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Editors View

In her first legislative session since switching from the House to the Senate, Jan Angel sure captured her share of attention. Wasn’t the good kind, though, despite the self-congratulatory press release she sent out when the Legislature adjourned. read more »

Editor's View

It’s kind of a gypsy lifestyle, but it seems to suit a guy like Duane Atkinson.

He’s been a denizen of downtown Port Orchard since last July, though you might not have run across him unless you poked your head in to see what was going on in the building at 807 Bay St.

That’s where The Coffee Oasis just opened its third location in Kitsap County, and Atkinson and a few other out-of-town fellas did a lot of the work getting the café ready for its March 1 debut.

They are construction missionaries, bringing their skills to the Coffee Oasis project as members of Hard Hats for Christ, a ministry based in Kelso, Wash., just across the Columbia River from Atkinson’s hometown of Rainier, Ore.

“We’ve all been doing a little bit of everything,” he said. read more »

Editor's View

John Rosebeary, right, and Jonathan Ogilvie shake hands at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle the day after Rosebeary's kidney transplant surgery in January to receive Ogilvie's donated organ. (Photo courtesy Rosebeary family)They had talked about taking a fishing trip together sometime, maybe off the Gulf Coast of Texas or up in Alaska. But it seems more of a sure thing now, given the unique bond John Rosebeary and Jonathan Ogilvie share.

It started as a business relationship about 15 years ago when Ogilvie worked for a wholesale supplier of Rosebeary’s company, Viking Fence in Poulsbo. read more »

Editor's View

So many Top Stories of 2013 lists are out there. So many categories — Most Heartwarming Stories, Top Science and Tech Stories, Top Stories According to Moms. There’s even a list of the Top 25 Most Censored Stories (subtitled The News That Didn’t Make the News.)

Rather than compiling one more random entry to that exhaustive list of Top Stories lists, I decided to review the year by reviving what once was a weekly feature at a newspaper where I worked. So here (with an assist from my kids) is your 2013 News Quiz:

1. In February, what plunged into Earth’s atmosphere and exploded in the morning sky above the Russian city of Chelyabinsk? read more »

Editor's View

Do you think we have enough designated Days? This edition of our paper will get circulated at the end of a stretch that covers Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday.

The scorecard for themes in that succession: Days for gratitude — 1; Days for charity — 1; Days for buying stuff — 3 (plus every day that follows in the all-important holiday shopping season).

And of course there’s been controversy over encroachment of the Black Friday lunacy into the evening of Thanksgiving. I guess the only way that makes sense is if it saves shopping zombies from bundling themselves in sleeping bags in the middle of the night outside a big-box store waiting to rush in at 5 a.m. to grab those “doorbusters.” read more »

Editor's View

The race between Jan Angel and Nathan Schlicher is the most expensive campaign for a legislative seat the state has ever seen, because it’s a critical opportunity for Republicans in the narrowly divided Senate to gain a seat that had been a virtual lock for Democrats when Derek Kilmer held the post.

When Kilmer gave up his 26th District Senate seat and was elected to Congress — where he’s trying to establish himself as a voice of reason in a place where being reasonable is not in fashion — Schlicher was appointed to the position temporarily.

Angel, a popular Republican and former Kitsap County commissioner, easily won re-election a year ago to a third term representing the 26th District in the House, and would continue in that post should she lose the special Senate election. In the primary in August, she had a 9-percentage-point lead over Schlicher, an emergency room physician from Gig Harbor. read more »

Editor's View

There’s no election for mayor in Port Orchard this November, and there may never be another one.

Two well-regarded former city department heads who left this year — because of strained relationships, to put it mildly, with the current mayor — think that would be good for the city.

If enough voters see the merit of having their city government run by a competent, professional manager who would be vetted and hired by the City Council, instead of by a mayor who may win an election but be otherwise unqualified for the job, then a change will be made.

Let’s be clear about this: The ballot measure, Proposition 1, is not an attempt to oust the current mayor, Tim Matthes, although if the measure passes it would eliminate the mayor’s position halfway through his four-year term (and require new elections for all City Council seats.) read more »

Editor's View

Constitutional protection of freedom of speech is one of our most fundamental and cherished rights. Each of us may say or otherwise express — with hardly any restraints imposed — whatever we choose. Whether our statements are factual or not; whether our opinion is keenly insightful or woefully uninformed; whether we are truthful and respectful as an Eagle Scout or as dissembling as the most brazen politician — we the people are free to speak our minds, for better or worse.

One example squarely in the worse category is a letter to the editor published on the Central Kitsap Reporter’s website the day before a rock band called Hell’s Belles played a concert at the Kitsap County Fair. The letter writer exercised her free speech rights by calling the all-female AC/DC tribute band “a satanic music group.” This self-proclaimed Christian also expressed her contempt for “you devil-worshippers,” though it’s not entirely clear if she was referring to the gals in the band, the taxpayer-funded fair’s organizers who booked the show, the Kitsap Sun for its feature story previewing the Hell’s Belles concert, or all of the above. read more »

Editor's View

Before the U.S. Supreme Court rulings on the Defense of Marriage Act and the Voting Rights Act sparked debate last month, the court handed down a little-noticed decision in a land-use case, and at least a few folks see the potential for a big impact.

The 11-year-old case involved a Florida landowner who sought a permit from a water management district to put a building and parking lot on 3.7 acres of his 15-acre property that consists mostly of wetlands. As environmental mitigation to get the permit, he offered to permanently conserve the rest of his property.

The water district said that was insufficient and wanted him to limit his development project to one acre and conserve the rest, or else pay for improvements on government-owned wetlands elsewhere in the same watershed, according to an article on The Atlantic Cities website. read more »

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