Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Seaport Alliance Takes Another Step Forward

By Mark Edward Nero

Commissioners from the ports of Tacoma and Seattle voted June 5 to submit a final agreement on the proposed Northwest Seaport Alliance to the Federal Maritime Commission for approval.

The agreement outlines the Northwest Seaport Alliances governance charter and management.

The Northwest Seaport Alliance, which Seattle and Tacoma announced in October 2014, would unify the two ports marine cargo terminal investments, operations, planning and marketing in order to compete with other ports and attract more marine cargo to the region.

While the ports would remain separate organizations that retain ownership of their respective assets, theyd form a port development authority to manage the container, breakbulk, auto and some bulk terminals in Seattle and Tacoma.

The authority would be governed jointly by the two port commissions.

With todays vote our two ports take another step toward becoming a united cargo gateway that will compete globally for more trade, Port of Seattle commission co-president Stephanie Bowman said.

The commissioners say they expect to hire John Wolfe, the current Port of Tacoma chief executive officer, as the CEO of The Northwest Seaport Alliance following the FMCs approval of the agreement. Wolfe would lead both organizations through a transition period of up to five years.

Text of the final agreement and other related news is available on both the Port of Tacoma and Port of Seattle websites.