OPALCO fiber project on south San Juan Island kicks off March 20

Construction begins on March 20, 2017 to install fiber optic cables along Cattle Point Road from Eagle Cove Drive all the way through San Juan National Historical Park to the major road re-alignment project south of Jackle’s Beach Lagoon. While OPALCO installs backbone infrastructure for the electric grid, both Rock Island Communications and CenturyLink will participate in the project. The three utilities often cooperate on construction projects to take advantage of the opportunity for maintenance and upgrades when trenching is involved in order to keep costs down and minimize impact on the community.

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Rep. Larsen: ‘by any meaningful measurement Trumpcare is a disaster when compared against the Affordable Care Act’

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Rep. Rick Larsen (WA-02)  released the following statement March 13, 2017 after the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office released its much-anticipated score detailing projected impacts of Trumpcare, the GOP health care bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The report found that under Trumpcare, 24 million fewer Americans would have health insurance over the next decade, average healthcare premiums would rise by 15-20% over the next two years and critical federal healthcare funding to states would be cut by $880 billion. Previous reports from the Joint Committee on Taxation show that Trumpcare will also provide a $600 billion tax break – primarily for the wealthiest Americans.

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CBO Report: 21 million more uninsured by 2020, 24 million by 2026 if Trumpcare enacted

The Congressional Budget Office released its estimates of the cost of the American Health Care Act - also know as Trumpcare or Ryancare on March 13, 2017. An estimated 24 million people who are currently insured under the Affordable Care Act - Obamacare - would be uninsured by 2026. That would bring the total of uninsured citizens to 52 million.

In San Juan County, 13.4 percent of residents are on medicaid and 7.8 percent are uninsured. The county's percentage of population on medicaid is the lowest in the state. Almost half of the county's population 48.9 percent are on private insurance and 29.9 percent are on medicare. The medicare percentage comes in second in the state behind Jefferson County which has 32.2 percent of its population on medicare. 

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Staff got a little help from FHHS seniors Friday night

A basket by a Friday Harbor High School senior broke the tie just before the buzzer in the annual Senior/Staff basketball game Friday, March 10, 2017. His shot into the competitor's hoop won the game for the staff. The revelry included boys basketball team members in cheerleader uniforms, cheerleaders in tutus, audience members hauled into jail. Even the two referees were jailed for two minutes during the final period.

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March 14 and 15: Kindergarten registration at FHES (info in English and Spanish)

All parents of children who will be five years old on or before August 31, 2017 are invited to meet with Friday Harbor Elementary school staff and begin the kindergarten registration process. Kindergarten registration will be held on Tuesday March 14 and Wednesday, March 15, 2017. Please call the Friday Harbor Elementary School office at 378.5209 to schedule an appointment.

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WSF Hyak earns its gold stripe

WSDOT photo

Washington State Ferries Hyak turned 50 years old this week. It was the first of four Super Class Ferries built in San Diego in 1967-68. The Hyak was one of five ferries that achieved 100 percent mechanical reliability in 2016. It sailed 51,000 nautical miles without breakdowns or missed trips. Hyak has not been rebuilt since it was constructed. The three other Super Class ferries - Kaleetan, Yakima, Elwha - have been rebuilt.

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