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Mayor Ron Harding

The media spin almost two weeks ahead of Mayor Harding’s “State of the City” address to the Chamber of Commerce Forum this Tuesday, February 14, has been unprecedented, even for Yelm.

Let’s look at the issues the Mayor is slated to discuss:
1. Accomplishments
– securing water rights (they have not been secured yet, due to a citizen’s appeal)
– drafting purchase documents for the $1 million library facility.
The City Council will sign an Ops & Maintenance agreement with Timberland Regional Library tomorrow. Why did this agreement take 9 months to get resolved?
– city’s fiscal house in order
– Yelm Ave. W. sidewalks rebuilt
– Mosman Rd. realignment funding

2. The Future
– Reintroducing the idea of a Community Center
Quoting the Nisqually Valley News, the mayor said, “The city wouldnt be able to afford to staff the building.”

3. Social issues in our community will NOT be addressed
1. The debt on a $1 million library-purchase bond & what city taxpayers will pony-up
2. The cost of another Community Center structure, when this city already has an outstanding Yelm Community Services facility, suitable for all sorts of public activities. Why doesn’t the city promote it?
3. Utility rate increases for Yelm property owners, again: sewer increase of 5.4%, water rate increase of 8.25%.
4. Continued drop in median home prices.
5. South Sound home values declined again in 2011, 6%
6. The intense demand on local food banks from our friends and neighbors.
7. The City spent almost $300,000 in taxpayer money and lost a water case in Wa. State Supreme Court last year, brought by JZ Knight. Seven of nine Court Justices sided with the Thurston County Superior Court opinion that the city appealed. This impact will not be addressed.
8. Potential cutbacks at SE Thurston Fire Authority.
9. Burglaries and crime continue unabated.
10. The importance of passing the Yelm Schools Levy.
11. Forecast continues with slow economic growth
12. Yelm’s # 1 issue: Traffic
Entries posted here many times over the last 6 years that Yelm Ave. traffic can not be properly handled without its eventual widening.

Spin in the Media:
1. “Yelm mayor to deliver ‘State of the City’ report”
Read more from KOMO-TV 4 in Seattle.

2. “Economic development on a roll”
Read more from Holly Smith Peterson, Pierce County Holly Smith Peterson.

3. “In good stead”
“Mayor to talk about plans for the future, accomplishments”

Read more from Megan Hansen, Nisqually Valley News.

Posted by Steve on February 13, 2012 at 5:49 am | Permalink

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