Live coverage: Boldt to deliver State of County address today




Update: We are offering live coverage of today’s State of the Country address. Reporter Stephanie Rice will live-tweet from the event at @col_clarkgov. You can also follow the action here.

5:20 p.m.: Boldt finishes, gets ovation. Now everyone is in a hurry to get back into the sunshine.

5:04 p.m.: Round of applause for saying Olympia just needs to set simple stormwater regs “and then get out of the way.”

5:02 p.m.: Boldt does have time and courage to criticize state stormwater regulations, which he says stifles development and increases paperwork.

4:56 p.m.: Boldt doesn’t have the “time or courage” to get into CRC. Laughter. Maybe he doesn’t want to criticize Herrera Beutler cuz her dad is here.

4:44 p.m.: Boldt is winning over the crowd with his jokes.

4:43 p.m.: Boldt thanks people for giving commishes feedback, via email “or Columbian blogs.” Gets huge laugh.

4:41 p.m.: Boldt is going rogue and not standing at the podium. Just has notecards.

4:39 p.m.: Clark County Commish Stuart introducing Chairman Marc Boldt, who gets nice round of applause but not a Snell-level reception

4:32 p.m.: Caley, a nurse, also serves on public health advisory board. Wonder how she feels about smoking in parks?

4:29 p.m.: A few #VanWa councilors here but I don’t see Mayor Leavitt. I bet he’d be here if his BFF Steve Stuart was giving the address.

4:26 pm.: Caley, among other things, volunteers for Share.

4:25 p.m.: Clark County Commish Tom Mielke giving “Spirit of Clark County” awards to Veterans Assistance Center, Klineline Kids Fishing event & Joan Caley.

4:19 p.m.: Cmdr. Mike Cooke led Gang Green but he couldn’t be here to accept award because he is at a raid, McCabe said.

4:16 p.m.: Now let’s give it up for Clark County- Skamania County drug task force for massive “Gang Green” bust. Cmdr. Mike McCabe thanks all the officers.

4:13 p.m.: Snell said he’s surprised by award but was suspicious when his wife and parents said they’d be attending the State of the County.

4:11 p.m.: Time to honor people. First honoree is Marty Snell, director of Community Development. Kudos for new fee schedule. Gets ovation.

3:59 p.m.: Washougal Mayor Sean Guard welcoming crowd, raving about how Mt. Hood looks today. Now you know why people live in east county, he said.

3:54 p.m.: At auditorium at WHS, ready for Clark County State of the County. Full house.

Marc Boldt, chairman of the Board of Clark County Commissioners, will put a spotlight on local nonprofits and volunteers when he delivers the annual State of the County address.

The event is 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. today in the Washburn Performing Arts Center at Washougal High School, 1201 39th St.

The event is free, but attendees are asked to bring non-perishable food.

Since 2010, the Salvation Army has been collecting food and donations at the annual event. More than 1,000 pounds of food were collected in 2011, enough to feed more than 100 people for about a week.

Today, in addition to the Salvation Army, other groups will have representatives to accept donations and sign up volunteers. The groups include Inter-Faith Treasure House of Camas-Washougal, Share, Open House Ministries, Children’s Home Society of Washington and the Parks Foundation.

Boldt and the two other commissioners, Steve Stuart and Tom Mielke, have chosen community volunteers to honor.

“Good things can and do come during hard times when citizens step up and help others,” said Boldt, according to a county news release. “We need neighbors helping neighbors as much as ever.”

His address isn’t expected to include any budget bombshells.

During a commissioner retreat on Jan. 13, Budget Director Jim Dickman called the general fund budget “stable but still fragile.” He said that since the county remains behind the national average in economic recovery, he predicts a flat revenue forecast for the 2013-14 budget.

The county’s general fund budget, projected at $280 million for two years, has been cut by $62 million since the 2007-08 budget.

Expenses were further decreased by reducing the hours and pay of about 200 employees after 270 positions were cut. Most employees started paying 7 percent of their health insurance premiums this month, which will save the county $1.6 million.

Those savings mean the county’s not in a position to have to do layoffs, Deputy Administrator Glenn Olson told commissioners during the retreat.