Monday, November 29, 2010

Why Attend The Public Officials Reception?

Join us at the Chamber’s upcoming Public Officials Holiday Reception on Wednesday, December 8 at the Pacific Grill Events Center--register here.

This year's reception will feature the largest number ever of public officials in attendance for the annual event. It will bring you face-to-face with your elected officials where you can converse about the future of business in Washington. You will be able to develop important relationships with decision makers.

These are not easy times, but working to develop a strong relationship with those serving our community will make a difference in how budget cuts will affect business at all levels. With a $5.7 billion deficit facing Washington state and budget cuts needing to be made in all levels of government, it is vitally important the business community have a voice.

It is equally important to thank those officials -- elected and appointed both -- for their service to our community. Public officials do not have a easy job and are a critical element in our local economic climate. Good public servants can make or break a community -- just ask the folks in Bell, CA.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Power and Weather

Tacoma Power advises all to read the information below regarding current and future weather conditions as they pertain to power availability and precautions.

In the event of an outage, please turn off as much load as possible, especially any 3 phase units, so that the cold load is minimized when we do restore power. Leave some lighting on so you have an indicator as to when power is restored.

If you would like more information, the most direct route to information is to call Dispatch at 253-502-8602.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Shoreline Update: Now for the Hard Stuff

The Tacoma Planning Commission held their first session focused on responding to public comments about the preliminary draft Shoreline Master Program (SMP) Update Wednesday night.

On the agenda: marine buffers and exemptions.

Staff explained that the complexity of the proposed SMP Update partially occurs because of the attempt to integrate the existing Critical Areas Protection Ordinance (CAPO) and the Shoreline Master Program. This complexity is especially relevant in the issue of marine buffers. The Chamber expects more discussion of this issue. Commissioners were very interested in understanding where the proposals go beyond CAPO or SMP into new or amended regulation.
In the presentation about exemptions, staff acknowledged there is a problem as written to understand how exemptions would be handled. Among proposed fixes to this issue are: decoupling exemption from the Shoreline Substantial Development Permit requirements, standardization of forms, use of existing studies for documentation and a quest for other suggestions, especially from the Port of Tacoma.

More follow-on meetings to examine responses and input from Commissioners are expected to address the myriad issues in the proposed SMP Update.

The Chamber shared with Planning Commissioners its objectives for these issues, including many more still to be examined, in a letter and attached “track changes/red line” version of the preliminary draft. The letter is here and the changes version is here.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Political Activity In America

There is a great deal of political activity around the country and in the local area.

FEDERAL: Rep. Boehner was selected as the new Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. Nancy Pelosi will become the Minority Leader of the House Democrats.

ALASKA: It has been announced Senator Murkowski (did I spell that correctly?) will retain her seat after losing the Republican primary earlier this year and winning the general election as a write-in candidate. It appears she is increasing her current lead of 1,500 votes. Expect a recount unless the second place candidate Republican Joe Miller concedes the race as he indicated he might do.

PUYALLUP: The race in the 25th Legislative District continues to be close with challenger Hans Zeiger ahead by 36 votes. Current Representative Dawn Morrell had the lead for a short period of time, but lost the lead a couple of days ago. There will be a recount.

Horizons 2011 Economic Forecast Event: Get Clued

South County Division Signs Skills Center Resolution

Is There Enough Windstorm Damage to Qualify to Aid?

As we do whenever Mother Nature throws a tantrum, we're looking for businesses that may have suffered damage or loss due to Monday's wind storm.

If enough damage is identified, Pierce County may qualify for state or federal disaster declarations, and the attendant small business aid that goes along with it. A minimum of five injured businesses is required to trigger the SBA’s EIDL program.

If you or hear of or talk with businesses in the next week or two that suffered economic loss due to the windstorm, contact Rob Allen, 253.798.6915, Economic Development Specialist, Pierce County.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Help Make DREAM Come True for Top Local Business

Nominate a business from our community for the U.S. Chamber's 2011 DREAM BIG Small Business of the Year--the winner receives a $10,000 cash prize!

Visit the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Small Business Summit webpage to enter your choice. Nominations are due by January 7, 2011.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Election Update!

Senator Patty Murray has increased her lead over Dino Rossi from 27,464 votes to 45,661 votes. LiveWire is calling this race in favor of Senator Murray.

The race for the 25th Legislative District's State Representative between Dawn Morrell and Hans Zeiger remains close with Zeiger trailing by 100 votes. LiveWire is predicting a recount and expects the winner will not be known for at least another week.

Tami Green has pulled further ahead in the race for the 28th Legislative District State Representative. With Green’s 921 vote lead over Paul Wagemann, LiveWire is calling this race for Green.

Check here for Pierce County up-to-date results

Check here for Washington State up-to-date results

Making Money with New Money

Tacoma-Pierce Co. Chamber members qualify for the member price of $12 and should so note that on their registration.                                                                                                                                               

Chamber Scores on Ballots--The Final Count

For up-to-date results for this year's elections, check out these links:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

More Election Results for Close Races

Senator Patty Murray continues to increase her lead against Dino Rossi. She now has a 27,464 vote lead.

Congressman Rick Larsen has taken the lead from challenger John Koster. He narrowly holds the 2nd congressional district seat by a 507 vote margin.

25th Legislative District State Rep. Dawn Morrell has retaken the lead from challenger Hans Zeiger by a mere 16 votes.

28th Legislative District State Rep. Tami Green is beginning to pull away from challenger Paul Wagemann with a 637 vote lead. Her seatmate Troy Kelley appears to be heading to victory after a difficult race again Steve O'Ban.

Liquor Measures Both Die

The latest results from the Secretary of State's office show the measures to close the state liquor stores and allow the private market to sell spirits and hard liquor have both failed.

I-1100 was close on election night, but appears to have stumbled and not recovered. The 'no' votes have gained a lead of approximately 65,000 votes which will be difficult to gain ground on.

Pierce County Results as of today @ 5:00 pm

The latest results from the Pierce County Auditor's office and Secretary of State have established a trend showing those candidates leading last night -- despite the narrow margin -- will likely maintain their lead for the remaining vote counts over the next few days.

Senator Patty Murray has a 25,000 vote lead over Dino Rossi statewide. While Rossi has a lead in Pierce County, it remains at a 3,000 vote difference. Without growing traction in Pierce County and other counties outside of King County, it will be difficult for him to win.

Dispite currently losing Pierce County to Dick Muri, U.S. Representative Adam Smith has maintained his lead throughout the entire district.

Challenger Hans Zeiger's lead over state Representative Dawn Morrell has dropped to only 24 votes now.

Laurie Jinkins has a lead of 2,000 votes against opponent Jake Fey, which has not changed substantially from last night.

Pierce County Councilmember Shawn Bunney leads in his home county against opponent Cathy Dahlquist, a fellow Republican. Her lead in her home county of King County is larger by 2,800 votes allowing her to maintain a lead of 1,700 votes total.

Go to the following links to see the most up-to-date results on this year's election:

Pierce County Election Results

Washington State Election Results

Latest Election Information coming soon

Pierce County is expected to release their latest vote counts soon. Two rounds of counts will be forthcoming tonight.

The first round will be at 5:00 pm and the second round will be at 8:00 pm.

This information is important since it will likely establish the trends for the rest of the votes coming in over the next few days.

More information soon...

Chamber Scores on Ballots