KELA News Headlines for Thursday, May 26, 2016
Lewis County extends pot moratorium
Lewis County has extended the moratorium on the production, processing and retail sales of marijuana and related products in the unincorporated areas of the county for another six months. County Community Development Director Lee Napier says county staff has drafted regulations for pot businesses but have not finished reviewing them. The regulations deal with a variety of things including public safety, water and septic codes.The Lewis County Commissioners approved the extension by a unanimous vote on Monday. The moratorium was first passed by the Commissioners in December 2013.
Braun renews call for transparency in state worker talks
Closed-door negotiations began last week on state-worker contracts for the 2017-19 biennium and Senator John Braun of Centralia hopes it is the last time the talks will be kept out of public view. Braun says Washington does a better job that most states when it comes to open government. However the exemption of state employee collective bargaining from the Open Public Meetings Act is something that needs to be changed. He says the last time the contracts were negotiated it resulted in a 300-million dollar commitment from taxpayers without their consent.
Centralia College to continue "Getting Ahead"
Centralia College is going to be able to continue offering the “Getting Ahead” program through June 2017. Amanda Haines with the college says they teamed up with the Washington Department of Social and Health Services in Lewis County to offer the program for people in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program. Haines say the College has just completed the first year of the program as a pilot project through a grant from D.S.H.S.
Lewis County PUD Equal Payment Plan
Lewis County P.U.D. is extending the sign-up period for its Equal Payment Plan this year. The enrollment period is usually in April and May, but this year customers will have until the end of July to sign up. The plan is a way of balancing out a customer’s bill over the course of a year. Debbie Elizaga with P.U.D. says to qualify for the Equal Payment Plan a customer must have been with P.U.D. for at least 12 months at the same address. For more inforamtion on the Equal Payment Plan,contact Lewis County P.U.D.
Chehalis-Centralia steam train starts season
The overhaul of Engine #15 is complete and the regular season for the Chehalis-Centralia Railroad’s steam train begins on Saturday and will run through the end of September. According to the railroad’s website, they will again be offering trips from Chehalis to Milburn every Saturday and Sunday through August and Saturdays only through September. The trips to Ruth are Saturdays only. There are also special dinner trains and murder mystery trains on selected dates throughout the season.