Wednesday, June 22, 2022
Important News for You
Chamber Merger Task Force members and Chamber Staff (L to R): Irene Moyer, Director of Member Relations; John Morrissey, Bremerton Board Chairman; Susan Larsen, Bremerton and Silverdale Member; David Emmons, President/CEO; Kathleen Arndt, Silverdale Board; Tiffany DeSaveur, Bremerton Board; and Dave Montoure, Silverdale Board Chairman.
Bremerton and Silverdale Chambers Merge to Become the Greater Kitsap Chamber
The Boards of Directors for the Bremerton and Silverdale Chambers of Commerce met on Friday, June 17, 2022, to approve the final details of their planned merger. Beginning July 1, 2022, the two Chambers will move forward under the name of the Greater Kitsap Chamber. The new Chamber will be more than 600 members strong and is the largest Chamber on the Kitsap Peninsula.

Chamber News
Check out and like the
Save-the-Date: Education Carnival
Wednesday, July 27, 2022, 11:30 am
Registration Opens July 5, 2022!
Renew your membership today to ensure your place as a Charter Member of the Greater Kitsap Chamber! Questions about when to renew or how to upgrade your membership? Contact Irene now!
Save-the Date: Eggs & Issues
Primary Election Edition
Sponsorship information coming soon!
Join These Businesses in Our Destination Guide
We've got some great local businesses showcased in our 2022 Destination Guide - act now to join them in our signature publication piece for those traveling to the Kitsap Peninsula. The Admiral Theatre, Ahoy Kitsap, Axe & Arrow Gastropub, Bremerton WestSound Symphony, Centering Massage, Kitsap RV, Sea Discovery Center, Silverdale Whaling Days, The Point Casino & Hotel and University of Massachusetts Global are just some of the businesses taking advantage of this great opportunity.

Now is the time to reserve space - it's fast and easy, with our partners at Lunar Cow designing your ads if needed at no extra cost! Enjoy great bang for your buck with 10,000 printed copies of this publication distributed in the best locations (including 7,500 on WSDOT ferries) to help drive traffic to our advertisers, and our digital GoGuide® will allow you to reach thousands more. Your advertisement in the digital GoGuide® will be linked to your website, giving readers one-click access to your business.
As a reminder of our holiday publication schedule, this week's
"Community Connections" is the only e-newsletter we will be publishing
this week. Additionally, stay tuned for next week's special July 4th Edition, publishing on Wednesday, June 29th, with all the holiday activities you,
your business and your family can find around Kitsap County!
Member News
New Members - Welcome to the Chamber!
AWB Hosts Kitsap Meeting
Monday, June 27, 2022, 12:00 pm
AWB leaders will hit the road this summer to hear directly from employers about the challenges and opportunities facing the business community. The Statewide Outreach Tour is headed to 10 cities in June and July to collect employer input. This information will help AWB better advocate for Washington employers with lawmakers in both Olympia and Washington, D.C.

The tour will be led by AWB President Kris Johnson and includes AWB Vice President of Government Affairs Dave Mastin and the Government Affairs policy team. The first stop is scheduled for Spokane on June 21 and the last one is in Vancouver on July 15.

Each of these events is free and food is provided. Registration is required. Sign up today and make your voice heard. Contact Bonnie Millikan with questions at or 360.943.1600. 
Celebrate Pride Month: Kitsap Regional Library
Connect to resources, reading lists and upcoming events and classes celebrating Pride month. Stop by your favorite branch in June to pick up a limited-edition commemorative Pride library card.

Do you have news you'd like to share about your business or organization?
We'd love to share! Please send information to Irene at the Chamber!

Member Spotlight
Employment Agencies of Kitsap County
For our June Members of the Month, we have chosen several local employment and staffing agencies dedicated to matching employers with skilled employees. Given the nationwide worker shortage across industries, agencies like the ones we profile this month are poised to help your business find the workers you need to succeed!

West Sound Workforce

West Sound Workforce brings together talented people and top companies throughout the Puget Sound region. We provide temporary staffing services, temp-to-hire services, direct hire recruiting, and HR services. Local jobs mean a shorter commute and more time for you. As a top recruiting agency in the Pacific Northwest, we can assist and advise with any aspect of your hiring or management challenges.

Job seekers can find opportunities in the South Sound and Kitsap Peninsula, from Seattle to Olympia, Tacoma to Port Orchard as well as Bremerton, Silverdale, Poulsbo, Bainbridge Island, Kingston and beyond.

18819 3rd Avenue, Suite 110
Poulsbo, WA 98370
(360) 394-1882
Education Committee
Member Education & Training Resources
Getting the Most from Your Member Portal
What happens next with the Chamber website and your membership directory listing?

Now that the official merger between the Silverdale and Bremerton Chambers is just a few weeks away, you may have questions about your online membership directory listing for your business. What happens to your listing?

In short - nothing! We are working directly with Chamber Master and GrowthZone, the company that powers our Chamber database and your records with us. In the coming weeks, the two Chamber databases will become one, and we will retain members records from all of our active members from both Chambers. What you can do to make this transition seamless is easy - make sure your directory listing is as up-to-date as you can make it! Do you have a new logo but haven't added it to your listing yet? Upload that now! Changing your hours for summer? List those on your directory page, too. All of your information will remain in place as we combine these databases and launch the new website for the Greater Kitsap Chamber.

Questions or need assistance making changes to your directory listing? Contact Joe Barboza, Operations Manager, for the Greater Kitsap Chamber and he can help you out!
AWB Hosts Child Care Forum
Wednesday, June 29, 2022, 10:00 am
Join AWB and other partners on June 29 to explore how employers can support childcare for their employees.

During this workshop, you will learn about:
  • The positive impact of employer-supported childcare and family-friendly policies
  • Tangible ways that businesses can support working parents
  • The experiences of Washington business leaders with family-friendly policies
  • The technical assistance supports that state agencies can offer to employers

We will also facilitate small group discussions to learn more about the support and assistance businesses would need in order to implement family-friendly policies.
Save-the-Date: July 12, 2022, 8:00 am
"Keys to Success: Making Your First Million"
Join us from 7:30am to 8:00am for registration, business to business networking with coffee and baked goods.

Program will start at 8:00am to 9:30am with our three panelists.

Key take-aways:
  • How each panelist made it to their first million
  • The skills and habits to develop to succeed
  • Tactics you can use to begin your path
Tax Essentials for New and
Existing Business Owners
Thursday, June 23, 2022, 9:00 am
Paying taxes is inevitable. But reporting and paying the right amount of taxes timely is the goal you want to achieve to give you peace of mind and allow you to focus on more important areas, like driving your business forward.

This 2.5-hour workshop will help you learn about:

  • Federal taxes imposed on your business.
  • Federal taxes you need to report and pay on amounts paid to your employees.
  • Federal taxes you need to report and pay based on your business’s profits.
  • Washington taxes imposed on your business and employees.
  • City and local taxes imposed on your business.
  • Record keeping requirements to ensure you are ready for that taxing agency audit.

Workshop Fee: $50
Tax Savings Strategies for Small Businesses
Tuesday, June 28, 2022, 1:00 pm
This workshop focuses on the Federal tax saving strategies that work best for small businesses, which are:

  • Electing S-Corporation status with the IRS.
  • Maximizing the deduction for business use of the home.
  • Demonstrating two ways you can compute the deduction for business use of personal vehicle.
  • Providing you examples of 7 different retirement plans and showing you which one is best for you.
  • Describing how to maximize the benefits of health savings accounts.
  • Show you the difference between smart equipment purchases and not-so-smart ones for maximizing the tax benefit.
  • Explain the difference between cash versus accrual accounting and let you know which is better for you.
  • And much, much more!

Workshop Fee: $55
Government Affairs Committee
Attorney General Hosts Organized Retail Crime Task Force Kick-Off Meeting
The Office of the Attorney General will be hosting the Organized Retail Crime Task Force kick-off meeting on July 7, 2022, from 10:00am to 2:00pm. If you want to attend the meeting in person or remotely, RSVP online by Friday, July 1.

This first statewide Organized Retail Crime Task Force meeting aims to improve coordination around the challenge of organized retail crime in Washington State.

The meeting will be held at the Washington State Attorney General’s Office at 800 5th Ave, Seattle, WA 98104, 20th Floor, and via Zoom as a remote video conference. Registered in-person attendees will be required to:

  • Show proof of full vaccination and booster
  • Complete a wellness screening.
Additional details are available on the registration page.
Business News & Resources
US Chamber Special Report of Small
Business & LGBTQ+ Inclusion
A new report from MetLife and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on small businesses and LGBTQ+ inclusivity shows that a majority of small business owners in America feel it is important to be inclusive to the LGBTQ+ community. More than eight in 10 small business owners say that it is important to provide an inclusive culture for customers and guests. Younger-owned small businesses are especially likely to believe in the importance of inclusion and allyship. 
Ready for Business Fund: Round 3
Application Deadline: Sunday, June 26, 2022
The Ready for Business Fund was established to help level the playing field for communities that have been historically marginalized. Priority will be given to small businesses within the communities that historically have less impact to resources through entrepreneurship and are impacted by systemic barriers, including those owned by LGBTQ+ people; Black, Indigenous, and People of Color; and women, as well as businesses located in rural areas.

Businesses who are selected for a grant will receive a $2,500 cash grant and wrap-around services including GSBA membership, technical support, marketing, and consulting. This grant does not have to be repaid and can be used for any purpose to help the business in its resiliency.

The third round of applications is now open and will close on Sunday, June 26th, 2022.
Inclusive Backing Program: Round 4
Application Deadline: Thursday, June 30, 2022
The Inclusive Backing program builds on American Express' ongoing "Backing Small" initiative to provide economically vulnerable small businesses with financial support and other resources to address their critical needs and challenges.

These $5,000 grants can be used for anything from physical improvements to the business space to meet relevant reopening requirements brought on by COVID-19 to payroll and other operating expenses.

The fourth grant cycle is open to eligible small business owners who identify as Native or Indigenous, Hispanic or Latinx, LGBTQ+ or as immigrants, refugees or forcibly displaced.
Washington Plastic Bag Ban Update
Starting July 1, 2022, the reusable plastic bag recycled content requirement will increase from 20% to 40%.

It has now been over eight months since Washington’s Single-Use Plastic Bag Ban went into effect, and the ban is quickly approaching its next milestone. Beginning July 1, 2022, the post-consumer recycled content percentage for reusable plastic carryout bags increases from 20% to 40%.

The Department of Ecology continues to offer technical assistance and education to businesses about the law to help further its implementation.

The Ecology Bag Ban Website contains a link to download our Bag Ban Outreach Toolkit. The toolkit contains detailed flyers to educate businesses and their staff on the law's details, point of sale signs for communicating the requirements to customers, and Bring Your Own Bag (BYOB) signage to encourage customers to bring their own reusable bags. 
Coming Soon - Working WA Grants: Round 5
The Washington State Legislature has allocated a new round of grant funding for small businesses affected by the pandemic. $70 million was appropriated by the legislature for the next round of Working Washington Grants: Round 5, with $45 million of the appropriation directed to eligible businesses and nonprofit organizations in the arts, heritage, and science sectors, including those that operate live entertainment venues. $25 million will be directed at most other sectors, including hospitality, fitness and personal services.

Eligible applicants must meet the following criteria, with additional details to be shared in the coming weeks:

  • Active for-profit or non-profit business or organization, with a UBI or EIN number, and physically located in Washington State.
  • Be able to demonstrate financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak
  • Have been in operation prior to December 31, 2020
  • Have not reported annual gross receipts of more than $5,000,000 in calendar year 2019
  • Minimum total revenues of at least $10,000 in 2019 or 2020.
  • Generates at least 51% of revenue in Washington State
  • Have not permanently closed or intend to permanently close in 2022
  • Applicants must apply for one business only. Those with multiple entities should apply on behalf of their largest or most impacted business.
  • Have expenses that are necessary to continue business operations and the expense is not a federal, state, or local tax, fee, license, or other government revenue
  • Have experienced a reduction in business income or activity related to COVID-19 or as a result of state or local COVID-19 related public health measures
  • Adherence to all required COVID-19 public health measures
  • Self-attest that the expense is not funded by any other government or private entity
Kitsap County News
E.coli levels have returned to a level considered safe for human contact. 

The Kitsap Public Health District has reopened the swimming beach at Island Lake County Park.

The beach was closed on June 10 due to high levels of E. coli bacteria in the water. Results from follow-up testing show that E.coli levels at the beach have returned to a level considered safe for human contact. 

Those visiting any swimming beach should be aware that conditions at swimming beaches can change quickly and frequently. Swimmers should follow these tips for healthy and safe swimming.  
Photos: Meegan M. Reid/KITSAP SUN
Kitsap's Juneteenth Freedom Festival
Celebrates 20th Anniversary
Originally published in the Kitsap Sun, June 18, 2022

Kitsap’s Juneteenth Freedom Festival hit 20 years old on Saturday.

Organizers believe the event to be one of the state’s oldest commemorations of the end of slavery. On Saturday morning, it was a younger generation helping to lead a march and celebration that began at the Norm Dicks Government and snaked its way through Bremerton to Evergreen Rotary Park with chants and cheers.

Karen Vargas, a prominent activist in Kitsap’s Black community, hailed youths like 17-year-old Izaya Brown, who are stepping forward to carry on work on social issues.

“This next generation, they’re gonna bring us through,” she said.

The Kitsap Road Report is updated each week. This latest update was released on June 17, 2022.
Intermittent road closures on Bay Shore Drive NW, NW Byron Street and Washington Avenue NW for Sewer/Stormwater/Road improvement project. 

Expect moderate delays on Central Valley Road NE between NE Fairground Rd and Foster Rd NE for a non-motorized improvements project. Single lane alternating closures with traffic control in place. This project is anticipated to complete by Fall of 2022. For more information visit the project page

Expect moderate delays on Anderson Hill Rd NW at the intersection with Old Frontier NW and Provost Road NW for intersection improvement project. This project is scheduled to be completed in Winter of 2022. For more information visit the project page

Daytime road closure for private development work:

  • Blaine Ave NW between NW Bucklin Hill and Ridgetop Blvd NW (TU-FR)

WSDOT Project Alert: Construction crews are working on the SR3 Chico Creek fish barrier removal project. Drivers traveling southbound who exit onto Chico Way NW near Bremerton will not be able to turn left toward Silverdale. All travelers will turn right towards Bremerton. This traffic change will be in place through fall 2023. For details and to sign up for WSDOT electronic updates, visit the WSDOT Project Page.
COVID-19 Updates & Resources
US Opens COVID Vaccines for Children Under 5
The Associated Press, June 18, 2022

The U.S. on Saturday opened COVID-19 vaccines to infants, toddlers and preschoolers.

The shots will become available this week, expanding the nation’s vaccination campaign to children as young as 6 months.

Advisers to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended the vaccines for the littlest children, and the final signoff came hours later from Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the agency’s director.

“We know millions of parents and caregivers are eager to get their young children vaccinated, and with today’s decision, they can,” Walensky said in a statement.

COVID-19 Vaccine & Testing Resources
Kitsap County Health District is now posting a regularly updated list of COVID-19 vaccine providers in Kitsap County. This list can be found here.

Community Information
Planet Fitness Celebrates Grand Re-Opening
Wednesday, June 29, 2022, 4:00 pm
Eligible Donors Urged to Give Blood as
National Blood Shortage Continues
The Washington State Department of Health (DOH), in partnership with the Washington State Blood Coalition, is encouraging eligible donors to give blood this summer.

“Blood donations usually start to drop around this time of year due to summer schedule and vacations,” said Curt Bailey, President and Chief Executive Officer, Bloodworks Northwest. “But we need everyone’s help to keep our blood supply stable for those who need it.”

The call for donations this summer is especially urgent due to an ongoing nationwide blood shortage. Earlier this year the American Red Cross announced a blood crisis, citing its worst blood shortage in over a decade. Governor Jay Inslee and Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, Secretary of Health, have urged people in Washington to donate blood if able to do so.

“Donating blood is a safe activity that can save lives,” said Andrew Rose, COVID-19 Incident Commander, Washington State Department of Health, whose team in the Office of Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response meets regularly with local blood centers to monitor safety and supply. All types of blood are needed for cancer treatment, trauma cases, and many other situations. A donation appointment usually takes less than an hour and includes a donor screening process to evaluate each person’s temperature, current health and travel history. Actual donation time is about 10 minutes.

“Our primary focus is to ensure a safe and reliable blood supply in our community,” says Angel Montes, Regional Donor Services Executive, American Red Cross, explaining the blood center coalition’s call to action. Christine Swinehart, Executive Director, Cascade Regional Blood Services, added, “We know that people care and will step up when they learn how important the need is. We’re here to make the process as easy as possible.”

More information about donating blood, including how to schedule an appointment and updates related to COVID-19, is available from local blood centers:

Take Steps Now to Prepare for
Summer Wildfire Smoke
Air pollution caused by wildfire smoke is an increasingly common health concern in the Pacific Northwest.

While wildfires most often occur in mid to late summer, you can take steps now prepare your household and workplace for unhealthy air quality. Keep in mind that some supplies, such as fans, filters, and air conditioners, could be more difficult to obtain during summer months. 
Silverdale Visitor Center
Coming Soon - Mark Your Calendars!
Wednesdays, July 27 through August 24, 2022
Watch for sponsorship information coming soon!
Bremerton Bridge Blast
Saturday, June 25, 2022
Day trip from Silverdale:
Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors
Now through July 3, 2022, Bloedel Reserve
June 16 through July 3, 7:00 pm

Join BPA in the meadowlands of Bloedel Reserve for the fantastic romp that is Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors

One of Shakespeare's early plays, The Comedy of Errors is his shortest and most farcical comedy, with a major part of the humor coming from slapstick and mistaken identity involving 2 sets of identical twins, in addition to puns and word play. 
Stay in the know with what's happening for events in Central Kitsap by checking out and liking Silverdale Visitor Center on Facebook!
Contact Us
Have something to share? CLICK HERE to submit stories and
events for Tuesday's Community Connections!
David Emmons
Irene Moyer
Director of Member Relations
Joe Barboza
Operations Manager
Kate Cofer
Membership Coordinator
Brenda Kelley
Tourism Coordinator