City of Montesano Issues ‘Decision Letter’ on KD&S ‘Cease & Desist’ Appeal

There has been much fooforah surrounding a parcel of Montesano property located at S. 10th Street and W. Pioneer. Complaints about health, safety, and the environment have been raised. See: Mysterious Maladies in Monte?.  For additional background, see: What’s Up in Monte Today?

The City of Montesano recently issued a “Decision Letter” to the property owner, KD&S Environmental. Dated January 5, 2018, the letter is signed by Dan Wood in his capacity as Mayor Pro Tem. Obtained via public record request today, a copy of the letter appears below.

Here are the salient portions:

Based on the zoning of the parcels that are the subject of this decision, and the current use of those parcels, City staff has determined the current use of the parcels in question is not consistent with MMC 17.20. As such, you are hereby notified to cease and desist all non-conforming uses of the above referenced parcels no later than February 8, 2018. In addition, you must immediately cease any nuisances (such as noise and odor) that may be caused by non-conforming uses.

Wood notes that this action “specifically addresses compliance with the City zoning code,” and that complaints related to health, safety, and the environment “do not fall under the jurisdiction of the City zoning code.” He also points out that “many, if not all of the complaints have been investigated by applicable local and state agencies.”

Here’s the full text of the January 5 letter:

Dan Wood ‘Cease and Vacate’ Letter to KD&S – 05 January 2018, page 1

Dan Wood ‘Cease and Vacate’ Letter to KD&S – 05 January 2018, page 2

What say you?

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What’s Up in Monte Today?

Some Montesano residents are sounding the alarm over health concerns ostensibly related to a light industrial work site located near 10th Street and W. Pioneer Avenue. Whether or not cause for major alarm is warranted or the situation has been blown out of proportion (again) by a local blogger is open to question.

The site in question, lots on Wynoochee and Pioneer, is/are owned by KD&S Environmental. Neighbors within a two-block radius of the site are or have allegedly complained about a variety of mysterious illnesses. Symptoms include “Upper respiratory problems, severe congestion, spontaneous deep nose bleeding and more.” Also “Pets coming home with fur falling off and open sores.”

See: Frederiksen – Reading you in – 13 July 2017

Continue reading “What’s Up in Monte Today?”

Mysterious Maladies in Monte?

I recently received something related to “possible exposure of illness to a large group of children that attended the now closed day care center” in Montesano. Also possible stonewalling by the mayor’s office, et.al., on the subject. Per a December 29 email to Mayor Vini Samuel:

From: montesanotoday [mailto:montesanotoday@gmail.com]
Sent: Friday, December 29, 2017 7:48 AM
To: vsamuel@montesano.us
Cc: editor@thevidette.com; Doug Barker; …
Subject: Health of Children in Montesano

29 Dec 2017 Mayor – city of Montesano,  I am writing for the entire neighborhood.   I am not bothering to write your staff as they don’t return emails anymore on the subject.  They are waiting for your lead.   I and my neighbors have direct knowledge of the possible exposure of illness to a large group of children that attended the now closed day care center in our neighborhood.  As you know, we are at over 80% sickness rate here in our two neighborhoods with reported upper respiratory, digestive issues, and severe spontaneous deep nose bleeding.   Since they were part of our neighborhood it isn’t a stretch to think their parents might want to know.

Your city staff and departments refuses to notify the parents of those children.  I have been threatened in writing If I talk about what is going on.  Police report on file.

I have filed a request with both the DA office as well as the Sheriff Department to investigate and inform those parents.  Everyone points back and says that it is your responsibility.

When you took your oath of office you swore to look out for this town.   I assume that includes the children. We even have people that used to live in this neighborhood that have volunteered to come back over this.  As far away as New Mexico.   They both got sick too with the same things.

It is my understanding that you have recused yourself from our health issues.  If you have direct knowledge of what is making us sick or possible causes we ask you to tell us.  We need to know what to tell our doctors.  The parents of the children need to know as well.  None of us know if we are going to have long term health problems.

This is serious and it is starting to look like the city is hiding something.  What possible explanation would your city have for not telling us or the parents of those children and the surrounding neighborhoods?  Every single house has been in and out of doctor offices and emergency rooms.  Thousands and thousands of dollars.

There is sickness in your town and it appears that the city is doing everything they can to hush it up.

I was visiting one of my neighbors and let me tell you, I’m no doctor but I am extremely worried that he isn’t going to make it.  The County Health Department points back to you.

So tell me, what am I, we, supposed to do?  Cross our fingers and hope it just all goes away?   Just go to bed and forget about the kids of that daycare center?  None of us here are that callous.  Why are private citizens being put into this position?  This is your job. The media isn’t going to touch this and risk their access to you down the road.  You know that.

Do you really think I want to write letters like this?  I’m at the point where I don’t care about the retaliation anymore.  I have a sick wife upstairs over this and my neighbors are keeling over.

I have one neighbor ready to take out ads in the newspaper.  An entire section of your town is asking for your help and the City of Montesano is hiding behind closed doors afraid to talk about it.

End this.

PDF version:Health of Children in Montesano

In another missive* dated December 28, 2017, the same individual writes:

We don’t know if the sickness has spread,  as the city is trying to cover it up.  The newspaper won’t touch it as it would kill their access to public officials, you know how it works.  We know why.

Yes, we do:

 

 

 

* I have that email. And more. If you want ’em, holler.

Image credit: Flickr – CC

The Bunnies Are Coming! The Bunnies Are Coming!

Students at Grays Harbor College who are feeling a bit fluffed over final exams have a new way to cope: a Stress Less Fest. An “opportunity for students to relax before finals,” the November 29 event will include:

“bunnies to pet, adult coloring, hot chocolate and apple cider, and so much more!”

Does “more” include pony rides and free Warner Brothers cartoons? Askin’ for a friend.

Anyway, given the current political landscape, I have a few questions about this Stress Less Fest and its use of bunnies. In a day in which “higher education” has too often become little more than a Petri dish for Lefty lunacy, I’m wondering if the college has really thought this thing through? Just think of what could be in play when Flopsy, Mopsy, and Cottontail come hoppin’ down the GHC bunny trail. Like:

Continue reading “The Bunnies Are Coming! The Bunnies Are Coming!”

Remembering Ray Brown

Flannel-gray clouds piled up against the Grays Harbor horizon like pachyderms on parade. Rain sluiced out of the sky in sheets. Night quickly swaddled the 8th Street Ale House in sable. Inside, a select group of friends raised their glasses to Ray Brown, political activist, veteran, flier, and friend.

The November 15 Remembering Ray gathering was bittersweet. It included the shock and sadness of his November 4 passing. Also upbeat reminiscences of Ray’s wry wit, astute political observations and engagement, his naval service and love of aviation and good food. Memories wound around the table like bunting on a band stand. One attendee recalled his last lunch with Ray – spaghetti and garlic bread at the Montesano Senior Center last spring. Others recalled Ray’s support for numerous campaigns, candidates, and causes.

 

https://c2.staticflickr.com/4/3839/14974952510_673ed533af_b.jpg

 

Ray was born in Corvallis, Oregon.* His family moved to the Seattle area in 1962, settling in Des Moines, Washington. Music was a big part of his early life. He played drums in elementary school and was in a stage band at Pacific Junior High School. Ray was also active in stage, jazz, and marching bands at Mount Rainier High School. He participated in a drum and bugle baton corps marching band called the Seattle Ettes.

 

Image result for "mount rainier high school"
Mount Rainier High School – Wikimedia Commons.

Ray joined the Navy after graduating from high school. He attended nuclear power school in Idaho. He later served as an electrician on the USS Oriskany, an aircraft carrier. (Known as the Mighty O, the Oriskany was a Vietnam-era super carrier. It was decommissioned in 1976 and sunk off Pensacola, becoming the world’s largest artificial reef.)

 

https://i2.wp.com/www.urbanghostsmedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/uss-oriskany-abandoned-aircraft-carrier.jpg?resize=350%2C265&ssl=1
USS Oriskany

Following his naval service, Ray worked at the Lockheed and Todd shipyards on Harbour Island in Seattle. He later moved to Grays Harbor to work at the Westport shipyard.

Additional interests and activities included competing on a practical pistol team, crewing on a rowing team, and aviation. Ray was a private pilot and owned several airplanes.

Ray was also active in the Grays Harbor Republican Party. He attended his first GHRP meeting in 2006. He became a party stalwart, serving in a variety of capacities including Precinct Committee Officer, delegate to the WSRP state convention, and more recently, State Committeeman. Ray was a frequent, perceptive presence at numerous meetings for a wide variety of civic and governmental functions.

He will be missed.

You can read a bit more about Ray on Facebook. Ray’s wall includes a November 11 note from his younger brother, Kerry, with additional information.

Another celebration of Ray’s life is set for Tuesday, November 28 at 6:00 p.m. in the Ocean Palace banquet room, 112 E. Wishkah Street, Aberdeen.

 

 

 

*This is a revised, expanded version of the obituary yours truly wrote for The Daily World.

 

 

Plane image credit: Flickr

Oriskany image credit/U.S. Navy

Spaghetti image credit: Flickr

State Legislator$ Talk $, ‘Vexacious’ at County 

Money, money, money, money was a recurring theme at this afternoon’s Legislative Summit in Montesano. The 90-minute discussion touched on a wide range of local issues from capital budget requests (hi, third courtroom project) to “vexacious” public record requestors to unfunded mandates coming down from the state and smacking the stuffing out of small rural counties like Grays Harbor.

The meeting, which was cordial, included state legislators from the 19th and 24th legislative districts and Grays Harbor County Commissioners Wes Cormier, Vickie Raines, and Randy Ross.  Legislators in attendance were Sen. Kevin Van de Wege(D-19), Reps. Brian Blake (D-19), Mike Chapman (D-24), and Jim Walsh (R-19). Sen. Dean Takko and Rep. Steve Tharinger were not present.

Commissioner Cormier opened the discussion with introductions. He asked each legislator to give a quick one to two minute round up of their expectations for the next legislative session which begins in January.

Continue reading “State Legislator$ Talk $, ‘Vexacious’ at County “

Ballot Picks

Wikipedia Commons

Ballots are out. They’re hitting mail boxes countywide. Got mine today.

It’s a pretty short ballot. Several Advisory Votes. My rule of thumb on these puppies is two-fold:

  1. If said advisory vote includes the words “without a vote of the people” and it relates to a tax hike, I vote to Repeal.
  2. If the advisory vote has the words “for government spending,” I vote to Repeal.

So basically, my ballot looks like:

Other items include lots of candidates running unopposed. If said candidate is a Democrat, I either go write-in or leave it blank.

Also on my ballot: Port commish (unopposed), hospital district commissioners, one city council position (unopposed), and two school board slots.

Regarding the hospital district: I’m voting incumbents out. You can find out who they are here.

Aberdeen school board: Devin Backholm is the only solid candidate. 

The other races remaining on my ballot are for Hoquiam School District 28, Positions 4 and 5. Chris Eide is running unopposed. The other race I don’t have any strong feeling either way. Holler if you do.

Btw, what’s up with all these one-horse unopposed races?