November 16, 2017 Meeting Minutes

11/21/2017 14:02

SWONA,  Southwest Olympia Neighborhood Association

Quarterly Membership Meeting

Thursday, November 16, 2017


Held at: Gloria Dei Church

Time: 7:00 pm

Approximately 31 people present.



To save time, we just introduced ourselves to the person sitting next to us.


Treasurer’s report

Whitney Raines, SWONA Treasurer, reported the SWONA bank account balance to be at $516.

Proposal was placed before the members present to reimburse Dan Leahy for a portion of the expenses he has incurred in his work to oppose the "Wellington Heights" planned development in the area just south of Fern, Division, and Cushing Streets.




Disaster Preparedness

by Patrick Knouff, City of Olympia Emergency Management Specialist.

Patrick discussed the common hazards to be aware of in the case of natural or other disasters. His recommendations include having a 14-day supply of food, water and other essentials on hand. The most common injuries involve cuts to the feet (broken glass, etc.), so we are being advised to maintain a small emergency kit, including shoes and flashlight, under the bed. Patrick encouraged those present to get involved in Map Your Neighborhood workshops, which are block-by-block detailed emergency plans that can be put in place as soon as an emergency develops. Check the City of Olympia website for specifics. (


Citizen Action for Climate Change

by Bob Delastrada, Charlie Stephens, and Tom Crawford of the Thurston Climate Action Team.

The presentation focused on climate change and offered up thoughts on how individuals, cities and states can begin to reduce their greenhouse gas emmisions. Approximately 7,000 cities around the world have committed to this goal, including the City of Olympia.

However, the City's proposed 2018 budget contains no provision for taking steps toward this commitment. Strong community statements at City Council meetings are needed to get the City of Olympia to actually place a line item in the 2018 budget to fund the work of creating a climate action plan.

Those present were encouraged to attend the City's Public Hearing on the 2018 Preliminary Operating Budget on November 21 at 7:00 pm. Add your voice as a citizen and as a member of the Southwest neighborhood in favor of funding and creating a climate change action plan.


Resolution to Olympia City Council by the Members of SWONA

A formal objection to the proposed Wellington Heights development was presented by Phil Cornell. The development as currently planned consists of 56 single family homes and would cover the now vacant parcels directly south of the ends of Fern Street SW, Division Street SW, and Cushing Street SW. The language of the resolution is careful to state that the SWONA neighborhood is not opposed to a thoughtfully planned development that is consistent with the existing neighborhood and works to protect and enhance its liveability.

As part of the discussion, Karen Janowitz provided the group with information about the City's proposed Missing Middle strategy for increasing density while still enhanceing the overall character and walkability of neighborhoods.

The topic of increased traffic became part of the discussion, with speeding vehicles and stop sign running at the top of concerns. A group of neighbors on Milroy Street, in the block between Sixth and Eighth Streets are curently working with the City to get a traffic calming  device (possibly speed bump) installed. Anyone interested in joining in this effort, please contact Edith Reeves at

A vote on the Resolution was put forth to the SWONA membership. Vote outcome was 26 in favor of the resolution, 1 in opposition.

The resolution will be submitted to the Olympia City Council, Olympia Planning Commission and planning staff, developers Leung and Vo, landowner Willie, and to all local commercial banks that finance housing construction.


Meeting adjourned at 8:15 pm.

Next quarterly Membership meeting:  March 15, 2018

-submitted by Angela Rush, SWONA Secretary