Port Angeles port’s draft budget 13 percent higher
By Paul Gottlieb
Peninsula Daily News
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The preliminary budget will be discussed at a port board of commissioners workshop at 9 a.m. Thursday in the meeting room of the port administrative building, 338 W. First St.
There will be an opportunity for public comment, port President John Calhoun said Tuesday.
The spending plan would increase to $6.9 million compared with 2013 projected spending of $6.1 million, interim Executive Director Ken O’Hollaren said Tuesday.
It would be fueled by projected 2014 operating revenues of $8.9 million that also will cover $2 million for facility maintenance and equipment replacement.
The port expects to experience continued growth in its business lines including log-yard activities.
“We’re very optimistic on the log yard,” O’Hollaren said.
Commissioners decided Monday at their regular meeting that the new budget will not include a tax increase.
New positions for 2014 include a property manager and marine terminal operations supervisor, while vacant accounting clerk and log yard machine operator positions also would be filled.
New part-time workers also would fill a total of 1.7 full-time-equivalent positions to provide security when vessels are berthed at Terminals 1 and 3.
The “2014 Capital Projects and Budget Assumptions” report presented by port staff at Monday’s meeting predicts that a new permanent executive director will be hired by April.
The newly created position of director of environmental affairs held since June by former Executive Director Jeff Robb will be vacated by July 31, 2014.
The report had the position filled by one of four existing port directors and port Environmental Specialist Jesse Waknitz.
But Calhoun said he wants the position to be filled at least through the end of 2014.
It should be funded in case the new executive director wants to fill it on a permanent basis, Calhoun said.
“I will urge the new executive director to use his or her judgement to accomplish . . . the environmental work that needs to go forward,” he said.
Calhoun said the salary for the position will be “considerably less” than the $138,000 that Robb’s salary was set at when he resigned his executive director position following a whistle-blower complaint by port Director of Business Development Colleen McAleer, who now also does property management.
Filling the property manager position “allows a full-time focus in business development by the director of business development,” according to the budget report.
McAleer is running in the Nov. 5 general election against Del DelaBarre for the board’s Position 1 seat now held by Paul McHugh.
She confirmed Tuesday that she will quit her port position whether or not she wins the election.
The largest single projected capital expenditure projected for 2014 is $1.5 million that will match a $1.5 million federal grant to redevelop Terminal 1, O’Hollaren said.
The commissioners may vote on individual budget items Thursday to give the staff direction on preparing a final budget, Calhoun said.
The workshop is not expected to last past noon, Calhoun and O’Hollaren said.
Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5060, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last modified: October 29. 2013 5:47PM