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Central Kitsap Reporter's 2009 Year in Review

Web editor's note: Part 2 will be posted soon.

January

Central Kitsap and East Bremerton Planned Parenthood organizations merge

Hoping to achieve greater access and a more streamlined approach for patients, three Planned Parenthood organizations merged in January to form Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest.

Planned Parenthood of Western Washington, Planned Parenthood of Alaska and Planned Parenthood of Idaho make up the newly formed affiliate.

In Silverdale on Silverdale Way and in Bremerton on Riddell Road, the two locations are now part of the nation’s largest affiliate. Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest (PPGNW) spokesman Brian Cutler said the merger has been in talks for about a year and the volunteer boards of each respective affiliate decided to approve it in recent months. The 29 health centers now go by one name.

Central Kitsap teen Hanna Orando crowned Miss Kitsap 2009

Newly crowned Miss Kitsap Hanna Orando was a bit stunned when her name was announced as the winner of the competition, but it didn’t last long as Orando’s friends swarmed to the front of the stage to congratulate her. Orando wowed the packed Bremerton High School auditorium with her polished performance of “O Mio Babbino Caros” by Puccini. She received a $4,000 scholarship, and will represent Kitsap County in the Miss Washington Scholarship Organization pageant this summer.

Grape Expectations closes its physical doors after 24 years

Mary Earl, owner of Grape Expectations in Old Town Silverdale, rolled out a new business plan that put her 24-year-old wine business clearly on the world’s Internet stage. Earl closed her Grape Expectations wine shop in Old Town Silverdale and moved to an online business. Earl said the slumping economy really put things into perspective for her.

February

Former master chief charged with child rape

A Navy master chief petty officer assigned to Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor has been charged with child rape, according to Kitsap County Superior Court documents.

Kitsap County Superior Court issued a warrant for the arrest of Daniel C. Jones for second-degree child rape and one count of communication with a minor for immoral purposes.

Jones served as chief of the boat on the USS Louisiana’s blue crew for nearly three years. The submarine is homeported at NBK-Bangor. KCSO began an investigation Jan. 13 concerning allegations involving “sexual contact between Jones and underage female victims,” according to an email from Deputy Scott Wilson, KCSO spokesman. Court documents state that Jones had sexual intercourse with a 14-year-old girl whom he knew “on more than 10 occasions.”

NBK-Bangor celebrates 1,000th Trident patrol

Submariners nationwide, and at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor, celebrated the 1,000th Trident strategic deterrent patrol in Febrary.

The actual milestone belonged to the USS Wyoming blue crew, a Trident ballistic missile submarine homeported in Kings Bay, Ga.

Six Trident submarines operate out of Kings Bay.

The first Trident submarine, the USS Ohio, arrived at Bangor in 1982.

March

Firefighter stairclimb a success for Klahowya grad

Fall City firefighter Brett Krache sprint-climbed 69 stories up the Columbia Center in Seattle with a photo of his baby brother, Todd, inside his face piece.

Brett, a 2000 Klahowya Secondary School grad, raised more than $11,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and participated in the 18th annual Scott Firefighter Stairclimb March 8. Brett’s youngest brother, Todd, of Silverdale, died Nov. 30, 2008 at the age of 21 from complications with lymphoma, a type of blood cancer.

‘Seeing the dreamer and the dream’

In 1963, former Central Kitsap High School and Olympic High School teacher Cherry Rachal heard Martin Luther King Jr. give his famous “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington, D.C. as more than 200,000 people of all colors and races gathered for the March on Washington.

Forty-six years later, Rachal returned to Washington, D.C., to see President Barack Obama’s inauguration as he became the nation’s first black president.

“I saw the dreamer and the dream,” Rachal told a group of CKHS students March 4.

CKSD Superintendent Lynch goes to Olympia

As superintendent of the Central Kitsap School District, Greg Lynch has seen first-hand what happens when the Washington state Legislature adopts changes to the state’s public education system and gives districts less than 120 days to implement those reforms.

“Those days are the end of the school year and during the summer and we need to change that,” Lynch said. “When you identify a problem, you have an obligation to address it positively and make a difference.”

That’s exactly what Lynch has done over the past seven months as he has presented his “Anatomy of Change” proposal to education leaders including state Superintendent Randy Dorn, local state legislators and the Washington Board of Education on March 13.

Identity theft on the rise in Central Kitsap

With many Americans struggling to make ends meet, Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) spokesman Deputy Scott Wilson said identity theft may be on the rise.

Wilson said KCSO had 25 identity theft cases in Central Kitsap in 2006, but that number skyrocketed in 2007 with 70 cases and 79 cases in 2008. Wilson said between Jan. 1 and March 24 of this year, KCSO has already recorded 38 identity theft cases.

“We’re already halfway there, so we know that number is going to go way up,” he said.

While KCSO has seen an increase in identity theft cases, the Bremerton Police Department (BPD) had a slight decrease.

From March 2007 to March 2008, BPD recorded 53 identity theft cases, but between April 2008 and March of this year, the department only handled 39 cases.

April

The Doctors Clinic opens fourth physician office in Silverdale

Dr. Charles L. Salmon, the founder of The Doctors Clinic, was on hand Thursday, March 26 to celebrate the opening of the multi-specialty medical group’s ninth location in Kitsap County, in Silverdale.

The Cavalon Place facility, located at 2011 NW Myhre Road, is The Doctors Clinic’s fourth physician office in Silverdale.

The Doctors Clinic in East Bremerton closed in October 2008 and the medical group acquired the Cavalon space around the same time.

Harrison Medical Center reduces staff

The sour economy has taken its toll across all arenas of business and Harrison Medical Center is one of them.

Harrison President and CEO Scott Bosch announced in early April the organization would eliminate staff positions “across all areas over the next six to eight weeks,” according to a Harrison Medical Center news release.

Several factors contributed to the decision to trim the organization including a $3 million loss in state Medicaid funding; a $7 million cost to fund Harrison’s Defined Benefit Pension program based on a loss of investment funds; rising health insurance premium costs; an increase in Harrison’s “charity care,” meaning the organization is paid less to provide the same care; and a decrease in “nearly all patient care services.”

Earlier in April, Harrison announced its decision to close its behavioral health unit, which affected 23 employees and several physicians.

Sheriff’s office budget cuts on hold

The Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO) didn’t have to lay off any deputies in April, according to Deputy Scott Wilson, KCSO spokesman.

Wilson said the Kitsap County commissioners recommended all county departments, aside from KCSO, trim their budgets by 6 percent.

Wilson said a 6 percent cut to KCSO’s budget would have been a little more than $1 million, meaning 11 deputies would have been laid off, dropping the personnel strength down to 111.

May

Future of West Sound Fire & Rescue merger on hold

The West Sound Fire & Rescue planning committee decided to “call time out” on the plan to consolidate three Kitsap County fire agencies, according to Bremerton Fire Chief Al Duke.

The WSFR planning committee decided to delay the plan to merge Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue (CKFR), Bremerton Fire Department and South Kitsap Fire & Rescue (SKFR), because of to the current ups and downs of the economy.

As a result, the public vote to merge the fire agencies, which was originally slated for November, will happen at a later date.

Silverdale YMCA construction is green lighted

The Kitsap County Board of Commissioners has approved an agreement between the county and the YMCA of Tacoma-Pierce County to build a YMCA in Silverdale.

“I’m very happy, you might even say I’m thrilled,” Central Kitsap Community Council President Bob Moyer said. “I think we’re all very pleased.”

The agreement includes a 35-year lease with three extensions to 110 years of property at Silverdale Way and Poplars Avenue in Silverdale, which is designated as the site for the Central Kitsap Community Campus, according to the YMCA of Tacoma-Pierce County. The YMCA is the first part of the campus which is slated to include a performing arts center, library and senior housing.

YMCA of Tacoma-Pierce County spokeswoman Michelle LaRue said the Silverdale YMCA will be similar to the Gig Harbor facility, which serves 18,000 people. She said the Silverdale facility will be 50,000-70,000 square feet and include an aquatic center, fitness area, teen center, gym and racquetball courts.

Kitsap County and YMCA of Tacoma-Pierce County will fund the Silverdale project. The YMCA and Kitsap County will each contribute $5 million to the project.

In June, Ron and Nadean Ross pledged $1 million toward the new YMCA on the Central Kitsap Community Campus, marking the first private pledge for the proposed facility.

Klahowya teacher named CKSD Teacher of the Year

Danyell Laughlin is more than just an English teacher, according to her colleagues, but she’ll never admit to that — even after winning the honor of Teacher of the Year for the Central Kitsap School District (CKSD). Laughlin, who teaches at Klahowya Secondary School (KSS), spends two class periods each day teaching sophomore English and then spends the remainder of her day with “students who are not finding the level of success that we would like them to find in their classes,” she said.

CK voters say yes to EMS

Despite tough economic times, Central Kitsap voters are willing to pay a little extra for Emergency Medical Services (EMS).

The Kitsap County Auditor’s Office said the Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue (CKFR) EMS levy is passing by nearly 75 percent. 10,939 people voted yes, while 3,766, or roughly 25 percent, voted no.

“We’re just very pleased and thrilled that the citizens support it,” CKFR Chief Ken Burdette said.

The levy’s passage reauthorizes the collection of 50 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value. CKFR officials predicted the 2010 levy rate would have been at about 39 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value.

June

Silverdale/Bremerton area voted best housing market in the nation

It was right there for all to read on the U.S. News & World Report’s Web site: A story about the top 10 housing markets for the Next 10 years, with the Silverdale and Bremerton area making the top of the list.

A 5.2 percent increase in home prices over the next 10 years would see the median home sale price of $266,500 in Silverdale in 2008 rise to more than $280,000 by 2018, according to Moody’s. The reason: stability.

Mullins writes, “The neighboring cities of Bremerton and Silverdale, Wash., are located on the Kitsap Peninsula, a slip of land surrounded by more than 300 miles of coastline in lovely Puget Sound. Although the Pacific Northwest greenery is enticing, it’s the cities’ stable economies that should drive home price gains in the coming years. A large military presence of the U.S. Navy in particular helps insulate the local economies from

volatility.

CKHS ranks in top two percent of America’s schools

For seven years running, Central Kitsap High School (CKHS) was recognized by Newsweek magazine as one of America’s top-rated high schools.

This year, the school ranked 323 out of approximately 1,500 schools, or in the top 2 percent of all public high schools.

A ratio of the number of students who take advanced placement tests divided by the number of graduating seniors is used to calculate an index score.

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