Ecology’s award-winning litter prevention campaign calls for public support

(OLYMPIA)- Ecology’s 2022 statewide litter study, the first one done in almost 20 years, made several shocking findings: Not only did it show that nearly 38 million pounds of waste accumulates each year, but Washington’s roads have more litter per mile than the national average. The We Keep WA Litter Free campaign (Por Un WA Impecable) is working to address these issues by changing the behaviors that lead to littering in the first place, according to a news release from Ecology. According to Ecology’s director Laura Watson, the public has an important role to play when it comes to     (read more)

Environmental penalties issued for first half of 2023

(OLYMPIA)— The Washington Department of Ecology issued $562,540 in penalties of $1,000 or more from Jan. 1, 2023 – June 30, 2023. $422,640 of that total was issued in the first quarter and $139,900 in the second quarter. A detailed list of the violations and resulting penalties is on Ecology's website, according to a news release from Ecology. Ecology works with thousands of businesses and individuals to help them comply with state laws. Penalties are issued in cases where non-compliance continues after Ecology has provided technical assistance or warnings, or for particularly serious violations. The money owed from penalties may be reduced from the issued amount due to settlement     (read more)

Public college enrollment still going down, threatening state’s progress on education equity

(OLYMPIA)- The precipitous pandemic-induced decline in college enrollment has slowed, according to a new report from the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC), but Washington’s public colleges continued to see fewer students enrolling in fall 2022 than in previous years. Ongoing enrollment declines could threaten long-term progress toward Washington's statewide attainment goal and further exacerbate inequities in educational outcomes for students, according to a news release from the WSAC. “Although more students are heading back to postsecondary education than we’ve seen in the last few years, we still have a ways to go to recover to pre-pandemic levels of     (read more)

Skagit County lifts outdoor burn ban for all unincorporated areas beginning September 27

(SKAGIT COUNTY)- Effective September 27, 2023, and until further notice, residential yard, and land-clearing fires are again permitted in areas within unincorporated Skagit County. Within unincorporated Skagit County, burn permits are still required for piles exceeding four feet by four feet, according to a news release from the county. Burn permit requests may be submitted by phone at 360-416-1840 and will be processed in the order received. Residential yard and land-clearing fires may contain only natural vegetation such as leaves, grass, and tree trimmings. Garbage, household trash, lumber, building construction waste, or demolition debris may not be burned. Please burn     (read more)

Family Reunification Day Celebration on September 25th

(SKAGIT COUNTY)- The Skagit Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday, September 19, 2023, signed a proclamation designating September 2023 as Family Reunification Month in Skagit County. The proclamation highlights the hard work by parents involved in the dependency process to be reunified with their children. The Skagit County Superior Court would like to invite you to celebrate Family Reunification Day on Monday, September 25th, 2023, from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. at the Skagit Valley Playfields at 2700 Martin Road, Mount Vernon WA. The family-friendly event will provide food, offer children’s games and activities, and recognize the families in attendance. Community partners will also host informational     (read more)