Articles by Guest Contributor


A message to the 2021 Legislature: First, do no harm

Ten months after the arrival of the coronavirus in Washington, the Legislature convened on Jan. 11 for a new session amid a pandemic that will shape every aspect of the session, from the way lawmakers conduct business (over computer screens instead of beneath the Capitol dome) to the issues they debate. There is cause for…


Empty office space hints at changes brought by Covid. Will it be permanent?

Now that vaccines are available, we hope our lives will return to the way they were before the coronavirus pandemic blanketed the globe. That is not likely to occur. Last March our booming economy was clobbered by Covid-19. A worldwide pandemic ensued. There was no vaccine to counter it and even though vaccines were developed…


Talking about death is hard but you can do it

In a pandemic and pretty much in life, people are dealing with grief at some level every single day. Death, divorce, loss of a job, and lately, the death of the life as we once knew it pre-Covid. Recently, I ran into the mom of my son’s elementary school friend who I hadn’t seen in…


Legislature must act quickly to head off looming unemployment insurance crisis

Before the Legislature arrives for the 2021 session, some businesses in Washington will be facing the very real prospect of a 500% tax increase. That is on day one, before lawmakers even begin to talk about passing new taxes like an income tax, a capital gains tax or a tax on high-income earners. And it…


Cargo carriers pick up where airline passengers dropped off

It’s no secret that airlines and airplane manufacturers have been clobbered by the coronavirus pandemic. International flights traditionally flown by jumbo jets are particularly hard hit. Borders are closed and people aren’t flying. There is a small silver-lining. Just as restaurants started take-out service to survive, airlines are filling planes with freight. U.S. airlines are…


Shopping locally for holidays is more critical than ever

It’s no secret the Covid-19 pandemic has made a huge impact on how Washington retailers and restaurants operate. With additional restrictions implemented at the start of the holiday season as cases surged, it’s another challenge for local small businesses. But that’s where we as a community can step in. Small retailers and restaurants are relying…

YIR 2020_KarlDye

The best view of 2020: The rearview mirror

About a year ago I was contacted by an executive search firm to apply for the president/CEO position at the Tri-City Development Council, or TRIDEC. After a two-month process, I was selected. We sold our house in Lewiston and moved down the Snake River to start the best job I have ever had. But if…

YIR 2020_MichaelNovakovich jpg

Tri-Citians shine in darkest days of pandemic

2020 has been a turbulent year for tourism as it has been for so many industries and individuals. Tourism is a significant economic engine for our community, driving half a billion dollars in visitor spending and supporting more than 5,600 jobs. Tourism helps small businesses not only survive but thrive and helps attract new businesses.…

YIR 2020_LoriMattson

Tri-City chamber is your pandemic partner and advocate

Making it through a worldwide pandemic has been both a challenge and an opportunity for the Tri-City Regional Chamber of Commerce – requiring a great deal of “out of the box thinking.” Covid-19 offered little choice for chambers and associations but to retool the programs, products, events and services we offer, with a focus on…

YIR 2020_TimArntzen

Columbia Gardens evolves into destination area despite pandemic

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, Port of Kennewick spent 2020 engaging in transparent urban planning; working to revitalize Kennewick’s historic waterfront district; and constructing a regional town center in place of the former Vista Field airport. At Vista Field the port is following a community-driven master plan to create a pedestrian-focused development with mixed-use neighborhoods and…

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