On April 13, 2005, Yelm area resident Bill Hashim requested of the City Council that a moratorium be placed on any further building here until the Critical Area’s Update could be completed – a moratorium that would have placed the then-proposed Wal-Mart Superstore approval process on hold until more study and compliance with the Growth Management Hearings Board could be accomplished.
So outraged was the City Council at the continuing public outcry about a Wal-Mart here, then City Council member Bob Isom (now Mayor Pro-tem) immediately motioned for a moratorium on moratoriums and at another council session, passed a resolution that the name Wal-Mart and/or big box stores not be brought before the council again. Council member Joe Baker seconded the motion.
[Quoting the City’s website of the Minutes of April 13, 2005: “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.”]
That act was in addition to Yelm receiving the egregious Jefferson Muzzle Award for not permitting the public to mention the word Wal-Mart in Council Chambers.
For those of you that do not remember this embarrassing charade in which this city was highlighted nationally, read the Seattle P-I report from June 24, 2005.
Wal-mart is here now along with all of the other growth and the city is about out of water.
Given the city is pumping almost to their maximum allocation and has so many approved permits not yet hooked-up to the water supply, isn’t this a good time to take a pause and think about ending the moratorium on moratorium’s?
After all, Lacey, Tumwater and other municipalities are looking at the “m” word as their building sprees have taken them near their maximum water allotments.
Wouldn’t the wise thing be to put a moratorium on any more building permits until the City finds out what new water rights applications will bear, what will happen with their appeal of a Court case, legislative items discussed here previously, and so many other water issues?
This chilling title from UK’s Independent about a United Nations report and The World Water Forum meeting in Istanbul this week say it all:
“Water scarcity ‘now bigger threat than financial crisis'”
Cascade Crest of the Seattle chapter of the Sierra Club has an article this month about how Orting & Enumclaw almost sold their water rights to the multi-national corporation Nestle and asks, “What was our mayor thinking?” The writer went on to say, “I had trouble getting the city to disclose public records that took six weeks to produce. Government transparency seemed purposefully thwarted… We need local and state legislation now to protect the people’s water against future water grabs.” HMMM! Sound familiar? This story is not yet accessible online, however last Fall’s update on this very issue is. CLICK HERE, then scroll to page 7.
UPDATE: To Access the story, CLICK HERE. Scroll to page 9.
Can we in the Yelm area afford to be as cavalier about all of the growth vs. our limited water resources as we have been in the last 4 years?
ISN’T IT TIME TO PUT THE EMBARRASSING CHAPTER OF YELM’S MORATORIUMS ON MORATORIUMS BEHIND US AND TAKE A PAUSE BEFORE THE CITY IS OUT OF WATER?
WORLD WATER DAY THIS SUNDAY
“In 1992, the UN General Assembly designated March 22 as “World Water Day” to draw international attention to the critical lack of clean, safe drinking water worldwide.
In 2007, 69 cities across the United States passed resolutions acknowledging March 22 as World Water Day.
World Water Day is an international day of observance and action to draw attention to the plight of the more than 1 billion people world wide that lack access to clean, safe drinking water. Celebrated since 1993, World Water Day was designated in 1992 when the United Nations (UN) General Assembly passed a resolution. With each passing year, the observance has grown larger and stronger,” quoting the World Water Day website.
I wrote to Mayor Harding last year asking he & the City Council to consider the City of Yelm joining the list of “Cities that recognized World Water Day…” in 2008 and was rebuffed, with the city only agreeing to commemorate this day with information on the city’s electronic reader board outside City Hall.