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Carnation group ready to battle state agency

CARNATION - From the front porch of the Atkins' residence off 344th Avenue Northeast outside Carnation, Gary Atkins can see nothing except his garage and trees.

"There is nothing from here to the Pass," Gary said, pointing north to the woods. "That's why we moved out here."

That's also why Gary and his wife have joined a group of Carnation residents to fight the placement of a halfway house for sexual offenders just down the street from their home.

On Dec. 4, the states Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) announced that a site just outside of Carnation was one of three the agency had picked as options for the construction of a sex-offender facility. Such facilities are used to transition sexual offenders, who have already served their sentence, back into the community.

Gary's wife, Patty, heard news of the announcement on television and was on the DSHS Web site within seconds to find out more about the site.

When she confirmed that the site was just down the street from her house, she could hardly believe it.

"I was in shock," Patty said.

Patty formed the Sno-Valley Community Action Team (Sno-CAT) within days. Through a flurry of phone calls and fliers, she had contacted hundreds of people from Redmond to Snoqualmie, most of whom were more than willing to lend their time and resources to fighting the issue.

For the complete story, pick up a copy of this week's Valley Record

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