News Press Releases Whatcom County's Gateway Terminal Project

A new political alliance forming?

Ferndale, WA - John Koster, Snohomish County Councilman and candidate for U.S. Congress, spoke on Saturday to more than 275 Whatcom County citizens who support the building of the Gateway Terminal Project at Cherry Point.

 Koster, an advocate for the Terminal and the new jobs it will bring to Northwest Washington, said, "It's time for all of us who want jobs to stand up to environmental extremists who are stifling economic recovery."

 Koster noted the traditional alliance between labor unions and environmentalists and the Democratic Party is being torn apart by projects like the Gateway Terminal.  Labor union members and leaders including past NW Washington Central Labor Council President Emeritus David Warren, were in attendance at Saturday's meeting.

 "These men and women from blue collar unions are concerned about their livelihoods and their families.  They are angry, and rightfully so, at the environmental radicals who are attempting to derail the Gateway project," said Koster.  "Labor union members in Whatcom County must understand that to vote the Democratic Party-line has become a vote to obstruct commerce, stifle growth and promote a job-killing 'green' agenda."



October 15 CAPR Meeting, Ferndale, Wa

The meeting was moderated by Citizens Alliance for Property Rights (Whatcom Chapter) leader Ron Reimer.  Appearing on the panel with Koster were State Senator and candidate for Whatcom County Executive Doug Ericksen, Labor leader David Warren, Hydrologist and Environmental Consultant Steve Negebauer, Attorney Perry Eskridge, and Financial Advisor and Talk Radio Host Dick Donahue.

 Much of the day's discussion focused on efforts by obstructionist groups seeking to delay or block construction of the project through legal maneuvering.

 "We have a chance here to move a state of the art project forward that will meet the highest environmental standards and provide hundreds of jobs. Yet the environmental radicals are at it again,  bringing in trial lawyers and law firms from out of town to assist in derailing the Gateway Terminal, and with it, Whatcom County economic recovery," said Koster.

 Koster, a conservative Republican, observed that far too many Democratic elected officials appear to be joined at the hip to the environmental lobby..."yet these same folks are first in line to complain about jobs going overseas," said Koster. "Call them what you want-'liberals', 'progressives', or 'radicals'-they are driving a stake through the heart of the U.S. economy and literally forcing projects and industry off the North American continent," Koster continued.

 The Gateway Terminal is a $600-$700 million privately funded project designed for loading bulks commodities such as coal and grain to Asian markets. Construction of the terminal will provide Washington with between 3,500 and 4,500 jobs and generate about $75 to $92 million a year in tax revenues. Operations will create about 850 to 1250 permanent family wage jobs and about $8 to $11 million a year in tax revenues.

 While publically proclaiming his support for the Gateway Terminal project, Rick Larsen (Koster's Democratic opponent for Congress) voted for even more regulation of the U.S. Coal Industry as recently as two weeks ago. "It's kind of like John Kerry voting 'for the bill before he voted against it'. This is another example of the kind of politics people are fed up with," said Koster.

 "It was heartening to see a Labor leader of David Warren's stature participating in the CAPR meeting on Saturday.  David and I share much in common and I look forward to working with him and blue collar union members on creating jobs and bringing economic prosperity to Whatcom County," said Koster.


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