John Horgan: Strengthening the relationship between B.C. and Washington state

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Over the past year and half, I’ve been working collaboratively with Washington state Governor Jay Inslee to strengthen the relationship between Washington state and B.C. and seize opportunities in the Pacific Northwest.

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On Thursday in Seattle, I announced that B.C. is backing the next phase of a potential ultra-high-speed corridor service, linking British Columbia, Washington state and Oregon.

There is enormous untapped potential for growth in our region. We’re working together to deepen ties, deliver strong, sustainable economic development, and create good jobs for people on both sides of the border.

Improving transportation connectivity is a critically important part of the path forward.  In March 2018, B.C. contributed $300,000 for a business case analysis for a new ultra high-speed corridor.

On December 10, 2018, Governor Inslee announced that he is including USD $3.25 million in his budget for the development of a new ultra high-speed corridor authority for Washington, British Columbia and Oregon as part of his broader clean energy strategy.

B.C. has now committed to contributing an additional $300,000 for the proposed next phase of the project that will explore models for a multi-jurisdictional authority to lead a community engagement process and preliminary environmental review.

Our governments have been working jointly to grow the innovation and tech economy, tackle climate change, protect the environment, and promote mutually beneficial trade and improve transportation connectivity. Collaboration on the corridor study is another step towards realizing these shared goals.

Both of our governments also introduced innovative climate action plans in December of 2018.

We share the common goal of rising to the challenge of climate change, while investing in a sustainable, low-carbon economies that are ready for the future.

The CleanBC climate action plan is designed to help B.C. reduce climate pollution while creating more jobs and economic opportunities for people, businesses, and communities.

B.C. and Washington State have a lot in common, and we know we are stronger when we work together.

We’re going to keep working collaboratively to seize opportunities and build a bright future.

I’m excited about we can accomplish to make life better for people in our region.

John Horgan is the Premier of British Columbia.

[Note to readers: The province has started to send out weekly op-eds from Premier John Horgan. In keeping with past AHN tradition in sharing articles from B.C.'s political representatives and our local leaders, and in response to reader feedback, we are adding them to our editorial package.] 

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