1. Join Us for Lunch
Thursday, April 22, 2021 | 12:00 - 1:00 pm
At our next Chamber Lunch, we will take a look at how companies and nonprofits are working together to solve community problems. The program will discuss the corporate philanthropy and employee engagement programs championed by leading companies that make our region a better place. The panel will be made up of Joy Stephens with O 2 Joy, Pearl Leung with Amazon, and Paul Lwali with Friends of Youth.
Join us virtually every month through August as regional leaders share insights on a variety of critical topics. Each program will provide an opportunity to engage and collaborate with business leaders during the breakout sessions.
2. King County Meets Phase 3 Requirements
On Monday, April 12, Gov. Jay Inslee announced the status of all the state's counties in the "Healthy Washington" reopening plan. Three of Washington's 39 counties regressed to Phase 2; Pierce, Whitman, and Cowlitz must tighten restrictions again.
King County has met the requirements to stay in Phase 3: COVID cases must stay below 200 per 100,000 people over the previous two-week period, or hospitalizations must be below 5 per 100,000 people over the previous week.
Vaccine distribution is increasing, but local officials continue to urge caution. The basic safety precautions are still in place: wear a mask, stay distant, get tested, and avoid crowds.
3. Keeping People and Goods Moving
Just in time for construction season, Bellevue has approved the Lake Hills Connector as the preferred alternative for a new South Downtown onramp to I-405. We agree; see our letter here. With just over a week to go in Session, transportation leaders have signaled support for the SR 520 interchange at NE 124th, Eastrail, and Mountains to Sound Greenway; now we just need a funding package.
4. For Young Innovators
Young Entrepreneurs Academy
Application Due April 19
Virtual Classes April 26 - May 15
We are happy to offer another session of all-virtual Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!). The class will be an accelerated program that will take place for three weeks beginning April 26th. The YEA! program teaches middle and high school students how to start and run their own real businesses and social movements. Students are guided through each step of starting an enterprise, from brainstorming the idea to pitching their business plan to investors.
5. Hazard Pay Hero
A local grocery store owner surprised his employees with an unexpected act of kindness. Despite not being impacted by the Seattle City Council policy, Ballinger Thriftway owner David Clemmer made the decision to give his employees a temporary $4 an hour increase in pay, dated back to January 31, 2021.
In a letter posted in their breakroom, Clemmer said, “You really all should consider yourselves heroic for keeping our neighbor fed during the pandemic. I deeply appreciate everyone’s efforts during this difficult season.”
The Bellevue Chamber's lobbyist in Olympia, Lyset Cadena, provides a weekly report covering priority areas such as Covid recovery, transportation, and housing, as well as bill statuses.