I've lived in the Longview/Kelso area my entire life. I've seen a lot of changes in our town, and a lot have not been very good. I see the need for some positive changes. With the end of the recession still out of sight, Cowlitz County and our state as a whole need to think about what we can do to prosper.
Trade is an easy answer. Our state trade economy is worth $111 billion annually, and Washington exports total $53.2 billion every year. Even more staggering is the fact that 41 percent of Washington jobs are trade dependent.
Millennium Bulk Terminals is working to build a world-class, international port facility here. Longview has the opportunity to be a thriving global port, and play a major leader in pulling Washington out of the recession.
So let's stop fighting over this coal-export project and get our region's economy on the path to recovery. I am glad to be a part of a company working to make that happen. Remember that families are hurting and these jobs are just the light at the end of the tunnel we've been looking for.