcycle license is required.
“(But) we are confused as to where she can drive on Viking Way
heading north into Poulsbo.
The in basket: Gary Jones writes to say, “I’m wondering why the
state hasn’t required the contractor of the new highway 3 and 303
interchange to clean up the rest of their construction
“The cones along both sides of Highway 3 and along Highway 303
entering the interchange, along with all of the signs and other
debris at the retention pond are such an eyesore. The weeds are
even starting to take over some of the cones.”
Leroy McVay of Poulsbo has a different issue with the interchange,
betting me $5 that the backup system to keep the traffic signals
working in a power outage will consist of batteries. “Remind them
the lights go to four-way red flashing and the batteries are
only good for about three or four hours,” he wrote.
The in basket: Carl Erickson writes, “Now that the
Highway 304 project from Highway 3 to the shipyard gate is done,
I’m curious about what’s going to be planted in the median.
“It seems to me that deciduous trees, as are in the older section,
are a dangerous, labor-intensive way to beautify the area with
leaves falling and maintenance crews dodging vehicles to clean them
The in basket: Susan Smith goes for our attention with the
following e-mail: “Damn! How can we slow these drivers down? It is
35 mph on Old Military Road NE and we like to walk our dogs on
Saturday and Sunday mornings. But some of the folks who live on
this road come out of their driveways like bats out of
hell and the road walkers/joggers are forced into the
ditch to escape becoming hood ornaments.
“And then we have those who choose to use this road as
a short cut to and from work to … shave 15 minutes off their
commute time,” she said.
The in box: Chris Blankenship on the Road Warrior blog at
kitsapsun.com wrote, “I’ve had it! I just left the Silverdale
Costco parking lot where a
Citizens on Patrol large Ford sedan was idling with its lights
flashing behind a parked Grand Marquis. Now you may say that it’s
their job to patrol and find the scofflaws who park willy-nilly in
the handicap spaces at businesses. (But) couldn’t they just issue a
ticket and move along?
“The county must have a better way to spend our (expensive)
gasoline than with this kind of waste,” he said. “You are burning
dear tax dollars idling ( and blocking) in the parking lot waiting
for a confrontation. The county needs to do away with the Citizen’s
The in basket: Bev Willeford writes, “My husband has permanent
handicap plates on our car. My sister has permanent handicap plates
on her car.
“When I drive my sister, and my
husband isn’t with us, am I allowed to park in handicap parking
for her as long as she has her wallet card, or does she need to
have her placard that is associated with her card?”
The out basket: Deputy Pete Ball of Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office,
who oversees his department’s enforcement of handicapped parking,
calls the inquiry “unusual, to say the least.”
Still, he said, “to be perfectly legal under the law, the sister
really should use her placard regardless of what car she’s in. I
think it would be highly unlikely that they would ever be
questioned but to be perfectly legal, her placard and ID card
should be together when she is exercising her right to park in the