League of Women Voters Observer Corps notes

Submitted by the League of Women Voters

The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan organization, encourages informed participation in government. The ObserverCorps attends and takes notes at government meetings to expand public understanding of public policy and decisions. The notes do not necessarily reflect the views of the League or its members.

Friday Harbor Town Council meeting of May 4

Mayor Jackson proclaimed the week of April 30- till May 6 is recognition of Office of Profession Municipal Clerk week.

The first meeting to allocate the lodging tax in 2024 will be the week of May 8-12. The expected estimate of funds available for distribution is $450,000.00, in line with prior years.

The Council approved request was made to move the Town deposit account from Key Bank to Savi Bank to save on fees. The Council approved a resolution to authorize the mayor to execute a contract with Bitco Software LLC to furnish and install Permit Software and provide annual support to the Town Community Development and Planning Department. Cost will be $15,000.00 annually and is fixed for the first 3 years. Implementation is expected in six months. The software allows for centralized permit tracking.

Council was notified of a noise variance for work on lower Spring Street to begin on May 7 through 11th between 10 pm and 5 am. The closure will allow construction work to commence at 40 & 50 Spring Street between First and Front Street. Detour routes will be established.

Mayor Jackson asked to explore a Friday Harbor Music Festival. Council members proposed considering spring dates to avoid conflicts with summer and fall events and a venue that would not be weather dependent and recommended focusing on musical talent in the islands.

Town Administrator Denis Kulseth reported that current issues with ferries both to the mainland and inter-island are being discussed with our state representatives and Olympia with an emphasis on improving the inter-island performance. Attempts to apprehend the individuals who are defacing areas around Sunken Park with graffiti are ongoing. Citizen support would be appreciated.

The difficulty finding contractors for small jobs within the town is being addressed. Both wastewater renovation improvement project bids (were rejected due to higher-than-expected costs. The town will review the project again and issue a new request for bids.