Press Releases

Congressman Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) announced today that the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) has approved the Central Puget Sound Economic Development District’s applications for their economic development planning program and for an EDA direct investment. CEDC will receive $100,000 for program implementation and $96,000 to develop an economic cluster development plan for vacant areas adjacent to Sea-Tac Airport.

“The approval of these funds is great news for the Central Puget Sound area,” Smith said.  “The funding will allow the region to maintain its eligibility for EDA public works grants and other kinds of assistance.  Local communities can receive funding to strengthen their physical infrastructure, and create family-wage jobs for members of their community.  I expect to work closely with the Economic Development District on projects, like the Lakewood sewer, that are critical to our region.”

The EDA planning grant award will help the Economic Development District work with local governments and other economic development organizations to create family-wage jobs in the central Puget Sound region.  The Economic Development District will use the funds to help coordinate economic development in the region, provide technical assistance and prioritize public works projects within the region for EDA funding.  The grant award is especially critical now, when Washington state has one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation. 

The New Economic Strategy Triangle (NEST) initiative is a partnership between the cities of Des Moines, SeaTac and Burien, the Economic Development District and the Port of Seattle.  NEST will examine how to best use industrial and commercial properties near Sea-Tac International Airport and maximize their economic potential.

 

Ninth District Congressman Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) announced today that he is co-sponsoring legislation to both bring the United States into compliance with World Trade Organization rulings and promote jobs in the United States.

H.R. 1769, The Job Protection Act of 2003, is a bipartisan bill led by Congressmen Phil Crane (R-Ill.) and Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.).  It would repeal the FSC/ETI (Foreign Services Corporation/Extraterritorial Income) and replace it with a domestic manufacturing and production income exclusion.

“Companies receiving tax benefits should be providing jobs to Americans,” Smith said.  “This bill addresses the FSC/ETI issue in a way that is fair and promotes job growth here in America.”

The World Trade Organization recently ruled that the U.S. FSC/ETI tax deduction was not in compliance because it unfairly promoted exports.  As of May 7, the European Union (EU) will be formally authorized to impose $4 billion in trade sanctions against the United States at any time.  Since the Bush Administration’s United States Trade Representative Robert Zoellick has repeatedly said the issue could not be settled through negotiation, legislation repealing the FSC/ETI is necessary to prevent the EU’s trade sanctions.

House Ways and Means Chairman Bill Thomas (R-Calif.) has promoted legislation that would repeal FSC/ETI and provide a new tax benefit primarily to multinational corporations.  Smith argues that approach rewards companies with large operations overseas and does nothing to help those companies that employ many Americans here at home and export their goods and services.

“This is a critically important issue, and the actions of Congress will have serious consequences,” said Smith.  “We must act to avoid trade sanctions which will hurt our already-fragile economy, businesses and workers; however, we must act wisely so that we don’t encourage businesses to move more operations overseas because of the way the tax code is structured.  This approach will allow us to avoid trade sanctions and will promote jobs here in the United States.  It’s a win-win for America.”

The Crane-Rangel bill is bipartisan and has the support of the majority of the Washington state delegation.  It is also supported by Boeing, Microsoft, and the AFL-CIO.

 

Congressman Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) announced this week that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) office of Community Planning and Development has awarded the city of Auburn a grant for $478,000 to support their community development consolidated plan.

“This grant is very exciting for the city of Auburn and its citizens,” Smith said.  “The funding allows the city to solicit proposals from public and private non-profit agencies for construction or rehabilitation projects or social service programs that benefit low and very low income persons in Auburn. This is a tremendously needed boost for Auburn.”

The grant was awarded in support of Auburn’s community development Consolidated Plan which describes the city’s strategy to implement programs and activities which provide emergency shelters and transitional housing for the homeless; childcare; health care services; neighborhood revitalization; counseling for AIDS victims; removal of architectural barriers; and facility improvements.  At the same time, HUD released $32 million in funds for eligible program activities including transitional and permanent housing for the homeless and persons who area HIV positive, affordable housing, public services, and capital projects to support low and moderate income persons.

 

Congressman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) today announced that the Seattle Police Department has been awarded $450,000 for their Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force by the U.S. Department of Justice office of Justice Programs. 

“As policymakers and parents, we’re all concerned for the safety of children as they use the Internet and enjoy the benefits it has to offer,” said Smith.  “Currently 73 percent of American teens actively use the Internet.  By 2002, there will be an estimated 45 million children online. It’s absolutely shocking, but 20 percent of all children regularly online have had requests to engage in sexual activity in the last year alone. The Seattle Police Department has done an amazing job focusing on this critical area and today’s announcement will enable them to expand their efforts.”

In 2000 the Seattle Police Department received an 18 month, $300,000 grant from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention for the funding to enhance, develop, and coordinate improved investigation and response to Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC).  This taskforce is one of 29 that have been developed nationwide.

The Special Investigations Unit of the Seattle Police Vice Section is the ICAC Task force for Washington State. The ICAC Task Force investigates any computer crime involving children anywhere in the state. These crimes can include: sexual exploitation of children, child pornography, child cyber-stalking, communication with a minor, and sexual assault of children.

Currently the Seattle Police Vice – Special Investigations Unit/ICAC Task Force works together with Federal, State and Local jurisdictions on ICAC cases. This multi-jurisdictional approach to law enforcement via the Internet has been quite successful. In 2000 ICAC Detectives opened 144 cases. This is an estimated increase in ICAC cases since 1999. This has also caused a significant increase in ICAC cases being prosecuted.

At a reception for the top 20 student submissions, Congressman Adam Smith (D-Tacoma) announced the winners of the Congressional Art Contest from the Ninth District.  Cedric McArthur of Tacoma School of the Arts was awarded first place for his untitled chalk pastel on paper, second place went to Laura Adams also of Tacoma School of the Arts for her untitled photo, and Bethel High School’s Ryan Davidson received third place for his “Just Another Day in Cloudy Paradise” tempera and pastel.

“It is always wonderful to see the art and creativity of the students of the Ninth District.  The Congressional Art Contest allows us to show off their talents to the rest of the county and to encourage them to strive for even greater heights with their art,” Congressman Adam Smith said.

Every year for the last 21 years, Members of the U.S. House of Representatives have held art competitions in their Congressional districts.  Members bring the winning piece from their district back to Washington, D.C. to be displayed in a corridor of the U.S. Capitol. 

This year, Congressman Smith convened a judging panel consisting of Bonnie Gallagher, President of the Hilltop Artist Association, Mayumi Tsutakawa, Wallace Arts Initiative Manager for the Washington State Arts Commission and Ann Darling, Community Arts Activist. 

In addition to having his submission displayed at the U.S. Capitol, first place winner Cedric McArthur will be flown to Washington, D.C. compliments of Southwest Airlines to participate in the opening of the 2003 Congressional exhibition.  In the past, representatives of the arts community participating in the opening celebration have included Tom Cruise, Dean Cain, Billy Baldwin and Sarah Jessica Parker.  Cedric will also receive a scholarship to the Savannah College of Art and Design, as well as a year’s membership to both the Seattle and Tacoma Art Museums.  His art teacher at the Tacoma School of the Arts will receive free admission to the Tacoma Art Museum. 

Second place winner Laura Adams and third place winner Ryan Davidson will have their pieces exhibited in Congressman Smith’s district office for one year after the event, where visitors from throughout the Ninth District will be able to view the art.  Both artists will also receive a year’s membership to the Seattle Art Museum.