State lawmakers, leaders to visit Port Angeles for rural economic development meeting

PORT ANGELES — Lawmakers and leaders from across the state, including Speaker of the House Frank Chopp and state Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, are scheduled to come to Port Angeles on Thursday to discuss rural economic development.

“This is about listening to each other, and working together, to help families and businesses in timber and farm country,” state Rep. Mike Chapman, the lead lawmaker for House Democrats on the issue, said in a press release. “It takes a team effort to create more opportunity and development for our small towns and counties in rural Washington.”

The first part of the day will start in room J-47 in Peninsula College’s Pirate Union Building, with opening remarks from Chopp and Chapman, D-Port Angeles, at 10 a.m. followed by talks with Franz, tribal leaders, local businesses and school board members and a tour of the college’s new child care facility. This portion of the summit is public.

“Health care and child care were huge concerns at our first rural event in Aberdeen,” Chapman said. “You can’t have a functioning community without doctors, nurses and hospitals. And working moms and dads can’t work if they can’t find good, affordable child care for their kids. Jobs, education, affordable child care, tax reform, health care, better infrastructure — all these issues are intertwined.”

In the afternoon, the event will switch to the Composite Recycling Technology Center for a private tour of that facility, which has spearheaded research into repurposing leftover composite from aircraft and car manufacturing into products and new uses, including the possibility of embedding small composite beams into cross-laminated timber to create “super wood.”

“Washington state can — and should be — a world leader in cross-laminated timber and composite recycling,” said Rep. Steve Tharinger, D-Sequim, chair of the House Capital Budget Committee, which controls the state’s construction budget. “These new ideas can create good, middle-class jobs in rural Washington, if we have the courage and vision to see them through.”

________

Reporter Jesse Major can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56250, or at jmajor@peninsuladailynews.com.

More in Politics

Republican Jaime Herrera Beutler, left, and Democrats Patrick DePoe, center, and Kevin Van De Wege, all candidates for state Commissioner of Public Lands, met before the Port Angeles Business Association on Tuesday to discuss their priorities for leading the Department of Natural Resources. (Peter Segall/Peninsula Daily News)
Fires are top priority for Commissioner of Public Lands hopefuls

Candidates want to increase state harvests

League of Women Voters sets candidate forum schedule

Hopefuls for state seats, county commissioner position invited to debate

From left to right, State Sen. Emily Randall, D-Bremerton, state Sen. Drew MacEwen, R-Union, Port Angeles attorney Graham Ralston and Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, all candidates for Washington’s 6th Congressional District, appear before the Port Angeles Business Association on Tuesday to answer questions about their priorities for serving in Congress. (Peter Segall/Peninsula Daily News)
Congress hopefuls meet for a forum

Candidates to focus on bipartisanship

Clallam PUD candidates cite costs as top priority

Three hopefuls line up for six-year board position

More candidates join local races

Third declares for state Senate seat

Packed races begin to emerge

Political hopefuls file intent to run

Heather Dudley-Nollette.
Bayside director to run for Jefferson County commissioner

Heather Dudley-Nollette seeks District 1 seat

Port Angeles City Council hopefuls Kate Dexter and Travis Berglund answer questions during a Port Angeles Business Association forum Tuesday. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)
Port Angeles mayor to run for county commission

Dexter has supported climate action plan, affordable housing

Emily Randall, left, and Hilary Franz.
Stalwarts take sides in race for Kilmer’s seat

A growing constellation of Democratic Party influencers are choosing sides in the… Continue reading

Online learning keeps rising among state’s K-12 students

Online learning for Washington’s public school kids is here to stay. That’s… Continue reading

Jefferson County turnout tops in state

More than half registered voters handed in ballots

Battle narrows to Biden and Trump

Tuesday’s primaries give each the delegates needed for a November contest