Greetings from Everett, Washington....home of the new 7E7!
Ok...it hasn't been announced yet, but will. I couldn't agree more with 'Ouboy79' that Boeing is trying to apply more pressure to the state of WA
to get what they want.
The state of Washington has a major problem: while it's great that none of the working folk have to pay a state income tax, the businesses we work for here pay what's called a B&O (Business and Occupation) tax which is excessive, and has been successful in driving companies into the ground or out of the state. Add on top of that property taxes, as well as unemployment insurance (hint: we're a heavy democratic-leaning state) and Boeing is at its wits end with WA
given the taxes they pay. And did I mention the little traffic problem we have here in Seattle? Right up there with NY, Atlanta, SF
, and LA
for congestion. Boeing needs to move their parts between plants (one located south of Seattle, the other about 2 miles from where this message is being written) and that's tough when the truck drivers have to sit in 1+ hours traffic every day.
Remember the well-hyped contest to win the Boeing HQ
office? Well, that was just a precursor to the 7E7 site contest we have today. Boeing execs. wanted to (and did so very well) fire a shot over the state' government's bow to show just how serious they were about getting reforms in B&O and other high-priced regulations.
The state of Washington was put on notice with the 7E7: reform now, give tax breaks, or whatever, or you lose jobs now and possibly much more in the future. There is growing speculation that if the 7E7 does get built elsewhere, other models built here will be relocated, and that will seriously damage the economy of this sate. So far, they've succeeded: turning the Democratic governor and legislature into Republican mode: make it easy for business or else face the music.
Here's where things stand today: we have a transportation package in place (gas tax just went up 5c on 7/1) among other taxes to pay for it, to hopefully alleviate the hot spots. Unemployment tax and reforms have been modified to suit Boeing, Everett (which IS
a deep sea port, unlike places in Arkansas) is getting modfications and a new rail line to improve the movement of parts and goods. Finally, saving the best for last, Gov. Lock and the legislature have a $3.2 billion check in the form of tax breaks (B&O and property) made payable to the Boeing Co., which I believe is good for 2-3 years.
Bottom line: Boeing will build the 7E7 in Washington state. It may be partly in Moses Lake, east of the Cascades, which has better and dryer weather, and Everett, or all in one place. Boeing wins: they finally got the tax breaks they wanted and the reforms they need out of our state. We'll get the jobs, and who knows, maybe the HQ
office will move back? I'm not holding my breath on that last one, though. Maybe it depends on United...see the other discussion thread on that subject!
And the winner for best actress is....REESE WITHERSPOON for 'Walk the Line'!!!!!!!!