The Port of Chehalis has received $3.14 million from the Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) to build a new grain storage and loading facility.
Sens. Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray announced the funding in a Wednesday news release. The project will also receive $1.8 million in state and local funds.
When completed, the project is expected to generate around $3 million in annual economic activity and up to $3.4 million in private investments.
“These federal resources are an investment and vote of confidence in the future of Lewis County,” Cantwell said in a statement. “The new grain storage and loading facility at the Port of Chehalis will support 50 local jobs, develop Southwest Washington’s grain industry, and help more farmers grow barley by increasing access to new and existing markets around the country and the world.”
Murray said the grant funding is a “big deal for the Port of Chehalis and Lewis County.”
“Not only is it going to support our agriculture industry and local businesses, but it will also help create dozens of good-paying jobs in the area,” Murray said. “Congressional Democrats are working hand-in-hand with President Biden to build an economy that works for the middle-class and make sure communities like Chehalis have the resources they need to succeed.”
In a statement, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez said the funding is an “important step” to building a responsive federal government. In May, Gluesenkamp Perez announced she was seeking $4.5 million for the project, part of $44 million in funding she asked for 3rd District projects.
“In a time where we are importing almost 40% of our fresh fruit and vegetables, it is crucial that we are investing in infrastructure to support local farmers and producers,” said Congresswoman Gluesenkamp Perez. “I am grateful to the community leaders who alerted our office to this project and am glad to play a small part in bringing this investment to Chehalis.”
The facility is expected to create or retain more than 50 jobs, according to the Department of Commerce.
“President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is providing communities like Lewis County with the resources they need to grow local businesses and create new jobs,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said in a statement. “This EDA investment will provide new infrastructure to support specialty grain growers moving their products to national and global markets — helping boost economic growth throughout the region.”