April 18, 2016
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Election update: More candidates announce campaigns for statewide and legislative races

Sen. Steve Hobbs, D-Lake Stevens, officially announced his campaign for lieutenant governor last week, becoming the fourth Democrat to formally enter the race, alongside Sens. Cyrus Habib, of Bellevue; and Karen Fraser, of Olympia; and Rep. Jim Moeller, of Vancouver, who each began campaigning last fall. Three Republicans are also running: Phillip Yin, of Bellevue; Javier Figueroa, of University Place; and Marty McClendon, of Gig Harbor – The Herald covered their recent visit to Everett.

In legislative news:

  • Jon Wyss, the government affairs director for Gebbers Farms, will run to fill the Senate seat of retiring Sen. Linda Evans Parlette, R-Wenatchee. Wyss, the former chief deputy assessor for Spokane County, is a member of AWB’s Government Affairs Council. He also accepted AWB’s Community Service Award last year on behalf of Gebbers Farms for the company’s work fighting the Carlton Complex Fire.

  • Rep. Brad Hawkins, R-East Wenatchee, is also running for Parlette’s Senate seat. Hawkins is finishing his second term in the House. He has worked 15 years for the Douglas County PUD.

  • Steve Simmons, co-owner of the Country Gentleman restaurant, will run as a Republican against Rep. Larry Haler, R-Richland, in the 8th District. Simmons is a past member of AWB’s Board of Directors.

  • Retired Army colonel Rick Thomas is running as an “independent Republican” against incumbent Democratic Rep. David Sawyer of Parkland. Thomas commanded the 1st Special Forces Group based at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.


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Support Redevelopment to Create Jobs

Remove the barriers to prosperity

By Lee Newgent, Washington State Building & Construction Trades Council AFL-CIO; Larry Brown, Aerospace Machinists Union District Lodge 751; and Vince O'Halloran, Sailors' Union of the Pacific

Communities across our state are being rocked by the loss of jobs from closures of viable industry and manufacturing -- such as the Alcoa plant in Wenatchee. At the same time, we are facing extreme resistance to use or repurpose sites that have been closed, symptomatic of a growing and devastating "deindustrialization" sentiment. Examples include opposition to the proposal to use a former Alcoa plant for the Millennium Bulk Terminals project in Longview, and the proposal in Tacoma -- now on hold -- to convert a former aluminum smelter into a methanol refinery.

It's no secret that our regulatory process is broken. It has become so protracted and unpredictable that we are sending potential investors the unmistakable message that Washington is an inhospitable place to launch new industrial, energy and transportation facilities.

Each of these issues can and must be addressed immediately by state leaders.

Click here to read the full op-ed in The Wenatchee World
Sensible Savings

Even uncommon voices can find common ground on energy efficiency

By Ross Eisenberg of the National Association of Manufacturers and Kit Kennedy of the Natural Resources Defense Council

Washington, D.C., has earned a reputation in recent years as a city plagued by hyper-partisan gridlock. Yet our two organizations -- which often disagree -- have found common ground on energy efficiency. It's instructive to look at why both the National Association of Manufacturers and the Natural Resources Defense Council both support it.

It's simple, really: by building better buildings, making more innovative products, and using creative manufacturing processes, we can accomplish multiple goals -- reducing wasted resources, improving our electricity system, preventing more toxic pollution, reducing climate change, and fueling economic growth. Many new, innovative energy efficiency products and technologies are made right here by American manufacturers, creating jobs and economic growth across the nation.

Candidates aren't banging their fists on the lectern about energy efficiency. There are no big-budget commercials or fiery debates on TV. But that's not because the issue isn't important. Buildings consume approximately 40 percent of all the energy used in the United States. Improving energy efficiency of our buildings, and of the appliances and equipment inside them, is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to improve the environment, save money, combat global climate change, and stoke our economy...

Click here to read the full op-ed in The Hill
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