Port of Poulsbo considering bond to fund improvements | The Scuttlebutt

In the next few weeks, the port will re-examine its 2017 budget.

In last month’s The Scuttlebutt, I noted that among the port’s numerous fiscal concerns is the interest expense for borrowing several million dollars for marina capital improvements. This includes planning a replacement, floating breakwater.

Funding an additional annual expense of $150,000 in interest payments for a break-even marina is a major challenge. (As used here, the term “break even” means when revenues and expenses are netted together, there is no money left.)

Every funding source is on the table: bonding, commercial loans, moorage rate increases for marina residents, and a revised tax levy for Port District property owners. The preferred category is still the general obligation bond. The Port District’s excellent bond rating will certainly help.

There is some good news for our boating community. Boat owners with trailered vessels are limited in gaining water access by the few boat ramps available in Kitsap. The port’s boat ramp has long needed major repairs, and relief may be on the way. The exhaustive efforts of our executive director, Brad Miller, have put the port close to the top of the list of applicants for receiving a grant to cover 74 percent of the cost of this estimated $470,000 project. We should know more in June.

Parking lot progress: For those following the parking lot project jointly funded by the port and the City of Poulsbo, there is good news and bad news. First, the bad news: it is still unfinished. Good news? It will be over in a couple of weeks (or sooner). As with most construction projects where digging is involved, there is often a surprise or two. Damaging an underground electrical conduit by the contractor was one of these. We are hopeful the finished product will be worth the inconvenience and expense.

The origin of “peacoat”: For seafaring folks, from around 1723, a heavy topcoat was made from “pilot cloth,” a coarse, blue material with a nap on one side. This “P-cloth” clothing was later called a P-jacket, and eventually a P-coat. (In my Coast Guard Academy experience, at least for cadets and officers, the coat was called a “reefer.”)

Do you know the meaning of “scuttlebutt”? Send your answer to me at commissioner.swann@portofpoulsbo.com. The first response with the correct answer will be recognized in The Scuttlebutt’s next issue.

Got a naval term to offer? Share it and contribute to our community’s knowledge of its nautical heritage.

Invitation: Port commissioners meet at 7 p.m. the first and third Thursdays if the month at the floating conference room at the marina. Meetings are open to the public.

— Stephen L. Swann is a Port of Poulsbo commissioner. Email him at commissioner.swann@portofpoulsbo.com.