SEPTEMBER 26, 2017


Port gets federal approval for ramp leading to Centralia Station Development

Graham Perednia, September 20, 2017, The Chronicle

The Port of Centralia announced Wednesday a new ramp off the Mellen Street Interstate 5 overpass has been approved by the Federal Highway Administration, paving the way for the development of Centralia Station.

It was the final permit needed before construction planning for the proposed 43-acre multi-use development could begin. The development will likely feature Fred Meyer as the anchor tenant.

“It was always going to be approved. It was just an issue of going through the process,” Port Executive Director Kyle Heaton said after the regular Wednesday meeting of port commissioners.

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Port of Benton wins $300,000 to help Richland start-ups

Tri-City Herald, September 22, 2017, Tri-City Herald

The U.S. Department of Commerce has awarded a $300,000 grant to the Port of Benton to support start-ups in the Tri-Cities Research District in Richland.

The port is one of 42 organizations in 28 states to receive more than $17 million through the federal Economic Development Administration’s Regional Innovation Strategies program. The program was authorized by Congress in 2010 and has awarded money since 2014.

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Potash project open house Thursday well attended

Dan Hammock, September 16, 2017, The Daily World

About 100 people went to the Hoquiam High School Commons Thursday to learn more about a proposed potash storage and shipping facility at the Port of Grays Harbor from the company behind the proposal, BHP.

The Terminal 3 facility, located just east of Bowerman Airport, would include enough rail lines that the 177-car trains expected up to eight times a week would not have to tie up outside rail lines, said BHP Operations Manager Garry Miller. The total length of the trains coming to the Port would be about 1.6 miles long, he said.

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Centralia Council, Port Commissioner candidates divided on Centralia Station

Graham Perednia, September 19, 2017, The Chronicle

The economic environment of Centralia is on the verge of a massive change if the Centralia Station project comes to fruition; however, candidates and incumbents pursuing port and city offices in the general election are finding themselves on different sides of the issue.

The project, spearheaded by the Port of Centralia, includes plans for a major retailer as the anchor tenant — Fred Meyer has expressed interest — with 40 to 50 smaller storefronts and other businesses and offices surrounding it.

Port Commission candidate Jordan Peabody said he believes the station will help bring people into downtown Centralia after they get off the freeway to shop at Fred Meyer or eat at one of the restaurants.

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Heritage Distilling to open production/retail space in Tumwater

Gateway news services, September 20, 2017, The News Tribune

Gig Harbor-based Heritage Distilling Company, Inc. has entered into an agreement with Craft District, LLC to occupy more than 11,000 square feet of production and retail space in the new Craft Brewing and Distilling Center in Tumwater beginning in 2018, the company announced Tuesday.

The new Heritage Distilling production facility will feature a custom-made twin 2,000 liter pot still system (4,000 liters total) with reflux column, along with multiple gin and micro stills. Capacity will be 150,000 proof gallons per year, the current Washington state maximum for craft licensees.

“We are thrilled to be part of the new Craft Brewing and Distilling Center in Tumwater, and to be an anchor tenant working with South Puget Sound Community College and others,” Justin Stiefel, CEO of Heritage Distilling Co., said in a release. “This area will be a center of excellence for the region and the nation for a diverse number of distilling and brewing certificate and degree programs. We thank Craft District, LLC, South Puget Sound Community College, the City of Tumwater, and the Port of Olympia, among many others, who have worked very hard to bring this vision to reality.

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Mattawa trying to turn itself into a destination

September 22, 2017, iFiberOne

Big plans to better the Mattawa community are in the mix. The small farming town wants to turn itself into a destination on several levels.

Right now, plans are in the works to lease and buy land near the high school on Boundary Avenue and Government Road for the development of a new community center. Port of Mattawa Assistant Director Lars Leland explains what the center would be purposed for, “it wouldn’t be for just weddings and parties, it would be used for everything.”

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Reporter’s Notebook:  Grandview port district keeps working on attracting business

Mai Hoang, September 24, 2017, Yakima Herald

When Walmart opened its distribution center in Grandview, bringing hundreds of jobs to the Lower Valley in 2004, many considered it one of the Valley’s most successful business recruitment efforts.

Whether Grandview, population 11,000, can garner another economic development success that size remains to be seen.

“Recruitment projects like the Walmart distribution center are few and far between,” said Jonathan Smith, executive director of the Yakima County Development Association, the county’s economic development arm.

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Port of Seattle opposes Trump travel ban in U.S. Supreme Court filing

The B-Town Blog

The Port of Seattle on Wednesday (Sept. 20) filed a “friend of the court” brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to agree with lower courts that have blocked enforcement of President Donald J. Trump’s so-called “travel ban.”

The Port said it is the first port in the nation to join the Supreme Court case in support of the parties challenging the travel ban.

“We have a moral and economic obligation to address this critical issue,” said Courtney Gregoire, a Port Commissioner. “America is great because we are a nation of immigrants. President Trump’s travel ban also causes economic harm to our airport, our region and our state.”

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Penalty decision could come in November in lawsuit against Port of Kingston

Richard Walker, September 18, 2017, Kitsap Daily News

A Kitsap County Superior Court judge could determine in November the penalties the Port of Kingston will pay a Kingston resident for failing to fulfill her public records requests in 2014-15.

Attorneys for the port and the plaintiff, Tania Issa, said a hearing date of Nov. 7 is proposed, but that date depends on the court schedule. The port was ordered Feb. 10 to pay $75,000 to Beth Brewster and $89,000 in attorney’s fees in a similar lawsuit.

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DeLong v. Long for Port of Peninsula

Amy Nile, September 20, 2017, Chinook Observer

The two candidates have similar last names but the hopefuls for Port of Peninsula commissioner have different approaches to planning and paying for public projects.

Incumbent Mary DeLong, the recently retired port manager, is competing for a six-year term against former Bank of the Pacific President Dennis A. Long.

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Harbor first stop on lawmaker ‘listening tour’

September 20, 2017, The North Coast News

Ocean Shores had several seats at the forum recently when more than a dozen state representatives, including Speaker of the House Frank Chopp, came to the Aberdeen Rotary Log Pavilion for the first stop on a listening tour.

“It was great to see so many local leaders in the same room with lawmakers from around the state,” said Rep. Mike Chapman, whose 24th District includes the north and eastern section of Grays Harbor, including the North Beach and Ocean Shores.

Chapman helped organize the event on Sept. 6 and served as host in between speakers. “We had a great discussion about jobs, education, health care and ideas on making this an even better place to work and raise a family.”

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Candidates diverge on direction:  Port of Port Angeles incumbent, challenger discuss issues at forum

Paul Gottlieb, September 23, 2017, Peninsula Daily News

Sequim-area Port of Port Angeles commissioner candidates Michael Cobb and Colleen McAleer charted different courses on the importance of recreational boating at a forum this week.

“It is important, but our primary mission is to help our economy,” McAleer, the Sequim-area District 1 incumbent completing her first four-year term, said Wednesday night at a forum hosted by Clallam County Democrats in Port Angeles before the Nov. 7 general election.

“What motivates me is the poor and the young people who don’t have jobs,” she said during the nearly hour-long question-and-answer session.

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State board nixes Kalama methanol permits

Marissa Luck, September 18, 2017, The Daily News

In a major setback for the Kalama methanol plant, a state board has reversed two big permits Northwest Innovation Works needs for its $1.8 billion project.

The decision could create significant delays for the methanol project and may call into question the entire environmental impact statement the port and county spent years developing.

The state shoreline hearings board reversed the methanol plant’s substantial development permit and the conditional use permit in a summary judgment signed Friday. The parties involved were notified of the decision Monday afternoon.

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Permits invalidated for big Washington state methanol plant

Phuong Le, September 19, 2017, San Francisco Chronicle

U.S. environmental groups opposed to the Pacific Northwest becoming an international fossil fuels gateway scored a major victory when a Washington state board invalidated two permits for a $2 billion project to manufacture methanol from natural gas and export it to China.

Last week’s decision by the state Shorelines Hearings Board is a setback for the project by Northwest Innovation Works on the Columbia River in the small city of Kalama.

The China-backed consortium wants to build the refinery that would produce up to 10,000 metric tons a day of methanol from natural gas piped in from North American sources. The methanol sent to China would be used to make plastics and other consumer goods.

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Port of Chehalis Commissioners express frustration after agencies recommend less acreage for regional general permit

Justyna Tomtas, September 19, 2017, The Chronicle

More than a year after the Port of Chehalis learned that the renewal of its regional general permit would likely see a delay, commissioners expressed frustration at a meeting last week after the state Department of Ecology and the Army Corps of Engineers advised the port to limit the amount of acres it is requesting for the filling of wetlands on its property.

The regional general permit, which lapsed in September of last year, is required for the filling of wetlands on Port of Chehalis property.

In its application for the permit renewal, the port bumped up its request to 40 acres because commissioners want to have the ability to use all of the wetlands credits it has at its Pleasant Valley Mitigation Site. The increase from the original 25 acres of wetlands approved in the first permit has been met with pushback from the Environmental Protection Agency, the state Department of Ecology and the Quinault Indian Nation.

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Saturday Thumbs

September 23, 2017, The Daily News

The state Shorelines Hearings Board reversed the decision to give Northwest Innovations two key permits to continue the methanol project.

Just like Millennium Bulk Terminals, the permitting process Northwest Innovations has gone through so far, has clearly been politicized.

The state of Washington has proved, yet again, to be anti-business. No wonder is looking to build a second headquarters for 50,000 new workers in another state.

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Cold, hard cash:  Portland company picks Grandview for $30M storage warehouse

Wendy Culverwell, September 14, 2017, Tri-City Herald

One of the nation’s leading cold storage companies is building a second outpost in the Mid-Columbia.

Portland-based Henningsen Cold Storage will build a $30 million cold storage facility in the Port of Grandview’s Byam Business Park. The company has a similar facility in Richland.

The company will pay $1.3 million for about 26 acres of ready-to-build land near Interstate 82 and Stover Road, close to the Mid Valley Chrysler dealership. The port announced the deal Thursday.

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Former fruit warehouse to shine – with diamonds

Mike Irwin, September 25, 2017, Wenatchee World

The city’s industrial sector is set to sparkle.

A San Francisco company announced Friday it will transform a former fruit-packing warehouse into a diamond-making foundry, hire up to 96 employees and begin cultivating the gems by June of next year.

Diamond Foundry, which “grows” diamonds under intense heat and pressure, said it has leased from Stemilt Growers three acres and the warehouse, which was damaged in the 2015 Sleepy Hollow Fire and rebuilt. The 56,000-square-foot warehouse is located in an industrial district along North Miller Street.

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Gone fishing. . .Port View

Bob McChesney, September 16, 2017, Edmonds

The Port of Edmonds has a long tradition of serving local fishers. Our marina is located near multiple marine areas and provides the perfect launch pad for recreational fishing.

Marine Area 9 includes Edmonds and extends west through the Admiralty Inlet. This area is easily accessed by boat and includes both open and protected waters with salmon and bottomfish. Marine Area 10 is located just south of the Port of Edmonds and provides an abundant supply of bottomfish as well as resident and migratory salmon.

To the north of Edmonds sits Marine Area 8-2, an ideal setting for small boats to catch salmon migrations and search for local bottomfish.

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Lyons Ferry emerges from challenging years

Dian Ver Valen, September 17, 2017,

The past 18 months have been stressful at Lyons Ferry Marina — busy beyond the usual challenges of operating a boating, fishing, camping, shopping and dining business on the Snake River.

Jim and Angela MacArthur, closing in on their ninth year of running this facility owned by the U.S. Corps of Engineers and leased by the Port of Columbia, are tired.

“A lot of people don’t realize how much work this is,” Jim said on Tuesday, seated in the Snake River Grill dining area and motioning with his hand to include not only the restaurant but also the KOA Kampstore, campground and marina just outside.

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Port staff, board contemplate buying Jensen Boat Yard

Hayley Day, September 20, 2017, San Juan Journal

A roughly 100-year-old San Juan Island business may be sold to the Port of Friday Harbor.

“I know what needs to be done, but it doesn’t make it any easier,” said Jeri Ahrenius, after the Wednesday, Sept. 13 port meeting. “I want to make sure it serves boaters in the community.”

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Soil samples to inform final design of new south jetty at Point Hudson

Cydney McFarland, September 20, 2017, Peninsula Daily News

The Port of Port Townsend has taken its first visible steps toward a design of a new south jetty at Point Hudson.

The entrance to Point Hudson was blocked Tuesday night and will be blocked again tonight while crews gather soil samples to gain information for a final design of a new jetty.

A barge crew from Seattle-based Mott MacDonald Engineering is performing subsurface investigative borings at the marina entrance.

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Derelict-boat patrols may run weekly

Chris Tucker, September 20, 2017,

In an effort to prevent derelict vessels from breaking apart on shorelines, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office may increase its patrols from a monthly basis to every week.

Port of Port Townsend Commissioner Steve Tucker spoke about the changes during the Sept. 13 port meeting.

Tucker said the Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee works hard to protect shorelines, and said it is “disappointing” when a boat breaks up on shore.

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Port of Port Townsend eyes adding debt to fund replacement of Point Hudson breakwater

Cydney McFarland, September 22, 2017, Peninsula Daily News

Port of Port Townsend commissioners have agreed to incur debt up to the agency’s capacity, if necessary, to fix the Point Hudson jetty.

Commissioners unanimously approved Wednesday directing staff to move forward on the process of issuing a limited tax general obligation municipal bond to fund replacement of the south breakwater at the Point Hudson Marina.

The south jetty project is estimated to cost $3,067,000. Construction is scheduled for July 2018, according to the port’s capital projects plan.

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‘Fully intent on moving forward’ with Terminal 5, West Seattle Chamber of Commerce’s State of the Port lunch told

Tracy Record, September 14, 2017, West Seattle Blog

It’s a fall tradition – the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce‘s monthly lunch gets a “State of the Port” briefing at port-owned Jack Block Park on the northeast WS shore.

This year’s keynoter was port commissioner John Creighton, speaking solo before taking questions. He is running for re-election in November after 12 years on the commission.

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PSA:  Monthly inbound traffic up, exports down at major USWC ports

Mark Edward Nero, September 18, 2017, American Shipper

The five major U.S. West Coast (USWC) container ports – Los Angeles, Long Beach, Oakland, Tacoma, and Seattle — collectively handled 99,376 more inbound TEUs in July 2017 than in the same month a year ago, for a year-over-year gain of 11.2 percent, according to data newly compiled from the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association (PMSA).

PMSA’s data shows that growth was held back by a gain of just 0.4 percent at Oakland, along with another off month at the Northwest Seaport Alliance ports of Seattle and Tacoma, which reported a 2.3 percent (2,557 TEUs) drop in incoming box volumes.

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Container volumes on the rise at NWSA ports

Mark Edward Nero, September 20, 2017, American Shipper

Total monthly volumes for the Seattle and Tacoma ports improved 6 percent last month over August 2016 numbers, while total year-to-date container volumes from January through August rose 5 percent, according to newly released statistics from the marine cargo operating partnership between the two ports.

Full imports for August 2017 reached their highest level since 2010, increasing 1 percent to 119,529 TEUs compared to last year, while full exports were down 8 percent to 76,614 TEUs, according to the Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA), which comprises Seattle and Tacoma.

The big gain last month was in empty exports, which, according to the NWSA, reached their highest volume since 2006 by growing 58 percent during what was a peak season month for the ports.

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Port of Woodland buys Austin Point land

Rick Bannan, September 19, 2017, The Reflector

The sale of more than 150 acres of land owned by the Washington state Department of Natural Resources will allow for future development for the Port of Woodland, though a port official says other projects come first on the port’s development plans.

A release from the Board of Natural Resources stated that during the board’s Sept. 5 meeting it approved the sale of land off of Kuhnis Road outside of Woodland city limits, northeast of the junction of the Lewis and Columbia rivers.

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Town honors NAS Whidbey SAR

September 21, 2017, San Juan Islander

Mayor Carrie Lacher of the Town of Friday Harbor presented a plaque thanking and honoring the air and ground crews of the Search and Rescue team from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island at the Friday Harbor Airport during an evening ceremony on Tuesday September 19, 2017. Over the last several years Whidbey SAR has flown many heroic missions to San Juan Island to aid those in life threatening condition and deliver them to hospitals on the mainland.

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Restored Woodland community orchard ripe for the picking

Marissa Luck, September 21, 2017, The Daily News

ll apples and crunchy walnuts await visitors at the newly refurbished Guild-Klady Centennial Farm. In partnership with the Port of Woodland, Boy Scout Troop 531 recently completed a seven-month project to restore the 140-year old orchard, which had been overgrown and decaying for years.

The port and Scouts will host a grand opening ceremony 6 p.m. Saturday at the orchard at 1620 Guild Road. Light refreshments and apple cider will be served, and the port will provide bags to participants who want to pick fruit from the trees.

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Deputies, protesters create friendly vibe at natural gas protest south of Chehalis

Graham Perednia, September 22, 2017, The Chronicle

On a dead end county road south of Chehalis, five protesters on Thursday marched a mile to hand-deliver a letter to the manager of the Jackson Prairie gas storage site owned by Puget Sound Energy.

The protesters were met by four deputies from the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office, but the mood remained friendly on both sides. Prior to the protesters arrival, 10 deputies were at the scene.

The goal of the protesters was to voice their concern over the proposed liquified natural gas facility in Tacoma, which would provide natural gas for customers in addition to maritime needs to fuel ships that run on gas instead of diesel fuel.

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Port recognizes Calhoun’s contributions

September 15, 2017, Forks Forum

West End resident John Calhoun was surprised at last Wednesday’s Chamber of Commerce meeting, with a letter of appreciation from the Port of Port Angeles commissioners. The letter was read and presented by commissioner Connie Beauvais seen here with Calhoun. The letter read as follows:

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Col. Clyde Owen honored by Moses Lake, Port of Moses Lake

Richard Byrd, September 19, 2017, Columbia Basin Herald

Moses Lake as we know it today might look a little bit different if Col. Clyde Owen had never come to the city. Owen, the last commander at Larson Air Force Base and first executive director at the Port of Moses Lake, was recently recognized by the city of Moses Lake and the port for his years of service to the community.

Owen, who recently celebrated his 99th birthday, started out in the Kansas National Guard in 1940 prior to joining the Air Force, where he would log 26 years of service. He flew 43 combat missions in the Air Force during World War II and was shot down over Germany in the B-26 he was flying during the war, according to a previous Columbia Basin report.

“Col. Owen’s final command was Larson Air Force Base in Moses Lake, Washington. He was instrumental in the transition from Larson Air Force Base to the infancy of the Port of Moses Lake in 1965,” Mayor Karen Liebrecht read from the city’s Lifetime Achievement Proclamation for Owen during a recent council meeting.

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Northwest Seaport Alliance CEO Wolfe receives 2017 Connie Award

Eric Haun, September 20, 2017, Maritime Logistics Professional

John Wolfe, CEO of The Northwest Seaport Alliance, received the 2017 Connie Award presented by the Containerization & Intermodal Institute in Long Beach, Calif., on Tuesday, September 19.

Since the formation of the NWSA in August 2015, Wolfe has led the marine cargo operating partnership of the ports of Seattle and Tacoma.

“This is an incredible honor for John and The Northwest Seaport Alliance,” said Tom Albro, Port of Seattle commission president and co-chair of The Northwest Seaport Alliance. “As the two ports took a bold step to collectively come together two years ago, we were confident in putting John to lead an organization that would accomplish great things.”

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Connie Awards spotlight US West Coast industry innovation

Bill Mongelluzzo, September 20, 2017,

John Wolfe, CEO of the Northwest Seaport Alliance of Seattle and Tacoma, and Amy Grat, CEO of International Trade Education Programs (ITEP), were co-recipients of the annual West Coast Connie Awards presented Tuesday by the Containerization and Intermodal Institute.

Wolfe was recognized for his career achievements in ocean shipping and intermodal transportation, and more recently for his success in leading two fierce competitors, the Puget Sound ports of Seattle and Tacoma, in their decision to combine their planning, marketing, and development efforts in 2015 to form the third-largest container gateway in the United States.

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House bill would create new freight infrastructure fund

September 18, 2017, Progressive Railroading

U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.) last week reintroduced legislation that would establish a competitive grant program designed to boost the efficiency and capacity of the U.S. freight network.

H.R. 3769 calls for the creation of a new freight fee — a 1 percent tax assessed on the cost of ground transportation in the United States — that would fund a National Freight Mobility Infrastructure Fund.

The Coalition for America’s Gateways & Trade Corridors (CAGTC) praised the bill, and noted that freight movement across all transportation modes is expected to grow nearly 42 percent by 2040.

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BNSF, WSDOT awarded W.W. Hay Award

Mischa Wanek-Libman, September 19, 2017, Railway Age Magazine

At Railway Interchange 2017, the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA) presented the 2017 Dr. William W. Hay Award for Excellence to BNSF and the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) for the Improvements for Passenger Rail Service and Reliability on BNSF Railway in Washington State project.

BNSF worked with WSDOT on the line between Blaine, Wash., near the U.S. Canadian border and Vancouver, Wash., to bring improvements focused on enhancing passenger rail service and ensuring a consistent level of freight operations through the region.

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