Articles by Guest Contributor

Courtesy WSDOT

Five reasons why women should work in the construction trades

The residential construction industry provides a rewarding career path for women. Builders and remodelers across Washington state are seeking skilled artisans and professionals, including carpenters, architects, engineers, plumbers, electricians and painters. In the U.S., women make up about 50 percent of the workforce, but only 9 percent of women work in the construction/home building industry,…

(Courtesy Benton-Franklin Trends)

Retail sector ranks as fourth largest employer in Tri-Cities

By D. Patrick Jones The sale of goods is big business in the greater Tri-Cities. As Benton-Franklin Trends data reveals, the retail sector has consistently ranked as the fourth largest employer in the area’s workforce. Over the course of the past 15 years, local retailers’ share of the workforce has stayed constant at around 10.5…

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes or yam? Let’s unravel the myths

By Marilou Shea If you’re a foodie, you’re probably head down planning your Thanksgiving dinner in earnest right about now, though the ultimate foodie would have started in September when harvest was underway. And this foodie would have already taste-tested new recipes, twisted from the traditional ones, and scoured local stores to ensure the ingredients…

Association of Washington Business Government Affairs Director Amy Anderson helped lead a discussion about the importance of child care to Washington businesses at the 2019 AWB Policy Summit held in September. (Courtesy Brian Mittge/AWB)

Child care is critical issue for the health of families, economy

By Kris Johnson The lack of access to affordable, high-quality child care isn’t just a problem for families. A recently released report shows that it’s also a major issue for employers and for the overall economy. The report, “The Mounting Costs of Child Care: Impacts of child care affordability and access to Washington’s Employers and…

Brunell column Handshake

Job creators, job holders must work together for success

By Don C. Brunell Employers and employees need to set aside their differences and partner with one another. The same advice should be heeded by our elected officials. Easier said than done, especially in a vitriolic and politically-charged atmosphere punctuated by an absence of listening and a profusion of people shouting at one another.  Success…

Beau Ruff, Cornerstone Wealth Strategies

Solo 401(k) for business owners offers tax savings

By Beau Ruff Conventional financial wisdom suggests that the first thing a person should do after building the three- to six month rainy-day fund is to maximize contributions to retirement accounts. Qualified retirement accounts offer a clear tax advantage: contributions are pre-tax, and therefore can reduce taxable income and the associated tax liability. Further, the…


Numerica Credit Union off Road 100 in Pasco. (Photo by Scott Butner Photography)

City of Pasco: Record-breaking growth pushes further west, north

By Andrew Kirk Pasco’s residential subdivisions continue to gobble up farmland and large buildings are sprouting up all over industrial zones. Franklin County is offering to let the city annex 4,800 acres of land to the north so it has room to grow, said Rick White, community and economic development director for Pasco. Prior to…

Multifamily housing with 33 units on five acres off Bombing Range Road in West Richland. (Photo by Scott Butner Photography)

City of West Richland: Residential projects continue to outpace commercial sector

By Andrew Kirk The Tri-City’s bedroom community saw continued residential growth in 2019 and more is on the horizon. West Richland issued 86 residential building permits for the first half of 2019, compared to 42 during the same period last year. The Heights at Red Mountain Ranch, the largest residential development project ever approved by…

Pasco wharf east of the cable bridge. (Photo by Scott Butner Photography)

Port of Pasco: Warehouses, airport, wharf developments – oh my!

By Andrew Kirk The Port of Pasco’s key properties continue to see interest, growth and improvements. The port manages the Tri-Cities Airport and the marine terminal east of the cable bridge, and promotes the development of land on multiple sites in east Pasco to boost the economy in south Franklin County. The port’s operations and…

Vintner’s Village off Merlot Drive in Prosser. (Photo by Kristina Lord)

Port of Benton: New projects taking shape in PNNL’s neighborhood

By Andrew Kirk Port of Benton property not far from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is changing hands as plans are hatched to develop industrial flex space in north Richland. The Port of Benton manages 2,756 acres in the north, central and west side of Benton County, including 50 buildings on 12 sites, 16 miles of short-rail line,…

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