The Poulsbo Beat

News, insight and conversation about Poulsbo.

Poulsbo Port chooses new lawyer

November 5th, 2012 at 3:16 pm by Michelle Beahm
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The Port of Poulsbo Board of Commissioners passed a resolution Nov. 1 to retain the Chmelik, Sitkin and Davis law firm of Bellingham as legal advisers. Frank Chmelik was one of five lawyers that sent in a letter of interest when the port commissioners advertised for their need of a legal expert, said Commissioner Stephen Swann.

The law firm specializes in representing municipal governments, including ports.

The port allocated $40,000 for legal services in their 2013 budget, nearly double from their 2012 budget. Port Manager Kirk Stickels said the port is still challenging the city’s Shoreline Management Program, which was submitted to the state Department of Ecology in May. The services needed to review and propose changes to the SMP are why the commissioners projected a higher cost for legal services in the near future.

Girl Scouts earn award for parks video

October 22nd, 2012 at 10:14 am by Michelle Beahm
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Ever wonder about Poulsbo’s parks and what recreation classes are offered? Poulsbo’s Girl Scouts don’t want you to wonder anymore.

Girl Scout Troop 42062 earned their Silver Award after producing a video about the city’s Parks and Recreation department, and presenting the video to the City Council Oct. 17.

Martha Rabura, a freshman at Kingston High School; Madison Gale, a freshman at West Sound Academy; Annika Maule, a freshman at North Kitsap High School; and Kalena Ackerman-Clemons, a freshman at Kingston High School shot a video highlighting Poulsbo’s parks, and an overview of the classes and events through the recreation programs.

Each girl put in more than 50 hours, which began in September. Annika said she liked working with the other girls, and Martha and Kalena said they enjoyed learning how to film and produce a digital project.

To earn the Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards, the scouts must complete three community service projects. The girls earned their Bronze Award by making blankets for local children and homeless youth in need, in 2009. Their Gold Award will be an individual service project.

Poulsbo Mayor Becky Erickson presented the four girls with certificates of appreciation at the council meeting. The video can be seen at the Parks and Recreation website, at

From right, Kalena Ackerman-Clemons, Annika Maule, Martha Rabura and Madison Gale, with Poulsbo Mayor Becky Erickson. The Girl Scouts earned their Silver Award with a video they produced about Poulsbo Parks and Recreation department, available on the city’s website.

Shoreline plan open for comments

October 4th, 2012 at 4:19 pm by Michelle Beahm
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Residents who still have questions or comments about Poulsbo’s Shoreline Master Program — a plan that regulates development along four miles of Liberty Bay and local wetlands and creeks — have one last chance.

The city submitted its updated plan to the Department of Ecology in July. Ecology opened its comment period Sept. 24. Comments are being accepted until Oct. 26 at 5 p.m.

Comments can be submitted to Joe Burcar via email at; or to Department of Ecology, Northwest Regional Office, c/o Joe Burcar, 3190 160th Ave. SE, Bellevue, Wash., 98008.

Poulsbo Port budget up for review

September 10th, 2012 at 3:30 pm by Michelle Beahm
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The Port of Poulsbo is currently taking comments on their 2013 budget.

Staff presented the draft budget to commissioners at their last meeting, Sept. 6. The draft is available for review at the port’s main office at the Port of Poulsbo dock, 18809 Front St.

Public comments will also be taken at a public hearing, scheduled during the next commissioner meeting, Sept. 20, in the port’s multipurpose room on E dock, 7 p.m. The commission is set to “fix” and adopt the budget at the end of the hearing, according to Carol Tripp, staff accountant.

At the Sept. 6 meeting, the commission also discussed their hosting of the 14th annual Classic Yacht Association visit Sept. 21-23, where 32 boats will be in attendance.

Shoreline plan comments open late September

August 22nd, 2012 at 11:18 am by Michelle Beahm
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Joe Burcar, shoreline planner with the Department of Ecology, said he has received Poulsbo’s Shoreline Management Program plan and is reviewing the document to make sure it is complete. He said the public comment period, to be submitted to Ecology, will probably be open in late September or early October.

Review the city’s submitted plan at

Lessons learned during Suquamish 5K

August 21st, 2012 at 4:39 pm by Michelle Beahm
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I did not train for my latest 5K.

I knew the Chief Seattle Days route would be a bit tough — I come from the relatively shallow fields of Iowa, where the hills are gradual, while you folks in the Northwest have to contend with sharp inclines that were jolted up from the sea. Every hill I huffed and puffed my way up soon sent me downhill, which killed my poor, unpracticed shins.

But I was joined by a lot of smiles, and even a Golden Retriever puppy, on a slightly overcast Sunday, Aug. 19. Volunteers cheered us on at every turn and at the two water stations — although I had my music on too loud to actually hear their words (I need a good beat to run to or I turn into jelly).

The North Kitsap and Bainbridge Island communities are flush with “Fun Runs” for many charities, organizations and events. I have run in my fair share since moving here a year ago. But I enjoyed my Suquamish run the most. As the run organizer pointed out, this was also a cultural run.

I passed by Chief Seattle’s grave, the new museum and Old Man House Park — which I hadn’t been to yet — and through the different neighborhoods of downtown Suquamish. There were houses that look jumbled together, as every generation added a layer and looked to be shared by many family members, as well as newer-looking homes that tried to capture as much view of the water as possible. Neighbors came out of their homes to join in the cheering or begin their own walk down to the House of Awakened Culture to join the festivities. I was just running a measly 3.1 miles, but from the cheers of Suquamish residents, you’d think I was at the tail end of my first marathon. Did I look that out of breath?

I sped up at the last bit of the run, which took us right along the vendor booths — thanks, Suquamish, of course I want to buy all those crafts, and oh yeah, an Indian taco. I finished, trying to hide my red face from the photographer, and stretched while I watched the rest come in. One woman received one of the loudest cheers as she sped up at the last turn, a determined but gleeful look on her face as she finished with arms in the air.

I won’t tell you my time, but rest assured, I did not finish in the top 10. But when the last two people crossed the finish line, one pushing a jogging stroller, the “fun” part of the run became apparent. Water was passed out generously, as well as oranges, bananas and donuts. The top five men and women runners were presented with prizes, and the first place runner received a special blanket. I was pretty psyched for my T-shirt and participation ribbon.

This was only the second year Suquamish hosted an official fun run — in years past, avid runners would just kind of take off and time themselves. Teresa Barron, the grants specialist at the Suquamish Tribe and 5K volunteer coordinator, said because Chairman Leonard Forsman is such an avid runner, they organized the first official Chief Seattle Days 5K and Elder Walk last year, to about 30 participants. This year 52 people ran, jogged and walked.

Fun runs are excellent community activities to be a part of. You get your exercise, meet new people, see new sites (or at least from a different, slower perspective), and contribute to a good cause. The Chief Seattle Days run entry fee benefitted the Suquamish Youth Center, which provides activities and homework help to kids age 10-19. The center offers sports like basketball and softball, and a prevention group that raises awareness about the dangers of tobacco, domestic violence and teen pregnancy. The center also teaches the Tribal traditions such as cedar and wool weaving, beading, and Tribal history. Many of the youth involved also participate in the Chief Seattle Days and Pow Wow Renewal royalty pageants.

The run contributed $680 to the youth center for healthy ventures.

So, as I learned more about the Suquamish community during my run, I also learned not to underestimate these Washington hills.

See more photos of Chief Seattle Days, taken by Suquamish spokeswoman April Leigh, at

Chief Seattle Days 5K Fun Run and Walk
1 James Wilson, 16 19:02
2 Nicholas Thibault, 17 20:41
3 Joe Wilson, 14 21:51
4 Lars Larson 22:23
5 Tyler Billings, 15 22:38

1 Rose Catah 23:18
2 Caitlin Murray 24:37
3 Sande Watson 25:40
4 Karen Dorsey 27:02
5 Lisa Rey Thomas 27:47 (last year overall winner)

Public meetings cancelled Wednesday

August 10th, 2012 at 12:14 pm by Michelle Beahm
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The city is taking a break Wednesday.

The Poulsbo City Council cancelled their Aug. 15 meeting due to lack of agenda items. Mayor Becky Erickson commented at the Aug. 8 meeting that the Aug. 15 meeting was scheduled to be a joint meeting with the North Kitsap School Board, which elected not to attend.

The Finance/Administration and Public Safety committees also canceled their Aug. 15 meetings. Finance is reschedule for Aug. 22 at 6 p.m. in the third floor conference room at City Hall. Public Safety originally rescheduled their meeting for Aug. 22, but cancelled that meeting as well.

Councilmembers discuss hotel/motel tax at economic development meeting Wednesday

July 31st, 2012 at 9:43 am by Michelle Beahm
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A quorum of city councilmembers will attend the Economic Development Committee meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 1, 4 p.m. in the third floor conference room, City Hall, 200 NE Moe St., Poulsbo.

In attendance will be Councilmembers Ed Stern, David Musgrove, Connie Lord, Linda Berry-Maraist and Mayor Becky Erickson.

The agenda can be found here.

Poulsbo shoreline master plan at Ecology; comment soon

July 27th, 2012 at 1:28 pm by Michelle Beahm
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POULSBO — For residents with more questions, concerns and comments about Poulsbo’s shoreline plan, they will soon be able to voice their opinions to the Department of Ecology.

The council on July 11 approved sending the city’s draft of the Shoreline Management Program plan to the Department of Ecology, with Councilwoman Linda Berry-Maraist dissenting.

Berry-Maraist voted nay, as she did at the May 2 meeting, because of two concerns: for businesses located in the 200-foot shoreline jurisdiction, restrictions on development opportunities are too “excessive;” and she feels the plan misses an opportunity to encourage private as well as public shoreline improvements within the restoration plan.

Here is a breakdown of the commercial impact of the SMP:
— A commercial building located outside the 100-foot buffer (the 200-foot shoreline jurisdiction zone) with a non-water-dependent or -related use is conforming. Buildings and business within the buffer are non-conforming.
— If a business within the shoreline buffer (100 feet) suffers an unintentional disaster, such as a fire, the property owner may rebuild to its current footprint (requirements listed at chapter 16.08.480). If outside of the shoreline buffer but within the 200-foot jurisdiction zone, the building may be rebuilt and even expand, provided an area equivalent to 25 percent of the new building square footage be a water-oriented/water-related/water-dependent use, either inside the building or on the property.
— All new development within the shoreline buffer must be a water-dependent and/or water-related use if the property has direct access to Liberty Bay. If the property is separated from the bay, 25 percent of the new square footage is required to meet this requirement.

Not much changes for residential development in the new plan. Over-water structures, including docks, boat lifts and haul-outs, are still prohibited in all zones for residential use.

The shoreline use table, which explains what activities are allowed, allowed conditionally, or prohibited, can be found on pages 22-23 of the plan. The city sent the plan to Ecology in late July. Once received, Ecology will open a minimum 30-day comment period, most likely in August, according to planner Keri Weaver.

Public comments will be accepted while Ecology internally reviews the document. Ecology must send all the comments back to Poulsbo within 15 days of the period’s close. Poulsbo then has 45 days to prepare a response, including any potential changes. Ecology has another 30 days to make formal, written findings as to whether the SMP is consistent with the Shoreline Management Act guidelines.

Ecology can then approve the document as originally submitted, approve with the possible changes made from comments, or direct Poulsbo go to back and work on the document more.

The plan is available for the public to review at

Port Ludlow man shows off his colors

June 27th, 2012 at 1:40 pm by Michelle Beahm
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LaMoyne Jevne says America has done a lot for him, and he is displaying his thanks.

The Port Ludlow man fills his yard with 150 American flags every Flag Day (June 14) and Fourth of July — including a Betsy Ross 1776 replica flag.

The retired Navy man also lectures on proper flag etiquette.

If you’re looking for something new to do this July 4, head to 1473 Thorndyke Road in Port Ludlow, where Jevne is saying “Happy Birthday” to the U.S. from about 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.

More information can be found at this Peninsula Daily News article.

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About Michelle Beahm

Michelle Beahm covers the Poulsbo and North Kitsap beat for the North Kitsap Herald. Check the Poulsbo Beat for information about events around the city. Have a news tip, email

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