News Releases

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), a senior member of the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS) Subcommittee, announced that she has included funding to boost Peninsula education and workforce priorities in the Fiscal Year 2011 LHHS Appropriations bill.

"In the 21st century economy, it is critical that we continue investing in local projects that train our workforce, teach our students, and boost our economy in communities throughout the Peninsula," said Senator Murray. "These investments will fund community priorities like hospital expansions and an education center. I was proud to fight for these local investments, and I'm going to continue working to help Washington state communities meet the needs of their families.”

Having passed the LHHS Subcommittee, the bill will now go to the full Senate Appropriations Committee before going to the full Senate for consideration.

The following projects were included in the bill for the Peninsula:

Grays Harbor Community Hospital, West Campus Tower Expansion – $750,000

This funding will help with an expansion of the Grays Harbor Community Hospital. This expansion will improve patient safety and capacity on rural Washington's central Pacific Coast, allowing for more patients to get care locally and not have to travel to Seattle for care.  Over the last five years, the need to expand patient services on Washington's Central Pacific Coast has increased significantly, with surgical volumes in the area expected to grow by 25 to 30 percent.

“Quality healthcare is important to everyone. Yet the cost, in terms of time and travel, for those living in remotely located communities can be overwhelming. This project funding will enable us to improve access to quality care, and treat patients and their families right here at home,” said Mike Melville, Chairman of Grays Harbor Community Hospital.

Regional Education and Training Center (RETC), Regional Education and Training Center at Satsop – $900,000

This funding will support programs providing rapid certifications, entry-level degrees and diplomas, and advanced certifications.  RETC also will provide training facilities and resources for federal, state and local Homeland Security and Emergency Management personnel.

“Working with industry, the RETC has created programs that will put Washingtonians to work next week, not next year.  Our goal is to help put over 800 people back to work in the next twelve months,” said Ryan Davis, Executive Director of RETC.