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Kerry Madden — When drugs conquer all

We just said goodbye to a 26-year-old neighbor, a kid I watched grow up from sandbox to carpool to high school rock band to opera singer to drugs. His name was Noah. He could sing a seamless “Stardust,” and he loved the Italian opera singer Tito Gobbi, because Gobbi was a true character actor too.

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Let’s debate the Trans-Pacific Partnership before OKing it

This spring, President Barack Obama and Republican leaders in Congress want to use an outdated process used to pass the North American Free Trade Agreement more than 20 years ago — a rule called “fast track” — to force through trade deals without a real debate or any amendments. And fast track would be used to speed passage of the giant Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, trade deal.

Governor’s carbon bill good for environment and business

In Olympia, people speak of “two Washingtons”: the prosperous cities of Puget Sound, home to numerous globally recognized companies, and the rural communities where job recovery is slower and economic development lags behind national averages. Washington needs bold efforts to spur job growth and innovation across all of our communities.

Paul Noe — Governor’s carbon bill would make mills less competitive

Recent news from coastal Washington and the Olympic Peninsula has provided a glimpse into the future of a paper and wood products industry that plays a critical role in the region’s economy. Investments in local facilities are helping them compete in the new efficient manufacturing, carbon neutral energy economy. The question is whether state policies collectively are going to help or hinder that competitiveness.

County facing rising costs, shrinking revenue

The time has come to meet Grays Harbor County’s fiscal problems head on. Your three county commissioners are tasked each year with writing and funding an annual budget, which results in an itemized list of revenue sources (expected income) and expenditures (expected costs) that appear in its General Fund Budget.