Recommendations to Advance Regional Economic Strategy

Strengthening science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education in K-12 schools is on the list of legislative recommendations the Economic Development District Board will consider at its meeting on December 4.

Increasing access to cultural and education institutions like Everett's Imagine Children's Museum is the goal of the Regional Economic Strategy.

Increasing access to cultural institutions like the Imagine Children’s Museum in Everett is one of the Prosperity Partnership’s Action Items.

The legislative recommendations are tied directly to the Prosperity Partnership’s Action Items, which are approved annually and used as a work plan to advance the goals of the Regional Economic Strategy.

Specifically, the recommendation on STEM education calls for supporting the Partnership for Learning’s initiative to make Washington the first state to establish computer science education as a foundational skill in the K-12 system.

Also on the board’s agenda is a presentation on the maritime economic impact study and an industrial lands analysis update.

The EDD Board will meet on Wednesday, December 4, from 1 – 3 p.m., in the PSRC Boardroom.


Coming Up: Global Access Forum for Small Businesses

On Monday, December 9, the Export-Import Bank of the United States is holding a small business forum in Bothell.

Ex-Im Bank

The focus is on how Washington companies can increase international sales through protecting against the risk of nonpayment, extending credit to buyers, accessing vital working capital, and finding new markets and customers overseas.

The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) is the official export credit agency of the United States.

Ex-Im Bank’s mission is to assist in financing the export of U.S. goods and services to international markets.

The event, sponsored by Cascadia Community College, will feature Fred P. Hochberg, Chairman & President of the Ex-Im bank, along with members of Congress Suzan DelBene and Dave Reichert.

First established in 1934, Ex-Im Bank has supported more than $550 billion of U.S. exports, primarily to developing markets worldwide.

The Trade & Logistics cluster is a major contributor to the Puget Sound’s regional economy, with trade accounting for approximately 25% of the state’s gross domestic product, and 40% of all jobs in the state.

Maritime Industry Diverse, Increasingly Green

What’s behind the $30 billion a new economic impact study found that the maritime industry is pumping into the state’s economy each year?

The Northern Leader, designed by Seattle-based Jensen Maritime Consultants, is one of the greenest fishing ships afloat.

The Northern Leader, designed by Seattle-based Jensen Maritime Consultants, is one of the greenest fishing ships afloat.

A big driver is the diversity of this industry cluster – it covers everything from fishing and seafood products, which produces $8.6 billion in revenue annually, to maritime logistics and shipping, responsible for revenues of $3.7 billion per year.

Over 28% of the jobs in maritime come from the boat and ship building, repair and maintenance subsector.

Jobs in this subsector pay well — $70,500 per year – and the boats that workers build and repair are increasingly high-tech and very green.

For example, the 184-foot vessel Northern Leader was designed by Seattle-based Jensen Maritime Consultants to be the greenest fishing ship afloat.

It uses 100% LED lighting and a diesel electric power management system for top fuel efficiency.

Even its fish processing systems are designed to reduce waste and maximize value of the catch by utilizing the less valuable products.

In fact, at the Northern Leader’s christening (video) at J.M. Martimac Shipyard in Tacoma Governor Jay Inslee dubbed the Northern Leader the most innovative boat built in the last 20 years!


20th Anniversary of Freight Roundtable: Judy Clibborn to Speak

The Regional Freight Mobility Roundtable is celebrating its 20th anniversary on December 6.

State Representative Judy Clibborn Chairs the House Transportation Committee

State Representative Judy Clibborn Chairs the House Transportation Committee

The Roundtable began meeting in 1993 as a public-private forum to identify freight mobility needs in the region.

House Transportation Chair, Rep. Judy Clibborn will meet with the group and discuss recent developments in Olympia regarding transportation, as well as a preview of priorities for the upcoming 2014 legislative session.

Additionally, the PSRC Economic Development District will discuss the findings from the recent economic impact study for the Boeing 777x, and the Port of Bremerton will provide a briefing on recent developments as well.

The meeting will be on Friday, December 6, in the PSRC Boardroom at 1011 Western Ave, Seattle,  from 7:30 – 9 a.m.  For questions, or more information, please contact Sean Ardussi at 206-464-7080 or by email at


Solar Power Will Energize the Northwest

Perfect news for a sunny November day:  Adopting rooftop solar will get faster and cheaper for residents in Washington and Oregon, thanks to  $2 million award to the Washington State Department of Commerce from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

Solar power is getting a boost in the region.

Solar power is getting a boost in the region.

The award, from the Rooftop Solar Challenge program, will support the removal of hurdles for installers and increasing financing options for residents wishing to install rooftop solar photovoltaics (PV).

Seattle, Bellevue, Edmonds, and Ellensburg have already adopted new standards that standardized and streamlined permitting, interconnection with the electrical grid, zoning, and financing of rooftop solar systems.

The award includes funding to support 10 more jurisdictions in becoming “Northwest Solar Communities,” broadening the reach to more than two million people in the two-state region.

For an overview of current incentives by state, visit the Washington and Oregon incentive pages.

Maritime Industry: $30 Billion Annual Economic Impact

The Puget Sound region is well known for its thriving IT and aerospace industries.

The state's maritime industry paid nearly $4 billion in wages in 2012.

The state’s maritime industry paid nearly $4 billion in wages in 2012.

But many people don’t realize that maritime, one of the area’s oldest industries, continues to be an important engine of economic prosperity and growth – with an economic impact of $30 billion in 2012 alone.

A just-released study reveals that the heritage-rich maritime industry in Washington State is responsible for over 148,800 workers.

Maritime wages average $70,800 per year, compared to the statewide median income of $51,000. Industrywide, revenues have grown 6.4% per year on average.

The Washington State Maritime Cluster Economic Impact Study was conducted by Seattle-based research firm Community Attributes and commissioned by both the Economic Development Council of Seattle and King County and the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County.

The Puget Sound Regional Council helped sponsor the study to learn more about the needs of and the opportunities in the maritime cluster, which was chosen for specific strategy development in the Regional Economic Strategy.


Special Needs Transportation Committee to Meet

Special needs transportation fills a large and increasing mobility gap for the region’s residents.

The Special Needs Transportation Committee meets Wednesday to address a growing transportation need.

The Special Needs Transportation Committee meets Wednesday to address a growing transportation need.

According to the 2011 American Community Survey, approximately 47% of the region’s population falls into at least one of the special needs transportation demographic categories, indicating a potential for greater need for transportation services due to income status, age, or disability.

The Special Needs Transportation Committee will have its quarterly meeting at PSRC on Wednesday, November 20 at 9:30 AM. Its primary task will be to recommend the Draft 2015-2018 Coordinated Transit-Human Services Transportation Plan for inclusion in the Transportation 2040 Update.

The Coordinated Plan serves as a unified, comprehensive strategy for public transportation service delivery that identifies the transportation needs of individuals with disabilities, older adults, youth, and low-income individuals. The Coordinated Plan is the region’s implementing plan for special needs transportation.

Find out more about what the committee will discuss.