King County, Port of Seattle leaders pledge cooperation

June 23, 2012

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 6 a.m. June 23, 2012

King County and Port of Seattle leaders sat down for a rare joint meeting Monday and proclaimed “an opening act” to a period of increased cooperation between the organizations.

King County Council members and Port of Seattle commissioners discussed the need for regional collaboration to bolster the economy in the Puget Sound region. In the meeting — the only joint meeting between the groups in recent memory — officials received briefings on long-term plans for both organizations, economic development and international trade.

“Today is an historic occasion for which I say: ‘it’s about time,’” council Vice Chairwoman Jane Hague said in a statement. “In our increasingly complex economy and society, I think it’s more important than ever that our bodies talk together and coordinate our efforts.”

The council and commissioners also adopted a joint agreement calling for strengthening bonds between King County and the Port of Seattle. Officials pledged to seek opportunities to form joint state and federal legislative agendas, partner on environmental initiatives and transportation planning, and collaborate on economic development and tourism.

“The next 25 years offer so much opportunity for King County, so let’s be smart and strategic in the economic and environmental decisions we make today,” Port of Seattle Commission President Gael Tarleton said.

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