Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: 'Economy' (124) Currently Viewing: 1 - 10 of 124

March 20, 2013 at 8:05pm

Got Happy?


The United Nations has declared today International Happiness Day. What a lovely United Nations. It has taken a break from the heavy drinking and comfortable airline seats to take a deep breath, look up at the sky and be grateful for the wonderful gift of life. Maybe the U.N. will nourish someone else's happiness with a loving word or kind gesture. In fact, research shows that simply smiling will release some of those happy hormones within you and make someone else feel better, too.

Speaking of happiness, have you taken the Tacoma Happiness Initiative Project's survey? The deadline is April 25 to be part of this first round of building the new economy of well being in Tacoma. Click here to participate.

Filed under: Community, Economy, Tacoma,

February 18, 2013 at 8:03am

Tacoma Economic Development Board's Excellent 10 list

MURRAY MORGAN BRIDGE: Will it make the Excellent 10 list?


Each year, the Tacoma-Pierce County Economic Development Board - EDB to the cool kids - gathers for its annual meeting, listens to a keynote speaker, trades economic related knock knock jokes and busts out its "Excellent 10" list. The list highlights 10 great projects or investments that bolstered the community in the past year.

"The nominees are chosen by a committee internally at the EDB," says Chris Green, one of the vice presidents at the EDB. "All nominations are evaluated on their impact and significance to the Pierce County economy and determined in advance of the annual meeting. The purpose of the list is to highlight the great projects and investments in our county over the past year that are laying the groundwork for more private sector job growth in Pierce County."

Along with the list, the annual meeting offers brief descriptions about each of the projects, just in case you weren't paying attention throughout the year.

Past makers of the list range across a wide swath of industries. In 2012, winners included everything from Downtown Tacoma's Redevelopment project to the Washington United Terminals at the Port of Tacoma to the JBLM Military Communities Project. In 2011, the brand new LeMay - America's Car Museum and Cheney Stadium's extensive upgrade made the list.

What will be on this year's list? No one except the EDB knows until the meeting. Deputy Mayor Marty Campbell, chair of the EDB, offers thoughts on what projects to keep an eye on for next year:

"From my point of view I see few key developments in Tacoma. 2014 should see the opening of McMenamins in the old Elks building. This and the completion of the Pacific Avenue Streetscape will revitalize the north end of downtown. More excitement will be coming for the point Ruston development in 2014 creating a great place to live, work and play."

Tickets to the event are a whopping $85 each and are available online. The annual meeting will take place Friday, March 1 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Greater Tacoma Convention and Trade Center. Kevin G. Hall, McClatchy's national economics and finance correspondent, will be the keynote speaker.

Filed under: Business, Economy, Community, Tacoma,

February 12, 2013 at 6:57am

Approve school improvement and safety upgrades in Tacoma and Puyallup

Photo courtesy of Renew Our Commitment - Yes on Prop 1/Facebook

Today, citizens of Tacoma and Puyallup will vote on $500 and $279.6 million school bonds, respectively, which seeks to renovate crumbling schools. Taxpayers would pay for the improvements with property taxes - about $58 a year for the 31-year payback in Tacoma and roughly $14.42 a month for every $200,000 of assessed value in Puyallup. If passed, the Tacoma School District will renovate 14 worn-out schools. In Puyallup, the money will be used to move kids out of portables, give them access to technology and expand or repair 11 schools.

The litany of problems facing our children and teachers every day is unbelievable: Leaky roofs, malfunctioning air conditioning, crumbling walls, wires hanging from the ceiling, poor lighting, classrooms that are too small, rats running through the ceiling and horrendous restrooms.

How do kids learn? How do teachers teach? It's been proven in study after study that poor conditions like these lead to kids underperforming academically, high absenteeism and a higher dropout rate.

It seems like a no-brainer. The repairs and improvements would create jobs and bolster the local economy and it's so obviously the responsible thing to do. Better schools will only raise property values, which will benefit even those homeowners who chose not to deal with dirty diapers. There are so many reasons why the two city capital improvement bond issues are a good idea. It's one of those rare opportunities where everyone can win - most importantly the children who so desperately need to make education a priority.

Voters have until 8 p.m. today to return their ballots to county drop boxes, or mailed ballots must have today's postmark.

Say yes to the future of our children and our cities.

LINK: Tacoma School District Prop 1 FAQ

LINK: Puyallup School District Bond Information

January 20, 2013 at 10:12am

Pierce Transit cuts will affect students


Friday, I caught the 400 Bus from Puyallup to Downtown Tacoma to meet with fellow Tacoma School of the Arts students. Besides the school, we share dependence on Pierce Transit. The topic of our roundtable was the defeat of the Prop 1 measure and the resulting outcomes.

"It is going to be a hassle for people trying to get to and from work," says Leah. "I work on the weekends."

The people around her nodded in agreement. A shared concern was the 34 percent reduction in service beginning in Septemeber, including the reduction of weekend Pierce Transit bus service.

"It is also hard for the disabled people who can't drive," Leah continued.

"What about the elderly?" asked another student. "Most just like to take the bus to the supermarket to shop on weekends."

Passengers aren't the only people affected by the defeat of Prop 1. Many Pierce Transit employees will be losing their jobs in September when the budget cuts go into effect. One student said, "If you know you won't have a job why work? I would just quit."

Sadly, that's the plan for many bus drivers.

My friend Emma McCrummen expressed her frustration about her bus being cut. "My route will be cut because of Prop. 1. My only way to downtown is gone. And that is a big issue - especially for SOTA and UWT students who live out of district, like myself. With the times changed and routes cut most students have no way to get to school on time."

As of now frustrated bus riders are complaining and trying to get the word out to find ways to lessen the oncoming blow.

A What's next for Transit? panel discussion will be held at noon Thursday, Jan. 24 inside the UWT Carwein Auditorium about the future of public transportation in Tacoma.

LINK: Hi, I'm Mckenna. I'm a student at the Tacoma School of the Arts. Thanks for following my Daily Trip

December 13, 2012 at 8:46am

IN THEIR WORDS: T.C. Broadnax's nine priorities for a better Tacoma


Tacoma City Manager T.C. Broadnax explains his vision and strategies for boosting Tacoma's growth in the Daily Journal of Commerce. Broadnax lists nine key priorities his Community and Economic Development team will concentrate on over the new five years, including downtown development and revitalization, light rail expansion and attracting foreign investment.

Broadnax tells the DJC he wants to create a positive environment for start-ups and small business to flourish.

While the city values all business, it embraces a proud heritage of promoting entrepreneurship. Working in partnership with local technical colleges, Tacoma offers an array of services to start-up and existing small businesses, such as business planning, marketing, site selection and other key elements to help grow and sustain our small business community.

According to his last statement in the DJC piece, Broadnax is confident Tacoma will become a city of opportunities.

Read his full report here.

October 7, 2012 at 3:50pm

Cuban Cultural Festival lights up Tacoma

Cuban Orquesta de Camara Concierto

From a press release received at Weekly Volcano headquarters:

A Cuban Cultural Festival will light up the University of Puget Sound campus this week, offering the public rare opportunities  to hear visiting Cuban orchestral musicians and to attend talks by Cuban scholars about the island’s culture.

From Monday, Oct. 8 to Thursday, Oct. 11 Puget Sound will host the festival’s visiting members of Orquesta de Cámara Concierto Sur (Concert Chamber Orchestra of the South). The talented musicians from Tacoma’s sister city Cienfuegos, Cuba, will present workshops and perform in a free 7:30 p.m. concert on Thursday, Oct. 11 in Schneebeck Concert Hall. The ensemble repertoire runs from Baroque to Renaissance to contemporary music, with an emphasis on preserving authentic Cuban music.

The Cuban musicians’ visit is a collaboration between Northwest Sinfonietta and University of Puget Sound, with funding from the college’s Catharine Gould Chism Fund.

Puget Sound will host four days of public events, including cultural talks and music, from Monday Oct. 8 to Thursday, Oct. 11. University of Washington Tacoma will hold a final concert on Saturday, Oct. 13. Full details are available at: www.northwestsinfonietta.org, www.pugetsound.edu/cubanfestival and www.tacoma.uw.edu/cubanconcert.

The public is invited to many of the free events at Puget Sound, including lectures on Cuban life, theater, literature, and entrepreneurship, and musical recitals and master classes involving the Cuban visitors and Puget Sound faculty and students. Tickets are not required and all are welcome to attend. For further details please visit: www.pugetsound.edu/cubanfestival

Monday, Oct. 8, 7–8:30 p.m.; School of Music, Room L1
Violin Master Class, hosted by Maria Sampen and presented by violinists Mónica Gonzáles Rodríguez, Oscar Rolando Piñero Rodríguez, Emiliya Victorovna Bondarenko, and/or José Antonio Díaz Adelit.

Tuesday, Oct. 9, 9–10:30 a.m.; School of Music, Room L6
Cello Master Class, hosted by David Requiro, and presented by Isabel Cristina Palli Puente.

Tuesday, Oct. 9, 12–12:50 p.m.; Noon Recital Hour; School of Music, Room L6
Cuban Popular Music, a recital hosted by Keith Ward, and presented by Tamara de la Caridad Codorniu Delgado.

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 4–5 p.m.; Wyatt Hall, Room 101
Cuban Reality During the Last Ten Years of the 20th Century as Seen Through the Writings of Abilio Estévez: a public lecture hosted by Monica DeHart and presented by Indira Rodriguez Ruiz.

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 5:15–6 p.m.; School of Music, Room 106
Piano Master Class: Cuban Music for Piano, hosted by Duane Hulbert and presented by Vivian Rodríguez Sánchez.

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 7–8:30 p.m.; Wheelock Student Center, Murray Board Room
The Founding of “El Monólogo en Cuba”: talk will focus on entrepreneurial issues in the founding of this organization; hosted by Lynnette Claire and presented by Miguel Rafael Cañellas Sueiras.

Thursday, Oct. 11, 7:30–9 p.m.; Schneebeck Concert Hall
Cuban and Classical Music by Orquesta de Cámara Concierto Sur (Concert Chamber Orchestra of the South).

The Orquesta de Cámara Concierto Sur is comprised of talented graduates of the Instituto Superior de Arte (National Art School) in Havana, and professors at the Benny Moré School of the Arts in Cienfuegos, Cuba. It is regarded by many as the finest orchestra in the region. The orchestra hosted a tour of Cuba by the Northwest Sinfonietta in January 2012.

The free public events on campus for the Cuban Cultural Festival are sponsored by the Catharine Gould Chism Fund, a resource endowed by Seattle businesswoman Catharine Gould Chism that supports the arts and humanities.

Press photos of Orquesta de Cámara Concierto can be downloaded from: www.pugetsound.edu/pressphotos

For directions and a map of the campus:www.pugetsound.edu/directions
For accessibility information please contact accessibility@pugetsound.edu or 253.879.3236.

Filed under: Tacoma, Community, Economy,

April 18, 2012 at 8:16am

MORNING SPEW: Cutting jobs, spending city money, painful cake video ...


Today In Oh This Is Quite Lovely: Team Dickwad hold South Tacoma woman at gunpoint, then ransack her home. (News Tribune)

Washington State Budget Cuts: And by cuts, we mean 1,266 more full-time jobs in state government. (News Tribune)

Tacoma City Council: It will grab money raised by 2009 and 2010 bond sales and spend it on theater, pool and bridge repairs, Hilltop public-housing renovations and walkways. (News Tribune)

Syrian Cease Fire: Not really a good thing as President Bashar al-Assad is tightening his grip on the country during the decrease in violence brought on by U.N. demands. (CNN)

The "Leap List": Ryan Leaf's list of things to do before possibly heading to prison. (Daily Weekly)

Creepy Finance Guy: He has spreadsheet of Match.com 'prospects.' (Jezebel)

Muppets Sequel: It will be a caper with new characters. (MTV)

Mission To Lars: New Metallica film to be released in June. (NME)

Fascinating: What it costs eight women writers to live in New York City. (The Awl)

April 6, 2012 at 7:25am

MORNING SPEW: Wacko from WACO, Ghost Ship, ‘Walking Dead Mad Men' ...


Big House On Campus: State House Democrats approved a $31.1 billion supplemental budget that avoids new cuts to K-12 schools or universities. The 54-43 vote went along party lines. (News Tribune)

Wacko From WACO: Robin Ann Chase, 44, was busted for stealing more than $73,000 from her former employer, the Olympia-based Washington Association of County Officials. (News Tribune)

State Supreme Court: It ruled warrantless searches violated Slippery Snapp's right to drive other people's identities around town under the state constitution. (News Tribune)

Washington State Lieutenant Governor Candidate Bill Finkbeiner: He wants Olympia lawmakers to ditch current seating practices and intermingle "We Are The World" style, if not alphabetical. (Daily Weekly)

Ghost Ship: No word if it was those pesky kids in the Mystery Machine van that tipped the U.S. Coast Guard, but a ghost ship set a sail during the Japanese tsunami was sunk due to the possible dangers that comes with unmanned ships floating around. (CNN)

U.S. Economy: The United States economy added a relatively weak 120,000 jobs in March, compared with 240,000 in February. (The New York Times)

Dating Advice From Charles Dickens: A "Manly Young Lady" and a "Poetical Young Gentleman" walk into a bar. (Brain Pickings)

Too Much?: Bacon taco shell. (Obvious Winner)

Walking Dead Mad Men: One awesome zombie ad agency mashup. (Huffington Post)

Some dogs Tryin' To Get Their Thuggish Ruggish Bones

March 26, 2012 at 9:16am

MORNING SPEW: Tacoma performance report, Wonder Woman Chucks, 'Mad Men' best lines ...

CHUCK TAYLORS: Walk in the shoes of a warrior princess.


City Of Tacoma Performance Report: Nuisance complaints are up, violent crime is down ... (Exit 133)

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke Speaks: The national economy will have to rev up more substantially for the unemployment rate to keep improving. (CNN)

Opinion: Jeffrey Toobin says a health care defeat could imperil President Obama's bid for re-election. (CNN)

Tweets Prove It: Rich guy James Cameron's voyage to the bottom of the sea. (Daily Weekly)

Do They Make You Tell The Truth?: Wonder Woman Chuck Taylor sneakers. (Wired)

Record Store Day: A list of the goods. (Pitchfork)

Mad Men: The best lines from last night. (Flavorwire)

Today In Kick Ass

March 23, 2012 at 7:20am

MORNING SPEW: Mo booze, city budget update, DJ Pizza Slut, celebrity tweets ...

FARMERSONLY.COM: They wouldn't be caught dead with "city folk."


Elwha Dam: It's so no there anymore, which is nice. (News Tribune)

Tacoma Budget Update: Labor union chats, tax measures votes and other option explorations have delayed city budget cuts. (News Trbune)

Mo Booze, Mo Booze, Mo Booze: California-based liquor retailer BevMo will arrive soon with a bevy of booze. (News Tribune)

Afghan Killings: Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales is expected to face 17 counts of murder today for his alleged role in the killings of Afghan villagers, a senior U.S. official said. (CNN)

A Broader Right To Council: The Supreme Court improved American justice by extending the guarantee of effective counsel in plea bargaining. (The New York Times)

The Office Might Shut Down: The boss steps down, and staff members are in limbo. (Deadline)

Hanging On: Third Hangover film will be the last. (Hollywood Reporter)

Chachi Update: Scott Baio At Nite. (Cinemablend)

Of Couse Yahoo Has This List: 25 essential punk albums. (Yahoo)

Old McDonald Had A Fling: Online dating site for farmers. (Time)

100 Best DJ Names: DJ House Smells of Rich Mahogany, DJ MAILER-DAEMON, DJ Adult Diaper, DJ Pizza Slut, DJ Side Boob ... (BuzzFeed)

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