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City of Yelm street scene
Photo courtesy of Yelm-based photographer Guustaaf Damave

1. The City Council voted in Resolution 472 updating the city’s annexation policy in response to a citizen’s request for residential annexation last month that was denied, while the city approved a commercial development saying the residential request did not have quite enough water rights, yet the commerically zoned area would use much less water.
Let’s see;
The city accepts an application from Thurston Highlands for a major development WITHOUT proof of adequate water and denies a lady who owns a small parcel and requested annexation because she is short just a tad on water rights.
Has anyone asked city officals on the record why they continue to accept applications for commercial and large residential developments when water in town is uncertain?
How can the city approve a “Starbucks, AutoZone, Anytime Fitness, Kentucky Fried Chicken/Taco Bell, Desert Sun Tanning, and a teriyaki shop” all on the corner of Creek St & Yelm Highway “on a site plan for the 4-acre site that will ultimately house 34,000 square feet of retail space in four buildings,” quoting the NVN and say these businesses use less water than a residential annexation request down the street?
Seems like the city is in a “cya” mode with Resolution 472 since their public explanations to the lady denying her annexation request were totally inadequate and everyone in the council chambers got to observe that.
I don’t get it.
Or, is there something else going on here?

2. The city council was told tonight that the 510 Loop has had an additional $12 million moved forward to secure right of way. The WA DOT says, “The Right of Way Plan was approved December 7, 2006, and right of way acquisition continues. Of approximately 100 properties needed for the project, 13 parcels have been acquired, 10 parcels are currently in negotiation, and 14 are being appraised. An additional $8 million was advanced in January 2007 from future biennium to acquire right of way from willing sellers this biennium.
NEPA re-evaluation is in progress and is expected to be completed by the end of December 2007.”

Be sure to check out the chart of the “Planned vs. Actual Expenditures” on this project — what an eye-opener!

3. The City Council was told tonight that the city was not successful in obtaining state funding for a rail line upgrade on the Yelm owned track. The city will appeal to the Federal government for funding. The council agreed to move this issue to a mid-summer study session to review suggestions for getting rail line funding.
Please see my comments on this subject, scroll to April 12’s entry.
HMMM! What about dealing with the city’s traffic mess, as the Loop is barely 40% funded and years away!
With all of the commercial & large residential developments coming, Yelm is going to need more traffic relief and soon.

4. The city council was told tonight that the Steven’s St. extension will be completed by September 1.
The city has been asked by this writer about the potential traffic bottle neck at Edwards & Yelm Ave. West from added Stevens St. traffic. The city responded they feel there will be none. School busses clog that intersection now in the mornings without the added Stevens St. flow. Stay tuned as another light or traffic circle may be warranted there, and soon!

5. City job postings:
– The City of Yelm is looking for a water plant operator.
– The City of Yelm is seeking a Government and Community Relations Coordinator who plays an essential support role in providing key assistance to the Mayor and City Administrator. This position is responsible for coordinating and developing the Citys response on emergent public policy, legislative, community, and/or intergovernmental issues as assigned. Work is performed under general administrative direction from the City Administrator with initiative, discretion, and independent judgment in the performance of duties based on extensive knowledge of City policies, procedures and operations.
$46,800 to $55,896 annual salary

6. Construction has begun on the new Public Safety Building. This new municipal building will be home to the Police and Court Departments as well as be host to City Council meetings and various City functions. The $3M project was funded through A rated bonds. The expected completion date is March, 2008.

Posted by Steve on May 8, 2007 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

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One comment

  1. Is Kentucky Fried chicken backing out?

    Comment by Jan Leeper on April 4, 2008 at 3:24 am

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