Port of Grays Harbor

Commission Meeting

January 10, 2017

The Port of Grays Harbor Commission Meeting for January 10, 2017 was called to order at 9:00 a.m.

Alissa Shay, Business Development Manager, led the meeting in the Pledge of Allegiance.

Those in attendance at the meeting were as follows:

COMMISSION AND STAFF
Chuck Caldwell - Commissioner
Stan Pinnick - Commissioner
Jack Thompson - Commissioner
Gary Nelson - Executive Director
Arthur Blauvelt - Legal Counsel
Mary Nelson - Director of Finance & Administration
Mike Johnson - Contract & Project Manager
Randy Lewis - Director of Environmental and Engineering Services
Leonard Barnes - Deputy Executive Director
Alissa Shay - Manager of Business Development
Marisa Yauch - Executive Administrative Assistant
Seth Taylor - Marine Terminals Manager
Shannon Anderson - Business & Trade Development Asst.
Kayla Dunlap - Public Affairs Manager
Lisa Benn - Accounting Manager
Ross Read - Operations Manager

VISITORS
Shelli Hopsecger - CCAI
Fred Rapp - Custom Security/ReachOne
Rod Lake - Laborers Local 252
Rob Bearden - Westport Mayor
John Lynn - GHCOG
Dru Garson - GGHI
Linda Orgel - CCH
Arnie Martin - GHAS
Molly Bold - New PGH Employee

Items discussed and action taken where required is as follows:

MINUTES:
1. By motion made by Commissioner Caldwell, seconded by Commissioner
Pinnick and unanimously approved, the Commission adopted the Minutes of December 13, 2016 Regular Commission Meeting as recorded in the Minutes Book No. 20 on pages 43 through 50 inclusive.

2. By motion made by Commissioner Caldwell, seconded by Commissioner Pinnick and unanimously approved, the Commission adopted the Minutes of December 21, 2016 Special Commission Meeting as recorded in the Minutes Book No. 20 on pages 51 through 54 inclusive.

VOUCHERS:
1. By motion made by Commissioner Pinnick, seconded by Commissioner Caldwell, the Commission unanimously approved for payment those Payroll Vouchers issued December 20, 2016 and January 5, 2017, ACH/Wire Transfers No. 99900791 through and including No. 99900801 and General Disbursement Vouchers No. 92950 through and including No. 93135 for payment in the amount of $2,513,799.98.

Before beginning the regular meeting Commissioner Thompson announced that Bob Gibbons a career Longshoreman with the Port had passed away this week. Commissioner Thompson called for a moment of silence to remember this employee.

Commissioner Thompson then mentioned that Molly Bold was in attendance at the meeting today. She has recently been hired as the Westport Marina Business Manager and will begin Monday, January 23rd with PGH.

Commissioner Pinnick announced a recent donation to the Port by Dr. George Powers. He donated a photo of a Port log stacker that had been painted for the bicentennial of the Port. It was passed around and will be displayed in the Port office lobby. The Port thanks him for this kind donation.

REPORTS:
Marina Dredging Report
Randy Lewis reported on the status of dredging planned for the Westport Marina. The last bathymetry survey was completed in 2013 which shows the areas of need. Extensive testing of disposal materials has been conducted and surveys show which areas will need to be disposed of upland rather than being replenished in the water disposal sites. 245,000 cubic yards of sediment are marked for removal and about 41,000 cy were determined to be unsuitable for in water disposal. These areas were found to be high in PVC pipe breakdown and dioxin which negatively affects small marine life. This portion will be completed with a suction dredge and placed into a set of three ponds designated for this upland disposal. The entire dredging project is expected to take about three months if the whole 245,000 cy needs to be removed. The earliest the project may begin would be fall of 2017.

Commissioner Thompson asked about the difference in cost between using the clam shell removal or suction dredge. Mr. Lewis replied that he is not sure of the exact cost comparison, but in this case we would not be able to dispose of the sediment upland without using the suction dredge. Dredging two different ways would result in a much higher mobilization cost if this were to be completed for each. So, completing the whole project using the suction dredge is the most cost effective method for the project.

Commissioner Thompson asked how much money the Port has paid into the dredging project at this point. Ms. Nelson was uncertain of the amount, but will get it to the Commissioners. Mr. Nelson believed it would be somewhere between $400,000 and $500,000.

After the brief recess and within the meeting Ms. Nelson reported the Port has currently spent $315,000 on the Marina dredging project.

Public Information Report
Kayla Dunlap reported updates to the Contanda Project. The City of Hoquiam has contracted with law firm, Phillips Burgess, for review of the shoreline permit application. Upon completion of the review, the firm will submit a recommendation to the city on how to proceed.

Port staff and Commissioner Pinnick attended the Legislative Send-Off luncheon last week at the Log Pavilion.

The Port will send staff to meet with our coastal caucus members on January 31st, for Ports and Maritime Day at the Legislature.

The Port will be holding our 4th Annual Business Report Wednesday, February 15th at 7:30 a.m. at the Log Pavilion.

Port staff has been working with IT and General Counsel to ensure a thorough records retention application is ready for the two social media platforms intended to be used by the Port for outreach. After research and input from other public agencies an appropriate application has been determined and the Port hopes to launch a social media presence in the next few weeks.

Vessel Activity
Leonard Barnes reported that in December 2016 the Port handled 13 deep water ships and no barges resulting in 240,755 MT of cargo. Handling 13 ships in December was the most in one month for 2016. Fourth quarter and first quarter are historically the strongest quarters and this is holding true for 2016-2017. A total of 103 vessel calls from 98 deep water vessels and 5 barges totaling 2,124,619.44 MT of cargo were handled at PGH. This is the second greatest amount of cargo handling in 25 years; a great year.

Mr. Barnes commented on REG and how steady they have been with both inbound and outbound traffic. AGP has been expanding to having 2 or 3 commodities loaded per ship allowing more opportunity for sales.

Public Comment:
Fred Rapp of Elma commented on the auto carrier train cars coming through Elma. He is curious about cars going towards the Port that are empty; are they for imported vehicles. Yes, Leonard Barnes replied that Pasha has acquired new import accounts which do require more vehicle carrier cars to be brought in from different areas if there are not enough waiting when the cars are unloaded from the vessel.

Mr. Rapp also commented on his appreciation for the 150 new jobs that will be coming to the area as a result of the Overstock.com lease.

He announced a couple of upcoming events in the county. Saturday, January 21st will be a wine festival at the Elma fairgrounds and Friday, February 11th will be the Pair of Hearts Ball at Quinault Beach Resort.

ACTION/RESOLUTION ITEMS:
Action Item No. 1
Art Blauvelt reported on an emergency declared to issue contracts for diving and recovery of the vessel Restless C. The vessel first sank November 2, 2016; the owners were able to pay costs to raise the vessel at that time. It remained afloat until December 28th when it sank in the marina again. At this time, the owners do not have funds to raise and salvage the vessel. On January 6th the owners signed a Waiver and Release form allowing the Port to raise and destroy the vessel. This release allows the Port to take care of the vessel, but does not release them from the financial obligation to reimburse the Port its costs under the Derelict Vessel Act. There are two other vessels that will be raised on the same day, so this will be the most economical way to get the boat out of the marina.

The original estimate was about $10,000 for this vessel to be raised, but after further inspection the vessel is wedged under the float which will complicate removal and increase cost. Costs are now estimated at $12-14 thousand dollars to raise, plus disposal fees.

Commissioner Thompson inquired on if we will need two actions for this item. It was determined by Mr. Blauvelt that two actions would be needed for completion of this item.

Commissioner Caldwell asked for an update on how many vessels in the marina have insurance. Lisa Benn responded that the Port is up to 76% of annual moorage tenants having proof of insurance turned into the marina office. There are outstanding boaters that have responded that they are not able to obtain insurance for various reasons and some are out of the area for the season and unreachable at this time. Marina staff will continue to work to ensure that all annual moorage boaters are insured.

Commissioner Thompson inquired on how many boats sank in the marina this year. Mr. Blauvelt replied that it was about 5; one sank in 2015 and was not removed from the marina until 2016.

Motion to authorize the Executive Director’s findings of an emergency and ratify the awarding of the contracts for Brumfield Construction, Inc., was made by Commissioner Pinnick and seconded by Commissioner Caldwell. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0.

Motion to authorize the Executive Director’s findings of an emergency and ratify the awarding of the contracts for Express Diving Services, LLC, was made by Commissioner Pinnick and seconded by Commissioner Caldwell. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0.

Resolution 2918
Mary Nelson reported on the authorization of Port Commissioner travel in 2017. This travel policy originated on February 12, 1991 and is revised annually.

The “Commission Travel” policy allows the Commission to approve anticipated travel for the coming year. Any travel not listed will need to be separately approved in advance of the travel. The proposed Resolution No. 2918 includes travel to local, state and national organizations that Port Commissioners attend annually for the betterment of the Port. All travel listed in Resolution No. 2918 is included in the 2017 budget.

Motion to adopt Resolution No. 2918: Authorizing Anticipated Commission Travel During the Calendar Year 2017 was made by Commissioner Caldwell and seconded by Commissioner Pinnick. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0. Resolution adopted.

Resolution 2919
Art Blauvelt stated that annually, the Commission reviews Executive Director Gary Nelson’s performance and makes any needed adjustment in his salary. Commissioner Thompson met with Mr. Nelson to discuss his performance. Recommendation is made to raise Mr. Nelson’s compensation to $194,716.00 for 2017, an increase of 2%.

In addition, Commissioner Thompson is recommending a change in the amount of life insurance provided by the Port for Mr. Nelson. This will be increased to $230,000.00 with the maximum premium cost to the Port set at $100.00 per month.

Commissioner Pinnick thanked Mr. Nelson for his hard work at the Port this year.

Commissioner Thompson stated that almost all goals for 2016 were met or are in motion for completion. Mr. Nelson thanked the Commissioners for their appreciation and credited all of the leaders of Port staff which are very efficient. He is proud to be part of such a great team.

Motion to adopt Resolution 2919: Amending the 2017 Compensation Terms of Mr. Gary G. Nelson’s Employment as Executive Director of the Port District was made by Commissioner Pinnick and seconded by Commissioner Caldwell. Motion passed unanimously with a vote of 3-0. Resolution Adopted.

Resolution 2920
Mary Nelson presented a resolution to update the bar pilot premium pay program and pilotage services operating reserve fund; this resolution was originally adopted in 2006. During these 10 years, the reserve fund and premium pay program have achieved the original objectives. The Port has also taken steps during this time to improve the bar pilot base compensation package to a more competitive level.

The new adjustments will help plan for future financial needs which may include a third bar pilot and a new (used) pilot boat to meet both safety and operational needs of the district. The original resolution in 2006 did not provide any flexibility to adjust the reserve fund and premium payment funding formulas based on the needs of the division.

The proposed resolution 2920 allows greater flexibility to annually review the status of the pilot compensation package and the Pilot Services Operating Reserve Fund.

Motion to adopt Resolution No. 2920: Authorizing the Executive Director to Annually Establish the Funding Formula for the “Pilotage Services Operating Reserve Fund” and the Port Employed Bar Pilots’ “Premium Pay Program”, was made by Commissioner Caldwell and seconded by Commissioner Pinnick. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0. Resolution adopted.

Public Comment:
Arnie Martin from the City of Hoquiam complemented the Port on the new jobs coming to Satsop Business Park. He asked if they have a plan to offer a van pool for employees coming from the Aberdeen/Hoquiam areas to Satsop. Ms. Shay replied that this is definitely something that is being looked into and considered.

WORKSHOP:
PGH Recreation Properties
Shelli Hopsecger began the workshop by reviewing things that have changed in regards to the Port recreation properties in recent years. As Port properties have been acquired, responsibility to maintain these public recreation and access properties has increased. It has become a new challenge to maintain this new normal expectation.

A large part of managing the recreation properties is balancing the Port’s allocation of resources. This is a balance of the percent of revenues, percent of expenses and percent capital invested back into each line of business which includes grant funding.

In 2016 a thorough plan and goals for all Port recreation properties was designed with the partnership of Grays Harbor Council of Governments. Large considerations included access (ADA accessibility when possible), sense of place, comfort & safety, and fiscal responsibility.

Commissioner Caldwell brought up the signage issues for Friends Landing. Proper signage on the highway is very important for RV travelers. This is an area that is lacking for the Friends Landing facility. Alissa Shay is working towards signage improvements on the highway.

An important consideration is how the Port can provide access to all of the recreation facilities with resource limitations. What are the main goals for public access the Port is trying to provide and why. Are there overlaps to the available resources within the Port; are similar access opportunities available at more than one Port recreation location. Friends Landing and Westport Marina both offer boat launch facilities, but they are different types of access.

Once updates are made, they are expected to be maintained. Before the Port reconstructed the viewing tower in Westport in 2011, the old structure required an annual paint job due to the harsh weather and salt water. By investing in the upgrade, annual maintenance fees are gone but it was a substantial cost to improve.

All access areas cost the Port money in maintenance, but any new fees for boat launching at 28th Street or otherwise would not be popular with the public.

Commissioner Thompson mentioned some issues he gets calls about in regards to the 28th Street. He hears from people frustrated with the parking and having to climb through train cars to get to their vehicles if they have parked on the other side of the tracks.

Mr. Barnes stated the Port is dealing with vandalism, drug issues and garbage issues in addition to regular wear and tear on the facility. It is a constant battle to keep this area open to the public for free while dealing with the issues of parking and such that are only an issue during the 90 day fish window.

A few solutions including daytime access hours and a gate were discussed. These have been tried in the past and drew complaints from locals that enjoy the facility.

Port staff agrees that all of these facilities are great, but there are big expenses incurred that require a substantial part of the budget.

Ms. Shay stated they are working on big picture plans for Friends Landing upgrades to improve visitor experience. Commissioner Caldwell inquired on the trail upgrades that have been discussed. Ms. Shay stated these trail upgrades have been bid and would cost about $100,000 to $150,000. The Port is looking to prioritize and fix the more severe areas first. The trail issues are mostly of tree roots growing under the trail causing tripping hazards and difficult access for wheel chairs.

Ms. Shay mentioned another change planned for Friends Landing. A review of rates by an RV park specialist suggested that RV rates should be increased to come to be more competitive. If too low, a traveler may think the facility is not as nice as other listed; an increase of $5 per day for an RV and $3 per day for an RV of a senior/disabled person are proposed.

We continue to rely on partnerships. Mr. Barnes agreed and pointed out the importance of communication on both sides. Before grants are sought it is important to ensure all ideas have been explored and the best plan for all parties is being presented.

Ms. Hopsecger mentioned the surveys of a few of the recreation properties that were completed by users. That information is very valuable to have from people who visit the properties frequently for prioritization of needs.

Commissioner Pinnick commented that the Port continue the same course when it comes to the financial picture and having quarterly reviews for updates. We will need to increase income in some areas in order to put money back in to maintenance and upgrades.

Mr. Nelson stated the most important thing for these public access areas is health and safety.

Ms. Hopsecger concurred that this is a big responsibility balancing all of the different properties since they all have different needs and interests. Keeping the public satisfied with the facilities while balancing fiscal responsibility continues to be a challenge. The Port works to distribute funds for safety and improvements as allowed in the budget.

NEW BUSINESS:
2017 Board Reorganization/2017 Commission Appointments
It was moved by Commissioner Pinnick and seconded by Commissioner Caldwell that the 2017 Board be as follows:

President - Jack Thompson
Vice President - Chuck Caldwell
Secretary - Stan Pinnick

Motion passed with all Commissioners in favor.

It was moved by Commissioner Pinnick and seconded by Commissioner Caldwell that the 2017 Commission Appointments be as follows:

Auditor - Mary Nelson
Legal Counsel - Ingram, Zelasko & Goodwin
Executive Director - Gary G. Nelson

Motion passed with all Commissioners in favor.

After an addition to appoint the new Business Manager at the Westport Marina, Molly Bold, to be the Port staff representative for the Washington Coast Sustainable Salmon Partnership, it was moved by Commissioner Pinnick and seconded by Commissioner Caldwell that the following assignments be made for 2017:

American Assoc. of Port Authorities
Jack Thompson - Commissioner
Gary Nelson - Staff Member

Association of Pacific Ports
Chuck Caldwell - Commissioner
Gary Nelson - Staff Member

Chehalis Basin Fisheries Task Force
Stan Pinnick - Commissioner
Ken Rausch - Staff Member

Chehalis Basin Partnership
Chuck Caldwell - Commissioner
Mike Johnson - Staff Member

G.H. Council of Governments
Chuck Caldwell - Commissioner
Leonard Barnes - Staff Member

G.H. Shipping Club
Stan Pinnick - Commissioner
Shannon Anderson - Staff Member

Greater Grays Harbor Inc.
Jack Thompson - Commissioner
Leonard Barnes - Staff Member

Pacific NW Waterways Association
Stan Pinnick - Commissioner
Kayla Dunlap - Staff Member

Port of Grays Harbor Foundation
Stan Pinnick - Commissioner
Gary Nelson - Staff Member

Thurston County Chamber of Commerce
Chuck Caldwell - Commissioner
Alissa Shay - Staff Member

Thurston County EDC
JackThompson - Commissioner
Alissa Shay - Staff Member

Vision 2020
Stan Pinnick - Commissioner
Alissa Shay - Staff Member

Washington Coast Sustainable Salmon Partnership
Jack Thompson - Commissioner
Molly Bold - Staff Member

Washington Public Ports Association
Jack Thompson - Commissioner
Gary Nelson - Staff Member

Motion passed with all Commissioners in favor.

Commissioner Thompson called for a 5 minute recess at 10:57 a.m., the meeting resumed at 11:02 a.m.

The Regular Meeting was recessed at 11:02 a.m. for the Annual Meetings of the Industrial Development Corporation, Port of Grays Harbor Foundation Members and Port of Grays Harbor Foundation Board of Directors.
The Port of Grays Harbor Foundation Board of Directors Meeting was closed at 11:11 a.m. and the Regular Commission Meeting reconvened.

NEW BUSINESS (continued):
Gary Nelson went over a few dates for upcoming events:
•January 16-20 – Gary Nelson, Leonard Barnes and Commissioners will travel to the Midwest. Will visit REG in Ames, IA. Eurosource, in Ames, IA. Iowa Soybean Association. John Deere assembly line plant, Waterloo, IA. AGP, Omaha, NE. Reps from Union Pacific, Omaha, NE.
•January 31 – Port’s Day at the Legislature
•February 14 – Grays Harbor Shipping Club Crab Feed
February 15 – Ocean Shores outreach presentation

There being no further business to come before the Commission, the Regular Meeting recessed at 11:17 a.m.

The Board then went into Executive Session to consider the acquisition, sale or lease of real estate and to discuss with Port’s legal counsel matters relating to agency enforcement actions, litigation or potential litigation. No action to be taken during Executive Session. It was announced that the Executive Session would last an hour and fifteen minutes.

The Executive Session ended at 12:45 p.m. after one 15 minute extension, and the Regular Meeting adjourned at that time.