Page 4

Cowlitz Economic Development Council By Ted Sprague CEO

CEDC activities heat up for summer With more than $4 billion in capital investment projects working diligently to locate new jobs in Cowlitz County, the Cowlitz Economic Development Council (CEDC) is working to improve and diversify our local and regional economy. Current projects looking at our community represent a wide variety of industries, countries throughout Europe and Asia are looking to invest in the United States, and the innovations they bring would be welcome partners in our economy. Many are aware of the large capital investment projects looking at our area but most are not aware of the projects that fly under the radar. This happens for a variety of reasons. The largest reason is when companies are looking at our area; they are also looking at many other locations. We need to be able to put our best foot forward and show these companies that our location, workforce, environment and infrastructure is ideally suited for them. In some cases, we simply cannot compete due to our lack of incen-

tives or the widely held perception that Washington is not willing to permit manufacturing projects. This is an important point when people come to me about recruiting a Tesla plant or a solar manufacturer or cross laminated timber project. All of these companies have options. If we are not able to show industry, whether existing or ones we are recruiting, that they are welcome here – we will not win these projects. Washington state has one of the most rigorous permitting processes in the United States. As a lifelong citizen of Washington state, I appreciate that fact. A significant problem arises when the permitting process becomes so delayed and expensive companies of all types stop looking at our area as a viable place to do business. We at the CEDC are proud of our work with local companies, downtowns, workforce development, education and other partners to continue to improve and diversify the economy and better the way of life and quality of place for all who live here.

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Frank Panarra, President

Chris Bailey Lower Columbia College

Wendy Kosloski Teague's Interiors

Bianca Lemmons, Vice President

Clayton J. Bartness, DC Longview Chiropractic Clinic

Nancy Malone Mayor of Kelso

Neil Zick, Treasurer

Ken Botero Longview City Council

Bruce Pollock Bicoastal Media

Bob Crisman Gallery of Diamonds

Tom Rozwod NORPAC/Weyerhaeuser

Wendy Hutchinson Millennium Bulk Terminals

Ted Sprague Cowlitz Economic Development Council

Marlene Johanson Heritage Bank

Dennis Weber Cowlitz County Commissioner

Foster Farms

Cowlitz County Title Twin City Bank

Michael Claxton, Legal Counsel Walstead Mertsching

Nick Lemiere, Executive Board Edward Jones Chris Roewe, Executive Board Woodford Commercial Real Estate

4 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | July 2018

July 2018 Business Connections  

July 2018 Newsletter of the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce

July 2018 Business Connections  

July 2018 Newsletter of the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce