Tax Preferences Hearing Comments

(updated with additional comments)

(Update 2 below the fold: 11 October 2011 meeting video embedded, and also more information about the Citizen Commission. Meeting video is also available at the Tax Preferences website.)

(update 3: just want to note that the Commission's work is to work with JLARC—the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee, and to compare and rate, and recommend and suggest various tax exemptions to the legislature, for the purpose of representing the citizenry's preferences.)

Comments at Citizen Commission for Performance Measurement of Tax Preferences Hearing

These are my comments from the Citizen Commission for Performance Measurement of Tax Preferences on Tuesday. I will add a link to the meeting video when it becomes available.

Additional comments: "Hog Fuel" is industry jargon for slash that results from clearcuts. When I went to an earlier commission a few weeks ago, this was a big topic, with industry advocates pushing for the tax exemption. I had to listen for a while before figuring out this didn't have anything to do with heating barns for pigs.

Additionally, a few things I had thought about, but didn't manage to remember to testify on during the hearing include: 1) the possibility that, if we are really concerned about job creation, then ending the practice of clear-cutting forests might help. That might have to be coupled with a dose of de-technologization. Selective harvesting of carefully chosen trees. Coupling trees to horses to pull them out of the forest, for instance. Or owners being willing to lower their margin of take-home cash, so as to ensure a responsible employment and environmental ethic.

2) I also spoke about productivity and merit and disparity in wealth. What I didn't mention is the problem of profiting from activities which have no merit. This includes both legal and illegal activities (like narco-trafficking, for example. By some estimates this illicit economy might account for $1 trillion annually.)

There are legal activities with dubious merit. Take the petroleum industry as an example. Petroleum extraction has enabled technological advancement. But for whom. And at what cost? —The petroleum industry, and other industries it has enabled (like the global military industrial complex, for example) have done tremendous harm to human cultures and to the planet. Look at the decimation of tribal societies. The meaningless consumerism. The pollution of the water, of the land, and of the air of this planet Earth. There are other industries that are harmful too. Petro-chemicals are not alone.

p.s. I suggest that the petro-chemical industry be nationalized. No one person, or group (e.g. the investor-class) should profit from industries that are harmful to everyone.

Also, think about legalization and regulation of the drug trade, to reduce violence associated with the illicit market.

The biomass battle is not over yet

Shelton Mayoral Candidate Dawn Pannell

               (Shelton Mayoral Candidate Dawn Pannelll)  

We are still fighting a planned 31 MW biomass incinerator on the Shelton waterfront.  Simpson/Green Diamond logging company wants to install this incinerator to run side by side with their existing incinerator.  Citizens have been attending City of Shelton Commission meetings every Monday night at 6pm in the Shelton Civic Center to voice their concerns.  Shelton is getting set to elect a new Mayor so this is a good time to voice our concerns.  Due to prevailing wind patterns, pollution emitted in Shelton blows over Olympia.

The original Shelton Blog was inspired by Oly Blog and we need contributors!


 (Mason County Resident Tom Davis speaks at the Shelton City Commission meeting"

Free Skool Olympia's February Calendar out now!

The newly revived and under new (no)management Free Skool Olympia has come out with its February calendar of classes!

Free Skool Olympia is an autonomous, all ages, egalitarian, volunteer-run collective which works to offer a wide range of workshops, classes, trainings, and skill shares freely to the community. The Free Skool offers a direct challenge to educational, economic, and social systems that oppress and divide our communities by providing vibrant alternatives to those systems and safe places for them to thrive so that we may begin to imagine and build a truly free world.

This month features classes on:

  • Algebra
  • Art and Activism
  • Book Binding
  • Computer Security
  •  Freestyle Rap
  • Haiku & Asian Poetry
  • History
  •  Knot Tying & Climbing
  • Media
  •  Musical Saw Playing
  •  Mycology
  •  Peace Psychology
  • Really Really Safe Sex
  • Self Defense
  • Sign Language
  • Stick 'N' Poke Tattoos

As well as a Black History Reading Group, White Privilege Reading Group, film showings, a Stitch 'N' Knit circle, and a Theatre of the Oppressed troupe!

All classes are absolutely free. The whole month's calendar, which includes descriptions, times, and locations is attached to this post!

Child care will be provided at classes on request. If you have child care or accessibility needs, contact the facilitator of the class you'd like to attend.

To find out more about the Free Skool, you can come to our general meetings every Sunday, 2:00pm at Media Island (816 Adams St. SE) or find us on Facebook. To contact us, e-mail olyfreeskool (at) riseup (dot) net

Olympia Climate Activists Hang Banners Against Biomass

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 25, 2010 Contact: Olympia, WA – On October 25, activists from Olympia Rising Tide hung two banners at the Evergreen State College in opposition to a proposed biomass gasification facility. Olympia Rising Tide opposes biomass because it is a false solution to climate change and would lead to a massive resurgence of clear-cut logging in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere. The Evergreen State College is considering a biomass gasification facility as a replacement for the current natural gas facility that heats the school. The Washington Department of Natural Resources claims that biomass is carbon-neutral because emissions from the gasification process contribute to the already cycling stock of carbon that is being exchanged between the biosphere and the atmosphere as part of the earth's carbon cycle. Using this logic, even burning coal is carbon-neutral because the emissions contribute to the already cycling stock of carbon. The biomass facility at Evergreen would supposedly only source slash (leftover scrap wood) from Forest Stewardship Council-certified small-scale woodlots. But Washington House Bill 2481 allows the Department of Natural Resources to create provisions in a biomass supply contract that are periodically adjusted for market conditions if the supplier invests over $50 million in the project. In other words, DNR can change the agreement to allow clearcuts if they are more economically feasible. This provides Evergreen with a back-door strategy to get the cheapest wood possible, no matter the environmental cost. The timber industry loves biomass because it could breathe new life into a failing market. With the housing slump limiting the options for selling wood, Big Timber sees biomass as the innovation that's going to save their bank accounts.

Protest Evergreen State College Biomass Incinerator

 Protest Biomass Incinerators!
Monday August 9th
-12 noon Percival’s landing, Olympia
-2 pm Red Square, Evergreen State College

Join us to protest the planned biomass incinerator for The Evergreen
State College. The facility will have serious effects on everyone in
the region. From toxic emissions at the stack to the decimation of our
forests there are countless reasons to oppose this project. This is a
family friendly event.

Biomass Protest in Shelton this Tuesday and every Tuesday

I seem to have more than one account here. Maybe this one will work better. We had a larger turn out for our protest in front of Duke / Areva /ADAGE today. Dr. Downing's office delivered water to all of us standing in the 80 degree heat. One of the participants was a 46 year old woman who had never attended a protest before. She had a lot of fun and you will too if you join us.

Two biomass incinerators are proposed for Shelton and one is proposed for TESC. The one at TESC is slightly different but it will still spread dioxins, fine particulate matter and other nasty stuff.

We will be there in front of Duke energy on Olympic Highway every Tuesday at noon until this boondoggle goes away. We also will be protesting at the Wal-Mart intersection at 6pm on July 29th and at Wallace Kneeland Park at 6pm on August 5th.

Incinerator Mass Protest at Duke / Areva / ADAGE new office in Shelton

WHY participate in demonstrations?
You can actively be with people with whom you share a point of view...

You can enjoy the feeling that you can have some influence, however small, in the world that makes it a better place...starting right here in your own back yard.

Participating in a demonstration is one of the highest forms of democracy in action.  It is following in the footsteps of the founders of this country.  It is service to humanity.  It is not treason.  It is not heresy.  It is not terrorism.  It is a legal right. It is an expression of truth. 

There are a lot of people that haven't come to even ONE of the demonstrations.  Perhaps this is because they have never previously participated in a demonstration.  If so, please DARE to CARE & come join your friends & experience at least ONE demonstration firsthand!

Everyone is cordially invited to welcome Adage to their new office at 1620 N Olympic Hwy  near downtown Shelton on Tuesday, July 13 at NOON.  You can catch a bus from Oly to Shelton for just $1.00 or you can carpool with your friends.

ADAGE aka Duke and Areva plans to build the largest wood incinerator in the country, in Shelton.  If built it will pollute the entire region with deadly fine particulate matter and dioxins.  For more information visit Incinerator free Mason County

Think globally, act locally!!!




There is a planned demonstration against the three biomass incineraters that are proposed for our region.  Two are proposed for Shelton and one is proposed for Olympia.  The Shelton Chamber of Commerce has been in support of the ADAGE incinertor and the 24 permanent jobs it will bring.



There will be a demonstration TUESDAY, JUNE 15 at HIGH NOON (until ?) at the
CHAMBER of COMMERCE OFFICE on RAILROAD, across from the P.O. in Shelton

This demonstration can have a BIG impact as the location is central, VERY
VISIBLE, and we have our friends at the C of C to entertain.

SOooooooooo. ....

*Tell all your friends through your medium of choice
*Invite co-workers to join you for a long lunch break
*Bring a sign if you can
*Invite strangers

But MOST important... ..BE THERE!

visit Incinerator Free Mason County to learn more about these incinerators

Two Biomass Incinerators Proposed for Shelton - Public Health Threatened - Puget Sound Clean-up Set Back

Two Biomass Incinerators Proposed for Shelton - Public Health Threatened - Puget Sound Clean-up Set Back

read more

Syndicate content