July 13, 2015
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Frustrated over lengthy permit review, Port of Vancouver asks Inslee to push for firm timeline

The Port of Vancouver sent a letter to Gov. Jay Inslee last week, saying the ongoing delays to environmental reviews of the proposed Vancouver Energy terminal are unacceptable and will hurt the opportunity for economic growth in the region.

In a letter to the governor, the Port of Vancouver asked Inslee to direct the state's Energy Facility Site Evaluation Committee (EFSEC) to provide a publicly available schedule for the review process and to require the council to stick to that schedule. Next month will mark two years since EFSEC began its one-year review, said Todd Coleman, CEO of the Port of Vancouver USA.

"We are now in month 22 of this 12-month process, and we just received word that the Draft Environmental Impact Statement is once again delayed and not scheduled to be released for public comment until November 2015," he wrote. "This is simply unacceptable and has far-reaching consequences."

Vancouver Energy, a partnership between Savage Services and Tesoro, is planning a project at the Port of Vancouver that will accept crude oil arriving by rail, temporarily store it in secure tanks, transfer it to double-hulled vessels, then ship it to West Coast refineries for conversion into transportation fuel to be used by American consumers. The project would create more than 1,000 direct, indirect and induced construction and operation jobs to build and operate the facility.

The Columbian has more on the story.

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Export-Import Bank helps employers compete globally

By U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) and Kris Johnson

With the creation of the U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank over 80 years ago, many Washington state businesses -- both large and small -- have remarkable success stories to tell about growing their businesses because of exports.

These stories can be found throughout the Washington state in a variety of industries. Take for example, Seattle's Lighthouse for the Blind, a manufacturer of machine parts and molding for aerospace companies. Because of its robust export business supported by the bank, it is able provide more than 400 good-paying jobs for Washingtonians in the deaf-blind community. ...

Congress must act to reauthorize the Ex-Im Bank charter. The consequences of doing nothing would be devastating to employers and employees in Washington state and around the nation.

Click here to read the full op-ed in The Hill

Our Voice: Lawmakers make right choice supporting gas tax

By the editorial board of the Tri-City Herald

Voting in favor of a significant tax hike is not easy for lawmakers from conservative legislative districts.

So the Mid-Columbia legislators who approved an 11.9-cent gas tax increase should be commended for having the courage to make the right decision. ...

Tax hikes are tough to take, but at least in this case the Tri-City area will get some benefit from the new revenue.

And that is thanks to several Mid-Columbia lawmakers who made the right, but tough, choice...

Click here to read the full editorial in The Tri-City Herald
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