June 30, 2015

Yelm mayor addresses White Horse Tavern issue –
Another Yelm business responds to receiving city’s letter

– Mayor Harding responds, posted on their Facebook page at 6pm last night:
“Thank you for contacting me about this issue. I have look (sic) into the details surrounding the letter and the violation. Unfortunately the owner of the White house (sic) tavern has misrepresented the circumstances to his face book (sic) group and the City is paying the price.

The letter was sent out to about twenty businesses for violations to our sign code following several residents who complained about violation (sic). Out of all the violators the WHT was the only one that had patriotic colors. The staff member was not thinking about this as he was addressing a larger group of violators and he missed seductions (sic) 18..62.020 which exempts decorations for holidays as well as states the American flag is not a form of advertisement.

Only the first paragraph was shown on face book (sic) but if you would have been able to read the full letter, it showed each business a way they could comply with our sign code at no cost again remembering we were sending this to twenty different businesses. The letter was written not to enforce but assist any business in meeting the requirements.

The owner of the WHT said on his face book (sic) page the City was forcing him to remove the banner, this was not the case, nor did we tell him he would be fined in anyway.

I think what has happened here was a mistake by my staff including his business as a violator and the owner adding some damaging statements to face book (sic) without all the facts and context.

I did contact the owner on Friday and told him to disregard the letter. I hope you will share this information with your contacts (sic)

The bright spot in this situation is that patriotism is alive and well and we can be thankful that people are still this passionate about our county.”
Ron Harding
Mayor

– Another Yelm business owner responds to receiving a letter from the City of Yelm:
Cynthia Schmier shared this with the Yelm Community Blog as one of the 20 businesses to receive the city’s letter –
“I submit from Yelm’s ReMax Country that I am one of the 20 businesses that received a Notice of Correction from John Rowland of Yelm’s Community Development Department.
My box-van has been parked on my property for 10 years and is not placed there for additional advertisement or signage, merely for security. I have spent thousands of dollars due to vandalism and theft of gasoline by parking the company’s van in the rear of my building, for which the police are unable to protect.
I have placed a call and left a message for Mayor Ron Harding to contact me to address this letter.”

Cynthia Schmier
Owner/Broker, ReMax Country

Editor’s note:
Schmier regularly makes this truck available at no charge as a community service to non-profits.
As in the case of White Horse Tavern, “the letter [below] is not an enforcement letter,” quoting Mayor Harding.

Click here for the city’s Notice of Correction.

– From the Yelm Municipal Code:
18.62.030 Prohibited signs.
Prohibited signs are subject to removal by the city at the owner’s or user’s expense, with the exception of a legal nonconforming sign.
The following signs or displays are prohibited:
G. Advertising vehicles, with the exception of the identification of a firm or its principal products on a vehicle operating during normal course of business;”
Read more

Editor’s Note:
Why is the city cracking down now? As examples,
* Bill’s Towing has had their truck parked on their property prominent placed for years, formerly with emergency lights on all night,
* State Farm Insurance parks their bar-b-que truck in front of the Rent-A Center store during the day and in a parking lot on Yelm Ave. at nights and weekends,
* Rent-A Center has their truck parked prominently periodically.


June 30, 2015

July 2: Yelm Business Assn. co-sponsors new business workshop – FREE

Thinking about starting a business, or already own one?

Join the conversation on Thursday, July 2 at 8am
in the Yelm Public Safety Building for a FREE 2 hour workshop,
co-sponsored by the Yelm Business Assn. and the South Thurston Economic Development Initiative (STEDI).
The focus will be on profitability and endurance.


June 29, 2015

City of Yelm proves they are “business unfriendly” –
Firestorm over city’s letter to local business about flag banner

Editor’s Note:
I have lived here 27 years and have never seen so much outrage expressed about actions of the City of Yelm as have been posted this past weekend over White Horse Tavern receiving a letter from the Community Development Department that their American Flag banner was not in compliance with the Yelm Municipal Code. In one simple act, the City of Yelm has infuriated the very constituents with whom they seek to curry favor: Yelm businesses and our neighbors who serve in the military.

While the City of Yelm MAY have valid reasons for asking White Horse Tavern to bring their flag banner in compliance with city code [hanging a temporary banner longer than two weeks, their banner may be larger than 20 square feet], the timing of the letter on the eve of Yelm’s Prairie Days and subsequent July 4th weekend was an extremely poor decision.

Mayor Ron Harding’s survey of local businesses as to Yelm being “non-business friendly” is no longer needed – this letter to White Horse Tavern is totally consistent with the city’s behavior towards local businesses, and the city’s actions speak louder than words!

– Mayor Harding’s post added fuel to the fire, as “the buck did not stop at his desk.”
He posted this, in-part:

“Ok folks, this is Mayor Harding. Just to let you know I did not send the letter in question. I just learned about this tonight and have checked into the situation a bit to try and understand what may have prompted this.”

“I attempted to contact the Owner and let him know to disregard this letter until further notice so I could have time to fully understand the details behind the issue, however he has been unavailable.
I hope this will ease concerns.”

– White Horse Tavern posted this update at 11am Sunday, June 28:
“We have been given indication from city hall that the notice to White Horse may have been in error. We will learn more about the validity of this verbal communication tomorrow.”

– These 4 Facebook posts of almost 700 about the city’s letter say it all:
* “Time to start attending those boring city council meetings to get things right, what are they doing.”

* “If the letter was an error that was one boner of an error. It seems with the 4th coming up they are in compliance with the law. Were it mid August there may be a violation of the law …but it’s not, so basic logic has to win out; right?”

* “Have a patriotic heart Yelm.”

* “So our Mayor throws his staff under the bus in his first sentence-awesome leadership! You are the leader! Lead, accept responsibility, let the bar fly their dollar store banner and move on! Pathetic!”

– Yelm Municipal Code referenced
18.62.010 Intent.
The intent of this chapter is to provide minimum standards for the number, size, design, quality construction, location, electrification and maintenance of all signs and sign structures, and to preserve and improve the appearance of the city. A sign is any communication device, structure, or fixture that is extended to aid an establishment in identification, and to advertise and/or promote a business, service, activity, or interest. (Ord. 995 § 12 (Exh. A), 2015).

18.62.020 Exemptions.
The following are exempt from the regulation of this chapter.
A. The flag, emblem or insignia of a nation or other governmental unit or nonprofit organization, subject to the guidelines concerning its use set forth by the government or organization which it represents.

Editor’s Note:
White Horse Tavern is clearly posting a banner with “The flag, emblem or insignia of a nation (our nation).”

18.62.040 Temporary signs.
A temporary (nonpermanent) sign is intended to be displayed for a limited period of time only. Temporary signs include, but are not limited to signs, banners, pennants, valances, and flags (except as exempted), searchlights (provided the beam of light does not flash against any building or does not sweep an arc of more than 45 degrees from vertical), balloons or other air- or gas-filled figures or advertising display, and sandwich board or sidewalk signs.

C. Special Events. Events for businesses and organizations include sales or other business activities, circuses, carnivals, festivals and other similar events. Temporary signs are allowed on premises only, for a period of 14 days at a time, limited to four times per year, and must be removed at the end of the 14-day period. Temporary signs shall not be larger than 20 square feet. Sandwich board signs shall not exceed two and one-half feet by four feet.

Editor’s Note:
White Horse Tavern clearly has a banner for the special events surrounding Yelm Prairie Days and Independence Day July 4th. Perhaps the city can show SOME leniency in that their flag banner is larger than 20 sq feet and been hanging for longer than 2 weeks.
Read more


City of Yelm letter causing a Facebook firestorm
Photo credit: White Horse Tavern


June 28, 2015

UPDATE: Thurston County protection of pocket gophers


Pocket gophers (Northern pocket gopher shown here) are stout-bodied rodents with small ears and eyes and large clawed front paws. Their large front teeth are used to loosen soil and rocks while digging, as well as to cut and eat roots. (Photo by Ty Smedes.)

– “Thurston permit process to protect gophers”
“Want to build in unincorporated Thurston County? Better submit permits sooner rather than later, county officials say.

That’s because the county released an interim review process aimed at protecting Mazama pocket gophers, which will be in place between now and October 2016.

The screening process remains about the same as it was last year, the county stated, which resulted in more than 90 percent of permit applicants receiving clearance for their permits.

This year’s process includes two or three site visits conducted between June and October by a team of county and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service prairie experts. In order to complete the visits within the timeframe, officials suggest applications need to be submitted by Friday, July 31.

While the screening is free, the process is still a thorny issue for builders,” quoting the Business Examiner.
Read more

– “Gopher review plan expected to expedite building permits, county says”
“The standoff between pocket gophers and developers in unincorporated Thurston County has reached an apparent detente.

Thurston County officials have settled on a process to screen building and development applications that includes a Critical Areas Ordinance review that considers the impact on Mazama pocket gophers and other species. Anyone planning to build in unincorporated Thurston County before October 2016 is urged to apply for permits as soon as possible, the county announced Thursday [June 11],” quoting Jerre Redecker, The Olympian.
Read more


June 27, 2015

Record high temperature today for any June 27

The high temperature for Saturday, June 27 recorded officially at Olympia Regional Airport was 93 degrees, breaking the former record of 91 degrees set on this date in 2000. This marks two record highs on this date in the last 15 years (2015, 2000)!
Read more


June 27, 2015

City’s letter shows how Yelm treats local businesses –
Yelm Mayor Ron Harding can’t label this ‘Steve Klein’s bashing’


City of Yelm letter causing a Facebook firestorm
Photo credit: White Horse Tavern

After Mayor Harding’s non-anonymous business survey letter last week, another letter from the City of Yelm has drawn unprecedented “views” from Facebook responders, prompting Mayor Harding to post a statement at midnight last night:

From Ron-Myrna Harding post on FB:
“Ok folks, this is Mayor Harding. Just to let you know I did not send the letter in question. I just learned about this tonight and have checked into the situation a bit to try and understand what may have prompted this.
I believe the letter is being misinterpreted to be something other then what the City staff had intended. This letter is not a fine or citation of any kind. The letter is not anti-American or anti-Patriotic in any way. The letter does not say to remove any banner or flags.
I attempted to contact the Owner and let him know to disregard this letter until further notice so I could have time to fully understand the details behind the issue, however he has been unavailable.
I hope this will ease concerns.”

Editor’s note:
No, this will not ‘ease concerns!’
I don’t care what Mr. Harding says, this is from the city’s Community Development Dept., happened on his watch, and is totally consistent with his management style, as reported here for almost a decade.

How many fingers does he have to plug all of the holes in the city’s dike?
All of his policies are coming home to roost – and this one he can’t blame on “Steve Klein bashing!”

Mr. Harding’s Business Survey letter is now a moot point
– the citizens are speaking out on how the city treats local businesses!
Click here for Facebook comments.

– Commenters have called for the ACLU to get involved,
which would not be unprecedented in Yelm, since the ACLU brought the city into national headlines in 2005:
“ACLU Challenges Yelm City Council’s ‘Speak No Wal-Mart’ Policy”
Read more from KOMO-TV 4 in Seattle.

– Yelm Municipal Code referenced
18.62.010 Intent.
The intent of this chapter is to provide minimum standards for the number, size, design, quality construction, location, electrification and maintenance of all signs and sign structures, and to preserve and improve the appearance of the city. A sign is any communication device, structure, or fixture that is extended to aid an establishment in identification, and to advertise and/or promote a business, service, activity, or interest. (Ord. 995 § 12 (Exh. A), 2015).

18.62.020 Exemptions.
The following are exempt from the regulation of this chapter.
A. The flag, emblem or insignia of a nation or other governmental unit or nonprofit organization, subject to the guidelines concerning its use set forth by the government or organization which it represents.

Editor’s Note:
White Horse Tavern is clearly posting a banner with “The flag, emblem or insignia of a nation (our nation).”

18.62.040 Temporary signs.
A temporary (nonpermanent) sign is intended to be displayed for a limited period of time only. Temporary signs include, but are not limited to signs, banners, pennants, valances, and flags (except as exempted), searchlights (provided the beam of light does not flash against any building or does not sweep an arc of more than 45 degrees from vertical), balloons or other air- or gas-filled figures or advertising display, and sandwich board or sidewalk signs.

C. Special Events. Events for businesses and organizations include sales or other business activities, circuses, carnivals, festivals and other similar events. Temporary signs are allowed on premises only, for a period of 14 days at a time, limited to four times per year, and must be removed at the end of the 14-day period. Temporary signs shall not be larger than 20 square feet. Sandwich board signs shall not exceed two and one-half feet by four feet.

Editor’s Note:
White Horse Tavern clearly has a banner for the special events surrounding Yelm Prairie Days and Independence Day July 4th. Perhaps the city can show SOME leniency in that their flag banner is larger than 20 sq feet.
Read more


June 27, 2015

Thurston County reports on ‘Cooling Centers’ open in our area

Thurston County reports on open-to-the-public air conditioned “Cooling Centers”
Read more

In Yelm:
• Yelm Timberland Library, 210 Prairie Park St., open 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday, closed Sunday and Monday,

• Yelm Public Safety Building, 206 McKenzie Ave. SE, open 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Click here for the full list of Thurston County Cooling center locations.

Click here for the Thurston County Medic One pamphlet on “important prevention tips” during this excessive heat.


June 27, 2015

Excessive Heat continues here through July

“A torrid heat wave is now shifting into high gear and may shatter June or even all-time records in parts of the Great Basin and Northwest. Furthermore, it is likely to last well into early July,” quoting the Weather Channel.
Read more

Yelm is forecast to have temperatures in the 90’s and into the 100’s in the next 10 days.
Click here


June 26, 2015

Justice Kennedy writes decision legalizing Gay Marriage in America!


Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the decision legalizing U. S. same-sex marriage
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Quoted from page 28 of the Syllabus of the SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES
OBERGEFELL ET AL v HODGES, DIRECTOR, OHIO DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH, ET AL

CERTIORARI TO THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE SIXTH CIRCUIT
No. 14–556. Argued April 28, 2015—Decided June 26, 2015*

“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family.
In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were. As some of the petitioners in these cases demonstrate, marriage embodies a love that may endure even past death. It would misunderstand these men and women to say they disrespect the idea of marriage. Their plea is that they do respect it, respect it so deeply that they seek to find its
fulfillment for themselves. Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness, excluded from one of civilization’s oldest institutions. They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law. The Constitution grants them that right.
The judgment of the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit is reversed.

It is so ordered.

Click here scroll to page 33

– “The Beautiful Closing Paragraph of Justice Kennedy’s Gay Marriage Ruling”
By Jordan Weissmann, Slate.
Read more

Editor’s note:
This is the correct decision for all the reasons stated above by The Court. Love all-ways prevails!


June 26, 2015

Contrails (Chemtrails) prevalent in Yelm on sunny days


Chemtrails disburse east from Bald Hill Road, Friday, June 26, 2:45pm
Photo Copyright © 2015 Stephen R. Klein

– Contrails (Chemtrails)
“In 2010 an Aerospace Engineers presented conclusive evidence for Covert Stratospheric Aerosol Geoengineering, (aka “Chemtrails”) in a 336 page report called “CASE ORANGE”. The report was commissioned by THE BELFORT GROUP (UK), who held a “CHEMTRAILS SYMPOSIUM” where the conclusions were presented by Aerospace Engineer, Dr. Coen Vermeeren. The Video is on YOUTUBE — ALSO: The term “chemtrails” is in the text of 2001 legislation, (HR-2977) where “chemtrails” are defined as an “exotic weapon,” quoting the American Patriot Friends Network (APFN).
Read more

– “Ted L Gunderson (former Chief FBI Agent in Charge in Los Angeles, Dallas, and Memphis) Blasts FBI and Asks Chemtrail Pilots to Come Forward”
Click here for the 2011 interview.

– “Chemtrail Pilot Blows the Lid Off OPERATION INDIGO SKYFOLD”
Posted April 2, 2015
“Maybe my fellow pilots will read or hear about this, and decide to come forward as well.”

“A Courageous Chemtrail Pilot Exposes the Global Geoengineering Program”
From eClinik.
Read more

Editor’s note:
So many people do not believe these contrails and chemtrails are man-made for nefarious purposes. Logic certainly dictates otherwise when one has knowledge.
As Mark Twain said, “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”


Chemtrail disbursing, sw view from Lackamas School area, Friday, June 26, 2:55pm
Photo Copyright © 2015 Stephen R. Klein


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