Journal of Business - November 2023

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November 2023 Volume 22 | Issue 11

Desire to help those with addiction leads to new book debut, spurs recovery center By Sara Schilling


Pit Bull Pen expanded to help more dogs but it’s already out of room Page A27

Business profile

Tri-Cities phlebotomist makes house calls for blood draw services Page A42

Real Estate & Construction

Want your own island? Here’s your chance Page B1

NOTEWORTHY “There are plenty of players out there. Reaction has been unreal.” -Christopher Johnson, owner of Desert Bluffs Poker Club

Page A11

Michele Gerber’s son, Jim, gave the best bear hugs. He was a tall, strong guy, and he’d lift his petite mother high in the air. “I’d practically fly over his shoulder,” Gerber said with a laugh. Jim has been gone nine years now, although he comes to life when Gerber tells stories about him – a handsome, gregarious, loving son and father who died at age 36 after years spent riding the roller coaster of opioid Michele Gerber addiction. Gerber was there with him through it all, fighting to help him. She’s still fighting now – to make sure others struggling in the same way find happier outcomes. Gerber is a founder of the Benton Franklin Recovery Coalition, an advocacy group that’s played a key role in the behavioral health and substance use disorder recovery facility in the works in Kennewick. And she’s written a new book, “Witness to Addiction: My Son’s Journey and How Each Person Can Fight America’s Opioid Epidemic,” that tells Jim’s story and shares the wisdom, insight and knowledge about addiction that she gained the hard way. Her goal with the book is to enlighten and empower. “The idea is to give tools and actions that every person can use,” Gerber said. “I don’t believe this can be solved by law enforcement, drug interdiction, so-called supply side. Those are things we ought to vote for and work on, but I don’t think they alone can do it. This book is to empower every person.”

A difficult loss Jim first experimented with drugs as a teen. Then after high school, he moved to Sun Valley, Idaho, and worked as a snowboard instructor and uGERBER, Page A12

Photo by Sara Schilling Ken Primus is director of World Relief Tri-Cities based in Richland. The nonprofit provides a variety of services, from greeting refugees at the airport upon arrival, to setting up apartments, helping navigate social services and assisting with employment. As the office has increased its pace and added staff, it also expanded its Richland office.

Richland-based nonprofit expands to ramp up efforts to resettle refugees By Sara Schilling

Ken Primus spent 28 years in the U.S. Army, and his service took him all over the world, including to Iraq and Afghanistan. He worked in special operations and civilian affairs and that meant part of his job was going into villages, sharing tea and conversation, and trying to make connections. In some ways, that’s still his job – even though he’s back home in the Tri-Cities. Primus took on the role of director of the local branch of World Relief, a refugee resettlement agency. He’s led the Richland-based office through the uncertainty of Covid-19, a dip in refugee num-

bers and now See pages A30a surge that’s 31 for the area’s led to an oflargest socialfice expansion service nonprofits. and significant growth in staff numbers. And just like in his Army days, he aims to build connections and do good. “I know this is where God wants me to be,” Primus said. World Relief is a Christian organization – one of nine agencies around the country that works with the U.S. Department of State to resettle refugees who’ve fled their home countries because of war, genocide, natural disaster or similar trauuWORLD RELIEF, Page A31

Pasco entrepreneur takes a shot at developing his own tequila brand By Jeff Morrow

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

The sleek bottles of a sipping liquor that spilled from the mind of a Pasco man dreaming of launching a tequila business will be ready to pour into glasses next month. That’s when 6,000 bottles of Tony Maya’s double-distilled tequila will debut. Some four years in the making, Tequila de Maya is poised to step out into the spotlight of success, thanks to Maya’s efforts. The youthful looking 45-year-old is a 1996 Pasco High School grad who grew up on the east side of Pasco. He’s served on the parks and recreation boards in Pasco

and Richland, and as vice president for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. He’s run for a city council seat, and he’s worked for Franklin County. Tony Maya Currently, Maya is the vice president of operations for Martinez Trucking in Pasco, where he’s been the last five years. But it’s his latest venture that may turn out to be his biggest journey: branding his own tequila. uTEQUILA DE MAYA, Page A4

Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business 8524 W. Gage Blvd., #A1-300 Kennewick, WA 99336






PNW clean hydrogen hub selected for federal funding By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

The U.S. Department of Energy has picked the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Association’s PNWH2 Hub as one of the seven regional clean hydrogen hubs designed to kickstart clean hydrogen production in the country, cut down on carbon dioxide emissions and create tens of thousands of good-paying jobs. Several projects are proposed as part of the PNWH2 Hub, including Atlas Agro’s $1 billion fertilizer plant in the North Horn Rapids Industrial Park in Richland. The plant would produce green fertilizer from air, water and renewable energy, and officials have estimated it would create up to 235 full-time jobs locally, plus hundreds more during construction and more than 1,000 indirect and induced jobs.

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland is lending its expertise across several fields of study to support the PNWH2 Hub. PNNL’s Daniel Gaspar serves as a senior technical advisor to the PNWH2 consortium. “It’s important to evaluate the carbon impact of hydrogen production from the moment it’s produced to the moment it’s used, or what’s called cradle-to-gate emissions,” said Gaspar, a PNNL chemist with expertise in clean hydrogen and sustainable fuels. “PNNL is helping the Pacific Northwest projects determine their lifecycle impacts, including a framework to measure other impacts besides greenhouse gas emissions.” PNNL experts are also providing economic analyses and evaluations of hydro-

gen production, integration with the electrical grid, and other areas as the region builds out a clean hydrogen economy. The Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs Program includes $7 billion to establish the seven hubs and is funded through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The other hubs selected by the Department of Energy are in the Midwest, MidAtlantic, Heartland, Gulf Coast, California and Appalachia. Pacific Northwest leaders celebrated the inclusion of PNWH2 Hub. “Washington state and our many partners in this effort got here today because we have the commitment to innovation, nation-leading climate policies and economic bona fides to build even more clean energy resources here in Washington,” said Washington Gov. Jay Inslee in a statement.

“This hub will be another example that the transition to all renewable energy is not only saving our planet but contributing to robust economic growth. The projects in this hub will support thousands of new jobs in Washington and the Northwest, while slashing emissions in sectors such as heavy-duty transportation, maritime, agriculture, and industrial operations,” Inslee said. PNWH2 Hub, which is estimated to create or support more than 10,000 good-paying jobs, will be eligible to receive up to $1 billion in federal funding in four phases over nine years, according to the state Department of Commerce. Final funding and scope negotiations will start in the fall and the first phase will kick off early next year. Go to:

Tri-Cities franchise owner earns companywide honor – for second time By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

IHOP selected a Tri-Cities franchise owner as its 2022 Franchisee of the Year – and it’s not the first time the owner has earned recognition. Susan Mendenhall, owner of the IHOPs in Kennewick and in Pasco, received the award Oct. 17 in Pasadena, California, at the brand’s 2023 Global Franchisee Conference. This marks Mendenhall’s second time receiving the honor. She earned the award in 2018, and IHOP notes it is the first time a female franchisee has received it twice. Each year, IHOP recognizes one of its franchisees for all-around leadership


State launches offshore wind supply chain initiative

Washington state announced a new initiative to manufacture and distribute components the offshore wind power industry will require. The new offshore wind supply chain campaign aims to position the state to lead the development of next-genera-

excellence. Mendenhall makes a proactive commitment to serving her guests and larger community and is a true example of exemplary leadSusan Mendenhall ership, as she is involved in local business associations, schools and clubs throughout the Tri-Cities area, IHOP said in a news release. “IHOP’s 100% franchised system of hard-working and dedicated franchisees is just as crucial for our business as it is critical in helping shape the inviting

IHOP experience,” said Jay Johns, IHOP president, in a statement. “We are proud to celebrate and honor Susan Mendenhall, who continues to pave the way for other franchisees through her leadership, warmth and impressive entrepreneurial spirit. Susan truly embodies our mission of serving more joy everyday through active community involvement, ultimately establishing her IHOP restaurants as favorite local dining establishments.” Mendenhall, a member of the IHOP family for more than 20 years, has been a mentor and trained many team members, watching their journeys progress from server to general manager – including some of her own family members.

Not only does Mendenhall’s peoplefirst approach set the tone for what guests can expect when they visit her IHOP restaurants, but she also yielded double-digit positive traffic and comp sales in 2022, IHOP said. “The joy that comes across our guests’ faces is what makes my day,” Mendenhall said. “I believe that treating guests and team members as if they are a part of our family is what sets IHOP apart and keeps people coming back every day.” Mendenhall serves on IHOP’s Franchisee Leadership and Menu committees, which are a voice for the broader franchisee community to advise on the brand’s strategy and menu direction.

tion offshore wind technology, creating manufacturing jobs at home while reducing emissions everywhere.

including products for aviation and aerospace, medical and electric machinery, recreation equipment, wood products and other goods. The land down under is the state’s 19th largest export partner.

domains of two businesses and their owner after they sent hundreds of thousands of deceptive texts and emails targeting Washington businesses and nonprofits. The large-scale text and email scheme directed businesses to a website link where they were charged $200 to file annual reports with the Secretary of State. The businesses are EFile Business Inc. and Online Filing LLC.

PNNL officials join governor on trade trip to Australia Pacific Northwest National Laboratory officials and other industry leaders joined Gov. Jay Inslee on a state trade mission to Australia Nov. 1-11. The state exported $772 million worth of goods to Australia last year,

Court shuts down websites targeting small businesses The state attorney general’s office won a court order to shut down the websites and suspend the internet

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– STAFF – Kristina Lord Executive Editor 509-344-1261 Sara Schilling Reporter 509-344-1286 Tiffany Lundstrom Associate Publisher for Sales 509-344-1271 Chad Utecht Advertising Account Manager 509-344-1274 Vanessa Guzmán Production Manager 509-344-1278 Erin Landon Business Assistant 509-344-1285 Rachel Visick News Assistant / Researcher 509-344-1281 Paul Read Group Publisher 509-344-1262

– UPCOMING – DECEMBER Year in Review Energy specialty publication Lists: Top SBA lenders Commercial Real Estate Firms JANUARY Legal Architecture & Engineering Lists: Largest Law Firms Largest Engineering Firms The Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business, a publication of Mid-Columbia Media Inc., is published monthly and delivered at no charge to identifiable businesses in Pasco, Richland, West Richland, Kennewick, Prosser and Benton City. Subscriptions are $27.12 per year, including tax, prepayment required, no refunds. Contents of this publication are the sole property of Mid-Columbia Media Inc. and can not be reproduced in any form without expressed written consent. Opinions expressed in guest columns and by advertisers do not necessarily reflect the opinions of staff, other columnists or other advertisers, nor do they imply endorsement by staff, columnists or advertisers. Every effort will be made to assure information published is correct; however, we are not liable for any errors or omissions made despite these efforts.

Tequila de Maya’s bottle has a sleek, lean look, which has gained notice in an industry that emphasizes branding. The business is steadily gaining momentum. The state of Washington approved Maya’s liquor license to operate as his own distributor in September. He’s working with legendary boxer Roy Jones Jr. on endorsements. His first TV commercial comes out around Thanksgiving, with his boss, Johnny Martinez of Pasco, doing the voice-over. It’ll air on Hulu and DirecTV. Maya considered a branding offer from Paris-based Pernod Ricard Group, which carries numerous brands, including Malibu Rum, Absolut Vodka and Kahlua. But he wanted to remain true to tequila’s – and his – Mexican roots. “They liked the bottle and the name. (But) our ancestors are Mayans,” he said. “I said no. My fiancée was pretty pissed off. But if it doesn’t work out, I can start over.” It’s proving to be the right decision, as he recently finished negotiations with Caesar’s Palace to carry the brand exclusively for the next six months in Las Vegas. After that, Maya said, he can sell it anywhere in Sin City.

Diving in Maya thought about starting a tequila business in 2019. “Then Covid hit in early 2020,” he said. “Liquor sales were going up. I was going through a divorce. I was looking for a way to start a retirement income. I have five kids and a grandkid. This could be a chance for generational wealth.” In addition to his full-time job at Martinez Trucking, Maya got a part-time job working for the U.S. Postal Service. He also helped his dad with mowing lawns and sprinkler blowouts. He saved all the money from the side gigs to invest in his Tequila de Maya. But here’s the thing – Maya didn’t know how to distill tequila. “I didn’t have a clue,” he admitted. But it didn’t matter. He found a way around that. Here’s a fun fact from The United States consumes more tequila than any other nation. Because of that, there are more than 100 tequila distilleries in Mexico making tequila for more than 1,800 brands. They are contract distilleries. They’ll make what you’re looking for – for a price, of course. “I just started picking up the phone and cold calling – 20 places, during Covid – and no one was picking up the phone. No one was in the office,” Maya said. “I about gave up.” Then one day, someone answered the phone at a company in Jalisco, Mexico.

– CORRECTION – • Banlin Construction co-owner Jasen Banta’s name was misspelled on page B8 in the October issue.

“It is the same company that Maya’s bottles feature makes Michael Jordan’s tequila,” “NOM 1438” on the back. Maya said. That would be Cincoro That stands for Norma Tequila. Oficial Mexicana, and the The company official said they number on each bottle tells could work with him. Maya agreed. where the tequila is made. “It was a good six months to get That is now required on all someone to respond to me,” he said. bottles of tequila made in “They responded to me, so I decided Mexico. I would work with them.” His father’s signature is Maya gets his agave plant – the on each bottle, as a way of key ingredient in tequila – thanking him for befrom this company. lieving in his son. His family has invested His sister Veron$75,000 into the enterica Maya is proud prise. Maya kicked in of him. “I have so $50,000, and his father inmuch to say about vested $25,000. my brother because He began receiving difhe has worked so ferent samples of tequilas in hard to make his mason jars from his distillown tequila and be ery partner – “I’ve got 16 to the first on this side 17 bottles at home” – and he of the state to do so,” would have his large family she said in an email taste-test. to the Tri-Cities Area “I’m not a big drinker myJournal of Business. self. I might have a beer or Maya is looking to two now and then. So they’d hire branding ambasgive me feedback,” Maya sadors to help make said. the venture a sucThe samples were in heavy cess as this often can rotation at family gatherings. be more important “Any reason to have a than how the tequila get-together – quinceaneras, tastes. weddings, birthday parties, Getting the disbarbecues – I’d have family tributor license from try the samples and they’d the state opens a give me feedback. I’d sit lot of possibilities, there and take notes. I was Maya said. looking for a more pre“In five years, mium sipping tequila that I see myself havI could do with private ing four options to sales.” sell. Tequila, rum, After about a year, vodka, and some Maya settled on Cristalibeers and wine,” no Anejo. Maya said. “I also It is distilled twice, then Courtesy Tequila de Maya want to work with spends at least 18 months Tequila de Maya debuts Dec. 1. Uber by having a in barrels. It is a high-end sipping tequila code that allows a Cristalino Anejo is the with a hint of vanilla finish drinker to get an fastest growing tequila cat- that’s made from agave plants Uber to take them egory in Mexico, accord- harvested, distilled and crafted home from where in Jalisco, Mexico. ing to they are drinking.” All that aside, Maya is excited about Ready to launch Maya’s first order of 6,000 bottles de- what’s to come. buts Dec. 1, with a retail price of about “This has been fun. A dream come $75 a bottle. At wholesale, Maya said the true,” he said. “And I’m most excited in cost is $8 a bottle. that I 100% control my business. I can “We hope to get it into Safeway and take it in any direction I want to.” Albertsons,” he said. Go to:

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Longtime Tri-City economist dies at age 71

A Tri-City based economist and Columbia Basin College professor died Oct. 19 at Kadlec Regional Medical Center in Richland. Dean Schau, 71, of Pasco, was a retired labor economist for the Washington Employment Security Department and a retired economics professor at CBC. He completed a bachelor’s at Central Washington University and his master’s degree at Washington State University in Pullman. He and his wife, Jean, recently celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary, according to his obituary. The couple divided their time between Pasco and Camano Island. Einan’s at Sunset handled arrangements.

Pasco lowers speed limit on Burns Road to 35 mph

The city of Pasco is reducing the speed limit on Burns Road west of Broadmoor Boulevard from 50 mph to 35 mph, effective Nov. 15. Burns Road recently was annexed into Pasco, and city officials saw a need to reevaluate the speed limit because of new residential growth and increased traffic. The city enlisted the traffic engineering firm CivTech to conduct a study.

Scholarships available for business owners, employees Business owners and employees in Pasco and Richland are eligible for schol-

arships for workforce training and certificates through Washington State University Tri-Cities’ Workforce Training Opportunities program. WSU Tri-Cities partnered with the cities of Pasco and Richland and Visit Tri-Cities to offer the scholarships. Several courses are offered, from wine tasting room training to fundamentals of business. Scholarships are granted on a first come, first served basis, so applying as soon as possible is encouraged. The deadline for the online, on-demand courses is Dec. 4. Go to: wsu-workforce-training-opportunities.

Recycling drop boxes removed from north Richland The recycling drop boxes located near

Spengler Street in North Richland on George Washington Way have been permanently removed due to persistent illegal dumping on the site. Alternative nearby recycling locations include the south end of the Uptown Shopping Center, and the Horn Rapids Landfill. Homeowners can also obtain a blue recycling container that is collected curbside every two weeks for $7.70 a month. Call 509-942-7700 or go to: ci.richland.

Washington wine legend dies at age 84

Washington wine legend Richard “Dick” Shaw died Oct. 27 at age 84. Shaw was a builder, developer, farmer and businessman who became an inves-


tor in a Mattawa vineyard in the 1980s, kicking off a fruitful wine career. Shaw Vineyards grows grapes in seven different wine regions in the state, including Red Mountain, and supplies some of the finest wineries in the country. Shaw and his wife, Wendy, were named Auction of Washington Wines’ Grower of the Year award in 2015 and were inducted into the Legends of Washington Wine Hall of Fame in 2018. “What (Shaw) loved the most while in Eastern Washington was riding in the truck with Marshall Edwards, vineyard operations manager and very good friend, checking out the vineyards and talking to winemakers. Dick survived to see the end of the 2023 grape harvest,” his obituary said.




Red Lion Hotel & Conference Center, 2525 N. 20th Ave., Pasco. Patrick Jones, executive director for Eastern Washington University’s Institute for Public Policy & Economic Analysis, will give a presentation on “Insights from Tri-Cities Trends.” Go to:

• Benton City Chamber of Commerce’s Building Bridges networking event: 5:30-7:30 p.m., La Zeiba Events, 509 Ninth St., Benton City. Email or call 509-588-4984 to RSVP.

NOV. 17-19

• ACL Northwest Conference Cornhole Tournament: noon to 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 17; 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 18; 8-11 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 19 at the HAPO Center, 6600 Burden Blvd., Pasco. Go to: for information on the divisions and schedule. Hosted by 3 City Slingers Cornhole.

NOV. 21

• Richland Chamber Luncheon: noon, La Bella Vita, 1515 George Washington Way. • Tri-Cities Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Networking Luncheon: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.,

NOV. 28

• Ask the Experts: Change your Health, Change your Mind, Change your Leadership: 3-4:30 p.m., Bechtel Board Room, 7130 W. Grandridge Blvd., Kennewick. Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce event. Cost: free. Go to: events.

NOV. 29

• State of Higher Education Luncheon: 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Red Lion Hotel & Conference Center, 2525 N. 20th Ave., Pasco. Cost: $30 for members, $40 for non-members. Tri-City Regional

Chamber of Commerce event. Go to: events.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy.

NOV. 30

DEC. 8

• Columbia Basin Badger Club Forum: “The Future of Local News”: noon to 1:30 p.m., virtual webinar. Cost: $5 for non-members, free for members. Seattle Times publisher Frank Blethen will be speaking. Go to:

DEC. 5

• Prosser Chamber of Commerce membership luncheon: noon to 1 p.m., location to be determined. Go to: • Hanford Dialogue: 5:30 p.m. open house, 6-8:30 p.m. meeting, Red Lion Hotel Ballroom, 1101 N. Columbia Center Blvd., Kennewick. Contact: hanforddialogue@ Organized by the Tri-Party Agreement agencies: Washington State Department of Ecology,

• Historic Downtown Kennewick Network Breakfast – Annual Meeting: 8-9 a.m., Clover Island Inn, 435 Clover Island Drive, Kennewick.

DEC. 11

• Non-Profit Showcase: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Red Lion Hotel & Conference Center, 2525 N. 20th Ave., Pasco. Cost: $15. Pasco Chamber of Commerce event. There will be an ugly sweater contest. RSVP at

DEC. 14

• Business After Hours: 4-6 p.m., Speedy Movers, 901 Aaron Drive, Richland. Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce event.



OPINION OUR VIEW Want to support local economy? We have a few suggestions By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

In the early days of the pandemic, social media feeds were flooded with messages and encouragement to support small business. Many people stepped up and supported entrepreneurs struggling to make ends meet when they were forced to close their doors. These same small businesses continue to need our community’s support, especially with food prices soaring along with other household expenses and the holiday shopping season upon us. There’s no better time to be reminded of the need to support local business than Small Business Saturday on Nov. 25, the day after Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year. Small businesses employ nearly half of all workers in the U.S., and in our state, nearly half of employees support their families with paychecks and benefits provided by the state’s 657,000 small businesses, according to the regional office of the U.S. Small Business Administration. When you shop local, you directly support the Tri-Cities’ economy. We recently have seen several small businesses supporting one another, and we urge consumers to follow their example. Richland’s Emerald of Siam held an October fundraiser to help its Uptown Shopping Center neighbor, Ray’s

Golden Lion, offset costly repairs that stymied its opening. Richland’s Tumbleweeds Mexican Flair owner Keith Moon constantly promotes other Tri-Cities businesses on social media, and they often return the favor. He also launched a campaign soliciting donations to sponsor pans of enchiladas that the restaurant could deliver for free to families in need. More than 100 trays of food had been funded by community partners by Nov. 8, the restaurant reported on social media. Kennewick’s Hot Mess Burgers & Fries recently challenged every restaurant and food truck in the Tri-Cities to support a Chefs’Giving fundraiser which also involves asking customers to donate a meal to feed those in need. These are terrific examples of entrepreneurs pumping goodwill and ripples of kindness into the world, and our world always can use more of this. And this brings us back to Small Business Saturday and our annual reminder to shop local. Participating is easy. Shop for gifts, goods and services from local stores (many have online options), eat at neighborhood restaurants, or treat the kids, friends or families to a fun activity. The Tri-Cities has so many great options in all these categories, and we know our business community would be grateful for your support.


Lawsuits over pay transparency law highlight flaws in how it was enacted In January, a new law took effect in Washington requiring employers with more than 15 employees to include wage and benefit information in new job postings. It’s intended to use pay transparency to address the gender wage gap, but employers raised concerns back when lawmakers were first debating the idea about possible unintended consequences. For example, employers warned they might lose the ability to offer alternative positions that a person applying for a job might be interested in accepting. And, they said, the law might open the door to a flood of lawsuits. Now, less than a year after the law took effect, we’re seeing there was good reason for concern. The Seattle Times reported Oct. 12 that a Seattlebased attorney filed 31 lawsuits since June against a range of employers accused of posting job ads without the legally required salary information. The attorney’s law firm had previously published a blog post under the title, “Did you know that Washington job seekers could get $5,000 thanks to recent updates to Washington’s pay transparency laws?,” the newspaper reported. The blog post reportedly directed workers who applied for a job after Jan. 1 that failed to include salary information to take a screenshot of the ad and contact the law firm. The burst of litigation lies in contrast to the approach of government regulators, who first try to educate employers about the new law before mov-

ing to stricter enforcement measures like issuing a fine and ordering an employer to pay damages. It’s also a perfect example Kris Johnson of why someAssociation of Washington thing called Business qui tam, or GUEST COLUMN more broadly, “private right of action,” is not a good idea. Basically, a private right of action gives an individual the right to bring a lawsuit against an entity that’s being regulated by a particular law or statute. So, instead of leaving the administrative review and enforcement of state regulations up to state agencies such as the Department of Labor & Industries, the private right of action means an individual can step outside of the government process and sue the employer, often bringing a class action case. It’s almost as if the state is outsourcing enforcement of its regulations to privatesector attorneys. The pay transparency law, adopted by lawmakers in 2022, included the private right of action, something that lawmakers in Olympia have increasingly attempted to attach to a range of proposed workplace-related measures


Bringing back salmon, steelhead runs is worthy investment In 1992, a single male sockeye salmon managed to swim 900 miles from the mouth of the Columbia River to Redfish Lake deep in Idaho’s Sawtooth Mountains, the end of his migratory journey. Biologists dubbed the sole survivor, “Lonesome Larry.” By 2010, the Northwest Power and Conservation Council happily reported record-setting runs for sockeye – 387,000 had climbed the fish ladders at Bonneville Dam. Last year, 751 sockeye were trapped at Redfish Lake Creek and taken to nearby Sawtooth Fish Hatchery. Sockeye runs to the basin, which is 6,300 feet above sea level, have fluctuated wildly ranging from a low of 17 in 2019, to 1,516 in 2022 since the sockeye was re-introduced to its natural habitat. The resurgence of the Redfish Lake Sockeye is not unique. Recently, KING-5 News, Seattle, reported the Baker River sockeye return has dramatically increased since the

dismal low of 99 in 1985. More than 52,000 sockeye came back in 2015, the previous record. This year, 31,000 were predicted; however, Don C. Brunell 65,000 sockeye Business analyst came back. Starting GUEST COLUMN upstream on the Baker River system is the Upper Baker Dam, a 312-foot-high concrete gravity dam completed in 1959 with 107 megawatts of power-generating capacity. Downstream is the 285-foothigh Lower Baker Dam, a concrete arch structure completed in 1925, which has a generating capacity of 111 megawatts. Combined, they supply enough electricity to serve 1.2 million households. The lower Baker River dam is within a stone’s throw of the Skagit River. Puget Sound Energy (PSE), an investor-

owned utility, built the two dams, which proved to be too high for fish ladders. KING-5 reported: “Under provisions of a 2008 federal license to continue to operate the hydroelectric project, PSE installed one of the most sophisticated fish passage systems in the country. It involves trapping fish, then hauling them around the dams in ‘fish taxis.’” The sockeye are then shot back into the water through pipes to access the blocked habitat. PSE also built a state-of-the-art hatchery to cultivate and breed fish in an enclosed environment – a multi-million-dollar, year-round investment by a utility. PSE’s dams are the first blockage the Baker River run encounters. On the other hand, Redfish Lake sockeye make their way up eight fish ladders on the Columbia and lower Snake rivers dams. Above the Salmon River confluence, the natural water system that Redfish Creek feeds is Hells Canyon where three Idaho Power dams block the middle Snake River. They have no

fish passages. Similarly, above the convergence of the Baker and Skagit rivers are three Seattle City Light dams on the Skagit which have no fish passage systems. Both Seattle City Light and Idaho Power are being pushed to install them. While fish ladders may not be feasible on the upper Snake and Skagit rivers, trapping, transporting and hatchery systems, such as PSE employs, are promising. The good news is the PSE’s work with tribal leaders, fisheries experts and citizens is paying off, but it is expensive and requires cooperation and commitment. “It’s a tremendous success story,” Ron Roberts, PSE vice president of energy supply, told KING-5. Roberts said they agreed to invest $170 million in fisheries because it aligned with the company’s values. The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) has spent more than $20 uBRUNELL, Page A8




GET tuition program enrollment period is open

Washington’s Guaranteed Education Tuition (GET) program’s 2023-24 enrollment period is open through May 31. The program provides families the chance to start saving for future education and career training costs and allows them to prepay future tuition costs by locking in today’s rates. The unit purchase price for the new enrollment period is $120.16. GET is a 529 prepaid tuition program, carrying a state-backed guarantee that units purchased now will always keep pace with in-state college tuition costs. Starting this year, savers can open a new GET account

with as little as $25. Savings in a GET account grow tax-free and aren’t subject to market ups and downs. GET funds can be used for expenses beyond tuition and fees, including housing and food. Students can use GET at nearly any public or private university, community college or technical school worldwide, as well as for apprenticeship programs and student loan repayments. The flexibility of all 529 plans, including GET, is set to expand in 2024. Beginning in January, unused 529 funds can be rolled into a Roth IRA retirement savings account for the student. GET, which opened in 1998, is one of two college savings options offered by Washington College Savings Plans (WA529). WA529’s other 529 plan, DreamAhead, is a nationally recognized

investment-based 529 plan launched in 2018 to help Washingtonians save toward the full cost of college. Washington residents who want to help a student save for future education costs can open a GET or DreamAhead account online at with no enrollment fee. For questions about GET, call 800-9552318 or email For questions about DreamAhead, call at 844-529-5845.

$3.5M in EV charging station grants available

Businesses, nonprofits and tribal and public organizations are eligible to apply for grants for electrical vehicle (EV) charging station infrastructure through the state Department of Ecology. The agency is offering a total of $3.5

million in grants over the next two years to buy and install Level 2 charging stations and upgrade existing charging stations in public, fleet, workplace and residential locations, a news release said. “The ‘Charge Where You Are’ grants are intended to attract applicants from a wide range of community groups over multiple funding rounds. The first installment will distribute $1 million, with priority given to projects in rural areas, as well as neighborhoods with limited access to EV charging and communities that are disproportionately affected by air pollution. Funding for the grants comes from Washington’s Volkswagen diesel emissions settlement, the release said. Applications for the first round are open through Nov. 16. Go to: BRUNELL, From page A7 billion since 1980 on Columbia River salmon recovery, making it one of the most expensive, but promising, endangered species restoration efforts in the country. Salmon run recovery is not predictable with precise accuracy. Many variables contribute to the size and quality of runs. When yearly Pacific Northwest salmon runs are plotted on a line graph, they resemble a giant roller coaster. However, the commitment to bringing back salmon and steelhead runs is a worthy investment. Remember, hydropower does not emit greenhouse gases. Don C. Brunell is a business analyst, writer and columnist. He retired as president of the Association of Washington Business, the state’s oldest and largest business organization, and now lives in Vancouver. He can be contacted at JOHNSON, From page A7 including workplace safety, wage and overtime provisions and privacy protection. In California, a general private right of action law passed in 2004 has not yielded positive results for either employers or workers, according to a 2021 report prepared for the CABIA Foundation. It found that the average payment to a worker from a case decided by a state agency was 4.5 times greater than one decided by a court. In other words, employees were better off not going to court. And yet, without attorney fees involved, overall costs were lower. For many Washington employers, including salary and benefit information in job postings is nothing new. They have voluntarily provided that information for years. For others, it’s a change in practice that might take some time to adjust to. Unfortunately, the way Washington lawmakers chose to enact the state’s pay transparency law opened the door to regulation by litigation – and that’s costly for both employers and employees. Kris Johnson is president of the Association of Washington Business, the state’s chamber of commerce and manufacturers association.



Tri-Cities lands Ironman triathlons for 2024-26 By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

A major endurance race is coming to the Tri-Cities – and it’s expected to bring in thousands of athletes, supporters and staff, plus millions of dollars in visitor spending. Ironman has announced the Tri-Cities as the site of its new Ironman 70.3 Washington Tri-Cities triathlon to be held on Sept. 22, 2024. The Tri-Cities also will host Sept. 21, 2025, and Sept. 20, 2026, races. Visit Tri-Cities will act as the facilitator in collaboration with the cities of Richland and West Richland and other regional communities and agencies, Visit Tri-Cities said in a statement. The international triathlons are expected to bring in 2,500 athletes each year, plus 7,500 visitors, crews and support

staff, leading to $6 million to $8 million in visitor spending. “Ironman is one of the most recognized global brands in endurance sports and Kevin Lewis we are thrilled they have selected the Tri-Cities to represent that brand. The benefits of hosting an Ironman 70.3 event are extremely positive and go far beyond the millions of dollars it will bring in through visitor spending,” said Kevin Lewis, chief executive officer of Visit TriCities, in the statement. Tim Brosious, northwest regional director for The Ironman Group, added that he

expects athletes to “fall in love with the rolling hills of wine country, as Tri-Cities will not only become a staple in their racing calendar, but also a favorite place to vacation year-round.” The Ironman triathlon isn’t the only sporting event Visit Tri-Cities has helped recruit to the area recently. The agency also secured the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association world championships in 2024 and 2027, with each event expected to have a $1 million economic impact. The local Ironman triathlon will kick off at Howard Amon Park with a 1.2-mile swim, followed by a 56-mile bike ride through wine country and ending with a 13.1-mile run along Riverfront Trail. Officials from Richland and West Richland praised the news. “This will be a remarkable event and

we’re thrilled to play such a key role in its success,” said Richland City Manager Jon Amundson in the statement. West Richland Mayor Brent Gerry added that the event “will bring people to enjoy our beautiful and great community, allowing us to share our wonderful recreation opportunities.” Recruiting the Ironman triathlon to the Tri-Cities was a priority of the newly formed Tri-Cities Strategic Alliance, which is a partnership among Visit TriCities, Tri-City Development Council, Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Benton-Franklin Council of Governments. Want to take part in the race? General registration is underway. Go to:

Longtime Tri-Cities advocate dies after retiring six years ago By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

A longtime Tri-Citian who devoted 52 years of his career to Tri-Cities issues died Oct. 27 in Idaho. He was 82. Gary Petersen was modest about his accomplishments when the Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business interviewed him when he retired from TRIDEC six years ago. “I honestly do not like a lot of ‘stuff’ on me. I’ve always considered myself as more of the ‘back-room’ supporter type

guy,” he told the Journal in 2017. When pressed to share career highlights, Petersen cited lobbying congressional offices to increase federal Gary Petersen budgets to support Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Han-

ford cleanup; establishing the Manhattan Project National Historical Park; suing the federal government to force it to consider Yucca Mountain for nuclear waste storage; transferring more than 1,600 acres of Hanford land to TRIDEC for development; and fighting for public access to Rattlesnake Mountain. Petersen spent 14 years at TRIDEC, succeeding the late Sam Volpentest, a community leader and a founder of TRIDEC.

“The Tri-Cities simply would not be what it is today had it not been for Gary’s leadership and dedication,” said Rep. Dan Newhouse. The congressman said Petersen’s advocacy for the Hanford cleanup mission “has been a cornerstone of the success we’ve seen in the region. His historical knowledge, wisdom and understanding of our region’s priorities was matched by uPETERSEN, Page A39



Owners put Richland sushi restaurant on market By Jamie Council

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

A popular Richland sushi restaurant is for sale. BK Hong and Yoori Nah are selling Ara Sushi & Grill. Their traditional Japanese and Korean restaurant is at 430 George Washington Way, Suite 430, on the top floor of the Riverwalk Shopping District building and was listed in September. The restaurant posts an annual net profit of $243,000 and is listed for $470,000. The couple plan to open other businesses and need to sell the restaurant to free up capital and concentrate on other ventures,

according to their MLS listing. This doesn’t tell the full story. Nah and Hong are both from Korea and met in 2019 on a blind date. Nah was, and still is, a dental hygienist, and Hong was a restaurant manager. Like many other couples, they had to cancel their wedding due to the pandemic. Though they intend to sell Ara Sushi, they plan to stay in the area. “I met my wife. Now I have two lovely kids and three dogs,” Hong said. “We love Tri-Cities so much. I think it is good and beautiful rural-feeling city to raise kids and have a great retirement life.” Hong works nights and weekends. While

they are living their dream, they said they need a change of pace. The couple plans on finally being able to have a wedding. Due to some health issues, Nah’s family is unable to travel by air so she said it would be nice for her parents to meet their grandchildren. “We haven’t had any family time,” Nah said. “We haven’t even been able to go on any family trips. Family time and then we’ll move on to the next project.” The couple opened their restaurant in February 2021, after relocating from the west side, where Hong was a restaurant manager for five years with hopes of opening an establishment to call his own. They had trouble finding an affordable place near Kirkland during the pandemic. Nah happened to stumble upon their current building’s listing and convinced her husband to check out the area. “He instantly saw the vision of the restaurant in this location,” Nah said. “The people in Tri-Cities are amazing. They are so relaxed and very polite, and we love the weather.” Their menu features everything from sushi rolls and sashimi to traditional dishes such as bibimbap, bulgogi and pork katsu. They also have a selection of sake, beer and wine. The 2,294-square-foot restaurant has a capacity of 49, including a patio area for additional seating and private events. They have 10 full-time employees and two parttime workers.

Prior to Ara Sushi, the building was home to The Landing Bistro and Lounge, Fox and Bear Public House and Katya’s Bistro & Wine Bar. With an expanding urban area between Comstock Street and Bradley Boulevard, including new apartments under construction, Nah and Hong expect to see an increase in foot traffic. “It’s a growing area,” Nah said. “The new owners will be very busy.” The sale includes Ara Sushi’s trademark, phone number and all operational assets such as equipment, tables, security cameras and audio equipment. It has a 4.8 Google review rating with more than 300 reviews. The restaurant’s annual gross income is $927,000, with $684,000 in operating expenses, according to their listing. The couple don’t own the building, so the potential buyer would take over the lease that ends in February 2031 with a monthly rent of $4,664. It is co-listed with Kristine Connolly of Coldwell Banker Tomlinson, and Alex Duff of eXp Commercial on the west side of the state. Connolly can be contacted at kristine@ or via phone at 509-440-0090. Duff can be reached at or 206-604-7440. Go to: Ara Sushi remains open and continues to operate as normal. Go to: arasushigrill.



No bluffing, new poker club owner is all in on new venture By Jeff Morrow

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

Christopher Johnson is going all in on opening a poker business in Kennewick. “It is a compelling game,” Johnson said. “Even a beginning player can do OK. It’s a fun game.” Called Desert Bluffs Poker Club, his new business will be at 5215 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite 110, in Marineland Plaza in Kennewick, next to The Village Bistro. Johnson, who has worked in digital marketing, is not sure of when the exact opening date is – it could be anywhere between now and January. But it’s happening, he said. “I underestimated the number of people who have to weigh in on this,” he said. But at this point, he said he’s all in. Johnson has been working with the local health department, state gaming commission, state liquor board and the city of Kennewick to get everything in order. “At the beginning of 2018 this idea came into my head,” he said. “I just couldn’t let it go.” The Covid-19 pandemic delayed plans, but Johnson, with his wife Heather’s blessing, has persevered. “It’s been a journey,” he said. “When I started the process of trying to get it opened, I didn’t know how to navigate the permitting process.” He admitted he should have hired an architect from the first day. “I had a designer, and he was fine. But I basically decided to do more ambitious plans,” Johnson said. “There is just an expanse of paperwork, and now I’m allin at this point. I have a soft spot in my heart for anybody who tries to go it alone in business ventures. My hope is that the community responds.”

Poker’s popularity More than 120 million people in the

world play poker, with 60 million people playing poker in the United States alone. It makes it one of the most popular card games in the world. Johnson said he knows of about 50 home and private games that run every month in the Tri-Cities. “Poker is a social game,” he said. “Look at the numbers. Recreational poker has been big for a long time. You use math and social skills. It takes a lot of skill to play poker. The game is pretty compelling. The World Series of Poker has shattered numbers with players.” He’s right. reported in July that there were a record 10,043 entries in this year’s main event. Johnson was a dealer this summer at the Las Vegas games, spending seven weeks there where tournament organizers put him and other dealers up at the Rio Hotel & Casino. He’s also dealt in tournaments at the Wildhorse Resort and Casino in Pendleton.

The plan for Desert Bluffs Johnson said that the state Gaming Commission gave him permission in mid-October to buy gaming equipment such as tables, chips and chairs. “I have enough room for seven tables,” he said. “But I’ll probably start by opening three to five of them. We’re building our own tables. They cost about $5,000.” The plan is for Desert Bluffs to be open four days a week. “We’ll be closed Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays,” he said. “On Thursday and Friday, we’ll open around lunch time. On Saturday and Sunday, it’ll be 10 a.m. Each night, we’ll close when the last game breaks.” Games set to be played are Texas Hold’em, Omaha, PLO and Big O. Johnson plans to host a number of tourna-

ments. The front entrance will have a doubleentry door, giving it a speakeasy vibe. The menu will be simple to start, as the club has two pizza ovens, four air fryers and a bar. Johnson is looking for partners for local beer; T-shirts and hats; and restaurants that might want to take over the kitchen. He’s looking to hire nine employees as dealers at opening, and some have already signed on. “We’re also looking Photo by Jeff Morrow at one to two servers. Christopher Johnson stands in front of the future home I have the front of the of Desert Bluffs Poker Club in Marineland Plaza in house,” he said. Kennewick. He plans for his workers to have a benhas been getting a lot of likes.” efits package. There is no turning back, he said. While he isn’t sure when exactly the “I signed a lease in July so at that point, place will be open, he’s been providing it was damn the torpedoes and cross the regular updates on his website. He said the delays and setbacks will be Rubicon,” Johnson said. Deal the Tri-Cities in. well worth the wait. search Desert Bluffs Poker Club: 5215 W. “There are plenty of players out there,” Clearwater Ave., Suite 110, Kennewick. he said. “Reaction has been unreal. I’ve got 100 people a month who have gotten Contact: 509-767-6537; Chris@deserton my waiting list. Our Facebook page;



GERBER, From page A1 chairlift operator. He became addicted to opioids after taking pain medication for an injury, although he didn’t initially recognize his addiction. “He came home for a month (to visit). Afterward he said, ‘I was happy to be home, but I was depressed and had a cold and kind of a small flu.’ That was withdrawal. He didn’t realize it,” Gerber said. “Later, when he was in treatment and he wrote journals, he talked about that – how it could sneak up on a person. Many people he knew who were addicted didn’t know they were addicted,” Gerber said. She hopes “Witness to Addiction” will help readers spot the signs. Too often, addiction is viewed as shameful – a stigma that makes it harder to seek help, Gerber said.

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“But we have a saying that it’s a disease not a disgrace. It’s a medical issue not a moral issue. It’s a sickness, not a sin,” she said. It’s also an epidemic. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reported in 2022 that 20.4 million people in the United States were diagnosed with substance use disorder during the past year. Of those, only 10.3% received treatment. More than 106,000 people in the U.S. died from a drug-involved overdose in 2021, the agency reported. Gerber helped start the Benton Franklin Recovery Coalition about five years ago, after Jim’s death. She was joined in the effort by other parents who lost children to addiction, plus people in recovery themselves and a treatment counselor. They found allies in the law enforcement, the medical and faith

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Book signings

Dec. 3: Richland Public Library, 955 Northgate Drive. Jan. 6: Noon, Barnes & Noble, Columbia Center mall, Kennewick. communities and others, and the group has become the largest recovery coalition in Washington. Gerber and her crew began lobbying for a recovery facility in the Tri-Cities – working with elected officials, making trips to Olympia and otherwise raising awareness about the need. While the Tri-Cities area has more than 300,000 residents and counting, it doesn’t have in-patient addiction treatment. It’s the only major metro area in the state without such a facility. However, that’s about to change.

Recovery center on the way Benton County has purchased land in Kennewick – including a former Welch’s Grape Juice warehouse and the old Kennewick General Hospital building – for a behavioral health recovery center. The center will serve the greater Tri-Cities area, helping people who are experiencing mental health crisis and those dealing with substance use disorder. It’s expected to open in 2025. The former Welch’s warehouse on East Bruneau Avenue will be transformed into a crisis relief center, crisis stabilization unit and secure withdrawal management unit. The latter two units will have 16 beds each, while the crisis relief center will have a different configuration. And the former Kennewick General Hospital building on South Auburn Street will be home to a 16-bed residential facility for people dealing with substance use disorder. Other services, such as transitional or recovery housing, could be offered in the future. A design-build team that includes Bouten Construction and NAC Architecture is in place. “We are in what’s called a validation phase. That’s where we sit down with the design team and figure out how many rooms we need and what types of rooms we need and what size they need to be. We’re starting to work on figuring out how to fit the different programs in the two spaces we have. That will lead to a full design of the project. They’ll start construction when the design is about 30 to 40% complete,” said Matt Rasmussen, deputy county administrator. The county is negotiating with Comprehensive Healthcare in Yakima to operate the center. Rasmussen said the need for a recovery center in the community is clear. “We’ve seen over time that there’s a big cost in not managing people who are having mental health or substance use issues... There was a surgeon general’s report probably six or seven years ago that figured if you spent $1 on behavioral health care you would ultimately save $7 in other community costs,” Rasmussen said. “Michele and her group – they are really passionate, they have a lot of lived experience and they really helped drive the point home of why this is important, and then the county helped step in because this is really better for the community.” The two properties cost about $5.4 mil-

Courtesy Michele Gerber Michele Gerber, who lost her son, Jim, to addiction, shares his story in her new book, “Witness to Addiction,” which is available now through Westbow Press.

lion total, paid for with a combination of state grant and local county dollars. County officials are still developing the final budget, but the last estimate put the construction cost at about $24 million, to be paid for with a mix of funding, including state and federal grants, Covid-19 response funds and money from the one-tenth of 1% sales tax increase for mental health services that took effect in Benton and Franklin counties last year. That sales tax also will pay for operations of the recovery center.

‘I hope he’s proud’ Rasmussen called Gerber, “an amazing person,” and said he’s been inspired by her story. Gerber hopes others will feel inspired in the same way when they read “Witness to Addiction.” The book is available now through Westbow Press, and she plans to offer book signing events locally. Gerber, who holds a doctorate in history and worked for two decades as the Hanford site historian, previously penned the popular tome, “On the Home Front: The Cold War Legacy of the Hanford Nuclear Site.” But “Witness to Addiction” is by far her most personal book. She’s excited about its debut, and she’s excited about the recovery center opening its doors. It’s bittersweet. She misses her son and his bear hugs. She misses his smile and his laugh. He had a big personality and people were drawn to him. He cared about others deeply. He was open and brave. When he realized he was addicted to opioids, he reached out for help. Gerber believes he’d be glad to know help is on the way for others in the Tri-Cities area and beyond, thanks to his mom. “I hope he’s proud of me,” Gerber said. “I have a strong Christian faith, so I believe he knows what’s going on, that he can see it. I know he would want to help people.” “Witness to Addiction” is available at, Amazon and at local bookstores. Go to:



Kennewick family’s legacy of kindness involves a special soup

The man behind Pep’s Hearty 11 ½ Bean Soup died a little more than 10 years ago. But Duane “Pep” Pepiot’s memory lives on, and so does the beloved soup he created with his wife, Inie – a savory treat that’s the hit of the Holly Daze bazaar at Kennewick First United Methodist Church. Pep and Inie’s granddaughter Katie Suitonu now spearheads assembly of the soup, which is sold as a dry mix for $8 a bag. She promised her papa that she’d take over the soup mantle when he could no longer wield a ladle and keeping that promise for the last decade has been a labor of love. “I do it because I enjoy the memories, the smell of the spices,” Suitonu said. “We know when it’s soup time. We look forward to it. It’s like spending time with (my grandparents). They’re there with us.” The bazaar is put on by the Kennewick church’s United Women in Faith group as a fundraiser. This year’s event was Oct. 21, but it’s not too late to get a package of the soup. The church sells any leftover bags of the mix at the office until they run out. The 11 ½ bean soup has been a staple of the bazaar for decades. Pep and Inie spent a year perfecting the recipe, and the soup became so popular that at one point they were assembling more than 1,000 bags annually. The church in 2012 held a celebration to honor the Pepiots for their contributions; it coincided with their 60th wedding anniversary. By then, Pep was dealing with some health challenges that prompted him to ensure the soup legacy would be passed on. That’s when Suitonu stepped up. “He said, ‘Katie, are sure you want to do this? This is a big job.’ I was like, ‘Of course I do,’” Suitonu recalled. “‘The first couple of years I thought, ‘Oh gosh, Papa, you were not kidding.’ But I know they would be so pleased. It keeps

their legacy going. It keeps their names in people’s mouths.” Pep died in June 2013 at age 82. Inie followed a few years later, Duane Pepiot in 2018. The couple – Pep was a physical therapist and Inie a nurse – spent decades giving back to the community, through Inie Pepiot their work, their church and in other ways. They separately were named Kennewick Man of the Year and Kennewick Woman of the Year, among numerous other honors. “Pep was delightful. He always had a smile on his face. You just loved Pep, and Inie, too. She was very funny. She supported everything that Pep did. They meant a lot to the church,” said Phyllis Koschik of Kennewick, a longtime friend and fellow First United Methodist Church member. Like so many others, Koschik loves the 11 ½ bean soup – and so does her


By Sara Schilling

Courtesy Katie Suitonu The Suitonu family assembles packages of Pep’s Hearty 11 ½ Bean Soup ahead of the annual Holly Daze Bazaar at Kennewick First United Methodist Church. Katie Suitonu, wearing an apron, is the granddaughter of Duane “Pep” and Inie Pepiot, who created the beloved soup mix.

family. “I’ll make a pot and I’ll tell my son and grandkids, ‘I’ve got bean soup, do you want to come over or...’ and before I can finish, they’ll say, ‘We’ll be over,’” Koschik said. Susan Sandmeier, one of the Holly Daze coordinators, also is a big fan.

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“I especially like it with extra ham,” she said, noting people add their own flourishes to the soup. One thing no one has been able to do is crack the secret recipe. While “you can maybe figure out the beans, they uPEP’S BEAN SOUP, Page A15




will not divulge the spices,” Sandmeier said with a chuckle. That’s part of the fun. Suitonu said she and her father, Bob Norman, are the only two who know the spice blend. Come soup assembly time, Norman’s job is to mix the spices. Suitonu’s husband, Roland, mixes the beans, and their kids and other family members help out as well. It’s a family affair – just as it’s always been. “In the past, we were doing 1,000 to 1,500 (bags of soup mix). We’d do that in a weekend with my grandma and grandpa – and watch football (while we

were doing it). It was a serious assembly line. Now it’s a little bit smaller,” Suitonu said, noting the crew churns out around 300 bags, give or take. While it’s a lot of work, it’s rewarding. Suitonu knows Pep and Inie would be proud. She’s proud right back – to be their granddaughter, to be carrying on their soup legacy, and to be sharing it with the next generation of her family. “(My grandparents) were the most wonderful humans I have ever known or ever will know. They could make anybody feel like the most important person in the world,” she said. “I see them, still, in my children. I see their kindness. I see their big hearts.”


IRS increases 401(k) and IRA limits for 2024

The Internal Revenue Service announced that individuals can contribute more to their 401(k) plans in 2024, increasing the limit to $23,000, up from $22,500 in 2023. The limit on annual contributions to an IRA increased to $7,000, up from $6,500.

Transit rolls out military appreciation buses

Ben Franklin Transit has rolled out four military appreciation buses to honor local veterans. The buses debuted Nov. 11 at the


West Richland Veterans Day Parade. Each bus pays tribute to a different branch of the U.S. armed forces. The interior includes information on resources for veterans and features photos of local veterans, some of whom work for Ben Franklin Transit. Columbia Basin Veterans Center’s logo also is displayed on each bus. The buses were built at the Gillig factory in Livermore, California. After they’re unveiled at the parade, they’ll be in service on regular transit routes, a transit news release said. “We’re extremely excited to be able to showcase our support of the military in our community. We thank all who have served and are currently serving,” said Rachelle Glazier, general manager.






L&I director weighs in on minimum wage, workers’ comp hikes By Robin Wojtanik

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

Washington is poised to raise the minimum wage again at the beginning of next year, keeping it at the highest state-level in the nation. Together with proposed increases to workers’ compensation rates, the topics can be hot button issues for small business owners who often place the blame at the foot of the state Department of Labor & Industries, the agency that calculates and oversees the rate increases. “When we go to $16.28 (minimum wage) in 2024, we don’t want that to catch any worker or business off guard,” said Joel Sacks, director of the state department of L&I. The 3.4% increase takes effect Jan. 1, 2024, and applies to workers ages 16 and older. The number isn’t arbitrary; it’s part of a state law passed by the voters that directs L&I to calculate the wage by comparing the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for urban wage earners and clerical workers from August of the last year to the current year to determine the minimum hourly rate workers will be paid. “That essentially ties minimum wage increases to inflation to keep up with the rising cost of living,” said Sacks, who reminds employers not to “shoot the messenger.” “The law is very specific about the equation used to calculate the minimum wage and the month it happens every year. L&I’s role in determining the minimum wage is to do the math and announce the results to employers and workers,” he said.

Workers’ comp It may be little consolation to employers who see that increase paired with proposed hikes to 2024 workers’ compensation rates as a one-two punch to their bottom line. Washington is unique in that about a quarter of insurance for injured workers is paid by the state’s pool of workers, with the remainder supplied by employers. Elsewhere, most rates come from a percentage of payroll, so when wages go up,

Joel Sacks

the state collects more premiums. But in Washington, employers pay based on hours worked, which results in the state covering the cost of higher wages with higher workers’ comp

rates. A proposed 4.9% increase for 2024 comes on the heels of a 4.8% increase last year, a move the Association of Washington Businesses was quick to criticize. “This may seem like a small increase when viewed alone, but it follows multiple years of rate hikes,” said Kris Johnson, AWB president, in a statement. “Over the last two years, workers’ comp rates have increased nearly 10% in Washington while other states continue to lower their rates. It comes on top of other pressures, including unemployment insurance, paid family and medical leave and the nation’s highest workers’ compensation benefits paid.” But the state’s L&I leader points out it didn’t increase rates during the pandemic, thanks to a contingency reserve built up during good economic years, just for times like that. Now, a multitude of factors go into these decisions. “We have core principles that impact workers’ comp rate proposals,” Sacks said. “First, we want to keep rate changes – whether going up or down – steady and predictable. Second, we want to maintain an adequate workers’ compensation contingency reserve. And third, we want to do everything we can to help workers heal and go back to work. It’s what is best for the worker and for the workers’ compensation system.”

A safety emphasis The agency said it also has avoided even larger rate increases by keeping an emphasis on safety. Sacks said proposed increases also are tied to both higher health

care costs and higher wages for workers, “which means the cost of replacing wages when a worker gets hurt is also going up. Since we didn’t raise rates during the pandemic, the cost numbers alone indicated we needed about a 10% average increase.” It’s little comfort to Johnson. “Washington is already an expensive state to do business in and unfortunately this proposed 4.9% average rate increase in workers’ compensation insurance will only make it more expensive for employers dealing with extraordinary inflationary pressures. This is an average rate increase, for some, the increase will be as high as 20% while others may get no increase,” he said in a statement.

Gig economy A recent change to workers’ compensation brought rideshare drivers under the plan to provide full coverage while on the job in a sector known as the “gig” economy, those one-off jobs that also cover service roles like DoorDash. “The Legislature has started to respond to these challenges by ensuring rights for workers driving for companies like Lyft and Uber – providing access to paid sick time, workers’ compensation, and minimum pay standards,” Sacks said. They also provided protection for drivers against retaliation and directed L&I to set up a Drivers Resource Center, so drivers have a pathway to appeal when removed from the platform unfairly. Sacks expects more changes to come, citing the support from both lawmakers and residents when it comes to worker safety, along with paid sick leave and overtime. These gig positions have grown and evolved over the last decade, along with the demand for online services and deliveries, resulting in more distribution centers throughout the nation for mega-retailers, like Amazon. This also has come with pressures and quotas for workers to fulfill hundreds of requests during a given shift. Sacks says state lawmakers have responded to the

growth of this industry with new laws to protect those facing quotas or performance standards, applying to workers at the AutoZone distribution center and Amazon’s two warehouses, both in Pasco. Opening dates for the warehouses have not yet been announced. “Among those protections was making sure workers with a quota have transparency, so they know what the quota is and when it changes,” Sacks said. “Quotas also can’t create a new danger of injury in the workplace. That means they can’t be structured so they get in the way of basic rights, like bathroom breaks, or don’t provide workers with the time they need to use necessary safety equipment. Finally, workers can’t be punished for not meeting a quota that violates these new standards.”

Looking ahead Sacks said the new legislative session will include rulemaking, “a process that involves input from stakeholders, workers, businesses and others to implement these new requirements and ensure a way to enforce the new rights.” Ergonomics are also an important piece for warehouse and assembly line workers, including those at meat and food processing plants in the region. Repeated motions, lifting, carrying or twisting may create a risk of injury not seen when these movements are done independently. The head of L&I said some of the most common causes of injuries and deaths on the job are often preventable, and it’s the agency’s mission to “keep Washington safe and working.” Sacks said state inspectors are often frustrated by the lack of use of basic safety equipment. “We know fall protection, like harnesses and anchor points, save workers’ lives. We know that using rollover protection and seatbelts on a tractor is an effective way to stop workers from being killed. The knowledge and technology are there, we just need to make sure employers are using it,” he said. uWORKERS’ COMP, Page A22



Largest Employers

LABOR & EMPLOYMENT Ranked by number of full-time equivalent employees*

FTE Employees in Benton-Franklin Counties1 10/1/23 10/1/22

FTE Employees Elsewhere 10/1/23 10/1/22

Parent Organization, Location

Top Executive(s) in Benton-Franklin Counties

Business Activity, Companies or Entities Operated2

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory P.O. Box 999, Richland, WA 99352 509-375-212,





U.S. Department of Energy, Washington, D.C.

Steven Ashby, director

Science research and development.

Kadlec 888 Swift Blvd., Richland, WA 99352 509-946-4611,





Providence, Renton

Lamb Weston 8701 W. Gage Blvd., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-735-4651,





Lamb Weston Inc., Eagle, Idaho

Kennewick School District 1000 W. Fourth Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-222-5000,





Washington River Protection Solutions 2435 Stevens Center Place, Richland, WA 99352 509-376-8103,




Pasco School District #1 1215 W. Lewis St., Pasco, WA 99301 509-543-6700,



State of Washington Various state agencies 360-725-5100,


Richland School District 6972 Keene Road, West Richland, WA 99353 509-967-6000,


Organization Name, Website Location, Phone

Reza Kaleel, chief executive, Providence Southeast Washington Service Area Mark Schuster, senior vice president, supply chain, North America

Health care. Leading supplier of frozen potato and sweet potato products to restaurants and retailers around the world.


Traci Pierce, superintendent

Pre-K-12 education.


Amentum, Chantilly, Virginia

Wes Bryan, president and project manager

Radiological and chemical tank waste management and treatment.



Pasco School District #1, Pasco

Michelle Whitney, superintendent

Public education.





N/A: numerous state agencies represented






Shelley Redinger, superintendent

K-12 public education.

Robert Wilkinson, president

Provides operations of the Hanford Mission Essential Services Contract. Provides site integration and sitewide services to the U.S. Department of Energy and One Hanford contractors. Nuclear cleanup and environmental remediation holdings at multiple DOE-EM sites across the nation. Designing, building and comissioning the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant at the Hanford site for the U.S. Department of Energy.

Hanford Mission Integration Solutions P.O. Box 943, MSIN H1-30, Richland, WA 99354





Leidos (majority); Centerra & Parsons; Reston, Virginia

Central Plateau Cleanup Company P.O. Box 1464, MSIN A7-05, Richland, WA 99352 509-372-8877,





Amentum, Chantilly, Virginia

John Eschenberg, vice president

Bechtel National Inc. 450 Hills St., Richland, WA 99354





Bechtel, Reston, Virginia

Brian Hartman, senior vice president





Energy Northwest, Richland

Bob Schuetz, CEO

Public utility – energy.






Lee Adams, owner/operator

Locally owned and operated McDonald’s restaurant franchise since 1973.






Jon Amundson, city manager

City government and utility provider.

Framatome Inc. 2101 Horn Rapids Road, Richland, WA 99354 509-375-8100,






Lance Stephens, Richland site manager

Delivers nuclear fuel assemblies and fuelrelated components to nuclear power plants throughout the U.S. and Far East.

City of Pasco 525 N. Third Ave., Pasco, WA 99301 509-544-3080,






Adam Lincoln, city manager

Municipal government.

Columbia Basin College 2600 N. 20th Ave., Pasco, WA 99301 509-547-0511,






Rebekah S. Woods, president


City of Kennewick 210 W. Sixth Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-585-4200,






Marie Mosley, city manager

Municipal government services.

U.S. Postal Service 3500 W. Court St., Pasco, WA 99301 509-543-2157,





United States Postal Service, Washington D.C.

Trent McNeal, Washington district manager

Mail and parcel delivery.

Yoke’s Foods Inc. 3426 S. University Road, Spokane Valley, WA 99206 (Various locations in the Tri-Cities) 509-921-2292,





Yoke’s Foods Inc., Spokane Valley

John A. Bole, CEO

Retail grocery.

Washington State University Tri-Cities 2710 Crimson Way, Richland, WA 99354 509-372-7000,





Washington State University, Pullman

Sandra Haynes, chancellor

Permobil Inc. 2701 W. Court St., Pasco, WA 99301 509-586-4299,





Permobil Inc., Lebanon, Tennessee

Sean Redford, operations director

Columbia Industries 900 S. Dayton St., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-582-4142,





Columbia Industries, Kennewick

Michael Novakovich, president & CEO

Senior Life Resources NW Inc. 1824 Fowler St., Richland, WA 99352 509-735-1911,






Brandy Hickey, executive director

Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties 3315 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite 100B Kennewick, WA 99336 509-543-9980,






Brian Ace, CEO

Energy Northwest P.O. Box 968, Richland, WA 99352 509-372-5000, Adams Tri-Cities Enterprises, McDonald’s Restaurants 6515 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite 214 Kennewick, WA 99336, 509-735-9311 City of Richland 625 Swift Blvd., Richland, WA 99354 509-942-7595,

Notes: *If number of employees in Benton/Franklin counties is the same, companies are ranked alphabetically. 1Some counts may be more recent. 2 May not include all business activity, and companies or entities operated. 3 Fall 2022 data. 4Fall 2021 data. 5These numbers combine full- and part-time employees. DND means did not disclose. FTE means full-time equivalent. N/A means not applicable.

Public research university with a focus on energy, environment, and agriculture. Offers 20 bachelor degrees and 33 graduate degrees. Manufactures manual wheelchairs, power wheelchairs, seating and positioning products and power assist smart drives. Supports and empowers individuals with disabilities and life barriers through employment services, specialized job training, career opportunities, centers for social enrichment. Provides services and care for seniors through its Home Care Services and Meals on Wheels programs. Offers a wide range of programs for youth at 29 local club sites with programs focused on academic success, healthy lifestyles, and good character and citizenship.

Sources: Representatives and websites of the above companies. Information current as of Nov. 7, 2023. List compiled by Rachel Visick. Copyright 2023 by Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.




Report: PNNL’s economic output exceeds $1.93 billion By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

As one of the biggest employers in the region, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland makes a positive impact on the state’s economy, but especially in Benton and Franklin counties. And it has the data to prove it. The lab directly and indirectly supported $1.93 billion in economic output and more than 7,500 jobs in the state during the 2022 fiscal year, according to PNNL’s annual Economic Impact Report on the State of Washington. The report covers Oct. 1, 2021, through Sept. 30, 2022.

Richlandbased PNNL is one of 17 U.S. Department of Energy national laboratories working to address complex problems facing Steven Ashby society, from national security to sustainable energy to changing climates. It has campuses in Seattle, Sequim, Portland and College Park, Maryland. “In fiscal year (FY) 2022, despite lingering pandemic-related challenges, our

staff was extremely productive, enabling PNNL to deliver on its commitments to our many sponsors. In fact, their exceptional ideas and winning proposals resulted in yet another record year of funding. Similarly, it was another record year for hiring, resulting in 627 new hires and 725 interns, for a total of more than 5,700 employees,” said Steven Ashby, director of PNNL, in the report. The lab has a total payroll of $635 million, of which $554 million went to staff living in Washington. Another $202 million in indirect and induced wages were created in Washington. PNNL made procurements of goods

and services worth $93 million from Washington-based firms. Construction and renovation projects at PNNL led to $20.4 million going to Washington-based sub-contractors and workers. Battelle, which operates PNNL, and its staff at the lab paid approximately $31.9 million in local and state taxes, which includes sales and use taxes, property taxes and other taxes. Health insurance expenditures for PNNL’s 4,795 Washington-based employees, 2,300 retirees, and their households in the state totaled an estimated uPNNL, Page A22




Occupation outlook doesn’t look too different from today’s lineup Share of Employment in Top-5 Employing Sectors 100%










22 20

21 20

20 20

19 20


18 20































assistants (12th), elementary school teachers (18th), nursing assistants (20th) and nurses (21st). Openings can be traced to three sources: economD. Patrick Jones ic growth, exits Eastern Washington from a given University occupation and retirements. GUEST COLUMN Of the three, growth is typically the smallest. Exits and retirements are much larger, generally reflecting the dynamism in U.S. labor markets. Exits are particularly high in jobs requiring little formal preparation, such as in retail and the hospitality trades. Retirements have become an increasingly powerful factor in all occupations as baby boomers decide that they have worked long enough. (Or their employers make that decision.) Economies don’t change too quickly, however, so the forecast through 2026 largely reflects the present. How do we know? Every year, the ESD surveys the current distribution of occupations. For 2023, the five largest occupations in the greater Tri-Cities, in order, are: home health aides, fast-food workers, retail salespeople, cashiers and nurses. In other words, a list that at the top is not

Share of Employment: Top-5 Sectors

Crystal balls are hard to come by in regional economics. One of the few is delivered by state labor economists, with their annual outlook for occupations for the next decade. The latest version was recently released by the Washington Employment Security Department (ESD) and contains much food for thought about the state and regional economies. This column focuses on an outlook a little more near-term than 2031, in particular a labor market forecast through 2026. Among the different measures, the one I find most interesting is “annual average openings.” The takeaway for the greater Tri Cities: Among the predicted top 50 occupations by openings, not an engineering discipline is to be found. For a community of scientists and engineers, this may be surprising. In fact, the first engineering specialty to appear in the openings list of over 800 different occupations is mechanical, at No. 95. Environmental engineers place 98th. Civil, electrical and nuclear engineers aren’t too far behind, at the 108th-110th ranks. At the top of the forecast openings list are fast-food workers, with agricultural labor not too far behind. Rounding out the forecasted top five openings by occupations: retail sales workers, home health aides and servers. In fact, among the top 25 forecasted openings by occupations for the two counties, only four require some postsecondary education (rank): teaching

Benton & Franklin Counties - Government

Benton & Franklin Counties - Health care and social assistance

Benton & Franklin Counties - Agriculture forestry fishing and hunting Benton & Franklin Counties - Retail Trade

Benton & Franklin Counties - Admin & Waste Services Washington State - Government

Washington State - Health care and social assistance

Washington State - Agriculture forestry fishing and hunting Washington State - Retail Trade

Washington State - Admin & Waste Services

Courtesy Benton Franklin-Trends

too different from the forecast through 2026. The distribution of openings by occupations isn’t the same as the distribution by sectors. For example, computer science jobs are now ubiquitous in many sectors. Yet, many occupations are specific to a sector. A sectoral look at the Tri-Cities economy is given in the accompanying chart, denominated by jobs. Over the past near two decades, the

share of the workforce taken up by health care has grown dramatically while agriculture’s share has shrunk. In other words, while economies change slowly, they do change. One can also see this by implied annual growth rates of openings by occupations projected by ESD. Among the 25 largest in 2026, the five projected occupations with highest growth rate of openings are: cooks, hairdressers, fast food workers, servers and home health aides. These all show annual growth rates in the 3% to 4% range. The projected five with the lowest rate of openings are: farmworkers, electricians, bookkeepers, retail workers and office workers. These show annual growth rates in the low 1% range, with farmworkers expected to decline. The overall average was 1.65%. You may be wondering: What about those occupations that require post-secondary training? Of the four in the top 25 by openings, all showed growth rates greater than the overall average, with nursing assistants the fastest-growing. In the second tranche of 25 top-ranked openings, an additional four occupations appear: software developers, “other” post-secondary instructors, “other” counselors and accountants. All show projected openings growing faster than the overall average, except accountants. In fact, the projected growth rate of openings for software developers in the greater Tri-Cities is the highest among all the top 50, at 4.6% per year. There is a further wrinkle to imagining the workforce of the future. Simply because an occupation doesn’t land high in the rankings of openings doesn’t mean that there is little worry over the adequacy of local education efforts to provide those occupations. Very often supply doesn’t cover demand. Consider the occupations which typically require a four-year degree in annual openings at the 51st-100th places in the two counties over the next few years. uJONES, Page A22




LAURA FLORES Owner/CEO Ignite Consulting Number of employees you oversee: None, solopreneur Brief background of your business: I started my business in January 2023, so it is fairly new. I have always worked in the corporate world so being an entrepreneur has been an adjustment to say the least. And I love it. Ignite Consulting focuses on empowering businesses and organizations as well as individuals to reach their goals through training, coaching, skill building and guided practice. As an HR consultant, I help small businesses with the complex tasks and processes in the area of human resources. This includes hiring, onboarding, offboarding, investigations, as well as process and document creation such as job descriptions, policies and procedures, and hiring checklists. As a trainer, I provide comprehensive leadership programs as well as single trainings varying from leadership, communication, emotional intelligence to workplace harassment and company culture. One of my favorite parts of the job is the speaking engagements to spread the word on having the courage to have difficult conversations and building the confidence in yourself to be the leader you want to be.

How has the HR sector evolved since you first started working in it? It is so different now. Early in my career, the HR workplace experience seemed to have the HR department’s role as the “bad guy” who was a necessary evil. Even today, when I tell people I work in the HR field I get that “Oh, sorry about that” look. Today, HR has evolved into a business partner with a large role in the strategic planning and implementation of company culture for an organization. Of course, there are the required responsibilities of risk and liability, employment law and all the legal compliance a company must follow. But in addition to those critical responsibilities, there is a more businessand people-centered approach to human resources. Priorities have shifted to focus on people in terms of engagement, staff development, strategic planning and company culture.

Unfortunately, all small businesses still must follow legal and compliance responsibilities. The best advice I can give a small business is to reach out. There are HR consulting firms like mine that focus on being a resource for small businesses, if and when they need it. This includes referrals to trainings, webinars and other business development avenues. As small businesses, we don’t know what we don’t know. Awareness goes a long way. When small businesses can budget an HR professional, whether that’s hiring someone internally or contracting with a consultant, they can focus on what really matters to them, which is their business.

Can you share your best HR advice for small businesses? Small businesses are one of my favorites to help because they truly have a passion for the product or service they provide. Human resources is not their passion. Their business is their passion.

You recently spoke at the Tri-City Regional Chamber’s Women in Business conference, as well as the chamber’s Ask the Expert panel on “HR Pitfalls to Avoid.” Can you share these key pitfalls? The Ask the Experts panel series is

Laura Flores

such a great resource for small businesses and organizations. The panel focused on a few areas in which many businesses struggle, including recruitment, onboarding, policies vs. handbooks, National Labor Relations Board language and company culture. The biggest takeaway for me was ensuring that a business’ company culture is clear and consistent. It is difficult to recruit top candidates and keep new hires from leaving if the company culture is not what they expect. In addition, having clear policies in place to help supervisors and employees navigate through the workplace is equally important. uFLORES, Page A23



LABOR & EMPLOYMENT WORKERS’ COMP, From page A17 L&I offers a no-cost consultation program to assess workplace conditions and make recommendations for improvements. “We can help employers build a safety program, training, identify hazards and follow applicable safety rules without the threat of a fine or penalty for anything uncovered during the consult,” Sacks said. “It could mean the difference in whether a worker gets to go home to their family at the end of the day.” Request a consultation online at LIRequestConsult. JONES, From page A20 Ranked by annual openings, these are: general secondary school teachers (92), “other” psychologists (72), human resource specialists (58), middle school teachers (58), market research analysts (45), mechanical engineers (45), environmental engineers (43) and kindergarten teachers (43). When similar lists of openings are assembled for the other Eastern Washington metro areas, then combined and compared to the “degree production” at Eastern Washington institutions of higher education, my research shows a yawning gap exists between most occupations and degrees granted. Of course, talent can be imported, as it often has been. But is that the primary way this community wants to address its future workforce demands? D. Patrick Jones is the executive director for Eastern Washington University’s Institute for Public Policy & Economic Analysis. Benton-Franklin Trends, the institute’s project, uses local, state and federal data to measure the local economic, educational and civic life of Benton and Franklin counties. PNNL, From page A19 $98.8 million. Pensions and Social Security payments to all Battelle retirees who worked at PNNL totaled $179 million, of which about $131.2 million was estimated to be spent in Washington on goods and services. About 2,445 visitors to PNNL spent approximately 13,110 days at the lab and in its host communities and contributed an estimated $2.33 million to the state economy, mostly in Benton and Franklin counties. Eleven companies with PNNL roots and established in the last 10 years generated $11.1 million in Washington and employed 53 people. Licensing revenues totaled $3.29 million. A significant portion of these funds are reinvested at the Lab. PNNL hosted 1,587 students in intern and research associate positions in FY22, the highest number ever. Most of these interns spent weeks or months on PNNL’s Richland or other Washington campuses. Battelle contributed $682,000 to philanthropic and civic organizations (education, health and human services, arts and culture) in Washington. To read the full report, go to: PNNL_FY2022.

LABOR & EMPLOYMENT FLORES, From page A21 It was an honor to be on the panel with Reanette Fillmer Etzler of CLT Coaching. She is an expert in her field with years of experience. What do you see as the key challenges in the Tri-Cities job market? In the Tri-Cities job market, as in the nationwide market, we have businesses and organizations that have several vacancies and a lack of strong candidates. Businesses continue to be short staffed and people continue to be unemployed. It’s funny, you would think that companies needing employees and people needing jobs would be a solution in itself. Instead, people have begun to take note of things that were taken for granted prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. There are ways to work now that are less conventional and more flexible. Potential employees are seeking such opportunities, and some companies are not ready for this new way of working. So, there is the issue. One thing I have seen help businesses and organizations with this issue is to really sit down and contemplate how adjustments can be made in how they run their business. The No. 1 asset of a company is its people. When businesses listen to their people, it becomes easier to understand what motivates them and what they can do about their company culture to provide an environment where employees want to stay and thrive. What is the biggest challenge facing business leaders today? Company culture. In my recent experience with clients, I have worked with a few companies who are thriving and it is apparent that they have created an amazing company culture. When chatting with employees from all areas of the business, the message is the same. They talk about how their leadership listens and quickly takes action when employees have concerns or requests. They mention that their leadership is accessible and relatable. They also state that they have opportunities to grow and develop. But the biggest thing I notice is that most employees not only know their mission, values and standards of conduct, but feel confident that the issues will be addressed when those things aren’t being met. There are a few companies that are moving toward improving their company culture. When I chat with employees from


these companies, the opposite is true. They sometimes struggle with understanding what the organization stands for and how that looks in terms of behavior, performance and communication. With a little adjustment, business leaders can create an engaging environment where employees can thrive and produce the best results for their employers. If you had a magic wand, what would you change about your industry? I would wave my wand to get rid of the stigma that HR is the “bad guy.” Yes, HR handles investigations, discipline, layoffs and termination of employment. These tasks are necessary but that is only part of the gig. In the past decade, many HR departments and HR leaders have become a resource and support for employees. They go above and beyond to assist with growth and development opportunities, help employees with urgent personal matters, such as medical leaves and accommodations, and provide positive guidance and constructive feedback to ensure employees are successful. My magic wand would ensure that people understood that HR is there to help and support employees. What advice would you give someone going into a leadership position for the first time? Invest in yourself. The best investment you can make in any leadership role is to invest in becoming the best leader you can be. A few suggestions I would make to invest in yourself are: • Find a mentor. Someone who is in a place you want to be someday. Most people are happy to share their experiences as part of your learning and growth. • Learn. There is so much information at your fingertips in different forms, such as books, webinars, podcasts, conferences, masterminds, trainings, etc. Take the things you learn and make them make sense to you in your role. • Network. People are more helpful than you may think. You can gain immense insight from having a cup of coffee with someone new. • Then, do it. With most of my experiences, learning and growing doesn’t happen by only reading, watching webinars or attending conferences. It happens by taking action. Knowledge isn’t power. Applied knowledge is power.

How did you decide to pursue the career that you are working in today? I always knew I wanted to do something in business in the role of helping other people. Consulting is a perfect fit for me. It involves discovering what a business or individual needs and finding the best way to get them to their goal. It excites me every time I go through this process with individuals and businesses because I know there is a way I can help them achieve their goals. What do you consider your leadership style to be? I like to collaborate and come together to get a plan where we are on the same page and we know our vision and mission. Once we do, each person has a role and I trust that everyone is doing their part in making that happen. We check in regularly to make sure things are getting done and I provide guidance and encouragement to ensure they have what they need to be successful. I also like to be open to listening to others’ ideas on how to execute the plan. Most times I find people are creative, innovative and full of great ideas. How do you balance work and family life? I know people like to say “leave work at work and leave home at home,” but I struggle with that approach. As an entrepreneur, I am constantly in work-mode and mom-mode at the same time. In my experience, I have found there are a few approaches to work-life balance. When you are an employee who clocks in and out, the approach tends to be to leave work at work. There’s nothing else you can do once you leave work so be present in your personal life. A leader’s approach may be that they occasionally work from home after hours and take time off during work time for family business. As an entrepreneur, my worlds blend throughout the day. The great part of being an entrepreneur is I can create my schedule


to adjust as needed. Sometimes I take the afternoon to watch my kids’ sports games then follow up with clients in the evening when family time has settled down. And vice versa with work. There is no wrong way to find balance. Everyone has to do what works for them. Just make sure you lead your schedule based on your priorities and what is important to you. What’s your best time management strategy? Just start. Especially when working on tasks that are not your favorite tasks. There are certain things I don’t like to do so I look for other non-essential tasks to avoid them. I know, I know. When I notice myself doing that, I tell myself, just start. The best time management strategy that has worked for me is to pick my top three priorities for the day. Then, I start with the most important one and begin, even if it seems hard or overwhelming. I like to schedule blocks of time on my calendar as uninterrupted time to focus on only that task. I call them “jam sessions.” I make lots of progress when I focus for periods of time on complex tasks. What’s your favorite podcast? Every weekday, the first thing I do in the morning while I’m brushing my teeth is listen to “Darren Daily.” There is always a message I need to start my day and prime my mind with putting my best foot forward. My favorite app is called Journal, where in the morning I note three things I’m grateful for, what I will do to make the day great and a daily affirmation. Then, at the end of the day, I note the top three highlights of my day and one thing I learned. It’s quick but the perfect start and end to my day. Editor’s note: This Q&A has been edited for length. Read the full version at






TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 50 GUNNERS is a networking group of local, trusted industry leaders who provide outstanding services and quality products.






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Paintmaster Services, Inc.

Perfection Glass

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Commercial, residential and industrial painting.

Gesa Credit Union

Personal injury and business law.

Commercial Lender / Business Banker.

Financial planning, retirement accounts,college savings plans and life insurance.



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Cornerstone First Mortgage (509) 316-4905

Michael Thorn Cliff Thorn Construction

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Jason Simonis Columbia Basin Plumbing

Angela Dryden Action 2 Awareness Marcia Spry Aloha Garage Door Company Dennis Miller Artmil Omar Garcia Chem-Dry of Tri-Cities Angelita Chavez CHUGH, LLP

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General contractor specializing in roofs, decks, and remodels.

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Replacement windows, doors, skylights and glass installation.


Sperline Raekes Law (509) 783-6633 (509) 586-1177

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Diverse and comprehensive line of loan products to fit everyone’s needs.

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Pit Bull Pen expanded to help more dogs but it’s already out of room By Jamie Council

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

The pandemic changed the landscape for plenty of nonprofits and pet adoption groups were no exception. Adoption rates hit an all-time high. More than 23 million households, or 20%, adopted a pet, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. But as people’s lives returned to normal, sometimes their life didn’t include their new furry friends and they dumped their dogs. The Pit Bull Pen in Benton City received plenty of these abandoned pets. “During Covid, people adopted almost every dog they could. We were down to just our four pit bulls with bite histories,” said Trish Trickit, executive director The Pit Bull Pen in Benton City. “As soon as things opened up again, they started dumping their dogs, and in the meantime, (the dogs) were breeding. They were not socialized, spayed or neutered, vaccinated and it snowballed into this massive problem. It’s fortunate that we can take up to 20 dogs, but we are maxed out.” The Pit Bull Pen is a 501(c)(3) located on a 2.5-acre facility at 22206 E. Kennedy Road. It has been a nonprofit since 2014 and at its current location for 12 years.

At capacity In July 2022, the group received a kennel building permit to expand its operations. It now can accommodate up to 20 adult dogs, up from just four before. “With the dumping of Covid dogs, we maxed out right away and are still at capacity plus puppies,” Trickit said. While the nonprofit’s name indicates the main mission behind The Pit Bull Pen, the rescue serves all dogs and has expanded its operations to home and rehome as many as possible. After only serving pit bulls for the first couple of years, people started calling about other breeds and they were not turned away. “We said we will help any dog that we can and it rolled from there,” Trickit said. “We know pit bulls and I laugh because we have to figure out the little white fluffies. We’re down to help any way we can. We don’t want to rehome everyone’s dog. We will help wherever we can, but that’s not our mission.” Its mission is to rehabilitate and rehome pit bulls through the shelter, and search and rescue efforts. The group filled a gap in the rescue world at the time of its inception and still does to this day, Trickit said. The Pit Bull Pen is the only rescue that will consider taking a pit bull with a bite history, she said. Trickit’s crusade began after adopting her own pit bull without knowing about the difficulty the breed faces in the rescue world. “We want to advocate for them, get

Photos by Jamie Council The Pit Bull Pen in Benton City expanded a little over a year ago but has already reached capacity. The rescue world is facing an all-time high intake need with adoptions and donations down, and the number of strays and abandoned dogs going up, said Trish Trickit, executive director of the Benton City nonprofit.

them rehabilitated, and find them that perfect forever home,” she said. “It started when I went and got myself a blue nose pit bull and I had no association with the breed. I fell in love with Blue. He had been at the shelter for two years, and they were trying to get a lot of their pit bulls adopted that were there for a year or longer. That kicked up some awareness for me.” The Pit Bull Pen helps by rehoming, training, educating and rehabilitating, but needs help from the community to continue to operate at capacity and help as many animals as possible, despite some problems created by prior ownership. “The dog always pays the price,” Trickit said. “Always.” The Pit Bull Pen might be a great place to start for those looking to adopt a “soulmutt” companion, from pit bulls to many other breeds, or even puppies. Trickit said the shelter needs volunteers, foster homes and donations. Volunteers can help maintain the property and socialize the dogs. This can

come in the form of spending time with the dogs on the complex and taking them for a hike or public outing. Volunteers are especially important during the winter months when volunteer numbers decline. Foster homes can take in rescues on a short- or long-term basis to help rehabilitate and train the animals so they will be ready for a forever home. “We need fosters desperately,” Trickit said. “We prefer to not just keep 20 dogs here. Short term, long term ... people who can work with the dogs, those people are hard to find.” The Pit Bull Pen gladly will accept donations of dog food, puppy pads and puppy food. Trickit said the dogs go through 40 pounds of puppy food every other day with nine growing puppies currently at the facility. The Pit Bull Pen has an Amazon wish list, and it encourages people who want to help to sign up for its monthly donor program. Go to:

The Pit Bull Pen gladly will accept donations: dog food, puppy pads and puppy food. The dogs go through 40 pounds of puppy food every other day, with nine growing puppies currently at the facility.




Maximize charitable legacies with tax-efficient estate planning It is no secret that Americans are a very generous people. In 2022, Americans donated $319.04 billion to charities with an additional $45.6 billion given by those who listed charities in their wills or as beneficiaries on their retirement accounts. Let’s focus on the latter group, those who give after their death. Charitable giving can be an important part of building your legacy. However, if you intend to leave behind assets for both family members and a charity, there are some assets that are more beneficial to gift to family members compared to a charity, at least from a tax perspective. Let’s look at an

example. Barbara is a widow and nearing the end of her life and wants to review her estate plan. She has a net Nicholas Haberling worth of $1.2 million comCommunity First Bank & HFG Trust prised of the following assets: GUEST COLUMN • IRA worth: $200,000 • Home worth: $500,000 • Brokerage account worth: $500,000

For Barbara’s IRA, she has listed her son as the beneficiary, meaning he will receive the entire $200,000. However, her will, which controls her home and brokerage account, has 90% of her non-retirement fund assets going to her son, with the remaining 10% being donated to the St. Francis Animal Shelter. From the will, we have $900,000 going to Barbara’s son and $100,000 going toward the animal shelter. In total, $1.1 million will be going to Barbara’s son with $100,000 allocated toward St. Francis Animal Shelter. While the dollar amounts in this example might be unique, reflecting Barbara’s generous and saintly care for all God’s creatures, the listing of charities in someone’s will is a common occurrence. Despite good intentions, this is an inefficient plan from a tax standpoint. If we add a little more detail to the scenario, we can say Barbara’s house has a cost basis of $300,000 and the brokerage account has a cost basic of $100,000. This means that during her lifetime, Barbara has unrealized capital gains of $400,000. All the unrealized gains are from her brokerage account since her home is under the $250,000 exclusion amount for personal residences. Once Barbara passes away, her home and brokerage account will receive what is called a step up in cost basis. This raises the cost basis of those assets to their market value on the date of Barbara’s death. To keep things simple, we’ll say nothing exciting happened in the economy, and all Barbara’s assets have the same value on the date of her death. This means when Barbara’s son sells Barbara’s home, he will likely pay little to no capital gains taxes on that $500,000. He also will pay little to no

capital gains taxes on the sale of the inherited stocks or mutual fund holdings. St. Francis Animal Shelter also won’t have to pay any capital gains taxes, but that is because it is a charity. Instead, it just has to wait until the end of the probate process before it can receive the $100,000 allocated to the animal shelter. The IRA is a different story though. Barbara’s son receives $200,000 from the IRA, but since the IRA is taxdeferred, the government still wants to collect taxes on future distributions. Her son will then need to navigate the 10-year rule for beneficiary IRA distributions with those distributions being taxed to him as ordinary income. More money, even when it is taxed, is generally better than no money, but there is still a more tax-efficient way to distribute funds between Barbara’s beneficiaries. We’ll keep the dollar amount of all the assets the same, but instead of naming St. Francis Animal Shelter as a 10% beneficiary in her will, Barbara has her son inherit all the assets governed by her will, which totals $1 million. Then she names the animal shelter as a 50% beneficiary of her IRA with her son receiving the other 50%, meaning they each receive $100,000. In this scenario, Barbara’s son is still allocated $1.1 million in total with the animal shelter receiving $100,000, but we have reduced her son’s future tax liability. Barbara’s son receives the entire benefit of the step up in cost basis for Barbara’s home and brokerage account while reducing his tax liability by inheriting a smaller percentage of the IRA, though the total dollar amount of his inheritance of Barbara’s assets uHABERLING, Page A36




Wanted: Skating space for Tri-Cities roller derby team By Scott Butner

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

The Atomic City Roller Derby team is seeking a new home after the pandemic upended its longtime practice and game venues. Founded in 2007, the team began as part of a nationwide resurgence of the sport of roller derby, brought about by the formation of the Women’s Flat Track Derby Association. Unlike the roller derby of the 1960s and 70s, modern roller derby is less about theatrics and more about providing a hardhitting, fast-paced competitive sport – with some of the fun left in. By competing on flat tracks, often set up with nothing more than gaffer’s tape on concrete warehouse or gymnasium floors, the sport is accessible to many more communities than in the days of expensive bankedtrack arenas. By 2019, the team had grown to have a women’s team, a co-ed team, and a junior team, all skating under the banner of Atomic City Roller Derby, and competing against teams throughout the Pacific Northwest including British Columbia. During the summer, they practiced at the outdoor hockey rink adjacent to Mid-Columbia Libraries’ Kennewick branch, sometimes sweating it out in 100-degree heat. In the winter, they moved indoors to the Kennewick Activity Center, adjacent to the Kennewick City Hall. For home competitions against visit-

Photos by Scott Butner Photography Brandi Wehde (“Whack Job”) passes opposing skaters from the Willamette Kidney Thieves in a home bout in October 2019.

Stacie Robinson (“Willow”) from Atomic City Roller Derby passes blockers from Rodeo City Rollergirls during a Halloween-themed bout held in the Ellensburg High School gymnasium in October 2023.

ing teams from all over the Pacific Northwest, they rented the Southridge Sports and Events Complex. But then the Covid-19 pandemic largely shut down the sport in the Pacific Northwest. As a full-contact sport, the reasons seem obvious. But starting in 2022, the sport began to re-awaken. However, the temporary absence disrupted long-standing space arrangements and the team found itself struggling to find places to practice for the growing number of participants, and no longer had access to the Southridge complex for bouts and tournaments.

tween 5:30-8 p.m. Floor surfaces need to be compatible with roller skates – concrete, wood, vinyl or sports court. For competitive bouts, the team needs seating/standing space for up to 200 spectators. The team provides the actual seating. Registered as a 501(c)(3), the team has a budget for renting the space, though would prefer to discuss opportunities for in-kind sponsorship in lieu of some portion of the rent. Atomic City carries its own liability insurance. Contact Parker at 509-308-9474 to discuss potential spaces.

And so, the search was on. Tomiann “WeEvil” Parker, who serves as league president, said the team’s first priority is to secure space to use for indoor practice in the winter months. “I mean, it would be great if we had use of it year-around,” Parker said, “but we’re pretty tough, so we can skate outside in the summer. It’s pretty hard to do that in the winter, though.” The team’s space requirements are fairly simple: For practices, the team seeks an unobstructed floor space – 108-by-75 feet would be ideal, but the team could work with something down to 92-by-49 feet. They need the space two nights a week be-


At Tri-Cities Chaplaincy, we are honored to serve our community with compassion, empathy and dignity. Compassionate Approach: Our experienced team of chaplains and caregivers understands the emotional and spiritual aspects of endof-life care. We provide a supportive environment for patients and families to find comfort and solace.

Family-Centered: We recognize the importance of involving families in the care process. Our team collaborates with families to create personalized care plans that respect individual wishes and cultural beliefs.

Bereavement Services: Our care doesn’t end with the passing of a loved one. We offer bereavement counseling and resources to help families navigate their grief journey.

Learn more at or call (509) 783-7416.

1480 Fowler St. Richland (509) 783-7416




Largest Social-Service Nonprofits Organization Name Address Phone, Website

2022-23 Budget


Ranked by 2022-23 budget*

No. of Board Members/ Employees3/ Volunteers

Year Est. Here

Top Local Executive

Highest-Percentage4 Funding Sources

Description of Services5

Second Harvest Inland Northwest 5825 Burlington Loop, Pasco, WA 99301 509-545-0787,

$136.7 million6,7

14/ 77/ 8,0006


Carrie Perry, senior vice president of operations

Food donation (90.5%), individuals (3%), U.S. government (2.5%), corporations (2.4%), state (0.7%), foundations (0.6%), special events (0.3%).6

Regional hunger relief organization supplying food to over 250 neighborhood food pantries and meal programs. Programs include Bite2Go and the Mobile Market.6

The Salvation Army Tri-Cities 310 N. Fourth Ave., Pasco, WA 99301 509-547-2138,

$123.8 million8

7/ 5/ 89


Cristian Sibaja, major


Provides food bank, rental assistance, emergency meals to displaced individuals, school supplies, jackets during cold months, family Thanksgiving meals to prepare at home, help to break the chain of poverty. Provides services and care for seniors through its Home Care Services and Meals on Wheels programs.

Senior Life Resources NW Inc. 1824 Fowler St., Richland, WA 99352 509-735-1911,

$37 million

12/ 168/ 500


Brandy Hickey, executive director

Fee for service (96%), state (1.3%), individuals (1.12%), U.S. government (0.36%), corporations (0.33%), special events (0.27%), in-kind services (0.08%), other (0.04%), foundations (0.01%), United Way (0.01%).

Tri-Cities Chaplaincy 1480 Fowler St., Richland, WA 99352 509-783-7416,

$16 million

12/ 105/ 114


Laurie Jackson, CEO

Fee for service (93%), individuals (4%), special events (3%).

Columbia Industries 900 S. Dayton St., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-582-4142,

$12.6 million7

11/ 206/ 5


Michael Novakovich, president & CEO

Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties 3315 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite 100B Kennewick, WA 99336 509-543-9980,

$10.3 million10

23/ 185/ 300


Brian Ace, CEO

SIGN Fracture Care 451 Hills St., Suite B, Richland, WA 99354 509-371-1107,

$8.5 million

12/ 40/ 5711


Jeanne Dillner, chief executive officer

$8.08 million7,12

10/ 3/ 20


Jim Wilgus, regional leader & executive director


Working to end Alzheimer’s and all other dementia by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support.

$7.7 million13

7/ 108/ 3


Magen Russell, executive director

U.S. government (93.73%), state (3.25%), in-kind services (3.02%).

Serving 350 age- and income-eligible children and families through home- and classroom-based programs.

Kadlec Foundation 888 Swift Blvd., Richland, WA 99352 509-942-2661,

$6.6 million13

20/ 7/ 15


Jim Hall, chief philanthropy officer

Heartlinks Hospice and Palliative Care 204 W. Second Ave., Grandview, WA 98930 509-837-1676,

$5 million

10/ 60/ 14


Shelby Moore, executive director

YMCA of the Greater Tri-Cities 1234 Columbia Park Trail, Richland, WA 99352 509-374-1908,

$3.97 million7

10/ 85/ 380


Steve Howland, executive director


Communities in Schools of Benton-Franklin P.O. Box 1310, Richland, WA 99352 509-212-5601,

$3.8 million7

10/ 42/ 20


Lupe MaresRojas, executive director

U.S. government (64%), in-kind services (19%), foundations (14%), corporations (1%), individuals (1%), program supplies (1%).

World Relief Tri-Cities 2600 N. Columbia Center Blvd., Suite 206 Richland, WA 99352 509-734-5477,

$3.7 million14

0/ 33/ 28


Ken Primus, director

U.S. government (60%), state (30%), local churches (5%), in-kind services (3%), individuals (2%).

Tri-City Union Gospel Mission P.O. Box 1443, Pasco, WA 99301 509-547-2112,

$2.4 million

7/ 35/ 300


Andrew Porter, executive director

Individuals (92%), corporations (5.5%), churches (2%), United Way (0.5%).

Homeless services: shelter, food, showers, clothing, addiction recovery, case management.

Support, Advocacy & Resource Center 1458 Fowler St., Richland, WA 99352 509-374-5391,

$2.17 million7

10/ 16/ 32


JoDee Garretson, executive director

Mirror Ministries P.O. Box 400, Richland, WA 99352 509-783-5730,

$1.38 million

7/ 12/ 160


Tricia MacFarlan, executive director

Provides crisis and counseling programs for survivors of crime. Operates Kids Haven, a joint program with city and county governments to reduce retraumatization to children being interviewed. Provides education, intervention, outreach, restoration, support groups and aftercare to domestic minor sex trafficking victims. Operates sex-trafficking hotline and therapeutic home.

Adult Day Services of the Tri-Cities 10 N. Washington St., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-586-5731,

$1.2 million

7/ 17/ 2


Salem Thompson, executive director

State (87%), U.S. government (5%), county (4%), foundations (1%), United Way (1%), individuals (1%), special events (1%). Individuals (57%), state (18%), foundations (12%), corporations (6%), special events (6%), United Way (1%). Medicaid/Medicare (80%), fee for service (10%), state (Aging and Long Term Care of SE WA Benton and Franklin Co.) (10%), foundations (<2%).

The National Children’s Reading Foundation 515 W. Entiat Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-735-9405,

$1.1 million7

6/ 4/ 0


Kristin Norell, CEO

Product revenue (99%), fee for service (1%).

Tri-Cities Cancer Center Foundation 7350 W. Deschutes Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-737-3413,

$1.08 million13

23/ 7/ 18


Jim Hall, chief philanthropy officer

Individuals (58%), corporations (42%), special events (30%), United Way (1%), third party events (1%).

Safe Harbor Support Center 1111 N. Grant Place, Kennewick, WA 99336 509-783-5734,


10/ 21/ DND


Sara Harpster, executive director


Provides classes and support for children and families affected by trauma and abuse. Operates My Friends Place, an overnight shelter for teens and young adults, and Sails Outlet, a volunteer-run thrift store.

Grace Clinic 800 W. Canal Drive, Kennewick, WA 99336 509-735-2300,


7/ 13/ 225


Mark Brault, CEO

Foundations (38%), individuals (24%), special events (19%), corporations (18%), United Way (2%).

Free clinic providing medical, dental and mental health services for low-income, uninsured adults in Benton-Franklin counties and Burbank, with nearly 7,600 patient visits in 2022.

Alzheimer’s Association Washington State Chapter (Richland Office) 609 The Parkway, Richland, WA 99352 509-321-4579, Benton Franklin Head Start 1549 S. Georgia Ave., Suite B, Richland, WA 99352 509-735-1062,

Fee for service (96.9%), grants and investments (1.17%), special events (1.09%), product revenue (0.6%), individuals (0.24%). Fee for service (52%), foundations (10%), individuals (7%), special events, (7%), other (7%), U.S. government (4%), in-kind services (4%), corporations (3%), city (2%), county (2%). Foundations (48.8%), in-kind services (20.5%), individuals (12%), product revenue (8.4%), rental & investments (7%), corporations (3%), special events (0.2%).

Individuals (61%), campaigns (16%), corporations (15%), special events (4%), foundations (2%), endowment (2%). Fee for service (82.1%), product revenue (7.5%), special events (4.9%), individuals (2.4%), corporations (1.6%), foundations (1.5%).

Notes: *If budgets are the same, organizations are ranked alphabetically. Some figures have been rounded. Funding sources and descriptions of services may have been edited for space. ¹Benton-Franklin counties operations only. ²Fiscal year ends Dec. 31, 2023, unless otherwise noted. ³May include part-time and seasonal workers. 4Percentages may not equal 100. Not all funding sources are included. 5Information may not include all services. 6Budget, staff and programs reflect Second Harvest’s 26-county service area. 7Fiscal year ended June 30, 2023. 8From the 2022 Salvation Army Northwest Division Report. Reflects three-state service area. 9Up to 70 volunteers during some events, depending on the season. 10Fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2023. 1116 are active volunteers. 12Reflects Alzheimer’s Association’s Washington state chapter service area. 13From 2021 tax Form 990. 14Fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 2023. DND means did not disclose. FTE means full-time equivalent.

Provides crucial end-of-life care for patients and their families. Services include hospice and palliative care, free adult and children’s grief care and critical incident stress management. Supports and empowers individuals with disabilities and life barriers through employment services, specialized job training, career opportunities, centers for social enrichment. Offers a wide range of programs for youth at 29 local club sites with programs focused on academic success, healthy lifestyles, and good character and citizenship. Provides orthopaedic education and donates orthopaedic instruments and implants to hospitals in low- and middle-income countries. Designs and manufactures about 30,000 implants a year.

Serves to elevate the health of the community. Provides support for services, programs and equipment for Kadlec Regional Medical Center. Hospice care, adult palliative care, pediatric palliative care, grief support and adult family home. School-age child care, day camp, non-competitive and competitive sports, outreach center and special events. Provides students with community of support, empowering them to stay in school. Coordinates a comprehensive range of services to support all the needs of these students – academic and non-academic. Provides resettlement for 325 refugees annually; immigration legal service; employment services; parolee assistance; housing and utility assistance; mental health and intensive case management.

Provides continuing care for adults who require medical care for dementia-related deficiencies and developmental delays and speech, occupational, and physical therapy in a nursing-supervised environment. Offers READY! For Kindergarten program that supports schools and communities by providing school readiness programs to help children succeed. Provides services in the areas of prevention, early detection, treatment and survivorship of cancer. Supports services and patients of the Kadlec TriCities Cancer Center.

Sources: Representatives and websites of the organizations listed. Information current as of Nov. 7, 2023. List compiled by Rachel Visick. Copyright 2023 by Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.



Largest Social-Service Nonprofits Organization Name Address Phone, Website

2022-23 Budget


No. of Board Members/ Employees3/ Volunteers

Year Est. Here

Top Local Executive


Ranked by 2022-23 budget*

Highest-Percentage4 Funding Sources

Description of Services5

Individuals (71%), corporations (13%), churches (7%), special events (6%), foundation (1%), United Way (1%), civic clubs (1%). U.S. government (50%), state (20%), foundations (9%), individuals (8%), United Way (5%), corporations (4%), churches (3.5%).

Rehema for Kids 1360 N. Louisiana St., #A-130, Kennewick, WA 99336 509-405-8677,


9/ 2/ 15


Estha Madeira, executive director

B5 Learning Center 505 S. Olympia St., #B5, Kennewick, WA 99336 509-491-1226,


7/ 16/ 50


Theresa Roosendaal, executive director

Dispute Resolution Center of Tri-Cities 5219 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite 11, Kennewick, WA 99336 509-579-1238,


7/ 3/ 30


Paul A. Shelp, executive director

State (69%), fee for service (20%), foundations (5%), county (5%), individuals (1%).

Provides mediation and conflict resolution services to the courts in both counties and to the general public. Provides conflict resolution training.

Impact Compassion Center 220 W. Kennewick Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-579-0006,


4/ 10/ 7513


Jennifer Felicitas, executive director and founder


Provides outreach days, mental health counseling, care coordination, homeless and employment case management, Communities4Change program.

Girl Scouts of Eastern Washington and Northern Idaho 6119 Burden Blvd., Suite D, Pasco, WA 99301 509-747-8091,


24/ 5/ DND


Brian Newberry, CEO


Provides opportunities for girls to explore STEM, outdoors, financial literacy, civic engagement and more in a unique all-girl environment with curriculum designed specifically for girls.

Hope Medical of Washington 7500 W. Arrowhead Ave., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-396-7737,


7/ 8/ 4


Richard Parker, executive director

Individuals (83%), special events (10%), churches (5%), United Way (1%), in-kind services (1%).

Pregnancy testing, limited OB ultrasounds, STI testing, RN consultations and health education, fertility awareness programs.

Therapeutic Riding of Tri-Cities 104 E. 41st Place, Kennewick, WA 99337 509-412-0112,


9/ 3.5 FTE/ 125


Cynthia MacFarlan, executive director

Forge Youth Mentoring P.O. Box 1422, Richland, WA 99352 509-374-7657,


4/ 2/ 80


Todd Kleppin, national director

Modern Living Services P.O. Box 7046, Kennewick, WA 99336 509-318-5052,


11/ 1/ 11


Ray Geimer, president

Fee for service (50%), special events (50%).

Edith Bishel Center for the Blind and Visually Impaired 628 N. Arthur St., Kennewick, WA 99336 509-735-0699,


8/ 2/ 30


Shanna V. Larter, executive administrator

Foundations (30%), special events (25%), product revenue (20%), fee for service (15%), individuals (10%).

Low vision clinics, retail store, social/support groups, lab.

Friends of Disabled Veterans 2816 S. Tacoma St., Kennewick, WA 99337 509-308-0409,


4/ 0/ 50+


Brian Moore, founder

In-kind service (47%), special events (30%), corporations (8%), foundations (8%), individuals (5%), United Way (2%).

Operates The Ranch, where veterans and their family and friends can rebuild bonds through shared outdoor experiences; matches veterans with community resources through donations, volunteers and advocacy.

Special events (40%), corporations (20%), foundations (19.7%), fee for service (12.3%), individuals (8%), in-kind services (2%), United Way (1%). Corporations (29%), individuals (24%), foundations (18%), United Way (14%), special events (9%), in-kind services (6%).

Notes: *If budgets are the same, organizations are ranked alphabetically. Some figures have been rounded. Funding sources and descriptions of services may have been edited for space. ¹Benton-Franklin counties operations only. ²Fiscal year ends Dec. 31, 2023, unless otherwise noted. ³May include part-time and seasonal workers. 4Percentages may not equal 100. Not all funding sources are included. 5Information may not include all services. 6Budget, staff and programs reflect Second Harvest’s 26-county service area. 7Fiscal year ended June 30, 2023. 8From the 2022 Salvation Army Northwest Division Report. Reflects three-state service area. 9Up to 70 volunteers during some events, depending on the season. 10Fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2023. 1116 are active volunteers. 12Reflects Alzheimer’s Association’s Washington state chapter service area. 13From 2021 tax Form 990. 14Fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 2023. DND means did not disclose. FTE means full-time equivalent.

WORLD RELIEF, From page A1 ma. The current U.S. presidential administration determines the number of refugees accepted in the country each fiscal year, and the Biden administration increased the number to 125,000 in fiscal years 2022 and 2023, the highest it’s been in decades. During the Trump administration, the number was as low as 18,000. That’s meant the local World Relief office has been increasingly busy. Last fiscal year, the office had 204 refugee arrivals in the Tri-Cities; this year, 325 are expected. The office also helps “humanitarian parolees,” or people who arrive in the U.S. and seek asylum. The Richland office last year helped more than 700 people in that category who fled the war in Ukraine. Primus said he’s not sure if the TriCities will see any refugees from the Israel-Hamas war. “It all depends on our government’s response,” he said, noting that, “our refugees generally come to us from U.N. refugee camps, where people can wait seven years or longer before being received by another country. In Afghani-

stan and Ukraine, the administration made special provisions for people fleeing those wars to be eligible for federal funding.” He added that, “we are prepared to receive anyone seeking peace and security for their family, regardless of faith or nationality. Whether we will receive any refugees from the Israel-Hamas conflict, or from the Sudanese and Somali civil wars, is up to our elected officials.” World Relief provides a variety of services, from greeting refugees at the airport upon arrival, to setting up apartments, helping navigate social services and assisting with employment. As the office has ramped up its pace and added staff, it also physically expanded, taking over the entire second floor of its home at 2600 N. Columbia Center Blvd., Suite 206. The office now has 4,201 square feet of space, up from 2,955 square feet. Primus said the landlord handled the construction required to update and rearrange the second floor of the building that’s also home to Ted Brown Music among other businesses. The rent increased by about $25,000 annually as a

Rescue abused and orphaned children in Kenya to stop the cycle of generational poverty through education. Supports refugees and immigrants through education and relationships. Offers English language acquisition classes for adults; citizenship classes; programs for preschoolers, K-8 and high schoolers.

Provides people with disabilities animal-assisted therapies and activities to help with physical, psychological and social challenges. Six programs for all ages. Provides one-to-one mentoring for youth ages 7-22 in need of supportive adult role models; offers Experience Partners program for educational and skills learning opportunities with individuals and companies. Provides independent housing options, life skills and educational resources to developmentally disabled individuals. Operates two housing communities and is in process of adding a third.

Sources: Representatives and websites of the organizations listed. Information current as of Nov. 7, 2023. List compiled by Rachel Visick. Copyright 2023 by Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

result of the change. The local World Relief has a budget of $4 million, with most coming from government funding and about 10% from donations. Primus said the office always is in need of donations and volunteers. The work it does it meaningful and important, he said. “We serve God by serving his people. If someone makes the difficult decision to flee their own country, we try to help make a home for them in the Tri-Cities,” he said. “They’re coming here because they just need a fresh start. They’re looking to make that start here in America.” Primus is a Tri-Cities native who graduated from Pasco High School and then went on to Washington State University before joining the Army. He retired at the rank of colonel. He came upon an advertisement for the World Relief director job and it seemed like the right position for him. Some of the refugees served by the local office – and some of the staff members who work there – are from places he spent time in during his military service.

“It’s a fit. God put me here,” Primus told the Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business. “Whatever I did in the military was to prepare me for this.” For Primus, working with World Relief has a direct connection to his Christian faith. The agency’s mission comes straight from the Bible, although Primus notes that World Relief serves people of all faiths, has staff members of varying faiths and doesn’t evangelize. “The phrases ‘stranger,’ ‘sojourner,’ ‘foreigner’ – everyone understands that the Bible urges us to support the widow and orphan, but those phrases are used more often when it comes to telling us to reach out and help. The story of the Good Samaritan is where we take our calling. We’re all God’s children and should treat each other with the same love he shows for us. That’s our motivation,” he said. World Relief needs donations and volunteers, including for the Good Neighbor program it’s starting up in which community members provide friendship and support to newly arriving refugee families. Go to:



Thank you to all our sponsors who made this event a success!


Tri-Cities Chaplaincy revives its palliative care program By Sara Schilling

Tri-Cities Chaplaincy has revived its palliative care program after a pandemicrelated pause. And while the program has been restructured a bit and now has a smaller patient load, its mission remains the same: to help people who are dealing with an advanced illness. “Palliative care is that added layer of support. Patients can still receive treatment; they can still go see all their doctors and providers if they’d like to and need to. But we just come in and walk alongside them,” said Meiske Millward, Chaplaincy’s chief clinical officer. That means help with pain and symptom management, emotional and spiritual support, planning for future care and more. Chaplaincy’s palliative care team includes the agency’s medical director, a nurse practitioner, social worker, chaplain and others. The program reopened in June and had served 18 patients by the end of October. It has capacity for 30 total, but capacity will grow as more providers are added, Millward said. Before the program shut down at the end of 2020, amid the Covid-19 pandemic, it was serving more than 100 patients. But Chaplaincy officials have narrowed the scope in this new incarnation, with the program now geared toward people who are moving toward hospice care. In hospice, patients have a life expectancy of six months or less and are no longer receiving curative treatment, such as chemotherapy or radiation. Instead, the focus is comfort and peace. Palliative care, meanwhile, is designed to work in sync with curative treatment. In the program, “we can help with quality of life – making sure patients are living the best life possible,” Millward said. Along with palliative and hospice care services, Chaplaincy also offers grief support, Cork’s Place Kids Grief Center, crisis support and more. The agency dates to 1971, when a group of local churches joined forces to reach out to people in jails, nursing homes and those facing death and dealing with grief. The agency added hospice services about a decade later. Chaplaincy has made some changes recently to invest in programs that serve its overall mission “to guide our community members to live their best lives, even and especially through the end of life.” Those changes include closing its Richland thrift store, which operated in the

red, and restructuring and relocating the Cork’s Place program, a move that officials have said allowed the agency to consolidate resources and Meiske Millward create a more integrated and comprehensive support system. Alane Wilkerson, marketing and communications supervisor for Chaplaincy, said bringing back the palliative care program is another way the agency contributes to the community. Palliative care is “another tool in the community’s toolbox” to help people with serious illness, she said. In November, Chaplaincy officials are encouraging Tri-Citians to have “courageous conversations” about the kind of end-of-life care they want when the time comes. The campaign is in honor of National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. In the Tri-City region, only 20% to 30% of community members have advance directives when in the hospital, the agency said in a statement. An advance directive is a legal document that provides instructions for medical care when the patient can’t speak for themselves. When such a document is in place, patients spend fewer days in the hospital – 10 fewer days, on average, the statement said. “That translates to 10 days of comfort and memories for patients rather than hospital rooms at the end of life,” it said. Hospice or palliative care might be part of those conversations. Millward said that patients and loved ones are sometimes hesitant to explore those services as options when illness becomes advanced. It’s difficult to talk about death and dying. But it’s best to explore options and begin receiving care as soon as possible, she said. “Hospice or palliative care do nothing to hasten death. It’s not going to change the outcome, but it can change the quality of life,” she said. “There are so many important things that can be done, and getting onto these services can help provide time for discussions with family, to rebuild relationships and connections, to make your wishes (about end-of-life) known. Being able to make your wishes known and have those discussions leads to a better quality of life at the end.” Go to:




Is the nonprofit advocating or lobbying? The answer can affect tax-exempt status During a lunch with an executive director of a local charity that currently qualifies as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3), I heard him remark that he is a constant advocate for both his organization and the laws that impact its success and mission. Being an advocate for his organization is commendable and probably expected, but how much advocacy is too much, pushing the organization over the line and risking tax-exempt status? Let’s try to break it down. The law provides some clear-cut conditions for tax-exempt status for a 501(c)(3). An organization can only keep tax-exempt status if: (1) it “does not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distributing of statements), any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to)

any candidate for public office” and (2) “no substantial part of the activities” of the charity are “attempting to influence legislation.” Note, there are Beau Ruff two parts to the Cornerstone law cited above. Wealth Strategies Each requires a GUEST COLUMN separate analysis to determine whether the charity meets the conditions. The first part is seemingly straightforward. A 501(c)(3) is absolutely prohibited from participating in any political campaign

for any candidate for public office. Violating this part alone risks tax-exempt status. But there is room for tax-exempt entities to participate in nonpartisan activities. For example, the charity might offer education or encouragement to voters to engage in the political process or it might encourage voter registration or host candidate forums. The second part of the law cited above is less straightforward. It allows a 501(c)(3) to attempt to influence legislation so long as it is not “substantial.” Put another way, the law allows 501(c)(3)s to freely engage in lobbying so long as it is only “insubstantial.” The question then is: “What is ‘substantial?’” The standard test to determine this is a facts and circumstances test (usually called

the “substantial part test”). In this test, the IRS considers a variety of factors, including expenditures, time spent, nature and extent of influence, etc., that are largely outlined in Part II-B of Schedule C to the nonprofit’s annual IRS Form 990. If the IRS determines that the 501(c) (3) has engaged in substantial activities to influence legislation, then that 501(c)(3) may lose its tax-exempt status and incur an excise tax on lobbying expenditures. People in charge of the entity should take note as the managers may also get hit with personal liability for making such expenditures with knowledge that it might lead to loss of tax-exempt status. uRUFF, Page A36


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Benton County cemetery seeks help before it runs out of space By Kristina Lord

Headstones bearing the Wallace family name stretch out in a long line at the Evergreen Cemetery outside Benton City. They mark the final resting place of Steve Wallace’s parents, grandparents and other relatives. Wallace, 67, hopes to continue the line but the 2.5-acre cemetery at 7 W. Corral Creek Road will likely be out of room within the next 18 months. “It’s not just my family. Some of the original settlers of the area – everyone – went there. And this cemetery has been going on for 111 years now, and it’s running out of space. It just happened to fall on my watch,” Wallace said. Wallace is president of the KionaBenton Cemetery Association, which manages the Benton County cemetery that opened in 1912, before World War I. He’s been president for about three years, but he grew up around the cemetery. He raked leaves there as a boy and helped dig graves while home on leave from the Air Force. The cemetery is home to men who served during the first World War and many citizens born in the late 1800s, such as Erva Grace Kelso, a 2-monthold who died in 1898. Wallace’s grandfather, James Orville Wallace, born in 1888, is buried there near his wife, Edith, who was born in 1894. Wallace has already bought plots

Photo by Kristina Lord Steve Wallace kneels between his parents’ graves at the Evergreen Cemetery in Benton City. Wallace, president of the Kiona-Benton Cemetery Association, wants to expand the cemetery to the 2 acres visible to the right of him to ensure the cemetery has room to grow to continue to serve the community.

there for himself and his wife. Wallace wants to ensure the cemetery’s legacy is preserved for generations to come.

Bill and Gloria Wolfe do, too. They donated money to buy the 2 acres adjacent to the cemetery for the expansion, but the cemetery associa-

tion can’t afford to install irrigation or a parking lot. “We really want to see these 2 acres get developed so we can start utilizing it before we go out of business. I mean, to me, it’s critical. This is important to me,” Wallace said. The process to buy the land has been challenging, Wallace said, as the sale is contingent on Benton County approval. The cemetery association has to secure a conditional use permit for the expansion and complete an environmental review with the state Department of Ecology. Wallace and his wife, Virginia, say they’ve had numerous meetings and dealt with a lot of paperwork and government agencies, including the health department, irrigation district, clean air authority and road department. “We have been running around like bandits and trying to figure out how to process this. And we do all this volunteer,” Virginia said. Five board members and three officers serve on the cemetery association. The group pays three people to keep it running: a secretary/treasurer, a groundskeeper and a sexton who digs the graves and installs the headstones. “And now we need some of the rest of the community to step up and help us purchase things like irrigation and grass and put a little parking area,” Wallace said. He also needs volunteers to help uCEMETERY, Page A36



RUFF, From page A33 If the lack of clear cut rules under the “substantial part test” cause the taxexempt entity concern, there is another option. The tax-exempt entity can choose to forgo the “substantial part test” in favor of a more definitive (and likely more generous) test: the so-called “expenditure test.” By election under 501(h) (through form 5768), a nonprofit can choose the expenditure test in place of the substantial part test. The expenditure test allows a public charity to make lobbying expenditures up to a ceiling amount for each taxable year and to separately make grass roots expenditures up to a ceiling amount for each taxable year and still maintain their tax-exempt status. Both types of expenditures (“lobbying” and “grassroots”) are generally defined as expenditures for the

purpose of influencing legislation. The distinction is that “grassroots” refers to attempts to affect opinions of the general public while “lobbying” generally involves attempts to influence through communication with those who participate directly in the creation of the legislation. The ceiling amounts contemplated under the expenditure test are specific to the charity and determined in accordance with the law. To give a general sense, the amount determined under section 4911 for lobbying is generally between 5%-20% of exempt purpose allowable expenditures (i.e., those expenditures that generally do qualify to support the charity’s tax-exempt purpose). The ceiling amount for grass roots expenditures is then 25% of the ceiling amount allowable for nontaxable lobbying (determined in the previous

calculation). Many charities are well-served by making the 501(h) election so that they have simple and clear rules to follow to allow them to best position themselves to maintain tax-exempt status. The rules outlined above are nuanced and don’t necessarily apply equally to all types of tax-exempt entities (e.g., churches and private foundations). The IRS provides training on its website that delves into the issues outlined above in much more detail. Tax-exempt entities should always consult tax professionals to discuss specific levels of lobbying and participation in politics. Beau Ruff, a licensed attorney and certified financial planner, is the director of planning at Cornerstone Wealth Strategies.


43 years of combined experience

Kristina Lord Executive Editor

Sara Schilling Reporter

(509) 737-8778 |

NONPROFITS HABERLING, From page A28 remains the same. St. Francis Animal Shelter still doesn’t pay taxes on the $100,000 it receives, but the IRA skips the probate process. This means the animal shelter receives its funds faster, allowing it to quickly deploy funds to assist the vulnerable population it serves. Even more importantly, Barbara has shifted $100,000 of the taxable portion of her estate to an entity that doesn’t have to pay taxes and, if her son is in the 22% tax bracket, she just saved him $22,000 in taxes, more if he happens to be in a higher tax bracket. Charitable giving can be an important part of leaving a legacy. When crafting your charitable vision, it is important to remember that assets are treated differently from a tax perspective by their recipients. A well-defined estate plan that takes charitable giving into account will get those assets to charities in the quickest way possible and reduce the tax liability for those beneficiaries who don’t have a 501(c)(3) status. Nicholas Haberling is a partnership advisor at Community First Bank & HFG Trust in Kennewick. CEMETERY, From page A35 do the work. Wallace said the association also would like to add more benches and niches, which can hold cremated remains. “It saves a lot if you expand vertically instead of horizontally,” he said. But those are luxuries, Wallace pointed out. “Right now, we have got to get the irrigation and the grass in and a little parking area. That’s critically important. If we can’t, then how are we going to preserve a legacy? It’s been here for over a hundred years,” he said. Wallace said the group needs $20,000 to $25,000 to complete the project. If more is raised, the money will go toward buying niches, trees or benches. Since the association is a nonprofit, any donation is tax deductible. “Any donation is better than no donation,” he said. On average, the cemetery sees 15 burials a year. It costs $4,400 for a traditional burial space and Evergreen Cemetery is known for being cheapest in the area, Wallace said. “When this started getting out that we were running out of space, we had an onslaught of people buying lots. They didn’t have anybody who died in the family, but they wanted to be buried there so a lot of them got bought real fast over the summer,” he said.

How to donate To make a donation, make checks payable to Kiona-Benton Cemetery Association and mail to: Kiona-Benton Cemetery Association, P.O. Box 117, Benton City, Washington, 99320. A GoFundMe page also has been set up to accept donations: gofundme. com/f/development-of-the-new-areaof-evergreen-cemetery.




Ways to make charitable gifts have more of an impact Charitable giving brings fulfillment and joy, both for those whose lives benefit from the donation and for the donors dedicated to that generosity, as our team has witnessed countless times. As financial professionals, we are also dedicated to making financial generosity be as impactful as possible. The impacts of charitable donations also regularly run at cross purposes with taxes (since we rarely find donors eager to contribute to the IRS). Following the rise in the standard deduction for federal income tax in 2017, far fewer taxpayers have itemized deductions in general, including itemizing charitable distributions. There are other ways to maximize the financial impact of charitable donations, however. I want to spotlight one tool in particular, the qualified charitable distribution (QCD).

What is a QCD? QCD refers to a charitable donation made from an individual retirement account (IRA). Because funds taken from an IRA (called “distributions”) count as income for the retiree, a QCD’s status as a charitable donation can yield tax benefits. Only IRA owners aged 70 ½ or older are eligible to make QCDs, but there are distinct opportunities and benefits to them. Potential benefits There are at least two tax benefits that IRA owners eligible to make QCDs should explore. One benefit has to do with required minimum distributions (RMDs), the annual amount that IRA owners must take out or face tax penalties. The IRS imposes this requirement to ensure that they receive taxes in a timely manner. QCDs can count toward this distribution, up to a limit of $100,000 ($200,000 for eligible couples). Thus, making a QCD can help meet the IRS requirement in a taxefficient way. Another potential benefit involves Medicare charges. Depending on income (which can include distributions from an IRA), a Medicare recipient might be charged Medicare income-related monthly adjustment amount (known as IRMAA Medicare charges), based on adjusted gross income (AGI) levels. A QCD does not count toward AGI, so a taxpayer’s AGI could be lowered and result in lower Medicare costs. Timing and tracking matter So what’s the catch? The timing and reporting of the QCDs can make the difference between receiving the financial benefits or not. In the case of RMDs, the IRS automatically reckons the first distributions of a tax year as counting toward RMDs, so the later a QCD in the year, the less it might count toward the total RMD. In the case of AGI, the advantage is particular to a QCD. A donation of the same amount paid from a different account, for example, might not reduce AGI at all. Prepare and plan If the opportunities and options for a QCD resonate with you or a loved one, I encourage you to work with appropriate professionals who can determine the best actions for your specific financial situation. Especially because the timing and reporting of QCDs shape the financial consequences,

a knowledgeable professional can likewise make sure the process yields the best results for you and the charitable cause. Do prepare Kaitilin Newman and plan but bring Piton Wealth both passion and GUEST COLUMN planning to bear on your contributions to charitable causes. Where you have a passion to donate your time by volunteering for an organization, that is a good sign

that you trust that a financial contribution would likewise lead to the results that you want. Both pragmatically and emotionally, it also makes a difference when you personally know one or more people who serve the organization administratively or volunteer their time in other ways. Knowing people whose lives have benefited directly from an organization’s work is another thoughtful and generous way to explore where to direct your generous instincts. No matter what organizations you are considering, though, do some homework and research for your planning. It is always a good idea to include a search in two online resources.

At the IRS, make sure that the organization legally a tax-exempt organization (irs. gov/charities-non-profits/tax-exempt-organization-search). The Charity Navigator (charitynavigator. org) also hosts a range of good information about charitable organizations, especially so that you can get a sense of how much of your donations goes directly to the cause and beware of organizations where administrative overhead constitutes too much of their activity. Kaitilin Newman is a chartered retirement planning counselor and wealth advisor at Piton Wealth in Kennewick, as well as owner of Wine Social in Richland.


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TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 PETERSEN, From page A9 few, and I have no doubt his name will go down in history with the likes of Sam Volpentest and Bob Ferguson. He will be deeply missed.” Before joining TRIDEC, Petersen worked for PNNL’s International Nuclear Safety Program, visiting Chernobyl and Soviet-designed nuclear reactors in several countries, before retiring in April 2003. Prior to this, he served as PNNL’s director of communications for nine years. “Gary Petersen will go down in history as one of the greatest champions the Tri-Cities has ever known,” said David Reeploeg, Petersen’s successor as vice president for federal programs at TRIDEC. “As a former congressional staffer, I got to see firsthand just how effective an advocate Gary was for Hanford cleanup, PNNL, nuclear energy and the entire community. Gary was a giant, and the Tri-Cities will forever be a better place because of him.” Reeploeg said he last visited Petersen in the spring, but they exchanged emails on a fairly regular basis. “In addition to everything he did for the Tri-City community, Gary was also an incredible mentor to me as I worked to fill his very big shoes. I will always treasure my friendship with Gary, and I will miss him dearly,” he said. Karl Dye, president and chief executive officer of TRIDEC, called Petersen a Tri-City legend. “From the top of Rattlesnake to the Hanford Reach and down to the mouth of the Snake River, Gary Petersen loved the Tri-Cities and had a story for every corner of our community. He is and always will be a legend who, along with Sam Volpentest, Bob Ferguson and others, laid the foundation upon which the future of the Tri-Cities continues to be built,” Dye said in a statement. Petersen was born in Everett, graduated from Omak High School, and served in the Army as a foreign correspondent in Korea. Petersen was a proud graduate of Washington State University, where he served as editor of The Daily Evergreen. After college, he worked at Ford Motor Co. in Detroit but wasn’t excited about it and moved to the Tri-Cities in 1965 to work for Battelle, he said in an interview with the Atomic Heritage Foundation. Within the last year or so, Petersen and his wife moved to the Boise, Idaho, area to be closer to his daughters and grandchildren, Reeploeg said. He recently received treatment for cancer and pneumonia. A memorial Mass is set for 1 p.m. Nov. 18 at Christ the King Catholic Church, 1111 Stevens Drive, Richland, followed by an interment at Sunset Memorial Gardens in Richland. An open house and celebration of life follows from 3-5 p.m. at Ste. Michelle Wine Estates WSU Wine Science Center on University Drive in Richland. Wearing Coug gear is encouraged. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Gary R. & Margaret E. Petersen Fund at Washington State University at This endowment will provide ongoing student scholarships. Donations are tax-deductible.


State’s 2022 ag value hits record high of $12.8 billion The value of Washington’s 2022 agricultural production totaled $12.8 billion, shattering the previous record high of $10.4 billion in 2015. The top five commodities in the state in 2022 were, in order, applies, milk, wheat, cattle/calves and potatoes. Apples were valued at more than $2 billion, up 3% from the previous year. They represented 16% of the total ag value in 2022, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service.


All wheat, valued at $1.17 million, represented the third highest value in the state, with a 55% increase from the previous year, and up from fourth in the state rankings in 2021. Potatoes rounded out the top five with a value of $943 million, up 32% from the previous year.

Arlington National Cemetery. Pasco residents and local businesses are invited to sponsor wreaths for the 950 veterans at City View. The sponsorship deadline is Nov. 28. For details, go to:

Pasco joins Wreaths Across America campaign

Paid Family & Medical Leave premiums will decrease slightly next year, to 0.74% from 0.8%, the Washington state Employment Security Department announced. Employers will pay 29% of the premiums, and employees will pay 71%, which is similar to this year’s ratio, according to ESD.

The city of Pasco is participating in “Wreaths Across America” for the first time this year. Wreaths will be placed on the graves of veterans at City View Cemetery in Pasco as part of the national movement, which started in 1992 at

Paid leave premiums to decrease next year





6 common mistakes leaders make and how to avoid them If you’re a leader, I’m sure you can think of a few mistakes you have made, or make, regularly. Similarly, if you have supervisors, what mistakes do you see them make? I have an entire presentation on the six common mistakes leaders make. They include: • Not celebrating people. • Going it alone; being disconnected. • Not having growth plans. • Poor time management. • Going to extremes in leadership. • Letting bad attitudes prevail. I’m here to share what I believe are the top two mistakes from this list: not celebrating people and letting bad attitudes prevail. To help you, I’ve included several ways to avoid each mistake and increase team health and unity.

Celebrating your team We have a tendency to lean toward the negative aspects of a job due to stress. So, left without a leadership cheerleader, team morale naturally takes a downward turn. Your people are responsible for their own motivation, but I believe it’s a leader’s job to keep stoking their fire, with his or her affirmation and recognition. Here are ways to celebrate your people and bring out the best in them: • Be a positive climate-creator. Organizations become shadows of their leaders. Leaders set the relational temperature in every group they lead. One of my favorite quotes is by author and former

U.S. Navy Seal Jocko Willink, “Every problem is a leadership problem.” • A cheerful hello plants a positive seed in each employee’s Paul Casey psyche. Growing Forward • Do not crush Services people who make GUEST COLUMN mistakes. Instead praise their risktaking and try to help them identify what they learned from it. Nurture the intrapreneur spirit. • Displaying a great sense of humor. Humor builds bridges between people. When visiting organizations, I notice that positive banter in the hallways is sometimes a sign of a closely-knit team. • Affirm your people. At work, people need more affirmation, inspiration and recognition. I add these to the calendar and try to do them on the spot. • Send kudos and encouraging emails. • Hand write personal encouraging notes or leave positive voicemails. • Offer public praise in meetings and in team or organization publications. Doing it in front of others doubles the effect. • Praise them when introducing them to others. • Letters of commendation – to be included in their file and for their direct supervisors to read.

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• Meet one-on-one with staff at least monthly. They get your full attention. • Give gifts or awards customized to the performer. It shows you have noticed their contribution. • Simply say, “Thank you.” They are the two most important words. • Throw parties for achievements. Take any chance you get to celebrate. Administrative Professionals Day, Support Staff Day and Boss’s Day are all good opportunities to do something special. How about when a big project is accomplished, or a goal was reached? Celebrating makes people feel like winners and creates an atmosphere of positive energy. Celebrate people so they feel like a winner, not a number. • Listen well. It’s validating. Make a point to listen to understand rather than listening to respond.

Banish bad attitudes Leaders may avoid dealing with poor attitudes out of fear or laziness. After all, it takes a lot of energy. But if not handled, everyone suffers. The culture goes negative. Customers eventually notice and lose confidence. Focus is lost. Consider these ideas: • Manage your own sour attitude. Take time off to refocus if necessary. You don’t have the right to bring a bad attitude to work when in a leadership position as it casts a shadow over the team. • Deal with the poor attitudes of team members. Taking no action is an action. If

tolerated, it can become part of the culture or norm. The broken windows theory of criminology suggests that visible signs of disorder and neglect, such as broken windows or graffiti, can encourage further crime and anti-social behavior as they signal lack of order and law enforcement. This same idea can be applied in an organization facing poor attitudes and low morale. When working to regain a positive work environment, I usually approach softly – seeking to understand – and gradually move toward probation and performance improvement plans if there is no change. • Be willing to give candid, rigorous performance reviews and real-time feedback in between. • On the flip side, reward those who are exemplifying your staff values, who are adding value to the team. What gets rewarded, gets done. Remember, improving the work environment is an ongoing process that requires commitment and adaptability. By focusing on correcting these two common leadership mistakes you can create a more positive and productive workplace. Paul D. Casey lives in the Tri-Cities and is the owner of Growing Forward Services, which aims to equip and coach leaders and teams to spark breakthrough success. He also is the executive director of Leadership Tri-Cities.




Tri-Cities phlebotomist makes house calls for blood draw services By Laura Kostad

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

Instead of waiting to roll up your sleeve for blood work at a busy lab, ask for a house call instead. Charlette Glines will bring her blood draw kit and come to your home or office. The owner of LabCall Mobile Phlebotomy Services has 20 years’ experience and certification from the American Society for Clinical Pathology. Glines recognized a need for concierge blood draw services performed in the comfort of home, work or wherever is most convenient for the patient. It can be challenging and stressful to get into a lab for a blood draw, especially if you don’t have a car, have limited mobility, are short on time, or are immunocompromised. Having to fast, take time off work or coordinate child care can further complicate the matter. “It seemed like something people needed,” Glines said. “My grandma needed it; my sister needed it. I would do my grandma’s (blood draws) before I would go to work sometimes.” Over the years, Glines has worked in the local hospitals as well as other lab service providers. “You get a lot of experience,” she said. “When I saw people coming in in wheelchairs, it sparked the question, ‘Why do they need to come to me when I can come to them?’” A year ago, she decided to take the leap

Photo by Laura Kostad

Charlette Glines started LabCall Mobile Phlebotomy Services after recognizing a need for blood draw house calls. and give the concept a chance to prove itself. “It’s been a dream of mine to open my own business,” Glines said, adding that the realization she could spin her own business off a skill she had cultivated for two decades was an exciting prospect. She said that other area labs used to offer in-home blood draw services but they have discontinued the service. “I feel like I’m the person who had to do it, who was meant to do it,” she said.

She is the only mobile phlebotomist in Tri-Cities. Seattle and Yakima have mobile phlebotomists.

How it works Glines requires anyone seeking her services to book an appointment in advance online. Payment is collected at the time of booking. Her standard fee is $65 for labs drawn between 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Early morning draws from 5-7 a.m. cost $85. Short notice calls within 48 hours of labs needing to be

drawn run $95, and “stat” calls at her soonest availability run $120. LabCall does not bill insurance. “The cost of service is a convenience fee for saving them a trip,” she said. When booking an appointment, LabCall will take insurance details which Glines includes with the patients’ blood samples when she drops them off at the lab of their choice. Doctors can fax lab orders to her directly or patients can upload a copy when booking an appointment. LabCall serves all ages, from newborn babies to senior citizens. LabCall is especially great for those with standing orders because patients can set up recurring appointments, helping to ensure labs are drawn punctually, she said. Steve White, owner of Pacific Clinic in Kennewick, has been thrilled to partner with LabCall to fulfill the needs of the clinic’s patients. After acquiring Pacific Clinic, White and his team expanded the business to include primary care services. “We are expanding into more home medical care,” he said. “... We’re really going into the senior market at home.” White said many clients can’t make it in because they don’t have a ride or they have medical issues, so Pacific Clinic’s team builds programs for them to do at home. “The world of phlebotomy, it’s not something we really wanted to go into business in and do ourselves, but then we found Charlette and it’s just really helped us. uLABCALL, Page A44




Longtime reseller offers big bargains in bin concept By Robin Wojtanik

for Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

A new Pasco liquidation store offers customers steep bargains on a whole assortment of goods, with most items priced at $5 or less daily. The inventory changes rapidly, as the employees don’t know day to day what they’ll find inside the shipments. And for those customers willing to roll the dice, buyers can become sellers – purchasing an entire pallet of unknown goods with the intention to resell, and possibly make five times their initial investment. Bargain4LessUSA x Johnny’s Hot Dealz is run not by Johnny, but by franchisee Aaron Natasiri, who first got his start in the resale market hocking used video games. “I was like a mini Gamestop,” he said. After initial success, Natasiri turned his sights to televisions and grew a relationship with Sony and Microsoft sellers in Asia. He says his small business, T-Vision, became a major player in the local electronics market. “My main competitor was Best Buy when I was selling TVs. I became the TV guy for the Tri-Cities, and I did that for six years. I wanted to go beyond TVs, so I had to look into general merchandise,” he said. Now in liquidation for nearly a decade, he partnered with namesake Johnny Dimas to open the store at 528 W. Clark St. in Pasco, which shares a building with restaurant AMOR A Mexico. Bargain4LessUSA opened in late October and Natasiri said, as a liquidator broker,

Kevin McClure Store Manager

Hometown | Richland

Photo by Robin Wojtanik Aaron Natasiri stands inside Bargain4LessUSA at 528 W. Clark St., Pasco. The longtime reseller is a liquidator broker offering entire pallets of goods from retailers like Amazon, Target, Home Depot, Costco and more.

he has a niche the other liquidators can’t easily compete with. “We are the only ones with contracts with distribution centers for retailers, including Amazon. We built here because of Amazon; our largest contracts are with them.” Two Amazon fulfillment centers were recently built in east Pasco but they have not yet opened. Natasiri said location is crucial due to the added costs faced when sellers source goods outside of their local region. “It can cost $4,000 more for shipping,” he said. He’s trying to move as many pallets as he can from retailers like Target, Home Depot, Costco and more, and Natasiri knows them all, along with the code names for what’s

inside. “Amazon has smalls, case packs, LPNs, 3 PNL, mystery box loads, gaylords, double stack, high piece counts, repetitive items; some are so small that you don’t sell them for more than $1, so you pick and choose.” At his store, Natasiri mainly resells items from Amazon’s ‘premium’ category, which often includes items that are returned, pulled from shelves, considered excess inventory, met the end of shelf life, or are even brand new. “It’s all a mix. We don’t get to choose what comes in,” Natasiri said. He doesn’t just unbox and sell items for $5, though he says he could still make money doing that. Bargain4LessUSA offers some higher val-

ued items at prices they target at 50% off retail, while also selling the pallets of goods themselves. “People are seeing it as a lucrative opportunity to start their own business and sell it at a yard sale or flea market. You have to be careful in this industry, though. People will say, ‘I can get you a cheap load,’ but it might be low quality. It’s definitely cutthroat, but we are very transparent,” he said. Part of that transparency is allowing potential buyers to look through the plastic wrap covering the top of the 6.5-foot cardboard boxes, known as a gaylord, and sold by Bargain4LessUSA at a flat rate of $1,200. “We’ve pulled $600 items out of these,” he said. Natasiri said sellers should expect at least 10% of items inside to be broken but claims the overall retail value of all goods can average $6,000 to $10,000. He said the highest valued single item he’s found was a piece of medical equipment worth $3,500 that he resold online. “eBay is your best friend on extravagant items,” he said. Natasiri’s goal is to make money and have others be successful in the “bin store” concept, citing the challenge of finding a well-paying job or a way to make supplemental income. “We don’t just sell items, we sell a system to build a store. We coach people on how to do it, whether it’s in person, or they can come under our franchise or open an online store or do private labeling and open uBARGAIN4LESS, Page A44



uBOARDS • VERTical Innovation Cluster has announced its inaugural board members. VERTical works with business and labor to solve challenges impeding the widescale deployment of nuclear and other advanced clean energy technologies. The founding board members include: Board Chair Ken Langdon, general manager for nuclear development at Energy Northwest (Washington). Langdon is a Navy veteran with experience in nuclear operations, site readiness and supply chain. Frederick P. Hughes, vice president of project direction, Mission Solutions Nuclear & Civil Group at Fluor Corporation (Idaho). Hughes has experience assembling and directing highperformance project teams and delivering

projects within a set schedule and budget. Jeff Whitt, president of Framatome U.S. Government Solutions (Virginia). Whitt has experience in nuclear reactor fabrication, design and technical management, and expanding U.S. infrastructure and capabilities. VERTical was established in January 2022 and is administered by the Port of Benton. • Shane Hughes of Planet Turf was elected president of the Northwest Turfgrass Association (NTA) by its board of directors. He spent the past year as the vice president of NTA. Hughes earned turfgrass management degrees at Walla Walla Community College and Washington State University, then returned to the Tri-Cities as the assistant superintendent at Canyon Lakes, where he worked for four years. He was the superintendent at

Zintel Creek Golf Club for six years and joined Planet Turf as the regional sales representative for southeastern Washington, eastern Oregon and southern Idaho in 2022. Hughes has been a recipient of the GCSAA Melrose Leadership Academy, the president of the Pacific Northwest branch of the Professional Grounds Management Society and a member of the Board of Directors of the Inland Empire Golf Course Superintendents Association. • Kennewick Kiwanis Club has installed new officers for 2023-24. Lt. Gov. Don Gibbard of Walla Walla was the installation officer. They are: Amy Mueller Coffman, president; Michelle DeGooyer, president elect; Penny Gardner, vice president; Maureen Bell, secretary; Chris Ingersoll, treasurer; and Tom Moak, past president. The directors

NETWORKING are Gerry Berges, Tyler Pearson, Russ Burtner, Josh Hanson, Rick Corson, Gloria Seeley, Chuck DeGooyer and Audrey Manley. • Five new board members have been elected to the Visit Tri-Cities Board of Directors: Angie Brotherton of Bechtel National, Jennifer Cunnington of Q Home Loans, Mike Hall of Ice Harbor Brewing Company, David McClain of TC Black and Gus Sako of The Octopus’ Garden. The board helps to progress the organization’s mission, vision and values, and assists in long-term planning and short-term strategies designed to increase tourism spending for the region. Each board member was identified by the Visit Tri-Cities’ nominating committee and will serve a three-year term. BARGAIN4LESS, From page A43 their own,” he said. Bargain4LessUSA is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, with restocking done every night and new items placed on the $5 tables or moved to a $1 table to really get them out the door. “We try to go through five gaylords a night. We can’t stop the trucks from coming in, so we have to clear the floor. Things are negotiable here, especially if you have a full cart,” he said. For frequent shoppers, the east Pasco store provides loyalty cards for both its single item sales and pallets, offering a discount on the sixth item, with the 11th item free. Natasiri is scouting locations to open a second Bargain4LessUSA soon in Richland. search Bargain4LessUSA: 528 W. Clark St., Pasco; 509-531-4998; @Bargain4lessusa_509 and @Bargain4lessusa Northwest. LABCALL, From page A42 Charlette’s going to be there at 8 a.m., take your blood and drop it off at the lab – you can’t beat it.” White also has made use of LabCall services for his own parents. “Both my mom and dad were going through a combination of hospital and home care. Dad passed away in February, but before that (Charlette) was around to help. Mom was (flown) out the same day Dad passed away, and we’ve been fighting to keep Mom healthy. It’s so hard with care homes; there are delays with getting labs, where in the hospital you can get labs immediately,” White said. LabCall has filled that gap. He said it’s not just for homebound seniors either. “I’ve had some people who say, ‘I’m going to do that, too. I hate going to the lab.’ So, it’s healthy people starting to use, too.” White appreciates Glines’ experience. “There are some people who pull blood and it’s scary, and others, like Charlette, you don’t even realize did it,” he said. She must be doing something right. “Business is starting to pick up,” Glines said. “My goal is to get a car and have someone in each city eventually.” search LabCall Mobile Phlebotomy Services: 509-567-5873;

NETWORKING uDONATIONS • Soroptimist International of Three Rivers donated more than 60 diaper boxes valued at $3,000 to four local organizations that support Mid-Columbia women in need. • More than 480 employees at Gesa Credit Union dedicated more than 2,400 hours across the state to volunteer work on Oct. 9. For its second annual Day of Service, Gesa closed its 28 branches to allow team members to spend the day volunteering. More than 30 organizations across the state benefited from this volunteer work, including Second Harvest, Service Peace Warriors, Benton Franklin Humane Society, Boys & Girls Clubs of Benton and Franklin Counties, Grace Kitchen, Richland Parks & Recreation, Financial Reality Fair hosted at New Horizons High School, Kennewick Demonstration Garden and Safe Harbor’s My Friends Place. • Benton Franklin Fair donated $12,550 to cancer prevention efforts as part of its Tough Enough to Wear Pink program. The funds will be shared among the Tri-Cities Cancer Center Foundation, the Prosser Memorial Hospital Foundation and Grace Clinic to be used for a variety of prevention and treatment programs. Each year, fair and rodeo attendees are asked to wear pink on Thursday during the fair, and fundraisers are held during the off season. The fair has donated more than $212,000 over the past 15 years to help uninsured community members in the fight against breast cancer. As a result, more than 2,000

TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 people have received free mammograms, cancer screenings, follow-up care and other forms of assistance. Wrangler, Trios Health, Lourdes Health, the Tri-Cities Cancer Foundation, Prosser Memorial Hospital, Rabo AgriFinance and Washington Trust Bank are sponsors of the program. • Washington State University TriCities has received a $150,000 donation from Bechtel National Inc. for its tutoring center and Learning Assistants program, along with $10,000 in scholarships to assist students pursuing a technical degree. The Learning Assistants program is an initiative first piloted by the WSU system in fall 2021 and involves hiring students to act as embedded learning assistants. The assistants attend the class, hold office hours for peer tutoring and take a leadership course to provide teaching skills. The donation secures naming rights for the tutoring center — which is in the Consolidated Information Center on the Richland campus — for five years. • In celebration of International Credit Union Day, Columbia Industries hosted a hygiene drive with support from Gesa Credit Union, HAPO Community Credit Union, Numerica Credit Union, STCU and Tri-CU. Two hundred women’s and 200 men’s hygiene kits and 200 winter preparedness kits were assembled, along with the donation of new men’s and women’s coats. The beneficiaries of the kits, each filled with essentials such as toothpaste and toothbrushes, soap, deodorant, feminine products, socks, hats and hand warmers, are individuals with disabilities and life barriers who seek

assistance from CI. Each credit union also donated $2,000 to CI, totaling $10,000. • Benton REA, with a $5,000 matching grant from the CoBank Sharing Success program, donated $10,000 to three food banks in the area to help feed local families. Tri-Cities Food Bank received $6,000, Jubilee Ministries’ Food Bank received $2,000, and Sunrise Outreach Food Pantries received $2,000. • The 2023 Hearts Are Wild Gala, supporting Junior Achievement’s programs in Southeastern Washington, raised $30,000. JA students in local schools will benefit from these funds. JA plans to host a bowling classic event in April.

uCERTIFICATION • The American Association of Port Authorities has certified the Port of Benton’s General Counsel David Billetdeaux as a port professional David Billetdeaux manager. Billetdeaux completed this education program in under three years and wrote a capstone paper examining international cluster models and their opportunities for ports. He graduated cum laude from Seattle University School of Law and was a partner at the Cowan Moore Billetdeaux Law Firm, practicing municipal law, estate planning and family law, from 2012-17. Billetdeaux has worked as general counsel for the port since 2017, a role in which he liaises with


outside counsel, works on litigation matters, and researches and develops policies to modernize and develop the port. He also serves as the president of the Benton Franklin County Bar Association, the chair of the Columbia Basin College Foundation and was named a Young Professional in 2021.

uFELLOWSHIP • Washington State University Tri-Cities Professor Bin Yang is one of the newest Fellows of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the highest level of Bin Yang membership in AIChE, a professional society of over 60,000 scientists in 110 countries. Yang has been involved in the society for the past 20 years, including working as a volunteer leader, organizing topical sessions and serving as a session chair. He is one of three WSU scientists to be named Fellows; Yong Wang and Richard Zollars previously received this honor. Yang works to understand and develop advanced biofuels and bioproducts from plant biomass while helping to train the next generation of scientists. He is a member of the university’s Bioproducts, Sciences and Engineering Laboratory and Department of Biological Systems Engineering and was a 2019 Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Energy and Sustainable Use of Natural Resources.




• Sara Matzen is the new human resources director for the city of Pasco. Matzen previously worked at Grant PUD, where she was Sara Matzen responsible for employee and labor relations, compensation for more than 800 employees, and implemented a successful HR business partner model. She holds an MBA and is working to become a certified labor relations professional through the National Public Employers Labor Relations Association. She is also an incoming board member for the Washington state chapter of PELRA. • Columbia Industries has hired Laurie Rivera as its new marketing and communications manager. She has nearly a decade of experience in Laurie Rivera marketing and design, including website development, search engine optimization, social media and paid advertising. She previously worked at Spotted Fox Digital, where she oversaw various creative projects and clients, and with the nonprofit Catholic Charities as

the communications coordinator for the PREPARES program, where she helped create and standardize program materials, facilitated group offerings for clients and assisted in managing and training volunteers. Rivera serves as the District 3 secretary of Soroptimist International of Northwestern Region and held the position of president for Soroptimist International of Pasco-Kennewick in 2020-21. • Caitlyn Uhnak has joined Lourdes Family Medicine as a family medicine provider. Previously, Uhnak worked at Lourdes Urgent Caitlyn Uhnak Care on Road 68. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Boise State University in 2012 and her Doctor of Nursing Practice – Family Nurse Practitioner degree from Washington State University in 2018. • Jesse Rice is the new director of the city of Pasco’s newly rebranded Parks & Recreation Department. He served in the city’s technolJesse Rice ogy department for more than 25 years, including working as the information technology director. In April



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2023, he became interim director of the Administrative & Community Services Department, which has been renamed the Parks & Recreation Department to more accurately reflect the department’s key functions. The department encompasses park management, recreational programming, facilities management, the Tri-Cities Animal Shelter and several downtown Pasco initiatives, such as the Pasco Specialty Kitchen and the farmers market. • Prosser Memorial Health has hired Ashley Kristofzski as a certified nurse midwife at the Prosser Women’s Health Center. Kristofzski received her Ashley Kristofzski bachelor’s degree in human development from the University of California and her Master of Science in Nursing from Pacific Lutheran University and Frontier Nursing University. She also holds several certifications, including basic life support, inpatient obstetrics and advanced fetal monitoring. Kristofzski has worked for PMH as a labor and delivery nurse for a few years. In her new role, she will provide care that covers the lifespan of women, with a special focus on pregnancy and birthing care. • Melony Sandoval is Tri-Cities Chaplaincy’s new Hospice House supervisor. She will coordinate patient care in Chaplaincy’s Melony Sandoval 10-bed facility in Kennewick with patients and their families, providers, nurses, social workers and volunteers. • Tri-Cities Chaplaincy has hired Jean McTigue as the infection prevention and clinical education nurse. McTigue’s industry experiJean McTigue ence is rooted in the Tri-Cities. In her new role, she will support the educational needs of the hospice team and navigate and simplify complex infection prevention standards. • Astria Health has hired Dr. Amer Khouri, a board-certified hematologist/ oncologist to its Prosser health center and the Sunnyside Dr. Amer Khouri hospital cancer center. He has more than 33 years of experience as a hematologist/oncologist and is relocating from Kennewick. He studied at Jordan University of Science and Technology and completed residencies in internal medicine at Jordan University Hospital,

NETWORKING State University of New York and Morristown Memorial Hospital. Dr. Khouri, bilingual in English and Spanish, also has completed an oncology/hematology fellowship at Lankenau Hospital in Pennsylvania.

uPROMOTIONS • STCU has promoted two longtime employees to positions of senior leadership. Brian Scott was promoted to chief risk officer Brian Scott after four years as STCU’s vice president of accounting and finance. He joined STCU in 2003, where he worked in consumer loan origination and underwriting before moving to the accounting department. He received his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Washington State University and a Master of Business Administration from Western Governor’s University. Scott was able to cover costs for the MBA through STCU’s tuition reimbursement program. In his new role, Scott will oversee consumer and commercial underwriting, lending operations, loss mitigation and risk management. Angela Swenseid was promoted to senior vice president of finance and accounting. She worked in various roles in the finance Angela Swenseid and accounting department from 2010-19, when she was promoted to director of finance. She earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance from Eastern Washington University and recently received her MBA from Washington State University, also through STCU’s tuition reimbursement program. • Reg Wainwright is the new plant general manager at Energy Northwest’s Columbia Generating Station. Wainwright has worked for Reg Wainwright Energy Northwest for more than 15 years, starting in reactor and major maintenance and work control, and working his way up to maintenance director. He earned his bachelor’s degree in marine engineering from Massachusetts Maritime Academy and his MBA from Washington State University. He also holds a senior reactor operator certification. In his new role, Wainwright will oversee the operation of the generating station, including oversight of maintenance, operations, chemistry and radiation protection, and planning, scheduling and outage.


• Vanessa Walsh, a Ben Franklin Transit coach operator, recently received the Above and Beyond Award from the state Transit Insurance Pool. Vanessa Walsh She was recognized for performing CPR on a woman who had collapsed at the BFT Three Rivers Transit Center in Kennewick. • U.S. Attorney Vanessa R. Waldref was selected by Washington Women Lawyers as the 2023 recipient of the Justice Mary Fairhurst Passing the Torch Award. This award honors an attorney who mentors women lawyers, makes an impact and supports the organization’s mission of fully and equally including women in the legal profession. Waldref is the first woman to serve as U.S. attorney in the Eastern District of Washington and also mentors students and lawyers as an adjunct professor at the Gonzaga University School of Law. She also opened a new branch office in the Tri-Cities. • Laura Sanchez, director of student services at Washington State University Tri-Cities, was selected as the Latina Educator of the Year (higher education) at the Laura Sanchez Tri-Cities Hispanic Chamber’s annual awards gala. The award recognized Sanchez for her intentional, passionate and inclusive leadership. In her two years at WSU Tri-Cities, Sanchez has helped develop strong relationships both between offices and with off-campus organizations. She played a key role in helping WSU Tri-Cities apply for the Seal of Excelencia, a national designation demonstrating that the university uses research and best practices to serve its Hispanic and Latina student population. Sanchez is a part of the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access Committee, the extended cabinet, provides support for the MOSAIC Center for Student Inclusion, Career Center and the Counseling Wellness office, leads the Cougar Cupboard program and heads the Student Care Network Team. • Washington River Protection Solutions was honored by the Governor’s Committee on Disability Issues & Employment for exemplary work in recruiting, hiring, retaining and advancing workers with disabilities. WRPS won the Large Public (Federal) Employer of the Year Award. About 10% of WRPS employees self-identify as having a disability. The Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce also recently recognized WRPS for hiring military veterans, who currently make up about 14% of the company’s workforce. • The Society of Environmental Journalists has released its 22nd annual Awards for Reporting on the Environment. In the category of Outstanding Explanatory Reporting, Courtney Flatt of Kennewick received second honorable mention for her story “Mysteries of the Deep” for

TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 Northwest News Network. Flatt spent two weeks on a NOAA research vessel, where scientists were collecting samples along the Northern California Current ecosystem. The judges’ comments note that “she told compelling narratives about how sea creatures from whales to tiny phytoplankton can inform climate change.” • Richland Fire and Emergency Services recognized Kadlec Regional Medical Center as a Heart Safe Campus. A Heart Safe Campus goes above and beyond in its efforts to ensure the safety and well-being of all who enter. At Kadlec, clinical staff are medically trained and 90% of the nonclinical staff on the main campus have been trained in hands-only CPR. • Four members of the Washington State University Tri-Cities programming club Coding Cougs won first place at DubHacks, a collegiate hackathon event at the University of Washington campus. The team, “RealmDialer,” consisted of computer science students Christian Penick, James Thomas Brittain, Dietrich Zacher and Danyil Kovalchuk, who competed against 741 individuals and 177 projects over the course of the two-day event. The teams had 28 hours to brainstorm and program a project of their choosing under the categories of disruption, synergy, vitality and T-Mobile. “RealmDialer,” working in the T-Mobile track, created an in-game item for Minecraft that allows players to make phone calls from within the game. The team hopes to further the project by developing a way to accept calls, create a currency to fund calls and connect through in-game video calls. Twenty-nine students from WSU Tri-Cities competed at the event. • The U.S. Department of Energy recognized the Office of River Protection at the Hanford site with a High Performance Sustainable Building Award for its new workshop, completed last year. The 27,000-square-foot Muli-Craft Maintenance Facility replaces multiple smaller facilities and improves efficiency by incorporating craft spaces under one roof. As many as 100 people, including electricians, carpenters, tool crib attendants, painters and insulators, pipefitters and millwrights, and instrument technicians could be working in the facility throughout any given day. The building features repurposed excess equipment from contractor Hanford Mission Integration Solutions and has taken other environmental considerations into account. • Pasco School District’s Board of Directors received the 2023 Board of Distinction Award for the seventh year from the Washington State School Directors’ Association. This award recognizes the board’s high standards of leadership in education, commitment to the success and well-being of students, and efforts to foster a culture of excellence. The award will be presented at the state directors’ Nov. 16 conference in Spokane. The school board includes Amy Phillips, president; Amanda Brown, vice president; John Kennedy; Rosa Torres; and Vincent Guerrero. • Washington State University Tri-Cities researchers have won a 2023 EPA Green Chemistry Challenge Award for a technology that converts terpenes, a waste product released during wood products manufacturing, into valuable chemicals. Joshua Heyne, director of the Washington State University Tri-Cities Bioproducts, Sciences

and Engineering Laboratory and co-director of the WSU-Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Bioproducts Institute, and his colleague Harrison (Zhibin) Yang are co-recipients of the award, along with Kim Tutin, founder and chief executive officer of Captis Aire LLC. • HAPO Community Credit Union has received a Juntos Avanzamos designation for its commitment to serving all members of the community, promoting financial literacy, expanding access to credit and improving opportunities for every individual. The designation also represents HAPO’s dedication to bridging financial gaps and barriers through inclusive financial solutions. HAPO’s more than 120 certified financial coaches play a particularly essential role in delivering the tools and support needed to foster financial independence. HAPO said the designation allows it to further enhance outreach efforts and tailor products and services to better serve the Hispanic and immigrant communities, as well as others living in underserved areas. • The Professional Grounds Management Society (PGMS) recognized Richland School District’s landscape services team with an honor award for exceptional grounds maintenance. The award was given in the School Grounds (K-12, Technical School, Community Colleges) category of the PGMS 2023 Green Star Awards competition. The awards celebrate grounds staff who meet the highest standards in landscape management and practices. The district previously received a Green Star Honor Award in 2021 for the maintenance of Fran Rish Stadium’s field. The district’s 16-member team, led by Landscape Services Manager Chris Hall, maintains the grounds and fields at 20 schools and several support facilities. Nine of the members are certified grounds technicians, a national certification through PGMS. • Visit Tri-Cities recognized two companies with awards during its 54th annual meeting. The 2023 Kris Watkins Tourism Champion of the Year award, sponsored by Washington River Protection Solutions,

went to the Tri-Cities Airport for its service to the Tri-Cities through renovations, collaborations and the promotion of local arts and sports. The airport has returned to pre-Covid passenger numbers, attracting American Airlines, Alaska Airlines and a second airport hotel. Over the next 10-15 years, $110 million will be invested in future terminal projects. The 2023 Excellence in Service award, sponsored by Battelle, was presented to Oatis Outdoor Adventure Rentals for providing exemplary customer service and creating a memorable visitor experience. Owners Tommie and Ester Oatis received a $500 gift card. The business was one of 239 nominees recognized by the community for exceptional hospitality. • Enterprise Middle School Psychologist Alexis Romero was recognized by the Washington State Association of School Psychologists as the Alexis Romero 2023 recipient of the first ever Best Practices Award for Early Career Professional Practices. It is given to a professional in their first three years of practice; this is Romero’s first year as a school psychologist. She was nominated by 12 team members at Enterprise for her “what’s best for students” mentality, ability to prioritize equitable access for all and advocacy for students and families. • The Port of Kennewick and its partners in the Clover Island restoration and revitalization project are among the winners of this year’s Governor’s Smart Communities Awards, administered by the state Department of Commerce. The awards recognize local governments for planning efforts that enrich their communities in the areas of job growth, economic development, housing affordability, homelessness, parks and recreation, transportation and subarea development.

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REAL ESTATE & CONSTRUCTION Pasco teens gain construction skills, confidence as they build new home

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Regional Washington’s Lottery office moving to Kennewick

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November 2023 Volume 22 | Issue 11 | B1

Want your own island? Here’s your chance By Sara Schilling

It’s mostly trees, plus a bit of beachhead. There’s no access road, so you’ll need a kayak or possibly hip waders. But if you’ve got a spirit of adventure and a yearning for a natural area to call your own, you could be the owner of the 13-acre Fox Island north of the Van Giesen bridge. The property is for sale through Century 21 Tri-Cities. “It’s a very beautiful island. It’s like a little natural oasis in the middle of these two cities (Richland and West Richland),” said Dakota Ide, a real estate broker for Century 21, who’s handling the listing. The property doesn’t have any buildings on it, and it carries a flood plain zone designation. That means its uses are somewhat limited, but agriculture, private stables, parks, playgrounds, golf courses and a wildlife refuge are among the possibilities. The listing price is $399,000.

Courtesy Century 21 Tri-Cities A 13-acre island in Richland, north of the Van Giesen Street bridge, is listed for $399,000. The property is undeveloped and potential uses include agriculture, private stables, parks, playgrounds, golf courses and a wildlife refuge.

The property’s current owner, George Fox, lives in Ohio and is looking to liquidate some assets, Ide said. Ide doesn’t know much about Fox, but property re-

cords list him and Beverly J. Fox as the island’s owners since 1959. George Fox served in the U.S. Air Force in the early ’50s and then moved to

Richland, where he spent nine years working for General Electric as an industrial engineer, reactor supervisor and computer manager, according to his LinkedIn profile. General Electric took over operation of the Hanford site from Dupont in the late 1940s and oversaw a period of expansion. After Fox moved on from Hanford in 1966, he worked in the Middle East and Europe before ending up in Ohio, his LinkedIn profile said. Ide said the island property has been listed since July, and it’s been fun to take in the reaction to an entire island listed for sale in the Tri-Cities – something that’s almost unheard of. “It’s unique, it’s exciting. (Selling an island) is something people hardly ever get to do,” he said. “When people hear about it, they’re like, ‘There’s an island being sold?’ It’s fun to hear what they’d do with it.” While there are plenty of possibilities, Ide sees it as an idyllic place to get away. “It’s a nice little spot to hide away in,” he said. “It would be a fun place to enjoy.”

Tri-Cities housing authorities join forces By Sara Schilling

The saying goes, “There’s strength in numbers,” and two housing agencies serving low income, disabled and senior clients in the Tri-Cities area are counting on that to be true by creating a new consortium. The Benton Franklin Housing Consortium officially formed on Oct. 17, when the chairmen of the boards of the Kennewick Housing Authority and the Housing Authority of the City of Pasco and Franklin County signed off on a consortium agreement. The two agencies will remain separate, but they’ll work more closely together, align their practices, and be able to join forces to obtain grants. “We’re excited about where this may lead,” said Matt Truman, executive director of the Pasco and Franklin County housing authority, who’ll hold the same position for the new consortium. He used an analogy to explain the idea behind the arrangement: One Clydesdale horse can pull 8,000 pounds on its own, he said, but two can pull 24,000 pounds

when working together. “I’m hoping that’s the same thing with our agencies,” Truman said. “We each pull a tremendous amount of weight, and we each do a lot of good in the community. But I’m hoping that with this consortium, we can pull a lot more weight and serve many more throughout the community.” Both agencies have about 20 staff members, who’ll remain employees of their respective agencies. Truman also will remain an employee of the Housing Authority of the City of Pasco and Franklin County, while being contracted to work with the Kennewick Housing Authority. The Kennewick agency’s current executive director, Lona Hammer, is set to retire in February. Hammer said the consortium has been in the works for some time, drawing support from the two agencies’ governing boards and city and county governments. She expects it to be a money saver, noting that, “Matt and I go to a number of the same meetings, do a number of the same tasks. One director can do that with no increase in time. He can represent our

Photo by Sara Schilling Leaders of the Kennewick Housing Authority and the Housing Authority of the City of Pasco and Franklin County celebrate the new Benton Franklin Housing Consortium. From left, Lona Hammer, Colin Bates, Brian Griffith and Matt Truman.

(region) and be the face of it.” And standing together as a consortium representing the entire Tri-Cities area, rather than the two smaller Kennewick and Pasco/Franklin County areas,

will mean greater leverage when seeking funding, she said.

“It paints a bigger picture and a broaduHOUSING AUTHORITY, Page B2




Richland woman earns scholarship to pursue degree in project management By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

A Richland woman plans to use a scholarship award to pursue a bachelor’s degree in project management so she can one day lead her father’s construction business. Breann Briggs of Richland received $5,000 from the Building Industry Association of Washington (BIAW) and the Washington Home Builders Foundation to earn a project management bachelor of applied science degree. Briggs has worked for her family’s construction company, A & R Feser Inc., since graduating from Columbia Basin College with an associate degree

in 2012. She is a graduate of Kamiakin High School in Kennewick. Briggs’ grandparents started A & R in 1966, and her father Breann Briggs took over in 2008. Her father plans to retire in the coming years and to pass the company along to Briggs and her brother. This encouraged her to further her education and work toward a bachelor’s degree in project management.

“A lifetime working in construction as a female has been about constantly having to prove myself more than others in the industry,” she said. “This scholarship means more than just help toward getting a degree. It means showing my daughter how important it is to push on despite the doubts of others, and that women can do anything men can do in school and the workplace.” BIAW and the Washington Home Builders Foundation aim to nurture the future workforce by investing nearly $80,000 in scholarships and grants to 16 students and 13 construction trades programs across the state in 2023. “The residential building industry

needs 723,000 new construction workers each year to meet our nation’s current demand,” said BIAW President Gary Wray. “Investing in our future workforce is crucial, and we are so proud of these students and programs for stepping up to fill such an important need.” The Washington Home Builders Foundation was founded in 2012 by BIAW as a way to address educational and workforce needs within the building industry through charitable activities. Donations may be eligible for charitable contribution tax deductions. Go to:

uBUSINESS BRIEF Pasco greenhouse on track to open in early 2024

Local Bounti’s 3-acre greenhouse in Pasco is complete, and overhead and underground infrastructure work is underway. The company said in its quarterly report that the facility at 950 S. Elm Ave. will help bolster the company’s distribution capabilities in the Pacific Northwest and is expected to begin operations early in the first quarter 2024. Local Bounti, which focuses on vertical and greenhouse-growing technology, plans to open its Mount Pleasant, Texas, greenhouse later this year. “With the additional capacity from (the Pasco and Texas) facilities and the improved service levels it will provide for our customers, we expect to begin delivering an acceleration in growth in the coming quarters,” said Anna Fabrega, chief executive officer of Local Bounti. HOUSING AUTHORITY, From page B1 er picture. I do think we may be more competitive in state and federal (funding) rounds because we’re representing not just the city of Kennewick or the city of Pasco, but the needs of the whole area,” Hammer told the Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business. The two agencies are currently providing housing help to about 2,200 people through their various programs. They already work together to some degree, but through the consortium they’ll use the same forms, procedures, practices and so on, Truman said. They’ll keep their own governing boards. Truman said the move to a consortium model isn’t unusual. “You see a lot of this going on around the country,” especially as workers retire, Truman said. “We’re being asked to do more with less. This is a way we can do more with less.” Search Kennewick Housing Authority: Search Housing Authority of the City of Pasco and Franklin County:




Pasco teens gain construction skills, confidence as they build new home By Sara Schilling

A few months from now, when the 1,805-square-foot home off Corinth Drive in Pasco is finished, Damian Corona has an idea how he’ll feel. “I’ll feel accomplished,” he said. That’s because the 17-year-old senior at Chiawana High School will have helped build the home from the ground up through Pasco School District’s Vocational Building Program. Damian is one of 45 students enrolled in the district’s Construction Trades class, which draws students from multiple schools. Students in the class spend hours at the construction site each week, gaining hands-on experience as they earn high school credit. Agriculture science, floriculture, and metals and welding technology students also are contributing to the home, which as of mid-October was two weeks ahead of schedule. It’ll go on the market when completed and will be the 23rd home built through the program. John Marshall, teacher of the Construction Trades class, said students are gaining confidence along with construction skills. It’s rewarding to work with

Photo by Sara Schilling Pasco School District officials and students break ground at the site of the 23rd Team Pasco House under construction through the district’s Vocational Building Program.

them, he said. “The Pasco High School kids come in the morning for two hours and then the Chiawana kids come in the afternoon for two hours, so they pick up where each other left off,” he said.

While they can’t tackle some of the work, including electrical, plumbing, heating, ventilating and air conditioning – that’s left to professional subcontractors – the students “help with most other aspects of (construction),” Marshall said.

That means they do siding, framing, interior trim, flooring minus carpet and more. At the end of the day, “they get a great sense of self and accomplishment. They love it,” Marshall said. Alex Tolentino, 18, a senior at Chiawana High, said he enrolled in the Construction Trades class to learn more about the industry. Both he and Damian, the fellow Chiawana senior, are interested in careers related to the construction field. “I hope this helps me in the future,” Alex said. They both said they’re gaining important skills, including the kind that go beyond wielding a hammer. “We’re learning leadership, teamwork and cooperation,” Damian said. Alex added that, “It takes more than one person to build a floor, frame a wall. It takes teamwork.” While they’re having fun building the home, they are looking forward to the finished product. “It’s kind of (wild) to think that some teenagers built a house,” Alex said. “This is not something you’d think you’d do. To actually accomplish it is great.” Damian agreed. “It feels nice to work on something like this,” he said. “Something special.”

Prosser Memorial Hospital hits construction milestone By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

Prosser Memorial Health’s $112 million hospital complex recently celebrated a construction milestone. The last structural beam, signed by employees and donors, was raised on Oct. 26. Bouten Construction of Richland is the general contractor. The new hospital will replace an aging facility at 723 Memorial St. Built in 1947, the existing hospital is not fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and it sits atop a hillside boxed in by residential neighborhoods so it has no room to grow. PMH officials say the new hospital will allow PMH to expand and add new service lines and providers to better serve the needs of the community. The new complex is expected to open its doors in 2025. It originally was pro-

jected to open in 2024. PMH bought 33 acres for $1.7 million north of Interstate 82 for the new hospital in 2017. The site is across the interstate from the Prosser rest area and about 3 miles from the existing hospital. PMH plans to sell the existing hospital grounds and facility, or raze it and return it to a residentially zoned area. An $80.5 million U.S. Department of Agriculture loan will pay for most of the project, with PMH kicking in about 20% of the total cost and using $3 million through a capital campaign. Hospital officials aren’t asking voters for a levy or bond. The estimated cost for the project in early 2022 was $78 million. Prosser Memorial Health is owned and operated by Prosser Public Hospital District, a municipal corporation. Go to: new-hospital-project.

1304 E. Hillsboro St., Pasco, WA (509) 545-8420 •

Courtesy PMH An 88,000-square-foot Prosser Memorial Hospital and 14,000-square-foot medical office building will be built on 33 acres on North Gap Road north of the Interstate 82 rest area in Prosser.




Port of Pasco, Tri-Cities Airport to host AIM Center open house By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

A 460-acre industrial area catering to businesses that support aviation and aerospace is proposed at the Tri-Cities Airport in Pasco, and an open house Nov. 15 will give the public a chance to learn more. The industrial center, called the Aerospace Innovation and Manufacturing (AIM) Center, is a project of the Port of Pasco, which operates the airport. The open house will run from 5-8 p.m. at McGee Elementary School, 4601 Horizon Drive, Pasco. People are invited to stop by at their convenience. “We want to be very intentional about this project,” said Randy Hayden, executive director of the Port of Pasco, in a statement. “The state has set an ambi-

tious goal to increase manufacturing jobs across Washington, and right now we have an opportunity to work with the state and build an industriRandy Hayden al center that will attract steady, family-wage jobs in one of the state’s fastest-growing industry sectors.” The port also is taking public comments at through Nov. 24. The AIM Center is planned for land within the existing Tri-Cities Airport boundary, next to the runway system. Full buildout would take about 20 years

and cost an estimated $215 million. Two phases are envisioned, with the first encompassing about 300 acres west of Runway 12. The second phase would include the remaining 160 acres. The port unveiled an AIM Center master plan this past June, after obtaining a state grant to pay for preliminary engineering and site investigation to confirm the land would be suitable. The AIM Center fits with the state’s goal of creating 300,000 new manufacturing jobs in Washington over 10 years. Port of Pasco hopes that proximity to the airport will attract companies doing research and science and technology work in the aviation and aerospace fields. “These companies could manufacture

systems such as electric and hydrogenpowered aircraft, vertical take-off and landing aircraft, autonomous flight systems, artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing or other technology,” the statement said. Improvements to roads near the site, plus power and sewer system enhancements, will be needed. Those kinds of impacts will be studied as the project moves forward, the statement said. “We recognize that this is all very preliminary, and we still have a lot of work to do. But we want to be sure we gather community ideas and concerns early enough in the process that we can consider and address or mitigate issues in the design and engineering of the project,” Hayden said.

New Yakima dental school to have Tri-Cities connection By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences is set to open a new school of dental medicine in 2025. And the Yakima-based dental school – which will be the second in the state – will have a Tri-Cities connection. Students enrolled in the program will spend time in immersive training at one of three federally qualified health centers throughout Washington, one of

which is the Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic in Kennewick. The other two are in Yakima and Tacoma. Delta Dental of Washington is a major supporter of PNWU’s School of Dental Medicine, providing $12 million in grant funding. The school also received $5 million in state funding and support from Washington State Dental Association Foundation, Pierce County, foundations and individual donors. The nonprofit PNWU was established

in 2005 and has the mission of educating and training health care professionals, “emphasizing service among rural and medically underserved communities throughout the Northwest.” The dental program will focus on increasing equitable access to dental care. Nationwide, only 14% of dentists practice in rural areas, where 20% of the U.S. population resides, according to a news release announcing Delta Dental’s donation to the dental school.

The release cited a 2022 article in the American Medical Association Journal of Ethics. The dental school will be housed in a new 30,000-square-foot classroom and workspace building, to be named Delta Dental Equity Hall. Officials marked the start of construction at a recent groundbreaking. “The school of dental medicine would not be a reality without the support and generosity of Delta Dental of Washington,” said Dr. Fotinos Panagakos, the school’s dean, in the release. “Delta Dental Equity Hall will provide a state-of-the-art academic space for our program to train the next generation of primary care dentists focused on delivering care to the underserved in Washington, bringing oral health equity to those in need,” he added. A total of 36 students will be admitted each year. After a year of training on campus, students will have three years of full-time training at one of the three health centers. The school will be the first in the country to offer that. Delta Dental of Washington has invested nearly $25 million to help bolster the dental workforce, including $2 million to Neighborcare Health Dental Education Clinic at Pacific Tower and $1.6 million to Providence Spokane for a dental residency program. “Most dental disease is preventable, but you can’t prevent oral health issues if you don’t have access to care,” said Mark Mitchke, president and chief executive officer of Delta Dental of Washington, in the release. “As a mission-driven organization, Delta Dental of Washington is committed to growing the dental workforce particularly within communities of color and extending access to care for rural and underserved communities where we can make the biggest impact on improving our state’s oral health.”



Wallula’s intermodal ramp set to open in January By Sara Schilling

A long-planned intermodal ramp in Wallula is expected to open early next year. The newly formed company that’s reviving the project has signed a lease and purchase agreement with Union Pacific for the property on Railex Road off Highway 12, east of the Tri-Cities. The property includes the 210,000-squarefoot former Cold Connect warehouse and about 64 acres of land. Ted Prince, founder and chief executive officer of Tri-Cities Intermodal, the company behind the project’s revival, declined to detail the terms of the deal. But “let’s just say that we wouldn’t undertake (the lease) if we weren’t planning to buy it,” Prince said, noting that construction is expected to wrap up by the end of the year and the facility should be ready to open in January. “It is fantastic to have a line of sight to actual operation within three to four months,” Prince added in a statement, saying that his company was fortunate to find “an investor with foresight” and have Union Pacific’s support. The investor is PNW Capital, led by James Delaney. In the statement, Delaney called the intermodal ramp “a superb concept, bolstered by a highly capable team and situated within an exceptionally favorable business environment.” “We are very excited to include TriCities within our distinguished portfolio,” he added. Kari Kirchhoefer, senior vice presi-

uBUSINESS BRIEFS Voters pick their Parade of Homes favorites

Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities has announced its People’s Choice winners for the 2023 Parade of Homes event, held in September. Prodigy Homes won in category 1 (under 3,500 square feet), and 47 North Custom Homes won in category 2 (over 3,500 square feet). The HBA noted it was the closest vote in Parade history with nine votes separating the top two candidates in category 1, and three votes separating in category 2. Those who visited all of the homes in a category could vote. The People’s Choice awards were announced Oct. 18 during HBA’s general membership meeting in Richland.

Idaho Central Credit Union buys land in Richland

Idaho Central Credit Union recently bought 1.43 acres of commercial/industrial land at 3180 Duportail St. in

dent of premium, marketing and sales for Union Pacific, said in the statement that the railroad is “excited about TriCities Intermodal advancing an initiative that will remove thousands of trucks from the highway. This is a region that continues to grow in logistical importance, and we look forward to supporting its growth with safe, reliable service.” The intermodal ramp won’t be a freeway-style ramp but instead a facility where freight is moved between trains and trucks. Initially, it will open up routes to Seattle and Tacoma docks and as far east as Chicago and beyond, Prince has said. Further expansion also is possible, he has said. The ramp has been in the works for some time, with the Kansas-based Tiger Cool Express moving it closer to the finish line earlier this year. That company even invited media and stakeholders to the site this past spring to get a peek at plans and operations. But then the company shut down in June. Prince was a co-founder of Tiger Cool Express. However, the new company is separate and the lease and purchase deal with Union Pacific is unconnected, the statement said. Along with Prince, TriCities Intermodal management includes Justin Roberts, vice president of operations; Tom Smith, vice president of sales and marketing; Zachary Ybarra, vice president of planning, control and information systems; and Cameron Kelley, Liam Marsh, Felicia Moore and Keith Woetzel.

Richland. The credit union paid $1.06 million for the property. Credit union officials said they don’t have any plans to share about developing the property. “We love Washington and we’re looking for ways to serve our members in the Tri-Cities area, but we don’t have any additional details or timelines to share at this time,” said Laura Smith, vice president of Community Development for Idaho, in an email to the Journal of Business. The credit union bought 1.5 acres at 3720 S. Zintel Way in Kennewick earlier this year for $784,000. Idaho Central was organized as a state-chartered credit union in 1940 and has grown to have over $10 billion in assets. It serves over 580,000 members throughout Idaho, Washington and eastern Oregon. It has two branches in Spokane. In September, it announced a partnership with Upstart (NASDAQ: UPST), an artificial intelligence lending marketplace founded in 2012 to provide personal loans to more people.


Regional Washington’s Lottery office moving to Kennewick By Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business

Washington’s Lottery is moving its Central Washington Regional Office to the Tri-Cities. The current office on South Fifth Avenue in Yakima is closing on Nov. 16, and the new office at 8551 W. Gage Blvd., Suite K, in Kennewick is set to open on Nov. 20. The 2,370-square-foot office in the same building as Buffalo Wild Wings, Paw’s Natural Pet Emporium and several other businesses not far from Costco and the Columbia Center mall. Washington’s Lottery has a five-year lease. “We’re really excited to have a larger, official presence in the Tri-Cities with our new regional office,” said Joshua Johnston, director of Washington’s Lottery, in a statement. “It’s an area where player demand is strong, retailer support is high, and where we see the opportunity to match the growth of the surrounding population with our own. We see this as a win-win for the Tri-Cities community and Washington’s Lottery,” Johnston said. The regional office was in Yakima for more than 40 years, since 1982. Several factors went into the decision to relocate, the statement said. “Our mission is to maximize contributions to our

beneficiaries, which include the Washington Student Achievement Council and the Early Childhood Education & Assistance Program, among others,” Johnston said in the statement, which noted the Yakima lease was expiring. “Doing so means being where Lottery support is sound, including having an active, engaged player base to support the new location.” All seven employees at the Yakima office will transfer to the new Kennewick office, and the agency will pay similar lease costs in Kennewick, the statement said. Players will be able to claim prizes at the new location, buy tickets through a vending machine that accepts cash and debit cards, and learn more about how Washington’s Lottery works. “Office moves are never easy for any organization,” Johnston said in the statement. “We realize that there are players who will be excited about this decision and others who won’t be. Ultimately, though, we hope all our players will understand that this is what is best for Washington’s Lottery as an organization and ultimately for our beneficiaries.” Other regional offices are in Everett, Federal Way, Olympia, Spokane and Vancouver. The Kennewick office will be open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.




Planning underway for new BPA substation, park improvements, apartments Compiled by Rachel Visick

Documents filed under Washington’s environmental review process reveal a list of projects in the works for the MidColumbia. The State Environmental Policy Act, or SEPA, often provides the first look at the mixed-use projects, mini storage facilities, apartments, industrial expansions, subdivisions and more that are working their way through the various planning departments of Benton, Franklin and Walla Walla counties. Here’s a look at projects that appeared in the SEPA register in the past month.

Jackrabbit Lane subdivision Richland Permit Surveying Inc. submitted plans to divide 20 acres of commercial property at 225 Jackrabbit Lane into four lots and build a private road with utilities to service each lot. Webber Canyon substation BPA Bonneville Power Administration has proposed building a new Webber Canyon substation next to the existing Ashe-Marion 500-kV line. It would connect to BPA’s existing Badger Canyon Substation with a new 18-mile-long 115-kV transmission line. In the existing transmission corridor near Badger Canyon Substation, the new line would be built with steel

monopoles, and wood poles would be used elsewhere. Fiber-optic cable also would be added to the new line, as well as existing transmission lines in the area, to improve operational communication and control. To incorporate the new transmission line, Badger Canyon Substation would be reconfigured and upgraded. Proposed locations run near West Clearwater Avenue in Kennewick, along East Reata Road, East Badger Road and East Badger Canyon Road, then south of County Well Road. The goals of this project are to improve long-term electric reliability, improve short-term operational flexibility and address system maintenance needs to support the Tri-Cities area’s increasing demand for power.

Dowd Road grading Benton County Teton West of Washington submitted plans to build an onion storage building with a connected fan house at 77802 S. Dowd Road, Prosser. Auto Zone warehouse Kennewick JUB Engineers submitted plans to build an 18,850-square-foot warehouse addition to an existing 15,945-squarefoot building at 1220 W. Fourth Ave. A driveway loop around and additional parking spaces will be included in the project. The property is zoned commercial, community.



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Agricultural air strip Benton County Lenard Beierle submitted plans to build an air strip for a commercial cropdusting operation north of Paterson. The airstrip will include a 2,800-by-40-foot compacted dirt runway with a 120-by100-foot loading area. Sherman Street development Kennewick PBS Engineering and Environmental has submitted plans to fill and excavate 96,983 cubic yards of material on 18.87 acres at 2716 S. Sherman St. The site is being prepared for future development and is zoned residential, low. Plymouth grading Benton County Farmland Reserve submitted plans to grade about 150,000 cubic yards at 127227 E. 1683 PR SE, Plymouth. Three potato storage buildings, each 180-by-350 feet, will be constructed. Rezone Kennewick Knutzen Engineering submitted plans to rezone 10601 and 10519 Ridgeline Drive from business park to community commercial. The rezone will cover 4.38 acres and 1.5 acres respectively. Canal siphon removal Kennewick Irrigation District Daniel Tissell submitted plans to remove two inverted siphons at Main Canal mileposts 11 and 12. After removal, grading will occur to install an open channel canal within the disturbed area of the removed siphon. A concrete access ramp will be installed, providing vehicular access for maintenance, safe stormwater discharge and an exit point for animals trapped in the canal. The project will take place along the section of Main Canal Division II between 7,900 feet east of where Webber Canyon Road crosses the canal and 5,100 feet west of where 506 PR SE crosses the canal. Two Rivers Park boardwalk Benton County The Benton County Parks Department has submitted plans for improvements at Two Rivers Park, including the construction of a 440-foot elevated boardwalk associated with the Two Rivers Park Nature Trail. Olson Brothers Subdivision Benton City Hayward Uskoski & Associates Inc. has submitted plans to divide three lots totaling 40.32 acres into 210 new lots for single-family residential development. The project includes multiple streets and utilities including sewer, water, stormwater management and dry utilities. The property is north of Ki-Be Road, Horne Road and Highland Road and is zoned R-3 high density residential. Surf Thru car wash Kennewick SynTier Engineering Inc. has submitted plans to build a 5,800-square-foot car wash with associated site improvements, including driveways, parking,

driveway improvements and utilities, at 610 S. Ely St.

Ace Hardware store Connell Stan’s Merry Mart Inc. has submitted plans to build a 14,172-square-foot Ace Hardware store to include outdoor sales areas, covered and uncovered storage, a parking lot with 38 stalls and stormwater facilities. The 1.09-acre site is located off East Hawthorne Street east of the Dollar General store. Medical waste permit Pasco Chad Plata, on behalf of Trilogy MedWaste West LLC, has submitted a special permit application to collect medical waste and transport it to a trailer at 1620 E. Salt Lake St., Suite B. A rented warehouse on site will be used as office space and to store clean, empty waste containers. Sealed waste-filled containers will be scanned, weighed and transferred to the trailer. Waste-filled containers will not be opened. Barker Heights pump station Pasco Brian Cartwright, on behalf of the city of Pasco, has submitted a special permit application to build an open-air irrigation pump station along the west side of Broadmoor Boulevard, 2,000 feet north of the intersection of Broadmoor Boulevard and Burns Road. Seven vertical pumps will be installed, providing pressure to a high elevation and low elevation pressure zone. Irrigation line adjustment Pasco Ryan Mahaffey with the city of Pasco has submitted plans to reroute and remove or abandon the existing irrigation line that runs from Road 36 through the Port of Pasco property and feeds the municipal golf course. The line will be severed at Road 36 and laid southbound along the shoulder of Road 36, where it will tie into the existing irrigation line at the intersection of Road 36 and Argent. The new line is about 2,000 feet long, while the portion to be removed or abandoned is about 2,300 feet long. Unverferth metal building Pasco Brandon Votaw submitted plans to build a new 14,550-square-foot pre-engineered metal building. Inside, about 13,500 square feet will be used as warehouse space and 1,050 square feet will be used as office space. The project site, on the corner of North Railroad Avenue and East Adams Street, has been graded in the past few years. Oudrhiri Dock replacement Franklin County Harms Engineering has submitted plans to replace the existing dock, ramp and concrete pier at 110 Terrace Drive to meet requirements of the McNary Shorelines Management Plan. A 4-by4-foot concrete pier and 160-squarefoot private dock will be built, piles and grating with at least 50% open area will be installed, and floats will be limited to uSEPA, Page B7

REAL ESTATE & CONSTRUCTION uBUSINESS BRIEFS $7.5 million Center Parkway North extension opens

The long-awaited Center Parkway North Extension, connecting Tapteal Drive with Gage Boulevard, opened in October. The city of Richland and its partners held a ribbon-cutting event to celebrate the completion of the $7.5 million road. The new three-lane roadway includes bike lanes, curbs, gutters and sidewalks on both sides of the street, and a signalized/gated at-grade railroad crossing. The completed project improves connectivity in a key retail section of Richland. The project was completed by Premier Excavation of Pasco and its subcontractors.

Ray’s Golden Lion reopens after series of setbacks

Ray’s Golden Lion has opened under new ownership at 1353 George Washington Way in the Richland Uptown Shopping Center. The owners set up a GoFundMe

SEPA, From page B6 50% of the dock area.

LPR KIA dealership Pasco Paul Knutzen with Knutzen Engineering has submitted plans to build a 30,884-square-foot auto dealership with associated service center, parts department and vehicle display areas. The associated properties south of Interstate 182 and east of Broadmoor Boulevard, along the north side of St. Thomas Drive, will be consolidated, totaling 3.21 acres. Lamb Weston improvements Connell Lamb Weston has submitted plans to demolish three existing storage buildings and replace them with three new storage structure at 811 W. Gum St. The new potato sheds will be 49,112 square feet each, slightly larger than the existing buildings. A new 6,000-square-foot metal storage building will be built at the north end of the site. No change in use or intensity is anticipated. The Plateau at River Ranch Franklin County Aqtera Engineering has submitted plans to divide a 34.09-acre parcel into 26 lots to create a subdivision. The property is zoned Rural Community 1 Zone and has an underlying comprehensive plan land use designation of Rural Shoreline Development. Copp Pit and Bauer Sand Pit WA Department of Ecology Toni Hille has applied for a permit to cover Connell Sand and Gravel Inc.’s stationary operations at Copp Pit and Bauer Sand Pit. The company operates a dry scalp plant, wash plant, sand plant, screening operations, crushing operations and generators at these locations. The operations cover a mixture of sta-


account to ask for help to fix gas leaks and other unforeseen expenses after investing about $450,000 into reopening the Richland restaurant, bar and music venue. “The one thing we never wanted to do or thought we’d have to do – was ask for help,” the owners said. Their campaign raised more than $10,000. The Emerald of Siam, also located in the Uptown, also helped to raise money for Ray’s repairs by holding a silent auction and party on Oct. 13. Contact: 509-371-9500; Facebook, Instagram @RaysGoldenLion.

The shop is run by Tina Pack and her husband, Shawn, who’ve been using shared kitchen space and selling their food at farmers markets, bazaars and pop-up events for years. They make everything from breads to cookies, brownies and more.

Property management group expands into Hermiston

A popular gluten-free bakery and deli is celebrating the opening of its new storefront. Tina’s Tasty Treats opened its doors at 1325 George Washington Way, in the former Lotus Asian Market space at the Uptown Shopping Center in Richland, on Oct. 21. Hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays.

Eagle Crest Property Management (ECPM), a property management company overseeing about 200 units in the Walla Walla and Milton-Freewater, Oregon, area, has expanded into the Hermiston, Oregon, market. Founded in 2016 by Dennis Gisi and Kenneth Butler, who also own and operate four locations of John L. Scott in the Columbia Basin region, including in Pasco, ECPM plans for growth in this new territory. ECPM’s decision to extend its reach into Hermiston stems from a successful foray into the commercial leasing and management sector. “We have thoroughly tested the market with our commercial leasing and management business and were warmly received when we successfully

tionary and portable equipment.

three bedrooms.

Gluten-free bakery opens in Richland Uptown

Sandifur Apartments Pasco Haven Capital LLC has submitted plans for a 44-unit apartment complex. This proposal consists of two-story units that will accommodate two and

Court Street-Road 68 project Pasco The city of Pasco’s Public Works Department submitted plans to build a roundabout at the Court Street and Road 68 intersection as a control mea-


leased an industrial park along Highway 395. Additionally, ECPM manages and leases several office and retail locations in downtown Hermiston, further demonstrating our commitment to the local business community,” Gisi said. ECPM’s services extend beyond commercial properties; the company also manages single- and multifamily residential units in the area, ensuring a comprehensive approach to property management that caters to the diverse needs of both property owners and tenants. Go to:

Kennewick storefront remodel planned

Priscilla E. and Daniel L. Martinez bought a storefront at 3503 W. Clearwater Ave. in Kennewick and plan to improve it. The property sold for $350,000. “The new buyers are planning to do a complete remodel of the storefronts,” said broker Roland Rint of NAI TriCities, which represented the sellers, Anthony J. and Terri Edwards and Charles J. and Carolyn Hooper.

sure. The project includes excavation, embankment construction, paving, sidewalk construction, a pedestrian railing, stormwater collection, conveyance and treatment, a sanitary sewer, a water main, signing, striping, illumination, driveways and landscape work.




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Flex Space Business Centers 2509 & 2513 Logan St., Richland

Theodore Properties LLC will complete construction by year’s end on its new Flex Space Business Centers in the Horn Rapids Industrial Park in Richland. Located at 2509 and 2513 Logan St., the buildings are similar in design to the company’s flex space complex on Taptel Drive in Richland. The project’s owners say they will fill a need for affordable suites as they offer one-year leases. The pre-engineered metal buildings have 15 move-in ready tenant spaces, each complete with an office, restroom, and overhead door in the warehouse space. Each suite is climate controlled. The multi-use flex space can accommodate a range of businesses, from small contractors to retail suites.

The building at 2509 Logan St. is 33,600 square feet, and the other, at 2513 Logan St., is 20,160 square feet. The location offers plenty of parking and includes a gated fenced-in laydown yard. Hummel Construction and Development LLC of Richland is the general contractor. James Hummel and Corey Chandler are key personnel involved in the project. Theodore Properties designed the buildings. DKEI Architectural Services of Richland is the architect. For leasing information, contact Vicki Monteagudo of NAI Commercial Tri-Cities at or call/text 509-405-7044. Go to: flexspacebusinesscenters. com.


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3120 Travel Plaza Way • Pasco CRFMEMW939PJ

(509) 430-7609 •



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Tri-Tech Skills Center Building C 5929 W. Metaline Ave., Kennewick

Tri-Tech Skills Center and the Kennewick School District completed construction of a 9,500-square-foot building offering teaching space for Tri-Tech’s pre-veterinary and preelectrical programs. The project at 5929 W. Metaline Ave. consists of a single-story building with two classrooms, a shop, a lab, an exam room, an office, and a kennel for the veterinary program. Tri-Tech required additional space for students and programs. The building was constructed on districtowned land. The estimated construction cost is $5 million, which includes architect, engineering, furnishings, etc. It was completed in September. Banlin Construction LLC of Kennewick is the general contractor. Casey Lindstrom and Matt Mullin are key personnel involved in the project. Design West Architects of Kennewick designed the building, with Brandon Wilm serving as the key contact. Tri-Tech is one of 11 skills centers in Washington dedicated to offering tuition-free technical and professional training for high school aged students. The Kennewick center operates as a cooperative school of seven local school districts: Kennewick, Pasco, Richland, Finley, Columbia Burbank, Kiona-Benton City and North Franklin. Tri-Tech also serves students from the Prosser School District, online schools and home-school students. Go to:


“Committed to Building Lifetime Customers”

Congratulations! Thank you for the opportunity to provide construction services for Kennewick School District Tri-Tech Building C.

(509) 586-2000

320 W. Columbia Dr. Kennewick, WA Washington • Oregon BANLICL88ICB


(509) 586-0454






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Design/Build Since 1974

Congratulations KSD Tri-Tech Building C!

KNUTZEN IS PROUD TO BE A PART OF THIS PROJECT! Civil • Structural (509) 893-0750

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We are proud to be on the construction team!




PUBLIC RECORD uBANKRUPTCIES Bankruptcies are filed under the following chapter headings: Chapter 7 – Straight Bankruptcy: debtor gives up non-exempt property and debt is discharged. Chapter 11 – Allows companies and individuals to restructure debts to repay them. Chapter 12 – Allows family farmers or fishermen to restructure finances to avoid liquidation for foreclosure. Chapter 13 – Plan is devised by the individual to pay a percentage of debt based on ability to pay. All disposable income must be used to pay debts. Information provided by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Spokane.

CHAPTER 7 Mateo Martinez Roman, P.O. Box 1223, Prosser. Yordanys Aguilar Ramos, P.O. Box 4276, Pasco. Anna Christina Mendoza, 715 Court St., Prosser. Alexandria Catherine Hudgens, 1515 Willow Way, Benton City. Jorge Morales, 3618 El Paso Drive, Pasco. Kristi Mari Goss, 4903 Kennedy Way, Pasco. Taryn Drew Durrant, 207405 E. Finley Road, Kennewick. Teresa Leigh Smith, 1201 W. 13th Ave., #C, Kennewick. Kayla Lynn Ledbetter, 3906 Road 104, Pasco. Juanita Perez, 6405 Chapel Hill Blvd., Pasco. Sundae Elaine Stone, 2697 Jason Loop, Richland. Henry Louis Bell Jr. And Betty Lou Bell, 3324 W. 19th Ave., #113, Kennewick. Matthew David Bartlett and Kaylee Christine Bartlett, 8116 Hudson Drive, Pasco. Anita George, 7903 Zayas Drive, Pasco.

CHAPTER 13 David Lewis Burrill, 114 E. 36th Ave., Kennewick. Jean Waters, 1622 S. Dennis Place, Kennewick.

uTOP PROPERTIES Top property values listed start at $700,000 and have been rounded to the nearest hundred fig-

ure. Property values are public record and can be found by visiting the county assessor’s office.

BENTON COUNTY 702 S. 48th St., West Richland, 1,999-square-foot home on 2.1 acres. Price: $743,100. Buyer: Lance Solper. Seller: Purchasing Fund 2023-1 LLC. 686 Big Sky Drive, Richland, 2,552-square-foot home. Price: $730,000. Buyer: Gregory P. & Lori A. Katterhagen. Seller: Jared Maxson. 3543 Paso Fino St., West Richland, 1.17-acre homesite. Price: $1.8 million. Buyer: Marcelo Crespo Affonso & Milica Vukovic. Seller: TriCity Remodel LLC. 1262 Brentwood Ave., Richland, 2,124-square-foot home. Price: $700,000. Buyer: Christina Utecht & Bryan Crisp. Seller: William Joseph Spann Jr. 3340 E. Mt. Adams View Drive, Richland, 2,676-square-foot home on 2.5 acres. Price: $1.4 million. Buyer: Jonathan R. & Teri Carr. Seller: Geoff P. & Michelle D. Bouchey. 1336 Alla Vista St., Richland, 2,711-square-foot home. Price: $975,000. Buyer: Debra Sue Cannon. Seller: Trustees Robert W. & Cathleen A. Griffith. 5502 Glenbrook Loop, West Richland, 3,430-square-foot home. Price: $910,000. Buyer: Mark & Katrina Ingham. Seller: Michael Hall & Jamie Adams. 4949 Rau Lane, Richland, 2,347-square-foot home on 1.1 acres. Price; $850,000. Buyer: Hayden & Anna Hilty. Seller: Tiffany & Jessus Torres. 5903 W. Lattin Road, West Richland, 2,546-square-foot home on 1.1 acres. Price: $720,000. Buyer: Jessus & Tiffany Torres. Seller: Kevin & Earlein Smith. 9501 W. 10th Ave., Kennewick, an 800-square-foot office, 7400-, 10,200-, 9,900-, 7,650-, 7,650-, 9,300-, 9,000-, 8,100-, 6,900- and 4,600-square foot warehouses on 6.1 acres. Price: $12.5 million. Buyer: NWB Kennewick LLC. Seller: Matson Storage LLC. 6095 Collins Road, West Richland, 3,454-square-foot home on 1.6 acres. Price: $945,000. Buyer: Kevin Douglas & Earlein Smith. Seller: David Leland Lasater.

4101, 4201 and 4401 Leslie Road, Richland, 14.13 acres commercial/ industrial land. Price: $4 million. Buyer: TBM Leslie LLC. Seller: Croskrey Properties LLC. 3180 Eastlake Court, West Richland, 2,122-square-foot home on 1 acre. Price: $825,000. Buyer: Melissa C. & William J. Ruzicka. Seller: Bruce Gordon & Ann M. Carpenter. Undisclosed location, Paterson, 2,520 acres of irrigated ag land, 1,672 acres of rangeland and a 1-acre homesite. Price: $41.5 million. Buyer: US Row Farmland LLC. Seller: SMWE PropCo Buyer LLC. 8479 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite A#110, Kennewick, 6,552-square-foot commercial building. Price: $800,000. Buyer: Mario Martinez. Seller: Kooskooskia Inc. 8479 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite A#120, Kennewick, 0.09 acres of commercial/industrial land. Price: $1.1 million. Buyer: Bays Capital Properties LLC. Seller: Kooskooskia Inc. 733 Snyder St., Richland, 2,920-square-foot home on 1 acre. Price: $779,000. Buyer: Scott Z. Henderson & Lisa Dosher. Seller: Kellen & Sarah Springer. 1580 Manchester St., Richland, 2,955-square-foot home. Price: $840,000. Buyer: Azadeh Farokhi & Aren A. Giske. Seller: Bradley Dewitt. 2131 Legacy Lane, Richland, 3,135-square-foot home. Price: $850,000. Buyer: Sandra Anne Farnum. Seller: David K. & Sarah Ashley Mun. Property at Dale Avenue and 10th Street, Benton City, 8,960-square-foot commercial building on 1.13 acres. Price: $725,000. Buyer: APIF Washington LLC. Seller: Middle Bar C LLC. 102705 E. Nicole Drive, Kennewick, 2,702-square-foot home. Price: $770,000. Buyer: Lucas & Lindsey Collins. Seller: Steven J. & Monica L. Heid. 145 Belmont Blvd., West Richland, 7.19 acres commercial/industrial land. Price: $1.76 million. Buyer: Shaninvestment LLC. Seller: JLW Asset Management LLC. 3205 W. River Ridge PR NW, Benton City, 4,865-square-foot home on 2.23 acres. Price: $850,000. Buyer: Chase William Edwards. Seller: Scott A.,


Jeffrey L. & George E. Wingert.

FRANKLIN COUNTY Property north of Interstate 182 and east of Columbia River Road, 107.1 acres of agricultural resource land. Price: $1.95 million. Buyer: Margaret Jenepher Field. Seller: Henry Walden Field (TR). 4606 W. River Blvd., 3,355-squarefoot home on 1.07 acres. Price: $2.3 million. Buyer: Vicky R. Jones (TR). Seller: Kees & Sheila R. Koster. 6524 Gallatin Road, Pasco, 2,606-square-foot home. Price: $800,000. Buyer: Ketra Evans. Seller: Ross W. & Sandra A. Truitt. 1501 W. Court St., Pasco, 17,415-square-foot commercial building on 1.05 acres. Price: $3.1 million. Buyer: Oregon Street Group LLC. Seller: Court Street Mall LLC. 3720 W. SR 260, Connell, 42,656-square-foot potato storage shed on 4.48 acres. Price: $1.4 million. Buyer: Six D Storages LLC. Seller: Scott R. Knight (et al). 1915 Sun Willows Blvd., Pasco, 6,407-square-foot commercial building. Price: $1.6 million. Buyer: EHD Holdings LLC. Seller: Sun Willows Law Center LLC. Property south of Interstate 182, 2.25 acres undeveloped land. Price: $785,000. Buyer: JDD Investments LLC. Seller: The Fine Arts Museums Foundation Inc. 7110 Kau Trail, Pasco, 2,291-squarefoot home on 1.04 acres. Price: $875,000. Buyer: Vargas Real Estate Inc. Seller: Miles R. Creed. 10119 W. Court St., Pasco, 4,201-square-foot home. Price: $800,000. Buyer: 10119 LLC. Seller: Barbara J. Schultz. 11626 Blackhawk Court, Pasco, 2,930-square-foot home. Price: $1.5 million. Buyer: Todd & Abigail Coleman. Seller: William H. & Kendra S. Moos. 500 E. Vineyard Drive, Pasco, 2,507-square-foot home on 1.13 acres. Price: $785,000. Buyer: Scott C. & Caren C. Jay. Seller: Muzzy Construction LLC. 6861 Columbia River Road, Pasco, 2,234-square-foot home. Price: $1.17 million. Buyer: Ryan & Bethany





Burnham Sec Pasco, 891 E. Foster Wells Road, $100,000 for an industrial building. Contractor: Swinerton Builders. Tidewater Terminal, 671 Tank Farm Road, $14,600 for plumbing. Contractor: Watts Construction.



Pierson. Seller: Gary & Marilyn Eby. 1310 N. Fifth Ave., 5,040-square-foot office building. Price: $1.1 million. Buyer: Franklin County. Seller: Michael J. Davidson.

Victory Baptist Church, 29911 E. Jacobs Road, $10,000 for plumbing, $367,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Gap Mechanical Inc for the plumbing, owner for the commercial remodel.

FRANKLIN COUNTY Oakdell Egg Farms, 560 Birch Road, $973,600 for an accessory building. Contractor: Circle K Enterprises.

Robin Southards, 7501 W. Deschutes Place, $1.75 million for a commercial remodel, $70,000 for heat pump/HVAC, $150,000 for plumbing. Contractor: Chervenell Construction for the commercial remodel, Solstice Heating & Air for the heat pump/HVAC, BNB Mechanical for the plumbing. Avalon Court, 801 N. Tweedt St., Suite B101, $90,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: to be determined. Simon & Ana Samaniego, 3000 W.

Kennewick Ave., $50,000 for commercial demolition. Contractor: owner. Hess Investments LLC, 1141 N. Edison St., Suite C, $57,500 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Schneider Construction. Columbia Mall Partnership, 1321 N. Columbia Center Blvd., $7,500 for mechanical. Contractor: Pacific Mechanical & Electric. Olson Family Group LLC, 8109 W. Grandridge Blvd., Suite 110, $8,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Rivard Construction Services. Phoenix Apartments, 425 S. Olympia St., Building E101, $17,900 for a commercial reroof. Contractor: Royal Roofing Inc. Wallace Properties Kennewick LLC, 2831 W. Kennewick Ave., $42,600 for mechanical. Contractor: to be determined.

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Hess Investments LLC, 1141 N. Edison St., Suite B, $62,500 for a commercial remodel, $5,000 for plumbing. Contractor: Schneider Construction for the commercial remodel and JRT Mechanical Inc. for the plumbing. Phoenix Apartments, 425 S. Olympia St., #F101, $72,000 for a commercial reroof. Contractor: Royal Roofing Inc. Melissa Noel, 7425 W. Clearwater Ave., $5,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Montgomery Investments LLC. Pacific Clinic, 1350 N. Grant St., $13,500 for plumbing. Contractor: Riggle Plumbing Inc. McCardle Trustees Terry Lynn & Suzanne Bee, et al., 8530 W. Gage Blvd., $30,000 for a commercial reroof. Contractor: Silver Bow Roofing. Edgar Guizar, 5205 W. Okanogan Place, $1.4 million for new commercial, $30,000 for plumbing. Contractor: GTC Construction LLC. Brittani Wright, 5331 W. Canal Drive, $47,600 for mechanical, $28,000 for plumbing and $344,100 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Bruce Mechanical Inc. for the mechanical, M Campbell & Company Inc. for the plumbing and Baker Construction & Development Inc. for the commercial remodel. Mendoza Properties LLC, 518 W. Columbia Drive, $30,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: S & K Mountain Construction. Grigsby Properties LLC, 515 N. Neel St., #C102, $25,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Grigsby Properties LLC. Ruby Poland Trustee, 525 W. Grand Ronde Ave., $19,300 for a commercial reroof. Contractor: Columbia Basin Builders. Washington Federal Bank, 5331 W. Canal Drive, $17,000 for demolition. Contractor: Baker Construction & Development Inc. Shelby’s Floral, 6018 W. Clearwater Ave., $600,000 for new commercial, $50,000 for mechanical, $50,000 for plumbing. Contractor: Hummel Construction and Development for the new commercial and mechanical, Riggle Plumbing Inc. for the plumbing. Argo Colonnade LLC, 6501 Crosswind Blvd., Suite E, $98,000 for a commercial remodel, $12,000 for plumbing. Contractor: Kaizen Construction & Development for the commercial remodel, Columbia Basin Plumbing for the plumbing. Zook Homez LLC, 7275 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite A110, $12,000 for plumbing, $13,000 for heat pump/HVAC. Contractor: DDB LLC for the plumbing, Americool Heating & A/C for the heat pump/HVAC. Best Western Plus Kennewick Inn, 4001 W. 27th Ave., $22,320 for plumbing. Contractor: Express 24HR Plumbing & Drain LLC. Costco Wholesale, 8505 W. Gage Blvd., $9,900 for mechanical. Contractor: to be determined.


509-737-8778 |

Star Group Inc., 611 W. Columbia St., $50,000 for tenant improvements. Contractor: to be determined. TSP Pasco LLC, 8925 St. Thomas Drive, $64,800 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Engineered Products. Court Star LLC, 1712 N. Fourth Ave., Suite G-1, $7,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: to be determined.


TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 ST Properties LLC, 1865 N. Commercial Ave., $15,300 for a sign. Contractor: Mustang Sign Group. Star Group Inc., 120 S. Fifth Ave., $25,000 for tenant improvements. Contractor: owner. US West Inc., 707 W. Lewis St., $324,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: 1st Air Mechanical Inc. American Sunset LLC, 2200 W. Shoshone St., $750,000 for a commercial remodel. Contractor: Belfor USA Group Inc. Port of Pasco, 3025 Rickenbacker Drive, $1.4 million for an industrial building. Contractor: LCR Construction LLC. James S. & Sally Ann Lyon, 3305 King Ave., $17,900 for tenant improvements. Contractor: owner. Wheatland Bank, 9715 Sandifur Parkway, $24,000 for mechanical. Contractor: Bales Construction Inc. McDonald’s Real Estate Company, 2202 W. Court St., $75,000 for tenant improvements. Contractor: Associated Construction Inc. Lawrence B Stone Properties #0, 216 S. Sixth Ave., $31,500 for heat pump/ HVAC. Contractor: Apollo Sheet Metal. Mirna Aguayo, 1427 N. Fourth Ave., $129,300 for tenant improvements. Contractor: N/A. McCurley Chevrolet Property LLC, 1325 Autoplex Way, $5.6 million for a commercial addition. Contractor: Mountain States Construction Co. Columbia Basin College, 2815 St. Andrews Loop, $10,600 for heat pump/ HVAC. Contractor: Apollo Sheet Metal. Ida Mae Romm, 731 S. Oregon Ave., $17,300 for tenant improvements. Contractor: Romm Construction Inc. Long River Property LLC, 1835 W. Court St., $38,000 for a sign. Contractor: Mustang Sign Group. Jaime Vargas, 801 S. Fourth Ave., $21,300 for tenant improvements. Contractor: owner. Pasco-Burns LLC, 10181 Burns Road, $1.2 million for tenant improvements. Contractor: to be determined. Pasco-Burns LLC, 10315 Burns Road, $2 million for tenant improvements. Contractor: to be determined.

Zidi LLC, 3407 W. Court St., $154,200 for tenant improvements. Contractor: to be determined. Virk Associates LLC, 2100 E. Hillsboro Road, $15,600 for a sign. Contractor: Quality Signs. Pasco School District No. 1, 6001 Road 84, $25,000 for a sign. Contractor: Cascade Sign & Fabrication. OMASJ2 LLC, 3210 Road 44, $21,000 for grading. Contractor: LCR Construction LLC. CLC Properties LLC, 4845 Broadmoor Blvd., Suite 103, $89,400 for tenant improvements. Contractor: LCR Construction LLC. WA State Migrant Council, 315 W. Court St., $26,600 for a garage. Contractor: Cerda Construction.

RICHLAND Vatos Locos LLC, 2670 First St., Building C, $847,200 for new commercial. Contractor: LCR Construction LLC. Mudo Northwest LLC, 93 Keene Road, $15,000 for heat pump/HVAC. Contractor: Tri-City Heating & Air LLC. City of Richland, 100 Saint St., $247,000 for a commercial reroof. Contractor: City of Richland. STCU, 2590 Queensgate Drive, $13,000 for heat pump/HVAC. Contractor: R & R Heating & A/C Inc. SRA-CH Richland I LLC, 355 Bradley Blvd., $5.2 million for new commercial. Contractor: Cedar & Sage Homes LLC. McDonald’s USA LLC, 1275 George Washington Way, $70,000 for tenant improvements. Contractor: Associated Construction Inc. Winco #45, 101 Columbia Point Drive, $513,400 for a commercial reroof. Contractor: Mountain States Roofing. Burger King #3205, 1033 George Washington Way, $40,000 for heat pump/HVAC. Contractor: Refrigeration Unlimited. Port of Benton, 1802 Terminal Drive, $512,200 for mechanical. Contractor: Campbell Cooling Electrical Plumbing. Richland Ace Hardware, 1415 George Washington Way, $21,000 for heat

pump/HVAC. Contractor: Campbell Cooling Electrical Plumbing.

WEST RICHLAND City of West Richland, 5930 Astoria Road, $20,000 for demolition. Contractor: NB Construction Inc. HAPO Community Credit Union, 6185 Keene Road, $137,700 for a sign. Contractor: Quality Signs.

uBUSINESS LICENSES PASCO Perfection Cleaning LLC, 3302 Canterbury Lane. Siri Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Pasco LLC, 6413 Burden Blvd. Tripps Trailers & Customs LLC, 401 N. Oregon Ave. 509 Tacos, 110 S. Elm Ave. Elemar Oregon LLC, 1879 N. Commercial Ave. Seniav.Skinn LLC, 1908 W. Hopkins St. William Michael Snyder, 920 W. Kennewick Ave., Kennewick. PNW Network Consulting & Sales LLC, 8916 W. Dradie St. Delux Nails & Spa LLC, 1931 W. Sylvester St. Traveling Paws LLC, 908 W. 27th Ave., Kennewick. Shark Cleaning Services LLC, 1625 S. Rainier St., Kennewick. Pristine Lawn Services LLC, 3312 W. Quincy Place. Servpro of Yakima, 700 W. Valley Mall Blvd., Suite 100, Yakima. Genesis Flooring LLC, 4315 Sahara Drive. Worf Communications, 9020 Massey Drive.


Amazing Exteriors, 4505 Pacific Highway East, Suite C2, Fife. J&A Plastering LLC, 5007 W. Clearwater Ave., #38. Patricia M. Engel, 1394 Cortland Ave., Richland. McKey Construction LLC, 7721 E. Trent Ave., Suite 221B, Spokane Valley. Sluder Glass Designs, 5316 Roosevelt Drive. Moran Services, 1115 W. Hopkins St. Sunny Days Daycare LLC, 8014 W. Ruby St. Easterday Trucking LLC, 5235 Industrial Way. Trout Properties Inc., 2369 Island View Road, Burbank. Gonzalez FJ Landscaping LLC, 218912 E. 403 PR SE, Kennewick. B&D Studios, 1712 E. Superior St. Calla Plant Shop, 5310 Reagan Way. Dreamweavers USA LLC, 522 W. Riverside Ave., Spokane. NourishToGlo LLC, 6403 Burden Blvd., Suite A. Strata Inc., 3618 E. Broad Ave., Spokane. Vargas Taqueria, 6908 W. Argent Road, Suite C. Estate Details LLC, 3074 Rickenbacker Drive. BF Ventures LLC dba Trailer Boss, 7821 Martin Way East, Olympia. Stephen Stott, 719 Jadwin Ave., Richland. Saucedo Contracting, 3112 W. Pearl St. Mindful, 1624 W. Court St. JT Accounting LLC, 13213 NE Newman Lake Drive, Newman Lake Sweet, Sour and Sassy, 5501 Hayes Lane. Davis General Construction LLC, 904




Empire Drive. Suarez Auto Detail, 310 W. Columbia St. River City Glass Inc., 6615 E. Main Ave., Spokane. Premier Property Maintenance & Construction, 625 Keys Road, Yakima. Mobile Modular Management Corp., 2699 First St., Richland. Castillo Lawn Care, 724 W. Agate St., Suite A. Domino’s, 3802 W. Court St. A John Carter OD PLLC, 161 Sell Lane, Richland. CMR General Contractor, 8316 Massey Drive. Joylance AFH LLC, 3907 W. Henry St. Jumpin Jax Party Rentals LLC, 8801 St. Thomas Drive, #87. Two8 Consulting, 17 Jasmine Lane. Velvet Sand Notary Services, 932 N. 15th Ave.

Triple R, 9609 NE 23rd Ave., Vancouver. Numerica Credit Union, 2307 W. Court St. Smart Water Experts, 10242 Bode St., Plainfield, Illinois. Detail Guyz, 8524 W. Gage Blvd., Suite A-1, #174, Kennewick. Agus Daycare, 8614 Silver Mound Drive. Bales Custom Homes LLC, 1714 S. Currant St., Kennewick. A & A Painting Services LLC, 1831 W. Nixon St. Columbia Basin Family Therapy LLC, 1619 W. Octave St. DW Excavating Inc., 215 Park St., Davenport. Hearthwood Construction LLC, 5652 W. 28th Ave., Kennewick. Concierge Medicine LLC, 2300 W. 21st Ave., Kennewick.

The Family Handyman of Tri-Cities, 6005 Chapel Hill Blvd., #I202. Dylan Trucking LLC, 8203 Orcas Drive. 3 Rivers Potato Service Inc., 2815 St. Andrews Loop. Monarch Logistics LLC, 3501 Royce Lane. Intelligent Growth Solutions LTD, 5 Simple St., Landmark Exchange Place 2, Edinburgh, United Kingdom. Diamond C Trailers, 4006 FM 3417, Mount Pleasant, Texas. Greenstar Landscaping, 6915 W. Argent Road. L&S Belle Boutique, 5023 Mariola Lane. Another Fun Day Childcare, 1314 W. Irving St. Sagebrush Construction, 5701 N. Fork Road, Yakima. Pro Roofing Tri-Cities LLC, 215 S.

Hugo Ave. Soul Stitchery LLC, 10711 Oak Lane. Mike Colby & Sons Inc., 1247 Montana Ave., Richland. Busy Bees Bilingual Early Learning Academy, 5622 Pierre Drive. H. W. Lochner Inc., 915 118th Ave. SE, Suite 130, Bellevue. Angel’s House Keeping LLC, 415 Rossell Ave., Richland. Hot Mess Ink Press, 12404 Rock Creek Drive. American Transportation Services, 2801 Goodman Road, Union Gap.

RICHLAND Align1 Services LLC, 1301 E. Broward Blvd., Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Vulcan Fire – Idaho LLC, 112 E. Hazel Ave., Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.


TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 Midpoint Technology Group, 7380 Coca Cola Drive, Hanover, Maryland. De Jager Construction Inc., 75 60th St. SW, Wyoming, Michigan. Lyric Works LLC, 206 Colton Court, Saint Charles, Illinois. Fortune Homes, 4130 Acacia Court, Pasco. Mobile Pet Works LLC, 4350 Kimberly St. Topline Counters LLC, 3900 150th Ave. Court East, Sumner. Paint Misbehavin, 1628 Woodbury St. Jim Henry Design Services, 339 Snyder St. Alpine Patio Concepts Inc., 9300 N. Market St., Spokane. Cashmere Plumbing Inc., 100 Paton St., Suite A, Cashmere. High Desert Dental Studio LLC, 750 George Washington Way. Dax Moreno Construction Company, 826 N. 10th Ave., Walla Walla. Taqueria Los Volcanes, 720 George Washington Way. Amy Manor-Downs LMT, 1001 Wright Ave. World Builder LLC, 1156 Columbia Park Trail. Mello Family Inc., 147 Edgewood Drive. McKey Construction LLC, 7721 E. Trent Ave., Spokane Valley. Lantrip Construction, 2541 Speyers Road, Selah. JLB 1 Construction LLC, 623 Hanson Loop, Burbank. Emerald Trim Company LLC, 804 S. First Ave., Yakima. Capshaw LLC, 2616 Road 68, Pasco. Jeri J. Kilburg, 2547 Tiger Lane. Royal Citizen Painters LLC, 2103 Hummingbird Lane, West Richland. O’Donnell Tiling and Construction, 2108 S. Kellogg Place, Kennewick.

At Home Staffing, 11260 Woodsman Drive, Pasco. Elements Boutique, 1105 Cedar Ave. Nicki Sintay, 368 Temple Meadow Lane. Centralia 124 LLC, 723 The Parkway. Morgan Ashley Stephenson, 1033 Willard Ave. Lexar Homes of Tri Cities, 1212 N. Irving Place, Kennewick. Lucky Bao, 1415 George Washington Way. She Sales Online, 2640 Kingsgate Way. Cognoscenti Labs LLC, 2537 Jason Loop. Xinachtli Arts, 2047 Hudson Ave. Chatte Therapy & Consulting LLC, 719 Jadwin Ave. Transcript Sleuth, 1088 Lethbridge Ave. Booker Delivery, 621 Saint St. 3C Company, 209 Enterprise Drive. AMJ Electric LLC, 817 N. Arbutus Ave., Pasco. Arpege LLC, 1368 Westgate Way. Beautify by Brettany, 157 Riverwood St. Sunny Speech and Language Services, 1202 Winslow Ave. Kelly’s Skin Clinic, 1311 Mansfield St. Blest Training, 804 Davenport St. Heartbeat Health Inc., 4864 McEwan Drive. Carlee Gerds, 1207 Aaron Drive. Big Beard Trucking LLC, 124 Jadwin Ave. Avaline Wines, 844 Tulip Lane. Chaparro Landscaping LLC, 1218 13th St., Benton City. Dreamweavers USA LLC, 522 W. Riverside Ave., Spokane. R&R Pavement Maintenance LLC, 7401 Courtney Drive, Pasco. V.P. Design Resource LLC, 267 Gage

Blvd. Uber Paul, 125 Englewood Drive. Empowerment Counseling, 719 Jadwin Drive. Lucky Spa 1 LLC, 1207 George Washington Way. Top-Tier1 Homes, 1118 Benham Court. Shawn Cain Fitness LLC, 1437 Goethals Drive. Lacuna Divine Art & Tattoo Sanctuary LLC, 1380 Jadwin Drive. Ali Mayfield Wines, 2620 Clark Ridge Drive. Cascade Equipment Solutions LLC, 1632 Horn Ave. Sum-it-up Bookkeeping Services LLC, 2640 Kingsgate Way. X Engineered, 2620 Eastwood Way. Yiyi Zhao Art LLC, 1609 Molly Marie Ave. The Family Handyman of Tri-Cities, 6005 Chapel Hill Blvd., Pasco. Beauty with Jordan, 450 Williams Blvd. Darden’s Excavation, 1705 Silverwood Drive. Kor-Bar LLC, 656 Cottonwood Drive. Pathfinder Partners LLC, 3963 Corvina St. Saint Columbia Academy, 1323 McPherson Ave. Aion LLC, 911 S. Edison St., Kennewick. Davenlore Society, 250 Gage Blvd. Done Right Heating and Air LLC, 6626 Chapel Hill Blvd., Pasco. Designed with Art, 1804 W. 11th Ave., Kennewick. SMR Leasing LLC, 103 Center Blvd. Illuminate by Alana, 303 Casey Ave. Stephen Stott, 719 Jadwin Ave. Northcare, 1939 Hoxie Ave. Davis General Construction LLC, 904 Empire Drive, Pasco.


Skye Skyn Therapy, 1325 Aaron Drive. IZN Carpet Cleaning LLC, 4111 Twilight Court, Pasco. Assisting Others, 6113 Kona Drive, West Richland. Nappi Tutoring LLC, 1424 Oxford Ave. FHK Tools LLC, 2206 S. 69th Ave., Yakima. Midnight Electric LLC, 763 Franks Road, Sunnyside. JW-Hospitality LLC, 2112 Sheridan Place. One Stop Mart #10, 780 Stevens Drive. Sagebrush Employment Services LLC, 4250 French St. Detail Guyz, 8524 W. Gage Blvd., Suite A-1, Kennewick. Bluescapes LLC, 732 W. Leola St., Pasco. Simply Shined, 343 Adair Drive. Nina Walker, 4023 Corvina St. Kathleen Schuman Photography, 2403 Olympia St. Concierge Medicine LLC, 2300 W. 21st Ave., Kennewick. Matha’s Cleaning, 6711 W. Victoria Ave., Kennewick. Juanitos Shiny Floors, 3032 Fir Road, Eltopia. Precise Interpreting Services, 5011 Brooklyn Lane, Pasco. Restore Health & Pain Treatment Group, 1601 N. Division St., Spokane. Tom Serrao, 2000 Stevens Drive. Effective Pest Control, 2406 S. Keller St., Kennewick. AGA Services, 506 E. Eighth Ave., Kennewick. Blu Journey, 1386 Jadwin Ave. Walter Co. Properties, 10203 W. 18th Place, Kennewick. Nurse Becky Delegation LLC, 804 W.




43rd Ave., Kennewick. Hooked Up Kennewick Inc., 1615 E. Chemical Drive, Kennewick. Tee Time, 4009 W. Pearl St., Pasco. Columbia River Nanny Connection, 59202 N. River Road, Benton City. Jackie’s Bakery LLC, 212 W. Kennewick Ave., Kennewick. DWA Pacific Northwest Consulting, 1723 Birch Ave. Sisu Trading LLC, 3288 Wild Canyon Way. FBHS, 5109 Monrovia Lane, Pasco. LA Jalisciense Imports LLC, 501 B Warehouse Ave., Sunnyside. Larry Libby Editorial Services, 2840 Crosswater Loop. Joshua H. Barthuly, 1000 W. Fifth Ave., Kennewick. Cerulean Design, 657 Cottonwood Drive. Napolis, 3280 George Washington Way.

Rosa Pulido, 1724 N. Sixth Ave., Pasco. Frances Raquel Farias, 921 W. 15th Place, Kennewick Slidewayz Tuned, 2469 Robertson Drive. Tims Elite Auto Detailing LLC, 4104 Wenview Court, West Richland. Juan Humberto Chavez, 821 S. Grey Ave., Pasco. 9-1-Juan Pest Control, 4205 Des Moines Lane, Pasco. Lino’s Drywall Repairs LLC, 902 S. Sixth Ave., Pasco.

WEST RICHLAND Precision Roofing & Exteriors LLC, 8717 W. Second Ave., Kennewick. Cascade Blinds, 1832 Newhaven Loop, Richland. Cedar and Sage Homes, 1333 Tapteal

Drive, Richland. K&H Facility Services LLC, 1821 W. Fifth Ave., Spokane. Benton Construction, 26005 E. Ruppert Road, Benton City. Custom Concrete Specialists LLC, 7108 W. Yellowstone Ave., Kennewick. Fenix Construction, 1911 Luther Place, Richland. Collins Superior Cleaning Services, 305 Tumbleweed Court. Sweet Z’s Zucchini, 4101 Fallon Drive. Sarah Dahl Photo, 4229 Queen St. Kad Atwani Consulting, 3521 Nicholas Lane. Accountable CES, 2582 Hickory Ave. OG Auto Consulting, 502 Constance Ave. Linda Sant Balero, 5010 Milky Way. Melissa Morasch, 3302 Mount Daniel Road. Salish Real Estate Services, 2137 Sky

Meadow Ave., Richland. Pro-Kleenit Professional Carpet and Upholstery, 18208 153rd Ave. SE, Renton. John’s Painting LLC, 501 Horizon Ave., Moxee. JRC Concrete Construction LLC, 1508 W. 37th Place, Kennewick. Supreme Solutions LLC, 2849 Crosswater Loop, Richland. Amir Colak Construction, 3602 W. 47th Ave., Kennewick. Malik, 904 Sanford Ave., Richland. Shaw Trenchless LLC, 3508 E. Trent Ave., Spokane. Elite Wholesale, 5885 W. Van Giesen St. Urban Mechanical LLC, 4511 Artesia Drive, Pasco. Kevin Bergin Roofing, 66110 N. Harrison Loop, Benton City. Tri-City Shine LLC, 2301 W. Seventh Ave., Kennewick. Jaxson Flooring, 3500 W. Court St., Pasco. WallPro Painting Services LLC, 37 Bull Pen Lane, Pasco. American Concrete & Construction, 210 N. Perry St., Kennewick. ALS Home Repair & Remodeling LLC, 1016 Cedar Ave., Richland. CoffeeNow, 2504 Manufacturing Lane, Richland. Welch Heating & Air Conditioning, 1229 Columbia Park Trail, Richland. White House Cleaning, 4311 Meadow View Drive, Pasco.

PROSSER DirectPointe 7 Inc., 550 Dutch Ridge Court, Midway, Utah. Inland Waterproofing Services Inc., 120 W. Clayton Ave., Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Paintmaster Services Inc., 2670 First St., Richland. The Drain Surgeon, 89758 E. Calico Road, Kennewick. A&R Professional Painting, 709 Hanson Loop, Burbank. Coatings Unlimited, 1911 Gamblin St., Enumclaw. Drywall Contracting LLC, 6006 W. First Ave., Kennewick. J & S Dixon Properties LLC, 1215 Meade Ave. Birrieria Donitas, 490 Wine Country Road. Q Home Loans, 308 Seventh St. Davis General Construction LLC, 904 Empire Drive, Pasco. FHK Tools LLC, 2206 S. 69th Ave., Yakima. Midnight Electric LLC, 763 Franks Road, Sunnyside. AGA Services, 506 E. Eighth Ave., Kennewick. Signcraft LLC, 1015 E. Lincoln Ave., Yakima. Ready and Out Restaurant and Catering, 1827 Wine Country Road. S & R Elite Roofing LLC, 1307 W. Fifth St., Grandview. The Dean’s List Properties, 4023 W. Clearwater Ave., Kennewick. Walla Walla Carpet One LLC, 1611 W. Rose St., Walla Walla. Precision SMP, 405 Wine Country Road. Pure Energy Systems LLC, 1115 AnnaJean Ave., Benton City. Wild Hearts, 1215 Meade Ave. Ground Star Spring LLC, 1118 Playfield Ave. Overton Garage Doors LLC, 36409 W. Old Inland Empire Highway, Benton City. JM Heavy Haul LLC, 103001 W. Old


TRI-CITIES AREA JOURNAL OF BUSINESS | NOVEMBER 2023 Inland Empire Highway. Madame Glass, 301 N. Wilgus Road. R&R Roofing Repair, 8719 W. Falls Ave., Kennewick. Arrangements by Allyson, 163309 W. Byron Road. Optimum General Construction LLC, 4107 McLean Drive, Yakima. Upwind Wines, 413 Spengler St., Richland.

Northwest Construction AB LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 24. Bryan Jay Nelson, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 25.



The state can file lawsuits against people or businesses that do not pay taxes and then get a judgment against property that person or business owns. Judgments are filed in Benton-Franklin Superior Court. The following is from the Franklin County Superior Court Clerk’s Office.

Elizabeth Germeau, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 3. Crescent Blue Moon LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 3. Estrada G. Trucking LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 3. Vanessa Razo, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 3. Serenity Lynn Kinsey, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 3. Norma J. Bennett et al., unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 3. HD Welding Services LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 11. Marie Roche, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 11. Liandro Diaz, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 11. JNJ Flooring LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 11. Rank A Luxury LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 11. Harvest Plus LLC, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 13. IMG General Construction, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 13. Construction Direct LLC, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 13. Eastern WA Construction Inc., unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 13. Skookum Home Solutions LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. Mexico Lindo & Que Rico Corporation, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. Back 40 BBQ LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. P J R Construction Inc., unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. Pedro Antonio Toscano-Gama et al., unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. Valencia Contracting Group LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. Alpha Roofing et al., unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 16. Eddie Balayo Deocampo, unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 18. Walla Walla Valley Plumbing LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 18. Pro Vac LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 18. Hugo Garcia et al., unpaid Department of Labor and Industries taxes, filed Oct. 18. Chivas Construction LLC, unpaid Department of Revenue taxes, filed Oct. 24.

uLIQUOR LICENSES BENTON COUNTY Cafe’Nated, 509 Ninth St., Benton City. License type: takeout/delivery; premixed cocktails/wine to-go; growlers takeout/ delivery; beer/wine restaurant – beer/ wine; catering. Application type: new. Meyers Wine Company, 37404 N. Sunset Road, Benton City. License type: domestic winery <250,000 liters; direct shipment receiver-in WA only; beer/wine on premises endorsement; growlers takeout/delivery. Application type: new.

APPROVED The Prosser House by John Gray, 1232 Wine Country Road, Prosser. License type: direct shipment receiver-in WA only. Application type: added/ change of class/in lieu. Max Mart Truckstop, 528 S. Ely St., Kennewick. License type: grocery store – beer/wine. Application type: assumption. Wheat Head Brewing Co., 92308 E. Locust Grove Road, Kennewick. License type: microbrewery. Application type: new. Blackthorne Neighbourhood Pub, 201 W. Kennewick Ave., Kennewick. License type: direct shipment receiver-in/out WA. Application type: new. China Cafe Express, 201 N. Edison St., Suite 236, Kennewick. License type: beer/wine restaurant – beer/wine. Application type: new. Seoul Fusion, 5011 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite A, Kennewick. License type: soju service. Application type: new. H.A.A. Investments LLC, 4105 Kennedy Road, West Richland. License type: grocery store – beer/wine. Application type: assumption.

DISCONTINUED Seoul Fusion, 5011 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite A, Kennewick. License type: soju service. Application type: discontinued.

FRANKLIN COUNTY NEW Sonilex Industries Ltd., 2505 N. Commercial Ave., Suite A, Pasco. License type: direct shipment receiverin/out WA; beer/wine specialty shop; spirits retailer. Application type: new. Carniceria la Cabana #4, 5426 N. Road 68, Suite C2, Pasco. License type: grocery store – beer/wine. Application type: assumption.

APPROVED D&A Servicios Latinos, 810 S. 10th Ave., Pasco. License type: grocery store – beer/wine. Application type: added/ change of class/in lieu.

uMARIJUANA LICENSES BENTON COUNTY APPROVED Green Point, 32508 W. Kelly Road, Suite A, Benton City. License type: cannabis producer tier 3. Application type: change of corporate officer.




RaysGoldenLion. Tina’s Tasty Treats has opened at 1325 George Washington Way in the Richland Uptown Shopping Center. The glutenfree bakery and deli is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. Contact: 509415-2140;; Facebook.



NEW Clear Mind Cannabis, 3221 W. Court St., Pasco. License type: cannabis retailer; medical cannabis endorsement. Application type: new.

Just Cozy has opened at the Columbia Center mall, 1321 N Columbia Center Blvd, Kennewick. The women’s apparel and clothing store is between Just Sports and Hot Topic in the mall. The mall’s regular hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. Selfie Studio has opened in downtown Kennewick. The studio at 319 W. Kennewick Ave. features 20+ creative photo stations available for parties and events. Contact: 509-491-1117,, Instagram, Facebook. The Underground Taphouse has opened at 4525 N. Road 68, Suite J, Pasco. The taphouse has 32 taps and serves beer, wine and cider. Hours are noon to 8 p.m. Sunday, 2-9 p.m. Monday and Tuesday, 2-10 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, and noon to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Contact:, 509-5677031. Ray’s Golden Lion has opened under new ownership at 1353 George Washington Way in the Richland Uptown Shopping Center. The restaurant is open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and the bar is open from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Contact: 509371-9500; Facebook, Instagram @

Design West Architects is celebrating its 40th anniversary. The architectural firm was founded in 1983 in Idaho as a regional branch of Utah-based Architectural Design West. Since then, offices have opened in Pullman, Kennewick, Ontario and Spokane. Its projects have included the West Richland Police Station, Delta STEM High School in Pasco and Leona Marshall Libby Middle School in West Richland. Hours are: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Contact: 830 N. Columbia Center Blvd., Suite E; 509783-2244; designwest@designwestwa. com. Port of Benton celebrates its 65th anniversary this month. The port was established in 1958 with 290 acres. Today, the port’s district encompasses 11 property sites, totaling 2,756 acres and covering two-thirds of Benton County. Companies in its facilities and properties employ more than 3,000 people and generate more than $600 million each year. The port’s mission is to foster economic development and support the growth of business, bring high-quality jobs to the port’s district and the surrounding region. Contact: 3250 Port of Benton Blvd., Richland;; 509375.3060.



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