“Swift and Certain” punishment model shines in Hoquiam City Jail

The Hoquiam City Jail is doing well, and after being closed for almost 10 years it could become a showcase for the State Department of Corrections. About 2 years ago, their “Swift and Certain” punishment model needed a jail for quick arrests and convictions of parole violators, instead of lengthy jail and court times. “From the street level, anecdotally I can that I think it works. I think it’s holding people accountable in a way that wasn’t working with the duration it took to get probation violators through the court system.” Police Chief Jeff Myers reported to the city council last night, “now they are proposing to extend the contract, which expires this year, out to 2017 and give us a maximum per diam of $85 per day per inmate.” The city jail was closed for almost 10 years before Myers was able to re-open it part-time in 2012. Later that year partnering with the DOC, he said the contract saves ratepayers. “The citizens of Hoquiam receive a fulltime functioning city jail for about .20 cents on the dollar because of this DOC contract.” For that Myers thanked Hoquiam Senator Jim Hargrove “Senator Hargrove was the main sponsor, he continues to ‘kick’ the DOC when they need to be ‘kicked’ and make sure things move forward, he’s a big proponent of this.” The “Swift and Certain” model received national attention earlier this year when President Barack Obama announced he wants to expand on similar programs.

Copalis Crossing Fire District 16 irons out payment plan for service-stopping city debt

COPALIS CROSSING, Wash. - The fire district that covers Copalis Crossing has reached a deal with the City of Hoquiam to pay off back bills and restore ambulance service to the North Grays Harbor area.

Commissioners from district 16 met with Hoquiam officials and representatives from Senator Jim Hargrove's office this week to iron out a payment plan for about $12-thousand owed. City Administrator Brian Shay tells us the arrangement should have them caught up within a year and a half. Shay commended the current leadership team of 16, and said that city staff are working on a new formal agreement to provide EMS service to the area.

Fire District 16 has two levies on the November ballot, one for EMS, and one for Fire.

Flood Authority funds Montesano project, “more to do” on three others

MONTESANO, Wash. - The Chehalis River Basin Flood Authority voted yesterday to shift about $4 million from three other projects to fund the Mary’s River Lumber project on the Chehalis River in Montesano.
It will help protect the sawmill, and the city's wastewater treatment plan across from State Route 107 from eroding riverbanks.
Flood Authority Chairwoman Vickie Raines proposes to move the money because pre-construction work has been done and the project is “shovel ready.”
The move pulls funding from the Satsop, Mill Creek and Wiskhah Road projects for the time being, Raines said this morning that they will move forward on the design and permitting stage for Wishkah and Cosmopolis projects to get them to shovel ready status.

Starlight Celebration reopens 7th Street Theatre Jan. 23

Grays Harbor’s historic 7th Street Theatre will present a Grand Reopening for the second year in a row, this time a “Starlight Celebration” on Saturday, January 23 at 7:30 p.m.
The free reopening celebration at the downtown Hoquiam theatre follows a three-month project of restoration of the curved plaster ceiling and embedded, lighted stars, in addition to the restoration of all ornamental plaster and walls. The work was done by EverGreene Architectural Arts of New York City, who have restored historic buildings all over the country from the Radio City Music Hall to the Grand Opera House in Meridian, Mississippi.
This reopening event follows by almost exactly a year the 2009 reopening, which took place after a closure for replacement of the stage rigging, seat restoration, and new stage curtain.