Commissioners invest further into economic development action
With consensus from the interested entities in the Othello region about targeting food and beverage processing plants received, Adams County Economic Development Director Stephen McFadden requested the Adams County Commissioners fund the additional $25,000 for the cost comparative analysis by the Boyd Company.
After a few weeks of deliberation, the commissioners informed McFadden Wednesday, April 22, they had decided to fund the study.
Though not officially voted on at the Wednesday meeting, the commissioners informed him they would be taking official action Monday. The advanced warning was so McFadden could begin the process of contracting Boyd for the additional study.
This will put the amount of money invested by entities within Adams County at more than $100,000 since the Adams County Development Council signed a contract for $78,000 last fall.
“I think we need to finish the project,” Commissioner Jeff Stevens said.
There was some discussion among the commissioners about the potential for additional funding support from the ACDC, but it was decided the county would bear all of the cost.
“Whether you pay for it at this level or you try to get it from ACDC, it’s the same money.” Commissioner John Marshal said. “I think we ought to just go ahead and do it and leave their funds alone.”
The money will come out of fund No. 122, the economic development fund of the Adams County budget.
Since the release of the initial reports from Boyd and their media campaign, McFadden reported several groups had requested copies complete reports. The biggest surge in requests came after a release in American Shipper April 21.
“The Boyd Company has been lighting up my email since yesterday morning,” McFadden said Wednesday.
He said by the end of the day Tuesday, he had received notifications that nine requests for the reports had been made.
“And since 6 this morning, Boyd has emailed me another seven,” McFadden said.
With funding secured for the food processor study, McFadden also informed commissioners about a business recruitment opportunity he was recently offered. He was invited by the Yakima County Development Association to join them on a joint trip to the largest food processor show, scheduled for September.
“There will be guaranteed appointments, six to 10 business looking to site in Washington state,” McFadden said. “So I will have the food processing report from Boyd by the time I go there.”
The initial reports have already generated substantial interest in Adams County.
“We have leads we wouldn’t know how to get, without having that report out there,” McFadden said.
With the recent coordination between the multitude of players in the county, Stevens expressed his excitement for the next few years.
“I think this whole Boyd study has brought about a county-wide cooperative effort that hasn’t happened. I think the last time some large economic cooperative happened would have been back when the irrigation came into our area,” he said. “That would have been the last great economic development boom that Adams County’s seen where pretty much the county was together on it at the time.”
From the Othello Outlook Tyler Fryberger II 5/8/2015
Legislative Reception for Senator Schoesler
The Adams County Development Council (ACDC) and the Columbia Basin Railroad hosted the first Adams County Legislative Reception Tuesday February 17th, at the State Capitol.
Around 40 people gathered in the Columbia Room of the Legislative Building as the development council presented its Inaugural Distinguished Service Award to Senate Majority Leader Mark Schoelser (R-Ritzville)
Senator Schoesler, who has served in the state legislature for 23 years, was selected to receive ACDC’s Distinguished Service Award for his continued commitment to the residents of Adams County and the Ninth Legislative District.
His distinguished career as a member of the state’s leadership team has grown dynamically since he was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1992. Said Pat Simmons, the current Chairman of ACDC.
Port of Moses Lake to expand Foreign Trade Zone
MOSES LAKE – Businesses in Adams County will soon be able to benefit from the Port of Moses Lake’s designation as a Foreign Trade Zone, pending the approval of an application to expand the trade zone’s service area.
Commissioners authorized port officials to file the application during a meeting earlier this week.
The port operates as FTZ No. 203, providing tenants with the financial benefits in imports and exports that accompany a FTZ – including allowing companies to store goods duty-free, delay tax and customs payments and lower inventory costs.
The FTZ adopted an Alternative Site Framework a few years back, which allows other areas in Central Washington to benefit from the port’s FTZ status, port Executive Director Pat Jones said.
“About six years ago, when the FTZ was expanded all of the counties that were eligible to take advantage of that did so with one exception – Adams County,” he said. “Adams County has now decided they would like to be a member of that group.”
Currently, businesses in Grant, Chelan, Douglas, Franklin, Lincoln, Kittitas, Benton, Columbia, Okanogan, Walla Walla and Yakima counties have access to the FTZ’s benefits, according to information on the port’s website.
Advantages of using a FTZ include duty deferrals, delaying payment of duties on goods that enter the U.S. market; duty exemptions, no duties or quota charges on imported goods that are later re-exported, inverted tariffs and the reduction of duties if a lower tariff rate applies to the finished product rather than the tariff rates of the individual product’s parts.
By Tiffany Sukola,
Herald staff writer Columbia Basin Herald