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Habitat for Humanity completes 800,000th house, locally celebrates new director, new store, new home

On Nov. 6, 2013, Habitat celebrated its 800,000th house built, rehabilitated and repaired. The milestone was marked as Habitat announced that — for the first time in the organization’s history — more than 100,000 families had been served in a single fiscal year. That means, thanks to you, we’ve helped an estimated 4 million people around the world since 1976.

Locally, Habitat for Humanity of Grays Harbor Executive Director Larry Burgher tells us “We are so proud of this accomplishment and looking forward to reaching the goal of 1 MILLION homes by 2015!

Our intention is to build/rehab 3 or more homes in 2014 so Grays Harbor will contribute to this goal! – Larry Burgher, Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity of Grays Harbor

Celebrating a little themselves, their new executive director Larry Burgher said last month they cut the ribbon on a new location at 3005 Simpson Ave in Hoquiam, they launched a new website at http://www.graysharborhabitat.com/ and they are near completion on the Coolidge street house in Aberdeen.

Port of Grays Harbor purchases NewWood Corp assets at Satsop Business Park

ELMA, Wash. – Recognizing the value of manufacturing jobs to the region’s economy, the Port of Grays Harbor Commissioners considered an innovative approach to revitalizing a shuttered manufacturing facility at Satsop Business Park during a special meeting Tuesday, November 5th.

The Port Commission granted Executive Director, Gary Nelson, authority to execute a $1.3 million Promissory Note and enter into an agreement with receiver Pivotal Solutions to purchase the assets of the NewWood Facility.

NewWood Corporation, which has been in receivership since November 2012, includes equipment assets that are located in a Port-owned building. In addition, the assets include intellectual property on the process of turning scrap plastics into usable building material. Attempts to find an operator to assume the lease and purchase the assets have been unsuccessful thus far but the latest two-fold approach may solve both issues.

“After analyzing the risk of the purchase of the assets against the rewards should we succeed in finding a user for the site, my fellow Commissioners and I felt the jobs and economic activity created, hedged against the liquidation value of the equipment, mitigated any financial risk to the Port,” explained Port Commission President Chuck Caldwell. “The facility is the centerpiece of the Satsop Business Park and the reward of establishing a West Coast manufacturing and distribution hub of a sustainable, innovative recycled product will be jobs for our citizens and increased economic opportunities for our area businesses.”

Drug treatment center coming to Hoquiam

HOQUIAM, Wash. – A drug treatment center could be open soon in Hoquiam. Director of Grays Harbor County Public Health department Joan Brewster spoke to the city council at their meeting “I’m here tonight to say that I think we have a very serious problem affecting our harbor, and that problem is drugs, and chief among those is heroin.”
Brewster added that The first 50 or so patients are already being taxied to Olympia, at a significant cost to the county, but said that the needle exchange program services about 2,000 harbor residents.
Executive Director of the Evergreen Treatment Center Dr. Molly Carney said they signed a lease on a building on Levee Street and hope to open in February or March.

United Way Coat & Blanket Drive is underway, and needs shoes

ABERDEEN, Wash. – Collection boxes are out, and United Way is teaming with local businesses and organizations during the month of October to make sure that people have coats and blankets for the winter. United Way will also be collecting new shoes for elementary school children. (Used shoes cannot be used for health reasons. United Way works directly with area elementary schools to deliver new shoes and coats to the schools. The demand is overwhelming as many children are wearing shoes that no longer fit or are so worn that their feet are getting soaked. There are more than 5,000 elementary children and United Way anticipates needing more than 300 pairs of shoes to meet requests from local schools.

During October bring your donations to any Les Schwab, Dennis Company, Anchor Bank and Timberland Bank locations. After sending items directly to local schools there will be community distributions on November 5th for, families and children who need them in Aberdeen, Hoquiam, Westport, Ocean Shores, Montesano and Elma. 

Nora LeBlanc, Executive Director for United Way said, “This is a wonderful example of communities working together to meet community needs. This drive has been going on for 18 years with the work of so many generous volunteers, businesses and agencies. To make a donation or to volunteer call United Way at 360.532.6260.