State’s largest farmworker rental complex opening in Yakima

YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — Washington state’s largest single farmworker rental complex will soon open in Yakima.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports that Valicoff Fruit will begin housing guest workers in a former 800-bed hotel next month.

The project has caught the attention of Wafla, a labor recruiting firm formerly known as Washington Farm Labor Association, which has agreed to help manage the operation scheduled to open June 1.

The former FairBridge Inn and Suites was recently purchased by Valicoff Fruit with the intent to house seasonal workers.

The project will help ease the financial burden of growers unable to tap guest worker programs such as H-2A because they lack housing. Growers have estimated the cost of building farmworker housing at $15,000 per bed.