I was able to spend last week in Spokane where I continued to meet with people all over the community to hear their thoughts and ideas. It’s always good to be home and to meet with people here in our community. I get to see the best of what is going on in Eastern Washington and hear people’s stories. I wanted to take a minute to update you on my week back so you are up-to-date on what’s going on.
On Monday, I spoke with the CEO of CHAS to discuss funding for the Community Health Centers program and then met with Todd Mielke, CEO of Greater Spokane Incorporated (GSI), to work together on economic development here in Spokane. I finished the day by hearing from local pastors on their work with refugees in the Spokane area and funding for refugee resettlement programs nationwide.
On Tuesday, I visited Freeman High School to meet with faculty and staff following last week’s shooting. As I said on Facebook, “It was powerful to stop by Freeman High School this morning. The faculty and staff are amazing people and I will be forever grateful for them.”
Following that visit, I met with representatives from Spokane International Airport to talk about efforts to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and issues facing airports in Eastern Washington. Then I hosted another Coffee with Cathy event, where I welcomed some local veterans to talk about how to get new and transitioning veterans connected with the groups and resources they need. Mental health, sexual trauma, and GI Bill benefits were also subjects of conversation.
The next morning, I started the day by speaking with the Affiliated Tribes of NW Indians at their annual conference. Hosted by the Colville Tribe, I spoke about the need for active forest management, improvements and accountability for Indian Health Services, and other issues facing our tribes in the Pacific Northwest. Following my speech, I met with district tribal leadership from tribes here in Washington’s beautiful Fifth Congressional District.
From there I hosted Rabbi Hahn from the Chabad of Spokane County. Wednesday began the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah, and Rabbi Hahn and I discussed the significance of the holiday and the work he is doing here in the community. In case you missed it, you can view my statement on Rosh Hashanah here.
Next, I met with Whitworth University President Beck Taylor to catch up and discuss issues facing the region’s institutions of higher education. I then made my way to a roundtable discussion with local Border Patrol leadership to hear about what they are seeing in Eastern Washington and get their thoughts on immigration and border patrol issues nationwide.
I rounded up the day by visiting the Spokane Fire District 9 Administration and Training Center, touring O’Connor Family Medicine, meeting with new WSU Spokane Chancellor Darryl DeWald, and hosting a UBS roundtable.
On Thursday, I welcomed members of Eastern Washington’s health care community for a Graduate Medical Education roundtable. Bringing more residencies to Eastern Washington means bringing more doctors to Eastern Washington, and that’s what Graduate Medical Education programs can help do for our community. That’s also why I’m leading bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education program.
Later in the day, I made my way to Northwest Farm Credit Services for a meet and greet and question and answer session with their 200+ employees. In case you missed it, I live-streamed some of the question and answer session on my Facebook page here:
I then hosted a tax reform roundtable discussion with GMT Wealth Management to talk about the need for tax reform in growing our economy, creating jobs, and raising wages for the low and middle class in Eastern Washington. Finally, I stopped by Youthful Horizons Therapy to tour their facility and hear their thoughts on the current state of health care in America.
On Friday, I visited Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center in Spokane to meet with Interim Director Tracye Davis, hear from doctors and staff, and tour the facility. It was great to visit and I am encouraged that we can continue to work together to get our veterans the best care imaginable.
This week, the People’s House is back in session in the nation’s capital. Make sure you are staying up to date on everything going on by following along on Facebook and Twitter. It’s a great honor to represent Eastern Washington and please never hesitate to contact my office with questions, concerns, or ideas on the important issues facing our country.