Dear Friends and Neighbors,
The legislative session is scheduled to end in a few days. I am pleased to share that several important Yakima County projects are currently funded in draft budgets circulating in Olympia.
Funding for the Central Washington State Fair
The Central Washington State Fair has always been one of my favorite events of the year. From the times in my childhood when I earned admission by volunteering at the Young Life booth to today's trips on the caterpillar with my preschool daughters, it is always a memorable experience for me and my family. Because of COVID-19, the Central Washington State Fair was cancelled last year for the first time since World War II. I want to make sure it comes back this year stronger than ever in 2021 and beyond. That's why I voted yes on Senate Bill 5362, which ensures continued funding for our state's fairs. Fairs teach our young people the importance of hard work and give them the opportunity to showcase their talents and volunteer in support of good causes. See you in line for an elephant ear.
Training Yakima County's Youth for High-Demand Jobs
Rural skills centers like the Yakima Valley Technical School are important because students gain skills while still in high school that lead directly to good paying jobs upon graduation. The increased funding I championed through legislation and the budget will help skills centers in Sunnyside and Yakima expand programs in high-demand fields like construction, cybersecurity, and medical tech.
You can watch my comments on the House floor asking my colleagues to support the funding here.
Central Washington Junior Livestock Show, Toppenish Rodeo Grounds, and Yakima Valley Fair & Rodeo in Grandview
Thanks in large part to my seatmate Sen. Jim Honeyford, your 15th District team was able to secure funding in the preliminary budget for two important projects in Yakima County. The first is $200,000 for the Yakima Valley Fair & Rodeo in Grandview, which will use the money to complete a livestock facility for use by 4-H and FFA students. The second is $20,000 for construction planning to renovate and build out the Toppenish Rodeo grounds to support community events like the Central Washington Junior Livestock Show. The budgets have not been finalized, but we are encouraged that these projects are included in both the House and Senate budgets.
Thanks for taking the time to read my legislative updates. I welcome and appreciate your feedback.