Jefferson: Fires prompt officials to evaluate records storage

PORT TOWNSEND — Officials for both Jefferson County and city of Port Townsend say they are concerned about the security of their records after a sudden early morning fire ripped through Roy City Hall late last month.

That fire, which threatened city records, along with the arrest of an Okanogan man who tried to burn down the Okanogan County Courthouse a week earlier, have raised officials’ awareness of the need to duplicate essential documents.

“It’s something that is on our minds for sure,” Port Townsend City Clerk Pam Kolacy said Monday. “We’re not in great shape.”

Copies of minutes for Port Townsend City Council meetings and city ordinances prior to 1975 are stored at a state archives facility in Bellingham.

They are also on microfilm.

But ordinances, minutes and other documents from between 1975 and the mid-1990s exist only in paper form in the Waterman & Katz Building, meaning two decades of records could be lost in the event of a fire, Kolacy said.

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