Port of Grays Harbor

Economic impact of the Port of Grays Harbor analyzed: Over 5,700 jobs and $564 million in business revenue generated

October 2014 - Activities of the Port of Grays Harbor’s marine terminals, marina, airport and industrial properties generated over 5,700 jobs and $564 million in business revenues according to a study conducted by Martin Associates based on 2013 data. Over $32.1 million in state and local taxes resulted from these activities in 2013.

The study analyzed the Port’s four operating areas – marine terminal cargo activity, commercial fishing/processing, recreational fishing and non-maritime real estate tenants. Economists surveyed firms that provide services or use the Port’s facilities to accumulate employment, purchasing and tax impact data.

The employment impact consists of four levels of job impacts:
• Direct job impacts total 2,727: jobs directly generated by marine cargo, marina operations, commercial fishing activity and real estate tenants. Examples are longshoremen, rail workers, fishermen, seafood processors, suppliers, employees of port tenants, etc. The study found that over 85% of the direct jobs are held by people who reside in Grays Harbor County.
• Induced job impacts total 1,608: induced jobs are created throughout the local economy because individuals employed due to port activities spend their wages. Examples are food servers, retail sales, home improvement contractors, etc.
• Indirect job impacts total 1,368: indirect jobs result from the business activities of the firms purchasing goods and services in the region. Examples are electricians, office supply companies, maintenance and repair, and equipment suppliers.
• Related jobs total 36,909 in the US: In addition to the direct, induced and indirect jobs generated at the Port, the study quantified the related user employment impact of firms that use the cargo facilities of the Port of Grays Harbor. These jobs are not directly dependent upon the Port but they rely upon Port facilities for their operations. Examples of related jobs are farmers in the Midwest that ship their product through Grays Harbor.

One of the fastest growing export ports on the West Coast, Grays Harbor has experienced a surge in cargo volumes at their four deep-water marine terminals while at the same time commercial and recreational fishing at the port-owned Westport Marina have also been growing. Non-marine tenants of Port’s industrial properties round out the employment and business impacts of the study.

“The results are exciting,” expressed Commission President Stan Pinnick. “Our strategy to encourage private investment and business activity is paying off in jobs, economic activity and an expanded tax base for our County. With 2014 cargo volumes and activity on the rise over 2013, it is safe to set these numbers as our benchmark to grow from.”

The study found that $564 million in business revenues are generated by firms using and providing services at Port facilities, which does not include the value of cargo shipped or the value of seafood landed. Local purchases totaled more than $136 million.

“The results of the study confirm the Port is carrying out its mission to facilitate, enhance and stimulate international trade, economic development and tourism for the region,” stated Port Executive Director Gary Nelson. “It is nice to see the diversity of the jobs created by the Port’s activities and to see local businesses flourishing as a result of the growth at the Port and its facilities. Through diversification we can create a stronger Grays Harbor economy.”

Download the full study here.

In 2013, the Port of Grays Harbor’s activities generated a total of 5,704 jobs throughout the region while generating $341 million in personal income and local consumption. Local and regional purchases made by those 2,727 individuals directly employed contributed an additional 1,608 induced jobs for the region.