Director's Update

Lisa Brown confirmed in Senate
Dr. Lisa Brown looks on with husband Brian McClatchey as the Washington state Senate voted to confirm Lisa as director of the Washington Department of Commerce March 29, 2019.

Legislative update

As the budgets roll out, Commerce is actively working with legislators to ensure they leave this session having invested in the necessary resources to address our affordable housing and homelessness crisis across the state.

Pateros Water Tower

Strengthening communities by building infrastructure: Pateros, Snohomish

In the summer of 2014, the largest wildfire in our state’s history devastated communities in Okanogan County. The city of Pateros was hit hard. Not only were hundreds of homes lost, but fire engulfed and severely damaged the city’s water tanks. Commerce has partnered with Pateros to address its severe water system needs and improve this rural city’s capacity to recover. Funding from Commerce includes a $2.7 million Community Development

Strong economy

Our economy is strong; let’s keep moving forward

We enter 2017 with a good deal of uncertainty about our nation and the world, but Washington’s economy is strong. Our GDP in the first quarter of 2016 grew three times faster than the national rate, and we’ve outpaced the nation as a whole for four years running, growing 8.1% compared to 6.5% from 2012-15.

Budget update

Strengthening communities is our call of duty at the Department of Commerce. We are the only agency in state government that touches every aspect of community and economic development. Here are the highlights of the Governor’s proposed 2017-19 biennial budget that support our top priorities of affordable housing and homelessness, resilient communities and underserved communities:

Strengthening communities by building infrastructure

Strengthening communities by building infrastructure

Strong communities are those with modern water, sewer and communications infrastructure; reliable, renewable energy systems; and other facilities capable of serving not only the needs but the aspirations of future generations. Commerce works to expand opportunities in rural and underserved communities.

Clean Energy

Strengthening communities by building resilient communities

Resilience is also about helping communities plan and adapt for the growing impacts of climate change, both economic and environmental, such as increased wildfires and floods, air and water quality damage and public health challenges from carbon pollution.

Strengthening communities by providing human services

Strengthening communities by providing human services

Building strong communities is essential to economic prosperity. Our name “Commerce” often makes people first think of us as championing business and economic development. We do that, but more important is the notion that a healthy, safe community is the foundation for economic prosperity. One can’t exist without the other.

Strengthening communities by growing the economy

Strengthening communities by growing the economy

Our Office of Economic Development and Competitiveness (OEDC) works on domestic and international business development, provides export assistance and other value-added services to small businesses, and partners with the private sector to develop and implement policy and strategies to develop key industry sectors.