Will the state’s aerospace office survive budget cuts?

Roughly a year after its creation, the governor’s office of aerospace could be on the state budget chopping block.

The Senate’s proposed budget, which is being voted on this afternoon, would eliminate funding for the office.

Former Gov. Chris Gregoire named the first director, Alex Pietsch, of the aerospace office in March 2012. The office was part of Gregoire’s pitch to Boeing when the state was vying for 737 MAX work in late 2011.

A state competitiveness study, conducted for the 737 MAX competition, also deemed the position vital to keeping Washington focused on the aerospace industry.

Aerospace groups in the state sent out emails and tweets on Friday urging people to communicate with the Senate and restore funding, $245,000, to the 2013-2015 budget.

Bob Drewel, with Prosperity Partnership, called the elimination of funding for the aerospace office a “stunning set-back to our collective efforts to compete for jobs in aerospace.”

Washington Aerospace Partnership, which Drewel helped to create, partially funds the aerospace director position.

The idea of having a state aerospace director originated in 2003 when Washington was competing to win the original 787 final assembly line in Everett. The state was successful in that competition but didn’t create the position. In 2009, Boeing selected North Charleston, South Carolina as the site of a second 787 assembly line.

Gov. Jay Inslee has outlined workforce training and transportation as key issues to winning work on Boeing’s 777X, an updated version of the Everett-built 777 that the company is likely to launch this year.

More in Herald Business Journal

Health-care consumers need to take the lead, so get smart

David Russian, CEO of Western Washington Medical Group, writes our third essay about fixing health care.

Robots on Wall Street: Slow-footed regulators lose ground

Watchdogs have to figure out how to check computers running lightening-fast algorithms.

More business, more competition for Everett kidney dialysis center

Nonprofit Puget Sound Kidney Centers sees large for-profit competitors enter state market.

Molina Medical holds fall carnival for families in Everett

Molina Medical is hosting a free event for families in the Everett… Continue reading

Leadership Snohomish County celebrates 20 years of service

Leadership Snohomish County is celebrating its 20th anniversary. The organization was launched… Continue reading

Snohomish, Monroe manufacturers honored for innovation, excellence

Two Snohomish County companies have been honored with Manufacturing Excellence awards at… Continue reading

Remodeled home tours planned this weekend

This weekend, Edmonds-based Chermak Construction will participate in the 2017 Remodeled Homes… Continue reading

Barron Heating to celebrate anniversary at Marysville showroom

Barron Heating and Air Conditioning is celebrating its 45th anniversary from 10… Continue reading

US budget deficit hits $666B, an $80B spike for the year

The deficit issue has largely fallen in prominence in Washington in recent years.

Most Read