Governor’s 2024 Smart Communities Awards nominations now open

Governor’s 2024 Smart Communities Awards nominations now open

Annual awards recognize outstanding work in community planning and development Olympia, Wash. — The Washington State Department of Commerce has opened nominations for the 18th annual Governor’s Smart Communities Awards, a program that recognizes outstanding work by local governments and their partners on long-term community planning and development. Nominations feature the best our state has to offer in collaborative community development and local comprehensive planning. Community leaders look to this…

Washington selected to participate in new HUD, HHS Housing and Services Partnership Accelerator program

Washington selected to participate in new HUD, HHS Housing and Services Partnership Accelerator program

Only eight states and D.C. were selected for the new program OLYMPIA, WA — Washington state was recently selected for technical assistance resources from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Housing and Services Partnership Accelerator (Accelerator) program. According to a press release from HHS, the Accelerator will help unlock resources to reduce homelessness by addressing health-related social needs, such…

Governor appoints Aaron Wheeler to lead Washington State Broadband Office

Governor appoints Aaron Wheeler to lead Washington State Broadband Office

Wheeler has nearly 20 years’ experience working with Tribes and underserved communities OLYMPIA, WA — Gov. Jay Inslee appointed Aaron Wheeler to serve as director of the Washington State Broadband Office within the Department of Commerce. Wheeler is an information technology professional with 18 years of experience working with the Suquamish Tribe’s government. “Rural internet access is a priority in Washington, and Aaron’s experience will help everyone get connected no…

Commerce awards over $85 million to expand electric vehicle charging across Washington state

Commerce awards over $85 million to expand electric vehicle charging across Washington state

Funding going to nonprofits, utilities, tribes and public agencies in communities with highest need OLYMPIA, WA – Governor Jay Inslee joined Washington State Department of Commerce Director Mike Fong today to announce over $85 million in grants that will fund nearly 5,000 new electric vehicle (EV) charging stations in communities throughout the state. All of the funds are going to nonprofits, electric utilities, tribes and public agencies, and half of…

Commerce invests $312.6 million in affordable housing and homeownership opportunities for Washington residents with low incomes

Commerce invests $312.6 million in affordable housing and homeownership opportunities for Washington residents with low incomes

Historic funding to increase state’s affordable housing stock by 3,913 multifamily/rental units and new homes for low-income homebuyers OLYMPIA, WA — The Washington State Department of Commerce today announced historic investments totaling $312.6 million to address the urgent need for affordable housing in communities throughout Washington state. Lack of affordable housing and sufficient supportive housing options for vulnerable populations are top contributors to chronic homelessness. It is estimated that over…

Senate committee unanimously confirms Mike Fong as Washington State Commerce Director

Senate committee unanimously confirms Mike Fong as Washington State Commerce Director

Gov. Jay Inslee appointed the former U.S. Small Business Administration Pacific Northwest Regional Administrator and Seattle Deputy Mayor to lead Commerce in April. OLYMPIA, WA – The Washington State Senate Business, Financial Services, Gaming and Trade Committee today confirmed by unanimous vote the appointment of Mike Fong to lead the Department of Commerce. A final confirmation vote by the full Senate will take place during the 2024 session which convened…

Inslee budget proposes $1.2 billion increase for Department of Commerce

Inslee budget proposes $1.2 billion increase for Department of Commerce

Focus on equity runs throughout significant funding increases serving range of priorities from housing to clean energy, broadband expansion and helping secure federal funding OLYMPIA, WA — Gov. Jay Inslee’s supplemental budget released today proposes a $1.2 billion increase for the Department of Commerce, including $415 million in operating funds and $775 million in new capital dollars. The proposed budget funds all of the agency’s upcoming legislative requests. Commerce is…

2023  Washington Governor’s Smart Communities Award recipients announced

2023 Washington Governor’s Smart Communities Award recipients announced

Annual awards recognize excellence, creativity, collaboration in land use planning and development OLYMPIA, WA — The Washington State Department of Commerce is pleased to announce the 11 winners of the 2023 Governor’s Smart Communities Awards. Presented annually since 2006, the Smart Communities Awards program recognizes local governments and their partners for exceptional land use planning and development. The awards showcase effective implementation of the state’s Growth Management Act (GMA). The honored…

American Aerospace Materials Manufacturing Center in Spokane designated one of nation’s 31 inaugural Tech Hubs

American Aerospace Materials Manufacturing Center in Spokane designated one of nation’s 31 inaugural Tech Hubs

Led by Gonzaga University, AAMMC Tech Hub brings together some 50 public and private partners primed for innovation and job creation in development and manufacturing of composite materials for the future of lightweight, sustainable aircraft. OLYMPIA, WA — The American Aerospace Materials Manufacturing Center located in Spokane, WA today was designated as one of the 31 inaugural Tech Hubs across the nation by the Biden-Harris administration through the U.S. Department of…

US Dept. of Energy Selects Pacific Northwest for Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub

US Dept. of Energy Selects Pacific Northwest for Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub

Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Association’s PNWH2 Hub enters negotiations with DOE for initial hydrogen hub federal funding  OLYMPIA, WA – The Pacific Northwest will continue to lead the way in building a clean energy future as a network of clean hydrogen suppliers and end-users to decarbonize some of the hardest-to-abate sectors of the region’s economy is one step closer to reality. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today selected the Pacific…