NAHCOTTA - The Port of Peninsula was awarded $100,000 from Pacific County's 0.08 Local Sales Tax Fund at the July 15 meeting of the Pacific County Board of Commissioners.

The Pacific County Council of Governments, or PCCOG, selected the Nahcotta Mooring Basin-Harbor Dredging, Sedimentation Analysis and Prevention Measure, as its number one-ranked project and acted to award $5,000 per year for 20 years.

Howard Teague, manager at the Port of Peninsula, said these are funds from local sales taxes already collected by the county, sent in to the state, and then .08 percent of that is returned to counties for economic development purposes.

This dredging project is anticipated to cost the port between $560,000 and $592,000.

The Port of Peninsula Board of Commissioners expressed their thanks to the Pacific County Board of Commissioners and especially Commissioner Bud Cuffel for the action.

This is the first time the Port of Peninsula has applied for any .08 percent funds, and port officials revised and downsized their request so that some funds could be awarded to other public facilities.

County Commissioner Jon Kaino made the motion and Commissioner Pat Hamilton, seconded the awarding of these funds that will benefit 271 local oyster industry jobs by dredging the port to adequate depths so that oyster workers can safely enter and exit the Nahcotta mooring basin.

In March of this year, the port was able to obtain a $325,000 interest-free 20-year loan from Washington State Community Economic Revitalization Board, along with a $100,000 grant from (CERB). The intent to use $135,000 of port funds as initial start-up funds for the construction of a containment berm to store the dredge materials as they are removed from the boat basin.

Awarding these funds means the port will be able to apply this $5,000 per year as part of its $16,250 annual loan repayment to CERB. This strategy that prevents any increase in taxes for property owners in the port district at this time.

Dave Clemens, chairman of the Board of the Port of Peninsula, said he was very pleased with the county commissioners' decision. He was also glad to receive notice from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that they have sent out a Public Notice of Application for Permit to Dredge the Boat Basin. A public review period closes on Aug. 8. Soon after that time construction of the containment berm can take place with dredging taking place after that.

Teague provided a brief explanation about the 20-foot-wide addition that is going up on the north end of the port shop/office. This will provide storage for the port's forklift and safety cage along with the port's riding lawn mower and trailer. It also provides for ADA access to a new board of commissioners meeting room and port manager's office, along with an ADA restroom to be available during normal business hours and board meetings.

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