January 23, 2014

Bald Hills Rd. Microwave Cell-Tower Proposal

Cell Phone Tower on JBLM near Tacoma, notice the dying trees all around

The Meridian Group has sent a letter advising all property owners within 2,600 feet regarding a proposed American Tower Corporation 150-foot Monopole at 14401 Bald Hill Rd SE, Yelm, WA, which is located close to the junction at Smith Prairie and Lake Lawrence Rd. SE.

They said the letter was notifying about the required balloon test, consisting of flying a three foot diameter balloon at the 150-foot level from the location on the ground where the monopole would be situated.

The test is scheduled for Tuesday January 28th from 9am – 5pm. Should there be fog, poor visibility or strong winds on that date, the alternative date test would take place on Thursday, January 30th from 9am – 5pm.
Read more from the letter notification.

January 23, 2014

“Olympia inches closer to adopting a new comp. plan”

“Olympia inches closer to adopting a new comprehensive plan with citizen input”

By Andy Hobbs in The Olympian:
“The Olympia City Council voted Tuesday to move forward with the next steps in adopting an updated comprehensive plan.

The comprehensive plan describes the citys goals and vision for the next 20 years. Olympia began working on an update in 2009, starting the process by soliciting public input on the types of programs and policies the city should implement.”

“The plan covers everything from transportation and neighborhood zoning to land use and downtown revitalization. Specific issues that were addressed by citizens included more public participation in city projects, along with concerns about climate change and rising sea levels.

One key concern was sustainability, as reflected in a county initiative called Sustainable Thurston. Examples of sustainability efforts could include more urban green spaces, resource conservation and low-impact development.”

“Thurston County cities have a June 2016 deadline to make revisions in accordance with the Growth Management Act.”
Read more

Editor’s Note:
One can only hope the Yelm City Council will be more considerate of public input on their Comp Plan, where previously, they have mostly bristled at or rejected most public comment.

January 22, 2014

Thurston’s WA State Patrol Commander reassigned

“The district commander in charge of Washington State Patrol troopers in Pierce and Thurston counties has been reassigned after he allowed his son and his sons girlfriend into a Seattle Seahawks game even though they had no tickets, The News Tribune has learned, quoting The Trib’s Alaxis Krell.
Read more

Editor’s note:
He should have been fired for compromising his position of public trust!

January 22, 2014

“Faith Communities Preparedness” in Yelm Monday

From Thurston County Emergency Management:
“Local faith organizations meet quarterly to discuss disaster planning for their organizations and for the county.

Our program builds upon the “3 Days, 3 Ways” concept: Make a Plan, Have a Kit, Get Involved.

The meetings are generally held the last Monday evening of the first month of each quarter.

Next Meeting:

Monday, January 27 ~ 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Emanuel Lutheran Church
206 SE 3rd St
Yelm, WA 98597
Read more

January 21, 2014

Yelm Crime increases, as told to City Council 8 yrs ago

“Yelm Police: 35% Increase in Calls”
“Warrant Arrests Up 78 Percent”

“Growth is the largest contributor of what he [Police Chief Todd Stancil] called a pretty significant increase in calls for service.”

Professional Engineer Ed Wiltsie (now deceased), Bill Hashim (then a 25+ year Ecology veteran) and I all publicly commented to the Yelm City Council in 2005 and 2006 about the “Lessons of Consequence” this city would face with their GROW, GROW, GROW policies, where the population has more than doubled since then, with Yelm in the top-ten growing cities in the State of Washington.

Now, this week’s Nisqually Valley News headline story underscores what the three of us said almost ten years ago, where Yelm City Council’s policies will bring to this lovely rural town:
– increased traffic where road expansion will be continually required
– side streets will end up carrying truck and commercial traffic through our neighborhoods where children play
– air, water and noise pollution will proliferate
– ground-water runoff from big-box stores’ parking lots containing toxic vehicle oils will occur
– pressure on water resources with so much water pumped from the ground
– increased gray water and sewage taxing the city’s water treatment facilities
– crime will steadily increase, disproportionately

Now, all of those things have occurred!


1. On June 28, 2006, Bill Hashim penned this Guest Entry for this Blog on this very subject
Read more

2. On October 24, 2006, Ed Wiltsie, PE was the only speaker to make a public comment at the 2006 City Council meeting regarding Ordinance 858 amending the Yelm Comprehensive Plan regarding traffic. Even the city’s own Development Director, Grant Beck stated in his staff report to the Council that evening: “The City Council should carefully consider the points raised by Mr. Wiltsie in which he indicates that the establishment of a [traffic grade] level of service F in the downtown core is not being used as intended by the 2001 Comprehensive Transportation Plan as adopted by the Yelm Planning Commission and the Yelm City Council, as the intention of the City Council is ultimately determined by the City Council. If the Council’s intention is correctly expressed by Mr. Wiltsie’s comments, it should clarify that for the record.”
Yet, the City approved the Comprehensive Plan revisions unanimously anyway without nay consideration of Wiltsie’s or Beck’s comments.
Read more

3. I stated on September 8, 2006 in a letter published in the NVN:
“Developers…impact/mitigation fees were a good idea and I applaud the City of Yelm for embracing them in 1995. However the City was following the general trends of area jurisdictions and the process has not been updated here since that 1995 adoption…The City taxpayer (not Wal-Mart) will end up paying for road widening of Yelm Hwy and continuing streets construction to accommodate Wal-Mart generated traffic, since those vehicles will have no Y3 Loop for years and be forced onto city streets. The city mitigation fees did not require Wal-Mart to cover this condition adequately.” Yet, the city says fees are adequate with no action planned. Yelm taxpayer will pay.
Read more

4. 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.
Read more

January 20, 2014

Remembering MLK, Jr.

Civil rights leader Martin Luther King
in Montgomery, Alabama, April 29, 1966.
(Photo: JRT / AP)

This story has been posted here annually on MLK, Jr. Day since 2009.


“Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929 April 4, 1968) was an American clergyman, activist and prominent leader in the African-American civil rights movement. His main legacy was to secure progress on civil rights in the United States, and he has become a human rights icon: King is recognized as a martyr by two Christian churches. A Baptist minister, King became a civil rights activist early in his career. He led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott and helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957, serving as its first president. King’s efforts led to the 1963 March on Washington, where King delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech. There, he raised public consciousness of the civil rights movement and established himself as one of the greatest orators in U.S. history.

In 1964, King became the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize for his work to end racial segregation and racial discrimination through civil disobedience and other non-violent means. By the time of his death in 1968, he had refocused his efforts on ending poverty and opposing the Vietnam War, both from a religious perspective. King was assassinated on April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1977 and Congressional Gold Medal in 2004; Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was established as a U.S. national holiday in 1986,” quoting Wikipedia.

The Seattle Times has a fabulous expose on the civil rights giant.
Click here

“The full version of Martin Luther King’s famous “I have a dream” speech.”
August 28, 1963 on YouTube.

“Towering legend, flawed man? King’s image evolving”
“Some fear civil right leader’s legacy is lost on many ”
Read more from Brett Zongker & Samantha Gross for the AP on MSNBC.

“Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. in Washington”
By John Makely, NBC News.
Read more

January 19, 2014

‘Homeless Connect’ fair in Yelm Thursday

A ‘Homeless Connect’ resource fair will be conducted in Yelm this Thursday:
WHAT: 2014 Thurston County Homeless Census
WHEN: Thursday, January 23, 1-4pm
WHERE: Yelm Community Services, 624 Crystal Springs Rd. NW, Yelm

The annual Thurston County Homeless Census is overseen by the Thurston County HOME Consortium, comprised of elected officials from Bucoda, Olympia, Lacey, Rainier, Tenino, Tumwater, Yelm, and Thurston County and is an advisory board to the Thurston County Board of Commissioners.
Yelm City Council member Mike McGowan represents Yelm on the HOME Consortium Board.

The the 2013 homeless census report had several key points about Yelm and vicinity:
– 56% increase in homelessness in Thurston County since 2006,
– Yelm Community Services has six shelter beds,
– Churches offer additional, informal shelter resources in their facilities,
– Rural areas are more likely to find people living in vehicles or substandard structures that dont meet housing standards,
– they tend to rely on informal networks for food, shelter and other needs and fall beyond the radar of services providers and state programs,
– Yelm social services are anchored by Yelm Community Services Center and supported by faith-based organizations and civic organizations,
– Emanuel Lutheran Church and Covenant Crossroads Church in Yelm provide an evening meal and food bank & Yelm Rotary and Yelm Lions clubs participate in food programs,
– Yelm Prairie Christian Center also operates a food bank,
– Yelm, like other rural communities, is challenged by a lack of locally based resources.
– Rural community leaders express concerns about not receiving a proportionate share of available public funding. Rural areas are further challenged by limited public transportation resources for rural people in need who have to travel to access services in the urban hub.

Thursday’s event provides warm clothing and coats, hot meals, and connects people with local social services.
Read more

January 18, 2014

“Foreclosure filings still an issue in Washington”

Yelm’s Tahoma Terra Development
Photo courtesy: Landsat.com

This story is important locally because Yelm real estate agents report to this Blogger that the high foreclosure rate here continues unabated –

By Kathleen Cooper in The Olympian:
“Washington state continued to buck the national foreclosure trend in 2013, and not in a good way.

RealtyTrac, a national data firm, said Wednesday evening that last year the nation saw the fewest overall number of foreclosure filings since 2007. In Washington, the rate of foreclosure filings increased by almost 13 percent from 2012.”
Read more

Click here for Yelm foreclosures.

January 18, 2014

“Washington State Moves To Block NSA Surveillance”

“Bill would cut electricity & water to physical NSA locations”

“Washington State Rep. Matt Shea (R) has introduced a “Fourth Amendment Protection Act’ that would block all unlawful NSA surveillance and lay the groundwork for other states to follow suit.

House BIll 2272 (PDF), which also received bipartisan backing from Representatives Taylor, Moscoso, Overstreet, Scott, Blake, and Condotta, would codify Washington State’s refusal to allow the federal government to collect the electronic information of its citizens without a warrant.

‘It is the policy of this state to refuse material support, participation, or assistance to any federal agency which claims the power, or with any federal law, rule, regulation, or order which purports to authorize, the collection of electronic data or metadata of any person pursuant to any action not based on a warrant that particularly describes the person, place, and thing to be searched or seized,’ states the bill.

Crucially, the legislation would prohibit state-owned utilities from providing water and electricity to physical NSA locations in the state like the U.S. Armys Yakima Training Center, which serves as an NSA listening post. The bill would also ban public universities from serving as NSA research facilities.

‘We’re running with this bill to provide protection against the ever increasing surveillance into the daily lives of our citizens,’ said Republican lawmaker David Taylor.’Our Founding Fathers established a series of checks and balances in the Constitution. Given the federal governments utter failure to address the peoples concerns, its up to the states to stand for our citizens’ constitutional rights’

Section 4 of the bill also blocks funds for political subdivisions that collaborate with any branch of the federal government in aiding in the mass surveillance of citizens of the state.

The legislation also forbids information provided by a federal agency which has been obtained via warrantless surveillance from being used in criminal investigations.

‘We know the NSA shares data with state and local law enforcement,’ said the Tenth Amendment Center’s Mike Maharrey. ‘We know that most of this shared data has absolutely nothing to do with national security issues. This bill would make that information inadmissible in state court. This data sharing shoves a dagger into the heart of the Fourth Amendment. This bill would stop that from happening. This is a no-brainer. Every state should do it.’

The full text of the legislation can be read here, ” quoting Paul Joseph Watson, Propaganda Matrix.

January 17, 2014

JZ-Rose hosts Bettye Johnson book-signing Sat.

Bettye Johnson
Rainier, WA-based award-winning author

Award-winning author and the 2013 Woman of the Year by the National Assn. of Professional Women Bettye Johnson, will hold a book-signing of her most recent book Magdalena of Hy Brasil, Book 3 of the Mary Magdalene Series at JZ-Rose in Yelm, Saturday, January 18, 3pm-5:30pm.
Read more

Click here to purchase your copy of Magdalena of Hy Brasil or purchase in Yelm at JZ-Rose.


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