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Yelm Business Assn. 2015 achievements –
Highlights include opening a community-wide conversation

The Yelm Business Association (YBA) has as their Mission Statement:
“to preserve, promote, and enhance Yelm’s locally-owned businesses by acting as an advocate to local government, by improving Yelm’s aesthetic appeal, and by encouraging citizen and business involvement in the community.”

This this was demonstrated in-action in 2015, as a robust conversation was begun by the YBA and their committees involving the business community and the public.

A partial listing of the 2015 YBA accomplishments include:
* Yelm Business Assn’s. (YBA) 2nd General Meeting, January 13th.
The Yelm Business Association hosted Thurston County Economic Development Council Deputy Director Renee Sundee for their second General Meeting, at Yelm’s Triad Theater. The open-to-the-public meeting had a wide variety of business owners present to hear Ms. Sundee’s talk.

* Yelm Business Assn & Yelm Chamber co-host speaker, January 15th.
Featured speaker George Sharp, Executive Director of the Olympia Lacey Tumwater Visitor and Convention Bureau (OLTVCB), the official Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) for Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater and Thurston County, Washington.

* The Yelm Business Assn. sponsored first Town Hall Public Forum, March 10th.
YBA Executive Director Dan Crowe of Crowe Law mediated the event held at Yelm Middle School that had a nice cross section of the community and a robust public discussion on key issues. This was the first Town Hall Public Forum held since Mayor Harding was elected in 2005.

* YBA Exec. Dir. Dan Crowe had a letter published in the Nisqually Valley News (NVN), April 9th.
Titled: “Yelm Business Association Seeks Much-Needed Changes”
YBA submitted this letter to Yelm’s City Council and Mayor Harding which provided results of public Town Hall Forum. Seeks to cultivate a long term partnership between local businesses and the city, work on developing a strong business core, beautifying our city, and holding fun, relevant events that bring people from the surrounding areas into the city.

* YBA Board of Directors presented public proposal to Yelm City Council, June 9th.
Advocated naming of Community Center after former Mayor Kathy Wolf, endorsed by the Wolf Family.
Click here for the letter.

* The Yelm Business Assn. held their 2nd Town Hall Public Forum, June 16th.
Key on the agenda:
Questions from the audience on the Yelm Comprehensive Plan fielded by members of the Yelm Planning Commission,
The architect hired as consultant on the 1995 Yelm Vision Plan, John Owen, addressed the importance of visioning for the future and public involvement in the process,
The new YBA Citizen’s Advisory Committee was introduced for the public to participate, represented by a committee Board member.

*The Yelm Business Assn. submitted letter to the Yelm City Council, July 28th.
YBA requested the current status of the city of Yelm’s hotel/motel tax fund and committee makeup to disseminate to those funds.
Click here to read the letter.

* The Yelm Business Assn. held a rally to unite all area artists, July 29th.
YBA’s Beautification Committee beings conversation with local artists to hold events highlighting the talent in our community.

* YBA’s Beautification Committee Draft Report released, September 3rd.
Nisqually Valley News (NVN) Editor/Publisher Michael Wagar published excerpts of the report endorsing the YBA’s platform of cultivating a community conversation:
“In past editorials the Nisqually Valley News has encouraged the city of Yelm to work with the fledgling Yelm Business Association.”

“The following are highlights from the report that we believe deserve consideration by city administration and the Yelm City Council. Most important, we believe it is in all of our interests to have a vigorous, open debate on moving Yelm forward from, as the goal of the committee states, a drive-by city to a destination city. Yelm and its surrounding environs has (sic) so much to offer.”
Click here to read the letter.

* The YBA Board submitted 2nd letter to the Yelm City Council on Community Center naming, September 14th.
The YBA received no response from their June 9th letter on naming the Community Center for former Mayor Kathy Wolf.
Click here to read the letter.

* The Yelm Business Assn. forced to reschedule Art Show, September 18th.
Reason: “because of the city’s initial determination that each artists participating in the art show be required to have a business license, may artists declined to participate.”
The City of Yelm finally changed their requirement after checking with other nearby cities and discovered none of them required a business license from art show participants, which limited participation. Art Show announced for December.

* YBA Board met with newly-appointed Yelm Chamber Executive Director Victoria Wortberg, September 23rd.
At Wortberg’s invitation, YBA Board discussed with Chamber’s Executive Director common goals, visions, the future, how both groups can work together to create a synergy in the community.

* YBA founding Board Member Molly Carmody was elected to the Yelm City Council, November 4th.
Carmody handily defeats 3-term incumbent Joe Baker for Council Position 2.
The YBA supported Council candidates running on platforms of open government, transparency and open dialogue with constituents.
In addition to Carmody, Tad Stillwell (Position 4) and Joe DePinto (Position 6) ran campaigns with those commitments to the public and defeated each of their opponents.
Councilor-elect Carmody to resign from YBA Board as Bylaws state elected officials may not serve on YBA Board due to an appearance of a conflict-of-interest.

* YBA issues first of quarterly newsletters to members, November 4th.
Click here for the Yelm Business Assn. 4th Quarter 2015 YBA Newsletter.

* The Yelm Business Association (YBA) and The Triad Arts Theater co-sponsored the first community arts and crafts show, December 12th.
Yelm Art Show dazzles in showcasing the varied talents from this community.

* The Yelm Business Assn. accepts the resignation of founding YBA Board member Molly Carmody, December 29th.
YBA Board Bylaws state elected officials may not serve on YBA Board due to an appearance of a conflict-of-interest.
Carmody was sworn-in as Yelm City Councilor, Position 2.

* The Nisqually Valley News (NVN) features YBA co-sponsored event as a major 2015 art story, December 3oth.
“Art Dominates Life in the Valley in 2015”
Read more

Blogger Klein is a YBA founding board member.

Posted by Steve on December 30, 2015 at 5:54 am | Permalink

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