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2013 State Legislative Priorities

The Federal Way Chamber of Commerce represents approximately 500 businesses employing an estimated 25,000 workers in the South Sound Region.  Our vision is to create a strong local economy through business advocacy in the South Sound Region. Federal Way is the 5th largest city in King County and 11th largest in the State and recognized collectively and strategically vital to international trade and commerce in our state, we have unanimously developed the following 2013 legislative priorities: 

 

Transportation: 

A fully functional South Sound economic transportation corridor is critical for our economic vitality, creating sustainable jobs, and moving goods to and from one of the largest distribution hubs in Washington. The Federal Way Chamber of Commerce continues to support the full funding and construction of the I-5 / SR 18 interchange and the SR 18 / SR 161 intersection, also known as the “Triangle Project.” 


We recognize that we are part of an economic interdependent region and state, with diverse needs and interests, and that no one area can progress without another. We encourage the state legislature to formulate a transportation package for submission to the voters that merges infrastructure needs of highways, mass transit, bridges, ferries, and transportation corridors. Any legislation should recognize our need to move both products and people in a manner that enhances our economic capacity. The package should seek to protect our many years of investment by adequately funding current maintenance and operations needs along with expanding our transit network for future growth opportunities. Legislation should include recognition of key corridors such as I-5, SR 167, SR 509 and other interconnecting mass transit and structural improvements.  


We recognize that to gain broad support for funding will be a difficult, yet crucial, step in preparation of a solution. We encourage the legislature to consider a balanced approach from its array of revenue options that does not diminish our competitive position but seeks to enhance.


Federal Way Chamber of Commerce recognizes the necessary investment of mass transit / light rail to meet the growing demands of a growing residential and business community.  We welcome Sound Transit’s investment in South King County and encourage Sound Transit to evaluate an alignment that is favorable to economic development and commuter demands.
 

Business Climate and Global Competitiveness: 

Puget Sound is engaged in a constant national and global competition for our precious employers and revenue generators.   Puget Sound’s efforts to retain its position as a key competitor in a global economy mandates that policies be embraced which stimulate economic competitiveness and do not burden our private sector businesses to balance a deficit. 


FWCC recognizes Port activities in Puget Soundas significant to the overall health or our region and encourages a closer look at developing regional cooperation between our two ports. 


The Federal Way Chamber of Commerce recognizes the power of destination dollars for our region and supports reinstatement of the State’s Department of Tourism and/or providing financial support to private sector entities. 
 

Education/Workforce Development:                                                                                                                                                  
AddressWashington’s constitutional obligation to amply fund basic K-12 public education.


Protect business and individual economic prosperity by adequately funding the community and technical college system.


Ensure students have access to post-secondary education and training by keeping tuition affordable and maintaining financial aid programs.


Reduce or minimize unfunded mandates to insure educational requirements contribute to improving outcomes and academic achievement.  As an example many Community Colleges are finding that complying with new building requirements for High Performance Buildings is adding 1-3% to the costs of improving aging campus facilities. This can amount to significant fiscal impact on each project with no state money provided to offset these additional costs.    


For more information, contact Patricia Mullen at (253) 838-2605 ext 105 or via email at pmullen@federalwaychamber.com