Here is the information about a recent press release from Ecology (state Department of Ecology News Release 13-122, May 7, 2013, ecy.wa.gov). Every year this group goes to Eastern Washington to train. Most of the spill responders reside in Western Washington.
They could save a lot of time, per diem and energy for transportation if they held it in the Tacoma area where most people could attend without accruing the costs associated with per diem.
There are plenty of training facilities — such as Camp Murray — that could be used. As an Ecology employee, I raised the issue every year with no adequate response. The spill-response group does wonderful work but they are seldom held accountable for their outrageous spending. They use their importance to obfuscate how much waste is involved running that program.
As a past state worker, private citizen and concerned taxpayer. I believe it is important to fund state programs adequately and, in turn, managers have an ethical obligation to seek ways to reduce their costs and waste. The Spill Response Program has not met their ethical obligation.