Jerry Cornfield, political reporter for the Everett Daily Herald, reports that Boeing wants the legislature to
invest in training workers and educating greater numbers of engineers; improve the state’s transportation network including in and around its Everett factory; continue reforming [i.e., weakening] workers’ compensation; and don’t change a state standard on fish consumption in a way that forces them to spend major bucks on improvements at its facilities.
House Democrats and Inslee insist they’ve been told Boeing’s chief concerns are higher education and transportation. Members of the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus say Boeing told them its priorities are workers’ compensation and fish consumption.
The first two requests call for more government spending (on education and transportation). The second two requests call for deregulation and lower costs for Boeing.
Of course, Boeing negotiated with the legislature a sweetheart deal to make it exempt from many taxes. Cornfield points out: “It’s been nothing like 2003 when Washington offered up a humongous tax break and huge reforms in workers’ compensation to win the Dreamliner. … There’s no question Boeing is still reaping rewards from that huge handout.”
A few weeks ago, State Sen. Mike Hewitt, R-Walla Walla, wrote an opinion piece for the Seattle Times calling on the legislature to deliver more giveaways to Boeing to keep it from moving its operations to South Carolina. But, Huge tax breaks for aerospace didn’t deliver many new jobs.