November 25, 2014

City Council Public 2015 Budget Hearing Tonight:
Water/sewer tax increase proposal set for approval

Public Safety Building housing Council Chambers, Yelm

While the Yelm City Council lowered the property tax RATE by 1% on November 12th, the will vote tonight on amending the Yelm Municipal Code (YMC) to:
"Adopt Ordinance No. 991 amending the YMC, Chapter 3.42 Utility Tax which increases the rate imposed on Water, Sewer and Storm water Utility from 4% to 6% upon the sale, delivery, distribution or furnishing or water, sanitary sewerage collection and disposal services and storm drainage facilities."

The City Council will also hold a 2015 Budget Public Hearing tonight,
(Editor's note: interesting they schedule this before Thanksgiving, so expect none of the public to comment.):
Read more

Editor's Note:
The Yelm Community Center Bond was rejected twice in two different ballots, yet the city moved forward to obtain a county grant and using water/sewer reserves to construct the center, without public approval.

Do they have proper financial records checks and oversight in moving funds around on their books, as the State Auditor recently revealed was lacking.

November 24, 2014

Yelm Prairie Christian Center Food Bank Applications

The City of Yelm posted Public Notices for the following:

1. Yelm Prairie Christian Center Food Bank Operations
LOCATION: 501 103rd Avenue NE, Yelm, WA 98597

Notice of Application for Case #20140270, Yelm Prairie Christian Food Bank Operations.

An application by Yelm Prairie Christian Center, PO Box 578, Yelm, WA, 98597, for a site plan review and special use permit was received by the City of Yelm on October 27, 2014. The application was determined to be complete on November 4, 2014.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION: Conduct food bank operations from an existing 3,456 square foot storage building with 320 square feet of additional dry storage containers and refrigerated storage containers.
Read more

2. Yelm Prairie Christian Center Food Bank Distribution Warehouse
LOCATION: 907 Rhoton Road SE, Yelm WA 98597

Notice of Application for Case #20140269, Yelm Prairie Christian Food Distribution Warehouse.

An application by Yelm Prairie Christian Center, PO Box 578, Yelm, WA, 98597, for a site plan review and boundary line adjustment was received by the City of Yelm on October 27, 2014. The application was determined to be complete on November 13, 2014.

PROJECT DESCRIPTION: Construct a 23,760 square foot warehouse building along with associated office space, parking, loading and unloading, and stormwater facilities.
Read more

"Community Input Needed on Plastic Bag Ordinances"

"Online surveys for businesses and customers"

"Thurston County Solid Waste is seeking input on the bag ordinances that took effect July 1 in the cities of Tumwater, Olympia and Lacey, and the unincorporated areas of Thurston County."

"Complying with the new ordinances required some adjustments for both retailers and their customers. Thurston County Solid Waste staff is eager to get feedback on their experiences now that the plastic bag bans have been in place for more than four months. The information from the surveys will be included in a status report on the ordinances that's due in early 2015."

The two online surveys-one for retailers and one for customers-are available at

Read more

November 23, 2014

Everyone wants to know how to "Get a human"

- "Shortcuts to get a human operator"
"So what can you do to get through to someone who will help?

First, check a great website called "Get," ( which lists inside numbers at hundreds of companies.

Still no luck?

Then, take to social media: If you Tweet a company or post on their Facebook page, you may get results, fast. Companies monitor these sites, and don't want negative posts staying up unanswered," quoting John Matarese, KING 5 News.

November 22, 2014

Gov. Inslee says there will be action on oil trains

Gov. Jay Inslee

The number of oil trains running across Washington is unacceptable, and the Legislature will consider bills in the upcoming session that mandate advance notification of oil shipments by rail as well as more funding for railroad crossings and emergency response training, Gov. Jay Inslee said Friday.

"[He was] speaking to the Safe Energy Leadership Alliance that met Friday at Olympia City Hall to address the surge of oil and coal trains passing through Washington.

The alliance is a coalition of local, state and tribal leaders from the Northwest who say the trains threaten the environment, economy and public safety.

As shipments of oil increase in the Puget Sound region, so does the likelihood for spills and accidents."
"Between 11 and 16 trains pass through rural and suburban areas of Thurston and Pierce counties every week, according to reports from BNSF Railway."

'It is clear that we have to take significant action including being better prepared to handle an oil train explosion or large scale spill,' Inslee said.

Although the federal government is the main regulator of the railroads, Inslee said there are some actions the state can take now, such as lowering speed limits of the trains," quoting Andy Hobbs, The Olympian.
Read more

Editor's note:
BRAVO to Gov. Inslee continuing to take a stand on this important issue to us in rural Thurston County & statewide!

November 21, 2014

"Monsanto Vows to Challenge Maui GMO Moratorium" -
Protect your family, buy organic @ Yelm Co-op

"Keeping Market Shares by Force"

Monsanto, Pepsi, Kraft, and a collection of other pesticide producers and junk food manufacturers have poured over $100 million to defeat state and county initiatives to keep American consumers in the dark about genetically engineered (GE) ingredients in our food.

This is despite the fact that more than 60 other nations already require such labeling. It really goes to show that the entire business of chemical seed engineering depends on maintaining its stronghold over the American market.

Every fight these companies engage in against consumers is a loss for their brand regardless of outcome. What sense does it make to fight consumers for anti-transparency purposes?

Eventually, once awareness reaches a certain threshold, altered consumer preferences will start to choke GMOs out of the marketplace. The only questions are, how long will that take? And how much environmental and health harm will accrue in the meantime?

Chemical Technology Industry Aims to Remove Local and State Right

The GMA, whose 300-plus members include Monsanto, Coca-Cola, and General Mills, is pushing a Congressional bill called the "Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2014."8

The bill, dubbed the "DARK" (Denying Americans the Right to Know) Act, would actually preempt all states from passing GMO labeling laws.9 It would also bar states from enacting laws that make it illegal for food companies to misrepresent their products by labeling GE ingredients as "natural." The DARK Act would even limit the FDA's power to force food companies to disclose GE ingredients," by Dr. Mercola..
Read more

For all your organic quality foods, shop at the Yelm Co-op!

Yelm Food Co-op
308 Yelm Ave, E. @ Gordon's Garden Center
Yelm, WA. 98597
Phone: 360-400-2210
Read more from Facebook.

November 20, 2014

Drilling deeper into Yelm's aquifer may be dangerous

City of Yelm's 750' well drilled at end of Tahoma Blvd.
Photo copyright © 2010, Yelm Community Blog
Photo taken with zoom lens June 21, 2010.

- Is Yelm's groundwater being depleted?
Is drilling so deep (750') into the aquifer to more-than-double Yelm's water rights so the city can approve increased building permits wise? See the CBS News report from last Sunday below.
Read more

- "Depleting the water"
"Lesley Stahl reports on disturbing new evidence that our planet's groundwater is being pumped out much faster than it can be replenished"

"It's been said that the wars of the 21st century may well be fought over water. The Earth's population has more than doubled over the last 50 years and the demand for fresh water -- to drink and to grow food -- has surged along with it. But sources of water like rainfall, rivers, streams, reservoirs, certainly haven't doubled. So where is all that extra water coming from? More and more, it's being pumped out of the ground.

Water experts say groundwater is like a savings account -- something you draw on in times of need. But savings accounts need to be replenished, and there is new evidence that so much water is being taken out, much of the world is in danger of a groundwater overdraft."
Read more

November 19, 2014

A novel idea for citizen involvement -
Yelm is a long way from something so unique!

"The City That Gave Its Residents $3 Million"
"Then [Vallejo, CA. Councilwoman Marti] Brown]had an idea.

She’d read about an experiment in Brazil where a local government allowed its residents to suggest and vote on ideas for how to spend tax dollars. The process, with the clunky name Participatory Budgeting, allowed citizens, rather than politicians, to decide how to spend infrastructure dollars. Would this be a way, she wondered, of making sure Vallejo’s money would be spent in a way its residents liked?

'I thought, there’s got to be a better way to do budgeting, there needs to be more transparency,' she said, in an interview. 'It was a huge part of what helped propel Vallejo toward bankruptcy–that financial process is not a transparent process. The public doesn’t get to see it, they don’t know anything about it,'" quoting Alana Semuels, The Atlantic.
Read more

Editor's Note:
While way too progressive for this Yelm City Council, this IS an innovative idea that got citizens involved in their local government.

November 18, 2014

Yelm's Calli Hyder is National FFA winner

Calli Hyder - National Winner (1st place)
in Job Interview receiving her award with Yelm FFA Adviser Matt Mounts
and two national FFA officers. Photo courtesy: Yelm Community Schools

Yelm students impact National FFA Convention in Louisville, Ky.
"Congratulations to the following Yelm FFA students for their national accomplishments, including:
* Calli Hyder - National Winner (1st place) in Job Interview, who received a $1,000 cash scholarship.
* Top 10 Chapter in the Nation - Models of Excellence
* Top 10 Chapter in the Nation - Models of Innovation
* Students presenting: Chloe Riggins, Erin Smith, Casey Sowles and Taylor Koch
* Sheridan Lantz - national finalist in Goat Proficiency
* McKenzie Bateman and Kelley Quiroz - outstanding Agriscience projects
* Amanda Brown - chosen from among several hundred talented applicants to sing at a general session in front of a packed house of over 10,000 members.

Yelm Community Schools has the state's largest FFA chapter, in operation here for 75 years. Hyder is Yelm’s fifth national winner.
Click here for the National FFA Press Release.

November 17, 2014

Tied record low today for any November 17th

The National Weather Service recorded 18 degrees this morning at Olympia Regional Airport today, which tied the previous November 17th low of 18 degrees set in 1961.
Read more


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