Tuesday, March 29, 2022
Important News for You
Tickets on Sale Now for April Gala
Thursday, April 21, 2022
Join us as we honor the businesses, organizations and individuals who made 2021 a great year to live and work in Central Kitsap. Finalists will be announced April 6th with awards handed out on April 21st at the Kitsap Golf & Country Club.

Natalie E. Bryson Pioneer Business of the Year
Business of the Year
Dr. Glen Gordon New Business of the Year
Hospitality Business of the Year
Employer of the Year
Nonprofit of the Year
Citizen of the Year
Gala Sponsorships Still Available

The 2022 Business Awards Gala serves as the Chamber's primary fundraising event for the entire year - it allows us to honor local businesses, organizations and individuals who are making a real difference in our community. Join us as a sponsor as we recognize your business and others at the 2022 Business Awards Gala!
Click HERE to download information.
Please contact David with questions or to become a sponsor now!
Chamber News
Check out and like the
SPECIAL EVENT: Coffee with the Commissioner
Thursday, April 7, 2022, 8:00 am
Please join the Bremerton and Silverdale Chambers as we host "Coffee with the Commissioner" on Thursday, April 7th. Commissioner Ed Wolfe will be sharing a State of the County update and will be discussing important issues for Central Kitsap businesses including: homelessness, police reform, affordable housing and Kitsap County permitting.


Coffee with the Commissioner
@ McCloud's Grill House
Bremerton, WA

This is a free event for all
Chamber members!
Chamber Members Gather for Return to
In-Person Luncheons & Networking
We enjoyed the company of more than 100 Chamber members and guests for our first in-person luncheon of 2022 last week! Seventeen new members were introduced, and we raised over $400 for the Chamber Scholarship Fund benefitting Central Kitsap students.
Join us for the Grand Opening of the new Silverdale branch! Pick up a limited-edition commemorative library card* and enjoy the festivities. Music, tours and activities will be offered throughout the day.  
10 a.m. - Live Music, Remarks & Ribbon Tying Ceremony 
The new library in Silverdale is a gift for our community, from our community and was only possible through the support of donors, volunteers and community partners. A special thank you to our many donors, the Central Kitsap School District, Kitsap Regional Library Foundation and the Friends of the Silverdale Library. 

*Please make sure to bring a current picture ID if you would like a new library card.
Member News
New Members - Welcome to the Chamber!
Member of the Month:
Port Madison Enterprises
Jay Mills, Port Madison Enterprises Ambassador, accepts the March Member of the Month award from Silverdale Chamber President/CEO, David Emmons, and Silverdale Board Chairman, Dave Montoure. Port Madison Enterprises is the second-largest private employer in the greater Kitsap area.
Suquamish Tribe Elects Leaders to Tribal Council
Suquamish Tribal citizens voted to fill two Tribal Council positions up for election this year at the Tribe’s annual General Council gathering, which took place March 19 and 20, 2022.

Josh Bagley was elected Tribal Council vice chair and Denita Holmes was elected treasurer. Josh Bagley, a former geoduck diver, is president of the Suquamish Seafoods Board and vice chair of the Suquamish Tribal Gaming Commission. Denita Holmes is a teacher at Chief Kitsap Academy, a former member of the Suquamish Museum Board and an artist.

Outgoing vice chair Wayne George and treasurer, Robin LW Sigo, were thanked by fellow Council members, and their services acknowledged by Tribal members.

KEDA Annual Meeting & Economic Preview
Wednesday, March 30, 2022, 9:30 am
Final Call for Leadership Kitsap Class of 2023
Applications Due April 4th
GSBA Tourism Roundtable: Kitsap County
Wednesday, April 6, 2022, 9:00 am
This roundtable welcomes community leaders and small business owners across Kitsap County to discuss needs for local small businesses, the tourism and hospitality industry, and LGBTQ+ community. Our discussion will center on building bridges for Kitsap County's tourism industry, working together for our collective economic recovery, attracting tourists from Seattle and beyond, and expanding these opportunities throughout the County - all through a lens of inclusivity and equity.

Our Roundtable Facilitators:
  • Ilona Lohrey (she/her), GSBA VP of Membership & Programs
  • Rachael Brister (she/her), Owner of RCB Communications, specializing in connecting your business to the LGBTQ+ community
  • Rob Leslie (he/him), Director of Partnership & Destination Services at Visit Seattle
This event is proudly presented in partnership with GSBA, Washington's LGBTQ+ and allied chamber; Visit Bainbridge Island; Bainbridge Island Chamber of Commerce; Bainbridge Island Downtown Association; Silverdale Chamber of Commerce; Bremerton Chamber of Commerce; and South Kitsap Chamber of Commerce.

Thank you to our Host Sponsor, Suquamish Clearwater Casino!
P5 Photography Offers Headshot Sessions
April 8-9, 2022

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
Puget Sound Energy
During a more than 145-year history of service, one thing has remained constant: PSE's focus on safe, reliable, affordable energy service. Coupled with their commitment to great customer service and helping to make communities better places to live and work, PSE stands as one of our pillar businesses here in Kitsap County. We are proud to honor their almost 50-year membership with the Silverdale Chamber as our spotlight business!
Education Committee
Kitsap Business Forum
Tuesday, April 12, 2022, 8:00 am
Member Education & Training Resources
WA State Attorney General Alerts
of Scams Targeting Small Business Owners
Attorney General Bob Ferguson's office alerted Washingtonians on Tuesday about scammers targeting new business owners, sending hundreds of thousands of deceptive letters into the state. The letters deceptively appear to originate from the government, and demand payment for documents that should be free, or are available for a much lower price from the legitimate agency. About 15,000 Washington businesses have already fallen victim, paying more than $1.2 million.

Any Washingtonians who received letters from WA Certificate Service or Labor Poster Compliance asking them to pay for either a Certificate of Status, Certificate of Existence or “labor law poster” should contact the Attorney General’s Office immediately.

You can file a complaint online at atg.wa.gov/file-complaint or call the office toll-free at 1-800-551-4636.

Clean Buildings Accelerator Virtual Chat
Tuesday, March 29, 2022, 1:00 pm
The new WA State Clean Buildings Law (HB1257) is going to affect many building owners in Kitsap County and thousands of PSE customers are going to need to comply with this new building performance law. PSE is trying to get the word out to folks about a no-cost training offered through their Clean Buildings Accelerator program that helps building owners with buildings 50,000 sq ft and up develop their compliance strategy for the law. Common buildings that need to comply include schools, grocery stores, gyms, community centers, movie theatres, malls, retail stores, offices, hospitals, etc.

PSE would like to share resources with local businesses so that they are aware of what is available when looking for help with Law compliance. PSE is also closely following legislation that has gone to the desk of the governor as SB5722 which would require benchmarking and energy planning for buildings as small as 20,000 sq ft. 
Supporting Women-Led Businesses
Why They Are Critical to America's Economic Recovery
Published in Inc., from Natalie Madeira Cofield, Assistant Administrator, SBA

As we celebrate Women's History Month, it is important to take a step back and admire how far women entrepreneurs have come. In 2019, women-owned businesses employed more than 10 million workers and accumulated $1.8 trillion in profit. Today, more Americans are opening new businesses at a record rate -- there were 5.4 million new business applications last year alone. We know that women-owned businesses are a key driver of this growth, especially businesses owned by minority women.

While there has been historic economic growth, there is still work to do. As an entrepreneur myself, I know all too well the challenges that come with running a business and how far away help may seem. With the pandemic, it has been especially difficult for many women entrepreneurs. In many ways, it has exacerbated pre-existing inequities in our economy, which caused women entrepreneurs to continue to trail men in business ownership. In 2019, 20 percent of all employer firms were women-owned businesses. Women business owners in all demographic groups continue to be underrepresented compared with male business owners.

What to Know Before You Hire
or Fire Your First Employee
Tuesday, March 29, 2022, 9:00 am
Are you thinking about hiring your first employee? Do you already have several on your payroll? This workshop will help you navigate the employment relationship from start to finish so you can best understand how local, state and federal employment laws impact your growing business.

This comprehensive workshop takes you through the lifecycle from hiring to firing, including what to beforehand and afterwards. 

  • What to Do Before Hiring
  • Process of Hiring an Employee
  • Being an Employer
  • Managing Effectively Employee Problems
  • Important Employment Laws
 
You will leave the workshop with a roadmap of what you need to do to minimize your legal risks involved with having employees. You will also leave with a framework to provide your employees with a quality work environment so that you have satisfied workers.

Workshop Fee: $55
Government Affairs Committee
23rd District Legislative News from Representative Tarra Simmons
The Legislature has adjourned sine die for the year! This year, in addition to passing supplemental operating, capital, and transportation budgets, we passed a new 16-year, $17 billion transportation package, Move Ahead Washington. This transportation package delivers historic investments to preserve our roads, reduce carbon emissions, and provide safe, accessible, and affordable options to get around. Importantly, it also provides $1.3 billion to build 4 new hybrid-electric ferries, $193 million to electrify and retrofit two older ferries, and an additional $510 million to improve ferry operations. Move Ahead Washington also provides funds to provide free transit service (including ferries!) for children under the age of 18. Finally, it does all of this without raising the gas tax!

Business News & Resources
Working Washington 5 Grants Coming Soon
The 2022 Legislature allocated $45 million dollars for eligible businesses and nonprofit organizations in the arts, heritage, and science sectors, including those that operate live entertainment venues.
 
Commerce is currently working on this new program so that it aligns with the legislation. We will have more information about the new program on this site by Spring 2022. 

OC Looking for Employers to
Participate in Annual Job Fair
Wednesday, May 4, 2022, 12:00 - 3:00 pm
Olympic College is hosting their 2022 Job Fair on Wednesday, May 4th from 12:00 to 3:00pm in Building 10 – Bremer Student Center.

Basic registration is $150 which includes a 6- or 8-foot table, two chairs, and a white tablecloth. You will also receive a light lunch and a variety of advertising in the community and on campus.

You may also choose additional advertising in the Career Center Job Fair Booklet in $25 increments, according to the size of the ad.

Registration is through Eventbrite. Please follow the button below to register your business. When selecting your ticket type, choose “Employer Table.” You may then expand the add-ons section to select an advertising option if you’re interested in advertising in our Job Fair Booklet. 
Businesses Continue to Receive Warnings on Cybersecurity: Are You Prepared?
From the Kitsap SBDC

Small businesses are attractive targets because small businesses have information that cybercriminals want! Small businesses typically lack the security infrastructure of larger businesses. Many small business owners feel their business are vulnerable but don’t know where to begin.
 
Start by learning about common cyber threats, understanding where your business is vulnerable, and taking steps to improve your cybersecurity.

Next, follow up with some more in-depth information from WaTech's Office of Cybersecurity, the SBA and CISA.

Then, pick up the SBDC The Washington Small Business Development Center Cybersecurity Toolkit and workbook and get started securing your data!
 
Visit the WSBDC Protect your business page to learn more and to get access to more security tools and reports.
How to Get Started with TikTok Marketing
Have you been wondering how to jump start your brand's presence on that elusive social platform all the kids are using? Or how some startups seem to crack the code to online engagement while others struggle and sink?
 
According to Performance Marketing contributor Jonathan Martinez, TikTok isn’t just becoming a huge force in paid acquisition —it’s already there. Including it as a part of your long-term plan will have you ahead of the competition. Read more in AdWeek's marketing special
Earned Income Tax Credit:
What You Need to Know

The Earned Income Tax Credit can provide much-needed relief for working families and small businesses. But too many employees don't know about the credit or don't remember to claim it on their tax returns. That's why today we're sharing a toolkit for business owners, employees, and self-employed workers to better understand and utilize this crucial tool, which provides families with a financial boost while growing the local economy and reducing poverty rates.
Kitsap County News
County Parks Become More Accessible
Kitsap County parks, trails and beaches just got more accessible. The Kitsap County Accessible Communities Advisory Committee is excited to announce a partnership with Bainbridge Island Parks and Recreation District to provide two Hippocampe All-Terrain Wheelchairs to borrow at no charge with a small refundable damage deposit. The chairs can be transported to other areas of the county.

These lightweight, durable chairs are designed to tackle sand, grass, dirt, rocks, roots, and just about any other surface to allow wheelchair users access to places classic wheelchairs wouldn’t dare to go. They don’t float but can be used to wade into the water. With specialized wheels and attachments that fit a variety of needs, the chairs are ready for adventure. They are stored disassembled in a bag for easy transport and quick to assemble.

There is one medium and one large chair available. The medium chair fits people 4’7” to 5’7” and the large chair fits those 5’7” to 6’1”; both support individuals up to 285 pounds.

For more information or to reserve a chair, contact Outdoor Program Manager Nick Prevo at (206) 842-5661 ext. 115 or nickp@biparks.org and visit the Bainbridge Island Parks Gearbank at https://biparks.org/gearbank/.
The Kitsap Road Report is updated each week. This latest update was released on March 25, 2022.
Intermittent road closures on Bay Shore Drive NW and Washington Avenue NW for Sewer/Stormwater/Road improvement project. 

Crews are doing various maintenance activities at the locations listed below. Expect moderate delays between 5 and 10 minutes:

  • Marwood Development Including Marlene, Tate and Colby (MO)
  • NE Steele Creek Drive entire length (TU-WE)
  • Harbel Drive NE entire length (TH-FR)

WSDOT Project Alert: Construction crews working on the SR3 Chico Creek fish barrier removal project. Temporary speed limit reduction to 45mph in both directions on SR3 along one-mile section for the duration of the project. For details and to sign up for WSDOT electronic updates, visit the WSDOT Project Page.
COVID-19 Updates & Resources
Get Free At-Home COVID-19 Tests
Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order 4 free at-home COVID-19 tests. If you haven't already, order yours today. If you've already received an initial order, your household can now order an additional set of 4 tests beginning last week.

Need help placing an order for your at-home tests? Call 1-800-232-0233 (TTY 1-888-720-7489)
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.

Kitsap Public Health District COVID-19 vaccination clinics are now walk-up only. Please review our clinic calendar and stop by a clinic at a time that works best for you. Advance appointments are no longer available.
Community Information
Central Kitsap School Board Elects
Drayton Jackson as New President
Published in the Kitsap Sun, March 24, 2022

Drayton Jackson assumed the role of Central Kitsap School Board president Wednesday evening as part of a reorganization triggered by director Jeanie Schulze's decision to step from her role as president of the five-member board.

Schulze did not attend Wednesday's regular meeting of the school board, which saw directors and community members gather in-person at Central Kitsap School District's Teaching and Learning Center at Barker Creek. Jackson noted that Schulze — a board member since 2013 — stepped down as president because of "health reasons."

National Multiple Sclerosis Society
Seeking Volunteers for Local Event
April 30, 2022
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society is looking for community support with 30 volunteers to help with the Walk MS Silverdale 2022 event. The event will be held on April 30th at the Kitsap Mall. All proceeds will go towards research and services for people living with Multiple Sclerosis.

Local students in need of service hours are welcome to volunteer.
Silverdale Visitor Center
Easter Bunny Visits Kitsap Mall
March 26 - April 16, 2022
Kitsap Mall is playing host to the Easter Bunny this year, with photos available now!

Monday – Thursday
12 pm to 7 pm

Friday – Saturday
11 am to 8 pm

Sundays
12 pm to 6 pm
Admiral Theatre Presents: The British Invasion
Saturday, April 2, 2022, 7:30 pm
Dance Arts Theatre Presents: "Wizard of Oz"
April 23-24, 2022
Contact Us
Have something to share? CLICK HERE to submit stories and
events for Tuesday's Community Connections!
360-692-6800
David Emmons
President/CEO
Irene Moyer
Director of Member Relations
Brenda Kelley
Tourism Coordinator