December 2021 Business Connection

Page 1

Business Connection Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce

Axecutioner is one of many local businesses the Chamber has helped target marketing

Kelso-Longview Chamber of Commerce Julie Rinard

Project Manager

k December 2021

Volume 13 • Issue 12 Business Connection is published monthly by the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce 105 N. Minor Road • Kelso, WA 98626


Let the Chamber help find, and hit, your target market

Bill Marcum, CEO Julie Rinard, Project Manager Pam Fierst, Office Manager Maxine Nightcourte, Social Media Service


ow will you reach your target market? We’re here to help.

Who do you need to attract to your business? Do you need customers to shop in your store, find you on social media, call you for an appointment or refer others to your product or service? Are you hosting an event? Planning a holiday special? We can help you reach your target market. From our e-blasts three times a week to ads in this newsletter and on our website, let us help you with a plan for advertising and marketing that fits your budget and returns results.


360-423-8400 To advertise, call Bill Marcum 360-423-8400 or Ad Deadline 20th of Each Month

Chamber Ambassadors bring out the celebratory red ribbon for new members, new locations, milestone anniversaries and expansions. Ribbon cutting photos run in The Daily News and they are announced on local radio stations. Do you need to reach the tourism market? We help about 15,000 visitors each year find what they are looking for. They ask about events and seek directions to points of interest, things to do, restaurants and lodging. The most common request is a street map of Longview and Kelso. Local residents contact us on behalf of their visiting friends and family members. We talk to people who are only passing through and refer them to restaurants, coffee shops, and places where they can find what they need during their visit. We give Chamber members unlimited referrals. Have you taken advantage of the racks for brochures and business cards at our offices? To be sure you are included, please contact us. The Visitor Guide and Chamber Directory is popular year-round with visitors, those moving to our community and local residents. If you would like Visitor Guides for your For more Help, see page 2

Help from page 1

business, come by the Chamber office or let us know and we will

Quarterly Membership Luncheon. Event sponsors receive

deliver some to you.

recognition for helping ensure that we are able to bring timely,

sQuatch Fest draws thousands of visitors from across the U.S. and Canada to hear and meet our world-class speakers. Visitors

relevant information to our entire business community. Watch announcements for Business After Hours, check

from 27 states attended sQuatch Fest in July! They are looking

the calendar for committee meetings and Lower Columbia

for hotel rooms and places to eat while they are here. During

Professionals’ events. Every Chamber event creates opportunities

sQuatch Fest, we often hear comments like “Next year, I’ll plan to

for you to talk with others about your business and make new

stay another day!” Would you like to reach this market? Contact


us about how to get your message to the sQuatch Fest crowd and we’ll work with you on a plan.

We’re here to provide resources to support your business success. Contact us about these and other opportunities that are available

Connect with other Chamber members at events like the


to you. We look forward to hearing from you!


Kelso Rotary Club in partnership with Cowlitz PUD invite you to enjoy KELSO ROTARY LIGHTS IN THE PARK spectacular lighted drive through display!

Drive Through Christmas Light Show Tam O'Shanter Park in Kelso December 16th - 23rd, 2021 5pm - 9pm (10pm Fri/Sat).

in the PARK

Presented in partnership with Cowlitz PUD

Club of Kelso

2 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

See a lighted Santa, penguins, elves, reindeer, snowmen, a nativity scene, angels and more. Suggested donation $5.00 per car with proceeds benefiting Cowlitz PUD Warm Neighbor Fund and Dolly Parton Imagination Library. Questions? Contact:

Thank you Sponsors: Cowlitz PUD, A&J Fencing, Canterbury Park, Cascade Eye Care, Catlin Properties, Child & Adolescent Clinic, D & C Lemmons LLC, Dick Hannah Dealerships, Ecological Land Services, Eureka Engineering, Express Employment Professionals, Frontier Rehabilitation, Futcher Group CPAs, Kalama Auto Supply & Repair, Kelso Business & Community Association, Kelso McDonald's, Life Mortgage Brittany Howells, Noelle McLean Attorney at Law, Pacific Northwest Realty Group Lance McDaniel, Red Canoe, Renaud Electric, State Farm Bob Beal, State Farm Jessica Wade, Rightline, The Pet Works, Tom Lee Attorney at Law.

Holiday Mixer 2021

Tuesday, December 14 Longview Country Club 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm


25 in ce advan



at the door

Ticket includes two beverages and delicious food from the Longview Country Club as well as entry into some great raffle prizes. Come and celebrate the holiday season with us! Register today at:

PRESENTED BY: Applied Applications Int’l


APRIL 2022 The Kelso Longview Chamber

and its Education Foundation along with every school district in Cowlitz County, including Wahkiakum School District, is planning a Job Shadow Day in April 2022. Our goal is to have over 100 businesses who agree to host one or more students at their business. Please click on the link below and help us with our planning as we attempt to help students become more aware of the career opportunities in our local communities.

105 Minor Rd, Kelso, WA 98626 360-423-8400 •

Cowlitz Economic Development Council Ted Sprague President

Manufacturing vital to COVID recovery


he last 21 months has been the most extraordinary time in my lifetime. Lockdowns, closures, vaccines, the Delta variant, a presidential election, grants, worker shortages and on and on and on. It has been a roller coaster ride that no one bought a ticket for. For this article I wanted to look back over the last year-plus and reveal some results done by Cowlitz Economic Development Council (CEDC) Vice President Lindsey Cope. When the pandemic first hit and businesses, especially those in the service and hospitality industries were being crushed by mandates, everyone knew something had to be done to save these companies. The CEDC was honored to be selected by several government partners and the Community Foundation of Southwest Washington (with the largest being Cowlitz County), to administer a wide variety of COVID relief grants. The grants were distributed to small businesses in Cowlitz County and all five municipalities. As you would think, most grants went to Longview businesses and followed a population trend from there. The results of the survey told a compelling story of how necessary

the grants were and how they were used. Most respondents, 58%, said the grant money saved their business from closure – 58%! As far as the spread of where grant money went, the leader at nearly 40% of the grants went to service oriented businesses. The second highest category was restaurant/bar companies at nearly 35%. Not surprisingly, retail was third at nearly 15%. Lindsey asked the grantees how the money was used, this question allowed for more than one answer as some businesses put the funds to several different needs. A full 76% of respondents used some of the money for lease/rent and utility payments. The second largest use at 64% of respondents was money was used to augment payroll to retain employees. Finally, the third largest response at 58% was more general – to keep from closing the business. We all can agree, I think, we need to find our new normal and hope our workforce shortages end, we tamp down the pandemic and we can all get back to our pre-pandemic lives. The CEDC was happy to play a role, with our partners, in helping the Cowlitz County economy stay on its feet during this unprecedented time.

Your Locally Owned and Operated Community Bank • Checking, Savings and CDs • Business Loans • Construction Loans • SBA Loans 729 Vandercook Way, Longview

(360) 414-4101

There’s a Difference. Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 5

Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors Chris Roewe, President Woodford Commercial Real Estate Lisa Straughan, President Elect Express Employment Professionals Frank Panarra, Past President Foster Farms Marlene Johanson, Vice President Heritage Bank Neil Zick, Treasurer Twin City Bank Michael Claxton, Legal Counsel Walstead Mertsching Duane Dalgleish Cowlitz PUD Rich Gushman Gibbs & Olson Keenan Harvey City Council, Kelso Wendy Kosloski Teague's Interiors Nick Lemiere Edward Jones Cherelle Montanye St. John/PeaceHealth John Paul KUKN-KLOG-101.5 The WAVE Bruce Pollock Bicoastal Media Tom Rozwood NORPAC Christine Schott City of Longview Councilmember Marc Silva Columbia Bank Ted Sprague Cowlitz Economic Development Council Michael Vorse Minuteman Press Dennis Weber Cowlitz County Commissioner

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce Bill Marcum CEO

As bad as 2021 was, we can celebrate our tenacity


hat a bizarre past 22 months. I know I don’t even need to say that, but it is hard not to look back in amazement at the difficulties our country, state and communities have had, and sadly it seems, will continue into at least the first quarter of 2022. If this column sounds familiar – like a repeat of last December – it is close... As a Chamber we have tried to keep you, our members, and the business community in general up to speed on the latest information available about the COVID-19 virus, the alphabet of financial opportunities like the PPP, EDIL, CARES funding, and SBA grants, and state grants and loans. Plus, all the safety issues and restrictions handed down by the governor and information from the groups working to help their members stay open like the retail association, hospitality association and Association of Washington Business, just to name a few. I get nearly 100 emails a day from state agencies, and the above-mentioned associations, all designed to help business meet, exceed and prosper during the restrictions placed on us. Joelle, and now Maxine, have done a great job getting this information out to you, along with information you, our members, have sent to us or posted on our Facebook page about your business. Julie, Amy and Pam have been in contact with many of you during the past 20-plus months asking how we can help your business, employees and customers. Helping you connect with other businesses who can also help with printing, personal protection equipment, hand sanitizer, take out products, tents and more to keep you moving forward. I want to extend a special thank you to the Cowlitz Economic Development Council (CEDC) and Ted and Lindsey for taking on the role of helping the county and the state get CARES Act funds to our local businesses. A huge undertaking, and still not complete as more funds could be released in 2022. Again, what a year. But I also want to give a HUGE shout out to all of you... our local businesses that have been incredibly creative, determined and above all committed to making your business successful considering the circumstances you faced. There are many forms of success and I’m not just speaking financial. Success includes keeping employees on the payroll, assisting them with unemployment if you could not keep them full time, helping other local businesses with support and then they are supporting you back. You banded together and the community said, “We will not let you down. We will support you during this economic crisis,” and they are. Thank you for keeping your doors open and having faith we all would come through. It’s not over, there is still much to do. Each business needs to help each other, and our community needs to continue to support our local businesses. It doesn’t matter what you might need, we need to find it locally from printing to automobiles, buy local. I have said this before and I will keep saying supporting local you keep businesses open, your neighbors and family members employed, and our local nonprofits funded to continue to help those less fortunate. To 2020 and 2021, good riddance! To 2022, here we come, ready to get back to the business of doing business.

6 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

2022 Friday, January 28, 4 pm - 8 pm Saturday, January 29, 10 am - 8 pm

Cowlitz County Event Center ✱ 1900 7th Ave., Longview WA

Don’t miss these presenters: ✱ David Paulides ✱ Ron Morehead ✱ Cliff Barackman

✱ Dr. Jeff Meldrum ✱ Shane Corson ✱ Host Craig Yahne

✱ Brew Mountain Beer Garden

✱ Themed Merchandise Vendors ✱ Food Carts ✱ Kids Cave


David Paulides

Dr. Jeff Meldrum

Ron Morehead

Shane Corson

Cliff Barackman

Tickets available at:

For more information, call (360) 423-8400

Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments Bill Fashing CEO

Broadband funding opportunities abound, but improvements will take time


he region is challenged from one end to the other with access to broadband. Some households face financial challenges is obtaining true broadband while others face the challenge of availability. This scenario is apparent in most communities across the country with varying degrees of the two major factors. With this challenge in mind the state and federal governments have been working toward solutions and putting direct funding into the mix. During the pandemic, we have learned how unprepared our region is to support remote work, distance learning and telemedicine let alone streaming multiple movies in our households at the same time. The private sector has failed to meet the demand and in some cases is now working to invest in the system based on their ability to obtain the rates of returns they require. Getting the broadband needed for today’s world will take a significant and focused investment from the public sector. This investment will need to come with ties to make sure we see progress resulting from the funding. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) alone sets out $65 billion for broadband. These funds are in addition to state and other federal programs that have been funded at record levels over the duration of the pandemic.

Broadband Grant Application Geography Source: Petrichor Broadband

In our region, The Broadband Action Team efforts have focused on areas historically served by Century Link. This is a significant area in Cowlitz County and the service areas outside of the cities are not adequately served today. There are two outstanding grant requests that we hope to hear positive results on in the coming months. The Port of Kalama has taken the lead on both opportunities in cooperation with Wave Broadband. The project areas are in the Eufaula area (northwest of Longview) and the Toutle/Kid Valley area. These proposals are first steps and will serve the residents within these areas but will also make it easier to expand outward from these points. There are other organizations including Kalama Tel and the Port of Woodland that are also pursuing broadband investments currently. These two Port of Kalama projects will provide service to approximately 670 households in the county. Wave Communications has partnered with the Port of Kalama and will be making infrastructure investments if the grant requests are successful. The built-out network will be open, meaning that other internet service providers will also be able to provide customer services at a level of 100 mbps download and 25 mbps upload speeds. Speed test results are crucial aspects of the community efforts 8 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

Broadband Grant Application Geography Source: Petrichor Broadband

to broaden access and area residents should take at least one of the speed tests included in this article to help document the need for investment in our community. Because of the historical way the federal government determined whether an area is served by broadband, much of the county is misclassified as having For more CWCOG, see page 9

CWCOG from page 8

adequate broadband. The use of speed tests can help to prove the existing need for broadband investment. You can access speed tests at these two sites. Please take both speed tests and encourage your friends, neighbors and coworkers to do the same. Washington Department of Commerce – https://www.commerce. Ookla Speed Test – As mentioned earlier, the new Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act includes $65 billion in broadband investments. The COVID-19 pandemic made clear that affordable, reliable broadband is required for modern life, but many have understood these issues for some time. The 2018-2023 Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy includes goals related to the needed investment. The influx of funds to address this critical infrastructure need should assist in moving improvements forward but it will take time. Although much of the IIJA funding will be directed through the states, some will be sent to the U.S. Department of Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications Information Agency (NTIA) and other federal agencies to strengthen existing initiatives. One new federal program is the Affordable Connectivity Program,

which will replace the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program. The existing program works to support affordable services for those in need. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is seeking comment on the program currently. Addition information can be found at the FCC website. This program will help many in the region to obtain broadband services when the major deterrent to service is financial. About the CWCOG The CWCOG is a governmental planning and services agency composed of local governments in southwest Washington state. Its Board of Directors consists of representatives from Cowlitz and Wahkiakum counties, but the organization serves throughout the region including Grays Harbor, Lewis and Pacific counties as well as Rainier, Ore. It provides a forum for members to work together on issues with crossing jurisdictional lines and creating cooperative solutions. In addition, the agency provides planning, technical assistance, and grant resources in the areas of transportation and economic development, contracts to provide long-range community development planning, and coordinates insurance pooling to select members.

Consistent Courteous Complete Title and Escrow Services Warmest wishes from our family to yours. When banks and neighbors work together, great communities grow stronger. Learn about

our commitment to serve at

1425 Maple Street • Longview, WA 98632

360.425.2950 | 800.455.6126 |

Equal Housing Lender | Member FDIC

Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 9

Business Toolbox Jerry D. Petrick

Certified Business Adviser

Helpful info going into the new year


his issue I wanted to pull together some helpful updates/ tips for you to be aware of as we head into the new year. Below is a collection of topics for you to consider.

WA Cares Fund: Premium collection and wage reporting Beginning Jan. 1, 2022, employers collect WA Cares premiums from employees the same way it’s done now for paid leave–we’re updating the paid leave reporting system on our end to report for both programs at the same time. Employers won’t pay any share of these contributions for their employees. Updated reporting resources coming soon. We’re updating the wage reporting resources on so you have everything you need to file for Quarter 1 (Q1) in 2022. Visit to learn about the benefit and what to expect. Pandemic financial relief winding down Federal relief programs for small businesses are slowly coming to an end, and with only a few months left in the year, Venturize offers a short list of resources that may have already expired or are about to expire. Learn more… True loyalty rewards for restaurants comes via texting Forget loyalty programs–the true measure of customer fealty comes from exchanging text messages. That’s the main point of a multi-year survey of restaurants and patrons by customer relationship management platform Mobivity. Its 2021 Restaurant Text Marketing Benchmarks report shows a 44% lift in restaurant visits among text marketing subscribers (those who share their mobile numbers with restaurants they’ve been to) vs. nonsubscribers. Mobivity’s report encompasses 15 million subscribers and 500 million transactions between 2018 and 2021. Find more here… Are you being approached by a predatory lender? Lenders know that many businesses are searching for additional capital to survive the impacts of the pandemic. Over the past 18 months, we’ve offered links to many sources of pandemic financial relief. Unfortunately, there are sources of financing that are not a good fit for most small business needs, in part because of the terms of the financing and the costs of borrowing. Some lenders operate so far outside the lines that the U.S. 10 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

Department of Justice has come to call certain lending practices predatory. Check out the document in the link below and use the predatory lending checklist to evaluate offers that come your way. Learn more here… REMINDER! If your work includes plumbing, there are major rule changes you must know These changes are already in effect and have an impact on anyone who uses plumbers in any of their work. For more information about the new plumbing requirements and to download the application, go to the New Plumbing Licensing Requirements page. For questions, contact the L&I Plumbing Certification Program at the L&I Plumber Certification mailbox or call 360-902-5207. L&I’s Employer Assistance Program (EAP) helps businesses impacted by COVID-19 Any business that has been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic may qualify for the Employer Assistance Program and arrange a payment plan for their workers’ compensation premium. Businesses can request their payment be deferred for up to 90 days or ask for a 90-day payment plan. Either way, the delayed payments will be penalty- and interestfree. How do I take advantage of the Employer Assistance Program? 1. File your quarterly report no later than Oct. 31, or as soon as possible, and pay what you can at the time you file. 2. Contact Collections Education and Outreach by email at 3. Include your L&I account ID in your request. You can also reach collections by calling 1-800-301-1826 Paid Leave: Premium rate will increase in 2022 For the first time since Paid Family and Medical Leave launched, the premium rate will increase. This change goes into effect with Q1 of 2022. The split of the employer and employee share of the premium rates will also change in the new year. Starting Jan. 1, 2022, the premium rate will be 0.6%. But for now, the current rate of 0.4% is in effect until Dec. 31, 2021. Large employers who pay a portion of the premium will pay For more Petrick see page 11


Our Commercial Loans aren’t automated or handled online. It’s all person to person. We simplify an otherwise complicated process by navigating our members every step of the way. We offer commercial real estate loans, construction loans, vehicle and equipment loans, and business lines of credit, all designed with your needs in mind.

Petrick from page 10

approximately 27% of the total premium and employees will pay about 73%. More information here…

Thinking about starting a business or know someone looking for opportunities? The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is putting more than 1,100 businesses that pitch money-making ventures on notice that if they deceive or mislead consumers about potential earnings, the FTC won’t hesitate to use its authority to target them with large civil penalties. Read the FTC’s full story… I hope 2022 is a healthy and prosperous one for you and yours and may you see increasing success for your business.

For help with these areas and other aspects of your business, please contact Jerry Petrick with Washington State University’s Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for confidential, no cost professional business advisory services. Contact Jerry via email:

Melissa McDaniel, Commercial Loan Officer

Bring your business to Fibre Federal for Business Plus Checking, Business Online Banking, Remote Deposit, low-cost loans, and incredible member service.

360.423.8750 800.205.7872 Federally insured by NCUA



Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 11

Mind Your Own Business (At The Library) Chris Skaugset Director – Longview Public Library

Cooking up the recipe for reading


t’s that time of year when people’s hearts turn to family, friends, and, of course food. What one single thing better describes the holidays than food. From those home-cooked meals of our youth to the fun, new meals that we try at holiday get-togethers with new family and friends. Food is often in the center of it all. While we’ve always had a very food-centric society, it is only in this era of hundreds of channels, the internet, and with the explosion of food blogs, online reviews, and social networking that we have created a foodie culture that seems to have no bounds. I’m guilty of this as much as the next person enjoying not only the preparation of a good meal, but the thrill of watching experienced chefs prepare incredible food, often with a number of challenges/roadblocks, on television shows such as “Top Chef ”. Cookbooks and books about cooking are many and varied and can be practical but are just as often fun to read. Below you’ll find a number of our more recent additions. Check them out, or any of the many others (let me just say right now that we have many cookbooks), at your local library. “Cheese, Wine, and Bread: Discovering the Magic of Fermentation in England, Italy, and France” by Katie Quinn. Journalist and YouTube star Quinn writes a wonderful book about my three favorite foods and the transformation, through fermentation, that they take from start to finish. Part artisanal survey, part travelogue, and part cookbook this is a well-written and fascinating book. “Everyone’s Table: Global Recipes for Modern Health” by Gregory Gourdet and JJ Goode. Renowned Portland, Ore., chef, and “Top Chef ” favorite, Gourdet revolutionizes healthy eating in this cookbook. It is his guide to cooking globally inspired dishes free of gluten, dairy, soy, legumes, and grains that are so delicious you won’t notice the difference. “Eat Better, Feel Better: My Recipes for Wellness and Healing, Inside and Out” by Giada De Laurentiis. In celebrity chef and bestselling author de Laurentiis’ latest book, you will get an inside look at her approach to healthy, balanced living. The author walks you through how to select food that can actually make you feel better and curate a personalized wellness routine to support a healthy mind and body. “Taste: My Life through Food” by Stanley Tucci. Renowned actor, cookbook author and foodie, Tucci has written a book best described as part memoir and part love letter to the food in his life. This book is a delightful reflection on the intersection of food 12 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

and life, filled with anecdotes and written with wry humor. “Vegan Holiday Cookbook: Festive Plant-Based Meals and Desserts for the Thanksgiving and Christmas Table” by Katie Culpin. Whether you are vegan and dread the family meal, or a non-vegan and doing your best to include friends or family that are, this book is for you. Either way this book has you covered and will hopefully unite family and friends, vegan or not, over simply delicious, easy, healthy, seasonal food. “Cook with Me: 150 Recipes for the Home Cook” by Alex Guarnaschelli. Perhaps best known for her no-nonsense style on “Chopped”, the Food Network star and chef has created a wonderful cookbook for the home cook. In this wonderful cookbook, Guarnaschelli revives the recipes she grew up with and shares insights that reflect the power that food must bring people together and the importance of sustaining traditions and creating new ones. “Modern Comfort Food: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook” by Ina Garten. Bestselling author and hero to home cooks everywhere, Garten shares new recipes that will feed your deepest cravings. Many of these dishes, inspired by childhood favorites, are nothing like your mother, or grandmother, used to make. In her usual friendly and helpful way, Garten will have you making these cozy and delicious recipes over and over again. “Dirt: Adventures in Lyon, as a Chef in Training, Father, and Sleuth Looking for the Secret of French Cooking” by Bill Buford. Once you’ve mastered Italian cuisine, as chronicled in his book “Heat”, New Yorker writer Buford what’s next. In Buford’s case, it involves moving with his wife and twin toddler sons to Lyon, France, and try to master French cuisine. Part memoir of his grueling days in the kitchen, and the life of his family, and part investigation into the history of French cuisine, readers will be engrossed in the often funny and eye-opening behind-the-scenes look at haute cuisine, his life as an expat in France. “Eat a Peach: A Memoir” by David Chang with Gabe Ulla. Throughout his first memoir, chef, restaurateur (Momofuko), and “Ugly Delicious” host Chang never loses sight of the “monumental weirdness” of writing a book about himself. This is a fascinating book about Chang’s career and his mental health, and ultimately how they are intertwined. He copes with bipolar disorder and has battle suicidal thoughts. This is a fabulous and, intimate, selfportrait of a chef and a person, who is always growing.



Large land site perfect for lodging/hospitality, retail, etc.

• CONVENIENTLY LOCATED OFF I-5 Just 30 minutes from PDX & the amenities of Portland

• 45 ACRES OF PRIME, SHOVEL-READY LAND Environmental permits & road improvements in place

• COMPETITIVE UTILITY RATES + INCENTIVES Designed to promote growth & ensure your succes




(360) 673-2325



Workforce Southwest Washington

How companies and job seekers are shaping the future of quality employment


hat makes a position a quality job? Workforce Southwest Washington (WSW) and its partners in the Columbia-Willamette Workforce Collaborative (CWWC) are seeking answers to that question. Together, the three workforce boards that comprise the CWWC oversee a bi-state labor market for the six-county region and have jointly launched a quality jobs initiative. Our Director of Business Services Darcy Hoffman is spear-heading the initiative for WSW. We sat down with her in the following interview to learn more about the Quality Jobs Initiative and its importance to our region. What is the Quality Jobs Initiative? The quality jobs initiative is a response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing historic unemployment levels and economic crisis. It is a strategy to stabilize our workforce and ensure our region can recover equitably. The initiative is a commitment to designing and developing a regional approach with workers, businesses, job seekers, communitybased organizations, economic developers and local municipalities to define, support and promote quality jobs in the Southwest Washington-Portland metro area. The CWWC is designing and leading this regional approach to job quality. Our goal is that the quality jobs initiative will promote an equitable economic recovery and help us rethink our workforce programs and the ways that we invest public workforce funds into industry. We want to ensure that job seekers and workers across our region have access to high-quality jobs. What constitutes a quality job? There are numerous ways to define a quality job. We’re using the work of the Aspen Institute as a model. They’ve done a vast amount of research on job-quality markers. Right now, we are looking at: •

Living wages – that allow people to cover their basic living expenses, take care of themselves and their families and be able to build wealth and assets – that’s number one.

Work environment – the work environment should be safe, free from discrimination, and have a process to engage workers and their voices and opinions.

Schedules – stable and predictable work schedules will be important.

Benefits – and a benefits packages that allows employees and their families to lead a healthy lifestyle and receive paid time off

14 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

when they are sick or need a vacation. •

Career growth opportunities – internal opportunities that employees have to build their skills and advance in a career pathway to higher wages.

Who will the Quality Jobs Initiative support? The pandemic caused unemployment to reach an all-time high. Many members of our community, including Black, Indigenous, Asian, Latinx and other people of color, women, immigrants, individuals with disabilities, and people with less education, were disproportionally affected by the pandemic and the economic devastation that it caused. The strategy of the initiative is aimed at impacting those groups in a positive way. On the other side, it’s to support businesses that are struggling to attract and retain employees to fill their job openings. That’s happening in all industries, in companies of various shapes and sizes. Our business partners can implement strategies from the quality jobs initiative that will help them improve job quality in their own workplace as a recruitment and retention tool. Who are the key partners in the Quality Jobs Initiative? Ultimately, we want it to be a whole-community initiative, but right now, in its infancy, the CWWC is leading the initiative and our quality jobs council is doing the work to define and shape it. The 22-person council is comprised of companies from our high-growth, high-demand sectors – construction, healthcare, manufacturing and technology. And regional community-based organizations who are responsible for serving the people that we want to positively impact. We also have labor representation, job seekers and employees on the council. Its task is to define the criteria for our region and develop the framework to implement job quality strategies and interventions whether you are an employer, a workforce board, local government, service provider, labor/civil rights nonprofit, labor or worker. Prior to that, the three workforce boards held community outreach and listening sessions to invite people to hear about what we were planning and give us advice on things that are important to them, the people they serve or the people they employ, so we can make sure those things are part of the end strategy. How will the Quality Jobs Initiative help job seekers? Once the framework is developed, we will be helping businesses to For more WSW, see page 15

WSW from page 14

implement various strategies. Our goal is a flexible program that can be applied to any company, in any industry, at any level, that wants to improve their own job quality. We’ll be working to help those industry partners make improvements. Then we are going to be talking about those things quite publicly and sharing stories about the companies we are working with and why they’re such a great place to work. I think that will help the people using the workforce system see what opportunities may be more interesting than others because of the job quality markers that these companies will be meeting. How will companies benefit from the Quality Jobs Initiative? The benefit to companies will be helping them improve, not just their recruitment efforts, but also their job retention. Many of the companies we work with support an equitable economic recovery. Our framework for quality jobs will be full of ways they can demonstrate what is important to them. Our goal is impacting recruitment and retention and making jobs better for people – which is good for business. What is happening right now with Quality Jobs? The council has formed — we have held the first four of six meetings. They meet monthly through January. Their job right now is to digest the initial list criteria around wages, benefits and work environment and then further hone in on what specifics might look like in our region. Also, they’re gathering best practices and other resources for the final report that will be developed once the council dissolves in January. That final report will be a blueprint for the

workforce boards and our industry partners to plug into and improve our own job quality. Is there anything else you’d like to add? One of the big disconnects in our public workforce system is that, on one side of the house, you have people that work directly with businesses to understand their needs in terms of their workforce and work on strategies to help them recruit and hire individuals. On the other side, you have a team of career coaches working with job seekers and getting them into education and training and preparing them for jobs. The public workforce system is making significant investments in preparing those job seekers. The two sides seem to be disconnected at times. The job seekers that we prepare do end up in employment, but they don’t always end up employed by the companies that we’re serving who we consider to be high-growth, high-demand, and have better wages and better opportunities for people. Through this initiative we want to close that gap and ensure that the people we invest in are getting opportunities with the companies that we are serving. A key piece of this strategy is to shore that up. The quality jobs initiative is a growing and evolving project based on the dynamic work of the CWWC and quality jobs council. Learn more about the quality jobs initiative and our work at WSW here. Businesses interested in getting involved in the quality jobs initiative should contact Darcy Hoffman at or 360-608-4949.

Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 15

Kelso Public Schools

Longview Public Schools

Mary Beth Tack

Dan Zorn


Keeping kids in school with Test to Stay


or over 14 months, school districts in Washington state have been required to exclude students from school who were identified as close contacts of someone who tested positive

for COVID-19. This has resulted in many students missing valuable in-person classroom instruction and additional support. In Kelso, our continued priority remains the health and safety of our staff and students, and, to the greatest extent possible, maximizing in-person learning. Which is why we are excited to announce the Department of Health has approved Kelso School District as a site to implement the Test to Stay program. Test to Stay is a practice comprised of regular testing and contact tracing to allow close contacts to remain in the classroom while maintaining other layered prevention strategies, such as universal masking, to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This program has been launched to keep healthy students in school as much as safely possible. Our district is working with the deputy health officer, Cowlitz County Health and Human Services, and Health Commons and received approval and support to begin this program Nov. 22. Previously, unvaccinated students who were designated to be close contacts at school were required to quarantine at home for up to 14 days. This program will allow unvaccinated students who have been identified as close contacts at school to continue to learn in-person at school while monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms. Test to Stay is optional, and parental consent is required. More detailed information and protocol can be found beginning on page 16 of the Department of Health’s Supplemental Considerations to Mitigate COVID-19 Transmission in K-12 Schools. COVID-19 testing, combined with other disease prevention strategies, can help our schools detect new cases to prevent outbreaks, reduce the risk of further transmission, and protect students, teachers, and other staff from COVID-19. The Test to Stay program will help support consistent in-person instructional days for our kids, which are critical for student learning


Safety and security takes top priority


t Longview Public Schools the safety and security of our students and staff is a top priority. It is something we take very seriously and have put considerable time and effort into these past few years. In this column, I will be discussing the measures we have taken to prepare our staff and students for emergencies, as well as steps we have taken to make our schools safer. Several years ago, Longview Police Department conducted a safety and security analysis of our schools to identify issues that could be improved. Since that time, the district has been working to implement the recommendations to make our campuses more secure. Improvements have included simple solutions like trimming shrubs around buildings to keep an open line of sight inside and out, installing classroom numbers on the exterior of the school buildings so first responders can identify classroom locations, and installing security cameras in key locations to monitor entrances, hallways, and parking lots. Other improvements included the installation of electronic door locking systems that can be activated remotely, while at the same time implementing a policy of locking all exterior school doors, other than the main entrances. With the front entrances of schools becoming the primary entrance, measures are now being taken to better secure the entrances while maintaining a welcoming environment for our visitors. Many of these safety and security improvements have been funded by the local capital and technology levy passed nearly four years ago. In addition to added security measures, the district has been working intently to prepare staff and students for emergencies by training for drills and performing live practices. During emergencies, the district office supports schools by activating its incident command staff to work with school administrators and emergency responders. With incident command activated, it allows school administrators to focus on emergency protocols and the safety of students and staff. Incident command helps coordinate with emergency responders while directing district resources to help with the response that includes securing and restricting access to schools during an emergency, transporting students offsite when necessary, setting up parent/child reunification processes and sites, and communicating information out to parents, staff and the media. District support of schools during emergencies is done with the help of communication devices and the ability to view school surveillance cameras in the command center at the district office. To practice our plans and test our readiness, our schools have been very busy in recent months conducting live security drills at all 15 schools. These drills include a small scale, offsite evacuation of students to designated locations and include a parent/child

growth and over-all well-being. We are glad to be able to offer it as an option for our school community. 16 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

For more Longview Schools, see page 17

City of Longview MaryAlice Wallis Mayor

Change can be difficult but also rewarding


few years ago, I found myself eager to refine a personal skill – to make a change, so to speak. I’d had a recent birthday, and having a plan to master something new seemed exhilarating even if a bit daunting. I labeled the plan “Kindness 365”, and the basic tenets of the plan included finding opportunities to cultivate kindness for 365 days. I can report that this experiment did not cause any undue stress, nor did it put me in debt even one penny. It did, however, present me with more and more opportunities to engage peaceably (most of which were right beneath my nose), and stretched my desire to be kinder and more empathetic. I also re-realized that in most instances, change, while difficult, is rewarding and beneficial not only to the giver, but also the receiver.

Longview Schools from page 16

reunification element. During these drills, school personnel communicate with incident command using radios; buses pick up students and deliver them to designated sites; and staff perform parent/child reunification activities. These live drills have been going very well and have been extremely helpful in preparing our employees. Larger, more expansive, multi-campus drills will be conducted in the near future to test our capabilities in a more complex event. Emergency training will continue throughout the year. Hopefully, this column has been informative and provides an inside look of the work that is occurring in Longview Public Schools, where the safety and security of our students and staff is a top priority.

As the Longview City Council makes a new transition after this election season, I would like to express sincere gratitude to our outgoing councilors, Chet Makinster and Steve Moon, for their many years of service and thoughtful contributions to our council and city. I would likewise offer congratulations to newcomers Angie Wean and Spencer Boudreau, and warmly welcome them both to the city council team. Change should be the healthy part of the growth in the City of Longview, and interestingly, the city’s continued stability depends on it. As city councilors that make public policy, change is what we are hired to do, and through the unique lens of our council initiatives, we do so for the betterment of the community. The following list represents some of those changes approved by the Longview City Council in 2021: •

Homeless encampment within the city is allowed now for one year with 100 people.

A Homeless Pilot Project partnership was established with Cowlitz County.

Crosswalk signals will be updated and installed at Civic Circle.

A $4.7 million grant was acquired for resurfacing Washington Way.

Multiple city roads that cross schools and parks have speed reductions.

Two behavioral health specialists will work fulltime with Longview police for mental and behavioral health calls.

A $133,000 grant was acquired to help re-establish the Longview police officer bicycle patrol.

As we wind down the year 2021 and reflect upon the future of 2022, let us give each other grace to grow in change. Let us be that change that makes the difference for ourselves and for each other.


computer • tablet • phone Sign up today and receive a $ credit


Sign up today! Call 360.423.2210 or Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 17

Lower Columbia College Chris Bailey President

Update on LCC's BAS programs


ower Columbia College (LCC) was excited to graduate its first Bachelors of Applied Science (BAS) students, this June, in Teacher Education. There were 16 students that completed the BAS-TE program. Fifteen students graduated with Washington state residency teacher certification, and one student completed the early childhood education certificate pathway. Local school districts were the immediate beneficiaries of the program. Local school districts hired 15 LCC BAS-TE graduates in fall quarter, leaving one student who opted to pursue a master’s degree instead of seeking employment. This program, LCC’s first baccalaureate degree, was created to solve the need to recruit and retain local teachers in our community. There are currently 22 students in the second BAS-TE cohort, completing their final year and student teaching requirements.

Keep up with the latest on your heart.

18 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

There were 31 new students admitted into the program’s third cohort this fall. LCC expanded into a second BAS program, in Organizational Leadership and Technical Management, in fall, 2021. Recruiting and student eligibility was established over the summer, resulting in an initial cohort of 24 students. This program creates a pathway for students who wish to move into leadership/supervisory positions. It was specifically created for those who had obtained two-year associates degrees in vocational fields. Currently, Lower Columbia College staff is researching the possible addition of another LCC Bachelors of Applied Science degree in the near future. Stay tuned, as Lower Columbia College continues to provided relevant educational opportunities to the citizens of the Lower Columbia region.

5K R U N/WAL K Friday, December 10, 2021

6:00 pm

at The Civic Circle in Longview

Costume Contest: Friday, 5:30 pm at the Monticello Hotel Packet Pickup: Thursday, December 9, 10:00 am - 5:30 pm at the Monticello Hotel Late Registration: Day of Race: 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm




th year




to register * by November 30

Register online at

Cowlitz County Commissioners Arne Mortensen

County Commissioner, District 1

Following the changing science


o one can say that 2021 has been a normal year, but while change is unnerving, it is the only way to solve problems. We all have been bombarded with the thought that we should

follow the “science,” so that we can establish public policies. But who decides what “science” is telling us? The answer to that question truly is simple: Science never is settled. Until every observation has been verified and explained, the science is lacking. Let’s just look at climate change at a very high level: Greta Thunberg, a person of very modest understanding of the world, yells at us about anthropogenic climate change, while Ivar Giaever, a Nobel prize in physics winner, cautions us that there’s just simply not enough understood to draw the conclusions pushed by Thunberg and many

No Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) meetings for four weeks: Because of the lack of a quorum, the usual regular BoCC meetings have not been held since the Oct. 19. The next formal meeting will be the Nov. 23. The seat for commissioner of District 3 has been vacant since Sept. 3. County morgue: The new county morgue is now in operation. Wow, that was a many-years effort. Budget decisions: Prior to the month-long hiatus, the BoCC had taken the following notable decisions: •

tax for the County. Note: This increase for 2022 property tax is

others. Our state and our nation are pursuing an agenda of climate

banked; so, next year the BoCC could take this 1% plus the new

change with draconian measures that devastate the people financially. Bought gasoline lately? Who are you going to believe? There are similarities between climate change politics and vaccine

1% for 2023. •

often in the recent past has taken road fund money for the

force to press our solutions to a yet grossly misunderstood science? society. A search for shelter and safety at the expense of liberty was memorialized by Benjamin Franklin, who famously said, “They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve

The County collects via property tax, money for the County roads. Under a special provision, called a levy shift, the County

politics. Which science do we follow? Are we morally correct to use Hint: government never has solved these issues for the betterment of

The BoCC did not take the allowable 1% growth in property

general fund. For 2022, there will be no levy shift. •

For 2022, the BoCC will collect $7 million from the Headquarters Landfill.

In the past, the Cowlitz Conservation District (CCD) has been poorly funded by the BoCC. In 2021, the CCD received $50,000

neither liberty nor safety.”

(up from about $2,000). For 2022 they will receive $100,000.

No commissioner yet: There is, as of this writing, no appointment to

This reflects a recognition of high-quality contributions that

replace the commissioner seat vacated by Joe Gardner. That decision is

help restore fish habitats while helping homeowners minimize

in the hands of the governor.

property loss due to natural forces. •

The BoCC has “committed” substantive support for matching funds to extend broadband internet, specifically in this case in District 3. Whether the application for grant funding is successful will determine whether the funds will be used for this matching. The Port of Kalama is leading this effort, in

1157 3rd Avenue, Suite 218 1157 Longview, 3rd Avenue, WA Suite 98632 218 1157 3rd360.952.3100 Avenue, Suite 218 Longview, WA 98632 Longview, WA 98632 360.952.3100

360.952.3100 20 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

conjunction with Petrichor. Maintenance woes: The County buildings continue to suffer from maintenance that has been delayed over the many years of life. Specifically, the heating and cooling of the Hall of Justice and the Administration Building have been serious problems.

New Members Add your business to our growing membership. Call 360-423-8400 Today! Membership packages to fit your needs

Business Association with opportunities to promote trade through Chamber socials, special events and committee participation. • Annual Meeting and Banquet • Networking Events • Committee Participation • Business Contacts • Quarterly Membership Meetings • Civic Representation • Monthly Business After Hours

Look Who Joined in November Affordable Hearing Kristy Johnson 1066 14th Avenue Longview, WA 98632 360-532-8808

Business Services include marketing for your business, referrals and access to Chamber publications and research data. • Mailing Labels • Membership Window Decals • Member Referrals • Ribbon Cutting • Website Links • Member to Member Discounts • Membership Directory • Tax Deduction • Newsletter • Business Card Display • Use of Chamber Logo

Representation through action committees, candidate forums and up-to-date action alerts. • Legislative Representation • Issues Tracking and Information • Task Forces • Candidate Forums • Legislative Update Breakfast • Demographics Publication

Membership Packages Basic • $275 or $26 per month Bronze • $500 or $46.66 per month Silver • $1,000 or $86.33 per month Gold • $2,500 or $211.33 per month Platinum • $5,000 or $416.66 per month Diamond Club • $10,000 or $834 per month Nonprofit • $180 or $18 per month

We have what you need for a memorable event! Birthday themes for kids and adults of all ages. Supplies for any occasion: bounce houses, tables, chairs and a popcorn machine. Singing telegrams, balloon arches and other ideas. Let us help you create an event to remember!

3202 Ocean Beach Hwy., Suite 154 Longview, WA 98632

(360) 998-4080 Sunday and Monday 10:00 am – 5:00 pm Tuesday - Saturday 10:00 am – 6:00 pm Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 21

Cowlitz County Commissioners Dennis Weber

County Commissioner, District 2

Contract completion, cold weather challenges, a Toutle collaborative and African adventure


he Board of County Commissioners (BoCC) is finalizing new agreements with Waste Control/Connections for services at the landfill; contractors finishing up road improvements on

Delameter Road, emergency repairs on Cloverdale Road, intersection improvements at Hazel Dell and State Route 411, as well as the new County morgue; updating our private janitorial contract now that the opened. Cold weather has been a real challenge. Deferred maintenance has finally caught up to our major HVAC systems, office temperature especially at the Hall of Justice, are unacceptably low. Temporary heaters have been distributed while finding replacement parts, bearings, and belts to obsolete systems has necessitated nationwide searches and jetliner delivery. However, the county roads department

Service is the difference!

Glenda Beam

Amy Hoyer

Escrow Officer

Escrow Officer

Brittney Rexford Escrow Assistant

Michelle Mortensen

Jason Hanson

Darren Plank

Title Officer

Policy Typist

Title Officer


Carrie Staggs

Escrow Assistant

Escrow Assistant


Pam McCormick

Steve Quaife

Branch Manager

Bookkeeper/Recorder Campbell Order Desk/Receptionist

Leah Stanley Title Officer

Melinda Gottfryd

Policy Typist

Breshae Brunette Megan Howerton Title Plant Admin

Title Typist

Most in-depth title plant in the county. Accurate Reliable Timely Locally Owned 1159 14th Avenue , Longview, WA 98632 360.423.5330 22 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

reports relatively minor flood from the heavy rains in mid-November. Recent court decisions and legislation has resulted in over $4 million in grants from the state to implement law enforcement reforms while reviewing fines and sentences on now-unconstitutional drug possession cases going back to 1971. These dollars are going to the sheriff, prosecuting attorney, the county clerk, and the Office of Public Defense. Cowlitz County is joining in a long-range planning collaborative regarding the Spirit Lake/Toutle/Cowlitz rivers for the next 50 years. This comprehensive effort includes considering transferring the Spirit Lake Tunnel from the U.S. Forest Service to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE); complete raising the sediment retention structure near Kid Valley, improve fish passage along the Toutle River; add new recreation opportunities such as a Sno-Park and an off-road vehicle park, create a tree farm/shoreline restoration program near the public shooting range; restore annual monitoring of sediment flow down the Cowlitz River by the COE; and complete bike trails along the Cowlitz River. Commissioners did not have meetings for four weeks this fall as the Joe Gardner vacancy remained unfilled and I left for a long-scheduled family vacation including a daughter’s wedding as well as three emerging African democracies: Ethiopia, Kenya, and South Africa. Regular but sparse emails to County Chief of Staff Kurt Williams revealed that no major actions or emergencies were needed. Perhaps by the time this is published Gov. Jay Inslee will have announced his choice, as required by state law. In the meantime, I witnessed first-hand the crush of “multi-modal transportation gridlock” in urban centers without adequate roads, few stop signs, but many round-a-bouts; aging “new” construction left uncomplete with bamboo-like scaffolding because of punitive tax policies for finished buildings; vast stretches of urban sprawl with densely crowded “affordable” housing from hilltop to hilltop marked only by rusting, corrugated sheet metal roofs; and commercial “landuse planning” in which multitudes of small shops between housing and roads offered everything for sale, from fresh fruit to caskets, auto parts, and furniture.

Shop Local



1413 Commerce

1530 S. Gold St.



Longview Downtowners Lindsey Cope President

Shop small businesses beyond Saturday


he Longview Downtowners invite everyone to shop historic, downtown Longview year round. Small Business Saturday took place Nov. 27 with 70 downtown retail businesses and restaurants offering sales, prizes, and promotions. This year we had additional pop-up vendors in Halo Salon, the Merk and Hearth Coffee. Hearth Coffee also hosted its Longview Night Market. There is still time to shop downtown where you can avoid supply chain interruption and shipping delays while supporting local businesses. Here are more events happening this holiday season: Dec. 2, 4-6 p.m. – Festival of Trees public viewing presented by the Junior Service League of Lower Columbia. Come see the trees that are available for auction online and shop downtown businesses. Find more information at Dec. 4, 5 p.m. – 40th annual Holiday Parade presented by Cowlitz PUD in partnership with the Longview Downtowners. More information including participant registration is at Dec. 7-18th – Inaugural Elf on the Shelf Downtown Contest. Each

day look for the elf mannequin at a different downtown Longview business. Post a photo of the elf on our Facebook event and tag the business where you located it to be entered to win prizes. Find more information at Dec. 10 – The Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce presents its annual Jingle all the Way 5K Run/Walk at Longview Civic Circle. Costume contest at the Monticello Hotel begins at 5:30 p.m. and the 5K begins at 6 p.m. Register today at Dec. 11 – Photos with Santa at the Merk from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. along with Shop Local Saturday. Come snap a photo with Santa, enjoy lunch at one of our fine restaurants, and work on that holiday shopping list. Dec. 18 – Photos with Elf on the Shelf at the Merk from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. along with Shop Local Saturday. Take a photo with the elf, enjoy lunch, and wrap up your holiday shopping in downtown Longview. Follow this and related events at downtownlongviewwa. Shop local and be merry this Small Business Saturday and beyond!

Celebrate the Holidays with us! Two Great Shows to get you in the Holiday Spirit



Here Comes Christmas

Friday, December 3, 2021 at 7:30 PM & Saturday, December , 2021 at 2:00 PM

From the author of All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, comes this charming show of 15 holiday stories that have been crafted into one engaging evening. Directed by Jueanne Meyers and starring an all local cast!

Winter Song

Tickets: $25/17 & under: $20

Saturday, December 18, 2021 at 7:30 PM

Winter Song is a collection of beloved tunes and tales that celebrate winter and all it represents. Join us for a cozy, musical celebration of the most wonderful time of the year! Starring Merideth Kaye Clark, Mont Christ Hubbard and Brandon Woolley Tickets: $35-$40/ 17 & under: $20

Give the Gift of Theatre! Columbia Theatre gift

Columbia Theatre Longview Box Office: 360.575.8499/ 24 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

certificates make great stocking stuffers...They are good for any performance at the Columbia and they never expire!



1 2 8 9 10 14

1 5

Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM Chamber Ambassadors, 7:30am, Columbia Bank

Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM Lower Columbia Professionals, 4pm, Explorer Brewing Co.

Jingle All the Way, LV Civic Circle, 5:30pm late registration and costume contest; Race at 6pm

Chamber Exec. Board, Noon, Mill City Grill Ribbon Cutting, Affordable Hearing, 11am Holiday Mixer, Longview Country Club, 5:30-7pm


Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 F sQuatch Squad, 4pm, Mill City Grill

21 22 24 29 31

New Year's Day, Chamber office closed

Chamber Board, Noon, Mill City Grill

Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM Christmas Eve, Chamber office closed

Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM

New Year’s Eve, Chamber office closed

Your Chamber Connection radio show 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM

6 11

Chamber Ambassadors, 7:30am, Columbia Bank

Chamber Executive Board Meeting, Mill City Grill, Noon

12 13 17 18 19 26 28 29

Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM

Lower Columbia Professionals, 4pm, Explorer Brewing Co.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Chamber office closed Chamber Board, noon, Mill City Grill

Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM Your Chamber Connection radio show, 6pm, KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM

sQuatch Fest, 4-8pm, Cowlitz County Event Center

sQuatch Fest, 10am-8pm, Cowlitz County Event Center

Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 25

Ribbon Cuttings Thank you to these Ambassadors who participated in ribbon cutting celebrations held recently! Josh Carter KLOG-KUKN-The Sleigh Diane Craft Koelsch Communities Kelly Godden Specialty Rents & Events

Welcome New Member

Affordable Dentures and Implants

Kerri Guitteau Cowlitz Black Bears Elisha Jolma Sho'Me Real Estate Nick Lemiere Edward Jones Eric McCrandall Family Health Center Carrie Medack Diamond Residential Mortgage Bailey Roberts Fibre Federal Credit Union Tiffani Whitten Snap Fitness Pam Whittle Realty One Group Pacifica

Welcome New Member Mt. St. Helens Gifts

26 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

Teedara Wolf Cowlitz PUD

Ribbon Cuttings Welcome New Member He Brews Coffee Roasters

Welcome New Member

Hagan Hamilton Insurance Solutions

Congratulations Grand Opening

YMCA of SW Washington Family Zone

Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 27

News & Events

News and events come from our website, press releases, and public information shared with us. To see more visit

Longview Fire shares holiday safety tips Winter holidays are a time for families and friends to get together, but that also means a greater risk for fire. Following a few simple tips will help ensure a happy and fire-safe holiday season. Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires, followed by Christmas Day and Christmas Eve. Here are a few of National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) tips for a safe holiday season. Holiday Decorating

Turn off all light strings and decorations before leaving home or going to bed.

Holiday traditions continue in Longview Cowlitz PUD’s Connect to Community Committee will be organizing the Longview Downtowners’ Holiday Parade and Ceremonial Civic Circle Lighting Dec. 4 at 5 p.m. This is the 40th year for the downtown Longview twilight parade.

The approximately 1-mile parade route runs from the Cowlitz PUD at Commerce Avenue and Fir Street down Commerce to Maple Street, left on Maple, left on 14th and right on Broadway Avenue to the Civic Center in front of the library to the Monticello Hotel for the annual Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce Tree Lighting.

Be careful with holiday decorations. Choose decorations that are flame resistant or flame retardant.

Keep lit candles away from decorations and other things that can burn.

Some lights are only for indoor or outdoor use, but not both.

State agencies announce 2022 free days

Replace any string of lights with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.

Read manufacture instructions for number of light strands to connect.

Use clips not nails to hang lights so cords do not become damaged.

Washington State Parks has designated the free days in 2022 when visitors will not need a Discover Pass to park at state parks and on recreation lands managed by Washington Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).

Keep decorations away from windows and doors.

Holiday Entertaining

In 2022, the Discover Pass free days are: Jan. 1 – New Year’s Day Jan. 17 – Martin Luther King Day

NFPA’s Fire Analysis and Research Division strongly discourages the use of turkey fryers.

March 9 - Billy Frank Jr.’s birthday

Stay in the home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently.

April 22 – Earth Day

Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot and kids should stay three feet away.

June 12 – Free Fishing Weekend

Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns.

Sept. 24 – National Public Lands Day

March 19 – Washington State Parks’ birthday June 11 – National Get Outdoors Day June 19 - Juneteenth Oct. 10 – World Mental Health Day

Keep knives out of the reach of children.

Nov. 11 – Veterans Day

Be sure electric cords from an electric knife, coffee maker, plate warmer or mixer are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.

Nov. 25 – Native American Heritage Day

Keep matches and utility lighters out of the reach of children–up high in a locked cabinet.

Never leave children alone in room with a lit candle.

Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.

Before Heading to Bed •

Blow out lit candles when you leave the room or go to bed.

28 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

Billy Frank Jr.’s birthday, Juneteenth and World Mental Health Day will replace the previously recognized springtime day, National Trails Day and National Park Service birthday. In addition, Nov. 25 will be formally recognized as Native American Heritage Day. Note: The free days do not apply to Sno-Parks. During the winter season, November through April, visitors to Sno-Parks will need Sno-Park permits, which are available for purchase online or from vendors throughout the state. For more information about winter recreation permit requirements, visit: For more News and Events, see page 29

News and Events from page 28

Outstanding Washington employers honored Nine Washington employers received top honors at the Association of Washington Business’ (AWB) awards program. The event, sponsored by Banner Bank, was hosted at the Greater Tacoma Convention Center. Guests were able to view the event online as well. This event celebrates how employers contribute to Washington’s quality of life by creating economic opportunity and giving back to our communities. In addition to the companies honored with awards, AWB presented Legacy of Leadership awards to Brad Tilden, the former president and CEO and current chairman of the board at Alaska Airlines, and Gary Chandler, who served as AWB’s vice president of government affairs for 20 years before transitioning to a new role last month as vice president of strategic development. Each of the nine award categories listed below align with AWB’s mission and vision. Employer of the Year: Washington River Protection Solutions Entrepreneur of the Year: Parrots Inc. Excellence in Washington Family-Owned Business: Empire Bolt and Screw Washington Veterans and Families Award: Humana

The Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce would like to THANK the following loyal members for renewing their partnership with us this month. Canterbury Inn Columbia Ford Hyundai Nissan Ecological Land Services, Inc Fibre Federal Credit Union – Main Branch KLOG/KUKN/The WAVE Radio Stations Longview Radiologists, PS, Inc Omelettes & More PeaceHealth St. John Foundation Suburban Propane

Washington Resiliency Award: Virginia Mason Franciscan Health Leading Environmental Practices Award: DTG Recycle

Teri's Restaurant

Washington Achieve Award: Community Health Association of Spokane Washington Connect Award: DH Washington Advance Award: Columbia Bank Also awarded: Legislator of the Year: State Sen. Curtis King, R-Yakima Manufacturer of the Year: Vaughan Co. Manufacturing Excellence Award for Operational Excellence: Penn Cove Shellfish Manufacturing Excellence Award for Green Manufacturing: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Manufacturing Excellence Award for Innovation: SIGMADESIGN –Association of Washington Business press release Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 29


January 11: available , February 8: People's Injury Network Northwest March 8: CCRC-The Mediation Center April 12: Cowlitz Indian Tribe May 10: Kelso Longview Elks Lodge #1482 June 14: Canterbury Park July 12: Fidelity National Title August 9: The Jewelers Bench, Inc. September 13: available October 11: Farm Dog Bakery/Life Works November 8: available December 13: (Holiday Mixer)

Interested in hosting Business After Hours in 2022? Contact the Chamber at 360-423-8400 or email

Business After Hours January 2022 Available PNW Meatheads BBQ hosted a very successful Business After Hours in November with 85 guests in attendance. Our Jan. 11, 2022, Business After Hours date is currently open. Give us a call 360-423-8400 or email Julie at jrinard@kelsolongviewchamber. org

Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 31

Your Chamber Connection Radio Show Wednesdays at 6 pm KEDO 1270 AM or 99.9 FM

Vashti Langford, Cowlitz Indian Tribe

Laura Hight, CCRC – The Meditation Center

Cal Dowd, Prographyx and Raymond Pyle, Catlin Properties, Inc.

Contact Julie Rinard at 360-423-8400 or to schedule your interview

Janine Manny, YMCA of SW Washington

Carrie Powell, Mt. St. Helens Gifts

MaryAlice Wallis, Longview Mayor

32 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021

Joseph Brown, He Brews Coffee Roasters

Lower Columbia Professionals Bunco Fundraiser

PNW Meatheads BBQ hosted a Bunco event that raised over $3,000 for the Lower Columbia Professionals scholarship fund. Bunco players started lining up more than an hour before we “officially” opened the event. Lower Columbia Professionals, other Chamber members and friends donated 30 raffle baskets and got the crowds excited about winning.

Kelso Longview Business Connection | December 2021 | 33

Business Connection Advertising Rates Effective August, 2020 The Kelso Longview Business Connection monthly newsletter is published the first of each month, posted electronically on our website and emailed to over 7,000 local business professionals, city and county officials. To be included in this monthly email, call the Chamber office at 360-423-8400. Size 1/16 Page 1/8 Page 1/4 Page 1/2 Page Full Page

1 - 3 Issues

4-7 Issues

$110 $175 $205 $325 $625

$90 $140 $170 $290 $570

8-10 Issues

12 Issues

$70* $105* $140* $245* $480* *Includes ad on website

$50* $75* $100* $190* $400*

Dimensions 2" x 2.5" 4" x 2.5" 4" x 5.25" 4" x 10.5" (V) or 8" x 5.25" (H) 8" x 10.5"

All ads include full color and any design work. Ads may be changed monthly. Deadline is the 21st of the month prior to publication. Digital files: PDF preferred, high resolution JPEG accepted. Non-members of the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce, please add 30% to above rates. To advertise or request additional information, please call 360-423-8400 or contact: CEO Bill Marcum Project Manager Julie Rinard

Advertising Agreement

Date: _____________

Business Name: ____________________________________________ Phone: ____________________ Contact Name: _____________________________________________ Cell:______________________ Address: _____________________________________ City/State/Zip: __________________________ Email: ____________________________________________ Fax: _____________________________ No. of issues




Plus web ad: 300W X 100H


Ad Rep Signature___________________________