Lawmakers Pass Aerospace Bill to Extend Tax Breaks to Boeing
This morning, Governor Jay Inslee signed the aerospace legislation bill passed by lawmakers this past weekend to extend $9 Billion dollars of tax breaks to Boeing Company.
Lawmakers were called to a special session this past weekend where they approved an incentive package to lure Boeing to build its new commercial jet here in Washington which would be the largest aerospace expansion in the entire country.
Governor Jay Inslee said Boeing will select the state to assemble the new 777X and build it's composite wings through 2040.
However, the deal isn't quite there yet, the fate of the program is now in the hands of the Boeing Machinist's union.
Many union members said Boeing's extension is loaded with too many takeaways, including less health coverage, less wage increases and replacing Boeing's pension plan with a 401K.
However, Sen. Sharon Brown said it's a move that would bring more than 50,000 jobs and billions of dollars of tax revenue to Washington state.
Brown said it will also save more than 1,000 jobs and carry a fiscal impact of more than $50 Million both here in the Tri-Cities and Yakima.
Brown said passing this bill opens up the idea of creating these tax breaks for other companies.
"What are we going to do to help not just the aerospace industry in this state, but what are we going to do to help all the businesses in this state?" said Brown. "Clearly there's an issue. This is not a business friendly state and we need to do whatever we can as legislators to help businesses, they are the backbone of this state."
Along with extending tax breaks to 2040, lawmakers this past weekend also approved millions of dollars for training programs for aerospace workers.
Members of the Machinist Union are expected to vote on a contract Wednesday and with approval, construction of Boeing's new large plane will begin in the Puget Sound Region.