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Port Passes Budget for 2022, 2022-2026 Capital Improvement Plan

Capital improvements, customer service, and sustainability to provide economic benefits — improving quality of life for the region
November 16, 2021

The Port of Seattle Commission passed its 2022 Budget and 2022-2026 Capital Improvement Plan today, with an emphasis on delivering an equitable recovery by safely operating our airport and maritime gateways, advancing capital improvement projects, and continuing our focus on customer service and sustainability initiatives.

“By sustaining significant construction projects and community programs, the Port of Seattle was able to help the region weather the economic storm that persisted last year from the COVID pandemic. The Port’s 2022 budget and construction projects will continue to focus on helping those most in need of economic benefit throughout our region,” said Port of Seattle Commission President Fred Felleman. “Our robust 2022-2026 Capital Improvement Plan seeks to improve customer service while expanding opportunities where they’re most needed.”

“Our budget and capital improvement plan reflect a rising recovery from increased activity,” said Port of Seattle Executive Director Steve Metruck. “More than 80 percent of the Port’s funds come from operating revenue and fees, which began to improve midway through last year. Despite some continued uncertainty, we are in a better position to begin investing in our own capacity after two years of steep cuts and to look more expansively at opportunities we can support in the region.”

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) anticipates that passenger volume will return to 94 percent of pre-COVID levels in 2022. While the highly diversified maritime division maintained commercial fishing, grain terminal, and recreational boating revenue in 2021, there were no Alaska cruises in 2020 and approximately 19 percent of pre-COVID passenger volume returned in 2021. The Port forecasts that cruise will return to 75 percent of pre-COVID levels in 2022, with over 200 vessel calls and over 900,000 revenue passengers.

The Port’s budget development relied heavily on the feedback of 100 community leaders. During a series of listening sessions, leaders pointed to capital projects, workforce development, and an emphasis on equity as key to delivering on the Port’s recovery mission. In addition to nine briefings during commission meetings, the Port hosted two public open houses in late October, covering Maritime, Economic Development, and Aviation budget and operations.

Detailed information on the budget and division highlights, including the annual Budget in Brief overview, can be found on the Port’s budget webpage.

Capital Improvement Plan

The Port marked major capital milestones in 2021 with completion of major construction on the airport’s North Satellite and International Arrivals Facility along with the Northwest Seaport Alliance’s planned completion of Terminal 5. In 2022, the Port will begin preparing for its next period of record growth for capital projects. The total capital budget for 2022 is $559.5 million and the five-year Capital Improvement Program increases to $4.4 billion.

2022-2026 CIP Budget—Highlights of the capital improvement plan projects include:

  • North Main Terminal Development at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA)
  • SEA Main Terminal Improvements Program
  • SEA C Concourse Building Expansion
  • SEA South Satellite Renovation Program
  • Terminal 46 North Pier Structure Replacement
  • Terminal 91 Berths 6 & 8 Redevelopment
  • Pier 66 Shore Power 
  • Terminal 91 Uplands development
  • Maritime Innovation Center at Fishermen’s Terminal

Operating Budget

The 2022 operating budget includes increases to expand Port capacity for planning and capital development, to maintain new airport facilities, implement new customer service programs, and support economic development and sustainability initiatives.

  • Total operating revenues: $766.9 million; $44.8 million
  • Total operating expenses: $499.1 million; $29.4 million
  • Net operating income before depreciation: $267.7 million; $74.1 million

New initiatives added to the operating budget since its introduction by Executive Director Metruck in October include:

  • Opportunity Youth Initiative: $1 million for 2022, with an additional $1 million anticipated from other partner sources next year.
  • Workforce Development Strategic Plan Implementation: $250,000 added to Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion to support four internal apprenticeship positions, a new initiative and additional support for engagement with community-based organizations for airport employment.
  • Maritime High School: $250,000 for activities to get youth on the water, develop curriculum, and increase awareness about maritime careers.
  • Regional Economic Development Support: $200,000 in Economic Development budget for small business support from the South King County Fund.
  • Human Trafficking Training: $100,000 added to the Aviation Division budget to work with POSPD, AVOPS, and AV Security to determine scope and activities.
  • Seattle Aquarium Permanent Exhibit: $100,000 to develop scope and design for a planned permanent exhibit in New Ocean Pavilion about how past, current, and projected Port projects and programs improve our environment, and advance sustainability and conservation. The Port would complete a Memorandum of Understanding with the Aquarium and commit $5 million over five years.
  • Supporting Kelp Restoration, Carbon Sequestration and Green Jobs Pathways: $70,000 added to the Maritime Environment & Sustainability budget to explore and promote new economic and environmental opportunities for kelp.
  • Offshore Wind Project: $50,000 for a joint study on offshore wind with the Port of Tacoma, contingent on matching funds from the Port of Tacoma.
  • New habitat improvement measures in the Duwamish River and Elliott Bay:
    • Fund a study of the hydrophone network in Puget Sound ($200,000)
    • Fund a shoreline habitat improvement project at sbəq̓ʷaʔ Park/Terminal 108 ($200,000)
    • Fund a scoping study for habitat improvements at Terminal 5 Southeast ($100,000)

Property Tax Levy

As a public Port in Washington, the Port may exercise a limited property taxing authority. The Port continues to maintain a low rate of the levy by maximizing operational revenue, fees, and bonds. In 2022 the levy provides 4.4 percent of the Port’s funds.

The 2022 tax levy is $81 million, a 3 percent increase from 2021. The median King County homeowner will pay an estimated $72 in taxes to the Port of Seattle in 2022, same as 2021, based on an estimated median King County home value of $640,000 in 2022.

The levy funds debt service payments on general obligation bonds, as well as strategic investments in job creation, environmental sustainability, and community programs. The airport operates without any tax revenue. Funding for SEA comes from fees, rents, or leases in place with airlines, tenants, and travelers.

Highlights of community programs fully or partially funded by the levy include:

  • South King County Community Impact Fund environmental and economic development grants
  • Duwamish Valley Community Equity Program
  • City of SeaTac community relief
  • Economic development programs in tourism, workforce development, maritime innovation, and Diversity in Contracting


Peter McGraw | Port of Seattle Media Officer
(206) 787-3446 |

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