JUNE 9, 1997

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Local News

New deputy fire chief selected

deputy fire chief by Al Hooper
On June 3rd, the Woodinville Fire & Life Safety District Commissioners heard Chief Steve Smith recount his selection process for a deputy fire marshal. At the conclusion, Smith recommended that the board appoint Joel Kuhnhenn to the position, and the board voted to do so.
   Smith stated that all of the candidates were highly qualified, and each was praised by the selection committee. Kuhnhenn had been the temporary deputy fire marshal prior to receiving the appointment.
   The Commissioners also heard from the district's investment counselor, Tom Gray of Gray and Williams. Gray told Commissioners Don Leggett, Dave Callon, Don Eddy, and Frank Peep that his office provides several advantages over King County's standard handling of the district's funds. Gray explained that state laws control what types of investments can be made, for how long, etc. He also noted that the county will only compute interest after a month has passed, but that his firm invests district funds immediately upon receipt, thereby starting the compounding of interest right away.
   While all of the board members expressed satisfaction with Gray's answers, Peep asked to see a more complete accounting and listing of the district's current assets and investments. Gray answered that such a report would be sent to the district in a short time.

Citizen's concerns
   In a period of public comment, district resident Katherine Savora spoke briefly to the commissioners about an ongoing problem. She told them of her daughter's severe health conditions, and that open burning in a neighbor's yard has had serious consequences for the daughter. She requested that the district issue conditional use permits, and that she be notified when a burn permit is issued to this particular neighbor so that she can take steps to avoid further damaging her daughter's health. Savora stated that she was "more than willing to compromise with him, but it's hard to do so without advance warning."
   Noting that on several occasions she and her family have left her home during the burnings, she cites "hardship when those burns last well into the night, and we can't even sleep in our own home."
   Savora informed the commissioners that she had previously written to the chief about this problem, but before Smith could get back to her, she had been told of the commissioners' meeting, and had decided to attend. She stated that the neighbor in question was known to the board, but declined to name him during public comment. The commissioners thanked her for her report and stated they would look into the situation.
   The commissioners normally meet at 6:00 pm on the first and third Tuesdays of each month at the District Headquarters, located at 19900 144th Ave NE, and can be reached at 483-2131.