Boeing this week will narrow its list of potential sites for building the 777X “down to a handful,” Commercial Airplanes CEO Ray Conner said in a message to company employees.

His message reiterated the company’s position that it had not withdrawn its second offer to the Machinists union, but that the offer had been rejected.

Following that “disappointing outcome,” Conner continued, “we have now moved on to the next steps in the down select process for 777X work placement, which will be completed early next year.”

The company says it received proposals from 22 states covering 54 sites. “We are encouraged by the quality and magnitude of the response,” Conner wrote.

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Those proposals include Washington state’s package of incentives, with $8.7 billion in future tax benefits.

Boeing spokesman Doug Alder declined to say whether Washington state remains in contention.

“We aren’t providing the status of any particular state or naming the locations in the process,” Alder said.