Wednesday, August 29, 2012

What is the Port of Seattle thinking? | Sound Economy with Jon Talton | The Seattle Times

The Port has decided that the Port CEO has complied with the Port ethics rules, so says the Port.

Insular in just this case, or is this the nature of the Port overall?
I think that independant observation of this particular instance should have been use, and possibly the entire Port.

If so much depends on the Port and they do not appear to be building their business case for the future on facts, and their internal decisions are judged by their being a law, or not, then maybe it's time the public had an independant advocate evaluate the Port.

What are the port leaders, and specifically Yoshitani, a smart and capable man, thinking? The seaport has just suffered the loss of a major portion of its container business, with the move of the Grand Alliance to Tacoma. In the dispute over the horrid conditions facing drayage truck drivers, a shameful example of the exploitation of "independent contractors," the port came off as insensitive and out of touch. Meanwhile, the Century Agenda, while a fine aspirational document, still lacks specifics about how the seaport will face growing competitive threats. Among them: the wider Panama Canal, Prince Rupert and Tacoma. Amid all this, the port chose a very public battle against the proposed Sonics arena, as if it's an "either/or" choice, rather than working constructively behind the scenes to ensure improved infrastructure and protection of industrial zoning. These challenges wouldn't seem to leave much "on his own time" time for Yoshitani to be moonlighting.

It would be harsh to wonder if Yoshitani sees disarray and dysfunction at his employer and has decided to cash in while he can. But people are wondering just that. It's time for the port to remember, as it parses "conflicts of interest," that it serves the public interest.

Have a great day,
Mike Baker

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Friday, August 24, 2012

Port CEO's external job in question, "We are concerned about the precedent this sets..."

Turns out, the extra job taken by Port of Seattle CEO Tay Yoshitani as a Board Member of Expediters International is in question.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Port of Seattle Email Calls Port's Job Creation Numbers "Pie in the Sky" | Slog
Date: Thu, 24 May 2012 10:06:00 -0700
Subject: Proposed SODO Arena


POS, I feel, is really starting to have a major PR problem with the proposed arena.
The numbers being thrown around regarding job creation just don't have any substance and are being viewed as "pie in the sky".
You've had freight mobility issues for years because of a constrained layout.
Losing a couple of major carriers hasn't added any weight to the job creation argument.
I feel that this is a ripe opportunity for the Port to gain substantial concessions from both the City and the County regarding dedicated transportation infrastructure.
Please see if you can get a better spin on what looks like a done deal.

Regards, MB.

Yes, just put a better "spin" on those "pie in the sky" numbers and everything will be ok.

Attention Larry Phillips, you are being played for a stooge, or not (and that's worse).

Attention Richard Conlin, you are being played for a stooge, or not (and that's worse).

Both of you should recognize that more will come out because people still haven't learned that a Public entity's emails belong to the public.
You are on the wrong side of honesty, and you can't stay there for too long before somebody comes along to return the public office to the correct side of honesty.

Free advice, admit that you took an early position based on the best information you had at the time. Although the arguments were convincing, it now appears that the basis for those arguments were based on "pie in the sky" numbers.

This really is the only phase that you can save face, to any degree. Championing "pie in the sky" numbers never gets better with age, never.

Now for the unfriendly advice, your email belongs to the public too.

And note: I did not offer advice to Pete von Reichbauer, there is no good in that one.

Have a great day,
Mike Baker

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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Port Century plan still aspirational

Fearmongering fails to hide the fact that the Port Century plan still aspirational.

Tim Ceis, Sodo-area consultant for the Seattle Department of Transportation, said the report doesn't show how the Port might meet those cargo goals.
"There's no data or analytics behind it to suggest whether it's achievable," he said Tuesday.

Port report warns of more traffic problems with proposed Sodo arena | Local News | The Seattle Times

Build the arena.

Have a great day,
Mike Baker

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Friday, August 3, 2012

Send an Email - tell elected officials you support Sonics Arena

The King County Council has voted to move forward with Sonics Arena.

Now it's time to urge the Seattle City Council to do the same.

Tell the Seattle City Council you support bringing the Sonics and NHL to Seattle!



Clearly state your support
Tell your elected officials why you support a new Sonics Arena and how excited you are for the return of the Sonics/arrival of the NHL.

Be polite
Let your passion be heard, but keep it clean.

Include Your Street Address
That way elected officials will know you live in the area, and County Council members will know you're in their district.


1. Building the Arena will require no new taxes.

2. Local business and community leaders have endorsed the Arena.

3. One of the largest private investments for any Arena in North America — public contribution to the Arena will be fully repaid by Arena generated revenues — unprecedented taxpayer protections in place.

4. Studies show there will be a minimal effect on traffic in the area.

5. The Arena will boost the local economy.

6. The NBA will return to Seattle — and this time it will stay.