2016 Progress Section

Progress Edition

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory: Discovery in action

Discovery in action. These words describe what we do at the Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. For more than 50 years, we have advanced the frontiers of science and engineering in the service of our nation and the world. We make fundamental scientific discoveries that illuminate the mysteries of our planet and the universe. We apply our scientific expertise to tackle some of the most challenging problems in energy, the environment and national security.

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Pacific Northwest Site Office: Prepared for the next challenge

Scientific and engineering breakthroughs occur regularly. Although they’re not always front page news, with each major advancement we need to be positioned and ready for the next challenge. As an extension of the Department of Energy’s Office of Science, the Pacific Northwest Site Office provides stewardship to Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), and working in partnership with Battelle ensures the world’s most brilliant minds are supported with cutting-edge, energy friendly facilities, as well as state-of-the-art equipment, instrumentation and capabilities.

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Mission Support Alliance: Supporting Hanford cleanup

Hanford’s evolution over the past 70 years has become a legacy for our community and our nation. MSA is proud to serve the Department of Energy (DOE) and this legacy as we assist in the preservation of its history while we enable cleanup, help reduce the 586-square-mile footprint and support post-cleanup land use.

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Hanford Advisory Board: Welcoming change

For 21 years, the Hanford Advisory Board (HAB) has evolved and matured to successfully meet its responsibility to deliver consensus advice and quality board products to the Tri-Party Agencies (TPA). That success rests securely on the board’s reliance on a set of well-defined values, a committed membership and a consistent respect for the informed recommendations and advice being developed. These essentials, in turn, also encourage the board to remain sensitive to changes in the HAB, the HAB community and the complex demands of Hanford cleanup.

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Environmental Protection Agency: Celebrating Hanford cleanup

I came to Hanford in 1985 on a temporary job working to refuel the N Reactor. My plan was to earn enough money to go back to school, get my counseling credentials and become a high school guidance counselor. My three-month stop has turned into a 30-plus-year adventure, where I’ve seen the Hanford Site shift from a heavy production mission to that of cleanup.

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Richland School District: AVID helps students succeed

Public education is in a significant state of flux. Educators across the United States are dealing with unprecedented levels of poverty. Poverty rates are growing post-recession and, last year, the majority of children attending the nation’s public schools qualified for free and reduced priced lunch. To qualify for free lunch, a family of four must make less than $24,250 per year.

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Visit TRI-CITIES: Future bright for Mid-Columbia

What does the word tourism mean to you? An exotic locale? A theme park resort? In the Tri-City region, tourism means millions of dollars in visitor spending, tax revenues and a positive employment outlook. Tourism is a significant economic and cultural driver for our community, creating an enhanced quality of life for residents.

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HAMMER: Providing training as real as it gets

The Department of Energy (DOE) Richland Operations’ HAMMER Federal Training Center, operated by Mission Support Alliance, achieved tremendous success in 2015 because of our many champions within DOE and Labor. HAMMER’s stalwart advocates have been advancing the message of training to save lives, at Hanford and across the nation.

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EnergySolutions: Delivering important testing programs

In August 2012, EnergySolutions dedicated the EnergySolutions Engineering Laboratory (ESEL) to Washington State University Tri-Cities (WSU-TC). The $3 million, 13,000 square-foot facility meets a growing demand for large-scale testing to support Hanford and other DOE site contractors. The facility, conceived in partnership with the WSU-TC, has stayed busy performing tests since being commissioned.

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CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company: A history-making year ahead for cleanup

This year, the employees of CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company (CH2M) will make major history not only on the Hanford Site, but across the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) complex, as we begin demolition of the Plutonium Finishing Plant (PFP). Our talented employees, who’ve spent years preparing for this endeavor, will allow us to safely and compliantly remove this hazard from the Hanford Site.

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Washington State University Tri-Cities: Growing opportunities for

Within the past year, Washington State University Tri-Cities grew in nearly all areas. This fall, we welcomed a record number of students to our campus and within the last year, our professors secured nearly $30 million in research funding. As the region’s premier university, everything we do is driven by our commitment to dynamic student engagement, research experience and community engagement as we educate students using a polytechnic approach.

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City of West Richland: Future looks bright – and speedy

West Richland has seen the light, and it’s not just because our community was the first one in the nation to implement an innovative, citywide retrofit of its street lights to LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, with adaptor controls. This project is saving 60 percent in electricity costs, and earned our Public Works Department national attention and state awards. Our future — and our streets — look bright as we move into 2016, with an exciting list of projects intended to bring tourists, families, business and fun to town.

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Mid-Columbia Ballet: Increasing community exposure to ballet

The Mid-Columbia Ballet (MCB) continues to grow and prosper as can be evidenced by our sold-out performances of The Nutcracker. This past December, we celebrated our 40th year of bringing this holiday tradition to the Tri-Cities community. During those 40 years, the production has grown from a cast of dozens to one of more than 160 with an additional 300 volunteers working behind the scenes to make this production a magical event.

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Mid-Columbia Mastersingers: New choirs continue to expand reach

During the 30 years the Mid-Columbia Mastersingers have been bringing choral music to the Tri-Cities, the organization has evolved into a cornerstone of the local performing arts community. As the Mastersingers look forward to 2016, our efforts will be driven by our mission to change lives through the power of choral music, and we plan to meet challenges with momentum powered by passion and a spirit of cooperation.

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Tri-Cities Research District: Expanding to accommodate growth

The Tri-Cities Research District (TCRD) in north Richland is growing in size and new activity. Its boundaries have been expanded to include most of the property recently transferred from the Hanford Site (north of Horn Rapid Road, west of Stevens). The district will support the master planning and recruitment efforts that will be led by the port and city during this next year with targets focused on clean energy manufacturing and biosciences.

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Richland Players: Bringing great productions to the Tri-Cities

The Richland Players looks forward to another exciting year of great productions and events in our historic building. We continue to work toward our mission of “Entertainment, Inspiration, and Education — Committed to serving the Mid-Columbia region by entertaining, inspiring, and educating audiences and artists through the shared experience of live theatre.” With that mission in mind, The Richland Players is continually seeking input and ideas from our community.

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City of Richland: Proud to serve Tri-City residents

Growth, economic prosperity and an excellent quality of life remain top of mind for Richland city leaders. We have a lot of exciting opportunities to achieve even more for the city, and our momentum continues to build. Our focus remains on providing a range of services, amenities and experiences for residents, businesses and visitors in our community. From new infrastructure, stellar public safety services and innovative development, we have great expectations for the coming year.

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The Reach: Telling our stories to the world

Four years ago, I was hired as CEO of the Reach project with one goal: to build the Reach and fulfill a decade-long promise to the community. We downsized the project by 75 percent in 2012 and hired a local design/build team on Jan. 7, 2013. Construction began March 7, 2013, and we opened on July 4, 2014. Twelve months later, the Reach celebrated its first anniversary with 870 members, 35,461 visitors and 7,215 students.

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Franklin County Commission: Outlook positive for the coming year

Franklin County enjoys a positive outlook for 2016. Rapid growth continues as residential and commercial enterprises recognize our unique characteristics. In 2015, the county saw growth and progress through 308 land-use applications of various types and sizes, plus 320 building permits with 84 site-built homes, 20 factory-assembled homes, and the balance in residential alterations and accessory buildings (garages/shops) and agricultural, commercial/industrial-related structures.

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Kadlec Regional Medical Center: Ready to meet community’s needs

This year looks to be another milestone year in the history of Kadlec Regional Medical Center. We will celebrate the completion of three significant construction projects: a four-story expansion of the River Pavilion, a 600-space parking garage on the medical center campus and the opening of a new primary care clinic in West Kennewick. We will also honor and recognize the accomplishments of some key Kadlec leaders this year, including retiring chief executive Rand Wortman.

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Columbia Basin College Arts Center: Educating new generation of artists

There is no question in my mind how exciting the arts environment is in the Tri-Cities at this time. As our community continues to grow and thrive, so do initiatives surrounding all artistic endeavors. The visual arts, the performing arts, the literary arts, not to mention the art of wine making, the culinary arts and all forms of artistic design are in periods of growth in the Tri-Cities. The Arts Center at Columbia Basin College is proud to be a catalytic partner in these exciting times of community conversation and initiative.

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Tri-Cities Cancer Center: Exceptional past, extraordinary future

As we broke ground on your Tri-Cities Cancer Center in 1993, I looked forward to the day we closed the doors forever — and I still do. My hope is that cancer will become a chronic disease that people live with as we continue to seek a cure. Until then, your Tri-Cities Cancer Center is here, providing world-class treatment, prevention education, early detection, survivorship and many resources for cancer patients, their families and caregivers.

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TRIDEC: Aiming for more growth in 2016

The Tri-City Development Council is anticipating a brighter 2016 with positive growth in manufacturing, agribusiness, health care and education in the Tri-City region. As the lead economic development organization for Benton and Franklin counties, we are pleased to see the community continuing to grow and outperform the state averages in year over year employment growth.

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TerraGraphics: Making the world a better place to live

One year ago, we introduced TerraGraphics Environmental Engineering to the Tri-City community in this edition of the newspaper. We were relative newcomers to the Tri-Cities and Hanford work, but had just completed our first year as a protégé firm under Washington River Protection Solutions’ (WRPS) mentorship. As a company, we wanted to successfully incorporate our vision of “Exceptional People Improving the Environment” into this new Department of Energy (DOE) work.

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Washington Employment Security Department: Tri-City area one of the fastest growing economies in the state

The Tri-City area remains one of the state’s most vibrant regions, as agriculture, food manufacturing, transportation, warehousing, health care, hospitality and education have pushed economic growth well ahead of most of the state. Economic activity continued to outpace the other areas, with employment rising 5.2 percent in December 2015, on a year-to-year basis, compared with 2.2 percent statewide. While the area is expected to continue its economic growth in 2016, there is lingering caution of a slow-growing resident labor force, with minimal growth of 0.2 percent in December 2015, when compared with the last year’s levels.

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Manhattan Project National Historical Park: Opening park to the world

On Nov. 10, 2015, Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz signed an agreement that officially created the 409th unit of the National Park Service — the Manhattan Project National Historical Park. The park includes facilities and lands at the three original Manhattan Project locations — Los Alamos, N.M.; Oak Ridge, Tenn.; and here at the Hanford Site in Washington. Together, these National Park sites will allow visitors to learn about the top-secret effort to design, test and build the world’s first atomic weapons.

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Dade Moeller: Working together to go further

Since Dade Moeller has been contributing to the Progress edition (this is our fifth year), a number of local economic puzzle pieces have coalesced into a considered, strategic and powerful whole. As reflected in this edition, our community is working effectively and collaboratively toward a sustainable future for the Mid-Columbia region, and several elements have aligned to position us for a great 2016 and beyond. Things are really coming together!

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Washington State Potato Commission: Working to improve trade opportunities

This is a critical year for the Washington potato industry as we look to focus our efforts on strengthening our international trade opportunities. We intend to spend the year educating our members of Congress on how the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) will expand markets, increase sales and create jobs in Washington. The approval of the TPP is critical in maintaining our strength as an economic driver in the Columbia Basin. We will also work to improve the efficiencies of our sea ports, and improve our highways that move our products over the Cascades to our ports of Seattle and Tacoma.

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Port of Kennewick: Revitalizing and redeveloping Kennewick

The Port of Kennewick is an economic development entity focused on growing, improving and sustaining regional employment, tourism and quality of life. One of the port’s roles in economic development can be spearheading projects the private sector is unable or unwilling to undertake on its own. As a result, the port is leading efforts to reclaim and revitalize Kennewick’s historic downtown waterfront, and redeveloping land holdings to benefit the regional economy.

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Washington State Dairy Products Commission: Farmers invest in research and technology to improve production, water and air quality

Yakima Valley and Mid-Columbia dairy farmers have been busy this year. They are investing to improve farm operations with research, sophisticated farm technology and equipment, and outreach with government agencies and policy makers to ensure that decisions are made with current science-based information, about how modern farm practices are improving production, water and air quality.