News

The Chronicle - Centralia

Napavine to See $75,000 in Grant Money From Commerce to Address Housing Affordability

Washington’s supply and demand imbalance of housing of all kinds is playing out today in the affordable housing and homelessness crises in communities across the state. One study suggests the shortage is more than 225,000 units, according to a news release from the Department of Commerce.

To help communities address this growing challenge, Commerce this week announced $1.7 million in grants for 28 communities to develop housing action plans (HAP) or implement adopted HAP strategies to meet their housing needs. Of that, $75,000 will go to Napavine.

“This funding puts tools in the hands of community leaders to take steps to address housing capacity at the local level,” said Commerce Director Lisa Brown. “Planning for adequate affordable housing at all income levels strengthens communities and supports vibrant, equitable economies that allow more people to live and work where they want.”

The $1.7 million adds on to the first round of grants by the department that awarded 44 communities $3.5 million in November 2021.

The Legislature created the grant program in 2019 to help address the statewide housing affordability crisis and encourage local communities to prioritize creation of affordable, inclusive neighborhoods. Amendments to the Growth Management Act housing goal in 2021 now require communities to plan for and accommodate housing affordable to all economic segments, promote a variety of residential densities and housing types, and encourage preservation of existing housing stock.

Southwest Washington Airports Receive $1.39 Million in FAA Grants

Five grants from the Department of Transportation Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) totaling $1.39 million will help fund renovations for airports in Grays Harbor, Lewis and Clark counties, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell announced this week.

The FAA awarded more than $608 million in Airport Improvement Program (AIP) grants to airports across the country on Thursday.

Washington state airports received 29 grants totaling $38.68 million, the second-highest allocation to any one state. AIP grants fund airport infrastructure projects such as runways, taxiways, airport signage, airport lighting and airport markings.

“As we continue our pandemic recovery, more Washingtonians are taking to the skies and showing just how crucial it is to make investments now in our airport infrastructure to prepare for future growth,” Cantwell said. “This $38.68 million in airport infrastructure funding will play a vital role in maintaining Washington state’s airport conditions and increasing passenger capacity. These grants will help ensure that our airports grow in tandem with the regions they serve.”

In Grays Harbor County, $866,759 will go to Bowerman Airport to seal and repair cracks on 5,000 feet of the existing Runway 6/24 surface and existing parallel taxiway surface, and to install seven replacement airfield guidance sign fixtures to meet FAA standards.

Also, $180,000 will go to Ocean Shores Municipal Airport to remove airport tree and vegetation obstructions from the Runway 33 approach path.

In Lewis County, $100,000 will be awarded to Packwood Airport to update the airport master plan narrative report and layout plan to address key issues, objectives and goals pertinent to the facility’s future development.

Likewise, $100,000 will be allocated to Ed Carlson Memorial Field at the South Lewis County Airport for the same purposes.

In Clark County, $150,000 will go to Pearson Field Airport for the design phase of reconstructing the existing airport lighting vault, acquiring a new emergency generator to ensure electrical service to the airfield in the event of a power outage and reconstructing the existing Runway 8/26 edge lighting system to meet FAA standards.

Longtime Lewis County Superior Court Commissioner Tracy Mitchell Announces Retirement

After over 24 years on the bench in Lewis County Superior Court, Commissioner Tracy Mitchell will be retiring at the end of 2022, she announced last week.

“On Dec. 31, 2022, I will be ‘passing the baton,’ ‘throwing in the towel,’ ‘heading off into the sunset,’ etc.,” Mitchell stated in a news release announcing her retirement on May 10.

Lewis County Superior Court will put out a statewide job posting within the next month or so for Mitchell’s position.

“We will want to give the interviewing and selection process sufficient time for the appointee to transition from their current employer and/or close up their office,” stated Mitchell in the news release. “We are also seriously thinking of having the new court commissioner do some job shadowing/mentoring with me to see what the job entails besides just presiding over dockets.”

Mitchell encouraged all Lewis County Bar members to consider applying.

“If any of you want to talk to me on the ins and outs of the position, feel free to email me or call for a time to do so,” she said.

Mitchell was appointed as Lewis County Superior Court’s full-time constitutional court commissioner in 1998. She previously served as a pro-tem court commissioner from 1993 to 1998.

Mitchell graduated from St. Martin’s College, now St. Martin’s University, with a bachelor’s degree in 1978 and graduated from Washburn University of Topeka School of Law in 1983. She started a private practice that same year focusing on family, juvenile, real estate and personal injury law.

More information on Lewis County Superior Court can be found at https://lewiscountywa.gov/offices/superior-court/.

Lewis County Public Health Director JP Anderson to Resign

After three years as the director of Lewis County Public Health & Social Services (LCPHSS), JP Anderson is leaving for a position as the CEO of CHOICE Regional Health Network in Olympia.

Anderson has worked in Lewis County for over 16 years, he said on Facebook this week.

“As many of you have probably heard me say, this is my dream job, even on its hardest days. To all the people who have supported me and our team at LCPHSS over the past three years, I cannot express my gratitude enough,” he said.

CHOICE includes the Cascade Pacific Action Alliance (CPAA) which is the Accountable Community of Health (ACH) for Thurston, Mason, Lewis, Grays Harbor, Wahkiakum, Cowlitz and Pacific counties.

Anderson worked for the Lewis County Jail, Superior Court, Cascade Mental Health and at LCPHSS, saying the community welcomed him at all those positions, nurturing him and preparing him for the next challenge.

Debbie Campbell, former director of United Way of Lewis County, said to Anderson on Facebook: “You are a rockstar and you deserve the recognition and this new position because you are amazing, but you will be so missed. Thanks for changing lives in Lewis County.”

Death Notices: May 19, 2022

• LAURA LEE GUSTAFSON OLSON, 88, Centralia, died May 13 at her residence. Arrangements are under the care of Funeral Alternatives of Washington.

• MARY A. ROSENBAUM, 83, Chehalis, died May 16 at her residence. Arrangements are under the care of Cattermole Funeral Home.

Lewis County Commissioners Seek Volunteer for Public Facilities District Board

The Board of Lewis County Commissioners is looking for someone who would be willing to volunteer as the representative for District 1 on the Lewis County Public Facilities District (PFD) Board of Directors.

District 1 includes a large portion of northwestern Lewis County, including Centralia.

The PFD consists of five voting members and one non-voting member. The board meets at 10 a.m. on the second Tuesday of each month in Chehalis.

The individual selected for the position would serve through August 2026.

Applications are due by 3 p.m. Thursday, June 9.

If interested, applicants should submit their application and a letter of interest to the clerk of the Board of County Commissioners in one of the following three ways:

• By mail at 351 NW North St., Chehalis, WA 98532

• By email at committees@lewiscountywa.gov (Include PFD in the subject line)

• In person at the commissioners’ office in Room 210 of the Lewis County Courthouse at 351 NW North St. in Chehalis.

Applications are available online at https://lewiscountywa.gov/offices/commissioners/bocc-news/commissioners-seek-volunteer-to-represent-district-1-on-pfd/.

Seattle Times Politics

Blurry ballot barcodes delay key Oregon House primary results
Author: GILLIAN FLACCUS

Issues with counting ballots in Oregon’s third-largest county could delay for days a definitive result in a key U.S. House primary.
Oregon primaries set up competitive governor’s race
Author: SARA CLINE

Oregon’s November gubernatorial election, which is usually a one-sided victory for the Democratic party, is setting up to be a competitive and contentious three-way race.

Seattle Times Opinion

All hands on deck for ‘green corridor’ for cruise ships from Seattle to Alaska
Author: The Seattle Times editorial board

The designation would speed up deployment of zero greenhouse gas emission ships and operations between Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington.
A new era of Indigenous comanagement of the Bering Sea
Author: Marissa Merculieff

Deep in the Bering Sea on St. Paul Island, the Unangan want to establish the Pribilof Islands Marine Ecosystem Initiative.

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