The Kennewick P.F. Chang’s restaurant will close Jan. 21.
A sign at the 8108 W. Gage Blvd. restaurant thanks customers “for being part of our family.”
A P.F. Chang’s spokesman said the restaurant’s lease has expired.
The 6,615-square-foot Chinese restaurant has been open for 10 years and employs about 50 people.
The building is valued at $1.5 million, according to the Benton County Assessor’s Office.
The restaurant features patio dining, curbside pickup and catering delivery.
The first P.F. Chang’s opened in 1993 and there are more than 210 U.S. restaurants, plus 66 international locations in more than 19 countries, according to the company’s website.
The closure of the Kennewick restaurant leaves four other locations in the state: Spokane, Seattle, Lynnwood and Bellevue.
The Pasco School District is holding a teacher job fair from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Jan. 17-18 inside the student mall at Chiawana High School at 8125 W. Argent Road.
Attendees will learn about new teaching positions in the 2018-19 school year. They will also get a chance to meet with administrators and possibly interview. Interested teachers are encouraged to bring a current résumé with them.
Teachers who are interested in attending should RSVP by registering for the event at bit.ly/PSDteacherfair.
A donor has agreed to match up to $167,000 toward You Medical’s Going Mobile campaign covering construction and two years of operating expenses for a mobile medical unit.
You Medical used to be called the Tri-Cities Pregnancy Network.
The bus will serve women in areas surrounding the Tri-Cities with free pregnancy testing, limited ultrasounds, prenatal vitamins, resource referrals and more.
You Medical has already raised $35,000 for the project. If the entire $167,000 is matched, the fundraising goal of $367,000 would be met, fully paying for the project.
The matching funds campaign runs through the end of January.
For more information and to donate, visit youmedical.org/mobile.
A Feb. 9 ribbon-cutting is planned to celebrate the completion of the first phase of the Columbia Gardens Urban Wine & Artisan Village.
The public event takes place at 2:30 p.m. at 421 E. Columbia Drive in Kennewick.
The project’s first tenants are Bartholomew Winery, and Palencia Wine Co. and Monarcha Wines. Their winemakers will be on hand and the tasting rooms will be open immediately following the ceremony.
Located on nearly six acres adjacent to Clover Island and the Columbia River, the wine village is a Port of Kennewick and city of Kennewick project to transform a long-neglected waterfront into a pedestrian-friendly, regional waterfront gathering place.
Columbia Generating Station sent more than 867 million kilowatt-hours of electricity to the Northwest power grid in December, a new record for monthly generation.
The previous record was set in January 2016: 860.8 million net kilowatt-hours.
Alex Javorik, Energy Northwest vice president for engineering, credited both recent plant upgrades, which boosted Columbia’s output, and good teamwork for the record-breaking performance.
Columbia also performs more efficiently during the cold winter months. For instance, Columbia set a record for July generation last year, producing nearly 856 million kilowatt-hours, or about 11 million kilowatt-hours less than December’s total.
During December, Columbia operated at a 104.4 percent capacity factor.
Capacity factor is a ratio based on the maximum amount of electricity the plant could send to the grid at the most restrictive time of the year, which for thermal power plants is during summer.
The nuclear energy plant, the third largest generator of electricity in Washington state, set annual generation records in 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2016. During its lifetime, Columbia has produced more than 240 billion kilowatt-hours of carbon-free electricity.
Columbia Generating Station is owned and operated by Energy Northwest and has 1,207 megawatts of gross capacity. All of its electricity is sold at-cost to the Bonneville Power Administration, and 92 Northwest utilities receive a percentage of its output.
The facility is 10 miles north of Richland.
The Tri-Cities Immigrant Coalition is hosting a public forum on immigration and the local economy at 7 p.m. Jan. 23 in the Benton PUD Auditorium at 2721 W. 10th Ave. in Kennewick.
Local experts representing the farming sector, small businesses, and research and education institutions will present information and answer audience questions.
The coalition was formed in 2017 as a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to providing the public with information to seek equitable solutions to immigration issues.
The Pasco City Council is seeking applicants to serve on city boards and commissions.
Those interested can go to pasco-wa.gov/boards for a description of the city’s boards and commissions.
Applicants appointed to boards are expected to regularly attend meetings.
To apply, call 509-545-3404, go to the city manager’s office at City Hall, 525 N. Third Ave., Pasco or go to pasco-wa.gov/boards. The deadline to apply is Jan. 19.
The Reach museum will be offering a free self-guided makerspace activity from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays in January.
Supplies and instructions will be available. Inspiration for the makerspace is from the new exhibit of prehistoric art.
Admission is $10 for adults and $6 for students, seniors and military. Those under 5 and Reach members are free.
H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Racing Series and the Tri-Cities Water Follies is holding the 53rd annual Champion’s Gala on Feb. 10 at the Red Lion Hotel at Columbia Center in Kennewick.
The event commemorates the H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Series and will include presentations of the national championship trophy along with other awards.
It is the first time since the sport’s awards presentation began in 1964 that the gala will be held in the Tri-Cities.
Cost is $75 per person, or $600 for a table for eight. Cocktails will be served from 5 to 6:45 p.m., where attendees can mingle with drivers; dinner begins at 7 p.m. with an awards presentation to follow.
Tickets are available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Tri-City Water Follies Office, 621 N. Gum, Suite A in Kennewick, or at H1Unlimited.com.
Dinner selections can be made when buying tickets.
For more information, call 509-783-4675.
Pasco residents began catching rides via Uber in their city before the new year arrived.
The ride-sharing is possible because the Pasco City Council in early December passed new for-hire regulations eliminating a fingerprint requirement allowing the operation of transportation network companies like Uber.
Uber launched in the Tri-Cities in 2016 but couldn’t pick up passengers in Pasco because it couldn’t operate in a market requiring driver fingerprint checks.
Uber pick-ups are now available in all of the Tri-Cities, including West Richland and at the Tri-Cities Airport in Pasco.
“We’re thrilled to be rolling out in Pasco,” said David Williams, territory manager for Uber in Washington, in a news release. “We’re grateful that people will now be able to request an Uber ride no matter where they are in the Tri-Cities, even if they’re at the airport.”
Uber connects people seeking a ride with people looking to earn money by providing transportation. Rides are requested via an app on iOS or Android smartphones.
“Not only is Uber an easy way for people to make extra money and a convenient way to get around, it is also a safe, alternative form of transportation for people who should not be behind the wheel,” Williams said.
For those interested in driving, more information and directions on how to sign up can be found at uber.com/drive.
Founded in 2009, the company operates in more than 600 cities and 70 counties around the world.
The Boys & Girls Club of Benton and Franklin Counties celebrated the opening of its new teen center in early January.
The new teen area at the Main Branch Club at 801 N. 18th Ave in Pasco boasts a fully stocked kitchenette, modern workspaces, game areas and more in a contemporary, industrial environment.
The nonprofit received a $50,000 Lowe’s grant to renovate and remodel a section of the Pasco club, and the home improvement store’s staff worked to renovate the space.
The Boys & Girls Club said that is has noted a significant increase in teen membership over the past four years.
The club serves 100 middle and high school youth each day throughout the region. Currently, the Main Branch Club sees 30 teens after school each day. Teens are always welcome at the club and membership is free.
The Boys & Girls Club held a ribbon-cutting for the new teen room in early January.
A free presentation on protecting children against pornography will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 15 at the Kennewick High School auditorium, at 500 S. Dayton St.
Speakers include Benton-Franklin Superior Court Judge Joe Burrowes, Richland Police Department’s police chief and member of the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, Chris Skinner; and Kristen A. Jenson, author of “Good Pictures Bad Pictures” and founder of ProtectYoungMinds.org.
Tools and information from multiple organizations also will be available to families.
When it comes to getting through the day with sleep deprivation, science may explain why some people function better than others.
Researchers at Washington State University found that those with a variation of the gene DRD2 are more resilient to the effects of sleep deprivation than those with other variations of the gene when performing tasks requiring cognitive flexibility — or the ability to make decisions based on changing information.
Paul Whitney, WSU professor of psychology and lead author of the study, along with Hans Van Dongen, director of the WSU Sleep and Performance Research Center at WSU Spokane, compared subjects on their ability to anticipate events and cognitive flexibility in response to changing circumstances.
Forty-nine adults participated in the study at the WSU Spokane sleep laboratory. After a 10-hour rest period, 34 participants were randomly selected to go 38 hours without sleep while the other participants were allowed to sleep normally.
The WSU team is applying what they learned from its study to develop new ways to help surgeons, police officers, soldiers and other individuals who regularly deal with the effects of sleep deprivation.
The state Department of Ecology is seeking public comment on the draft permit renewal of the Hanford Site Air Operating Permit.
The state’s regulations for control of air emissions limit the duration of an air operating permit to five years. The current permit expires March 31. A new permit is needed as the Hanford Site still has air emissions. The comment period ends Feb. 16.
The proposed modifications are online at bit.ly/2CfBEOK.
To comment, the preferred method is going to bit.ly/2DEAc4K. Input also can be mailed or delivered to Daina McFadden, 3100 Port of Benton Blvd., Richland, WA 99354.
Washington is ranked the fourth fastest-growing state during the past year.
Idaho took the No. 1 spot.
Washington’s population increased from 7.28 million to 7.4 million from July 1, 2016, to July 1, 2017, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s national and state population estimates released in December.
Idaho’s population increased 2.2 percent to 1.7 million.
Following Idaho for the largest percentage increases in population were Nevada (2 percent), Utah (1.9 percent), Washington (1.7 percent), and Florida along with Arizona (1.6 percent).
The Tri-Cities’ population mirrored the state trend with the population growing by 1.7 percent in 2017 to 283,830 people. That’s up from 279,170 in 2016, according to state Office of Financial Management’s data released last summer.
The U.S. population grew by 2.3 million between July 1, 2016, and July 1, 2017, representing a 0.72 percent increase to 325.7 million.
In January 2018, the United States is expected to experience one birth every 8 seconds and one death every 10 seconds.
The Census Bureau’s U.S. and World Population Clock simulates real-time growth of the United States and world populations at census.gov/popclock.
The Pasco School District is seeking volunteers to assist with Enterprise Week, an annual business simulation event for high school seniors.
The March 26-30 event provides seniors from Chiawana, New Horizons and Pasco high schools the opportunity to be paired with a business professional or community members.
Volunteers are needed to serve as mentors, consultants and judges.
Mentors are needed daily during the event from 7:20 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and duties can be shared if volunteers are unable to commit to all hours.
Consultants are needed from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. March 27-28 to help with marketing, financials and presentation skills. The public is invited to view student presentations from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. March 30 and vote for the top three firms.
For more information, call 509-543-6700, ext. 2670, or visit psd1.org/enterprise.
The number of student loan borrowers in Washington state likely exceeds 800,000, an increase of more than 35 percent compared to a decade ago, according to a recent report released by the Washington State Attorney General’s Office.
Washingtonians collectively owed $24.4 billion in student loan debt at the end of 2016.
Attorney General Ferguson’s office has received hundreds of complaints from student loan borrowers. Ferguson’s report highlights several of these complaints.
“There are too many student loan borrowers in Washington who are struggling to make payments,” Ferguson said in a statement. “Pursuing an education should not force students to take on insurmountable debt. We must do more to protect Washingtonians who feel like higher education equals a debt sentence.”
The report identifies racial, gender and age disparities among student loan borrowers, the loans’ impacts on borrowers and the reasons these borrowers face so many obstacles to repayment.
Student loan debt has the highest delinquency rate of any form of consumer debt and has strict limitations in discharging it through bankruptcy.
After federal tax reform legislation was passed, INB, a regional independent bank, announced it would pass on some of its tax savings to employees.
The parent company, Northwest Bancorp, expects a tax reduction of 14 percent. As a result, INB will give its 200 non-executive team employees a $500 bonus and establish a $15 minimum wage in the company.
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