March 21, 2018

Rep. Heck’s session for students wishing nomination to a U. S. Service Academy

– “Do you know a student interested in obtaining a Congressional nomination to a United States Service Academy?”
“I have the honor of officially recommending students to the five U.S. service academies: the U.S. Air Force Academy, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, the U.S. Military Academy, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, and the U.S. Naval Academy.

“Every year, I host information sessions in the South Sound with representatives from each service academy present to discuss the process and answer your questions.

“This informational event is recommended for all interested high school and middle school students and families residing in Washington state’s 10th Congressional District.”

Join us in Thurston:
Monday, March 26, 2018
6 – 7:30 p.m.
Lacey City Hall Council Chambers
420 College Street S.E.
Lacey, Wash.
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March 20, 2018

Thurston Auditor Mary Hall’s work integral in passing voter access bills

Gov. Inslee signing the Access to Democracy package,
Thurston Auditor Mary Hall to the far right looks on approvingly. 
Photo credit: Office of Gov. Jay Inslee

– Editor’s note:
I am so proud of Thurston County Auditor Mary Hall for her efforts in getting these voter access bills signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee, March 19, 2018. The public is invited to Auditor Hall’s forum this evening at the Yelm Community Center, 6-7:30pm. Click here for more info.

Quoting Hall’s comments:
“It was an honor to be asked to speak at the governors bill signing today [March 19, 2018]. Same day registration, pre-registration for 16 and 17 year-olds, and automatic voter registration were all signed into law today. I worked very hard to get fellow auditor support and get these bills passed. I’m proud to have been one of the driving forces. It was a great day!”
Click here for the signing video, where Auditor Hall begins speaking at 6:30.

“Inslee signs bills to improve state’s democratic process”
“Gov. Jay Inslee today signed five bills — dubbed the Access to Democracy package — to improve voter access and strengthen democracy in Washington state.

“Three of the bills make it easier to register to vote, allowing people to register up to and on Election Day, letting 16- and 17-year-olds pre-register to vote, and creating automatic voter registration for citizens obtaining enhanced driver’s licenses or identification cards through the Department of Licensing.

“These measures aim to address the low participation rate in elections. More than 1 million Washingtonians were eligible to register to vote in 2016 but didn’t, and of those registered, nearly 1 in 5 didn’t vote. The November 2017 General Election set a record low for voter turnout — only 37 percent of voters returned their ballots,” quoting the Office of Gov. Jay Inslee.

March 20, 2018

Yelm Councilor Joe DePinto leads signing into law of Senate Bill 6197

Yelm’s Joe DePinto to the right of Gov. Inslee signing SB 6197,
flanked by staff of Sen. Karen Keiser (D-Kent)
Photo credit: Office of Gov. Jay Inslee

– Editor’s note:
I am so proud of Yelm councilor Joe DePinto on leading the stages of Senate Bill 6197 into signing by Gov. Jay Inslee.

– From Yelm city councilor Joe DePinto on his Facebook page:
“Many of you know that I have been lobbying for the past two Legislative Sessions working for Outcomes by Levy, helping to represent 8 different Puget Sound cities. During that time I have worked on and helped pass many different bills in various stages, but none that I was the lead on since the start.

Well, today [March 13, 2018] SB 6197 was signed into law by Governor Inslee. Senator Keiser was the prime sponsor of this City of Kent requested bill. Due to the help of a lot of good people, this bill made it through both the House and Senate without a single Member voting against it.

It will provide local agencies with the same authority already granted to state agencies in situations where an employee dies and the spousal survivor is due a payout of that employee’s salary, vacation leave, and sick-leave accrual. It allows local governments (like Yelm’s) to make that final payout in one lump sum, regardless if the accounts involved are joint (which currently isn’t a problem) or separate (which is what this bill mainly addresses).

It was an amazing experience taking a problem/issue through the whole process and helping it become law.”
Read more

March 19, 2018

Welcome Spring in Yelm, Tuesday, March 20, 7:10am –
An informal gathering OPEN TO THE PUBLIC!

Yelm sunrise, March 16, 2018

You are invited to join an informal gathering to celebrate/welcome Spring, where our mountain and sun/star embrace in spectacular fashion. Meet by 7:10am in the grassy are between Casa Mia and Yelm Cinemas.
Coffee and donuts will be waiting….

March 19, 2018

Thurston County Auditor Mary Hall re-election PUBLIC FORUM,
Comes to Yelm Tuesday, March 20, Community Center, 6-7:30pm

Photo courtesy: Elect Mary Hall – Democrat

– County Auditor Mary Hall to hold Town Hall re-election public forum in Yelm
The precincts surrounding the city of Yelm were instrumental in lifting Mary Hall’s election victory five years ago, to fill the one-year term on an interim seat, the county’s first Democratic Auditor in 71 years. Auditor Hall is again running for County Auditor and coming to Yelm to connect with the public:

When: Tuesday, March 20, 6-7:30pm
Where: Yelm Community Center
What: Open to the pubic Town Hall Forum with Auditor Mary Hall, refreshments served

Hall ran on a platform in 2013 and 2014 of these ideals and won:
– Proven leadership.
– Award winning innovation.
– Ability to bring divisions together to create efficiencies.
– Collaborative and innovative problem solving.

Hall was recognized in making voting more accessible by advocating for progressive legislation:
* Same Day Voter Registration,
* Automatic Voter Registration
* Pre-registration for 16 and 17 year-olds.
* Washington Voting Rights Act

– Learn more about Elect Mary Hall and contribute to her campaign!
Click here

This forum is sponsored by Yelm Community Blogger Steve Klein.

– “Hall Kicks Off Re-election Campaign in Yelm”
“The precincts surrounding the city of Yelm were instrumental in lifting Hall’s election victory five years ago to fill the one-year term on an interim seat, the county’s first Democratic Auditor in 71 years, according to a news release. Auditor Hall is again running for County Auditor and coming to Yelm to connect with the public,” by Nisqually Valley News, March 15, 2018.
Read more

Blogger Klein is a sponsor of Mary Hall’s Yelm event.

March 19, 2018

Spring officially arrives in Yelm Tuesday, March 20, 9:15am PDT

Spring Equinox, not to scale
Photo credit:

WHEN: Tuesday, March 20 at 9:15AM PDT
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March 18, 2018

Hooved Animal Rescue of Thurston County needs our help –
Hundreds of animals rescued from Tenino-area farm now in their care!

Click here to donate to Hooved Animal Rescue of Thurston County.

– “Non-profits step in after hundreds of animals rescued from farm near Tenino”
“Several non-profit groups have stepped in to help hundreds of animals that were recently rescued from a farm near Tenino.

Investigators in Thurston County say the conditions on the farm were some of the worst they’ve ever seen, a spokeswoman for the Thurston County Sheriff’s Office told KOMO News.”

Hooved Animal Rescue of Thurston County removed 1 full-size horse and 23 miniature horses from the farm, Patterson said. Goats, dogs, cats, rabbits, and several types of birds were also rescued, deputies said,” by KOMO TV 4 News Staff, Seattle.
Read more

March 18, 2018

A tribute to the late theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking –
Yelm resident met Hawking in 1993 during Seattle visit

“President Barack Obama talks with Hawking in the White House before a ceremony presenting him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom on 12 August 2009. The Medal of Freedom is America’s highest civilian honor. To Stephen’s right is his daughter Lucy Hawking.”
Photo credit: Pete Souza, White House Photostream

– Editor’s Note:
In 1988 when I moved to Yelm, I became totally enthralled with the then-just-published book by British physicist Stephen Hawking, A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes. This book rocketed to become one of the most popular science books of that era on cosmology (the study of the universe) written for a reader that had no prior knowledge of scientific theories. In the most simplest form, Hawking explained his concepts of theoretical physics in a manner that I, a businessman, could easily understand and get excited about embracing.

When I became aware that Hawking would be making a visit to Seattle in 1993 to give a single presentation of his work in the Seattle Center, I immediately called to get a seat (no online ability then existed to buy a ticket), which I was fortunate enough to obtain. Additionally, I bought a pass to a small post-talk gathering to meet the eminent physicist, which I was fortunate to be able to attend, one of the thrills of my lifetime. TIME Magazine highlighted Hawking’s visit to the Pacific Northwest 25 years ago in a story published February 3, 2014 (see first story below).

Hawking returned to Seattle again in 2012, his visit highlighted in this GeekWire story. Hawking’s early life was wonderfully presented in the 2014 award-winning movie, The Theory of Everything, worth a revisit now.

I salute Hawking’s single-minded focus above his human condition in expanding humanity’s understanding of reality!

These editorial cartoons brilliantly convey this writer’s sentiments on Hawking’s next adventure:
Click here by Glenn McCoy.
Click here by Kevin Siers, Charlotte (NC) Observer.

– “Hawking: Is He All He’s Cracked Up To Be?”
[Highlights Hawking’s 1993 visit to Seattle]
“And then there’s something that doesn’t make it into the film [Hawking, a moving new PBS documentary on the life and work of British physicist Stephen Hawking], but which I saw myself when I interviewed him in 1993. It was in Seattle, where he’d gone to give some talks, and his aide let it slip that whenever he traveled, he would ask his hosts to set up a meeting with local children with disabilities.

These visits were totally unpublicized, but I was lucky enough to go along and watch the pretty-great physicist answered questions from a half-dozen or so kids for an hour, their wheelchairs arrayed around his in a semicircle. That’s when I became convinced that even when you strip away the hype, Stephen Hawing may not be the world’s greatest living physicist—but he’s a pretty extraordinary human being,” by Michael D. Lemonick, TIME Magazine, February 3, 2014.
Read more

– “Stephen Hawking: The 60 Minutes interview”
“In 2003 the renowned physicist appeared on 60 Minutes in celebration of his 60th birthday—a milestone he never thought he’d reach”

“Stephen Hawking, a brilliant theoretical physicist whose ability to overcome a debilitating disease was as big a mystery as some of the enigmas of the cosmos, died Wednesday at age 76. In January 2003, Ed Bradley interviewed him for 60 Minutes on the occasion of Hawking’s 60th birthday—a true milestone for a man who had, to that point, cheated death for nearly four decades.

In the interview, Bradley asked Hawking about love, comparing him to Einstein (on whose birthday he died), and whether there was room for a God in his universe,” by CBS News.
Click here for the video.

– “How Stephen Hawking transformed the world of science”
“British physicist Stephen Hawking died at the age of 76. He was known as one of the world’s greatest minds. Here are just some of his biggest contributions to the science community.”
From NBC News, Mach.
Click here for the video and see Hawking float in zero-gravity flight in a NASA tribute.

– “What Stephen Hawking taught us about black holes”
“Turns out, black holes aren’t so black.”

“Hawking showed that black holes can actually shrink. The reason, he said, was that black holes shed particles and radiate energy — a phenomenon that came to be known as “Hawking radiation.” And this conclusion meant that rather than being voids producing nothing at all — as physicists had long thought — black holes actually glow.

”As Hawking himself put it, ‘black holes ain’t so black,’” Carroll says. “This was a stunning finding that surprised everybody, and we’re still trying to understand its implications.”
By David Cox, NBC News, Mach – Space.
Read more

March 18, 2018

Gov. Inslee signs Rep. Wilcox’s Bill combating farm worker suicides

Rep. JT Wilcox
Photo credit: WA. House Republicans

– “Legislature takes steps to combat suicide among farm workers”
“Agricultural workers have the highest suicide rate among all occupations; on average, 85 out of 100,000 workers in farming, fishing and forestry commit suicide, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

“That is why Rep. J.T. Wilcox, R-Yelm, introduced House Bill 2671, which addresses the need for better behavioral health resources for agricultural workers earlier this year. Gov. Jay Inslee signed the bill into law Thursday [March 16, 2018].

“‘I drafted this bill so they would know they’re not alone and don’t have to fight this battle by themselves,’ Wilcox said in a news release Thursday. ‘We are going to do whatever it takes to end this crisis and get these individuals the help they need,'” by Emily Goodell, Yakima Herald-Republic.
Read more

Click here for the news release from Rep. J. T. Wilcox.

March 18, 2018

With Spring beginning this week, “Time to Declutter”

Photo credit: Dr. Mercola.

– “Time to Declutter”
Story at-a-glance
* You may have a tendency to accumulate “things” as you travel through life, stuffing your home, office and computer with items and information you may not use for years, if at all

* Clutter is associated with a reduction in creativity and performance, and an increase in anxiety, stress and allergic reactions; decluttering your physical and digital life may reduce these symptoms

* By clearing out what you don’t need or use, and purchasing less of the same, you may also enjoy greater financial freedom and a sense of accomplishment

* Choosing quality items, pitching goods that have expired or are broken, giving away what you haven’t used in months and storing what you need in an organized fashion increases the likelihood you’ll experience the benefits of decluttering your life.

“According to The Minimalists, Joshua Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, minimalism is quite simply ‘a tool to rid yourself of life’s excess in favor of focusing on what’s important — so you can find happiness, fulfillment and freedom.’ Therefore, you define how much you want to live without and enjoy greater freedom. There are several psychological reasons to declutter your life and bring greater organization to the ‘stuff’ you continue to own, and simple strategies to make the process go smoothly,” by Dr. Mercola.
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