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March 12th new date for state mask mandate to lift in many indoor spaces

The state’s indoor mask requirement for many, but not all, public spaces will end at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, March 11, state officials announced Monday, Feb. 28. The requirement will be lifted for being inside restaurants, gyms, grocery stores, places of worship, schools and child care centers.
Masks will still be required in certain settings including inside health care facilities, corrections facilities and long-term care facilities. Transit riders and air travelers must still mask up because of federal law.
Private businesses, school districts and local health districts retain the right to set indoor mask mandates beyond the timeline.
Previously, the mask mandate was slated to end March 21. California, Oregon and Washington will all be following the March 12 date, their governors jointly announced. The faster timeline is because of declining case rates and hospitalizations across the western states, the governors said in the joint release.
New health guidance for K-12 schools will be issued as soon as March 7 so schools can prepare.


Everett Library's two branches expand their hours


Doug Ramsay photo

EVERETT — The city’s two public libraries extended their hours. The main library, 2702 Hoyt Ave., is set to be open again on Sundays; its hours will be 1-5 p.m. Both the main library and the Evergreen Branch, 9512 Evergreen Way, plan to extend their evening hours until 8 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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Turnover within Snohomish City Hall for city administrator

SNOHOMISH — Mayor Linda Redmon is replacing the city’s top manager.
City administrator Steve Schuller will be making way later this month for Heather Thomas, who today is a senior director at the Snohomish Health District as its Public and Government Affairs Manager.
Redmon privately offered the job to Thomas. The mayor said the change will better serve Snohomish.

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Snohomish wine festival a chance to taste local goods

SNOHOMISH — The Snohomish Wine Festival March 5 lets people sample a diverse range of vino with the ability to chat with the winemaker.
 At some tables, the producer could be your neighbor: a community of winemakers has grown up around town.

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Monroe Police officers to soon have body-worn cameras

MONROE — To comply with a new state law, the Monroe Police Department will equip each of its officers with a body-worn camera to record interrogations.

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Kids learning teamwork and camaraderie through hockey

SNOHOMISH COUNTY — The Seattle Junior Hockey Association (SJHA) is providing opportunities for children to learn how to play hockey for free or at a low cost, as the arrival of the Seattle Kraken NHL team has sparked an interest in the sport, including “Give Hockey a Try” event and beginner hockey sessions in the spring, one of which is coming March 5.

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News Bites for February 23, 2022


Monroe School District’s $34 million legal payout won’t come from its own cash

MONROE — The Monroe School District is offering a $34 million legal settlement to teachers and former students who were sickened at the Sky Valley Education Center by toxic chemical vapors emitted from the school’s old light fixtures and windowsill caulk. It is not being taken from the school district’s budget, though.

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Everett Mall mass vaccination site popular

EVERETT — The COVID-19 mass vaccination site inside the Everett Mall is lately seeing on average 50 to 100 people a day come for a shot.

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Special zone allowing growth along Avenue D approved

SNOHOMISH — Last week, the City Council voted 7-0 to approve the development guidelines for the Midtown District, including requirements that future buildings contain a minimum number of units inside and that new buildings at high-visibility intersections are constructed alongside the sidewalk to emphasize a pedestrian-friendly corridor.

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Monroe’s city court to add rehabilitation path

MONROE — This spring, the city’s municipal court will be establishing a therapeutic, intervention-based community court program. Community courts offer low-level, nonviolent criminals with substance use disorders or other behavioral health a pathway into treatment.

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Everett’s go-to gift shop to close after clocking 30 years

EVERETT — On March 19, J. Matheson Gifts, Kitchen & Gourmet takes its final bow. The announcement went out on social media Sunday, Feb. 6.
Closing is a personal decision to “step back and enjoy life,” owner and namesake Judy Matheson said.

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Roundabout to come to Avenue D at state Route 9

SNOHOMISH — A roundabout is coming this year on state Route 9 where it meets the intersection at Avenue D. It is scheduled to come this summer. WSDOT selected the contractor Dec. 27 as the next milestone for the $3.4 million project.

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Happy to be back with the Panthers

SNOHOMISH — Passing on your knowledge to a younger generation is an important part of life, and Snohomish High School’s Morgan Green does both as a teacher and coach today.

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League makes call to protect trees in future countywide planning policies

SNOHOMISH — Protecting and adding to urban tree canopies should be a new section written into the county’s general planning policy book, says The League of Women Voters of Snohomish County.

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PUD adds baseline fee to bills starting April

SNOHOMISH COUNTY — Your power bill will increase by about $3 per month starting this April, but so will your neighbor’s, as the Snohomish County PUD is adding a fixed base charge to its monthly rates.

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Food banks again able to help families fulfill own needs through Safeway grocery cards

SNOHOMISH — Safeway began distributing $50 gift cards to food banks such as the Snohomish Community Food Bank and Volunteers of America-Everett in mid-January and will continue through the month of February.

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For Coach Jansen, tennis is his sport, but mentorship is his game

SNOHOMISH — Spending 50 years doing a job you love sounds like a dream. For former Snohomish High School tennis coach Dick Jansen, he did it.  Jansen continues to be active as a mentor, which is one part of why he loved coaching.

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Everett Police program is to fight catalytic converter thefts

EVERETT — The Everett Police Department is setting up free events to engrave vehicle identification numbers on the converters in an attempt to curb thefts.

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Latest COVID-19 wave in Snohomish County largest yet as officials act to obtain tests

SNOHOMISH COUNTY — In just the first week of January, more than 10,000 people in Snohomish County tested positive for the coronavirus, a figure never seen before during the pandemic. Past waves maxed out at 2,000 people in a week.
New this week, the federal government will begin shipping at-home COVID tests for free. A mass vaccination site newly opened inside the Everett Mall. The county also is looking to buy thousands of test kits.

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Requirement that children get COVID-19 vaccine being evaluated

A state advisory group is currently exploring whether to recommend requiring children be vaccinated against COVID-19 to enter any school or licensed child care.

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Chiropractor’s sex-crimes case to see judge decide

SNOHOMISH — A settlement agreement was reached in the case of a Snohomish chiropractor accused of sexually touching women while on the job. Now, the chiropractor's fate will be decided by a judge instead of a jury, and the settlement reduced the number of criminal counts he is charged with. A judge approved the agreement Thursday, Jan. 6.

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Gipson Center back in the swing of things


Doug Ramsay photo

Alfred Gengnagel of Mukilteo returns the ball while playing table tennis at the Carl Gipson Center in Everett on Saturday, Feb. 12. Nearly 30 people came to play for the day’s activities. The Carl Gipson Center reopened Jan. 3 under the banner of Volunteers of America Western Washington, which manages the center and leases the building at 3025 Lombard Ave. from the city. The city dissolved its senior center program in spring 2020 as one of the numerous budget cuts it made in response to the pandemic.

Monroe Schools’ Superintendent Blasko put on leave by school board, to be investigated

MONROE — Emerging stories of retaliation and fear under School District Superintendent Justin Blasko that surfaced last week led to the school board to put Blasko on administrative leave and to hire a third-party investigator to probe the allegations. Meanwhile, multiple groups have stated opposition to Blasko, and two protests against the district occurred Dec. 13.

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Cold weather shelters open for the changing season

Cold weather shelters have begun to open their doors as temperatures in the region dip below freezing. Last year, people were directed to go to a building at the Evergreen State Fairgrounds due to social distancing requirements. This year these smaller shelters, all at churches, are opening their doors again for those in need.

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Riding the waves


Doug Ramsay photo

Brayden Gonzalez, 12, of Snohomish tries his best at staying on his feet as he surfs the wake on the Snohomish Aquatic Center’s FlowRider simulator Sunday, Jan. 30. Being the only indoor surf-simulator in the Seattle area, it crosses wakeboarding, snowboarding and skateboarding for an exciting and challenging experience. The center’s recreational pool is available for open swim Sundays from noon to 5:45 p.m. The Snohomish School District opened the center at 516 Maple Ave. in January 2014.





 

  

 

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