Monday, September 26, 2011

Alaska's Future

Alaska is an attainable market for Tacoma-Pierce County firms. Why?
  1. Most cargo for Alaska moves through the Port of Tacoma.
  2. Alaska is the Port’s third largest trading partner.
  3. There is a lively group of local businesses promoting trade with Alaska.
  4. The Chamber works to support Alaska development.
  5. Historically, Tacoma has been a source for Alaska.
As part of the Chamber’s promotional effort, its Alaska Committee forms a trade delegation for the annual Alaska State Chamber Conference and Trade Show. This year, eight delegates traveled to Talkeetna to strengthen the economic partnership between our communities.

The Alaska State Chamber is unabashedly proactive seeking to develop their state’s resources. They recognize the need to diversify and strengthen their economy, currently overly dependent on oil. Hot on the Alaska agenda is the issue of lessening their state tax on oil. Flow through the pipeline is lessening. Development of proven oil reserves continues to be delayed and blocked, either by outside advocates or by a bureaucratic glacier.

This issue was highlighted during the conference’s teleconference with Cong. Don Young and Sen. Mark Begich. When asked about Washington’s Sen. Cantwell’s opposition to development of the Pebble Mine, Cong. Young said he would encourage the Senator to address instead the environmental challenges in her state at Hanford.
Along with many other panels and presentations about developing Alaska and helping its business environment, the Talkeetna Chamber of Commerce supported the conference with excellence and kept the businesses downtown open past their tourist season for visiting delegates. Part of the fun is evidenced by the Talkeetna-chic themed annual dinner where delegates wore tuxes with duct tape bowties and fur caps and gowns with mukluks.

The Chamber is continuing its advocacy for Alaska’s development, as with the recent forum at the Transportation Club of Tacoma featuring Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell. You are invited to join the Chamber’s Alaska Committee. For more info, contact Gary Brackett or 256-682-1720.




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