February 19, 2018

President’s Day in America, 2017

Warren G. Harding, Andrew Jackson, Calvin Coolidge
Photos Everett Collection/Rex Features

– President’s Day
“Washington’s Birthday [Feb. 22, 1732] is a United States federal holiday celebrated on the third Monday of February in honor of George Washington, the first President of the United States. It is also commonly known as Presidents Day (sometimes spelled Presidents’ Day or President’s Day). As Washington’s Birthday or Presidents Day, it is also the official name of a concurrent state holiday celebrated on the same day in a number of states,” quoting Wikipedia.
Read more

Read more of President’s Day trivia from MSN.

Most government offices, libraries, and many banks will be closed, and there will be no U. S. Postal Services.

– Gov. Jay Inslee calls for gun legislation as President’s Day Weekend began
Inslee: “Our state and our nation need action against gun violence and we need it this year”

While speaking to Mom’s Rising members in the Legislative Building today [Feb. 16], Gov. Jay Inslee called on the Legislature and Congress to pass common sense gun-safety legislation this year. His comments follow another massacre at a high school – this time in Parkland, Florida.
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February 18, 2018

Karen Fraser recognized as a trailblazer with a trail naming,
Port of Oly names waterfront park and trail for Billy Frank, Jr.

Sen. Karen Fraser
Photo credit: Thurston Talk

– “People in Politics: Karen Fraser
“In recognition of Karen Fraser’s decades of service and long list of accomplishments, the area’s Woodland Trail that runs through Lacey and Olympia was recently renamed Karen Fraser Woodland Trail. The City of Lacey noted that the Trail’s new name was a fitting tribute for someone who has been a “trailblazer” from Lacey to the state Capital.”

“There were monthly meetings, public testimony, lots of data and tours up and down the entire basin. The work of the task force needed to represent the balance of all interests.

“‘There are at least two dams, agriculture and towns like Yelm on the river,’ noted Karen. ‘There’s a whole chapter in our final report on economic enhancement. It is not just locking up all the land around the river.’

“Approved by the Legislature, the final plan established the Nisqually River Council that to this day, helps implement the plan,” by Barb Lally, Thurston Talk.
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Billy Frank, Jr. Park, Olympia
Photo credit: Port of Olympia

– “[Olympia] waterfront trail and park will be named for Nisqually activist Billy Frank Jr.”
“The Port of Olympia commission has unanimously approved a waterfront project that will name a trail and park for Billy Frank Jr., the legendary Nisqually tribal activist who died in 2014.

The project is expected to begin with a dedication ceremony March 9, Frank’s birthday. Once complete, a trail that runs along East Bay, as well as a park at the north end of the port peninsula, will be named for him, port spokeswoman Jennie Foglia-Jones said,” by Rolf Boone, The Olympian.
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February 18, 2018

Thurston County Sheriff’s virtual ride-along began in Yelm

– “Thurston County turns to Facebook for new deputies”
“Deputy Chris Schoenberg did something new Friday [Feb. 16].

“He took visitors on the Thurston County Sheriff’s Department Facebook and Instagram pages on a virtual ride-along [In Yelm],” by Matt Markovich, KOMO-TV 4 News, Seattle.
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February 17, 2018

Yelm Mayor is officially not a “full time mayor,” rather part-time,
Regardless of Foster’s continued use of this term

Mayor JW Foster
Photo credit: City of Yelm

– Story highlights
* Yelm Mayor JW Foster calls his title “your full-time mayor,”
* The Yelm Municipal Code (YMC) directs the mayor’s as a part-time post,
* City Administrator is a full-time position to supervise city functions,
* Mayor paid $30,000 + benefits annually, highest part-time mayor’s salary in county,
* City Administrator has a salary range of $110,948-$148,681,
* Is Foster lobbying for a salary increase by continued use of the term “full-time mayor?”
* Or does he want the council to pass an ordinance making the mayor a full-time post,
* Such a move would require the City Administrator position to be downgraded.
* Recommendation: Foster could instead describe himself as “your dedicated mayor.”
* Mayor Foster supports transparency, which requires use of an appropriate description.

– Foster calls himself “your full time mayor” during campaign and since
During last Fall’s campaign for mayor, JW Foster called himself Yelm’s full-time mayor in several events, which drew questions from those that are familiar with the Yelm Municipal Code (YMC). The city’s directive is that the Yelm Mayor is a part-time post, with the City Administrator a full-time position which oversees the city’s daily functions.

Mr. Foster called himself “your full time mayor” yet again at the State of the City.
The local newspaper quoted his statement to which I responded on-line as follows:

“The Yelm Municipal Code directs the Mayor to be a part-time position to serve as the chief executive and administrative officer of the city, paid $30,000 annually, reflective of the part-time status. The City Administrator is designated as a full-time position to supervise, administer, and coordinate the activities and functions of the city, with a corresponding salary range of $110,948-$148,681,
according to the 2018 city budget. While Mr. Foster has been calling himself “your full-time mayor” for some time now, perhaps because he chooses to participate in other activities with many not requiring his official attendance as Mayor, yet he takes on that mantle resulting in the use of the term being disingenuous. To provide more transparency, a suggestion would be for Foster to say he is “your dedicated mayor.” Otherwise, if Mayor Foster continues to use the “full time mayor” description, the Yelm City Council should discuss changing the Yelm Mayor to a full-time administrative position and down-grade the City Administrator post.”

– Bottom Line:
While Mr. Foster has chosen to take on all of these duties below, no one asked him to take on so much. This town also has a City Administrator properly remunerated to supervise, administer, and coordinate the activities and functions of the city. Both do not need to participate on these committees.

Committee & Liaison Assignments (from the Mayor’s page)
* Yelm Community & Economic Development Committee
* Yelm Public Safety Committee
* Yelm Public Works Committee
* Yelm Finance Committee
* Vice Chair – Thurston Regional Planning Council
* Member – South Sound Military and Community Partnership, Elected Officials Council

Mayor Foster represents Yelm on the following committees
From the February 13 City Council Agenda
* Yelm Emergency Operations Board
* Community Investment Partnership (CIP)

From the Nisqually Land Trust
* JW Foster is President

If Foster is soliciting for more salary and benefits by his continued use of the term “full time mayor,” the Yelm City Council is the forum to address this. Otherwise, use of his mayoral campaign’s slogans are long over.

“With integrity, nothing else counts. Without integrity, nothing else counts”
Attributed to Winston Churchill

February 17, 2018

Yelm mother Brittanie High featured in KIRO-7 TV story

– “Five things to know about how you can help Jesse Jones erase local medical debt”

“2. Making real changes for local people”
“Millions of Americans face crushing medical debt every day, including Brittanie High, a mother from Yelm who is struggling to get by after her son Lincoln was born prematurely.

“‘I’ve had to deal with not only having a newborn, then adding on top of this medical debt, especially with a special needs son,’ said High. ‘It’s just something that I don’t think anybody should have to deal with, especially with having insurance,'” quoting KIRO 7 News Staff.
Read more

February 17, 2018

Every American recommended to read the full indictment,
“How Russians interfered in 2016 election”

– “‘Information warfare’: How Russians interfered in 2016 election”
by Dartunorro Clark, NBC News.
Read more

Click here to read the full indictment.

February 16, 2018

Yelm Schools Bond update – vote count leaning to not pass

A 60% majority approval is required for the Yelm Schools Bond to pass.
The Yelm Schools Special Bond measure remains too close to call with a 58.9% approval, though all week has remained under the 60% super-majority required for approval. While still possible to pass, the measure is leaning to fail.
Next updated count is February 22nd, with certification the 23rd.

Results as of tonight:
Thurston County
3,204 votes Approve 60.77%
2,068 votes Reject 39.23%
Total votes 5,272
Click here for the results.

Pierce County
439 votes Approve 48.19%
472 votes Reject 51.81%
Total votes 911
Click here for the results.

Approve 3,643 = 58.9%
Reject 2,540 = 41.1%
Total 6,183

February 16, 2018

Record-breaking cold air forecast here beginning Sunday night,
Coldest air yet of the season to descend into Yelm

NWS forecast temps Feb., 21-27
Photo credit: National Weather Service, @NWSSeattle

– National Weather Service Seattle predicts record cold coming
After a wet start to the President’s Day holiday weekend today and tomorrow with highs in the mid 40s, an approaching cold front Saturday will bring winds the NWS says could result in “localized power outages are possible due to downed tree limbs and power lines.” Saturday night into Sunday calls for lowland snow showers with decreasing temperatures reaching only a high in the mid to upper 30s Sunday. Once the front has passed, High Pressure followed by clearing and extremely cold air descends into Puget Sound beginning Sunday night.

– Coldest temperatures of the season Sunday-Tuesday nights, upper teens and low 20s.
Protect your pets, plants, and animals.
Cloud-cover, rain and seasonal temperatures return Wednesday.
Click here for the Yelm forecast.

February 16, 2018

Sea-Tac’s Presidents Day Weekend travel expected to top 2017’s –
Be prepared with traveler tips!

– “Presidents Day Airport Travel Expected to Top Last Year”
“Heavy Traffic and Delays Expected on Drives During Peak Travel”

“On the heels of announcing a seventh consecutive record year, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport expects to welcome more than 650,000 travelers through the airport over the Presidents Day Weekend. From Thursday, February 15 to Monday, February 19, traffic through the airport is anticipated to be about five percent higher than the same five-day period last year.

“With increased number of travelers, the Port forecasts heavy congestion on the roads leading to the airport. Drivers arriving, picking up or dropping off passengers during peak periods should plan an extra 15-20 minutes of travel time or use alternative routes.

“Peak traffic congestion occurs on the Departure level from approximately 4:30 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. During the middle of the day, from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., both Arrival and Departure drives experience backups. In the evenings, the Arrivals drive experiences heavy traffic from about 8:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m,” from the Port of Seattle.

Read more for additional Traveler Tips.

February 15, 2018

Yelm School’s Bond update – Still too close to call!

A 60% majority approval is required for the Yelm Schools Bond to pass.
The Yelm Schools Special Bond measure remains too close to call with a 58.99% approval.
Next updated count is tomorrow.

Results as of tonight:
Thurston County
3,203 votes Approve 60.78%
2,067 votes Reject 39.22%
Total votes 5,270
Click here for the results.

Pierce County
421 votes Approve 48.22%
452 votes Reject 51.78%
Total votes 861
Click here for the results.

Approve 3,624 = 58.99%
Reject 2,519 = 41.01%
Total 6,143