Monthly News & Updates

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

The Pressing Need For Employment Lands

Last week, the WEA Land Use and Housing Committee welcomed Bret Marchant and Nick Triska from Greater Portland Inc to update us on the status of industrial land readiness and how it impacts our economic competitiveness. The hard truth we re-learned from the presentation is that Oregon has made little progress in addressing the near total absence of land available for employers to capitalize on the growth in manufacturing investment happening across the country. 

While WEA believes it is a hugely positive step that the legislature is having a much needed debate on how to address our housing crisis this month, we also believe we need to ramp up our work to figure out how to truly identify land and make it ready for employers to create more jobs on the westside.

We look forward to diving deeply into this topic at the March Policy Conference with all of you, and also making the necessary connections to transportation and housing investments!

Guest Contributor

Tom Reinhart

Reinhart Strategies

February and March Committee Meetings

Members will share their legislative & ballot measure updates from Portland Community College, Clean Water Services, TriMet, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue and Clackamas County and City of Tigard.

We will also hear from the Home Building Association of Greater Portland for a briefing of the Governor's funding bill for housing and infrastructure.

Register Today

Our Committee Meetings Are Hybrid

Government Relations - Legislative Agendas and Levies

Thursday, February 8

7:30 - 9:00 am

at TVF&R and via Zoom

Transportation with TriMet

Thursday, March 7

7:30 am - 9:00 am

at 3J and via Zoom

Click here to sign up for committee notifications.

WEA Policy Conference - Registration Now Open

We know one thing to be true: we all want safe, healthy communities where we live, work and recreate. Why is it, then, that when it comes to policy making we parse housing, employment and community into three distinct siloes?

In order for our region to realize a vibrant economy that provides a path to the middle class and climate security, we have to lean into the hard conversations. That means more nuanced policy conversations that bring together the public, private and non-profit sectors to work together toward solution.

At this year’s WEA Policy Conference we aim to do just that.

Some of the questions we will be asking include:

  • What does it look like to use manufacturing as a tool to center equity and build the middle class, all while taking care of the environment?
  • How do we help local jurisdictions grow revenue streams so they can build infrastructure needed for developer investment?
  • How do we plan for regional growth that prioritizes manufacturing adjacent business opportunities to both bolster local economies and cut greenhouse gas emissions?

The Policy Conference Panels and Presenters

What Is Infrastructure & How Do We Pay For It?


Nina Carlson

NW Natural

Diane Taniguchi-Dennis

Clean Water Services

Marian Haynes


Oregon's Transportation Investments


Tom Rinehart

Rinehart Strategies

Metro Councilor

Juan Carlos Gonzalez

Oregon Representative

Susan McLain

Financing Tools for Economic Development


Dan Dias

City of Hillsboro

Mayor Lacey Beaty

City of Beaverton

Monique Claiborne

Greater Portland Inc.

Register Today

Westside Scramble

Save the Date for the

Westside Scramble

Monday July 29, 2024

The Reserve Vineyard Golf & Club

Reach Out to Dani for More Information.

Member News & Notes

Hillsboro's State of the City

Many WEA members attended Hillsboro’s State of the City on January 30, Mayor Callaway’s last State of the City. The city’s accomplishments, collaborations and partnerships were celebrated as well as recognition of past leaders and citizens who have continued to make a difference in the city’s progress.

Stay tuned for more upcoming State of the City and County events this spring.

Washington County Vision for Transit

Washington County’s vision for transit over the next 20 years is to serve the travel needs of people who live, work, and visit Washington County and to help more people use transit.

The Vision for Transit online open house and survey is open for public comment until March 1.

Washington County Strategic Plan Feedback

Board of County Commissioners seeks public feedback on Strategic Plan Update 2024-2028


Members of the public are invited to review refreshed language for Washington County’s vision, mission, principles, fundamental approaches and organizational goals.

The Washington County Board of Commissioners is looking to the public for input about revisions to the county government’s 30-year-old strategic plan. A brief online questionnaire will be available until February 16 for community input on the updated 18-page draft document, including modernized language for the organization’s vision and mission statements, guiding principles, fundamental approaches and department-by-department goals. 


Draft Washington County Strategic Plan Update 2024-2028 (PDF 5.2 MB)


County commissioners plan to review public input at their Work Session on February 20 and consider adopting the final version of the updated plan on February 27.

As described in the draft document’s introduction, “The intent of this document is to illuminate the current state and the path forward for Washington County government.” 

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