Archive of: Thurston County

Title Issue

Back-to-school shopping weak

You may have noticed leafing through the weekend newspaper that back-to-school shopping, which is America's second largest buying season, is upon us. Americans tell pollsters that they begin purchasing school supplies three weeks to a month before the classroom bells ring. That would be right about now.

The bad news for merchants is that half of us plan to spend less than we did last year, and the majority will be hunting for sales more often, according to 2009 Back to School Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey conducted by BIGresearch for the National Retail Federation.

August 2009

State spotlights businesses

Secretary of State Sam Reed today launched a new recognition program called "Corporations for Communities," which puts a spotlight on standout businesses that make community a priority.

Starting this week, the public can go to the agency's Web site and nominate any Washington business that demonstrates a commitment to giving and a drive to improve local or regional social conditions.

"Running a corporation has to be about more than just profit - it has to be about corporate responsibility too," said Reed's Corporations Division Director Pam Floyd.

August 2009

Around the Sound

Early morning drivers in the Centralia area on Sunday will find rolling slowdowns on Interstate 5 with short-term delays between the US 12 and Mellen Street (mile posts 68 to 81). Delays should be expected between the hours of 4 a.m. and 7 a.m. Warning signs will be posted and motorists are reminded that all traffic fines are doubled within a construction work zone when workers are present.

Washington State Department of Agriculture is sponsoring free pesticide disposal events in Puyallup and Seattle in September. Deadline for signing up is Aug. 3. The waste pesticide collection for Puyallup will be on Sept. 2. To sign up, call (877) 301-4555 (toll free) or send an e-mail.

July 2009

More dam inspections promised

The Department of Ecology will inspect some dams more frequently and step up its efforts to identify and order repairs for unpermitted dams that may pose a risk of flooding to downstream homes. The emphasis follows a March 2006 failure of a dam in Hawaii that killed six persons.

The intensified DOE public safety campaign was funded by the 2009 Legislature, which authorized an increase in dam inspection fees to the owners of dams to pay for the equivalent of 1.5 additional dam inspectors in Ecology's Dam Safety Office. Existing staff in the Water Resources Program will be reassigned to carry out the additional inspection duties.

July 2009

Record heat set power marks, too

This week's heat wave in Western Washington broke both weather records and records for summertime electricity use by Puget Sound Energy customers. And while the sizzling temperatures put stress on the utility's electric equipment, PSE officials said recent investments in plant, equipment and staff allowed it to provide continued reliable service.

The private utility's nearly 1.1 million electric customers set new summer records for power consumption on three consecutive days beginning Monday, July 27 and continuing through Wednesday, July 29 as temperatures stayed in the mid 90s and above.

July 2009

South Sound loses Key influencer

KeyBank announced today that Thomas Spilman has been appointed president of its Colorado District. He will assume his new responsibilities immediately and transition to his new role over the next 30 days

"Leaving Tacoma," Spilman said, "will be the most difficult professional move in my career."

An external and internal search for his successor is under way.

July 2009

Workers here get premium pay

A new study by Bureau of Labor Statistics finds workers in all broad employment categories receive more in the Tacoma-Olympia-Seattle market than their counterparts in most of the country.

Based on July 2008 data, there is generally a 10 percent bonus in local paychecks when compared to similar jobs elsewhere, though the premium is 17 percent for the service sector and 16 percent in production positions.

July 2009

George goes 'Bing'

Suporting the "home team" favorite, the State of Washington has switched its public access Web site to the Bing search engine produced by Redmond-based Microsoft. It formerly utilized Google, a major competitor that happens to come from California.

Washingtonians (and all others) will now be able to find information located on the state Internet portal in less time and with greater accuracy, thanks to this new partnership between the State Department of Information Services and Microsoft Corp. And it comes at no costs to taxpayers.

July 2009

Audit firm to leave Venture

Venture Financial Group, holding company for Venture Bank, has notified federal securities regulators that its audit firm for at least the past three fiscal years, Moss Adams LLP, will not be continuing in 2009.

The regional accounting firm intends to complete its audit of financial reports for Venture through the first quarter of 2009 - activities that have not been finished due to complications from turmoil in the financial industry.

July 2009

Heritage posts loss from fees and lots

Heritage Financial Corp., has announced the Olympia-headquartered bank reported net income for the quarter was $91,000 compared to $1.8 million for the same quarter last year.

Including preferred stock dividends, the net loss to common shareholders for the quarter was $239,000, or 4 cents per diluted common share. The bank's balance sheet for the quarter was weighed down by Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. assessments totaling $751,000 that the government uses to prop up failing banks.

July 2009
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