As the week comes to an end, some notable bits of information has come in from the Port of Tacoma.
First, Congressman-elect Denny Heck shared with SR-167 project supporters yesterday a conversation he had with Governor-elect Jay Inslee in which the Inslee declared, “I will do everything humanly possible to get the funding needed to complete SR-167.”
A simple statement, but one that confirms that leaders across Washington understand how this project is one of statewide significance.
On another note, since there has been a lot of attention over the last year about promoting exports. President Barack Obama has launched his National Export Initiative that, among other things, seeks to provide technical expertise to U.S. companies to help them promote their products overseas and engage in international trade.
The debate over international trade and export promotion, however, often overlooks one critical point: how do you actually move your product from your factory, field or mine to the customer? Are there the rail or road connections to move your widgets?
According to the Washington Council for International Trade, forty percent of jobs in the state are connected to international trade, making Washington the most trade dependent state in the nation. Having the physical connections between dock and factory (or warehouse or field) is essential. Completion of SR-167 provides a direct link to the Kent and Puyallup River valleys, the second largest distribution center network in on the west coast. In fact, 44 percent of regional truck trips by the Port of Tacoma is destined for this area.