Thurston County Growth -- Yelm Meeting -- April 26, 2017

Thurstonn County Commissioner Gary Edwards and Jeremy Davis, Senior Planner in the County's long range planning department, were joined by 25 interested residents on the evening of April 26, 2017.  About half of the audience were League of Women Voters-Thurston County (LWV-TC) members.  Others, mostly residence of rural Thurston County, had heard about this general meeting on the radio, from friends, or by way of personal invitation.  The Mayor of Yelm, J W Foster, was in this last category.

The meeting cosisted mainly of Commissioner Edwards answering questions about the impact of growth on land use, water quality, housing, and the balance between protecting the public good and maintaining indiviual rights.  Although not "individuals," the needs of pocket gophers and salmon were also part of the discussion.  People were amazed to hear that the County population is expected to grow by over 100,000 in the next 20 years (check this site--  The importance of careful study, strong science, and innovation were all stressed as factors in searching for solutions. 

March 22, 2017 - Future of the Port of Olympia

Bonnie Knight, formerly the Executive Director from the Port of Allyn, provided a history of Ports in Washington. Her remarks were followed by presentations from EJ Zita, current Port of Olympia Commissioner, and Bob Jacobs, community activist. They focused on the potential and possibilities of the Port of Olympia.

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February 22, 2017 Hidden Impacts of Poverty

This presentation covered the hidden impacts of poverty including drivers’ insurance and licensing; barriers to successful reentry from incarceration, necessities that are not covered by food stamps and other daily challenges of people living in poverty.

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July 2016 - Candidate Forum: Commissioner of Public Lands

The Thurston County League of Women Voters and the League of women Voters of Washington, among others, are co-sponsoring a public forum for the Washington State Public Lands Commissioner on July 11, 2016 at 7 pm.

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April 2016 - Living Wage

The League of Women Voters of Thurston County's final general meeting for this program year will be a joint meeting with the League of Women Voters of Mason County. During this meeting, we will hear about a range of challenges faced by people in our community who have limited incomes. It is amazing how many aspects of "Economic Justice" have impacts on a low income person or family as they struggle to make ends meet.

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March 2016 - Homeless Issues

Thurston County has an ongoing challenge dealing with homelessness. Compassion and charity have never been enough to address the realities of our most vulnerable residents and although there are dedicated programs working hard every day to assist them it seems that we are making limited progress. This is in part due to the current economic reality, budget constraints and the lack of affordable housing.

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February 2016 - Tax Fairness

The issue of economic disparity has become a significant topic in our national conversation and is certainly playing a role in our election cycle. On February 25th, at Traditions, our League will welcome Wolfgang Opitz, Assistant State Treasurer, to discuss the issue of tax fairness, which is a critical component of this discussion.

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