After successfully advancing through three Senate committees this session, Senate Bill 5001, sponsored by Sen. Brad Hawkins, has been approved unanimously by the Washington State Senate.
“This bill would give us the option of forming a second Public Facilities District, which would provide our region a legal structure for both financing and governance,” said Hawkins. He added, “If we can advance this bill through the rest of the process, we will have the ability to construct and operate a regional sports complex, if that is what our community leaders and voters decide to do.”
Senate Bill 5001 would amend the existing Public Facilities District statute to allow communities in the region to form a second district and ultimately seek voter approve a regional sports complex.
Hawkins hosted several meetings last fall with local mayors, county commissioners, regional port, chamber, community leaders, and swimming groups. Stakeholders are interested in potentially locating any project in the Wenatchi Landing area near East Wenatchee, 283 acres of regionally accessible land near the Odabashian Bridge.
Hawkins believes development of a facility in Wenatchi Landing would help meet an aquatic and recreational need in the region while also serving as a catalyst development project, potentially leading to significant economic activities in that area, including hotels, restaurants, and retail shopping.
The Chelan-Douglas Regional Port Authority is currently administering a feasibility study to analyze the project and its economic benefits. The study group is comprised of numerous local officials and is chaired by East Wenatchee Mayor Jerrilea Crawford. For more information, click here.
East Wenatchee Mayor Jerrilea Crawford and Wenatchee Mayor Frank Kuntz visited with me in Olympia earlier in the session and testified for Senate Bill 5001, our public facilities districts bill.