East Clark County forges new economic development group

By Aaron Corvin, Columbian port & economy reporter

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Paul Dennis is stepping down from his position as mayor of Camas to lead economic development efforts in east Clark County. Dennis and his private consulting firm — Cascade Planning Group — have been selected to lead the new Camas-Washougal Economic Development Association, the Port of Camas-Washougal announced today.

Plans call for Dennis to serve as economic development director and for his firm to provide services under a contract paid for by the port and the cities of Camas and Washougal. It's not clear yet how much the contract will be worth.

The port and cities still must sign off on a contract that would formally establish the new regional economic development effort.

Vancouver-based E.D. Hovee & Company will play a supporting role in the new economic development group.

Final decisions by the city councils of Camas and Washougal are expected during their regular public meetings on June 6. The port’s Board of Commissioners is expected to take final action on June 7.

“We have a unique opportunity here to chart a course for east county and create commercial, industrial and retail jobs that will bring sustainable economic vitality to our community,” Port of Camas-Washougal Commissioner Mark Lampton said in a news release.