The Washington state Senate's capital budget includes $1.3 million for the Leavenworth Affordable Rental Project.  

Senator Brad Hawkins put in a request for the money, which would be used to support efforts by the group Upper Valley MEND to preserve 31 apartments for affordable workforce housing.  

Hawkins says the housing is essential to keep Leavenworth functioning. 

"The entire Leavenworth economy depends on a local workforce, so we need to continue to move forward on housing solutions, or essentially the community itself will struggle," said Hawkins. 

The Legislature has until March 7 to pass the capital budget. 

It also includes money locally to rebuild the Center for Drug & Alcohol Treatment ($19.6) and supply infrastructure at the Greater Wenatchee Irrigation District ($2 million) 

In addition, the Wenatchee Valley Museum and the YMCA are getting funds ($1 million each) to support their projects. 

Hawkins says funding for the Leavenworth Affordable Rental Project will bring it across the finish line. 

"The Leavenworth Affordable Housing Project is definitely a unique opportunity," Hawkins said. "And our Senate budget proposes to complete its final funding.” 

Upper Valley MEND is getting $600,000 for the project from the city of Leavenworth, $860,000 from Chelan County, and $1 million from the state.  

In 2022, Hawkins partnered with the City of Leavenworth, Chelan County, and Upper Valley MEND to secure passage of Senate Bill 5868, which allows counties to utilize their existing .09 sales tax dollars for affordable housing infrastructure or facilities.  

Chelan County has been using its authority to support project funding as part of its Cascade Public Infrastructure Fund. 

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Gallery Credit: Chris Hansen

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