B.C. Premier John Horgan and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee meet in Vancouver, March 16, 2018. (Black Press files)

B.C. Premier John Horgan renews ties with Washington Gov. Jay Inslee

West Coast bromance includes speech to state legislature in Olympia

B.C. Premier John Horgan is spending Thursday and Friday in Washington state, carrying on a close relationship with Gov. Jay Inslee that includes a speech to the state legislature.

Horgan is also expected to meet with executives from Microsoft and the Seattle Chamber of Commerce on the two-day visit, as well as his speech in Olympia, the state capital.

Inslee spoke to the B.C. legislature in November, 2017, using the occasion to blast U.S. President Donald Trump for his hard line on immigration and refugees. That was the first of four meetings between the two in the 18 months Horgan has been premier.

RELATED: Inslee tells B.C. legislature, don’t worry about Trump

RELATED: Inslee lowers pressure on Trans Mountain opposition

An advisory from the premier’s office says Horgan will stick to the themes that have emerged from his bromance with Inslee, focused on environmental issues and technology.

“The two leaders have committed to act jointly to fight climate change, increase connectivity and transportation links, grow the innovation economy and the tech sector, grow mutually beneficial trade and create good jobs for people on both sides of the border,” the advisory said.

Inslee, who has shown ambitions to run for the Democratic nomination for the next presidential election, was outspoken in his opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. But after taking questions about his state’s dependence on Trans Mountain, the only pipeline delivering oil, and the increase in rail and tanker deliveries to refinery complexes at March Point, Cherry Point and Ferndale, WA, he cooled his rhetoric.

Shell’s March Point refinery near Anacortes began operation in 1958 with only Alberta crude from Trans Mountain, completed in 1954. It has tripled its capacity during its lifetime, with frequent tanker shipments from Valdez, Alaska.


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tfletcher@blackpress.ca

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