Heeding to the homeless Services for the homeless population in North Mason are few and far between By ARLA SHEPHARD On Sunday night, as the temperatures dropped to around 32 degrees Fahrenheit, a mother wrapped herself closer to her 14-year-old daughter. The two huddled on top of and underneath sleeping bags on an air mattress, shuffling closer to the propane heater at the side of the bed. They spent the night, as they had for the last three months, in a tent in the backyard of a friend’s home on private property within the woods of the Tahuya State Forest. The mother, Carol*, thought of her 16-year-old son in the next tent over. “It’s depressing, waking up and knowing your kids are staying in tents when you know they’re cold and should be staying in a house,” said Carol, whose children attend North Mason High School. “And here I am, doing everything I can to find a place to stay, and it’s not good enough.” Carol, 39, and her family are among North Mason’s elusive homeless population, which hasn’t been accurately counted in years
because there are no agencies that solely focus on their needs. The responsibility of looking after those that want services falls primarily to two women in the community — Karna Peck, a homeless advocate for the county, and Lyne Constantineau, an education advocate for the North Mason School District. The women essentially serve two separate populations — Peck helps those who are over 18 years old and have no children, while Constantineau works with families, like Carol’s, that include children in the school district. Both say that the need for more homeless services in Belfair is dire. “Right now, I have five families living in camps of some kind, nine families in trailers, three families living in garages, two families in sheds and the rest are living with family members,” said Constantineau, who has worked with about 34 families since July. “We still need more of the agencies to come to North Mason, we need to have someone for families … we have nothing to support those poor
A paid advertisement for my campaign that appeared in the October 14 edition of the Shelton-Mason County Journal contained a list of my supporters, but should not have included one of those names. The Journal’s Mary Duncan has not endorsed my candidacy, nor publicly supported it in any way. Mrs. Duncan is a neutral observer in her professional capacity as a reporter. The use of her name was unauthorized, and I regret the error. — Paid for by: Campaign Committee to Re-elect Pat Swartos, County Clerk (D) Treasurer Bellaine Ogden West • P.O. Box 264 • Shelton, WA 98584
Journal photos by Arla Shephard
Above, Carol, a homeless woman living outside of Belfair, sleeps in a two-person tent in her friend’s backyard with her 14-yearold daughter. At right, Carol and her daughter sleep on an air mattress and sleeping bags in a twoperson tent outside of Belfair in her friend’s backyard. Carol’s 16-year-old son sleeps in another tent a few feet away.
people.” Constantineau has been working with Carol for the last three months, scouring the area for three-bedroom homes or apartments in Carol’s price range. Last month, Carol went through $250 in gas, driving around Mason County in search of a place to live. “I have been looking and looking,” she said. “For the amount of rent I can afford, there is no place.” Up until recently, Carol and her children lived with Carol’s retired parents near Collins Lake. She had moved to the area in 2002, with her theneight-year-old son and sixyear-old daughter, after leaving behind an abusive husband in Spokane. She also has a 20-year-old son who lives with his father in Montana. Carol has been making ends meet through pay-
ments from child support and disability — both she and her daughter suffer seizures, and Carol takes 13 different medications for bone loss, migraines, asthma, depression and other illnesses. But after her younger brother and his now-eightmonths-pregnant wife and their three children needed a place to stay, Carol and her kids quickly moved out of her parent’s place. Since then, she has been looking for a new home, working with realtors from John L. Scott and Reid Real Estate. She found Constantineau a month after she’d
They Save Us — Let’s Save Them!
moved out, through a referral from the organization North Mason County Resource. “She’s been great, she helps me get stuff for the kids,” said Carol, who winces when she thinks of the $150 she paid in school supplies this year, dipping into her savings account. Constantineau advises her to find a place that costs around $800 or less a month, otherwise, if she lives beyond her means, she will be right back where she started. However, most threebedroom rentals in Mason County hover at around $900 to $1,000. “Here in North Mason, the rentals are expensive, and once we get them in the home, it’s to get them there sustainably,” Constantin-
eau said. “People, they don’t know how to budget money … they have to be able to sustain long-term.” Constantineau would like to see more low-income housing formed in North Mason, and Peck, the homeless advocate for Mason County, suggests more services like those offered in Shelton. “We don’t have a shelter. We don’t have showers. We don’t have a place for food distribution, aside from the churches and the food bank, which is not open when people need it,” said Peck, whose grant-funded position, through the county non-profit Mason Matters, ends in December. According to an answering machine message, the North Mason Food Bank is open Mondays and Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Wednesdays from 1 to 5:30 p.m. Since January, Peck has served 113 homeless people in North Mason, fulfilling needs like finding housing, jobs or medical or food assistance. She now works out of the North Mason County Resource building on Mondays and Wednesdays. “In 10 months, [I’ve seen] more than 11 people a month,” she said. “I think that’s way too many. Those are new people, and that’s kind of scary.” Carol worries about the toll homelessness has had on her kids, especially her 16-year-old son, whose grades have slipped from As and Bs last year to Fs this year. He has been caught fighting and has been bullied into drug dealing, Carol said. The only thing she can think to do, for the time being, is keep looking. “I think more people should be understanding of people who can’t afford places to rent,” she said. “Then, a lot of people like me who are homeless wouldn’t be in tents.” For information on services for the homeless, contact North Mason County Resource at 360-275-3652 and ask for Karna Peck. * Carol’s last name has been omitted to protect the identity of her children.
Shelton’s EMS levy is NOT a new tax.
District 1 Commissioner Public Utility District 3
It replaces the current levy—at the same rate—that expires this year.
Goals as commissioner • Listen to ratepayer concerns • Open meetings always • Seek honest “green power” • Emphasize power conservation • Protect the environment • Vigilant payroll oversight • Strict audit of $45 million Johns Prairie project
Firefighters not only fight fires, they also: > Respond to 911 emergency situations:
The levy helps with training so emergency responders are prepared to help in all emergency situations.
> Conduct public service work. > Inspect buildings. > Engage in emergency preparedness.
Integrity and Honesty A pledge of openness and transparency
> Respond to help YOU!
The levy helps maintain fire engines and other equipment needed for reliable help.
VOTE “YES” ON EMS
For more information about the levy, visit www.ci.shelton.wa.us Paid for by Committee for Yes on EMS • POB 1326, Belfair, WA 98528
“I intend to see to it that Public Utility District 3 operates out in the open. I want you, the owners of PUD 3, to once again have the certainty your electric utility is being managed to serve you and not being run for the selfish interests of its staff and management.” Paid for by Theresa Jacobson for PUD3 Commissioner P.O. Box 1657 • Shelton, WA 98584
Page A-2 - Shelton-Mason County Journal -Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010
This levy helps keep emergency response personnel on duty 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at the Shelton Fire Station .
Facts about Theresa Jacobson • Resident of Mason County for 19 years • Rural home in Agate area • Served on County Planning Commission • Active in Community and Civic Affairs • Prominent observer of county government • Experienced community organizer • Community service: Children’s Reading Programs in public library systems
In 2009, there were over 2,200 calls for emergency response in the City of Shelton.
Motor vehicle accidents Heart attacks Strokes Home accidents Patient lift assistance Other medical incidents. > Provide community and youth education.
Shelton-Mason County Journal
Serving the communities of Belfair, Allyn, Grapeview, Tahuya, Mason Lake, South Shore and Victor since 1969 • A section of the Shelton-Mason County Journal • Thursday, Nov. 11, 2010
Happy ending for homeless mother
Veterans helping veterans By ARLA SHEPHARD When Belfair’s American Legion post first emerged in North Mason three years ago, Steve Gadouas did not think there was a whole lot going on here. “To get or find any kind of services for veterans, an individual would have to go to Shelton or go to Bremerton, but there was nothing local,” said Gadouas, commander of American Legion Post 200 in Belfair. “But currently, there’s actually a lot of stuff going on.” The most significant change came this year, he said, when the North Mason County Resource building opened in Belfair and American Legion service officer Harry Tachell began helping veterans find housing, medical care and whatever other needs they might require. “If you were a homeless vet, then that’s where you’d want to go,” Gadouas said. “They get a lot of people there at that resource center, and it’s helped phenomenally for the veterans in the area.” While Tachell is scheduled to work once a week at the resource center, he has said that he regularly finds himself working multiple days a week to fulfill the needs he sees. “There are a lot more homeless veterans out there than you’d realize, mostly Vietnam vets,” Tachell told members of the North Mason Community Voice two weeks ago. “I see some vets with serious medical conditions.” Vietnam War veteran Max Loya isn’t surprised at the number of veterans in the area. “I don’t know about central and south Mason, but in North Mason there’s an awful lot of veterans,” he said. “A lot of them, they don’t want to be recognized. They just do their own thing and want to live their lives.” Loya remembers that there used to be a Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) post in Belfair when he moved to the area from Japan in 1989, but activity from that group dwindled away over the years. “Most of the members were World War II veterans, and as it happens, little by little, they passed away or some went into nursing homes,” he said. Loya, who served in the Korean War for three years in the Coast Guard and then tracked Russian submarines in a special branch of the Defense Department during the Vietnam War, prefers the quiet life now. He is not a member of the American Legion, because he doesn’t want to get involved in any more activities. “I’m just a homebody now,” he said. See Veterans on page BH-2
Journal photos by Arla Shephard
Carol Rutledge and her daughter Kira Randles, 14, play with Kira’s hamster, Siere, in the family’s new home in Belfair. Three weeks ago, Rutledge and her two teenage children were among North Mason’s homeless population and lived in tents in the backyard of a friend’s property.
With support from community members, a family finds a home By ARLA SHEPHARD As she stood in the front door of her new home in Belfair last week, Carol Rutledge remarked at how “crazy” everything had been for her family in the last week. Less than a month ago, Rutledge and her two teenage children
slept in tents in the backyard of a friend’s home in the remote woods of Tahuya State Forest, after Rutledge had to move the family out of her parents’ home near Collins Lake. Rutledge, a 39-year-old disabled woman, had been spending close to $300 a month over the last
four months as she combed Mason County for housing she could afford — highlighting the plight of many of North Mason’s homeless population, for whom affordable housing is few and far between. Now, with the help of realtor Mike Southerland and North Mason School District’s homeless advocate Lyne Constantineau, Rutledge and her family are sleeping soundly. “I never thought this would happen,” Rutledge said. “I never
expected anybody to be so nice.” Three weeks ago, Southerland of Reid Real Estate met with Rutledge for the first time, and shortly thereafter read an article about her situation in the Shelton-Mason County Journal. “I thought, ‘This can’t be the same person,’” said Southerland, who himself had grown up in poverty. “I hit the phone. I did not like the idea of two children sleeping in tents. I did not like that at all.” See Homeless on page BH-2
Renowned artist calls Grapeview home By ARLA SHEPHARD After spending so much of his life working tirelessly, John Hoover is finally showing signs of slowing down. The 91-year-old Alaska native, born to a Dutch father and Aleut-Russian mother, lives with his wife Mary in the same home he bought in 1974 for $22,000 in Grapeview. Their home overlooks Pickering Passage, and on most days, if he can get out of bed, Hoover spends them feeding the birds. “I like the quietude,” he said. “Nothing’s changed much here, it’s the same people. I like the weather because it’s always different — mostly sunny, but don’t tell anyone.” In the last three years, the artist’s life has changed dramatically. Whereas he once could spend days painting or sculpting, macular degeneration in his eyes has caused him to slowly go blind and he is increasingly hard of hearing. “I used to start an oil painting, and if it took 20 hours, it took 20 hours,” he said. “I was crazy. But it was all so easy.” Hoover grew up in Cordova, Alaska, where his artistic talents first emerged in the form of music, when he would play piano and write songs by ear with his siblings, and oil painting, which he began experimenting with in elementary school. Between the age of 7 and 14, Hoover fought in monthly boxing fights in Cordova, and took an extra year to finish high school because he would dig clams in the spring. Other odd jobs during and after high school included fishing, owning a taxicab stand, working as a carpenter and machinist’s helper and building his own boats. After serving in World War II (he was drafted at the age of 23 and served in the U.S. Army Transportation Service, eventually becoming a master sergeant on a 138-foot freight in Alaska), Hoover used the G.I. education bill to travel to Seattle for piano lessons and two months of dance lessons with Fred Astaire.
Journal photo by Arla Shephard
Faces appear in much of John Hoover’s wood carvings, representing spiritual figures in ancient Indian, Eskimo and Aleut folklore.
When he returned to Cordova, he began Edmonds, he studied under Northwest artist painting more in earnest, and in the early- Leon Derbyshire. 1950s, he not only produced more art pieces, In the 1960s, his art work shifted away from but a family as well — he married his first wife, oil painting to painting on wood to then carving Barbara McAllister, in 1946 and would have wood, invoking spiritual and mythic figures in five children with her. Aleut and other Northwest coast cultures, like For the next several years, Hoover would the Coast Salish and Tlingit and Haida Indian produce some of what he considers his best See Hoover on page BH-2 paintings, and when he moved the family to Thursday, Nov. 11, 2010 - Shelton-Mason County Journal - Page BH-1
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Ecology seeks comments on Kitsap landfill site By ARLA SHEPHARD About three miles north of Belfair, across from the Bremerton National Airport, the Olympic View Sanitary Landfill site sits unused since its closure in 2003. The 65-acre landfill went unregulated between 1963 and 1975, which led to groundwater contamination that exceeded state water quality standards for volatile organic compounds and metals — prompting investigations, lawsuits and studies in the early 2000s. Now, the state Department of Ecology is accepting public comments until November 29 on a new series of reports and action plans designed to start the cleanup efforts in earnest. “People who live in the area of a cleanup site have the right to be informed about what the agency is proposing for the site,” said Madeline Wall, Ecology site manager for the project. “We believe the proposed cleanup action plan is a good plan because it prevents the spread of groundwater contamination, reduces the contaminants over time and includes long-term groundwater monitoring to make sure the plan is working.” Ecology is seeking comments specifically on half a dozen documents, including draft remedial investigation and feasibility reports, a draft cleanup plan, a public participation plan and the State Environmental Policy Act environmental checklist and Determination of Non-
Significance. In 2001, Olympic View Sanitary Landfill, Inc. signed an agreed order with Ecology to carry out cleanup efforts; Ecology and the Kitsap County Health Department are regulating the project. According to the state law, the agencies responsible for toxic cleanup must first conduct initial investigations; assess the site’s hazard ranking; conduct a remedial investigation to determine the nature, extent and magnitude of contamination; come up with a feasibility study to identify cleanup alternatives; and develop an action plan to specify cleanup methods. The proposed cleanup actions include operating and maintaining existing source control and containment systems at the site, repairing and upgrading landfill systems and monitoring groundwater and soil gas. If 10 or more people request a public meeting during the 30-day comment period, Ecology will schedule a meeting. All of the draft documents can be viewed at the North Mason Timberland Library, the Port Orchard Branch of the Kitsap Regional Library, the Kitsap County Health District and the Northwest regional office of the Department of Ecology. The documents can also be viewed online at www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/tcp/ sites/olympicView/olympicview_hp.html
The Washington state Department of Ecology is seeking public comments for a series of reports and action plans for the cleanup of a Kitsap landfill three miles north of Belfair.
Chamber board candidates reflect membership growth outside North Mason By ARLA SHEPHARD
Hoover Continued from page BH-1 For the rest of his adult life, Hoover would create thousands upon thousands of pieces that draw inspiration from ancient Indian myths and legends. “No one else does work like him,” said Mary, who met John when they were both salmon fishers in Alaska in 1977, after he divorced his first wife. “You go to Santa Fe, Tucson, Phoenix, and it’s all cookie cutter. John has a very unique
style that no one else could do, it’d be copying.” Hoover’s work has been on display in museums and exhibitions all over the country, including the sculpture garden of the White House during the Clinton administration, but also his home now is where much of his art is on display. He misses the process of creating art, but when asked if he misses Alaska, he said, “Hell, no.” “I’m too old,” he said. “And it rains every day in Juneau.”
Who we are: Journal Telephone 426-4412 Herald Telephone 275-6680
POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Shelton-Mason Journal, P.O. Box 430, Shelton, WA 98584. Published weekly by Shelton-Mason County Journal, Inc. at 227 West Cota Street, Shelton, Washington. Contact by mail: P.O. Box 430, Shelton, WA 98584. Telephone us at 360-426-4412 . We’re on the web at www.masoncounty.com. E-mail us at email@example.com. Periodicals postage paid at Shelton, Washington. We’re a member of Washington Newspaper Publishers’ Association and North Mason County Chamber of Commerce. SUBSCRIPTION RATES: $37.00 per year in-county address, $51.00 per year in state of Washington $61.00 per year out of state Arla Shephard ... Reporter Jesse Mullen ... Editor Dave Pierik … Advertising Manager Mat Taylor … Advertising Representative Legals … firstname.lastname@example.org Press releases … email@example.com Deadline is 5pm Friday
Action, Anne Whitman of the Mary E. Theler Community Center and Sunshine Nance from Belfair’s Boxlight projector company. Candidates were chosen by the chamber’s nominating committee, but members could have nominated someone at the chamber’s membership luncheon last month. When Oldham called for nominations, no one responded. “The democratic process was served by going to the luncheon, where you can nominate yourself and you’re automatic on the list,” said Chamber President Mark Costa. “They are given the ability to thrown their hat in.” At last week’s regular meeting of the Port of Allyn board of commissioners, who collectively share membership to the chamber, the commissioners discussed the merits of voting for trustees outside of North Mason. “It surprises me,” said Commissioner Randy Neatherlin. “Why vote for [trustees] whose interest is bringing business out of North Mason?”
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The American Legion, which was founded by veterans returning from World War I, also works with veterans who need help with filling out paperwork for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. “It’s not uncommon at all, people coming in needing help,” Gadouas said. “They’ll need propane in the dead of winter or they’re having difficulty with an electric bill. Last winter, we had a veteran stuck here from New York, who had used up his gas money when his transmission broke, and we helped him out … When it comes to helping veterans there’s no geographic lines.” For information on services for veterans, call North Mason County Resource at 360-275-3652 and ask for Harry Tachell.
Southerland contacted Mark Drasbek, a client of his who had had his brand-new manufactured home on the market since the summer. The deal fell into place easily after that, he said. Drasbek agreed to rent the home to Rutledge for $800 a month. The low rental price allows Rutledge to live within her means — her fixed income is derived from both child support from an abusive husband and disability payments. Rutledge and her daughter both suffer seizures and various other ailments. Rutledge had been worried about the toll homelessness had been having on her children, which reflected in their slipping grades and increased fighting in school
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this year. According to Mason County’s most recent homeless count for 2010, 50 percent of homeless individuals in the county are children under 18. When Southerland called Rutledge with good news two weeks ago, she could hardly believe it. “He said, ‘I think we found you a home, but don’t tell your kids yet, I don’t want to get their hopes up,’” she said. “So we all drove down here and saw the house, and I was just totally amazed that it was ours. I was dumbfounded and shocked.” Southerland said he’s never had an experience quite like it in his career as a realtor. “We got to the house, and they got out, and I got teary eyed right there,” he said. “Those kids were like bulls in a china shop, they were all just wacko happy … to see the kids pick out their rooms was just really, really cool.”
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Page BH-2 - Belfair Herald section of the Shelton-Mason County Journal -Thursday, Nov. 11, 2010
BIANCHI’S BARK AND GRAVEL 10158
Journal photos by Arla Shephard
Aleut Native John Hoover, 91, settles before one example of his extensive wood carvings, in his home in Grapeview, where he moved to in 1974. Hoover’s oil paintings and sculptures have garnered national renown and were on display at the White House during the Clinton administration.
As the ballots for the 2011-2012 North Mason Chamber of Commerce trustee board went out to chamber members last week, some noticed a slight demographic shift on the slate this year. “Half of our members are out of North Mason, so we felt we should reflect that with trustees out of North Mason,” said Greg Oldham, chairman of the chamber’s nominating committee. “I hate to lose the people we had, but we wanted to represent our membership at large.” The new crop of candidates include several from Kitsap County, like Christine Case of the Port of Bremerton, Ryan Rydalch of Bremerton’s Hampton Inn & Suites, Annetta Knight from Bremerton’s Pacific Northwest Costume, Dawn Liebold from the Kitsap Sun and current trustee Rhonda Brown of Harrison Medical Center. Former board trustees not on the ballot this year include Kim Haack of the Belfair branch of the Kitsap Bank, Patti Kleist from the Belfair non-profit Faith in
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Journal Shelton-Mason County
Thursday, December 30, 2010
City talks garbage By NATALIE JOHNSON The Shelton City Commission reviewed several items of new business during their Monday study session. The first was a proposal to extend their contract with Mason County Garbage through to the end of 2011. The current contract is set to expire at midnight on December 31st. Since 2006, Mason County Garbage has been serving residential customers within the city of Shelton through this contract, and since 2009, that service has included recycling pickup as well. The commission is expected to approve the proposal in their consent agenda during their January 3rd meeting. The commission also reviewed an Interlocal Agreement between the city and Mason County regarding the Shoreline Master Plan update. The Mason County Commissioners signed the agreement on December 7. “In the end, city, county and Ecology staff agree that combining processes and resources during, at least, the initial stages of our respective Shoreline Master Program update processes would offer a number of efficiencies and minimize duplicative work efforts between the city and county that might act to confuse the public,” the brief states. The interlocal agreement basically states the city and the county will work together in the early stages of their Shoreline Master Program, including working together to hire a consultant. “The intent of the agreement is to allow the city and county to work together but, in the end, adopt separate but coordinated Shoreline Master Programs,” the brief states. The agreement will be on the commission’s See Garbage on page A-5
On the inside
Births Classifieds Community Calendar Crossword Entertainment/Dining Journal of Record Obituaries Opinions, Letters Sports Tides Weather
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Year 124 — Week 52 — 6 Sections — 38 Pages — Published in Shelton, Washington — $1
No Deal “... it’s a slap in the face for public power.”
Journal photo by Natalie Johnson
PUD 3 Commission Chair Linda Gott does not support the proposed settlement with Bonneville Power Administration.
PUD 3 vows to not support Bonneville settlement By NATALIE JOHNSON The long legal battle between public utility districts and the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) will likely continue for the foreseeable future, say PUD 3 officials, who have vowed not to accept BPA’s newest proposed legal settlement. “My personal preference is to not sign that settlement,” PUD 3 commission chair Linda Gott said. “When you weigh the pros and cons it’s a slap in the face for public power.”
Between 2002 and 2007, PUD 3 was overcharged $3,595,310 for their power rates through the residential exchange program. The residential exchange program, established by the Northwest Power Act in 1980, was designed to help even out the disparity in power rates between investor owned utilities (IOUs) and public utilities (PUDs). Basically, it allowed BPA to subsidize private power rates. Since 2000, PUD 3, along with the other public utility districts within the Washington Public
Agencies Group (WPAG), have been filing lawsuits against BPA, fighting against what they have argued are illegally inflated power rates. They say that these subsidies have been disproportionately high. The disparity in rates was originally caused by the preference that public utilities get over private utilities to buy cheap hydroelectric power. “If we cave to (this settlement) its history for the preference system,” Gott said. This settlement, according to
Putting the past behind them Boys & Girls Club brings out the best for once-homeless kids By ARLA SHEPHARD When Kira Randles, 14, talks about “the club cash” at the Boys & Girls Club, her whole face lights up. “There’s a kid in there with over $1,000 in club cash,” she said excitedly, holding up her fingers to indicate a particularly thick wad of fake money. “It’s my favorite. We get to clean and help out and we earn money to buy stuff like sodas, pop or stickers.” Since November, Randles and her brother Brandon, 16, have been regularly attending the North Mason branch of the Boys & Girls Club, where they’ve undergone what some have called a drastic transformation. At the beginning of the school year, as previously chronicled in the Shelton-Mason County Journal, the siblings lived in two tents with their mother, Carol Rutledge, on private property in the Tahuya State Forest. After three months of homelessness and frantic searching for a place within her family’s price range, Rutledge teamed with realtor Mike Southerland of Reid Real Estate to rent a
PUD officials, does little for public utilities, and a lot for Bonneville. “It’s a total of $1.35 billion that PUD’s are giving back that the courts said we’re entitled to,” Jay Himlie, PUD 3 power supply manger said. “And we guarantee them the highest level of payment they’ve ever gotten for 17 years for an agreement that might not be enforceable.” The settlement requires that all public utilities involved in the settlement must drop all their lawsuits against BPA, in addition to forfeiting the money Himlie mentioned. See PUD 3 on page A-5
Big bucks to bring in tourists By KEVAN MOORE
Journal photos by Arla Shephard
Brandon, 16, and Kira Randles, 14, spend some quality time together at their home in Belfair last month. The siblings, who lived in tents earlier this school year, have built confidence and social skills at the Boys & Girls Club. home on Rasor Road in Belfair. Since then, the Randles children have become more out-going, social and confident, especially at the Boys & Girls Club (B&G). “When they first started coming, they were very shy and off to the background,” said Christy Garner, program director at the North Mason branch. “I can’t stress enough the change in such a short amount of time, the increase in their confidence and the way they present themselves …
it’s rare that we don’t see that improvement, but if there was a fast track to success at the Boys & Girls Club, I would say they’re on it.” The siblings spend hours at the club after school, playing sports and video games before finishing their homework. Their grades have improved, as have their interactions with one another, and Brandon especially has started to bond with the staff members, See Past on page A-5
It wasn’t Christmas, it just felt like it on Tuesday as Mason County commissioners awarded over $100,000 lodging tax dollars to various local groups promoting tourism. The commissioners followed the recommendations of the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee for 2011 in both approving awards and denying them. In all, the board awarded $102,490 for the following tourism related events: Hood Canal Adventures — Geocache Bash $6,000; North Mason Chamber of Commerce — North Mason Visitor Information Center $35,000; Allyn Community Association — Allyn Days $5,000; Allyn Community Association — Allyn Geoduck Festival $2,000; Save Our County’s Kids — Old Time Fiddlers Fest $1,500; Kristmas Town Kiwanis — Bluegrass from the Forest $3,000; Mason Area Fair — Mason Area Fair $6,000; Shelton Mason County Chamber of Commerce — Shelton and Hoodsport Visitor Information Centers $38,990; North Mason Rotary — Taste of Hood Canal up to $5,000 ($2,000 for a one-day event or $5,000 for a two-day event). The commissioners denied funding requests from the South Mason Youth Soccer Association for the SMYSA Kickoff and Northwest Travel Deals for its Mason County Marketing Program.
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What is your New Year’s Resolution?
“Pay our bills.”
Past Continued from page A-1 Garner said. “Every single day he’s in my office, talking about his day or showing me the latest YouTube video,” she said. “The other day he came in for some help with filling out a job application. He’s really interested in helping his mom out, which is a really good step for him.” Rutledge, who supports her family through child support from an abusive exhusband and disability payments, became homeless in July, when her family needed to move out of her parents’ home near Lake Collins. Living without a roof over their heads took its toll on Brandon, said his mother, who noticed his grades slipping and an increase in his delinquent behavior while they were homeless. The change since then, over both her children, has been dramatic, Rutledge said. “Their social life has improved big time, and so has their attitude,” she said. “Brandon talks to his friends on the phone. The kids want to bring friends home … where we used to live, we had nobody. Now there’s a bunch of kids down the street.” Fifty percent of the homeless in Mason County are children under 18, according to the county’s most recent data from 2010.
PUD 3 Continued from page A-1 The settlement would also suspend the rate test until 2028, which determines the price PUDs pay to subsidize private utilities, which means that public utilities could not challenge that amount until then. “That’s a long time to not be able to address a topic that’s dear to us,” commissioner Bruce Jorgenson said. “I can’t see if there’s any con to not signing the thing.” Ninety-one percent of participants need to sign the settlement for it to be valid, Jorgenson said. Commissioner Tom Farmer agreed with his fellow commissioners, saying that he would fight the set-
“Maybe giving up these nasty cigarettes.”
“To lose 20 pounds.”
“To be a better person towards mankind. To be more generous.”
Many people don’t think of suburban or rural areas as being prone to the same kinds of social problems seen in the inner-city, said Garner, who grew up north of Atlanta. Her experience with the Randles children has shown her otherwise. “This situation opened my eyes to the needs around us,” she said. “I feel proud to be able to be a part of this. In the work that we do, we don’t necessarily get to see the evidence of our work, but in this instance I’ve been able to see that transformation right before my eyes.” In Brandon’s case, he’s become more motivated to finish his schoolwork and prefers to go to B&G after school rather than go home. He’s “not really sure” why he likes getting his work done now, but he enjoys things like playing the Nintendo Wii baseball, with which he says he can throw a ball at almost 100 miles an hour. “We have tournaments there, like with pool and ping-pong,” he said, his voice competing and blurring with his sister’s in excitement. “This one time I got hit in the chest with a ping-pong ball … I like staying there because it’s fun.” Kira Randles said she likes going to the club because she’s met new people. “I’ve met a lot of friends,” she said. “Heck, Luke didn’t like me and now he likes me. He talks to me in English when he used to ignore me.”
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Garbage Continued from page A-1 consent agenda for next week’s meeting. The city also authorized a transfer of funds from its general fund to its bond fund to support a December payment of their 1998 G.O Bond. This year, the bond fund was short by $2,127, according to a brief given to the commissioners, mostly because of a refund of property taxes to two local businesses. The city approved the transfer of funds.
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Baldo, Elvia, Mario
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• SKIL • MILWAUKEE • MAKITA • DEWALT
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UNION, HOOD CANAL High Tide
tlement. “I think it gives away way too much of public power,” he said. “I think we should act as quickly as we can so the PUDs that are waiting can see that Mason 3 is a leader in protecting preference.” Gott said that this is not an official position, but that she wanted to express the commission’s disapproval of the settlement. “I think we’re going to be fighting this as long as Steve Wright is administrator (of BPA),” she said. While they will continue to discuss the settlement, PUD 3 and other public utilities will most likely not support it. “There really is no downside to fighting this tooth and toenail,” Himlie said.
DEC 30-JAN 5
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•Housewares •Glassware •Pots & Pans •Bakeware
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TOO LATE TO CLASSIFY
TOO LATE TO CLASSIFY
APARTMENTS AVAILABLE now in downtown Shelton. 1 bedroom, 1 bath, $450-$500 monthly. Deposit required. Free water/sewer and trash. No pets, no smoking. 2 person max. occ. 360-427-6919. M12/30
LYNCH CoTTAGE. Recently updated 1 bedroom house on Lynch Rd. Perfect location 20 minutes to olympia and shorter distance to Shelton. Includes new flooring, new paint washer/ dryer hookups. Large covered patio, large fenced yard. Possible pet okay (only upon approval). water view and Christmas tree views. Cadet heat, no AC, no smoking. $650 plus $650 damage deposit with 1 year lease. Must have references. Available January 1. (Pet deposit additional.) Andy, 360-280-0606. A12/30-1/20
DowNTowN APARTMENT. Newly refinished 2 bedroom, 3/4 bath upstairs apartment in downtown Shelton. New carpet, new paint, new flooring, many more upgrades. Almost 900 square feet of private living with no noisy neighbors. walking distance to most downtown Shelton businesses. $700 month, $700 damage deposit with minimum 12 month lease. Rent also includes washer/dryer and water/ sewer/garbage paid. No pets, no smoking. Available now. Andy, 360-280-0606. A12/30-1/20
KITCHEN APPLIANCES. All white. All good working condition. Frigidaire side-by-side refrigerator with ice maker, $200. Maytag range with glass cooktop, $100. whirlpool dishwasher, $50. First $300 takes all. 360-
•Christmas Yard Decorations •Christmas Lights
• String Trimmers
by Black & Decker and Poulan
•Garden Hoses •Nursery Stock
• Bows •Ribbons • Tags •Wrapping Paper
First & Mill, Shelton 426-4373 or 426-2411 Monday-Saturday 8:00-6:00 M Sunday 9-5 8726
Joe and Krista Lisk
CLEAN SWEEP SALE!
Open New Year’s Day
Shelton-Mason County Journal - Thursday, Dec. 30, 2010 - Page A-5