Snohomish County provides free Household Hazardous Waste disposal in Everett

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News 

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the average U.S. household generates more than twenty pounds of household hazardous waste (HHW) each year for an estimated total of 530,000 tons nationally. HHW items include products for your car, such as anti-freeze, motor oil and brake fluid as well as products around the house, like fluorescent light bulbs, paint, cleaning products and pesticides. These items are often accompanied by warning labels that read caution flammable, poison or corrosive. Improper disposal of these items, like pouring excess paint, oil or chemicals down the drain, in the trash or off the side of the road, are leading to serious concerns for Mother Earth and all of her inhabitants.

“For environmental pollution prevention purposes, trying to control storm water pollutants or toxins in the environment is paramount to folks who are interested in protecting salmon,” states Tulalip Planning Code Enforcement Officer, David Nellis. “It’s very important that we are working to prevent toxins like paint, spent fuels and these types of things from entering storm water runoff. When it rains, it hits paint that was spilled on the ground and the paint rushes off and gets into the creek and then flows downstream and salmon eggs get that covered on them. It’s either causing damage to the salmon eggs by affecting their DNA or killing them.”

At the turn of the 21st century, the EPA conducted a study which showed that pharmaceuticals and personal health care products (PPCP) in bodies of water were becoming an ‘emerging concern’ for fish. Overtime, the PPCPs bio-accumulate in the fish’s tissue, which can lead to endocrine system disruption causing reproductive and behavioral problems for the fish. Though that particular study did not focus on HHW like motor oil and paint thinner, it did show that the chemicals eventually work their way back up the food chain and now pose a problem for people.

“You can only eat an x amount of salmon and tuna now because of mercury; we have mercury in our light bulbs,” David explains. “These are called PBTs, or persistent bio-accumulative toxins, that the EPA tries to keep out of the environment. Some of them are in paints, light bulbs, and pesticides – a lot of these things we spray outdoors or spill accidentally. When they get into a body of water, they get into our body by getting into the bodies of the things we eat. And when that accumulates it can cause problems.

“The EPA states if you’re pregnant, you should only eat one meal of tuna a month,” he continues. “Because the level of mercury, it can interfere with the central nervous system development in children ranging from learning disabilities, to severe neurological damage to death being the worst case. What have we done? This is healthy food. We should be able to eat fish every day. All these things are impacted by things we put in the environment. Every salmon egg that dies is a salmon that won’t be smoking on the grill and providing food for ceremonies. Every one we can save, by not allowing pollution in the environment, will benefit our society. So, how can we make it better? By recycling and disposing these harmful products in a safe and proper way.”

The Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Station is located at 434 McDougall Avenue, off Broadway in Everett.

Snohomish County provides free disposal of HHW products for their residents at the Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Station in Everett. The station accepts a variety of HHW products and is located at 3434 McDougall Avenue, off Broadway, a block adjacent to the Brown Bear Car Wash. The station collects and separates HHW to be recycled, consolidated and disposed of safely. They will also accept hazardous waste from small businesses that qualify as a small quantity generator, by appointment and for a fee.

“We take household items,” explains Ginger Swint, Moderate Risk Waste Specialist at the HHW Drop-Off Station. “Unwanted cleaners, pesticides, automotive, florescent lamps, and all batteries including car batteries. We don’t take sharps, radioactives, explosives, ammunition or empty containers. All the fluorescent [bulbs] are taken down to Seattle where they capture the mercury and phosphate, and the glass and everything else is recycled. I think this station is essential because it keeps [HHW] out of the waterways and away from children. It gives us an opportunity as a community to dispose of it properly instead of throwing it in the garbage.”

“They do chemical manipulation and restore it, reuse it in another product or dispose of it entirely in a way that doesn’t negatively affect our health and resources,” says David. “We can take some these spent fuels like for boat engines, you put additives in it and after a year it’s not good anymore, it kind of turns into lacquer. You can take all this stuff and take it to the household hazardous waste disposal site and give it to them. If you’re a private home owner they’ll take it for free and that gets it out of our waste streams. You’re essentially taking this massive pile of stuff that’s causing our demise – the demise of salmon, shellfish and poisoning people, and making it a little less than before. It’s more consolidated and compact. If we can try to remove some of these from the environment, then we can curb some of these man made problems.”

The Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Station is open Wednesday through Saturday between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. To view a complete list of what the drop-off station accepts and does not accept please visit

Activists Have Been Blocking an Oil Train in Everett Since Six This Morning

Police look like they might be moving to extraction. @risingtidena @kxlblockade
Police look like they might be moving to extraction. @risingtidena @kxlblockade


Tue, Sep 2, 2014 at 3:00 PM. The Stranger

Around 6 am this morning, Abby Brockway—an activist, mother, and small-business owner—and a few others set up a tripod on northbound train tracks in Everett and have been blocking a BNSF train carrying Tesoro oil ever since.

“The view up here is beautiful,” she said by phone a few minutes ago. “I saw an eagle.” Police officers arrived on the scene about an hour or so after the tripod went up and have been trying to coax her down (she says they’re claiming that if she descends voluntarily, they’ll go easy on the charges and fines*). Firefighters with long ladders have approached to try and yank her down, but Brockway has a “blackbear” lockdown device that she uses to chain herself to the tripod in between phone calls.

“Lots of big truckers are honking in support, because we’re also here in support of labor unions,” Brockway said after I asked her about a caterwauling noise in the background. “BNSF wants to increase profits by decreasing train conductors and reducing inspections—its business is increasing, so I don’t know why they’d want to cut costs, but they do.” (BNSF has been pushing to reduce train crews down to a single person, which is not only bad for labor, but a potential safety problem—especially when we’re talking about fossil fuels moving through populous areas.)

Brockway and the other activists, many of them affiliated with Rising Tide (you might remember that name from the preemptive visits they were paid by FBI agents last summer) say they’re blockading the oil train for three major reasons:

First, they want to highlight the rapid growth of shipping oil by train—growth that also has been putting farmers in a pinch by delaying shipments of apples, grain, and even coal.


  • Rising Tide

Second, they want to draw attention to how much money Tesoro devotes to campaign contributions (in our state, Democrat Suzan DelBene and Republicans Doc Hastings, Rick Larsen, and Cathy McMorris Rodgers have fed at that trough) and question whether that money has led to dithering about better regulation of fossil-fuel train shipments. “Governor Inslee is just one of those Democrats who knows what to do, but loves to just keep studying,” Brockway said from her perch. “He needs to take a bolder move for our security.”

Third, they want to highlight BNSF’s attempts to cut down on labor costs by reducing the number of workers on any given train.

Delaney Piper, a spokesperson for Rising Tide, said most of the law-enforcement response has been from the Everett police, but that at least one FBI agent has shown up, as well as an officer covered in police gear but who is wearing no identification and refuses to answer questions.

Piper added that police kicked all of the supporting demonstrators—who, she said, have ranged between 20 and 40 over the course of the day—out of the rail yard, claiming that they had all already been arrested and might be arraigned because the police had taken photos of them trespassing. (That’s a new one—I’ve never heard of arrest-via-photograph before.)

Brockway said she has provisions and plans to stay on top of the tripod for “as long as possible.”

“I’m petitioning our government,” she said. “I’ve tried standing in the streets, writing politicians on climate policy, going to hearings, I’ve never missed an election, I go to lots of marches and rallies, I’ve helped form alliances with tribal people in Washington State and also with railroad labor—they want jobs and we’re not against jobs. But I want jobs that are sustainable and that make sense for this region instead of this carbon bubble, which is the most destructive thing. And when it’s gone, those towns will be ghost towns.”


A recent Tweet from Rising Tide:
* A quick reminder to everyone: Police saying they’ll “go easy” on you in a courtroom is not a binding agreement. Moreover, police don’t actually control what happens in a courtroom—lawyers and judges do. If you’d like to read an extended account of FBI agents and Seattle police officers making promises they can’t keep about court proceedings during an interrogation, see this story. But always, always remember that any given law-enforcement official doesn’t actually have control over what a judge or prosecutor will think or do.

Coal, oil train protest blocks Everett rail yard

By: Associated Press, September 2, 2014


(Photo: Emily Johnston)
(Photo: Emily Johnston)


EVERETT, Wash. – About a dozen protesters have blocked railroad tracks at a Burlington Northern Santa Fe yard in Everett.

Railroad spokesman Gus Melonas says some have chained themselves to the tracks. He says the demonstration that started about 6 a.m. Tuesday has blocked freight trains at the yard although the main line remains open.

Everett police spokesman Aaron Snell says officers are standing by. They’ll let BNSF police handle the situation because it’s a trespassing issue.

The demonstration was announced by the group Rising Tide Seattle to protest shipments of oil and coal by train and proposed terminals in the Northwest.

Snohomish County utility awaits approval for tidal turbine


In this June 13, 2011 file photo, the Energy Tide 2, the largest tidal energy turbine ever deployed in the U.S., appears on a barge in Portland, Maine. Scientists at the University of Washington have determined that Admiralty Inlet, in Puget Sound, is an excellent place to test tidal turbines. (AP Photo/File)
In this June 13, 2011 file photo, the Energy Tide 2, the largest tidal energy turbine ever deployed in the U.S., appears on a barge in Portland, Maine. Scientists at the University of Washington have determined that Admiralty Inlet, in Puget Sound, is an excellent place to test tidal turbines. (AP Photo/File)

BY Tim Haeck  on January 15, 2014


A public electric utility in Everett could be among the first in the nation to generate power from the tides.

Scientists at the University of Washington have determined that Admiralty Inlet, in Puget Sound, is an excellent place to test tidal turbines.

“Admiralty Inlet stacks up pretty well, worldwide, in terms of its actual tidal energy resource,” said Craig Collar, assistant general manager at Snohomish County Public Utility District No. 1. Currents have been clocked at 6-7 knots, he said.

The PUD is pledged to maintain carbon-free power sources. It has wind power and is exploring geo-thermal energy, as well.

“We’re highly dependent on the Bonneville Power Administration,” said Collar. “That’s a lot of eggs in one basket and it only makes sense to diversify.”

The advantage of tidal power: tides are reliable and predictable.

The disadvantage is you have to pick the right spot.

The utility wants to place two turbines, each about 20-feet in diameter, on the bottom of Admiralty Inlet, 200 feet below the surface. The more than $20 million pilot project, funded in half by the U.S. Energy Department, is at least six years in development. It’s been delayed, in part, by a challenge from a California company that owns two trans-ocean fiber optic telecommunications cables.

“The turbines, as currently proposed, are dangerously close to our cable,” said Kurt Johnson, chief financial officer of Pacific Crossing. He’s worried that turbine deployment and maintenance could damage the cables.

“Pacific Crossing is not against tidal energy, or even this specific project. All we’re really asking is that the PUD locate the turbines a safe distance from our cable.”

“In fact, we have done that,” said Collar. “This project is now several hundred feet away from their cable, so the crux of the matter is our project simply doesn’t represent any risk whatsoever to their cable.”

Collar said an environmental review by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), draws the same conclusion.

“The facts are they’ve got a six-inch wide lease, we’re several hundred feet away, we have a deployment accuracy of less than ten feet, we won’t use any anchors at all in the deployment operation or maintenance of these devices,” said Collar.

Tribal and environmental groups have also challenged the project out of concern for fish and orcas.

“But the truth is these turbines rotate quite slowly, more the speed that we’d visualize for a turnstile, taking several seconds just to make a single revolution,” Collar explained.

The utility is awaiting approval of a license from FERC and some state and local permits. The soonest the turbines could be deployed would be 2015.

It’s not known if tidal power will prove effective around here.

The Snohomish County PUD No.1 will hook up the turbines to the power grid but Collar said this pilot project is more about collecting data than generating electricity. If approved, the turbines will operate for three-to-five years and be removed.

Free Public Skate and Vaccination Clinic, January 11

Flu and Whooping Cough Shots for Adults

Who: Free Public Skate and Vaccination Clinic

 When: Saturday, January 11

· 2:30 – 5:30 pm free skating for clinic clients and their kids

· 3:30 – 5:30 pm adult-only shots for flu and whooping cough

 What: The Everett Public Facilities District and Global Spectrum are putting flu season on ice again in 2014!

On Saturday, January 11, Comcast Arena and the Comcast Community Ice Rink will host a free public skate and vaccination clinic to serve uninsured and lowincome adults in the Snohomish County area. Volunteers and staff from the Snohomish Health District, Mukilteo-South Everett Rotary, and Walgreens will provide adults with flu shots and whooping cough vaccinat ions from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm.

Guests of the event will skate on the Comcast Arenas main ice rink where the Everett Silvertips play their home games. Skating is from 2:30 to 5:30 pm. Guests are asked to enter through the Comcast Community Ice Rink entrance (Broadway).

Flu season has begun in Snohomish County. Getting a flu shot every year is the best way to prevent infection. Vaccination is also the best protection against whooping cough. Whooping cough, also known as pertussis, is no longer at epidemic levels in Snohomish County, but cases of it are still being confirmed and it can be deadly to babies. It is especially important that all pregnant women and people who are around newborns including teens, grandparents, and childcare workers get the booster shot to protect the infant.

Download vaccine information sheets at

Visit for more

Everett’s Robinson likely to become newest member of state House

By Jerry Cornfield, The Herald, December 12, 2013

Democrats are hoping the die is cast for June Robinson, of Everett, to become a member of the state House of Representatives next week.

Robinson emerged Tuesday night as the party’s top choice to fill the 38th Legislative District seat John McCoy vacated when he moved to the Senate.

She finished ahead of Jennifer Smolen of Marysville and Deborah Parker of Tulalip in balloting by the district’s precinct committee officers.

On Monday, the Snohomish County Council will interview the three nominees, then appoint one to represent residents in Everett, Tulalip and a slice of Marysville through the 2014 election.

The four Democrats and one Republican on the County Council are expected to respect the wishes of the party members and Robinson could be sworn in Monday afternoon.

Robinson’s resume of community service is impressive and she’s got a track record of involvement in the Democratic Party. And she racked up endorsements for the appointment from lawmakers like McCoy and Rep. Hans Dunshee, D-Snohomish, as well as former Sen. Nick Harper.

Yet the next few days could be interesting, should Smolen, Parker or both be of the mind to try and persuade County Council members to buck the party activists.

Parker entered the competition at the quiet urging of U.S. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell. Those are good friends to have if they’ll make a phone call on your behalf.

And Smolen did work alongside council Chairwoman Stephanie Wright last year and state Sen. Steve Hobbs, D-Lake Stevens, the year before that. She knows how politics is played in Snohomish County and Olympia.

Though each can make a case for themselves to the council these next few days, they’ll probably need to wait to make it for voters next year if they really want the job.

All signs point to the die being cast for Robinson becoming the newest member of the Legislature.

A little ways south, a race is starting to take shape for a seat in the 21st Legislative District.

State Sen. Paull Shin, D-Edmonds, intends to retire when his term ends in 2014 and Rep. Marko Liias, D-Everett, is campaigning with a full head of steam to replace him.

That means Liias’ seat will be opening up in the district which encompasses Edmonds, Lynnwood and south Everett. Like the 38th, it has a history of electing Democrats.

Lillian Ortiz-Self, of Mukilteo, is a Democrat who has wasted little time in pursuing it. She launched her campaign in late October and hauled in a little more than $5,000 in contributions in the first few hours.

This is her first bid for state office but the Everett High School counselor is no political novice.

She is in her second term on Washington’s Commission on Hispanic Affairs and serves on separate committees dealing with the issues of discipline, academic achievement and educational opportunities in the public schools system.

On the Republican side, Jeff Thorp said he is gearing up to run.

Thorp, who was just elected to a third term on the Mukilteo School Board, would be making his second bid for state office. He lost to Mike Cooper in 2002 and contemplated a run against former Rep. Brian Sullivan in 2004 then decided against it.

With the prospect of an open seat, more candidates are expected to step up before the filing deadline next May.

Shared responsibilities: Celebrate World AIDS Day in Everett, Dec. 1

Events in Everett Sunday afternoon; free HIV tests by appointment for at-risk people Dec.2, 4, & 6
Source: Snohomish Health District
SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. – The public is welcome to free events in downtown Everett to commemorate World AIDS Day 2013 on Sunday, Dec. 1. Three community partners will sponsor a memorial walk and program that afternoon to build awareness of the impact HIV/AIDS has on our community. All activities take place at the Snohomish Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Everett, Wash. Testing opportunities are available at the Health District Dec. 2-6.
Sunday, Dec. 1
1 p.m. Remembrance walk leaves the Snohomish Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., goes to AIDS Memorial of Snohomish County at 3021 Wetmore Ave., Everett
 2 p.m. Return to the Health District for a program, music, and light refreshments
The afternoon program includes remarks by Rev. Julie Montague from Everett Unity Church, and comments from Snohomish County residents living with HIV/AIDS. The program also features music by local musicians Terri Anson and Savannah Woods. The program is free and open to the public.
Local sponsors include Snohomish Health District, Snohomish County Gay Men’s Task Force, and AIDS Project Snohomish County. For information about AIDS Project Snohomish County, please contact Jeannine Fosca at 425.923.7656 or
World AIDS Day events remember those lost to AIDS, support those living with the disease, reinforce the need to combat stigma, discrimination and intolerance, and underscore the need for routine HIV screening.
“The medical community has made great advances in treating HIV/AIDS in recent years,” said Dr. Gary Goldbaum, Health Officer and Director of the Snohomish Health District. “However, there still is no cure. Early treatment is critical to both help those who are infected and to prevent spread to others. Screening is key”
An estimated one in five Americans infected with HIV is unaware of it. According to the Washington State Department of Health, 1,130 people in Snohomish County have been diagnosed with HIV since 1982. Screening for tuberculosis is also recommended for HIV-positive people.
Monday, Dec. 2
9 a.m.-noon, 1-5 p.m. — Free rapid-tests for HIV offered to anyone at risk of the disease, the Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Suite 108. Call for appointment: 425.339.5298.
Tuesday, Dec. 3
3-6 p.m., special health event for gay and bisexual men – tests available for HIV, Hepatitis C, and syphilis; also vaccinations for Hepatitis A and B. Come to the Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Suite 106, Everett. No appointment needed.
Wednesday, Dec, 4
9 a.m.-noon, 1-5 p.m. — Free rapid-tests for HIV offered to anyone at risk of the disease, the Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Suite 108. Call for appointment: 425.339.5298.
Friday, Dec. 6
 9 a.m.-noon, 1-5 p.m. — Free rapid-tests for HIV offered to anyone at risk of the disease, the Health District, 3020 Rucker Ave., Suite 108. Call for appointment: 425.339.5298.
Established in 1959, the Snohomish Health District works for a safer and healthier community through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. For information about our HIV/AIDS education and outreach services, and to make an appointment call 425.339.5298. Please visit our Facebook page and website:

Teen Nights return to the Schack Art Center

 Herald staff
October 8, 2013
Hot Shop glass blowing at Everett Schack Art CenterPhoto from
Hot Shop glass blowing at Everett Schack Art Center
Photo from


EVERETT — The open studio nights for teens returns this week to the Schack Art Center with the first one happening from 6-8 p.m. Thursday.

The free, after-hours events at the center at 2921 Hoyt Ave. include up to four different hands-on art projects where teens get to meet and work with local artists, as well as refreshments and glassblowing demonstrations.

Projects at this week’s event include “Neon Oil Pastel Leaves” with Colleen Temple, “Bird Masks” with Anna Mastronardi Novak and printmaking with Bonnie AuBuchon.

Schack Teen Nights started in fall 2011 as a way for local teens to learn about the Schack Art Center’s programs and classes. The studio nights with hands-on, take-away projects have been popular in the past.

The Schack Art Center is an admission free, visual arts center in downtown Everett featuring art exhibits from locally and internationally known professional artists, as well as emerging young talents. It features a state-of the-art glass blowing studio that allows the public to watch local artists work.

For more information, go to

10th Anniversary Block Party

block party

The Comcast Arena is turning ten!  To celebrate this milestone, Global Spectrum, management for the Comcast Arena at Everett, is throwing a 10th Anniversary Block Party and everyone is invited!

For just the third time in the building’s history, Hewitt Avenue will be closed off to accommodate the day’s festivities. The celebration begins with the Bubble Run 5K at 9 am with an anticipated attendance of 4,000 participants. After the race, the party begins!

From 11 am to 5 pm, guests can expect great music from local bands, delicious food and beverages from food truck vendors, and interactive games the whole family can enjoy. The night continues when the Everett Silvertips take to the ice at 7 pm for their season opener vs. Prince George.

The Block Party is one of the first events slated for the upcoming year that will celebrate the building’s 10th Anniversary.

Interested vendors should call 425.322.2626 for further information.





Countywide emergency preparedness fair set for Sept. 21

EVERETT — When disasters hit home, are you prepared?

If not, now’s the time to take the first step toward being ready. September is National Preparedness Month, and this year, the focus is on turning awareness into action.

“It’s not enough to know what to do in an emergency,” Snohomish County Executive John Lovick said. “We need to take real steps to prepare ourselves and our families. If an earthquake or major storm hits and you’re trapped in your home, you should make sure that you have the resources you need to make it through.”

A countywide “Empower” preparedness fair on Saturday, Sept. 21, is designed to help local residents find preparedness ideas, tips and tools for emergency planning. The free event runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Snohomish Health District’s atrium, located at 3020 Rucker Ave. in Everett, and is cosponsored by the Snohomish Health District, Snohomish County Department of Emergency Management, the Medical Reserve Corps and city of Everett Office of Emergency Management. Low-income and uninsured adults can also get free whooping cough shots at the preparedness fair.

Preparing for an emergency doesn’t have to be overwhelming. The county Department of Emergency Management recommends taking one step each day toward emergency preparedness:

• Add one more item to your emergency kit. If you don’t have a kit, start one today.

• Find local sources of information that will help you before, during and after an emergency.

• Identify an out-of-area contact your household can notify in an emergency.

• Buy or prepare nonperishable food and water.

• Identify alternate routes to and from school or work.

For more helpful tips and information about National Preparedness Month and the Ready Campaign, visit, or call 800-BE-READY or 800-SE-LISTO in Spanish.