Convention Resolution

Resolution 33: Gateway Pacific Terminal

Submitted by the Washington State Labor Council, the Northwest Washington Central Labor Council, the Maritime Trades Department, the Laborers’ International Union of North America and the International Union of Operating Engineers

Referred to the Resolutions Committee


WHEREAS, the Gateway Pacific Terminal will be built and operated by union labor in one of the most financially challenged counties in the State of Washington regrettably marred by high levels of unemployment; and

WHEREAS, the construction and successful operation of the Gateway Pacific Terminal will provide meaningful long term employment for the labor movement that will support family wages, high benefit jobs; and

WHEREAS, the Gateway Pacific Terminal will include and utilize the most advanced environmental technology available that will set a standard for terminals throughout the world and will demonstrate that family-wage job generation and protection of the environment are indeed compatible; and

WHEREAS, the United States Army Corps of Engineers has publically clarified the position of the federal government that the Gateway Pacific Terminal and other similar projects  are independent of each other and that their environmental impacts are not related but will be subject to a rigorous review; and

WHEREAS, the Northwest Washington Central Labor Council has unanimously adopted a resolution  and recognized that the construction of the Gateway Pacific Terminal is consistent with land use and shoreline policies for the area; and

WHEREAS, the Northwest Washington Building and Construction Trades Council has conveyed its views to the Governor of Washington and urged that responsible agencies perform a timely, rigorous, fair, and objective review of the Gateway Pacific Terminal application; and

WHEREAS, the Seattle/King County  Building and Construction Trades Council has made its views known to the Governor of Washington that the Gateway Pacific Terminal will provide opportunities to bring back industrial and manufacturing jobs to Washington State and that it cannot be overlooked that millions of new tax dollars that will annually follow into public schools and social programs; and

WHEREAS, the Washington State Building & Construction Trades Council and its brothers and sisters have demonstrated the knowledge and skills necessary to build the most complex of projects and fully supports family wage jobs generated by this project that will improve  communities and contribute to the vitality of our nation’s economy; and

WHEREAS, the Washington State Labor Council has enacted a resolution  calling on the Local and National AFL-CIO Building and Construction Trades Departments, and the AFL-CIO Executive Committee to support the Gateway Pacific Terminal project in every way they can, and

WHEREAS, the Transportation division of SMART, on behalf of the men and women working in the rail industry, unequivocally support this investment in infrastructure that would generate long term employment opportunities and facilitate the rail movement of commodities through the Gateway Pacific Terminal; and

WHEREAS, the Maritime Trades Department, AFL-CIO, composed  of twenty-one unions representing nearly five million members, as well as the Puget Sound Ports Council, strongly supports the Gateway Pacific Terminal and the contribution it will make to expand port infrastructure; and

WHEREAS, the President of the AFL-CIO has written the Governor of Washington and stands in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in the labor movement and has noted that privately financed projects like the Gateway Pacific Terminal provide a tremendous opportunity to increase the nation’s port infrastructure with minimal environmental impacts, and it creates hundreds-upon-hundreds of new good paying jobs; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, that the AFL-CIO publicly support the Gateway Pacific Terminal; and furthermore

RESOLVED,  that the AFL-CIO calls on all coal companies that will ship coal from the Gateway Pacific Terminal, such as Peabody Energy, Arch Coal and others, to fulfill their moral obligation to their retired workers by keeping the promise of providing health care these companies made to their workers for decades; and be it finally

RESOLVED, that the President of the AFL-CIO communicate this support to the Governor, the Washington State congressional delegation, and relevant federal government agencies.