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Today’s highlights

Dana Eberly, of Spokane Valley, heats a glass tube with a special torch setup before bending it. She said plastic signs took over in the 1970s, but neon came back in the 1980s. Now LED lights are popular. SR photo/Jesse Tinsley

It's Thursday, it's cool and it might rain later. And to top if all off, we have some highlights from today's Valley Voice. Reporter Lisa Leinberger has an interesting story on Spokane Valley resident Dana Eberly, who makes and repairs neon signs. It's an exacting process to create the glass tubes.

The fate of the Painted Hills Golf Course has been determined after its owners declared bankruptcy last year: it will be sold in a trustee's sale on the steps of the Spokane County Courthouse next month. A group of residents have asked the city of Spokane Valley to buy the course so it won't be developed, but that doesn't look likely at this point.

The city is looking at the feasibility - and price tag - of adding sewer to a large swath of vacant industrial land near the eastern edge of the city. Early research shows an estimated cost of $10.2 million, but the project can be split in three phases and done over time.

Diamond wedding ring recovered 18 months after it was accidentally flushed

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A Boise woman says she believes in miracles after sewer workers found the $6,000 diamond wedding ring she accidentally flushed down the toilet 18 months ago. Mechelle Rieger claimed the seven-diamond ring Thursday morning at City Hall in Kuna, bringing with her a photo and the March 2001 appraisal from the jeweler that made it. Rieger thanked city workers Travis Fleming and Carey Knight, who spotted the ring along with loose coins in a filtration basket while doing routine maintenance last week. Rieger said she freaked out and “just started screaming” when the ring accidentally fell in the toilet. She says there was more screaming involved when she got a voice message from a friend relaying the news about a ring being found in the sewer in her old neighborhood.

Traffic issues

There are a few small projects happening on Spokane Valley streets this week that will create occasional traffic problems. The southbound curb lane on Argonne Road will be closed just north of Knox Avenue on Wednesday, so expect congestion as people try to merge into one lane. Sidewalk repair work will be happening on Broadway between Moore and Flora through Friday. Expect narrowed lanes and some delays.

Then, of course, there are the multiple street closures in Greenacres for sewer installation work. The project to extend Indiana Avenue to the intersection of Mission and Flora is also ongoing.

Oops. Wrong pipe.

Scanner traffic says that a sewer installation crew on Boone Avenue between Greenacres Road and Long Road has accidentally severed a 2-inch natural line gas line. Spokane Valley Fire Department crews are on the scene. Additional intersections in the area may be shut down until the leak is fixed.

1:30 p.m. update: Valley Fire is now sending its technical rescue team to the scene. Workers will need to enter a trench to make repairs and the trench may need to be reinforced to make sure it doesn't collapse while someone is in it. Residents near the gas leak have been evacuated from their homes.

Deanna: Humans Produce Phosphates

Deanna Goodlander: The largest (by far) provider of phosphates in sewer systems is the human body. Every time you flush, you are adding phospates to the system. You will be seeing much more about phosphates in the systems in the future dealing with the TMDL (total maximum daily load) of phospate limitations placed on all cities on the Spokane River by the State of Washington. Total cost estimated at as much as 2 billion dollars to meet those standards, presently unattainable with todays technology. Anybody ready for a 500 per month sewer bill???????

DFO: So, if we all agree to stop pooping & peeing and/or flushing, we can keep our dish soap w/phosphates?

Question: Are environmental agencies demanding too much of communities that dump treated wastewater into waterways?