A caisson entering Arlington National Cemetery across the Potomac River from Washington, DC
Photo from Arlington National Cemetery website,
Courtesy of Andrew V. McMaster, May 2006
This weekend is our Memorial Day holiday when America pauses to honor those that have given their lives in service to their country. The Yelm Community Blog host & Kleiner’s Korner editor/publisher appreciates and honors all of those who have served to defend, protect, and preserve our country from outside invaders. Memorial Day was first called Decoration Day “to honor Union soldiers who died during the American Civil War. After World War I, it expanded to include those who died in any war or military action,” quoting Wikipedia.
On this Memorial Day, this writer’s thoughts and prayers are with the families that have had to endure monumental suffering at the hands of American Presidents & Congress by losing sons and daughters in deceptive wars that had little or nothing to do with defending this country and where THEY get swept aside in the “fog of war." These are families like Pat Tillman’s mother, who explained her story for CBS News 60 Minutes May 4, 2008. Mr. Tillman was an NFL football great who was inspired to enlist to serve his country after 9/11 and was killed by friendly fire in Afghanistan, with the Pentagon covering-up the truth and using Tillman’s name to fabricate more deceptions.
Locally, I would like to acknowledge the work and commitment of people like Tad Stillwell. Tad owns Yelm's Farmers Insurance Agency and has returned to Yelm-life after serving our country in Iraq for almost a year. I am so glad to see Tad "back-in-the-saddle" in his office!
The Nisqually Valley has endured quite a sacrifice with fallen soldiers that include:
Photo of Rainier's fallen son, Justin Norton
This writer wishes to remind the Community of the Justin Norton Scholarship Fund
honoring Rainier, Washington's fallen soldier in Iraq. About Sgt. Norton
And this recent, distressing story from The Olympian:
"Top enlisted soldier's cause of death a mystery"
"Searchers discovered the body of Sgt. Maj. Michael S. Kurtz, 52, of Yelm, near the edge of the Deschutes River on Friday night [May 14], more than a day after his wife reported him missing.
Investigators for the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office, which led the search-and-rescue operation, said foul play is not suspected."
And, "VJ Day, Honolulu Hawaii, August 14, 1945"
Amazing video footage: CLICK HERE
See this fabulous slide show "Women in Uniform" from 1778 - today.
From TODAY on NBC.
Michael Knight has been a journalist/documentary maker and Editor since 1960. He moved from New Zealand to Yelm in 1990 and recently directed the documentary "Contact Has Begun". Now he is Publisher and Editor of "New Earth News."
Knight told the Yelm Community Blog that New Earth News and its regular feature "2020 Vision", while looking in depth at current earth changes, "has a primary focus on creating something far better, beyond today's chaos."
"'2020 Vision' means that we see very clearly what's currently going on - but we also have a vision of the future; by the year 2020, if not before we live in a world in which we finally respect each other, teach our incoming children the great knowledge of why they are here, and are actually an evolving species worthy of Contact with more advanced civilizations."
"It's a vision we have to start creating today if we want to live it tomorrow," Knight said.
“2012: Time for Change” presents an optimistic alternative to apocalyptic doom and gloom.
Directed by Emmy Award nominee João Amorim, the film follows journalist Daniel Pinchbeck, author of the bestselling 2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl, on a quest for a new paradigm that integrates the archaic wisdom of tribal cultures with the scientific method. As conscious agents of evolution, we can redesign post-industrial society on ecological principles to make a world that works for all. Rather than breakdown and barbarism, 2012 heralds the birth of a regenerative planetary culture where collaboration replaces competition, where exploration of psyche and spirit becomes the new cutting edge, replacing the sterile materialism that has pushed our world to the brink.
“2012: Time for Change”
"From Conscious Evolution to Practical Solutions" CLICK HERE for the film's website.
"Betsy Chasse is listed in Variety's top 50 Independent Producers of 2004 & has helped produce over 30 feature films, and runs her own production and distribution company, Intention Media, which is currently releasing 4 films either in theaters or on dvd.
Chasse was the co-creator and is credited with co-writing, co-directing and producing, What The Bleep Do We Know?! "BLEEP" is the 4th highest grossing documentary in U.S history and still enjoys a strong presence on DVD," quoting Intention Media's site.
I received the letter below from 2nd Legislative District Rep. Tom Campbell in response to a published article by Pierce County Dispatch reporter Bruce Smith. I was dismayed at some of the things that have been said about Rep. Campbell, whom I have found to be a committed listener on any topic, even on those we may disagree. What can be said about Tom Campbell is that his allegiance has always been first to his constituents, ALL constituents & not to area elected officials & corporate maneuverings.
Tom has been an independent voice in representing this district, and says what he believes and feels is right. I consider this man a state legislator of integrity, one who will make the tough call to vote against his party on issues in the best interest of the public he was elected to serve.
As Smith points out, there "is the unprecedented number of endorsements that Wilcox (Campbell's opponent) has received from Republican Party leaders and office holders." ...
"It's poor etiquette," said Matt Hamilton. "Usually, endorsements are given after the primary."
What is interesting is that the Republican leadership seems to be dumping their incumbent candidate.
Tom votes for the people, not the party.
Is the Republican Party dumping their incumbent before the Primary because Campbell doesn't vote party line, rather what is best for his district's hard working families & individuals?
As one writer to the Dispatch wrote, "To criticize him for standing up for all of us on issues he believes to be just is a cowardly way to win votes. Hopefully the people will realize that choosing a candidate who simply conforms to party lines is not a decision that would benefit us all the most."
While the Wilcox family & their work here throughout several generations are recognized for excellence, voters would be wise to observe the names, city officials and corporate entities already lining-up behind Campbell's opponent Wilcox, indicative of some very cozy relationship building already underway, that may not be in the public's best interest.
As Tom said, "This is a nasty campaign... already."
Here is Representative Campbell's letter, in his own words:
Please look at the linked article in the Dispatch and the comments attached to it. I am particularly displeased with the comment by Phil Dyer who said I broke my word on healthcare, which is a lie. I have fought hard to increase access and control costs in every way possible, no change in that ever. I also made law strong provisions to punish and remove incompetent and dangerous health care practitioners. I created a Hospital Acquired Infection Reporting System with the CDC that tracks and publicly reports infection in our States hospitals. It should be noted that Mr. Dyer supported LeMay in his dump efforts when I passed the Bill banning dumps over aquifers like ours in 1999!
I voted against the 960 bust and did not support any new taxes that passed this year. The referenced “Furlough Bill” SB 6503 was not supported by any Republican I know in the HOUSE, it was a bad bill! I suggested that if we want to cut government payroll that we the elected should lead by example. I proposed that all of us, from the Governor, legislature, judges and ALL states employees, including the Washington Management Service take a 3% pay cut. The bill only affects about 24% of the State Employees, mainly the line workers not the managers and directors. It hit that 24% at 5-15% of their pay. It was unfair and just a simple political ploy. I am more than willing to share the pain, EQUALLY.
I have been very effective in protecting my district and returning tax dollars to my district not shipping them to Seattle. I lead the way in last years transportation budget securing 1.4Billion dollars in transportation projects in Pierce County. I obtained 10.5 M dollars to begin the Bethel Skills Center, giving kids a trade and a reason to not drop out and secure family wage jobs. I passed laws to reduce the massive numbers of meth labs in our community, a full 80% drop in labs in the year following the passage of the first bill in 2005 and now its follow on in 2010, the electronic pseudo ephedrine tracking bill. I have successfully helped pass the Toxic Toys bill eliminating toys made with dangerous chemicals and heavy metals, mostly from China. I have supported and secured funds to build the “Bridge for Kids” in Orting. Someday that Lahar will come, I am determined to prepare so people will not die from our inaction. I assisted the town of Orting in building their new Public Safety building for their Police and Fire Officers. I have supported funds for Eatonville’s water system and road projects. I have worked to build the Yelm Loop Project, now it has begun in the southern portion. I will stick with it until it is complete. I have supported the restoration of the Historical School Building in Rainier, providing a community center for the town with a new HVAC system, roof and other improvements. I have supported the Soldiers Home for our Veterans in every year that I have been in office, most recently the project to restore the Garfield Barracks. I have been mentioned many times in the Tacoma News Tribune as “one of Pierce Counties most effective legislators”. I never shy away from a fight when I believe it is necessary to protect and advance the interests of my neighbors. I am definitely not a “go along Get along” type. I am forthright, direct and honest to a flaw. Most politicians hate that and as you see will stab me in the back at any turn. I am proud of my work for the people who have trusted me in each election and I have never let them down.
This is a nasty campaign that is already falsely maligning me. I need my friends to speak out on my behalf.
We will be having a debate on Wed. June 2nd, 7PM at the Dryer Friendship hall in Parkland. Please come if you can.
"Cozy Valley Farm is located on 76 acres in the hills of Tenino, WA. We are a licensed Grade A Raw Milk Dairy. At our micro dairy, we milk several different breeds of milk cows that we find are more suitable to thriving on grass pastures. Jersey's, Milking Shorthorns, Ayrshire's & Brown Swiss cows graze lush pastures all year long .
Whole Raw Milk that is not homogenized or pasteurized has many heath benefits that are now being recognized. Cream waits to be skimmed from the top, children love this milk, and grandparents remember the fresh tasting milk from their childhood. Our cows are fed mainly pasture & grass hay grown on our own fields. We follow all natural practices with our animals and do not feed antibiotics or hormones...
Milk is available at the farm in Tenino, and Olympia Food Co-ops, Yelm Food Co-op, Mega Foods and Smart Nutrition in Tumwater, and Dave's Thriftway in Tenino. Shop N Kart, Fullers, Good Health in Chehalis. And IGA in Rochester...
Our Milk makes wonderful cheese. Currently, we are making cheddar's, parmesan, yoghurt cheese and ricotta.
Cozy Valley Farms is a family-owned small farming enterprise located in Tenino, Washington. The farm produces a variety of agricultural products including, grade A raw cows milk, USDA grass fed meats (angus steer, katahdin lamb). The family is dedicated to the humane treatment of animals and strive to be responsible stewards of the land.
Frankly, we love animals. We love our land. Our food comes from happy animals, and we think that this makes the difference. We care.
Schedule and Location:
At the farm, self serve, reasonable hours of the day
This writer & his wife recently visited Cozy Valley farms & had a tour with owner Laurie Barta.
We found a truly unique local business that serves quality dairy products.
The milk & cheeses are absolutely superb.
Take a weekend outing and visit Laurie and the gang at Cozy valley!
Be sure to get your fresh, raw milk at the Yelm Food Co-op.
TELL COZY VALLEY FARMS YOU READ ABOUT THEM ON TH YELM, COMMUNITY BLOG!
This season, I invite you to an exclusive trunk show featuring Fall Collections from...
Lourdes Chavez, Trixi Schober, Raffinalla and Kevan Hall
Thursday, May 27th 10 - 6
Friday, May 28th 10 - 6
Saturday, May 29th 10 - 4
This Trunk Show is a special event to show off styles from the upcoming Fall season, featuring new arrivals in coats, suits, sweaters, dresses, cashmere, scarves and more.
Giorda E offers a private setting for you to consult with Giorda and the designers, view their entire lines, and order clothes made to your measurements that you know will fit. This is an opportunity to lookout for that next special item to add to your wardrobe.
"Thurston unemployment rate falls to 7.5%"
"Thurston County job creation helped to lower the county's unemployment rate to 7.5 percent in April from 8.7 percent in March, yet another sign that the South Sound economy continues to improve, according to unemployment data released today by the state Employment Security Department," quoting The Olympian.
May 26, 2010 1:00 p.m.
Department of Ecology
300 Desmond Drive - Lacey
The Department of Ecology (Ecology) proposes to adopt rules for reclaimed water use by December 2010.
The goal is to develop a Reclaimed Water Program encouraging the use of reclaimed water; assure the
health and safety of Washington citizens; protect the environment; and allow us to use our precious water resources wisely.
The Department of Health will participate with Ecology at the workshops.
For additional information, contact Ecology’s Tim Gaffney at email@example.com.
At the May 11th Yelm City Council meeting, Mayor Pro-tem Isom reported he attended a presentation of the LOTT Alliance and he stated:
"The Department of Ecology is messing with the regulations for reclaimed water & there are some great concerns about what the outcome is going to be."
The Department of Ecology released the Draft of Reclaimed Water Rules on May 12, 2010. CLICK HERE to access.
Yelm's Achilles Heel seems to be the roles of Health vs. Ecology regarding Yelm's water issues that this error would have happened.
Since my letter to Bonnie Waybright of the office of drinking water was quoted in their story, they could see that Ms. Waybright's office was with the Dept. of Heath (DOH), NOT DOE (Ecology).
And, the 47 additional hook-ups are for connections to the city's water system approved by DOH, not "well hook-ups".
To date, neither Health or Ecology have approved the City of Yelm's draft Water System Plan AND Yelm has been operating without an approved Water System Plan since Sept, 2008.
The timeline for all of this correspondence was covered on the Yelm Community Blog on May 8th: CLICK HERE for that story. DOH contacts were also linked here on May 8th.
The NVN referenced Pam Paiz's letter to DOH, which was published here on May 10th. DOH limiting connections to the city's water system was enacted exactly because, as the NVN story quoted Ms. Waybright saying to Ms. Paiz,
"our concern is to protect the health of the residents of Yelm and other communities by ensuring they have safe & reliable drinking water."
Regarding this comment in the NVN story:
"He [Klein] also criticized recent comments made by city officials to the Nisqually Valley News and another regional daily newspaper.
The officials failed to mention the city over-pumped its alloted water in previous years, he said."
Ed. NOTE: DOE allocates Yelm's annual allocation of water to be pumped.
YES, I HAVE CRITICIZED CITY OFFICIALS' ACTIONS & COMMENTS!
However, to put my comments these last 6 years in context,
I quote NBC's Lisa Myer's report of May 21st titled: "Deepwater Horizon rig: What went wrong?
Independent investigator says accident was preventable; safety compromised"
where she interviewed independent researcher Dr. Robert Bea investigating the Deepwater Horizon oil rig accident who said,
"...all the companies involved in the Deepwater Horizon accident probably bear some responsibility, but that most of the blame rests with BP and the federal government, because they failed to properly oversee the project.
'These are not bad people,' Bea says emphatically. 'We're just doing dumb things.'
Lisa Myers: 'This report is damning."
I SAY THE EXACT SAME THING ABOUT ACTIONS & COMMENTS FROM YELM'S CITY HALL ON THE WATER ISSUES HERE:
'These are not bad people,'
'We're just doing dumb things.'
However, DOE & DOH are finally providing oversight to Yelm's water maximum annual allocation & connections respectively, in that a set number for each (pumped acre feet/year & maximum allowable connections to the city's water system) has been established that the city must adhere.
THAT is a story for the NVN's front-page in and of itself.
UPDATE: Monday, May 24th, 6pm
To the NVN's credit, they corrected their website edition -
DOH responds to inquiries into 47 water hookups
By Megan Hansen
Nisqually Valley News
Published: Monday, May 24, 2010 2:02 PM PDT Department of Health received several letters after granting the City of Yelm 47 additional connections to its water system.
Who is uncouth?
As one astute Blog reader pointed out, for a newspaper that touts their quality to make such an error on their front-page was glaring.
Yet, to not quote the source of their story shows lack of professional journalistic standards. The NVN knows where they got this story & from where they quoted the material, whether or not they asked DOH for the letters they read on the Yelm Community Blog on May 10th.
"Livvy is 4 years old and her IQ is in the 99.9th percentile of the general population who took the IQ test.
At age 3, she tested and easily qualified for Mensa, the high IQ society that offers programs, support and education for extremely gifted children and adults around the world whose IQs are in the top 2 percent.
At first, Coverdale [her mother, Virginia Coverdale] thought, 'What’s the point?' and didn’t sign her daughter up. She wondered what good Mensa would do.
But now Livvy is accepted as a member and is a penpal with another 4-year-old in London.
Coverdale said she always knew Livvy was precocious.
Livvy taught herself to read at age 2.
When she was 3, she began piano lessons and already knows how to read music and play three-chord songs. For Mother’s Day, Livvy took Coverdale’s phone and recorded an improvised piece that sounds well beyond her years.
It wasn’t until Livvy was in school and Coverdale had other children to compare her to that she realized the extent of her daughter’s intelligence...
Academically, Livvy is at least at the third-grade level. Socially, she’s still 4 and physically, she’s a little small for her age.
After being told the best thing to do would be to withdraw Livvy from school and let her do what she loves, Coverdale let Livvy garden and spend time with her grandmother...
In March, however, Coverdale enrolled Livvy in kindergarten at Children’s School of Excellence in Rainier, hoping they could accommodate her needs, both social and academic...
Livvy already knew reading and math when she enrolled at CSE. Multiplication — even the concept of squaring numbers — comes easy to her...
Coverdale credits the school and it’s teaching concepts for helping Livvy to blossom socially and be comfortable in a school environment.
'She’s enjoying school for the first time,' Coverdale said. 'I couldn’t drag her out of bed before.'
One of Livvy’s favorite activities is chess...
Now, she is taught by national chess master Loal Davis...
In addition to chess and piano, Livvy bakes, gardens and plays golf...
Coverdale knows her daughter’s level of intelligence is unique. The disparity between being in the 98th percentile to qualify for Mensa and the 99.9th percentile is “almost the difference between being below average and gifted.”
But Coverdale said it isn’t about bragging, and parents with twice-exceptional kids know they aren’t pushing their kids to be academically-inclined; the kids are the ones pushing because they love to learn.
'Between us, we’re not bragging,' Coverdale said. 'We’re shocked and amazed.'
'I believe we are all geniuses and people are tapping into that in different ways.'
'The kids here (at CSE) are some of the most precocious kids,' she added. 'Even the ones who aren’t the most academic are wise. They ask questions, and it’s not just kid questions.'
'They want to know how the universe works,'” quoting the NVN.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT RAINIER'S CHILDREN'S SCHOOL OF EXCELLENCE, CLICK HERE.
Penning some of the stage’s biggest hits, Herman was nominated for five Tony Awards throughout his career and won two, also earning the Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in Theater.
Incorporating hit song after hit song, Showtune aims to please audiences young and old alike with witty lyrics set to iconic tunes from shows like Hello, Dolly!, Mame, La Cage aux Folles and more.
The show runs from May 27-30 and June 3-6 at the Kenneth J. Minnaert Center for the Arts. The May 30 and June 6 performances begin at 2 p.m. All other performances begin at 8 p.m.
Tickets are $15 for the general public and $10 for students, staff and faculty. Performances on May 27 and June 3 are “pay what you can” nights. Tickets are available online at OlyTix.org or by calling (360) 753-8586. For more information about the performances, go online at www.spscc.ctc.edu/entertainment or call (360) 596-5411.
Yelm-area resident Dawn Young shared this with the Yelm Community Blog:
"I am actually performing in this production as one one of the 6 leads. I sing more solos than any other cast member and it has been a great challenge. The last two years I have been teaching student in the Yelm school district and now I can demonstrate my wisdom in musical theater arts. Claudia Simpson-Jones and Don Welch called Jon Halverson and myself in to be the seasoned performers among young students. I have assisted the student costumer and the choreographer as well.
It is always an honor to help expand the experiences and minds of wonderful people around me. The students have big dreams and I am there to help love their dreams into Life."
Commissioner Sandra Romero Hosts Monthly Coffees with Area Residents
Please join Thurston County Commissioner Sandra Romero, as she hosts her monthly informal coffee hours in Rainier & Yelm on Monday, May 24th.
This month’s coffee will focus on the Thurston County Economic Development Council.
Its mission is to create a vital and sustainable economy that supports the livelihood and values of its residents. Our special guest will be Executive Director, Michael Cade.
Commissioner Romero stated, “For the last 28 years, the Economic Development Council has brought together community leaders to create a vital economy that provides supports and services for local businesses, including a small business resource center, a sustainability business initiative, and energy efficiency programs in partnership with the Thurston County Climate Action Team.”
These coffees give you the opportunity to talk about issues, ask questions about the county, and share ideas. Commissioner Romero provides to participant’s coffee that she pays for herself. She is the
representative of District 2, which includes Yelm, Lacey, and Rainier.
What: Citizen meeting with second district County Commissioner Sandra Romero
When: Monday, May 24, 2010
Where: Rainier: 9:30am – 10:30am - Rainier City Hall – 102
Rochester St. W.
Yelm: 11:00am – Noon – Blue Bottle Espresso – 309
East Yelm Avenue
2000 Lakeridge Dr. SW
Olympia, WA 98502
THE BLUE BOTTLE CAFE & ESPRESSO WILL ALSO BE HONORING THE LIFE OF SIR ROBERT JONES ON MONDAY, MAY 24TH.
A MESSAGE TO CLEARWOOD COMMUNITY MEMBERS FROM: Valerie Cawley (former board director)
"This message is addressed to Clearwood Community members encouraging them to read the small print before they vote to approve the Amendment to the Covenants.
This is a complicated issue and a little background might help to explain it. The Covenants are updated every 20 years and September 2010 is the critical date for recording any new amendments, otherwise they will remain unchanged for a further 20 years,
The board, unable to complete the changes in the time allowed, decided to make only one change this year, to extend the duration of the current Covenants for a year or two, not specified, to allow time for amendments to be prepared.
In the Minutes of the March Board Meeting and again in the May Spring Newsletter it was clearly stated by the President of the Board that “the lawyer is recommending that we only amend the duration of our Covenants this year” and when a Directed Proxy Postcard/ballot arrived in the mail on May 5, 2010 everyone expected to vote on that small amendment.
We discovered that this was not the case. In the small print on the back of the letter accompanying the proxy ballot we found cause for concern in proposed new language
which reads "The Board shall review any proposal that the Covenants be amended and determine whether to submit a proposed amendment to the Covenants to Owners for approval”
This raises a number of questions. Since when did the board have the power to “determine whether” to seek member approval? The Bylaws contain strict language defining what the board can and cannot do, and historically all voting issues have been turned over to the membership for approval. Is the board creating new language in the Covenants allowing it to change the Bylaws to take away voting rights of the members?
In addition, by using a Directed Proxy Postcard, the board overcomes any hurdles imposed by the Bylaws, with regard to “members in good standing” and is denying the dissenting voice at the same time. Clearwood resolutions allow for “pros” and “cons” but on this important issue there is no opportunity for members to voice their concern. Proxy votes must be received by June 23, 2010 and the only meeting to discuss the ballot is on June 26, 2010.
I urge Clearwood owner/members to read the material very carefully before voting to approve the Covenant Amendment ballot, There is too much at stake to treat this lightly.
Written comments may be submitted in lieu of testimony. Please submit written comments by 4 p.m. on June 1. Your comments may be mailed to the address below, or e-mailed to the staff contact listed below.
Mailing & Contact Information:
Thurston County Planning Department
2000 Lakeridge Drive S.W.
Olympia, WA 98502
Staff contact: Jeremy Davis, Associate Planner, 754-3355 ext.
7010 or e-mail
Sir Robert Dean Jones, Jr. of Rainier passed away at his home on Thursday evening, May 13 after a brief illness. Sir Robert gave his heart & soul to this community over two decades including, yet not limited to:
- establishing his renowned I BEAT DYSLEXIA business in Yelm's central core for many years.
- established Sir Robert's Foundation in Rainier, "whose purpose is to fund and promote education and research in the areas of Dyslexia and other Learning Disabilities."
- opened NEW DYNAMIC TRANSPORT with daughter Cozette Fyrst in Yelm's central business core in April, 2008, whose mission was to "offer a revolutionary, cost effective, zero emissions, convenient and fun way of getting around," with a unique sturdy, folding bike.
- opened Ion Ways water filtration systems with daughter Cozette Fyrst in Yelm's central business core in February, 2010.
Sir Robert was well-known for his love of children and nowhere was this exhibited locally more than with his annual contributions to Rainier's Children's School of Excellence Auctions, where he made news every year including "the $40,000 paid by Sir Robert Jones for a pair of Ramtha's boots, donated by channeler JZ Knight" in 2007.
He also possessed a trademark belly-laugh known by all that was infectious.
Sir Robert was born December 29, 1947 & grew up in Kansas City, Kansas, one of 12 siblings. He served in the U. S. Army being assigned to an infantry unit on the frontlines in Vietnam. He found his Master Teacher, Ramtha and moved to Yelm, along with most of his family in the early 1990's.
He was appointed by Ramtha as a Red Guard, a position in which he served for 2 almost decades & most recently as a Teacher. Sir Robert always was enthusiastic about learning the power of the mind and since attending RSE, he healed his heart, thyroid & kidneys through techniques learned at RSE and had the before/after medical records to prove it. Sir Robert taught the power of the mind and how that could be applied to healing the body.
"Sir Robert's Funeral - A Celebration" will be held on the Yelm campus of Ramtha's School of Enlightenment on Monday, May 24th at 10am in the Great Hall he loved so much.
Sir Robert touched the lives of many around the Nisqually Valley, so in a unique opportunity for our community to come together to honor this beloved man's life, the RSE campus will be open to the public. CLICK HERE for map to entrance of RSE's campus.
Sir Robert's greatest legacy is that of HIS children:
Cozette Fyrst and her husband Kai,
Robert D. Jones, IV and his wife Laurie McClelland
& Sir Robert's grand-daughter Helen,
and son Exa-Siltana (age 11) all of the Yelm area
plus 2 daughters Maisha Jones & Kristynna Jones that live out of the area.
He is also survived by current partner Ruth Sparrow,
and former wives Kim Fyrst-Jones and Michelle Jones, owner of Yelm's Blue Bottle Cafe, all of Yelm.
In lieu of flowers, the family is accepting donations to The Masters' Fund in Sir Robert's name.
In closing, this poem Sir Robert wrote sums up the essence of this humble Giant!
I CAN ACHIEVE ALL THINGS
By Sir Robert D. Jones, Jr.
I wake up in the morning and hear the birds singing,
the wind whistling, and I feel the warmth of the sun.
The trees are stretching to the heavens,
the flowers are bursting with color
and the world is awakening to another day of life.
How grand it is to be a part of it all!
How many days have you awakened,
not noticing these things?
I was not fully awakened to life’s wonder
until I learned to read and write.
Now I am smelling the flowers and enjoying their fragrance
and hearing the birds fill the world with their songs.
I see the trees with their towering strength.
I breathe the wind and have found new life in all things.
How grand it is to be able to read and write!
And I give thanks to the Lord God of my being
for awakening me to the fact that I can do all things.
Yelm resident Eran Ben-Sira addressed the Yelm City Council during the Public Comment period last Tuesday, May 11th and quoted Rep. Jim McCune's flier sent to all Legislative District 2 constituents.
He said he went to the Yelm Town Hall April 30th and asked Rep, McCune about the $400,000 allocated by the state for 8 flush toilets at Yelm's Longmire Park amidst a state budget crisis.
McCune was quoted in his newsletter as follows,
"I agree with the sentiments of those who want government to live within its means and be more accountable. This is what I will continue to advocate for in the Legislature.
Projects for the 2nd District Longmire Community Park. This park offers walking trails, a new playground set and ball fields. It is a centerpiece for our Yelm community and brings families together for activities."
Mr. Ben-Sira said he told Rep. McCune he found nothing responsible about allocating $400,000 for 8 flush toilets & a small concession stand at Yelm's Longmire Park when this state needs to reign-in excessive expenditures. McCune told Ben-Sira the City of Yelm originated the request for the toilet monies & he worked to fulfill that expenditure.
So, Ben-Sira asked Yelm's City Council why they went to our State Representatives requesting $400,000 for flush toilets, a "luxury" in economic times such as this. Sitting in for Mayor Harding, Mayor Pro-tem Isom stated those funds were allocated by the state & could only be used for parks, and if Yelm did not accept the monies, some other jurisdiction would do so instead.
[Ed. Note: Mr. Isom was not entirely correct, as stated by Rep. McCune in his Newsletter:
"The capital budget provides funding for the construction and repair of public buildings and other long-term investments, such as land acquisitions and transfers. It is separate from the operating budget...
Would a Yelm Public Library Building be a better use of funds? ]
Mr. Ben-Sira then asked about how funding cost overruns for toilet construction was handled. Council member McGowan answered the city picked-up the tab for what he thought was a $60,000 cost overrun.
Ed Note: "Council approved covering the remaining [net] costs ($45,000) with funding from a Community Block Grant," as reported here previously.
At that point, McGowan grilled Ben-Sira asking if he had ever been to the park and had he ever seen children required to use porta-potties? Did Ben-Sira not think this area deserved to have recreation facilities?
Ben-Sira countered there would be maintenance & upkeep costs for flush toilets and they would have to be shut down in winter to keep the pipes from freezing, all labor intensive.
He said that he had not been to the park.
He also stated there was an unfilled police position and alot of other areas deserving monetary attention over and above installation of flush toilets. Mr. Isom concluded the interaction.
Mr. McGowan's furled brow, the scowl on his face and shaking his head in noticeable disgust as Mr. Ben-Sira sat down was consistent with this Council's demonstrative antagonism & behavior towards public discourse & the public process throughout the past decade.
Ed. Note: Whether Mr. Ben-Sira had been to the park or not is irrelevant.
With the cost of three portable toilets of $472 per month for the Summer of 2009, doing the math and compared to the $400,000 expense of the flush toilets, that's 848 months or 71 years required to pay for the flush toilets at the current, summer invoice portable-toilet rate, not including annual maintenance costs for the flush toilets..
CLICK HERE for the video to the Council session & the exchange from 00:08:00 - 11.25:00.
Before closing the Council session, Mr. Isom reported he attended a presentation of the LOTT Alliance and he reported:
"The Department of Ecology is messing with the regulations for reclaimed water & there are some great concerns about what the outcome is going to be."
The Department of Ecology released the Draft of Reclaimed Water Rules on May 12, 2010. CLICK HERE to access.
303 First St. S.,
across from Yelm City Park
Phone: (360) 458-2699
Did you know Lemuria also sells local honey, True Blue Herbs, Hemi-Sync CDs and pillows, and works by local authors and artists?
We also have healers available for sessions: Medical Intuitive Annemarie Schoone; Psychic Milia; and EFT with Mona Saubidet. Call for an appointment.
And in conjunction with our sale, our neighbor A Novel Bookstore also is having a Spring Sale to celebrate their third anniversary. They have used books on spirituality, healing and metaphysics as well as classical literature, children's, and new and collectibles.
And if you're a burger lover, stop by for a meal at The Famous Reggie Burger Wagon that will be in the parking lot selling mouth-watering burgers and fries.
Worth checking out!
From Lemuria's flier.
TELL LEMURIA YOU HEARD ABOUT THEIR SALE ON THE YELM COMMUNITY BLOG!
"Saturday, May 15th, the City of Yelm had their once-a-year Spring-Garbage-cleanup day for those who live in the city limits and use the garbage service.
The cleanup was held at Yelm City Park from 8 am till 11:30 am.
When I arrives at 8am, the line was already two blocks long;
however, moved very quickly.
The staff greeted each of us in such a pleasant and friendly manner
and next to each dump container, there were two stuff members ready to help;
the whole truck was empty in five minutes.
I left the location elated and grateful.
I felt that the city did a great service for their citizens. THANK YOU CITY OF YELM!"
"Home values in most U.S. markets continued to decline during the first quarter of 2010, as the Zillow Home Value Index fell 3.8 percent year-over-year, and 1 percent quarter-over-quarter, to $183,700.
For the Olympia metro area, home values fell 6.1 percent to $230,300 during March compared to a year ago. In Tacoma, values fell 5.7 percent to $190,300 compared to March 2009.
Additionally, negative equity across the country remained high, with 23.3 percent of single-family homes with mortgages underwater, up from 21.4 percent during the fourth quarter of 2009. Foreclosures reached a new peak during March, with more than one of every 1,000 (0.11 percent) U.S. homes going into foreclosure during the month.
Foreclosure re-sales across the country remained high during March, making up more than one-fifth (22.2 percent) of all U.S. home sales. Additionally, one-third (32.4 percent) of home sales nationwide sold for less than what the seller originally paid.
Ed. Note: Less home values mean less property tax revenue for the city & county.
How will this affect the City of Yelm's budget in 2012?
Will they plan well-enough for a continued downturn in home values?
Did they plan their revenue vs. expenses well-enough in 2011?
Their legal bills keep mounting amidst diminishing revenue from home values (property taxes), home sales & sales taxes (Yelm's 4th quarter, 2009 retail sales decline was largest in county) .
Look for the city to have more cuts (smaller library, etc.) and attempt to find more ways to generate revenue (taxes?) and include "spin" that all will be for the public's betterment .
"The Yelm History Project is an attempt to relate the story of Yelm in a variety of ways. It is, actually, many stories. It is a story about the prairie, the surrounding forests, and the Nisqually River; all in the morning shadow of Ta Co Bet; Mt. Rainer. It is also the saga of the Nisqually people, who inhabited the land, shaped the environment, and spread throughout the region. The Yelm History Project, finally, relates the history of the people who settled the prairie, farmed the soil, and logged the forests."
"Firefighters from the Northwest and other jurisdictions have found a rewarding humanitarian purpose in working in support of Bomberos (firefighters) in Guatemala, Central America.
Guatemalan firefighters are no different than firefighters in the United States. They work tirelessly to help their public through medical and fire emergencies. Most of them are volunteers. They often do not have the proper equipment to meet the emergencies demands nor training in firefighting and EMS.
BRAVE Foundation was established with a mission of improving the fire and life saving efforts in developing countries. BRAVE Foundation is recruiting others who are interested in volunteering their talents, raise donations and collect surplused emergency apparatus and equipment," quoting the BRAVE Foundation.
I had the pleasure of attending the Bald Hills Fire Department's [Thurston County Fire Protection District 17] monthly meeting on May 4th and stayed for this excellent presentation, learning much about a group of dedicated people of whom I never knew.
A lady in Arkansas has organized a world-wide group of healers, shamans, kahunas, Wiccans, Christians, and meta-physicians to all meditate, sent heart energy, petition mother earth, pray, & whatever their beliefs, instruct them to do on healing this wound in the Gulf of Mexico.
She has also asked that in that energy/petition/prayer that a subset be that the truth will be made known and that mankind will wake up to what we have done to the earth and begin pursuing renewable, non-polluting energy sources.
This is happening at sunset on Thursday, May 13th.
As Dr. Grobelny heads south to open 2 new clinics in the Los Angeles area he is honored to welcome Dr. Dana Matthews and Dr. Greg Hollandswroth to his Yelm practice. You'll still see Dr. Gordie in his kilt from time to time, but Dr. Matthews and Dr. Hollandsworth are well prepared to fill his shoes (probably not his kilt). Both Doctors have studied Applied Kinesiology extensively. "It took a while to find doctors who have studied AK and are also board certified as Applied Kinesiologists" says Dr. Gordie. "I'm excited for everyone to meet them and see their work".
Grobelny Chiropractic will be introducing their new team May 15th
at the Yelm Holistic Wellness Expo
at the Prairie Hotel.
Come by to meet the docs and get a free adjustment.
Dr. Gordie will be doing a demonstration at 2pm. Everyone who comes by will get a coupon towards their first visit with the new doctors.
Also enjoy a free creative visualization and relaxation session on the New Reality Nxtlynk device.
Learn about weight loss and pain management and other programs that can have a lasting impact on your life .
"As a fine artist of 35 years with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Cornish College of the Arts and graduate studies at Central Washington University, “Being an artist myself, framing is a complementary skill I bring to my customers. I am able to give special attention to making each piece something wonderful.”
- a wide price range of moulding selection
- conservation framing techniques and materials to protect
- personal attention to the details of enhancing the artwork to
look its best
- custom matte cutting
- frame repairs
- cleaning and restorations
- discounts for artists, businesses, and military personnel
- production work for artists such as multiple mattes
Yelm citizen Pam Paiz submitted the following letter to the Department of Health for their recent increase to the number connections to Yelm's water system to add more single-family homes.
Bonnie Waybright, PE
Assistant Regional Manager
Washington State Department of Health
Southwest Drinking Water Operations
Dear Ms. Waybright,
I read the response you sent to the Yelm Community Blog on the Yelm water issue.
I am absolutely baffled by the way Dept of Health and the Dept of Ecology are treating the City of Yelm, or I should say how susceptible the two agencies are to Yelm’s lobbying efforts.
Yelm's city government has a documented track record of not protecting the public's interests:
their treatment of citizens, public process, honest and transparent decision-making are sorely lacking. However, I have to admit they are great lobbyists.
Otherwise, how they can convince the WA. Department of Transportation to build a road to nowhere, convince the Dept of Ecology to look the other way when they over pump their water rights allocation, and now convince the Dept of Health to add to the April 23rd moratorium on the number of additional water connections. I am in awe of Yelm’s lobbying!
However, here is the problem that I see with Health’s decision:
it was based on the city’s conservation savings,
past consumption data,
water right limitation,
and physical capacity limitations.
What is the problem?
1. Yelm has no approved water system plan & has been operating without a water system plan since September, 2008;
2. Yelm only recently instituted a conservation plan—is it working? It will take about a year of data to determine;
3. The past consumption data will be usurped by new conservation measures, maybe;
4. Yelm has a water rights limitation surpassed in 2009, with de facto permission from Ecology.
Here is another problem with Health’s decision (and Ecology’s non decisions). What you have done is bought into Yelm’s modus-operandi to not protect the public's interests. Citizens have tried so hard to be part of the process to build a vital, environmentally safe, and active community. Yelm’s mayor & City Council continually block those efforts and your decision (and Ecology’s non-decision) has further alienated community participation. What is the use in public participation if Health and Ecology do not require Yelm to do the right thing. That is the essence of the very relationship between Yelm and it’s citizenry, and thus trust is nonexistent.
In 2005, a concerned citizen asked the city council to create a moratorium on issuing building permits until the city gets a handle on environmental protection, water quality and quantity, traffic, safety, etc. The council’s response was to prohibit the word moratorium from ever being spoken at city council meetings. Seems like they have prohibited you from deciding on using the word moratorium also.
Shame on you and the Dept of Ecology for not doing the right thing.
cc: Keith Philips, Governor’s Office
Ted Sturdevant, Director of Ecology
Mary Selecky, Director of Health
Darin Davis, Shaquanda Noble, Courtney Shackleford & Maurice Williams
My cousin is a high school school teacher in central Washington, DC working to make a difference for inner-city youth who are breaking "out-of-the-box" of many kids "in the system".
I was pleasantly surprised to hear cousin Marilyn Kaufman wanted to bring her Spring Break Field-Trip group to Yelm enroute between Astoria, Oregon & Seattle. She wanted them to see a rural home in Pacific Northwest.
In the almost three hours they were here, they saw our garden, solar system for self-produced power generation, toured our forests & visited our stream. These young folks were so delightful that they left me hungry to get to know them more.
They filed this report for their fellow school & family members back home: CLICK HERE
Meet these extraordinary students:
"Our team consists of Maurice Williams, Shaquanda Noble, Karlton Chapman, Courtney Shackleford, Darin Davis and Ms. Marilyn Kaufman."
And, about their news network:
"FNN, Friendship News Network, is an award-winning student news network produced entirely by students. Of course there’s guidance from teachers and mentors–all with professional experience in the field of journalism. Students learn while producing news and commentaries for television; radio; our website, OurFNN.com or Rated-T Magazine. Located at Friendship Public Charter School in Washington DC, FNN is free and open to any student in any of the Friendship Public Charter Schools."
- Was the city's irrigation conservation program for commercial water users solely to petition the Dept. of Health to increase the number of single-family connections the city could hook into their water system?
- How can the city be serious about conserving water, when water-conservation savings will be used for building permits to connect 47 additional single-family homes?
- Will accepting more building permits and connecting them to the city's water system reduce Yelm's water consumption & get them within Ecology's allocation in 2010, which they exceeded in 2009?
THE CITY'S STORY IN THE NEWSPAPER
"The City of Yelm has lifted the suspension on the processing of building permits.
Because the city created a mandatory irrigation budget, the water system is receiving an additional 47 connections from the state Department of Health.
Yelm officials were waiting to see if their conservation program would earn them additional connections on their water system...
The city has 47 connections above what they it currently allocated this year," quoting the NVN.
- April 8, City Administrator Shelly Badger received a letter from the Dept. of Health stating that on April 23rd, the city's number of water connections will be set "at capacity" based on the hook-ups that day.
- April 13, Mayor Harding tells Yelm Chamber of Commerce members water irrigation users will have a 50% mandatory cut this summer.
- April 13 evening, the Yelm City Council adopts resolution 509 to redeuce commercial irrigation by 50%, which the city says is required to reduce water consumption.
Yelm over-pumped their water allocation in 2009 & is under scrutiny to be within their Ecology allocation.
- April 26, Yelm enacts a moratorium on accepting any further building permits until Health responds to the city's request for a higher number of water connections than the April 23rd figure, based on the water conservation program.
- May 4, Yelm lifts the building permit moratorium after Health grants the city 47 more connections. "Last year the city issued about 75 building permits and have issued 23 so far this year. The 47 connections should get them through the year, Badger said," in the NVN.
HOW WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE A COMMERCIAL WATER USER IN YELM & TOLD YOU HAVE A MANDATORY IRRIGATION REDUCTION SO YOUR WATER CAN BE USED TO ACCEPT MORE BUILDING PERMIT APPLICATIONS FOR NEW HOMES?
DON'T LIKE THAT, EH?
FOR ALL OF YOUR SILENCE, WHICH MEANS YOU CONDONE THE CITY'S ACTIONS, "PASS GO" AND COLLECT ANOTHER 16% MONTHLY WATER RATE INCREASE, NOW SHOWING UP IN MAY WATER BILLS!
"Please share with your family, friends and coworkers that live in south Thurston County. Thanks!
Thurston County is sponsoring its spring hazardous waste collection events for residents to safely dispose of hazardous household products.
The local FREE WasteMobile collection events will be held:
Saturday, May 15
Rainier High School
308 2nd Street West.
The event is from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and is for Thurston County residents only.
Items accepted include oil-based paints and stains, adhesives, thinners, solvents, pesticides, batteries, antifreeze, motor oil and filters, cleaners, pool and hobby chemicals, fluorescent light bulbs and tubes, propane cylinders, and other home generated hazardous materials. Only containers of five gallons or less are accepted.
The WasteMobile does NOT accept latex paint, empty containers, business waste, medical wastes, explosives, ammunition, radioactive materials, smoke detectors, electronics, garbage, yard waste or appliances.
Residents who miss this event can always take hazardous household materials to HazoHouse, located at the Thurston County Waste and Recovery Center, 2418 Hogum Bay Road N.E. near Lacey. Hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Monday.
NOTE: Latex paint is no longer accepted at HazoHouse or the WasteMobile events unless it was manufactured before 1989, since these older paints may contain lead or mercury. Otherwise, latex can be solidified by mixing with kitty litter, sand, mulch or shredded paper and placed in the trash. Remove the lids so your trash hauler knows it is solidified because liquid or soft paint will be left as unacceptable by your trash hauler.
For more information on recycling events and services, call Thurston County Solid Waste at 867-2491 or go to www.ThurstonSolidWaste.org," quoting Terri Thomas, Education & Outreach Specialist III Thurston County Solid Waste.
In response to the Yelm Community Blog's question about Yelm's increased number of water connections, Bonnie Waybright, Assistant Regional Manager of Washington State's Department of Health, Office of Drinking Watersaid,
"We have updated the city’s approved number of connections to 3,235, based on the capacity assessment they submitted to us. This number takes into account the city’s conservation savings, past consumption data, water right limitations, and physical capacity limitations. It shows the city has enough water to serve 47 additional connections, assuming they are all single-family homes. Because connections other than single-family homes can use more or less water than the average home, the city will need to track anticipated water demand for each non-residential connection to ensure they stay within their capacity limit."
OK, approximately 47 more additional single-family home connections allowed. HMMM!
Yelm will have to re-enact a building moratorium before too long, then!
"...the city still is on pace for 75 housing starts this year, Community Development Director Grant Beck said... Although 10 were issued in the January through March period, 12 have been issued this month, Beck said," quoting last Friday's Olympian.
Those 22 new building permits issued between January & April will need to be connected to the city's water system soon, added to many previously issued building permits about ready to connect.
How can Beck say the city is on pace for 75 housing starts this year when he knew on April 8th the city was limited in water connections according to Health's letter?
And now we learn the city is allowed to add only 47 more single-family homes to its water system?
What happens when those approved building permits become housing starts and are not permitted to be connected to the city's water system?
An astute Blog reader commented:
"cut back consumption by 50% so more permits and houses can be built."
HMMM! that IS a very good point. So, mandatory commercial irrigation conservation was NOT about conservation at all, rather was just to allow the city to convince Health to allow more connections, so the city can issue more building permits?
And, the city still over-pumped their Ecology water allocation in 2009.
With more building permits being accepted, Yelm is on-track to over-pump in 2010, too!
There seems to be no intent of the City of Yelm to reduce water consumption to get within their Ecology allocation, if commercial irrigation conservation was merely to appeal to Health to allow more connection that in-turn has the city accepting more building permits.
WOULD YOU INVEST TO BUILD A HOME IN YELM KNOWING THIS?
KNOWLEDGE YOU CAN COUNT ON DAY
SCHEDULE OF PRESENTATIONS
SATURDAY, MAY 8TH at RAINIER HIGH SCHOOL
10 a.m. Homemade Lotions, Creams & Lip Balms: Free Yourself
From the Cosmetics Industry
Presenter: Linda Thompson. Bring small containers to take home
Your own samples.
Electrical Safety in Your Home
Presenter: Karen Murphy-Beers, journeywoman electrician
Common Sense Gardening
Presenter: Thurston Co. Environmental Health Educators
11 a.m. Preparing, Canning & Preserving Foods Wisely
Presenter: Marian Clements, 25+ yrs. Experience. Knows what
Lasts, what doesn’t, and how to tell the difference
Basic Electrical Repair for the Homeowner
Presenter: Karen Murphy-Beers, journeywoman electrician
Making Your Own Green Cleaners
Presenter: Thurston Co. Environmental Health Educators
12 – 1 p.m. --Potluck Luncheon Break—
1 p.m. Rainwater Harvesting & Above and Below Ground Water Storage
Presenters: Linda Powell & Sheri Yeager
Taking Quality Digital Camera Pictures & Videography
Presenters: Luby Missov and Ruth Bennett
Neuro-developmental Movement for 6 to 106: Trance dance in the creative pause with the whole self
Presenter: Marian Lancaster; Note: This is a 2 hour class.
2 p.m. Recycling Before It Goes in the Recycling Bin
Presenter: Linda Nichols
Presenter: Bob Maddox
Writing a Non-Fiction Book: Where to Begin & How an Editor Can Help
Presenter: Sara Steinberg
3 p.m. How to Eat the Food You’ve Stored
Presenter: Clare Berg
Hands on CranioSacral Therapy for You and Your Family
Presenter: Heidi Gould, OT/R
Get Creative: Explore Your Hidden Writing Talent
Presenter: Bettye Johnson
4 p.m. Homemade Egg Powder, Kombuchi Tea & Liquers from What You Grow
Presenter: Xenia Diamond
Sacred Healing Dance: Movement, Meditation and Alignment
Presenter: Star Light
Body Maintenance for Gardeners & Anyone Else Who Feels Like A Pretzel at the End of the Day
Presenter: Jalene Smith, LMP
Throughout the Day:
Hour 4 Hour Time Exchange Info Table: Everyone is welcome at this event. We will be offering “learning Loans” for those who wish to participate and are not yet time bank members.
Block Fest: A hands-on Learning activity for kids and their parents.
Concessions: Provided by the Rainier Boosters Club to support Rainier High School Programs.
To pre-register for any of the above classes or questions:
TELL HOUR 4 HOUR YOU READ ABOUT THEM ON THE YELM COMMUNITY BLOG!
The NVN is reporting today:
"The processing of Yelm building permits is no longer in suspension.
The city received word from the Department of Health about its conservation program and received additional connections to its water system because of it."
I will get more details and present here as well.
The Olympian reported last Friday,
"Yelm, the county’s fourth-largest city, issued fewer single-family building permits than a year ago, but the city still is on pace for 75 housing starts this year, Community Development Director Grant Beck said... Although 10 were issued in the January through March period, 12 have been issued this month, Beck said."
Funny that Beck failed to mention to The Olympian that the City of Yelm over-pumped their Ecology allocation in 2009 by almost almost 14 afy (acre feet per year).
The city's Staff Report says conservation will save 35 acre feet per year, enough to supply 144 homes.
YOU CAN DO THE MATH:
With 75 new housing starts in 2010 times 3.5 afy used on average per home, that equals a new demand for water on the city's water system of 262.50 afy in 2010. Of course, this amount does not include previously approved 2009 building permits that will be connected in 2010.
So, 35 afy is not going to be enough for Yelm to get within its allocation by adding 75 new homes in 2010, even with mandatory irrigation conservation!
Why is the city accepting building permit applications when sufficient water to support new applicants does not currently exist?
"The Blue Bottle in Yelm, needs financial help.
Michele Jones has barely been able to make ends meet and has been reluctant to let people know.
I am presenting an idea for this community and one can consider it an evolution.
The Blue Bottle has been a great meeting place for many of us and a suggestion has come to me regarding getting the Blue Bottle and Michelle out of a quandary, which involves finances.
Michelle does not make enough to have a salary.
Instead, she gives and gives.
~To keep the Blue Bottle open for the the fine customers and out-of-area people, a suggestion has been proposed of a "Friends of the Blue Bottle" Co-op be formed.
A meeting will be held at the Blue Bottle on Thursday, May 6 at 7 p.m.
I urge you to come and find out what this is all about.
~ Michelle's lease is up and the rent is in arrears.
Either we create a workable solution, or there will be no more Blue Bottle.
The rent is $500 per month and we are asking a "Financial Fairy" to step in and donate money to keep the Blue Bottle afloat until a Board of Directors can be selected and the terms worked out.
What we can do:
~ As a community we can create a community co-op in conjunction with Michelle Jones who will continue to operate the cafe.
~ People can become a member and contribute their services along with a monthly membership fee.
These fees will cover the rent, utilities, internet service, telephone, water and other business
expenses. We want to get enough members and be able to pay Michelle a salary.
~ In the meantime, to get this co-op going, we are requesting financial donations.
~ What you will receive: A magical place to come for food, drink and meetings.
DO NOT CALL MICHELLE AND DISCUSS THIS WITH HER.
JUST SHOW UP FOR THE MEETING AND DONATE MONEY FOR THE RENT.
- A surplus would not hurt, either!
What is needed:
~ A Board of Directors
~ A Business Manager to assist Michelle Jones.
~ A Happy Attitude to know you are contributing to an evolutionary idea. Bring your ideas and present them."
Unfortunately, the City of Yelm has not been kind to the Blue Bottle. In the infinite wisdom of the City's Planning Dept., they denied Ms. Jones's request for drive-though coffee service, saying her business lies within the Yelm Historical District & that would harm the central core, especially if she sold the property & drive-through rights to a McDonald's, Burger King, Jack-in-the-Box, Taco Bell or Starbucks, etc.
If her place was located caddy-corner across Yelm Ave. & 4th Street 100 feet away, she could get a drive-through permit, since that would be outside the Historical District. I asked if the city would make an exemption only while Ms. Jones rented the building. Denied - reasons given were traffic in that area & a whole host of 'why nots'.
So, KFC, Starbucks, etc. down the street all got drive-through permits while the local owner's shop did not.
So, if the Blue Bottle closes, Yelm would lose another locally-owned business, their tax revenue and a rare, quaint & charming meeting place that makes Yelm truly unique.
That would be a sad day. But would city officials care?
Most City Hall officials have NEVER been in the Blue Bottle, some having reportedly said they will not patronize the place because is not "neutral territory".
How truly ignorant!
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED HERE SUNDAY, MAY 2, 2010, 3PM
Websters define Moratorium:
"A period of time in which there is a suspension of a specific activity until future events warrant a removal of the suspension or issues regarding the activity have been resolved."
The headline story in this weeks NVN states: "Yelm building permits placed on hold"
"The City of Yelm is temporarily suspending the processing of building permits.
The city is waiting for the Department of Health to issue the city a number of water connections for its water system, said City Administrator Shelly Badger."
Ed. Note: Interesting that the NVN chose NOT to put this headline story on their website. HMMMM!
UPDATE: The NVN finally did post their story on their website Monday, May 3, 2010 3:55 PM PDT. HMMM!
The Yelm Community Blog broke this story on April 26, 2010:
"On April 8, 2010, City Administrator Shelly Badger received a letter from the Dept, of Health stating that on April 23rd, (last Friday) they will set the city's water system "at capacity". That means the Office of Drinking Water (ODW) will designate the current number of connections served as being all that will be allowed. Health stated, "The decision is based on the the fact that this system has exceeded its physical source capacity". CLICK HERE for the Dept. of Health letter to Yelm.
On April 13, 2005 [YES, in 2005] the Yelm City Council heard from two citizens suggesting the city put a moratorium on approving permits, so growth here could be planned in balance with resources (water, roads, groundwater runoff, sewage, etc.). Immediately, Council member Isom put forth a no moratorium resolution. The Council's Minutes of April 13, 2005 state:
"MOTION BY BOB ISOM, SECONDED BY JOE BAKER THAT NO MORATORIAMS (sic) BE IMPOSED AND THAT THE ISSUE NOT BE BROUGHT BEFORE COUNCIL AGAIN. CARRIED."
Listen to Mr. Isom, in his own words from the April 13, 2005 City Council audio record:
Then, on March 24, 2009, I asked the Council to rescind the resolution imposed against moratoriums and that this City Council start to take a look at a growth moratorium, until the city has sufficient water rights to support hooking-up all of the previously approved homes to the city's water supply. I was rebuffed, of course.
Interesting then, that the City of Yelm has imposed its own moratorium on building here because:
- the city over-pumped their 2009 Ecology water allocation.
- the city has no approved Water System Plan.
- because of such the Dept, of Health has capped the connections to the April 23, 2010 number. Unfortunately and as is typical, none of this is being shared with the public, either by the city or the NVN.
Well, city water users will find out the cost of not speaking-up about this, as their water bills arrive this week with another 16% water rate increase, the 2nd such increase in 9 months.
In other recent & related news:
- On April 30: 2010,
the primary lending bank of Yelm's defaulted 5,000-home Thurston Highlands development was seized by the FDIC and their assets sold. Frontier Bank joins the recent Venture Bank failure, both with heavy investments here.
- On April 29, 2010:
the Washington State Department of Revenue reported overall taxable retail sales declined 11.2 percent to $100.5 billion during 2009.
"The retail trade component of all taxable retail sales dropped 7.2 percent to $44.9 billion," quoting the Washington State Dept, of Revenue. Yelm's overall taxable retail sales decline of -11.80% was greater than the state's average drop.
- On April 28, 2010,
"The number of single-family residential building permits issued in Thurston County's three largest cities rose sharply in the first quarter of the year, a sign that the local homebuilding industry is set for a rebound after a slow 2009, according to data compiled by The Olympian.
However, Yelm's building permits issued dropped 56%.
"The year-over-year first-quarter building permit data show:
Olympia: Rose 209 percent to 34 from 11
Lacey: Rose 52 percent to 70 from 46
Tumwater: Rose 687 percent to 63 from 8
Thurston County: Fell 9 percent to 105 from 116
Yelm: Fell 56 percent to 10 from 23
"Yelm, the county’s fourth-largest city, issued fewer single-family building permits than a year ago, but the city still is on pace for 75 housing starts this year, Community Development Director Grant Beck said. He said the first-quarter data were skewed a little because many builders waited until later in the year before picking up their permits. Although 10 were issued in the January through March period, 12 have been issued this month, Beck said," quoting The Olympian.
Ed. Note: Funny that Beck failed to mention to The Olympian that Health issued a letter limiting water connections in the city and Yelm over-pumped their Ecology allocation in 2009. 75 new housing starts times 3.5 acre feet per year (afy) per home = 262.50 afy of new additional demands for water.
The city's Staff Report says conservation will save 35 acre feet per year, enough to supply 144 homes. The city over-pumped almost 14 afy in 2009, so 35 afy is not going to be enough for Yelm to get within its allocation by adding 75 new homes in 2010, even with mandatory irrigation conservation!
- On April 30, 2010:
the NVN finally published a story about Yelm Library's future. NVN readers now know what was covered here a month ago:
"Funding a facility for the Yelm Timberland Library is entirely up to the City of Yelm come 2012.
Michael Crose, interim executive director of Timberland Regional Library System, notified Yelm Mayor Ron Harding of Timberland’s decision on April 7.
'Following several months of discussion, the Timberland Regional Board of Trustees took action … to discontinue providing funding for the rental property where the Yelm Timberland Library currently is located effective Dec. 31, 2011,' Crose said in a letter.
The current lease is for about $140,000 a year for a state-of-the-art 8,962 square-foot facility...
The city can afford roughly $50,000 a year to put toward a library facility, city officials said.
'It will be up to the city to determine what action to take as a result of the board’s decision,' Crose said."
Overall, last week was not a good week for the City of Yelm and they have no one to blame this time for their own self-created troubles!
This quote then, seems pertinent:
"Ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have."
James Baldwin (1924-1987)
American-born writer. Quoted in the Huffington Post
Ed. Note: I asked S.E. Thurston Fire & EMS Chief Rita Hutcheson if she would share her recent column published in the NVN with Yelm Community Blog readers, a different audience than the NVN.
This is an important story that all area citizens should be aware.
Here is Chief Hutcheson's report, in her own words:
Dear Citizens of S.E. Thurston Fire & EMS,
During the most challenging economic times in recent memory, both labor and management of S.E. Thurston Fire & EMS have worked through many issues this past year. These include opening a new staffed station in Rainier, hiring a new firefighter and consolidating resources to form a regional fire authority.
This has come with sacrifice. Our firefighters have not seen any general wage increases in three years and have agreed not to see one until 2011. This has put firefighters for S.E. Thurston Fire & EMS the lowest paid among comparable departments in the region. While the economy has slowed, calls for service have not. Fire crews face different challenges every day. From the medical calls to the car accidents and the structure fires to the technical rescue, crews are highly trained and prepared to serve.
The administration is also faced with challenges. Due to these harsh economic times, revenue was down in 2010 for the first time in thirteen years. In addition, the department has been in the process of replacing aging apparatus. The primary response engine in Rainier has over 106,000 miles logged (usually, this would send an engine into reserve status). Due to maintenance during the year, on duty firefighters have been left – at times – with no back up engine. New and updated laws and regulations will have the department needing to soon replace vital firefighting tools such as self contained breathing apparatus (SCBA’s) and technical rescue equipment. We are hoping to acquire some of this equipment with grants.
Amidst these challenging times there are signs of hope not only for our department but for the community at large. Local construction is back on the rise. Businesses are moving to Yelm once again. Recently, ground breaking ceremonies took place in Yelm for a new medical facility. S.E. Thurston Fire & EMS will soon be known as S.E. Thurston Fire Authority after last February’s vote. This formation will have benefits such as being able to purchase medical insurance for our employees at a discounted rate. Both labor and management are committed to being fiscally responsible with your tax dollars to ensure our community receives the highest quality emergency services possible. As the Yelm and Rainier area grows, so will S.E. Thurston Fire – ready to serve in your time of need.
In Your Service,
The Labor/Management Team
Spring is here and with the beautiful weather comes more children on bicycles. Please make sure they stay safe by knowing the rules of the road and always wearing a bike helmet. Bike helmets are available at the fire station located at 709 Mill Road, Yelm for a donation of $5.00. We also have a program available for those who cannot afford the $5.00 donation. It is important all bike riders wear a helmet.
Pastor Jeff Adams could be a force for good in this community, if only he lived by the example of his column in the NVN this week, where he wrote:
"We should break the cycle of negativity"
"Why do we focus so much on the negatives?...
The following are some Scriptures which may help you break the cycle of negativity & become more positive and encouraging...
- "Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up (Romans 15:2)."
- "Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen (Ephesians 4:29)."
- "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing (1 Thessalonians 5;11)."
- "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things (Philippians 4:8)."
For someone who utters and pens these words to continue to spout his negative views about our local School (RSE) and people he knows nothing about from first hand experience or investigation, these words ring hollow.
I have asked this man for over 5 years to sit down and meet with me so he can share his continued accusations face-to-face and to this day, he has not done so.
My offer still stands, Pastor Adams.
I invite you once again to "take the log out of your eye" and break the cycle of negativity & become more positive and encouraging, to learn about and please his neighbor for his good, to build him up for all of us are brothers (and sisters) living in this community!
Pastor Adams, YOU could be a force in educating yourself & sharing with ALL constituents here to unite everyone for the greater good of the community. Wouldn't you prefer THAT to be your legacy, rather than the one your promulgate -- divisiveness, fear & spreading rumors rather than facts?
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED HERE FRIDAY, APRIL 30TH AT 9:05PM
KING-5 News in Seattle reported this evening that the primary lending bank of Yelm's defaulted 5,000-home Thurston Highlands development was seized by the FDIC and sold today:
"State regulators shut down struggling Everett-based Frontier Bank Friday [April 30], which was then sold to Union Bank.
The Washington Department of Financial Institutions closed the bank, citing inadequate capital and severe loan losses associated with its construction loan portfolio.
[CLICK HERE for the Washington Department of Financial Institutions report on this seizure.]
'Frontier's management team has worked hard to recapitalize the bank throughout the past year,' said DFI bank division director Brad Williamson. 'However, the economic climate has made this task very difficult and the continuing loan losses finally brought the bank's capital to an unsustainable level.'"
Another sad tale in the saga known as Yelm's Thurston Highlands & Tahoma Terra.
And, just more evidence that developers' wide-eyed dreams, married with a total disregard of state regulations put in-place to protect the public's interests by local Yelm officials, coupled with unscrupulous bankers and a financing system that ignored accepted banking standards have all contributed to these two bankrupt developments & huge legal expenditures in Yelm's budget!
This bank's failure follows on the heels of another Yelm-entrenched recent bank failure - Venture Bank.
No doubt when historians & towns folk look back on these times from a more educated view, the 2000-2010 decade of Yelm's leaders' decisions will be seen as some of the more detrimental to the public in the city's history!
The issues facing Frontier had been covered here several times previously, including the most recent entry on April 2, 2010:
"Stock in Frontier Bank, which has a branch at 130 Marvin Road S.E. in Lacey, fell to a 52-week low Wednesday [March 31] on news this week that President John Dickson has abruptly resigned...
Neither Dickson nor Frontier Chairman and CEO Patrick Fahey commented on the change in leadership...
Frontier announced last week that its holding company, Frontier Financial Corp., had received a “Supervisory Prompt Corrective Action Directive” on March 16 from its regulator, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
With a deadline of 30 days – or by April 15 – the order demanded that the bank “must either recapitalize by the sale of shares or obligations so that the bank will be adequately recapitalized, or accept an offer to be acquired by another institution.” The order also repeated other restrictions previously imposed," quoting The Olympian.
As reported last Fall,
"Thurston Highlands, one of the largest proposed mixed-use developments in the state, has emerged as the biggest example of how the economic crisis has had a corrosive effect on development.
Through its trustee, the project’s primary lender, Frontier Bank, has started foreclosure proceedings on the 1,250-acre property after saying a loan was in default. The trustee is scheduled to auction the property to the highest bidder on the Thurston County Courthouse steps June 5, " quoting The Olympian on May 15, 2009.