Spokane Valley City Councilman Ben Wick was appointed by Gov. Jay Inslee to the Washington State Freight Mobility Strategic Investment Board on Oct. 22.
The board oversees freight movement in local, national and international markets and is charged with finding solutions to lessen the impact of freight movement on local communities.
The board also proposes projects and funding to the state Legislature that promote investments in freight transportation.
Wick will serve a four-year term on the board as one of two representatives of cities for freight mobility across the state.
“Councilmember Wick is highly capable and interested in serving the FMSIB in its mission to help move sound freight corridor policies, projects and funding recommendations forward while being sensitive to the impacts on cities,” said Peter King, CEO of the Association of Washington Cities, in a statement. “He is a strong representative of cities in our state.”
The board is comprised of two representatives each from port districts, city and county governments, and one representative each from the railroad, trucking and marine industries as well as from the Washington Office of Financial Management and the Washington Secretary of the Department of Transportation.
As rail and road traffic increases and trains get longer, at-grade rail crossings create travel delays and pose a safety hazard.
Wick, who previously served as vice chair of the Spokane Regional Transportation Council, plans to work on prioritizing rail crossings to improve safety in the state.
“I’m looking forward to being a member representing the community on our side of the state and the rest of the cities, and getting back to transportation again,” Wick said. “I really look forward to talking about freight and making sure to improve our road network and minimize impact of freight movement on cities.”
The board’s next meeting is Nov. 16 at the CenterPlace Regional Event Center in Spokane Valley.
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