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to the

Ports-to-Plains Region

July 18, 2017

Volume Number 15
Issue Number 14

Ports-to-Plains is built upon small local communities working together and having a global impact. We have achieved many successes, including more than a billion dollars in highway investment in our corridor, but the key has always been about the local supporters coming together to work for the larger goals of our region.  This newsletter features several articles that highlight this winning strategy.  

At the local level, West Texas Mayors are coming together to work on the critical issues of the region.  The mayors of Del Rio, Texas and Acuna, Coahuila are leading a delegation to Mazatlan, Mexico next month to highlight their port of entry and the ability to capitalize on the Ports-to-Plains Corridor as a critical freight corridor.  

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke to the National Governors Association last week to highlight the important trade relationship between Canada and the U.S., and to highlight to the governors the local impact this relationship has in their communities.  

Energy Secretary Rick Perry met with his Mexican counterpart seeking to boost energy ties, something that is very important to the Ports-to-Plains region.  

With so many exciting things happening, you will certainly want to attend our 20th Annual Conference September 12 – 14 in Lubbock.  See the information below to register and make your travel arrangements. 

 Michael Reeves, President

We are a voice for our small town, grassroots members who may otherwise not have access to the right audiences, as well as a conduit for industry to come together in support and promotion of transportation improvements.

We are committed to working as an Alliance to improve transportation infrastructure and business networks opportunities, by advocating for appropriate funding levels, so business and industry can thrive.

We are focused on the economic and business interests that are the lifeblood of the region.


 Extension of I-27/Ports to Plains Corridor

The proposed extension of Interstate 27  will be a major backbone for the energy industry in Texas serving top oil and gas producing counties as well as the growing wind energy industry.

Has your organization considered the resolution supporting the Extension of Interstate 27?

Have you individually added your name supporting the Resolution?

Please share with your Texas Friends!

Please click here to add your personal name to the Resolution in Support of Expansion on Interstate 27

Please click here to downland a draft organizational resolution for consideration by local governments and non-profit organizations.  (Word Document) 


Mark your Calendars to join us for the
20th Anniversary Reunion Ports-to-Plains Alliance Conference
September 12-14, 2017 -- Lubbock, TX!

Register HERE 

US, Mexico eye closer energy ties as NAFTA talks loom

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The United States and Mexico are looking to boost energy ties as the two countries prepare for the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, officials said Thursday.

U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, who met in Mexico with his counterpart, Pedro Joaquin Coldwell, called the United States' southern neighbor "a very, very important partner" on energy.

Joaquin Coldwell said his country plans two new pipelines to import U.S. natural gas in addition to the 17 that already exist.

Mexico's energy sector was wholly state-run for decades until a 2013 energy overhaul allowed some private-sector activity, and Perry noted that NAFTA did not cover energy when the trade pact was implemented in 1994.

"I'm very supportive of the renegotiation," Perry said. "To renegotiate this is good for all participants, particularly in the energy sector."

The talks, expected to begin about a month from now, will also include Canada, NAFTA's third partner.

Perry said he expects to start exchanging letters on NAFTA with his counterparts in the coming weeks and hopes a new trade deal will allow for a North American energy strategy that "will make the entire region a powerful energy source for the world."

Mexico is the United States' second-largest partner in energy trade, with 58 percent of U.S. gas exports and 40 percent of U.S. oil exports crossing the border.

President Enrique Pena Nieto's office said in a statement that he met privately with Perry and both parties agreed to cooperate on energy security and market integration.

At governors gathering, Trudeau takes case to preserve NAFTA directly to states

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made an impassioned defense of free trade here Friday, appealing to the nation’s governors to help spread a positive message ahead of the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement demanded by President Trump.

Trudeau’s keynote speech marked the first time a foreign leader of Trudeau’s rank has addressed the National Governors Association. His appearance underscored the efforts by both Canada and Mexico to court state executives as potential allies at a time when the president’s trade rhetoric has raised doubts about the U.S. commitment to multinational free trade agreements.

Trudeau stressed that NAFTA has provided enormous benefits to all three countries and underscored his belief that the vitality of the relationship between the United States and Canada must be maintained through the coming negotiations.

“Sometimes getting it right means refusing to take the politically tempting shortcomings,” he warned. He cited such possible changes as new trade barriers, preferential provisions for local content or “homegrown players.” The consequences, he said, could be harmful to all parties, and he warned, “Once we travel down that road, it can quickly become a cycle of tit for tat, a race to the bottom where all sides lose.”

Read on...

Myth Busted: Tourism Industry Is Thriving in America’s Top Oil & Gas Producing States

The idea that fracking and tourism can’t coexist is something that has been perpetuated by anti-fracking activists eager to ban the practice in states like Maryland and Florida. But there’s a problem with the claim that fracking and tourism can’t co-exist: it’s false. In fact, America’s top oil and gas producing states also have thriving tourism industries as EID’s latest infographic shows.

Let’s take a deeper dive into the tourism industries of some of the top oil and gas producing states in the country: Texas, North Dakota, and Pennsylvania.

Texas: U.S.’s No. 1 oil and natural gas producer

From 2008 – 2015:

  • Oil production increased 212 percent
  • Natural gas production increased 14 percent
  • Visitor spending increased 14 percent

Texas is the top oil and natural gas-producing state in America, producing 980 million barrels of crude oil and 7.9 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas from April 2016 to March 2017. To put this into perspective, if Texas were a country it would be the world’s third largest producer of both natural gas (behind only the United States and Russia) and oil (behind Saudi Arabia and Iraq). That level of production equated to roughly $26 million per day ($9.5 billion annually) in state and local revenue for Texans in 2016, according to recent data from the Texas Oil and Gas Association (TXOGA).

Read on...

Amarillo, Lubbock mayors form coalition to increase Panhandle, West Texas influence

Giving West Texas a louder voice at the state capital is a driving force behind a newly formed coalition of mayors.

Amarillo Mayor Ginger Nelson and Lubbock’s Dan Pope announced Thursday at City Hall they are creating a coalition of West Texas and Panhandle mayors to collaborate on projects and advocate for resources to benefit the area.

Pope, an eighth generation “proud West Texan” said he and other mayors in the region need to find a way to stand together and “be on the same team” and that there were plenty of opportunities for that in the last legislative biennium.

“Although sometimes we will compete, most days we’ll collaborate,” he said.

In many ways, Nelson said Lubbock’s current goals mirror Amarillo’s — better communication from City Hall to the community and positive promotion of the community to the Texas legislature.

“We (Texas Panhandle) just face different issues and we have different priorities than some of the larger areas, so it’s important for us to show up united on those issues so our voices can be heard and our opinions can be taken into consideration,” she said.

Looking back at this year’s legislative session, Nelson said areas the coalition of mayors can focus on are a continued push for more education funding, the extension of Interstate 27 and support for projects such as the building of a proposed Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine in Amarillo.

Read on...

The Second International Bridge

Acuna, Coah.- The mayor, Evaristo Lenin Pérez Rivera, reported that he will be accompanied by the mayor of Del Rio, Texas, Robert Garza, to the port of Mazatlán, to participate in the border crossing meeting, which is being convened by the Secretariat Of Public Relations, for the month of August.

Acuña and Del Rio, Texas, will present the project for the authorization of the second international bridge, which will allow the South Texas and Coahuila state business competition to be depleted.

He pointed out that they are being summoned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as international organizations and various agencies of the federal government, to present the projects for the authorization of border crossings, where the mayor, Assured that the project of the second international bridge for Acuña will have to be presented, which has already approved the location by both cities, which was presented in Mexico City.

He said that it will not touch the current administration to see the start of construction of the second international bridge, but, it is responsible for working on large projects, which give the municipality the opportunity of greater competitiveness, noting that it will correspond to the next administration , Work in the negotiations, so he assured that he will go to the city of Mazatlan, Sinaloa, to present a solid project, so that he does not lose track and thus avoid being out of budgets and resources Which are intended for the preparation of all technical projects, Seeking to integrate it into the binational Mexico-United States agenda.

He said that fortunately on our border there is an increase in border crossings and said, that this is one of the arguments that must be justified so that in the next 5 years, can start with the construction of the second international bridge. 

Upcoming Events


September 12 - Quarterly Ports-to-Plains Board Meeting, Lubbock, TX

September 12-14 - 20th Annual Ports-to-Plains Alliance Conference, Lubbock, TX

 Ports-to-Plains Alliance Staff

Michael Reeves
5401 N MLK Blvd. #395
Lubbock, TX 79403
P: 806-775-2338
F: 806-775-3981

Duffy Hinkle
Vice President of Membership & Marketing
5401 N MLK Blvd. #395
Lubbock, TX 79403
P: 806-775-3373
F: 806-775-3981

Joe Kiely
Vice President of Operations
PO Box 9
Limon, CO 80828
P: 719-740-2240
F: 719-775-9073

Jeri Strong
Executive Assistant
Ports-To-Plains Alliance
5401 N. MLK Blvd. Ste. 395
Lubbock, TX 79403
P: 806-775-3369

Richard "Buzz" David
Economic and Business Development
5629 NE Foster Rd.
Bainbridge Island, WA  09110
P: 806-678-3160

Cal Klewin
Executive Director
Theodore Roosevelt Expressway
PO Box 1306
22 E Broadway
Williston, ND 58802
P: 701-523-6171

Deb Cottier
Board of Directors
Heartland Expressway Association
706 West Third St.
Chadron, NE 69337
P: 308-432-4023

Jay Slemp
Eastern Alberta Trade Corridor
212 2nd Ave. W
Box 820
Hanna AB T0J 1P0
P: 403-854-0424