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Catherine Soper
Public Affairs Manager

Public hearing on commission size set for May 26; Request approval to bid Rail-Barge Facility

Post Date:05/17/2005

The Port of Everett has scheduled a public hearing to take citizen input on the request to increase the Port Commission size from three members to five.

The meeting will be held on May 26 at 9 a.m. in the Port Commission Room located at 2911 Bond Street, Everett.

The commissioners, at their discretion, can decide to place the question of increasing the commission from three- to-five members before the voters. The proponents of the size increase have indicated that they plan to seek signatures to place the measure on the ballot regardless of the commission’s decision. Approximately 4,400 signatures are required to secure a place on the ballot.

In addition to the increased commission size, the citizen request included two other ballot items. The requests include reducing the terms from six years to four, and have two of the positions run at-large elections.

To place the first issue on the ballot would cost $1.50 per registered voter, or approximately $72,500, according to the Snohomish County Auditor's office. The other two ballot items would cost taxpayers an additional $29,000, bringing the total to upwards of $100,000.

John Mohr, executive director of the Port of Everett, has worked with three and five-member commissions, and said both have their benefits.

“Both commission structures have some merits,” Mohr said. “The Port Commissioners have done an excellent job in their role, and I look forward to hearing the public's arguments for and against increasing the commission size.”

During the special meeting, the staff will also ask the commissioners to authorize the port to go out to bid for the Rail-Barge Facility, which was recently supported by the Tulalip Tribes. The port hopes to start construction on the rail-barge in August.

For more information on the commission structure, please contact Lisa Mandt, Community Relations Representative for the Port, at 425-388-0617 or by e-mail.

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