Welcome to our electronic newsletter, which is based on the printed version we mail each month. 

Judge awards attorneys' fees to EDB, Chamber and Port

ON DEC. 28, 2016,  Superior Court Judge Ronald Culpepper awarded more than $121,000 in attorneys' fees to the EDB, Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce and the Port of Tacoma. The decision ordered the state Attorney General to compensate the three organizations following Culpepper's earlier ruling that that they did not violate state campaign-finance laws when they challenged the legality of anti-business ballot measures filed by a citizen group. The measures would have required public votes on large industrial projects. 

Despite the court's rather complete rejection of his case, the Attorney General has decided to appeal.

For Northwest Seaport Alliance, 2016 successes only the beginning  

IN AUGUST 2015,  the ports of Tacoma and Seattle came together to form The Northwest Seaport Alliance. The partnership created the fourth-largest container gateway in North America, and a competitive environment for jobs and economic development. It was a bold and unconventional move-and an important step toward a collaborative, regional operating model that had never been seen before.

"Facing unprecedented competition within the shipping industry, we knew we had to form a bold, new model to keep-and grow-valuable trade-related jobs in our region," said Dick Marzano, co-chair of The Northwest Seaport Alliance. "It hasn't always been easy, and we will continue to face challenges, but maintaining and growing family-wage jobs is well worth it."

"By coming together as one gateway, we are able to leverage our investments, offer a wider portfolio of facilities to meet changing customer needs and provide an efficient launch point to Asian markets for Washington manufacturers and agricultural interests," said John Creighton, the other co-chair of the Alliance. "Our region wins while the industry also benefits."

Today, just 18 months after its launch, The Northwest Seaport Alliance has much to celebrate.
  • General Central Peninsula construction in Tacoma's South Harbor is in progress. Commissioners approved  $141 million in improvements that include a realigned dock and cranes that will simultaneously handle two mega ships.
  • Terminal 5 improvements in Seattle's North Harbor will make the cargo-handling facility "big-ship ready." The Port of Seattle prepared the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) on the project. 
  • The new Operations Service Center is making progress toward improving rail, ship, trucking and crane performance across The Northwest Seaport Alliance gateway. Smoother cargo flows also help advance environmental and safety goals, such as reduced idling emissions and fuel consumption.
  • Community/government partnerships. The Northwest Seaport Alliance worked with the City of Tacoma to rebuild the Port of Tacoma Road to meet heavy-haul standards. Seattle also approved a heavy-haul corridor. The State Department of Commerce provided funding to build the North Lead Rail project, which will add essential rail capacity in the South Harbor.
  • Strong numbers. To support strong imports and agricultural exports during the 2016 peak season, The Northwest Seaport Alliance added three weeks to its extended service-hours program by reimbursing terminal operators up to $2 million. November 2016 laden import and export volumes were the highest for the month over the last five years. 
The icing on the cake? In November, the Washington Public Ports Association recognized The Northwest Seaport Alliance with its annual Port of the Year Award for 2016, citing its first-year accomplishments. 

Eco-friendly industry in Tacoma-Pierce County  

THE SOUTH SOUND IS A GREAT PLACE  for business and a great place to live, and environmentally progressive companies are ensuring it stays that way. 

One example is Targa Sound Terminal. The Tacoma Tideflats company provides bulk liquid logistics, and supplies fuel and other products and services to industry throughout the Pacific Northwest. Targa has long been a leader in bringing sustainable fuels to the PNW market. In 2007, Targa introduced ratio-blended biodiesel at its truck rack. 

The company has worked with local biodiesel producers and supported locally grown canola production. In 2016, the firm began offering renewable diesel at its truck rack, providing an alternative that is chemically the same as petroleum-based diesel but made from recently living biomass. Renewable diesel can be used just like diesel fuel and requires no modifications to engines. Targa also provides fuel-grade ethanol to the market.

"The Targa team continues to work hard to grow competitive sustainable fuels in our region," said Troy Goodman, Targa Sound Terminal president.

Here are two more examples of eco-friendly industrial firms in Tacoma-Pierce County:
  • WestRock. The Tacoma pulp and paper mill has utilized sustainable business practices for generations. The company uses recovered paper to make pulp; generates renewable power from bark and other byproducts using highly efficient, cogeneration technology; and recycles water multiple times before it's cleaned and returned it to the environment.  
  • GKN Aerospace in Sumner produces winglets and wing tip devices that help aircraft use less fuel in flight by improving the aerodynamic efficiency of the wing and reducing drag of the plane. The composite winglets reduce weight, helping aircraft operators globally use less fuel and improve environmental performance.
These are only a few local industrial firms that continue to safeguard the environment and set the bar well above compliance. We'll feature more in future issues of Teamwork

© Copyright 2016 Economic Development Board for Tacoma/Pierce County
Teamwork is a service of the EDB, a non-profit corporation focused on recruitment and retention of primary businesses in Tacoma and Pierce County.  Telephone: 253-383-4726. Website: www.edbtacomapierce.org


briefs hed
EDB 2017 Annual Meeting just around the corner

Join old friends and see new faces at the 2017 EDB Annual Meeting March 1 at the Greater Tacoma Convention & Trade Center. 
You won't want to miss keynote speaker Bill Conerly, PhD, who will present "Conerly on the Economy: Business Challenges and Opportunities in 2017." This highly regarded advisor to businesses and institutions is a savvy, funny and provocative speaker.
Also on tap...the EDB's unveiling of the Excellent 10 Awards, annual business retention and recruitment results, winner of the Golden Shovel Award and (as always) fabulous prizes.

Tables and seats are selling quickly. Reserve your spot at edbtacomapierce.org
Advance registration and payment required.

Free disaster-recovery forum March 7

In the aftermath of disaster, what can businesses expect when it comes to resuming normal operations? Get your questions answered at the March 7  Post Disaster Recovery Forum, presented by the  Pierce County Economic Development Department. The free event will be 8 a.m. to noon at  Dacca Barn in Fife.
Learn about "red tagging" and how to get back into your building. Find out how priorities are set regarding water and power restoration and re-opening roadways. And learn more about the roles of FEMA and the Washington State Emergency Management Division. 
Click here for more information and to register.