June 10, 2019
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Evening of Excellence and Manufacturing Excellence award nominations due by June 30



Among the annual highlights of the year for AWB is the chance to recognize and celebrate Washington employers. This year will mark the fourth year of AWB's Evening of Excellence competition and awards gala, held at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle. AWB will also continue its tradition of recognizing Washington's top manufacturers with the Manufacturing Excellence Awards, presented during the annual Manufacturing Week bus tour in October.

Employers are encouraged to self-nominate, or to nominate other businesses in the state that have shown excellence in any number of ways.

The Evening of Excellence Awards are given to categories that are inspired by AWB's mission and vision. They are:

  • Washington Achieve Award – Recognizing a business that has excelled in creating, implementing or supporting a high-caliber education and/or workforce development system aligned with closing the employment gap
  • Washington Connect Award – Recognizing a business whose products and/or services have positively impacted the way in which Washington employers and communities are connected to each other and the world
  • Leading Environmental Practices – Recognizing a business that has put a priority on environmental improvement, education or outreach to its business sector and/or community
  • Washington Advance Award – Recognizing a business that has had a significant impact in its sector, contributing to the advancement of its community and/or statewide economy
  • Entrepreneur of the Year – Given to an entrepreneur whose business is less than five years old and has made a significant impact in its industry
  • Employer of the Year – Recognizing an employer that has implemented innovative job retention, creation, benefits, and/or compensation plans that fosters a thriving work environment

The Manufacturing Excellence Awards are given in these categories:

  • Green Manufacturing Award — Given to a business that has maximized energy efficiency levels, gone above and beyond regulatory requirements, minimized waste from the production process and reduced its carbon footprint
  • Operational Excellence Award — Recognizing a company that has a distinctive manufacturing process, including continuous improvement, innovations, lean and six sigma and/or application of high technology
  • Innovation Award — Recognizing a company that has maintained a competitive advantage by utilizing innovation while remaining responsive to market demands
  • Manufacturer of the Year Award — This premier award recognizes a company that has a commitment to business excellence, has found creative solutions to challenges that raise or enhance the industry standard, as well as involvement in state and/or local public policy issues that affect manufacturers.

Take time now to nominate a business for these awards as AWB helps tell the many stories of Washington employers making a positive difference in their communities and our world.



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Housing Forum
Manufacturing Solutions


A way forward on immigration

By Edmund O. Schweitzer III and Jay Timmons

Manufacturers are in the business of building solutions. When we see a need to be filled or a problem to be solved, manufacturers go to work innovating and making the products that improve our daily lives. But we don't stop there. When we see our nation facing a challenge, we don't just call on our legislators to fix it; we also provide solutions.

That's exactly what manufacturers have done to help fix our nation's broken immigration system. Earlier this year, the National Association of Manufacturers released "A Way Forward," a plan for comprehensive immigration reform that bolsters border security while strengthening the economy and providing certainty for those immigrants who are anxious about their future...

Legislation soon up for a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives and similar bills recently introduced in the U.S. Senate would provide a solution for these two populations, and manufacturers are calling on Congress to act swiftly. While this is not a comprehensive solution, these bills are a way to move our nation one step closer to a more functional immigration system, and for that reason, they should command strong, bipartisan support. It is simply the right thing to do...

Read the full op-ed in The Spokesman-Review
Unsustainable Budget Growth


State budget growth puts Washington in tight spot during next downturn

By AWB President Kris Johnson

State government will spend more than $52.8 billion over the next two years. This is an increase of about 18.3 percent over the previous two-year budget and one of the biggest increases in the last 25 years.

It's true there are many competing demands for resources, but lawmakers had $5.6 billion more to work with, before raising taxes. Rather than look for cost savings, they chose to raise more than $1 billion in new taxes.

It's a safe bet that most Washington families and small businesses did not increase their spending by 18.3 percent this year. This pace of expansion is unsustainable. When the tax collections drop, that usually means painful budget cuts and more tax increases.

Lawmakers made progress on important issues this year, but it came at a high cost. As they work through the interim and prepare for the next budget, our hope is that lawmakers will tap the brakes and slow the growth in state spending.

Washington has enjoyed years of strong economic growth, but we need to be prepared for the next downturn.

Read the full op-ed in The Wenatchee World
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