HBA of Tri-Cities asks Gov. Inslee to allow construction during stay home order

TRI-CITIES, Wash. — The Homebuilders Association of Tri-Cities (HBATC) sent a letter to Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday, asking him to allow construction while his Stay Home, Stay Healthy order is in effect.

The letter is written on behalf of the 600 member companies and nearly 8,000 employees of the HBATC.

“We are writing to ask you to reconsider your policy direction stating that ‘construction is not considered an essential activity,'” the letter says. ”

It states that HBATC shares the governor’s commitment to protecting the health and well-being of Washingtonians during the coronavirus epidemic, but points out that low-income housing construction has been allowed to continue, “demonstrating that it can be done safely.”

The letter contains six reason why the HBATC believes Gov. Inslee should reconsider:

  1. Home construction can be done safely, just like government funded construction
  2. Local permitting and inspections can be done safely
  3. Housing is a major engine of our state economy
  4. Halting construction of homes will only exacerbate our current housing crisis
  5. Washingtonians are relying on us for homes
  6. Vandalism and theft are on the rise in the wake of the shutdown

The letter says the HBATC is afraid of the economic repercutions of eliminating construction during Inslee’s order.

“We respectfully ask you to reverse your policy direction so that housing and commercial construction be considered an essential activity just like the government funded construction projects that are working safely under the stay order today,” the letter continues. “We share some of the same contractors and know they will be just as safe in the private sector jobs, provided proper distancing and sanitation protocols are followed.”

Click here to read the full letter.