September 9 2005

Aztec Int’l takes supplier excellence award

The Commander of the Defense Supply Center Columbus, Ohio, has selected Aztec International Timber & Trading, Ltd., a Vancouver-based corporation, to receive a 2004 Supplier Excellence Silver Award. The company was honored at the Land and Maritime Supply Chains Business Conference and Exhibition Aug. 29-31 in Columbus.

Company President and owner David A. Xóchihua will attend the conference in Columbus to accept the award.

Aztec Int’l is an importer, exporter and manufacturer’s representative for domestic and international forest products, custom fabricated wood and wood related items and has been a supplier to the government since 1993.

Small businesses garnered $69B in federal contracts in FY 2004

U.S. small businesses reaped a record $69.23 billion in federal prime contracts last year, surpassing the previous high by almost 6 percent, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. The contracts represented 23 percent of federal prime contracting dollars and 43.7 percent of federal prime contracting actions in fiscal year 2004.

Of the $299.9 billion awarded in federal prime contracts, about $210.7 billion, or more than 70 percent, was awarded by the Defense Department. Defense awarded $46.9 billion of its contracts, or about 22.3 percent, to small businesses.

The FPDC report showed that small disadvantaged businesses surpassed their 5 percent goal, registering 6.2 percent of total federal prime contracting dollars with $18.54 billion in prime contracts.

The dollars to women-owned small businesses increased by $814.6 million to a record $9.1 billion, about 3 percent of the governmentwide total.

Contracts to service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses more than doubled, reaching $1.15 billion, up from $550 million in FY 2003.

NW Natural files for natural gas rate increase

Northwest Natural Gas Co. filed with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission for a rate increase to cover higher wholesale natural gas costs. Residential customers would see an average monthly increase of 9.8 percent in their bills.

The filing reflects the cost of natural gas supplies NW Natural has purchased on behalf of its customers for the coming year. The company passes wholesale gas costs directly through to customers and makes no profit on the gas itself.

Commercial customers would see a rate increase between 9.9 percent and 11.4 percent, depending on the rate schedule. Rates for industrial firm customers would increase by between 10.4 percent and 15 percent, depending on the rate schedule. If approved by the WUTC, any increases would take effect Oct. 1.

NW Natural has approximately 60,000 customers in Washington.

Stevenson manufacturer gets Gov. Safety Award

Next week, four years after the federal government dropped workplace ergonomics standards, Molded Fiber Glass/NW (MFG/NW) in Stevenson Washington will receive the Governor’s Safety Award for implementing a comprehensive ergonomics and lean production program dramatically increasing worker safety. Over the last five years, MFG/NW experienced zero reportable accidents, zero time loss due to accidents, and virtually no employee turnover in two years. On Oct. 29 the company will celebrate six years without a time loss accident.

The award ceremony will be held at 2 p.m. on Sept. 9 at the Bonneville Hot Springs Resort. Prior to the ceremony, representatives from the Governor’s Office and Washington State L and I will tour the Molded Fiber Glass/Northwest facility.

Hilton reservation marketing group takes new offices

Hilton Hotels Corp. has leased 1,317 square feet of office space in McGillivray Place, located at 16701 S.E. McGillivray Vancouver.

Tim Parker and Don Drake, Melvin Mark Brokerage Co., represented McGillivray Place, and Kevin Wingate-Pearse, The Sheldon Company, represented Hilton. McGillivray Place is owned by Smarty Jones LLC and Piazza Street LLC.

Formerly located in downtown Vancouver, this office for Hilton’s advance reservation marketing group handles hotel room sales both nationally and internationally.

The Melvin Mark Companies currently own or manage more than 2.8 million square feet of commercial space in the Portland-Vancouver area.

Curves opens new location

Curves thirty minute fitness centers for women will be opening a new location in the Andresen Safeway Complex at 78th St. and Andresen Blvd.near Vancouver Mall Sept. 19th.The center will host a grand opening special of 66 percent off to the first 100 members who join in September.

Since the first Curves franchise opened in 1995, the organization has seen exponential growth, beginning with 44 locations in 1996 and expanding to more than 1,500 centers in 2000. In Entrepreneur Magazine’s 2004 list of the top five hundred franchises, Curves was named the fastest growing franchise of any kind in the world, as well as the number two overall best franchise. Beth Hamilton, owner of the newly opened franchise, also owns two others in Clark County and three in Cowlitz County.

Northwest Only opens first retail location at mall

Northwest Only has opened in Vancouver its first “bricks and mortar” store. Prior to opening the new store, Northwest Only had exclusively been an internet retailer, selling Northwest-oriented products and foods at The new store inside the Vancouver mall offers free gift-wrapping, free cups of gourmet coffee, samples of many of the food items it carries, and worldwide shipping.

Northwest Only continues to grow and expand its presence in Clark County and the Pacific Northwest.

Vancouver Tuesday Morning store opens Sept.

Tuesday Morning, a national discount retailer of home furnishings and gifts, will open a new store in Vancouver on Sept. 13. This new, 6,016-square-foot store is located in Vancouver Place at 11505 N.E. Fourth Plain Road.

This is Tuesday Morning’s second store in Clark County. The first is in Hazel Dell.

Bean & Ellie’s opened for dinner at Sunrise location

Husband and wife team Tim and Janine Ellsworth opened a new “family-friendly” restaurant on Sept. 2 at the location of their recently purchased franchised Sunrise Bagels store at 808 Harney in downtown Vancouver.

Sunrise Bagels will still run from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. The store will close down from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and Bean and Ellie’s will open up evenings until 10 p.m.

Entrée offerings include sandwiches and burgers and signature entrees, while kids choose from the classics – chicken strips, “mac & cheese” and mini-pizzas. Entrees range from $8 to $16.

Wells Fargo to give up to $1 million to Katrina relief

Wells Fargo and its team members will contribute up to $1 million to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.

The company will contribute $500,000 to the American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund to support immediate disaster relief and recovery. In addition, Wells Fargo will match contributions from its 151,000 team members dollar-for-dollar, up to $250,000, for a potential total of $1 million.

Wells Fargo has also opened three donations accounts on behalf of the Portland-based Mercy Corps relief agency, the American Red Cross and the United Way for any members of the public who want to help.

New Edge Networks powers drugstore kiosk system

New Edge Networks has provided Duane Reade, New York City’s largest drug store chain, with a private network of self-help pharmacy kiosks, which is boosting its incremental prescriptions sales. The kiosks utilize a private and secure broadband network that uses DSL technology for carrying voice, data and video without using the Internet. Each interactive kiosk is equipped with a flat-bed scanner, touch-screen monitor, phone line and a Web camera allowing customers to talk live with a pharmacist. Patients can receive free home delivery or make arrangements for pick-up at any Duane Reade pharmacy. There are currently more than 60 self-service kiosks in company locations. Duane Reade plans to double the number of kiosks every 12 months.

Pacific Lifestyle Homes supports Woodland schools

Pacific Lifestyle Homes presented a $1,500 contribution to the Citizens for Woodland Schools on Wednesday to support the Sept. 20 bond measure. The $3.75 million bond measure will pay for slightly more than 40 acres of land northwest of Woodland, between Dike Road and Interstate 5, to accommodate the district’s growing population.

The company said it will build more than 400 homes in the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan area in 2005. And while only a handful of their homes were built in the Woodland School District, it is planning on having a greater presence there in the coming years.

Urban design planning for Portland’s transit mall discussed

As Portland begins to implement a new urban design vision to integrate light rail into the city’s transit mall, it will explore how to best take advantage of unique development opportunities around new light rail station areas and along the expanded mall at an event from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 21 in the second floor auditorium of the Portland Building at 1120 S.W. Fifth Ave. Registration fees range from $5 to $30. The registration deadline by mail, fax or phone is Sept. 16, or register online by Sept. 20. To register, visit or call 503-720-0922. For more information visit

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