(1) The department shall work with private sector organizations, industry and sector associations, federal agencies, state agencies that use a sector-based approach to service delivery, local governments, local associate development organizations, and higher education and training institutions in the development of industry sector-based strategies to diversify the economy, facilitate technology transfer and diffusion, and increase value-added production. The industry sectors targeted by the department may include, but are not limited to, aerospace, agriculture, food processing, forest products, marine services, health and biomedical, software, digital and interactive media, transportation and distribution, and microelectronics. The department shall, on a continuing basis, evaluate the potential return to the state from devoting additional resources to an industry sector-based approach to economic development and identifying and assisting additional sectors.
(2) The department's sector-based strategies shall include, but not be limited to, cluster-based strategies that focus on assisting regional industry sectors and related firms and institutions that meet the definition of an industry cluster in this section and based on criteria identified by the working group established in this chapter.
(3)(a) The department shall promote, market, and encourage growth in the production of films and videos, as well as television commercials within the state; to this end the department is directed to assist in the location of a film and video production studio within the state.
(b) The department may, in carrying out its efforts to encourage film and video production in the state, solicit and receive gifts, grants, funds, fees, and endowments, in trust or otherwise, from tribal, local, or other governmental entities, as well as private sources, and may expend the same or any income therefrom for the encouragement of film and video production. All revenue received for such purposes shall be deposited into the general fund.
(4) In assisting in the development of regional and statewide industry cluster-based strategies, the department's activities shall include, but are not limited to:
(a) Facilitating regional focus group discussions and conducting studies to identify industry clusters, appraise the current information linkages within a cluster, and identify issues of common concern within a cluster;
(b) Supporting industry and cluster associations, publications of association and cluster directories, and related efforts to create or expand the activities of industry and cluster associations;
(c) Administering a competitive grant program to fund economic development activities designed to further regional cluster growth. In administering the program, the department shall work with the workforce training and education coordinating board, the state board for community and technical colleges, the employment security department, business, and labor.
(i) The department shall seek recommendations on criteria for evaluating applications for grant funds and recommend applicants for receipt of grant funds. Criteria shall include not duplicating the purpose or efforts of industry skill panels.
(ii) Applicants must include organizations from at least two counties and participants from the local business community. Eligible organizations include, but are not limited to, local governments, economic development councils, chambers of commerce, federally recognized Indian tribes, workforce development councils, and educational institutions.
(iii) Applications must evidence financial participation of the partner organizations.
(iv) Eligible activities include the formation of cluster economic development partnerships, research and analysis of economic development needs of the cluster, the development of a plan to meet the economic development needs of the cluster, and activities to implement the plan.
(v) Priority shall be given to applicants that complement industry skill panels and will use the grant funds to build linkages and joint projects.
(vi) The maximum amount of a grant is one hundred thousand dollars.
(vii) A maximum of one hundred thousand dollars total can go to King, Pierce, Kitsap, and Snohomish counties combined.
(viii) No more than ten percent of funds received for the grant program may be used by the department for administrative costs.
(5) As used in this chapter, "industry cluster" means a geographic concentration of interconnected companies in a single industry, related businesses in other industries, including suppliers and customers, and associated institutions, including government and education.
[2014 c 112 § 113; 2012 c 198 § 3; 2010 1st sp.s. c 7 § 59; 2009 c 151 § 1; 2007 c 228 § 201; 2006 c 105 § 1; 2005 c 136 § 14; 2003 c 153 § 2; 1998 c 245 § 85; 1994 c 144 § 1; 1993 c 280 § 12.]
Effective date—2012 c 198:
See note following RCW 70.94.6532
Effective date—2010 1st sp.s. c 26; 2010 1st sp.s. c 7:
See note following RCW 43.03.027
Savings—Effective date—2005 c 136:
See notes following RCW 43.168.020
Findings—2003 c 153: "The legislature finds that tourism is a growing sector of the Washington economy. Washington has a diverse geography, geology, climate, and natural resources, and offers abundant opportunities for wildlife viewing. Nature-based tourism is the fastest growing outdoor activity and segment of the travel industry and the state can take advantage of this by marketing Washington's natural assets to international as well as national tourist markets. Expanding tourism efforts can provide Washington residents with jobs and local communities with needed revenues.
The legislature also finds that current efforts to promote Washington's natural resources and nature-based tourism to national and international markets are too diffuse and limited by funding and that a collaborative effort among state and local governments, tribes, and private enterprises can serve to leverage the investments in nature-based tourism made by each." [2003 c 153 § 1.]
Effective date—1994 c 144: "This act shall take effect July 1, 1994." [1994 c 144 § 3.]