The legislative session adjourned again without a comprehensive transportation funding plan. The bipartisan SR 167 Completion Coalition that included the Port of Tacoma, businesses of the port, labor and civic leaders from across the state built a strong case but did not convince the Legislature.
We cannot falter now. We must still fight for a transportation package, and we learned this session that we cannot do it alone.
The ports of Tacoma and Seattle, which are among the largest collection of port facilities in the nation, must continue to follow through on a Port to Port initiative. The business community and all their skilled workers who depend on a successful Washington trade industry, understand that many of the corporations that use one port also have facilities at the other.
It is time for the ports, business, labor, and cites big and small to come together in a new coalition to move our state forward. We must fund the “last mile” that connects our industrial and manufacturing corridors to these vital facilities.
We have our plans, and we know the costs of what must be funded. Let’s work together to keep our ports, businesses and state competitive in a global marketplace. If we do nothing we get left behind.
(Lewis is the mayor of Auburn.)