Is this a baldfaced hornet and if so should it be removed if it is near an area where you would want to hang out. It's in a tree in Olalla Washington where there is a swing. Any advise would be appreciated.
Looks like a baldfaced. I had one in the peak of my garage roof and thought we could peacefully coexist. I guess they didn't like the sound of the lawnmower and attacked me. I would not sit on that swing!
We had one of these right next door to the garden shed. They didn't mind us at all, not even when we needed to open or close the door to the shed, thus shaking their nest slightly. They did however eat a lot of yellow jackets and other nuisance bugs.
The general theme for these guys - at least where I live - is if the humans leave them alone, they leave the humans alone. However, if they feel bothered by humans, than they are aggressive as all hell.
Should they be removed?
I think it depends on the human. If you have children who may interact with the nest in some way, then probably remove it. They can kill a small person, especially if they are allergic or sensitive to stings.
If the humans hanging out in the space, are content to leave the nest alone, then take advantage of the hornet's natural tendency to eat other wasps.