More big news on the jobs front with this week’s announcement that Niagara Bottling LLC will open a plant in Frederickson to bottle that magic fluid known the world over … Tacoma municipal water.
No longer will lovers of fine waters have to travel to sample our mountain water. Soon Tacoma water can travel to them, in convenient recyclable “Eco-Air” bottles.
Please, hold your snickers, Seattle. The company that handles much of the private-label bottled water sold in warehouse stores and supermarkets, as well as under its own label, thinks our water has the right stuff — or maybe lacks the wrong stuff. We’re at least as wholesome as the H2O from the other Niagara locales such as Stockton, Calif., Allentown, Penn., Phoenix and Houston.
Wait, Stockton? Really.
Anyway, we’ve been drinking it for years, and it hasn’t done us any harm (other than some excessive nose growth).
What’s not to like? A $50 million investment. Thirty-six jobs to start with. A market for all that water that Simpson Tacoma Kraft doesn’t use.
A news release from Pierce County quickly grabbed as much credit as possible even before Tacoma Water bosses had briefed the utility board. But, in the spirit of teamwork, the county generously spread the glory around. Take a bow, Gov. Jay Inslee’s Department of Commerce. Let’s have a hand for the Tacoma-Pierce County Economic Development Board.
“The team that came together to make this deal happen was top notch,” Susan Suess, senior vice president of the EDB, said in the release. “The State, Pierce County, and EDB were laser focused on ensuring that the client’s needs were met throughout the recruitment process.”
And who else? Maybe the city of Tacoma and Tacoma Water — both dues-paying members of the EDB? Without the water source and the contract negotiated by the water utility, it is unlikely Niagara would have built here, right?
Not according to Pierce County and the EDB, which give not a whisper, let alone a laser-focused shout-out, to Tacoma Water and its ratepayers.
What does a tough day look like in Olympia? At least on Gov. Inslee’s Twitter account, it looks like this: “@GovInslee C @##@#”
Holy mistaken identity, Batman!: No offense to U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer, but the Democrat from Da Harbor is one of the last hombres we’d ever confuse with an action movie star, current or former.
But it happened, much to Kilmer’s surprise and delight. The Nature Conservancy recently put out a news release commending Kilmer and fellow South Sound Congress rookie Denny Heck for their work on clean-water issues.
The accompanying photograph showed a Kilmer, all right — but it’s actor Val Kilmer. No apparent relation.
The news release was quickly corrected, but our man on the Hill was so flattered he wouldn’t let it die.
“I’m grateful to the Nature Conservancy for the awesome shout-out and, frankly, I was kind of psyched about the Val Kilmer comparison,” D. Kilmer wrote in a letter to donors. “In fact, I’ve been asking folks to start calling me ‘Ice Man’ and have been referring to Denny Heck as my ‘wingman’ (initially I spent a day referring to myself as ‘Batman’ and calling Denny ‘Robin’ … he begged me to knock it off).”
Before you get too smitten with the Hollywood analogies, remember this about your namesake: He played the Caped Crusader in 1995’s “Batman Forever,” then never again.
In other words, a one-term Batman.
Phelps squared: And while we’re on the subject of famous name-sharing, there’s this little encounter starring Kevin Phelps, the deputy Pierce County executive.
Seems the celebrity of being the county’s point man for the 2015 U.S. Open, combined with the rock-star status of being a finalist for Lakewood city manager and the No. 2 in the entity that landed Niagara Bottling, caught up with Phelps recently while he held court at the 2013 U.S. Open near Philly.
“So yesterday I had this guy come up to me inside the USGA Hospitality Booth at the U.S. Open and ask if he could take his picture with me,” Phelps posted on Facebook. “Evidently he has the same last name as me.
“So anyway I told Michael I would be glad to oblige. I asked him what business he was in and he said something about being in the gold business. Anyway — I was happy to make his day!”
And then they toasted with bottles of Tacoma water.Got news for The Nose? Write to TheNose@thenewstribune.com. Twitter: @thenosetribune