February 4, 2019
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Former Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown named to head Department of Commerce

Lisa Brown, a fixture in Spokane and Olympia, will be coming back to the west side of the state to lead the Washington State Department of Commerce.

Brown was a longtime member of the state Legislature, rising to serve as Senate Majority Leader. She went on to serve as chancellor of the Washington State University branch in Spokane. Last year, she ran for Congress.

Gov. Jay Inslee nominated Brown last week to serve as director of the Department of Commerce. She would replace longtime director Brian Bonlender, who stepped down to spend more time with his family.

Her appointment becomes effective Feb. 11.

“I am very excited about helping the Department of Commerce carry out its mission of strengthening communities,” Brown said. “Commerce plays a crucial role in the economic health and vitality of the state with initiatives around affordable housing, statewide broadband, green jobs and much more.”

The Seattle Times has more.

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Bridging the divide between Washington state and D.C.

By AWB President Kris Johnson

On a map, the distance from our Washington to the "other" Washington looks so far away. But, policies being made and debated there hit us here in Washington state.

Take trade policies, for example.

As one of the most trade-driven states in the nation, what happens with trade agreements has a direct impact on Washington state's economy.

A recent report found that Washington farmers and other export-dependent producers saw their foreign sales drop by as much as 28 percent during the six months after the United States began imposing tariffs on trading partners.

That's one reason why the Association of Washington Business and its members have become more engaged than ever on the national front. In fact, AWB staff and 25 business owners and leaders recently returned from the association's fifth D.C. Fly-in...

Read the full guest column in The Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business
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By The Tri-City Herald Editorial Board

Saying we don't need the four lower Snake River dams because they generate just a small percentage of the region's electricity is a bit like saying the Seattle Mariners don't need relief pitchers who are in the game for only an inning or two.

The dams, like a closing pitcher, are needed for their reliability and to fill in during critical times.

As lawmakers consider Gov. Jay Inslee's proposal to make Washington 100 percent carbon free, we hope they grasp the role hydropower plays in providing clean, renewable, low-cost power to the region

We also hope they come to understand the essential role the Snake River dams play in the power-generating system...

Read the full editorial in The Tri-City Herald
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