Laura K. Cooper

Visiting Norwegian King dedicates Bergen Place Park mural

Bergen Place Park filled with people last Friday afternoon for the second part of King Harald V's visit to Ballard. The King was there for the rededication of the Bergen Place Park mural, which was recently refurbished.

After a visit to Pacific Fishermen Shipyard, the King met the crowd at the mural. Mayor Ed Murray greeted the King for the dedication, along with other Seattleites still in good spirits after the Syttende Mai festival, which took place days before the King's visit.

The Ballard Centennial Bell tolled for his arrival and departure, with many in the audience able to recall the King's visit of 1995. King Harald dedicated the mural 20 years ago, and Harald’s father, King Olav V, dedicated the park in 1975.

While in Washington King Harald will also receive an Honorary Doctorate from Tacoma’s Pacific Lutheran University during its 125th anniversary commencement ceremony.

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Murray tours Ballard, talks affordability with locals

Mayor Ed Murray toured Ballard last Saturday April 25 and spoke with business owners and residents about issues in the community. Murray focused extra attention on housing affordability and public transportation in Ballard.

Residents and community leaders gathered at the Starbucks on NW Market Street and 20th Avenue NW to start the tour. Secret Gardens Bookstore, Hot Cakes and Ballard Health Club were just a few businesses Murray visited.

“So how’s business?” Murray asked owners.

Murray also asked owners what he could do to improve commerce in the community. Parking and rent affordability was a major issue mentioned by owners.

“It’s very important that the mayor is here today in Ballard to see what’s happening in the community and meet community leaders,” said Mike Stewart, Executive Director of the Ballard Chamber of Commerce.

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Mayor introduces legislation to create new licenses for marijuana businesses

Mayor Ed Murray today unveiled new legislation for the marijuana industry. The proposal addresses the rise of the unregulated medical marijuana dispensaries and creates a path for dispensaries to join the fully licensed and legal marketplace.

“We’re strengthening the recreational marijuana market and creating safer, more consistent access for those who rely on medicinal products,” said Murray. “Medical marijuana patients live with debilitating and frequently life threatening conditions, that’s why it’s so important to bring medical dispensaries into the fold by July 2016. This will expand the legal market and ensure that products are sold with the best medical and state retail standards.”

Since the passage of Initiative 502 in 2012, Seattle has seen the number of unregulated medical marijuana establishments double to nearly 100.

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