Elma Lanes 1.13.16: 2016 will be a year of changes

Fred Rapp

In Grays Harbor County we have had the Legislative Kickoff sponsored by Greater Grays Harbor LLC. The featured item for the legislature is solving the McCleary Decision. This actually might even give us some relief in local taxes as the entire state has to fully fund basic education without any of our local levies. We, again, talked about trying to find a way to relieve our rate payers from having to buy expensive electric power when we don't need it. I 954 makes our PUD buy wind and solar power even though we don't need it. The law says that Hydropower is not "renewable" power. It seems if you tell a lie long enough it becomes true particularly if you get enough people to vote that it is true.

We have new Mayors in McCleary, Elma, Montesano, Aberdeen, Hoquiam, and Westport. We will see whether this change actually improves the way they use our tax money. The greatest change we could make in our county would be to help people find family wage jobs and relieve the pressure on our taxes.

Our schools are doing a good job and are turning out excellent young people. Elma schools decided, I believe in 1970, that we needed to emphasize vocational education and our students are bringing home awards each year through the Ag Dept. Kevin Acuff is working every day to improve the results. Our teachers work with the students from Kindergarten to high school seniors to help them be able to cope with living here. I wish more of our kids could stay here and find the jobs they need. If you have any great ideas to make local jobs possible, please let our leaders know your ideas.

The East County Rotary is into the planning stage for the 10th Pair of Hearts Ball. This one fund raiser has had a massive impact on our children who need help in coping with life. Angela Coulter, the director is planning a different program that will help us have even more happy customers. All East County Rotary members have tickets. They are only $40 each. This is one of the finest dinner dances and does a lot of good for all our county and doing good in Pacific County as well as some in Mason and Thurston counties.

Although Rotary gets a lot of credit for working on this, the local businesses in Elma and Montesano are extremely supportive. Without their support we couldn't have been so successful. By supporting these businesses, we are providing the funds they need to support great needs that are being served. If you would like to help make this program even more successful, please call me at 360 481 2842.

Thank you, Fred