Railex ships a
million bottles of
wine...and lots of
Talk to Railex officials about surprises and
they’ll want to tell you about wine – like lots of
other Walla Walla Valley residents.
The transcontinental shipping system, with
its Northwest terminal near Wallula, has moved
more than a million bottles of wine since it
began handling the precious cargo some two
Railex Washington Manager Jim Kleist says
the milestone – the one millionth bottle – was
actually reached in June, 2008. Since then, the
number has continued to climb.
Kleist said that wine shipments, along with
other commodities including thousands of
pounds of potatoes, onions and apples, have
continued to contribute to “strong, solid
growth” for the train.
Excitement over Railex’s non-stop Wallula to
Rotterdam, N.Y., continues Kleist says. “We’re
meeting and surpassing our commitment to
fill a 55-car train each week and everything is
running smoothly,” he added.
“The wine shipments fi t well with the Railex
model,” Kleist continued. “Handling the
product has been everything we’ve hoped
for...from Northwest wineries to East Coast
Railex successes led the company to build a
new shipping terminal similar to Walla Walla
County in Delano, California. First produce
shipments from there to New York began in
Kleist says as many as 80 people are
employed in full-time and part-time positions
at the Wallula terminal.
PHOTO: Railex Warehouse Manager Tory
Brown with wine in the Wallula terminal’s
temperature controlled holding area.
Photo by Donna Lasater
park & schools
|| The Port of Walla Walla’s new $3.6 million
Burbank water system is completed and on-line,
serving the Port’s Burbank Business Park tenants
and Columbia School District elementary, middle
and high schools.
The budget included a $1.6 million appropriation
from Washington State and a $721,000 grant from
the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The
balance was provided by the Port of Walla Walla.
Washington State legislators - Senator Mike
Hewitt and Representatives Maureen Walsh and Bill
Grant – and U.S. Senator Patty Murray were key in
getting state and federal funding.
long-time Port auditor/
Port of Walla Walla Commissioners and staff
in August, 2008 congratulated Jackie Hardesty
on her retirement.
Hardesty had been the Port’s auditor/treasurer for 20 years.
During that period, the Port and Airport
enjoyed signifi cant growth and required
increasingly complex accounting systems.
“Thanks to Jackie’s hard work, the Port
successfully passed its state audit each year,”
emphasized Jim Kuntz, Port executive director.
Kuntz also welcomed Anna Christen as the
Port’s new auditor/treasurer. Christen was an
accounting specialist handling fixed assets for
Banner Bank prior to joining the Port.
|Port helps BMAC
Food Bank with
Proctor & Gamble gift
Port of WW Commission President Dr. Fred
Bennett recently announced a $5,000 grant by
Proctor & Gamble Company to Walla Walla’s
Blue Mountain Action Council Food Bank.
Bennett explained that P & G made the
donation on behalf of the Port because
of its “professionalism and commitment
in responding to dozens of information
requests” during a time when the company was
considering Walla Walla County as the site for
a new manufacturing plant, which later was
located in Utah.
In announcing the grant, P & G officials
praised the Port of Walla Walla as “an effective
economic development organization.”
|Web camera installed at
WW Regional Airport
Keeping an eye on what its like at the Walla
Walla Regional Airport is an easier task thanks
to a recently installed Web camera on the roof
of the airport terminal building.
Always in operation, the camera provides
a real-time snapshot of four viewpoints with
pictures that are updated every 15 minutes.
The installation was funded with a $5,000
grant from the Washington State Department
of Transportation Aviation Division, with a
$250 contribution from the WW Airport.
To access the Web camera visit
www.wallawallaairport.com and www.wsdot.wa.gov/aviation.
|Recycle station now a
feature at WW Airport
recycling bins are now in
place in the Airport
With some 60,000
through the airport
terminal each year, Port
officials say there’s a great
opportunity to recycle
cans, paper and plastic.
Horizon Air will also
use the bins for recyclable
materials from Walla Walla flights.