Governor Gary Locke’s Remarks
Target Lacey Import Warehouse Grand Opening
April 25, 2003

Good morning. It’s great to be here for this grand opening.

I’d like to thank and congratulate Target for choosing Lacey as the site of this new national Import Warehouse. This will be an internal distribution center for imported goods sold at Target Stores nationwide. We welcome this part of your operation to our state.

Of course, we’ve known your company and your stores for years. When I told my kids, Emily and Dylan, that I would be going to Target this morning, they thought I meant the store and wanted to come with me!

We are very proud that you chose Washington for this facility. Target is truly a world-class company. Target Corporation employees more than 280,000 people, operates nearly 1500 stores, and can be found in 47 states. Forbes magazine ranked Target among the top 50 in its 2003 Super 500s list. Target was also ranked in the top 50 of the Fortune 500. And the National Association for Female Executives ranks Target Corporation among the “Top 30 Companies for Executive Women.”

Best of all, Target is a great corporate citizen that shares our commitment to communities. This company gives back more than $2 million every week to the communities in which it does business. Last year, more than 75,000 Target Corporation team members invested in their communities by giving more than 320,000 volunteer hours to local nonprofit organizations. Target is a responsible, caring company. One we are very proud to have doing business here.

For our state, today is a big day. Jobs are a top priority in these tough economic times. This key facility will provide more family-wage jobs for our citizens.

Seven national chains, including Target, have located regional distribution centers in Washington state since January of 2002, generating approximately 1900 jobs in our state. That’s 1900 meaningful opportunities with good companies. 1900 families in our state for whom the past 15 months have brought new, promising beginnings.

We’re on the right track. These companies chose Washington for many reasons. Washington has always been a great place to do business. And we’ve been working very hard the past few years to make our state even more competitive. We’ve cut red tape, and streamlined regulatory processes. We’ve created new economic development tools to help local governments and rural areas in our state attract new business.

And we’re going to help both businesses and our citizens by passing a transportation improvement package before this session is finished!

Today we see again that our efforts are paying off—paying off in more family-wage jobs for our state. My administration will keep doing our best to improve our state’s competitiveness. We will continue to focus on jobs.

We will keep welcoming companies like Target—the world’s best companies—to this state, whether it’s to locate or expand. Because we want and appreciate the good jobs that come with these companies. Because we value good corporate citizens like Target. And because we know that Washington is a great place to live, work, raise a family—and to do business.

Thank you.

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