Report for Port of Bellingham Board Meeting April 17, 2018

In Common Voices, Local Government, News by commonnw


The meeting was called to order by President Ken Bell at 4:31 pm.  Vice President Bobby Briscoe and Secretary Michael Shepard were also in attendance.


No comments where made during the public comment period.

Minutes for the April 3, 2018 received unanimous approval.  Three consent items were approved.  The included authorization to enter into a Washington State Parks & Rec Commission RCO Grant Agreement for reimbursement of costs to purchase two new pump-out facilities at Blaine Harbor.  One question was raised about whether they met the new Puget Sound Discharge rules – the answer was yes.  Authorization of a purchase order for the Bellingham Shipping Terminal lighting upgrade project and execution of a release and settlement agreement with Starr Indemnity & Liability and Alaska National Insurance Company.

A series of presentations followed.  First was the 2018 Ski to Sea update.  The race will be Sunday, May 27th.  Zuanich and Marine Parks are being provided for race activities.  Changes in the format allow racers to do up to 3 legs.  There are expected to be 350 teams with a goal of 400.  40% of racers are from Whatcom County, 6% are Canadian.

The first quarter financial report noted $9.5 million in revenues compared to $8 million last year and $8.1 million in expenses.  4 slip and fall injury claims pending against the Port.  The storm water program is in compliance.  2 items at the pier that require response by August.  There was one report able safety incident.  40 public records requests were received.

The Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) update focused on the conversion from the State of Washington PERS (Public Employees Retirement System) retirement program to the LEOFF (Law Enforcement Officers and Fire Fighters) program.  Included will be a vote by employees on continued participation in Social Security.  The Department of Retirement Systems and Social Security will make presentations to the employees.

The Blaine Marine Industrial Area Update noted that a stakeholder meeting has been held, several breakwaters are in disrepair, the former Blaine Marina site will require $3.118 million for cleanup of which $2.5 million will come from a grant.  An additional $5.4 million will be spent on other projects in 2018.  Several more projects are scheduled 2019-2022.

Four action items received unanimous approval.

  1. A professional services agreement for engineering of bulkhead replacement.
  2. A consent decree with the Washington State Department of Ecology for cleanup at the Blaine Marina, Inc. site which was a fueling facility until 2015.  Cost is $8 million plus.
  3. Approval of a sublease with Cohanim Bellwether LLC for Building A, located at 21 Bellwether Way.
  4. Resolution No. 1371 authorizing the sale of 1.733 acres for Project 2 to Harcourt Bellingham LLC, for $1.6 million, or $22 per square foot.  The project will include three mixed-use commercial and residential buildings with underground parking.  Sale to close by May 7th.

Other business included a discussion by the three Port Commissioners on setting up work sessions.

Meeting adjourned at 6:47 pm.

~ Submitted by a Citizen Journalist for Common Threads NW