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Archives: Oct. 2011

Oct.
26th

Maytown litigation cost Port of Tacoma nearly $1.5 million

A new accounting of legal bills and fees shows the Port of Tacoma has spend nearly $1.5 million fighting a citizens group in Thurston County over a gravel mining permit on land the port once owned.

That group, Friends of Rocky Prairie, this month dropped its last legal appeal allowing the site’s new owner, Maytown Sand & Gravel, to begin extracting gravel from the site near Maytown.

The port spent $1.479 million on costs for outside counsel, expert witnesses and other costs fighting to keep the gravel mining permit alive for Maytown Sand & Gravel. The port had a vested

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Oct.
26th

Mortgage fraud trial delayed until May

The fraud trial of a former Pierce Commercial Bank senior vice president and three co-defendants has been delayed until next May.

The case against Shawn L. Portmann, Sonja L. Lightfoot, Jeanette R. Salsi and Adam S. Voelker in U.S. District court will begin May 15 instead of this month as originally set.

Defense lawyers asked for the trial delay because of the case’s complexity and the needed to study the voluminous documents involved in the case. Government prosecutors did not object to the delay.

The federal government accused Portmann and the co-defendants of submitting false document regarding borrowers’ qualifications and

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Oct.
26th

Good news: Boeing profits up; Bad news: airliner deliveries down from forecast

Boeing Co. surprised Wall Street today with earnings of $1.46 a share or $1.1 billion for the third quarter compared with analysts’ average forecasts of $1.10 a share.

The higher profits came as a result of near 10 percent operating margins in the company’s Puget Sound-based commercial airplanes division and steady results in its defense division.

Investors reacted favorably to those results. Boeing stock was selling for $67.08 a share in morning trading today. That’s an increase of $3.36 or 5.28 percent a share.

With that good earnings news, however, came confirmation of what analysts had been predicting for

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Oct.
25th

Lobbyists fees lifted from Public Disclosure filing

One more note on the back and forth between the Port of Tacoma and Pierce Transit about how much Pierce Transit’s Olympia lobbyist is paid.

The issue came up last week when I wrote that the port and its lobbyist, Lisa Thatcher, had reached agreement on an increase in compensation. Thatcher agreed to $5,000 a month. That’s down from the $5,600 monthly the port had proposed in August.

Port commissioners rejected the $5,600, a 29 percent increase, and asked port executives to renegotiate.

In that blog, I quoted the port’s own comparisons of Thatcher’s pay to those other local governments

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Oct.
25th

Workers picket cold storage warehouses

Teamster Union members picketed outside cold storage warehouses operated by SCS Refrigerated Services in Tacoma and Algona today complaining that the company failed to negotiate in good faith for a new contract.

But management at the cold storage company said it was the union, Teamsters Local 117, that abandoned the bargaining process to strike the company just as a Tuesday mediation session was set to begin.

“SCS Refrigerated Services came to the mediation session in good faith with the hope of negotiating a mutually acceptable agreement. We were very disappointed in the union’s precipitous conduct,” the company said.

Tracey

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Oct.
25th

Office Depot opening new outlet in Puyallup this afternoon

Office Depot will this afternoon at 2 o’clock celebrate the opening of a new outlet at 3715 S. Meridian in Puyallup, .

At the ribbon-cutting ceremony, the Office Depot Foundation will make contributions to local nonprofit organizations including Communities In Schools of Puyallup, Helping Hand House and Mel Korum Family YMCA.

In addition, according to an Office Depot release, Shelly Schlumpf, executive director at the Puyallup/Sumner Chamber of Commerce, will deliver a welcome to dignitaries including Puyallup Mayor Kathy R. Turner; Roel van der Lugt, a representative of Congressman Adam Smith; and State Senator Jim Kastama.

According to store

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Oct.
24th

Washington joins the dog fight over the Space Shuttle

Don’t think the fight over a final resting place for the now-retired Space Shuttles is over.

NASA appeared to end that contest earlier this year when it awarded the four Space Shuttles to museums in New York, Los Angeles, Florida and Washington, D.C.

Seattle’s Museum of Flight won a consolation prize in that contest, a training mockup of the shuttle to display in a newly built display structure adjacent to Boeing Field.

But with the news that both the New York and Los Angeles museums are having trouble raising funds for appropriate display spaces for the shuttle, the contest is

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Oct.
24th

Boeing Washington passes 80,000 workers for the first time in nearly 12 years

Boeing Co. Washington employment passed 80,000 workers in Washington for the first time since 1999 in September.

New figures from the aerospace company show Boeing employed 80,666 workers in Washington at the end of September. That’s the highest figure since December of 1999 when the company had 80,900 workers on its payroll.

Since last December, the company has added 7,049 employees to its Washington workforce. The company is hiring as it increases production rates on all of its commercial airplanes made in Washington. Just last week, Boeing upped monthly production of its 737 at its Renton plant to 35 a

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