February 2021 Business Connection

Page 1

Business Connection Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce

The Chamber would like to see traffic through downtown shops pick up in 2021.

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce Bill Marcum CEO

k February 2021

Volume 13 • Issue 2 Business Connection is published monthly by the Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce 105 N. Minor Road • Kelso, WA 98626


Bill Marcum, CEO Amy Hallock, Project Manager Pam Fierst, Office Manager Joelle Wilson, Social Media Service

Knocking on Olympia's door to open our businesses


enate Bill 5114 sponsored by 20th District Sen. John Braun (R) and 5th District Sen. Mark Mullet (D) basically reopens all businesses in the state of Washington immediately. Moving all businesses from the governor’s Phase 1 plan for recovery to Phase 2. Allowing all businesses to operate at 25 percent capacity. Wednesday, Jan. 20, was the first hearing for the bill, more than 1,600 business people signed up in support of the bill and over 400 signed up to testify. I was totally disgusted at the process of this hearing. Sen. Hunt (D-22nd District) conducted the hearing and allowed for one hour of testimony and gave every person testifying ONE minute to speak–really, one minute. Nearly everyone who testified had their mic cut off and was not allowed to finish their testimony. All in all about 40 people were able to testify, about 95 percent in favor of 5114.


360-423-8400 kelsolongviewchamber.org To advertise, call Bill Marcum 360-423-8400 or bmarcum@kelsolongviewchamber.org Ad Deadline 20th of Each Month

This is your chance to be heard... don’t let this get swept under the rug. Business needs to open and immediately. You all know that, restaurants know that, theaters, bowling alleys, gyms... research has already shown that these businesses are not a facilitator of the virus. Click here to read the bill. And click here to leave a message in support or nonsupport of the bill. As of Jan. 27, we have 295 active cases of the COVID-19 virus in Cowlitz County. That’s right. Check it out here. Since March 2020 we have 3,565 (3.4 percent of the population) total cases and 36 deaths. Today, we have 36 new cases and a total of 295 active cases (.0028 percent of our population) yet, our local businesses are either closed or very restricted with the exception of the large retail and grocery stores. Just so you know, the number of currently active cases is the number allowed in Safeway at one time, yet your favorite For more SB 5114, see page 2

Senate Bill 5114 from page 1

restaurant cannot have one person inside their business. That is wrong. Be active, let your voice be heard. Every Monday at 7 a.m. throughout the state legislative session the Chamber holds a Legislative Briefing with your elected officials in the 19th and 20th districts. The first two session included all six representatives, providing you valuable information about bills that will be affecting your business. Over 30 local businesses and elected officials have attended via Zoom. We need more local restaurants and retailers to come to the meetings and talk about what this extended shutdown means to you and your business. Join us via Zoom... Meeting ID: 876 6752 2792 Passcode: 355287

Handful of counties move to governor's Phase 2 Gov. Jay Inslee announced the Puget Sound and West regions will be moving to Phase 2 effective Feb. 1 per his updated Roadmap to Recovery. This includes the following counties: Snohomish, King, Pierce, Thurston, Lewis, Pacific and Grays Harbor. This change will allow restaurants in these counties to reopen indoor dining at 25 percent capacity through 11 p.m. Indoor fitness centers and live entertainment venues – including museums, bowling alleys and concert halls – can reopen to 25 percent capacity. Bars that don’t serve food must remain closed. In-store retail remains at 25 percent capacity for both Phases 1 and 2 with no clear steps announced for increased capacity. Only three of the four metrics below must be met now in order to move forward from Phase 1 to Phase 2 for the other regions: • Decreasing trend in 14-day rate of new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population • Decreasing trend in 14-day rate of new COVID-19 hospital admissions per 100,000 population • Average 7-day percent occupancy of ICU staffed beds less than 90 percent; and, 7-day percent positivity of COVID-19 tests less than 10 percent The Department of Health will evaluate and update progress every two weeks on the online dashboard.

2 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

Connect with Legislators Legislative Briefing Breakfast Begins Monday, January 25, 7am, via Zoom

And continue each Monday throughout the Legislative Session John Braun

Senator 20th Legislative District

Each week, contact is made with our local legislators, either in person or by conference call, for an update on the bills and issues currently under consideration. Gary Chandler from the AWB is our main source of information as to what is going on in Olympia from a business perspective.

Jeff Wilson

Senator 19th Legislative District

As a business leader, you often feel the impact from some of the decisions made by our State Legislators on your ability to do business in Washington State. These breakfast briefings give you an opportunity to discuss personally with your elected officials issues that impact your business and seek options that provide for better business operations in Washington. Ed Orcutt

Representative, 20th Legislative District

Gary Chandler, VP with the Association of Washington Business leads a very lively discussion about proposed bills that can affect your businesses bottom line.

January, 25- (105 day session) Legislative Update Breakfast Monday’s During the Session Virtual Zoom Meeting 7:00 a.m.

Contact the Chamber for Zoom instructions.

Pete Abbarno

Representative 20th Legislative District

Jim Walsh

Representative, 19th Legislative District

May - December Legislative Committee Meetings First Monday of each month Location for 2021 — TBD

Joel McEntire

Representative 19th Legislative District

360-423-8400 or email Bill Marcum, bmarcum@kelsolongviewchamber.org

Need help navigating PPP? Banking relationship offers the best start


n January, the Small Business Administration (SBA) opened another round of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for eligible borrowers. We’ve asked three Chamber board members, representing local banking institutions, to answer a few questions: Neil Zick, president and CEO, Twin City Bank; Marc Silva, assistant vice president/branch manager, Columbia Bank; and Marlene Johanson, commercial banking officer, Heritage Bank Northwest and its SBA department. Keep in mind, each individual business’ needs and situations are different and business owners should consult with the banking institution they have established a relationship with through the years to determine if the PPP is right for them. Cowlitz County banks helped many businesses apply for 2020 PPP. Since the application portal for this round opened in mid-January, processing has run smoothly. Zick said Twin City Bank is currently experiencing lower demand than in the first round when it helped distribute about $14 million to Cowlitz County businesses. He anticipates about half this time. The lower demand and better understanding of the programs and systems by all parties involved is making this round easier, Johanson said. What is available? And how much? How long? “The Treasury and the SBA has assured us that we will not run out

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of money because they have restricted the most any one borrower can get to $2 million and less than 300 employees,” Zick said. “We are currently accepting applications from Columbia Bank clients who have an established business relationship with us on or prior to December 27, 2020 and that meet the eligibility criteria for a First Draw or Second Draw loan,” Silva said. “The program is scheduled to close to both first- and second-time applicants on March 31.” Making contact with the bank you’ve established a relationship with through your business is the best way to find out if you are eligible or should apply. Being prepared with the necessary paperwork will speed up the process. Johanson suggested reviewing 2019 and 2020 financials, with a CPA perhaps, to determine where revenue is down as a good start. More specifically, Silva offered this: The program is open to first-time and existing PPP borrowers, including businesses, some nonprofit organizations, self-employed workers and independent contractors. For first-time PPP borrowers, the program is generally open to businesses with up to 500 employees, with no requirement to prove a revenue loss. Existing PPP borrowers with 300 or fewer employees may apply for a second loan if they can demonstrate they experienced a 25 percent reduction in gross receipts during a quarter in 2020 compared with the same quarter a year earlier. These borrowers must have used or show that they will use the full amount of the initial PPP loan for approved expenses before they receive more PPP funding. Twin City is seeing less applications this time, but Zick said it may be because they still have Phase 1 funds or may be ineligible. The requirement to show 25 percent revenue reduction is the primary driver to less loan volume, reported Heritage Bank, which expects roughly 50 percent of first-time borrowers to apply for second draw loans. “We expect the hardest-hit industries to account for the bulk of PPP loan applications – restaurants, retail, hospitality – and because we have specialty expertise in dental and health care, Columbia will likely see a number of applications from these sectors, as well,” Silva said. Columbia Bank also expects the majority of applicants will be small businesses with roughly 10 or fewer employees that need small loans. This is because the latest stimulus package provided for a simplified forgiveness process for PPP loans under $150,000. “Forgiveness is going smoothly for the Phase 1 group and the SBA has simplified the process for those who borrowed less than $150,000,” Zick said.

1425 Maple Street • Longview, WA 98632


www.cascade-title.com 4 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

“Like the first round of PPP, this round of PPP loans will be forgivable,” Silva said. “Borrowers must spend at least 60 percent of the funds on payroll to receive full forgiveness. The other 40 percent may be used on eligible costs that include certain mortgage expenses, rent and utility payments. The law expands forgivable expenses to include expenditures for personal protective equipment and other gear to protect workers; supplier costs; operations expenditures; and property damage costs tied to public disturbances during 2020.” Bottom line: Local banks are ready and willing to help their business customers get the aid they need during these trying times.


Surprise: Local businesses report doing okay, for a pandemic

usinesses in Kelso and Longview are getting through the COVID-19 lockdown okay. At least that’s what they revealed in a recent Chamber of Commerce survey.

“All the results surprised me,” Chamber CEO Bill Marcum said. “It looks like our members’ businesses are faring better than the average business in Washington state in all categories. That is very positive.”

Kelso Longview Chamber COVID Impact Survey

Q4 How long would it take your business to fully recover if businesses were able to fully reopen tomorrow? Answered: 73

Less than a month

Seventy-three businesses responded to the online survey sent in eblasts to the membership over a three-week period.

Under 6 months

6 months - 1 year

“We wanted to see if we could get a better reading of what our members were dealing with as opposed to state and national survey results,” Marcum said.

Over 1 year

Don't know

Among the surprises: • A majority of respondents, 61percent, noted experiencing a moderate or significant revenue loss in 2020, a healthy percentage, 39 percent, said they were breaking even, covering cost and even generating a profit. • Just under half, 48 percent, anticipate their economic outlook to remain the same or improve this year, while another 22 percent just cannot predict the future. • Approximately 62 percent believe if they could reopen tomorrow, they could fully recover within a year. While the numbers are not as optimistic if the governor’s Stay Home, Stay Safe orders remain in place, 42 percent believe they could continue to operate six months to indefinitely before having to permanently shut down.

Other (please specify) 0%

Chamber staff plan to use the information to create a 2021 plan to help area businesses get healthy. To point the Chamber in a direction, the survey allowed for multiple responses to two questions. The member responses chart a clear path for the Chamber. Kelso-Longview business owners are worried the future will bring decreased revenue, increased expenses and new or increased taxes. In speaking with local legislators, Marcum said he understands their stress as state government continues to push for new taxes even when recent economic numbers and revenue reports were far better than anticipated. Marcum anticipates two taxes in particular will squeeze business. “The gas tax, that’s a big number for those who transport goods,” he said mentioning its impact on companies who depend on fleets to deliver everything from the chips and salsa at the downtown Mexican restaurant to the dishwasher bought at the appliance store, and how it trickles down to the number of people driving to Kelso or Longview to visit Mount St. Helens or frequenting their favorite shops. There’s also concern businesses forced to lay off workers during Stay










90% 100%


Less than a month



Under 6 months


14 24

6 months - 1 year


Over 1 year



Don't know





Other (please specify) TOTAL


Kelso Longview Chamber COVID Impact Survey

Q5 Beyond the short-term impact of closures due to COVID, to what extent do you expect the following factors will affect your business during 2021? Answered: 71

“I was just amazed. That’s very positive,” Marcum said. “To think we can recover in six months to a year, That’s pretty impressive.” Marcum acknowledges some businesses are coming through the pandemic better than others. Professional and services did well. Retail and restaurants that were able to pivot are holding their own. Nonprofits and service organizations may have come through 2020 a bit battered but may find it harder to bounce back in 2021.

Skipped: 0

Skipped: 2

Decreased Revenue


Increased expeneses New and/or increased taxes Loss of talent/workf... Employer legislative... Other (please specify) 0%










90% 100%


Decreased Revenue



Increased expeneses



New and/or increased taxes



Loss of talent/workforce



Employer legislative issues



Other (please specify)



Total Respondents: 71

Home, Stay Safe orders are now being hit a second time. “The unemployment tax is up 400 percent to local businesses, some as high as 700 percent,” Marcum said. It’s no wonder, survey respondents5 /emphasized economic/ 7 COVID-19 recovery, working with the Legislature on taxes and government, and small business and entrepreneurship leadership as Chamber priorities they would encourage. Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 5

Longtime chiropractor and past Chamber board member retires

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

In a December letter to patients and friends, Clay Bartness announced retirement from his chiropractic practice. Kelso-Longview Chamber of Commerce CEO Bill Marcum offered “congratulations” to Bartness, who also recently retired from many years of service on the Chamber Board of Directors. Bartness and his family moved to the Kelso-Longview area in May 1973. By October he had joined fellow chiropractor Grant Burchim in practice. In 1976, he and chiropractor Earl Nielsen built a clinic together. “I practiced there until 2014 when I left to join Van Fleet Chiropractic,” he wrote in his letter. “Our family has been blessed to be apart of, and accepted into, this community for the last 47 years. I will truly miss my patients who have became friends and a part of our family. I thank the community for the support and acceptance over these 47 years.” In addition to the Chamber, through the years Bartness sat on the St. John Foundation Board, Longview School Board, many Washington state chiropractic boards, and participated with the American Chiropractic Association Board.

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 Rozwod NORPAC Christine Schott City of Longview Councilmember

Before he was a board member, Bartness proudly wore the Red Coat of a Chamber Ambassador.

Marc Silva Columbia Bank Ted Sprague Cowlitz Economic Development Council Michael Vorse Minuteman Press Dennis Weber Cowlitz County Commissioner

6 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021



1920-2020 portofkalama.com

Did you know something fishy happened here in Kalama? Something fishy happened where the Port of Kalama sits today. The Doty Fish Company was hatched in 1895. Built right on the Columbia River, fishermen could unload their catch directly to the processing plant taking advantage of the deep-water port—a feature the Port of Kalama capitalizes on to this day. Through the intersection of the river and rail, the world got a taste of Pacific salmon. Yum! We hope you’ll enjoy this entertaining video celebrating our 100th birthday! Happy Centennial, Port of Kalama!


Business Toolbox Jerry D. Petrick

Certified Business Adviser

Time to work 'ON' your business


orking “IN” or “ON” your business…what is the difference? Why should I care?

When it comes to your business, there is a huge difference. A business owner needs to work more ON their business than IN it. Especially now if your business has been closed or is severely restricted due to the impacts of COVID-19. How can you tell if you are working IN your business or ON your business? Which of these activities best describe how you spend your time in your business? •

You make sales calls all day long.

You spend most of your afternoon fulfilling orders and responding to customer questions/issues.

You spend at least one night a week or an entire weekend day doing bookkeeping, payroll and other record keeping tasks.

If so, you are working IN your business. AND… You are working ON your business if… •

You invest mornings adjusting your business model to best fit your customer ideal customer profile.

You spend your afternoons scouting for talent, developing your current team, and providing the tools they need to thrive.

You dedicate part of one evening a week reviewing your financial reports, scanning for new business opportunities and markets, and ensuring your business is growing per your plans.

You may be thinking, “I am a one-person business. I do not have time to work ON my business – I have to work IN the business to keep the money coming in.”

How can you shift to working ON your business more versus focusing only on working IN your business? Spend Time Everyday Working ON Your Business: No matter how busy you are, you can carve out 5-10 minutes at the start or end of your day to take action to make your business stronger and more successful long-term. This could be doing some research on products, prospects, customers, competitors, industry trends, etc. You could refine your process for invoicing customers to speed cash flow. Engage an Adviser/Mentor/Coach: Even Michael Jordan had a coach – someone to help guide and reinforce the actions and behaviors leading to outstanding performance. If you do not already have someone beyond yourself discuss and strategize your business with you are likely limiting your success and that of your business. Set Basic Goals: Actively look for daily activities/processes you can make more effective/efficient. Would it be smart to outsource your bookkeeping services? Engaging an expert to perform your routine accounting functions – providing you with timely, accurate data and reporting with which to make business decisions. Are there software tools that would help your sales and customer management processes more impactful and consistent? Get started! Most businesses are started by technicians – people who are skilled at what they enjoy doing, and who figure they would rather work for themselves than for someone else. Most technicians assume that because they are proficient in the technical work of the business, they naturally understand how the business works. In truth, these are two very different activities and require different skills and knowledge. The entrepreneur MUST understand the distinction between the two. Building your business takes three distinct skill sets: 1. The entrepreneur – supplying the vision 2. The manager – provides systems and processes 3. The technician – supplies the output of goods or services

I have good news: working IN and working ON your business are not mutually exclusive! In fact, most successful business owners must work IN their business while they are working ON it (particularly in the beginning of transitioning from self-employment to creating an enterprise).

The typical business owner personality is:

Note: During this time of economic and public health uncertainty you may ONLY be able to work ON your busines – so strive to ensure you are making the best and highest use of your “‘downtime”. Part of your consideration may be to treat the much anticipated “reopening” of our economy as a “grand opening” for your business.

Sound familiar? Does this describe you or your business?

It might be out of necessity; your organization might be too lean for you to step out of the daily activities. Or you may need to go back “IN” for a period when it's time to improve your existing operations to stay competitive. Or you may love the technical work of your business so much that you do not ever want to give it up completely. 8 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

✓ 10 percent entrepreneur ✓ 20 percent manager ✓ 70 percent technician Consider this… Research indicates that a very good business builder would be: o 33 percent entrepreneur o 33 percent manager o 33 percent technician For more Petrick, see page 9

BANK BETTER with Business Online Banking “

Business Online Banking helps meet the needs of business owners, regardless of the company’s size. In addition to accessing accounts 24/7, business owners can also add users and customize permission levels for employees who manage accounts. We look forward to expanding our business services soon to provide even more ways to serve our business members’ needs!

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

Petrick from page 8

Ultimately, working ON your business is about your perspective. If you want to change your business, the first thing you need to do is to change the way you think about your business. It is likely that the thinking and approach you have used to start and operate your business “pre-pandemic” will require different strategies, techniques, and skills as we exit this highly restrictive phase of life with COVID-19. Be ready to seize the opportunities that are likely to emerge. It is very possible you will find your business has less/different competition when our economy reemerges. You GOT THIS! This article is based, in part, on the book E Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber and was prepared by Jerry Petrick, certified business adviser with the Washington State University (WSU) Small Business Development Center (SBDC). Jerry provides no-cost, confidential business advisory services by appointment. He can be reached via email jerry.petrick@wsbdc.org

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Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 9

Cowlitz County Commissioners Arne Mortensen

County Commissioner, District 1

Board signs resolution for better policies


he year 2020 may go down as one of the roughest in living memory, but I am worried that 2021 will be worse. From a temporary, appropriately fear driven, response

to the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, we became subjects of government mandates that continue in 2021 to decimate the economic foundation of our country, and hence our county. The various stages of lock-down and government programs meant

The average grant value in Rounds 1 and 2 is $9,800, and the average grant value in Rounds 3 and 4 is $13,900. The maximum grant value in Rounds 1 and 2 is $35,000, and $40,000 in Rounds 3 and 4. The original rules were that the money was not to be used to supplant regular income, but to support changes that were driven

to help, made business in 2020 risky and unfulfilling for most local

by COVID-19 accommodations. Of course, that leaves room for

businesses except a few, who had serendipity on their side. Various

interpretation, but it clearly does not solve the problem for the

rules contributed to the problems and confusions and frustrations.

many businesses which were forced to marginalize their ability

The weak quality of the data on COVID-19 and arbitrary

to serve clients because of constraints on occupancy, or outright

regulations resulted in the public losing confidence in government

forced closure and fines.

handling of the problem. One short term highlight was the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act which the cities, school districts, and the County received. It is short term because this money cannot possibly bridge the damage done to businesses, and the recovery process is yet in the future. Furthermore, this money adds to an already critically large federal debt, and at best, this is borrowing from the future, which arguably we will not be able to

Although there may be more “free� money given out in 2021, the senseless destruction of business continues into 2021, so we can expect peaceful civil disobedience, which began in 2020, to carry over into 2021. For our part, on Jan. 12 the BoCC passed resolution 21-005, which we hope is the start of some better policies. The resolution is available on the County website. The header is shown below:

pay back. Restoring business is the highest priority in 2021. Overall, in 2020, the County, with the able help of the Cowlitz Economic Development Council (CEDC), dispensed about $4.4 million to local businesses of CARES Act money, via four separate award groups. The groups were the result of the County figuring the details of the rules governing the use of the money, learning about operating the grant programs, and the changing regulations. Added to that was the allocation of a second round of CARES

And the resolved part is shown below:

money to the County. The cities received some CARES money also, but it was a modest amount. The five school districts received their own allocation of CARES money, totaling about $3.95 million. The schools overspent their allocation, and the Board of County Commissioners (BoCC), with a split vote, granted them about $655,000 to help them cover that shortfall. I believe the County CARES money rightfully belonged to the businesses trying to survive. 10 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

I wish you a prosperous 2021.


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Cowlitz-Wahkiakim Council of Governments Bill Fashing

Executive Director

CWCOG loan opportunities to data collection


ongview Revolving Loan Fund

The Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments (CWCOG), in partnership with the City of Longview, has received (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding through the Economic Development Administration to supplement the existing Longview Revolving Loan Fund. An additional $540,000 is available for small business loans within the City of Longview and surrounding areas. Loans are for new and existing firms desiring to initiate or expand operations in the community. Projects must be within or near the Longview city limits, and the city council may approve loans outside of the city limits. This lending program is intended for businesses that cannot otherwise obtain traditional bank financing. These loans provide access to capital as gap financing to enable small businesses to grow and generate new employment opportunities with competitive wages and benefits. Anyone desiring to participate in the program can contact the CWCOG staff and request an application. Since the program’s inception, over $2.2 million has been loaned creating and retaining over 630 jobs in the community. A complete application and supporting materials are needed for consideration.

available via the CWCOG website for any business to access. Results of the information provided will be distributed through the website and through this newsletter on a quarterly basis. The concept is modeled after the U.S. Census Bureau’s Small Business Pulse Survey (SBPS) that started in April 2020. The SBPS, which has provided near real-time information on how small-single-location-employer businesses have been faring since late April when it began collecting data, has now concluded its third phase. The program has solicited business expectations about the future of the economy, customer demand, and the availability of supplies and inputs impact key decisions from hiring to investing. The following chart shows business expectations regarding operations from a recent census release.

This program is for serious Longview business borrowers facing lending challenges. Funds are intended to create new jobs, spur economic activity, and strengthen the economy. If your business needs additional funding and has been turned down by a traditional lender, please consider an application. The Longview Revolving Loan Fund application and program guidelines are available online at www.cwcog.org or by request at: CWCOG at Administration Annex / 207 North 4th Ave., Kelso, Wash., 98626, 360-577-3041. Questions may be directed to Bill Fashing at CWCOG by regular mail at the address above, via email to bfashing@cwcog.org, or by FAX at 360-214-3425. Local Business Pulse Survey The CWCOG will begin conducting a monthly Business Pulse Survey to solicit information on the local economy beginning in February. You can find the survey at www.cwcog.org if you are interested in sharing your business experience. Surveys will be mailed to 100 area businesses each month and will also be 12 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

About the CWCOG The Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Council of Governments is a governmental planning and services agency composed of local governments in southwest Washington state. Its board consists of representatives from Cowlitz and Wahkiakum counties but it 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. The CWCOG serves as a Census Affiliate.

Business Connection Advertising Rates Effective January 1, 2020 Kelso-Longview Business Connection monthly newsletter is published the first of each month, posted electronically on our website and over 6,400 emailed to 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

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All ads include full color and any design work. Deadline is the 21st of the month prior to publication. Digital files: PDF is preferred. JPEG accepted at high resolution(at least 300 dpi). Non-Members of the Kelso-Longview Chamber of Commerce, please add 30% to above rates. To advertise or request additional information please contact: Amy Hallock at 360-423-8400 or ahallock@kelsolongviewchamber.org or CEO Bill Marcum at 360-423-8400 or bmarcum@kelsolongviewchamber.org

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Workforce Southwest Washington Darcy Hoffman

Director of Business Services

The business case for childcare


ompanies cannot successfully operate if their employees do not have affordable, dependable childcare. Workforce Southwest Washington (WSW) has brought Cowlitz County businesses together with leaders in childhood education and early learning, and childcare providers to understand the extent of the childcare crisis and to develop a strategy to increase childcare capacity to meet workforce needs. WSW retained Exigy Consulting to assist with the project. During the first phase, interviews were conducted to assess the demand for childcare, ascertain if efforts had been taken to address the lack of childcare availability and gauge the willingness of interviewees to participate in developing approaches to increase childcare capacity. The second phase of the project will be to develop a model for delivering additional childcare capacity that will be funded through a private-public partnership. WSW hopes to have the second phase completed in July.

absenteeism resulting from a breakdown in childcare coverage, according to a November 2020 report by Washington STEM and Washington Communities for Children. Additional findings from WSW’s report include: • The organizations interviewed employ in excess of 4,400 workers. Of that, stakeholders reported that on average 18.4 percent have experienced one or more challenges with childcare in the last 24 months.

The first phase findings of WSW’s “The Business Case for Childcare” report found:

• Those most affected were shift workers (20.8 percent), in healthcare (31.6 percent average of total) and manufacturing (13.8 percent average of total).

• 61 percent of interviewees indicated affordability was the principal challenge to their workforce securing childcare.

• 61.3 percent of stakeholders responded that childcare was a challenge prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

• 51.6 percent of respondents indicated childcare availability is a substantial concern.

Representatives of Kaiser Permanente, Youth and Family Link, Support for Early Learning and Families, Lower Columbia College, PeaceHealth, Educational Service District 112, Choice Regional Health Network, Educational Opportunities for Children and Families, and the Community Foundation for Southwest Washington are providing input and guidance as part of WSW's childcare Project Advisory Group.

• 32 percent of those interviewed would be willing to commit to providing resources to developing a solution to the childcare issue. • Nearly 42 percent of stakeholders stated childcare has impacted recruitment or retention, with the majority stating retention was the bigger of the two issues. Childcare is not a new concern or issue for a workforce development board to tackle. However, WSW’s approach – putting businesses in the lead and recommending they develop and help fund the solution – is different. “When a parent is unable to work due to lack of affordable and accessible childcare, it impacts not only the family but the employer and ultimately the economy,” said WSW CEO Kevin Perkey. “Businesses are struggling with employee recruitment and retention due to the childcare crisis. For the growth and survival of their organizations, companies need to be in the conversation and investing in the solution for their workforce.” Cowlitz businesses are not alone in struggling with employee recruitment and retention. Southwest Washington employers incurred costs of $83.5 million in 2019 due to employee 14 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

Funding for the project was provided through competitive grants WSW sought and received, including $52,560 from the Washington Department of Commerce and $32,408 from the Seattle Foundation. WSW contributed $25,000 of Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act funds to the endeavor. The Washington State Department of Commerce awarded $1.8 million in grants to 24 organizations. Grantees will receive approximately 38 percent of the award from state general funds administered by Commerce and a nearly 62 percent match from donors who supported the Safe Start fund for a Healthy Economic Transition and Recovery. Darcy Hoffman, director of business services for Workforce Southwest Washington can be reached at dhoffman@workforcesw. org, 360-608-4949.

Have a

for ART Valentine’s Basket Drawing All proceeds benefit the Chihuly Art for the Longview Public Library. Suggested ticket donation: $3 each or 2 for $5 Tickets available at Teague’s Interiors at 1315 Hudson, Longview, WA or make a donation on www.cowlitzart.org. Get your tickets soon! The basket drawing is Noon on Friday, Feb. 12 at Teague’s. Basket value is $200 and includes:

We’re sweet on these sponsors of the Heart for ART basket: • • • • • •

Gerrie Booth Storyboard Delights Teague’s Interiors Sue Lane Dianna K. Annin Columbia River Reader

Thank you for your support!

Variety of handmade chocolates Chocolate-lovers apron Cabinera red wine – reserve 2009 Wine glasses – including hand painted Wine accessories – aerator, cocktail forks, coasters and cocktail napkins #1 Guse’s gourmet coffee Red Swarovski crystal pencils Piano Demitasse-Newell Oler music CD The Art Renaissance Team (ART) is a committee of the Longview Public Service Group, a 501(c)3 nonprofit. Learn more about the permanent Chihuly art for the Longview Public Library at www.cowlitzart.org

City of Kelso

City of Longview

Andrew Hamilton

MaryAlice Wallis

City Manager

A chance to be a part of the change


fter the year we all experienced in 2020, everyone is looking forward to 2021 and figuring out what the new normal is. While that remains to be seen; what we do know is that a number of our local businesses and employees have been affected over the past 300 days and by the number of orders that have come down from the governor’s office. Senate Bill 5114, authored by Sen. John Braun (R) and Sen. Mark Mullet (D), was heard recently in the Senate Government and Elections committee. The bill intends to start the process of reopening the economy faster than the current Healthy Washington Roadmap. Hats off to our Sen. Jeff Wilson (R) who is a bill co-sponsor and someone who is making Cowlitz County voices heard by fighting the battle within the walls of the senate. When we look at how the chairman handled the hearing, we know there were more than 1,000 people who wrote supporting the bill and over 300 who signed up to testify. However, only 40 of those citizens were even given one minute to testify before they were cut off. As we know, normally people are given three or more minutes to voice their opinions. Of the 40 who did get to testify, one was a Cowlitz County business. Senate Bill 5114 removes the lockdown restrictions and effectively returns the responsibility to the businesses for their employee and customer safety. They can operate as long as they can show they can do safely limiting the spread of COVID-19. We know that restaurants specifically have not been shown to be the source of COVID-19 infections and should be allowed to reopen and govern the safety of their employees and customers themselves. So, let’s help our local businesses, service workers, and Sen. Wilson by getting involved. Since most of this session will be conducted online, below is some information on how you can do so: Watch a legislative hearing – https://www.tvw.org/ Testify in a committee – https://app.leg.wa.gov/csiremote Comment on a bill – https://app.leg.wa.gov/pbc/


Little things often make a big difference


t’s 2021. We begged for 2020 to be over quickly, and now we’re here in February 2021.

So, now what? Are there ways you wish to improve? Do it! Are there things you want to change? Give it a try! By nature, life is full of repeats and patterns. One of the great lessons in life is recognizing these recurring patterns and using the wisdom derived from that recognition to either make necessary course corrections, so as not to repeat negative patterns, or to “stay the course”, hoping to ensure favorable patterns come back around. There is always room for improvement and for learning something new. A simple reminder: It is often the littlest things that make the biggest differences. May I suggest some ideas? 1. Show up and be present. Simply put, this means to be intentional about your actions. You never really know what you might hear, what you may need to hear, or who may need to hear what you have to say. If 80 percent of success is measured by just “showing up”, you are nearly there! 2. While you are “present”, be a dot-connector. While communicating with others, use your listening skills to identify cues. Are there ways you can help if there is a need? Do you recognize a potential path to an answer you are seeking? Listening intently during discussions is valuable and may help you find an answer you are seeking in an unlikely place or conversation. 3. Be brave – Every. Single. Day. In the face of adversity, sometimes the anchors in our lives keep us going and give us strength. Recognize them and hold onto them if that’s what you need. Other times, it takes reaching out of our comfort zones and trying something new, meeting someone new, driving someplace different, or changing up the pattern if we aren’t getting where we want to go. At least go out and try a new ice cream flavor! 4. Most of all, act with integrity. “Integrity is one of the universal and timeless principles” (Stephen Covey). You can never go wrong by choosing right. I have found that people are most always kind and offer grace, even when our own best intentions go awry.

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 www.amadaseniorcare.com 360.952.3100 360.952.3100 www.amadaseniorcare.com www.amadaseniorcare.com 16 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

What a year 2020 was for all of us. I appreciate the privilege of serving as Longview’s 23rd mayor during these unprecedented times. While we all lost so much in that difficult year, and though the challenges are not all over, let’s not lose sight of the things – large and small – that we also gained through our trials and continuing perseverance. I have loved being your mayor and look forward to serving you in 2021. Here’s to a great new year!


Fri., April 2, 4 pm - 9 pm and Sat., April 3, 10 am - 8 pm

Cowlitz County Convention Center


Mount St Helens Event Sponsor



Logo on all marketing material as sQuatch Fest Sponsored by “Your Business Name” Named on all radio, print and social media advertising 10' x 10' booth space at the event Logo on website, Facebook, newsletter and print advertising 100 collectible tickets to event with lanyards

Hoffstadt Bluff Sponsor $2,500

• Logo on marketing material & social media • 25 tickets to attend both days • Display banner and booth space at event Hoffstadt Bluff Sponsor Options • Cornhole Tournament - Battle of the Borders • Kids’ Cave - logo on Kids’ Cave • Tickets - logo on back of tickets • Brew Mtn Beer Fest - banner in beer fest • Mug Sponsor - logo on mug • Decorations - banner in MSH room • Speaker Sponsor - banner on stage

Ape Cave Sponsor $500 • Logo on print ads • Exposure on social media • 5 tickets to sQuatch Fest Ape Cave Sponsor Options • Drink token - logo on token • Wristband - logo on wristband • ICE Sponsor

Columbia River Sponsor $1,000

• • • •

Logo on print ads, mention on social media Banner displayed at event 10 tickets to sQuatch Fest Vendor table

Columbia River Sponsor Options • Volunteer T-shirts - logo on back • Wine Glasses - logo on glass • Stage - banner on stage • Friday Night Speaker Dinner

Elk Meadow Sponsor $250 • Supporter of sQuatch Fest • Logo on print ads • 2 tickets to sQuatch Fest

Don’t delay! Register now for these sponsor opportunities!

Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce 105 N. Minor Rd Kelso, WA 98626 (360) 423-8400 www.kelsolongviewchamber.org

Kelso Public Schools

Longview Public Schools

Mary Beth Tack

Dan Zorn



Community grant a big winner for Kelso kids

Practicing safety to keep schools open

e got some great news in January. Youth and Family Link, in partnership with Kelso School District, has been awarded a 21st Century Community Learning Center grant through Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). The five-year grant will fund after school and summer programs at the five highest need schools in the district and will focus on a three-tier process to engage families and students in education, social emotional learning, community learning and connection services.

ll things considered, 2021 is off to a good start at Longview Public Schools. Our preschool and elementary students are back in hybrid in-person learning, the vaccine will soon be available to educational staff, and we are joining forces with Kelso and surrounding schools to kick off a community wide Safety Campaign focused on what is best for students.


This grant will serve Barnes, Catlin, and Wallace elementary schools, as well as Huntington and Coweeman middle schools. The overarching program goal is to develop strong academic and social skills in students and families, and create a stronger community bond through the process. The program allows for 55 regular attendees at each elementary school and 35 regular attendees at the middle school program during the school year; and 30 registered attending students during the summer program at elementary and middle schools. The three-tier process is intended to create a long-lasting positive effect on not only the students in the program, but their families, as well. • Tier one will focus on engaging high risk, low achieving students who are the most effected by academic injustice into the Afterschool Explorers program at the three highest need elementary schools and both middle schools in Kelso. • Tier two will focus on family services providing learning opportunities for parents, including but not limited to: access to basic education programs, parenting classes, provide substance abuse classes, and mentoring programs. • Tier three will focus on enriching the partnership between families, schools, and the community via monthly family nights, parent and student activity nights, and cultural learning activities to engage the Hispanic, Native American and Chuukeese populations. We are incredibly thankful for Kim Hogue and Corie Dow of Youth and Family Link for all the work they put in to secure this vital grant. And we’re excited to see the difference it makes for the Kelso community. 18 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021


I am happy to report that our preschool and elementary students returned to hybrid learning on Jan. 11. As I visited schools the morning of their return, it was evident the teachers were happy to have their students back in the classroom and the kids were abuzz with excitement as they got to return to a new normal. Our buses were running, food services were in full swing, and parking lots and playgrounds were full. Our staff and students endured a great deal in 2020, so it was especially nice to see the bright eyes peeking out over masks. All is going well in the elementary schools, which leads us to believe the same will hold true when we start hybrid in-person learning for our middle and high school students. The district scheduled the start of hybrid instruction for our secondary students for late January and early February; however, infection rates have kept climbing. The state recently changed the return to school guidelines, making it easier to bring students back for hybrid in-person learning. Despite this change, our infection rates skyrocketed after the holidays, which caused us to pause their return to school. It has become clear that schools need to step up and ask our communities to help get kids back in class. Fortunately, the vaccine has become available and is being rolled out. Many of the health care workers in our county have been vaccinated and our educational personnel are in line to receive the vaccine soon, which will help lower the COVID-19 infection rates. To date, a number of our district’s nurses have been vaccinated. The vaccine will play a critical role in lowering infection rates and keeping schools open. As I mentioned previously, Longview and Kelso schools have joined forces to start a community wide safety campaign to help us continue expanding the number of students we are able to bring back into our schools. We will be asking our community to do all they can to support our kids, so kids can get back to For more Longview Schools, see page 19

Longview Schools from page 18

in-person learning and remain there. To aid in this, we are asking the public to help us help our kids by following safety guidelines (wash hands, wear masks and social distance) while out in public. The more the community adheres to these guidelines, the sooner we will be able to bring all of our kids back to their schools. As reminders, you will be seeing posters around town and posts on district websites and social media highlighting our local students in clever and colorful scenes asking the public to wear their masks,

social distance, and wash their hands. Together, we can get our county’s infection rate much lower. We have done it in the past and we can do it again. As always, your continued support and consideration of our students is very much appreciated. Thank you for helping us, help our kids! Wishing you all a very safe and healthy 2021!

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

(360) 414-4101 www.twincitybank.com

There’s a Difference. Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 19

Lower Columbia College Chris Bailey President

Local community colleges: Part of the solution in economic recovery


ur 34 local community and technical colleges play a key role in serving the diverse students and communities in our state and in restarting our economy. These institutions

provide people of all ages and backgrounds the skills to reinvent

education opportunities for the people of Washington. The Workforce Education Investment Act (WEIA) expanded financial aid, making college free for many, invested in Guided Pathways, an

themselves and create a strong workforce—especially the people who

initiative to strengthen advising, counseling and career paths, and

have been most affected by COVID-19.

improved colleges’ capacity to hire and retain faculty who teach

Whether you are an unemployed worker seeking retraining for a better life, or a recent high school graduate who wants a career, not just a job, community and technical colleges are “the smart choice.” We are affordable and offer high wage careers with benefits for those

our students in nursing, welding, diesel technology, machining, information technology, engineering, and many others. The current legislative session could add significantly to LCC’s impact on the future of the region. Several years ago, Lower

who are willing to put in the work. In 2019, the Legislature made a commitment to support higher

TRUSTED Service is the difference!

high-demand programs. This supports high-wage programs for


Most in-depth title plant in the county.

Columbia College submitted a proposal for a new vocational building. The governor’s proposed capital budget includes an appropriation for the design of LCC’s proposed 55,000-square-foot vocational building. Of course, this is the governor’s proposal and we have to await appropriation from the Legislature for this to become a reality. There is a strong push for these capital projects as a stimulus to our state’s economy. The normal process is for the Legislature to appropriate design money in one biennium and then construction money in the next biennium. The project replaces three older, smaller buildings, including the current 60-year-old vocational building, built

Pam McCormick Kristy Norman Bookkeeper Office Manager

Escrow Officer

Megan Wheatley

Steve Quaife

Marketing Director

Escrow Officer

for lower enrollments and not meeting modern industry standards. The proposed project would not only create immediate local jobs in the construction phase, but would create a state-of-the-art skills center for current jobs and jobs for generations to come. Lower Columbia College will be a part of the solution to rebuilding our local economy, post-pandemic, and in providing long-term

Jason Hanson Title Officer

Darren Plank Title Officer

Cooper Hart Title Officer

Leah Stanley Title Officer

Accurate Reliable Timely Locally Owned 1159 14th Avenue , Longview, WA 98632 360.423.5330 www.cowlitztitle.com 20 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

opportunity for our local citizens. If properly funded, community colleges are a great mechanism for economic growth and community prosperity. LCC has certainly delivered in the recent pandemic and will be a major driver of economic development in the years ahead. LCC Proud!

2021 ___________________ January 12: OPEN _______________ February 9: March 9: JoJo CoCo & Wander April 13: Teri’s May 11: Cowlitz Title June 8: Port of Longview July 13: American Workforce August 10: Rotary Clubs September 14: ServPro 10 year Anniversary October 12: Farm Dog Bakery Life Works November 9: Capital National Title December 14: (Holiday Mixer)

Interested in hosting a Business After Hours in 2021? Contact the Chamber at 360-423-8400 or email ahallock@kelsolongviewchamber.org

Calendar February 2021 Sunday







1 Legislative


3 Chamber Education Foundation, 8am, ZOOM

4 Chamber




8 Legislative

9 Chamber






15 Chamber







22 Legislative

23 Chamber





Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Office Closed, Presidents Day

Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Executive Board, Noon, ZOOM

Board Meeting, Noon, ZOOM

Ambassadors, 8am, ZOOM


March 2021 Sunday







1 Legislative


3 Chamber

4 Chamber




8 Legislative

9 Chamber






15 Legislative







22 Legislative

23 Chamber






29 Legislative



Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Briefing, 7am, ZOOM

Executive Board, Noon, ZOOM Business After Hrs

Board, Noon, ZOOM

22 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

Education Foundation, 8am, ZOOM

Ambassadors, 8am, ZOOM

Longview Downtowners Lindsey Cope

President; also Vice President Cowlitz Economic Development Council and Facilitator Kelso Small Business

Shop local Saturday once a month


he Cowlitz Economic Development Council (CEDC) and its partners invite everyone to shop Cowlitz County for monthly Shop Local Saturday events every fourth Saturday of the

month. February’s Shop Local Saturday event will take place Feb. 27. Some businesses will feature specials on this day and others would just love to see you. Every month we will host a Facebook event with updated information for county-wide businesses located within the event discussion at www.facebook.com/cowlitzedc and the Longview Downtowners will also host an event specific to the downtown Longview businesses at www.facebook.com/

encourage you to check with the businesses you are interested in directly. If you are a Cowlitz County business that is interested in being listed in the monthly shop local events for 2021 you can sign up under Business Assistance at www.cowlitzedc.com. You do not have to be a member of the CEDC to participate. Please mark your calendars: Feb. 27, March 27, April 24, May 22, June 26, July 24, Aug. 28, Sept. 25, Oct. 23, Nov. 25 and Dec. 18 (3rd Saturday due to Christmas).

downtownlongviewwa. We will post those who have confirmed

For further questions and inquires, please contact me, CEDC vice

their participation and other details inside the event discussion

president at cope@cowlitzedc.com. Don’t forget to shop local, shop

monthly. Please note that hours for businesses will vary and we

small, shop Cowlitz County!

FEBRUARY IS FRIENDS MONTH Support your historic theatre by becoming a

Friend of the

Columbia Theatre Your tax-deductible gift helps ensure that: we continue to bring you world-class entertainment makes our education and outreach programs possible preserves the community's historic landmark creates life long memories through the arts For more information on becoming a Friend of the Columbia Theatre please call the box office at (360) 575-8499 or email: info@columbiatheatre.com www.columbiatheatre.com Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 23

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

Many services offered during pandemic will find a permanent home at the library


o borrow and adapt the famous words of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, “2020 is a year which will go down in infamy.” Of course, the big event was the COVID-19

pandemic, which swept across the world in March, continues even now, and clearly will be affecting our lives in 2021. I have read many authors, and heard numerous speakers, who say that in every challenge is an opportunity. Trying to provide library services to the community while being functionally closed to the public was certainly a challenge for us here at the Longview Public Library. However, out of this challenge has arisen some excellent ideas and programs that not only help us get through this crisis but I believe will help the library, and of course, the community into the future. First came drive-through service where patrons could put materials on hold, staff would gather the items, check them out and bag them. Patrons could then come at their leisure during our

possible. Thanks go to ALL of the library staff who have been creative, flexible and working tirelessly to make this all happen and always with a smile on their face. I would especially like to thank Becky Standal who has taken the lead on much of what you have seen. I would also like to thank Daniel Tate and Austin Brigden for all they have done. I need to thank the Friends of the Longview Library and the Longview Library Foundation who have helped fund some of these new programs and the costs related to them. Finally, I would like to thank you all for being patient with us throughout this situation and for the kind words and thanks that you have bestowed upon this. Thank you for your support both now and in the future. Together, we will make the Longview Public Library a library serving you better today and tomorrow. One of our continuing services is our partnership with SCORE.

drive-through hours and pick them. We have since moved this

For several years now, we have had small business-related

to just putting them on hold to be picked up when the patrons

courses at the library featuring various small business experts on

arrive. It is not unlike pre-COVID, just located at our back door

particular subjects. The pandemic has moved the classes online

instead of the public service desk.

where they seemingly have found a home. Below is the schedule

We created online story times and other online programming including a weekly garden feature, and craft videos where the

for 2021. The first several will definitely be online and we will see about the rest.

public could pick up craft kits, scan a code and see the video on how to do the craft. We created Library Samplers, which allow patrons to give some ideas of what types of materials they like, and in what format, and we select them, check them out and the

Feb. 20, 4-5:30 p.m. – Getting Back on Track: How to Achieve

Goals in Difficult Times

patrons come to the library drive through and pick them up. We

March 18, 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m. – Selling for Small Business

have also set up mobile printing where you can send your print

March 20, 10-11:30 a.m. – Employee to Entrepreneur: Build, Buy

job to the library printer, we will print it off and you can pick it up. These were all fantastic ideas and developments that will continue even when we open our doors again. You can expect to see

or Franchise? April 17, 10-11:30 a.m. – So You Want to Start a Nonprofit?

hybrid programs from the staff that will feature live and recorded

May 15, 10-11:30 a.m. – Simple Steps for a Well Run Business

information and presentations. Drive-through programs will

June 19, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. – Avoiding Workplace Violence

continue as well because this service has been so popular. I am sure there will be even more before this crisis has ended. This is just the beginning of a new and improved Longview library that will continue to serve the community in every way 24 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

Aug. 21, 10-11:30 a.m. – Strategic Pricing for Small Business Sept. 18, 10-11:30 a.m. – What's the Right Business Entity for You? Dec. 4, 10-11:30 a.m. – Small Business Succession Planning

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

Business Association with opportunities to promote trade through Chamber socials,

Look Who Joined in January The Recovery Village Ridgefield Jordan Katz 888 S. Hillhurst Road Ridgefield, WA 98642 360-727-3638

special events and committee participation. • Annual Meeting and Banquet • Networking Events • Committee Participation • Business Contacts • Quarterly Membership Meetings • Civic Representation • Monthly Business After Hours

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.

Our focus is on your business.

• 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’re committed to serving your banking needs, providing capital and guiding you in taking advantage of every tool we have at our disposal to help your business. Contact one of our business banking experts or visit HeritageBankNW.com to learn more. Kelso | 1000 South 13th Ave. 360.423.7800 Longview | 927 Commerce Ave. 360.423.9800 Equal Housing Lender | Member FDIC

HeritageBankNW.com |

Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 25

News & Events

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

Parks and Recreation February Heart and Sole fun run goes virtual

Due to outdoor gathering restrictions, City of Longview Parks and Recreation annual Heart and Sole 5K is going virtual this year. This is a great opportunity to get your family together for some exercise and fun during Presidents Day weekend. Proceeds benefit Parks and Recreation’s Teen Program summer day trips. How does virtual work? Participants will have three days to complete one lap around Lake Sacajawea. Choose the best day that works for you and your family. Event Details

committee, Washington State had the fifth highest business closure rate in the U.S. from March 1 to Sept. 15. Of the 4,975 businesses in the state that closed during this period, 3,062 (62 percent) closed permanently. The report lays out a series of recommendations for rebuilding an economy that works for everyone who calls Washington home. The report offers committee recommendations for various aspects and sectors of our state’s economy. According to the report these recommendations are based on testimony, data and perspectives of the presenters heard by the committee over the past 6-7 months. They are:

Dates: Feb. 12, 13, 14 Time: Any time during the start and end date Fee: $10 run/walk; $15 for long sleeve cotton shirt Shirt Deadline: Feb. 2 at 5 p.m. Event Registration Deadline: Feb. 10, 5 p.m. Ages: All ages (kids 8 and younger are free with a paying adult) Location: Lake Sacajawea Park path A finish line photo booth will be at the Hemlock Plaza area all three days from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. When you are finished running or walking, come on over and take your picture at the photo booth and send the photo to us so we can post it. We will even mail you a copy. Packet Pick-up: Curbside pickup on Feb. 11 from noon-5 p.m. at the recreation office, 2920 Douglas St. We will be watching for you, please stay in your car and wear a mask. If you cannot pick up on the Feb. 11, packets will be available again Feb. 16 from noon-5 p.m. Register here

How will Washington state recover economically?

Written by Renée Sunde, President and CEO/Inside Washington Retail Shared by Bill Marcum, Kelso-Longview Chamber CEO Senate Special Committee Releases Blueprint It’s now week 3 of the 2021 legislative session and our team is navigating the happenings through computer screens and smartphones. The pace has not slowed as we continue to live our lives through zoom and interact in very new ways. Of note, this week the Senate Special Committee on Economic Recovery released its Blueprint for Recovery. The committee was formed in May of 2020 and is comprised of seven bipartisan members whose primary job is to look at and evaluate how COVID-19 and the state business closures impacted our state and regional economies. According to a survey presented to the 26 | Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021

Focus on People at Risk of an Immediate Housing, Food, Childcare or Job Crisis The Legislature must take action to help people get back to work and support employers so that they can continue to provide jobs that families need to support themselves. This point speaks to implementing policies that keep workers from being stranded on unemployment. Relief for Small Businesses, Supporting Hospitality, Leisure The hospitality and leisure industry has no doubt been the hardest hit as a result of closures. In September, it was reported that nearly 5,000 businesses had closed and 60 percent permanently. This number has skyrocketed with the additional and long-term closures endured since early December. The report outlines a long list of recommendations that include fixed cost assistance and some measure of regulatory relief to small businesses as they recover. Suggestions included: Mitigating burdens of UI rate increases •

Increasing funding for programs to encourage entrepreneurship

Strengthening the economic development ecosystem

Support the Aerospace and Manufacturing Sectors

As a major employer in Washington state, with trade uncertainties, pandemic related global impacts and the grounding of the 737 Max, Boeing and Washington’s aerospace industry have been significantly impacted by the pandemic. Report recommendations included working to diversify the sector with innovative space industry programs such as SpaceX and Amazon’s satellite program. Also outlined were how tax incentives and export assistance may be important to strengthen the sector in the coming year. For more News, see page 27

News from page 26

Strengthening Healthcare Security

Antidote Tap House sets opening date

There is nothing like a health care crisis to highlight areas for improvement. Health security remains a vital component of maintaining a vibrant economy that benefits both employers and employees. Experts testified that healthcare security is critical to entrepreneurship and efficient labor markets.

for second location After some renovations to add its personal touch, Antidote Tap House was schedued to open a second location in Woodland Feb. 1. “This new location, on Atlantic Avenue, gives us the opportunity

Expanding Internet Access

to cross paths with south Cowlitz County residents, and the many

The committee agreed that access to broadband and high-speed internet access will be critical across the entire state among all social economic groups to support education and business recovery and expand jobs and opportunities for all Washingtonians. The report offered a list of recommendations that included supporting public/private cooperative efforts and prioritizing unserved areas and low-income households.

visitors traveling the I-5 corridor,” co-owner Kelli Busack said in a

The SCER report concluded that in addition to targeting the hardest-hit workers and small businesses, expanding health care and internet access as well as investing in aerospace and manufacturing are critical components to long-economic recovery.

Amidst the current mandates, Antidote Tap House SoCo will not

press release. “We are thankful for the tremendous support over the last 3-1/2 years, and we are eager to introduce Antidote’s 18 rotating taps, Nitro included, handcrafted cocktails, and excellent service in a family-friendly space where all are welcome (fur babies too!).”

be hosting an opening party or live music, but is providing open air dining, along with heated and covered, outdoor dining.

“PeaceHealth saved my life.” Chris Wills, Sudden Cardiac Arrest Survivor PeaceHealth St. John Medical Center is recognized as a regional leader in heart care by the Foundation for Health Care Quality. Learn more: peacehealth.org/longview-heart

Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 27

Tune in to…

Your Chamber Connection Recorded on Wednesdays 11:00 am to 12:00 noon Listen at 6:00 pm KEDO 1400 AM or 99.1 FM Featuring your hosts: Carey Mackey - Red Canoe Credit Union Karen Sisson Shawn Green - Longview Kelso Servpro Marc Silva - Columbia Bank

The Kelso Longview Chamber of Commerce would like to THANK the following loyal members for renewing their partnership with us this February. Budget Blinds of Longview Columbia Bank - Longview Branch a

Columbia Funeral Service Columbia River Carpet One DeFrancisco Lampitt and Brado PS DSU Peterbilt Fischer Insurance Agency, Inc. Scott Fischer, State Farm Agent GL Booth – JG Davis & Associates Green Hills Crematory - Cascade NW Funeral Chapel Kay Green Lower Columbia Contractors Association


Your Chamber Connection EVERY Wednesday on KEDO 1400AM

Join our hosts Carey Mackey, Red Canoe Credit Union; Karen Sisson; Shawn Green, ServPro Longview/Kelso and Marc Silva, Columbia Bank for local guests and current events. Would you like an opportunity to be on Your Chamber Connection? Contact Bill or Amy at the Chamber 360-423-8400.

a Debra did not let a photo bomber distract her from telling us

what's new at the Broadway Gallery. b Joanna, the JoJo in JoJo + CoCo Boutique shared information about their Crate Club safely behind the acrylic barrier in our studio. Stream Your Chamber Connection live at www.kedoam.com

Signature Transport, Inc Summerland Catering Services Teague's Interiors

Kelso Longview Business Connection | February 2021 | 29