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Former VP Joe Biden picks Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate; some schools have science-based metrics for open classroom instruction.


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California Sen. Kamala Harris will be on the ticket with Joe Biden in November. Four states had primaries yesterday, and two had runoffs. Georgia and Wisconsin appear to have improved since last time.

Vancouver Businesses Cite "Oil Train Economics" for Opposing Terminal

A small-business coalition says building a large oil-by-rail terminal at the Port of Vancouver would change the city's character and culture, and end up costing more jobs than it creates. Credit: Washington Department of Transportation.
A small-business coalition says building a large oil-by-rail terminal at the Port of Vancouver would change the city's character and culture, and end up costing more jobs than it creates. Credit: Washington Department of Transportation.
August 19, 2015

VANCOUVER, Wash. - Small businesses in Vancouver say the city is becoming its own economic powerhouse and doesn't need an oil-shipping terminal to create jobs.

Members of the group "Vancouver 101" estimate that if only one in 30 businesses now in the area moves or closes because of a proposed Tesoro-Savage oil terminal being built, and others decide not to locate in Vancouver, job loss soon would outweigh oil-terminal jobs by 16 to one.

Auto-shop owner Don George said it isn't as much an official survey as a common-sense prediction.

"If we lose a few of those businesses each year," he said, "this is projected on no spills. This is projected on no accidents. This is projected on people deciding that being next to the biggest oil terminal in North America is not an attractive proposition."

According to the Port of Vancouver, its responsibility is to produce tax revenue and jobs on the property in marine and industrial development, and the state's Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council has dragged its feet in the review process. The draft Environmental Impact Statement for the oil terminal is expected in November.

The delays have given local business owners time to organize and share their concerns about oil-by-rail safety, the environment and property values. But Hector Hinojosa, a restaurateur and caterer, said that for most, it's a matter of supporting what will bring in the most customers and add to the downtown culture and character rather than changing it.

"It's better for us to have a waterfront project that is attractive, so the oil terminal doesn't make any kind of economic sense for us," he said. "So, just strictly a financial aspect for me, oil terminal doesn't do anything for my business."

Vancouver 101 pointed to waterfront development plans geared for customers rather than oil tankers as its preferred alternative. The cities of Vancouver and Washougal also are on record as opposing the oil-terminal plans.

Chris Thomas, Public News Service - WA