Port of Bellingham Commission

Compiled by Bill McCallum

Action Taken at December 7, 2021 Meeting

Shall the commission:
132. Authorize the sale of one vessel for the nonpayment of moorage fees? An auction was held on January 6 at the Squalicum Harbor office for a 24-foot sailboat with unpaid moorage fees of $1,694, as of 11/12/2021. (10546/Consent Agenda E) Approved 3-0

133. Appoint Tamara Sobjack (chief financial officer) as auditor and Sarah Eastwood, (controller) as deputy auditor for fiscal year 2022? The auditor position reviews and certifies all payments, maintains control over all designated cash funds not invested and in compliance with state law and port policies. (10547/Consent Agenda F) Approved 3-0

134. Writeoff a delinquent balance of $12,936? Leonard Rivero from Surrey, B.C., Canada, had a boat moored in Blaine. The last boat payment was made on 7/12/2019. The boat was impounded and two auctions held; it did not sell. The boat is set for destruction. The total write-off for moorage, leaseholder tax, power, late fees and postage is $12,936. (10548/Consent Agenda G) Approved 3-0

135. Correct an error in the 2022 tax levy resolution? At the 11/16/2021 meeting, vote #125, the increased tax levy in terms of dollars was inadvertently left out of the Resolution 1399. The estimated levy rate will be $0.1803 per thousand of valuation. The regular property tax levy for 2022 will result in a total amount of $7,801,145. 10549/Consent Agenda H (Resolution 1399-A) Approved 3-0

136. Approve liability insurance standards for port agreements for fiscal year 2022? No changes have been made from 2021. Liability standards includes items like lease agreements, rental agreements, boathouse agreements, ground transportation, airline leases, air taxi agreements, aviation fuel providers, marine fuel providers, moorage, meetings and events. Most general liability insurance coverage is $1 million, aggregate is $2 million and aircraft liability is $5 million. (10550/Consent Agenda I) Approved 3-0

137. Appoint Industrial Development Corporation officers and establish the date, time and location of meetings for 2020? (Commission meeting as the board of directors of the Industrial Development Corporation.) President: Bobby Briscoe; vice president: Ken Bell; secretary: Michael Shepard; and treasurer: Tamara Sobjack. Meetings will be convened as needed, in conjunction with commission meetings. (10551/IDC #1-3) Approved 3-0

138. Approve the 2021 budget for the Industrial Development Corporation? (Commission meeting as the board of directors of the Industrial Development Corporation.) Anticipated revenues: $6,125; anticipated expenditures: $300; beginning cash balance: $29,644. This motion authorizes the IDC treasurer to approve distribution and payment of IDC funds in conjunction with the budget. (10552/IDC #4) Approved 3-0

139. Authorize a budget reallocation for the installation of security gates? At the 4/20/201 meeting, vote #46, the commission appropriated $175,00 to install security gates. A recent increase in thefts in the vicinity of Gate 5 and the weblockers was the reason for the security gates. They will be installed at Squalicum Harbor and the Fairhaven Marine Industrial Park, limiting access during specific hours to marina customers and weblocker tenants. The port received three bids for the project. The low bid was $254,951 from Perimeter Security Group of Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho; the high bid was $514,298. The revised budget is $326,000 and it includes a contingency fee. (10553/Consent Agenda J) Approved 3-0

140. Authorize the executive director to sign an agreement with the city of Bellingham for access to, and use of, the city’s 800HMz radio network? At the County Council meeting on 5/18/2021, vote #118, the county supported the city of Bellingham creating a countywide public radio system; the city would develop and operate an 800 MHz digital public radio system for use by public agencies in the county. The port’s analog radio frequencies are becoming outdated and allow only connection between Bellingham and Blaine. This partnership with the port and city will allow sharing of their frequency licenses and infrastructure and allow a connection with all of Whatcom County. (10555/Consent Agenda L) Approved 3-0

141. Adopt rental revenue standards for 2022? The base rent range will increase for the Harbor Mall, 625 Cornwall Avenue and warehouse/industrial properties; the upper end of the base rent range will be increased at Bellwether and Bayview buildings. Occupancy levels are high and the port charges market rates so it does not expect a fiscal impact. (10556/Consent Agenda M) Approved 3-0 

142. Approve a lease with Fairhaven Workstudios LLC (amendment #7) for property north of the Fairhaven Marine Industrial Park? At the 12/6/2016 meetings, vote #205, the commission approved an option agreement to lease 1.5 acres of undeveloped property for office and live/work studios, subject to city of Bellingham approval. Geotechnical concerns have reduced the number of buildings from three to two. The monthly payment is $500. This amendment expires on 6/30/2022. (10558/Consent Agenda O) Approved 3-0

143. Reaffirm Chmelik, Sitkin, & Davis as the port’s legal counsel for 2022? The firm’s hourly rate will increase from $275.00 to $300.00 for principals, and from $260 to $180 for associates and paralegals. (9847/Consent Agenda B) Approved 3-0

144. Set commission meetings dates for 2022? Meetings will be held on the first and third Tuesday of the month with a starting time of 4:00 p.m. Exceptions: one meeting will be held on the second Tuesday in July and August and one meeting on the first Tuesday in December. (10567/Consent Agenda C) Approved 3-0

145. Increase the base salary for the executive director by 5.0 percent? At the 2/19/2019 meeting, vote #19, the executive director’s base salary was raised by 3.0 percent to $177,317. (10568/Consent Agenda D) Approved 3-0 

146. Appoint officers for 2022? President: Bobby Briscoe; vice president: Ken Bell; secretary: Michael Shepard. See the endnote for board representatives. (10562/Action Item 1) Approved 3-0

147. Approve the 2021 districting plan? State law requires the Port of Bellingham to prepare a redistricting plan every 10 years, based on the most recent federal decennial census. The 2020 census gives the population of Whatcom County as 226,836. For equal distribution, each of the three districts should contain 75,612 people.  Precinct 234 is being moved from District 2 to District 1 and Precinct 136 is being moved from District 3 to District 1 to balance the population in the three districts. The plan contains the following: District 1: 75,499; District 2: 75,612; District 3: 75,725. (10564/Action Item 3) Approved 3-0

148. Authorize the executive director to accept a $2 million state grant for the rural broadband project? The grant will finance the construction of approximately 47.5 miles of fiber located north of Lynden and along the Canadian boarder; the fiber will pass approximately 450 homes. The state grant requires $1 million in local matching funds.The Whatcom County Economic Development Investment Board awarded a $1 million dollar grant to the broadband project. (10656/Action Item 4) Approved 3-0  

Whatcom Council of Governments:
Bobby Briscoe (Primary), Michael Shepard (Alternate)

Washington Public Ports Association:
Ken Bell (Trustee), Bobby Briscoe (Alternate)

Whatcom County Economic Development Investment Program:
Ken Bell (Primary), Bobby Briscoe (Alternate)

Western Crossing:
Michael Shepard (Primary), Ken Bell (Alternate)

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