Articles by Guest Contributor

William Robertson of Bill & Debbie Robertson Nissan in Pasco shows off the dual plug-ins on the new Nissan Leaf.

Better batteries likely to drive electric car market

By Andrew Kirk With a nuclear reservation, national laboratory and cutting-edge agricultural processing in the Tri-Cities’ backyard, Jeff Leskovar expected Mitsubishi’s plug-in hybrid electric vehicle Outlander would be well received. “We thought they’d be popular with Hanford scientists, a high-tech product like this,” he said. “But we sell a lot of them to Spokane.” Almost…

Snake River dam removal distracts from salmon recovery efforts

By Todd Myers Should Washington state risk 11 years of salmon recovery funding on something scientists believe will do little to increase salmon populations? How about eliminating electricity generation equivalent to every solar panel and wind turbine in Washington state? Essentially, those arguing we need to destroy the Snake River dams suggest we do both.…

SIGN engineer Don Hoyer demonstrates SIGN surgery during the annual SIGN conference.

SIGN Fracture Care ends 20th year with goals for next five years

By Andrew Kirk SIGN Fracture Care International ends its 20th year in business with a goal to more than triple the number of patients it serves each year over the next five years. Doctors trained by Richland-based SIGN treat long-bone fractures in 30,000 people per year in dozens of developing countries. The nonprofit manufactures the…


Online purchases, phishing, tech support scams among most reported in Tri-Cities

By Tyler Russell Your Better Business Bureau Northwest and Pacific wants you to be safe navigating the world when your money and personal information are involved. Scams popping up in your backyard are a fact of life, but we don’t have to be happy about it, and we can do something about it. Let’s dive…

4.1.1 Share of Children Ages 3 and 4 Enrolled in Preschool

2020 wish list should include making progress on Tri-Cities’ early learning gap

By D. Patrick Jones In this year-in-review issue, I’d like to look forward – far forward to the impacts of early childhood education in at least a couple decades. This is not the usual stuff of my columns, but the topic has significant implications for the future, including economic ones, of the greater Tri-Cities. As…


Your best friend can be a strict liability

By Beau Ruff Personal liability exposure is an important planning consideration. A person should be able to identify potential risks and assess means to mitigate those risks with the ultimate goal of reducing liability and the costs associated with the liability. In the world of liability, “man’s best friend” presents notable liability traps for the…

Nick Bacon of Asotin County Fire District 1, drove 6 1/2 hours to Olympia from Clarkston to pick up this bag of toys and a check for $1,000 to bring holiday cheer to families in his community. Over the past three decades, the Association of Washington Business has raised nearly $450,000 for rural fire districts to provide a bright Christmas for families in need through this annual project.

Sharing the spirit of the season across our state

By Kris Johnson Sometimes you meet a person who makes you feel proud to be a human being. When that person is only 10 years old, it’s especially inspiring. Several of us at the Association of Washington Business had exactly that experience recently as we prepared for the lighting of the 31st annual Holiday Kids’…


Expect changes to real estate excise taxes in coming year

By Dennis Gisi I was amazed at the number of items we voted to maintain or repeal that were listed on the Nov. 5 ballot that contained the phrase, “without a vote of the people.” I am not sure why I am surprised. I am learning a lot about how things are done in Olympia,…

This view of Kennewick Avenue in 1978 is not just a holiday postcard, it’s a time capsule of downtown Kennewick development as it strived for relevance.

’Tis the season to deck the halls, streets, sidewalks

The tinsel candles attached to the light poles gave a festive air to Kennewick’s downtown shopping district in 1978, which at the time included shops such as Coin Cradle, Brutzman’s Office Supplies and the Persian Palace. The festive spirit continued in downtown Kennewick with the annual Numerica Hometown Holiday parade held on Dec. 7. The…

Seth Kitzke, a Richland High graduate, is the head winemaker for Kitzke Cellars on Candy Mountain, which is likely to be Washington’s next American Viticultural Area. (Photo by Andy Perdue)

Candy Mountain may be Washington’s newest wine region

By Andy Perdue The American Viticultural Areas system in the United States is a way for the federal government to officially recognize a wine grape growing region. At this point, Washington has 14 federally approved AVAs. In the Tri-Cities, wineries and grape growers are awaiting approval of the state’s newest AVA: Candy Mountain. The brown…

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