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Shelton Mason County Journal
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May 5, 2014     Shelton Mason County Journal
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May 5, 2014

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Page A-28 - Mason County Journal - Thursday, May 8, 2014 Fair: Port must revert fairgrourLds to airport use by year's end continued from page A- 1 to operate on the fairgrounds one last time this summer, provided the facility will permanently close this fall. "That came out of the blue this morning," Dobson said Tuesday. The Port of Shelton Commission approved leases with the fair and ro- deo associations Tuesday for July 23 through 28. The FAA mandated that the port return the fairgrounds to airport use by the end of last year because the port designated the land as airport reserve on its Airport Master Plan. A committee of Shelton Skookum Rotary Foundation members worked during the past few months to draft a plan to move the fairgrounds to a new location. FAA representatives have previously said they will allow the port to issue short-term leases for the fairgrounds -- if a plan to move the facility was in place. Skookum Rotary organizes Oyster- Fest at the fairgrounds each October. The committee previously pre- sented such a plan to the Port of Shelton Commission in April, but port commissioners said the plan did not include enough certainties to sway the FAA. The committee again presented its plan to the Mason County and Port of Shelton boards of commissioners Tuesday afternoon at a joint meet- ing. The committee presented the Ma- son County Commission with a re- quest to lease county land on Day- ton Airport Road behind the Mason County Public Works building. However, the county commission- ers were reticent to give Skookum Rotary a lease for the land, especially because the rotary still had other po- tential properties in mind. "I need the organization to decide where to go," Mason County Commis- sioner Randy Neatherlin said. Port of Shelton Commissioner Dick Taylor said governmental organiza- tions should not be involved in the running of an event center. He said an organization should purchase a property for the fair- grounds. "We're kicking it further down the road," he said. Port Commissioner Kristy Buck said the port would have to spend $13,600 to make the fairgrounds safe for an event. "It's bad money after bad," she said. County Commissioner Tim Shel- don said the community would have to unite in favor of the fairgrounds to get the FAA to change its posi- tion. "If it's a one-year solution or a three-year solution, it's got to be something everyone agrees on," he said. "We all have to be singing from the same song or it's not going any- where." Skookum Rotary Foundation Com- mittee member Patti Case said the group will continue working on plans for a new event center. "We'd rather do this right than do this quickly," she said. Dobson said the port could poten- tially use its unused runway as a temporary location for events such as OysterFest in coming years. -- Journal photo by Gordon Weeks All the water for the city of Shelton's systems comes from wells near Shelton Springs. This city water structure sits at the intersection of Northcliff Road and 13th Street, Water: Chamber says sewer plan will affect business continued from page A-1 During the public hearing at Monday's commission meeting, Steve Andrewski -- a member of the Shelton Mason County Chamber of Commerce board of directors -- read aloud a letter to the commission signed by Heidi McCutcheon, the cham- beFs executive director. In the statement, the chamber reiterated that its favors the $4.2 million plan, which "represents a fis- cally responsible path for infrastructure maintenance and improvements." The chamber states it believes the $9 million plan "will negatively affect the potential economic progress in Shelton, and will send a message to future inves- tors that city policy makers do not rec- ognize the fragile state of the economy." In its statement, the chamber notes that city staff members haven't present- ed proposed rates for non-residential wa- ter users such as businesses. The city's comprehensive plan that predicts an increase of 10,700 people in the Shelton Urban Growth Area by 2025 is "outdated and flawed," the organization states. Furthermore, the chamber refutes statements by city staff that it needs to finance the bigger plan now because low interests won't be available later. "First, we do not believe the state will simply leave cities and counties to fend for themselves," the chamber states. '%Vhile the Public Works Assistance Ac- count is always in danger of being swept in bad budget years, we are aware of no precedentor proof for the argument that it will simply disappear as a low interest rate." But Olsen said that when it comes to getting an interest rate, "One percent is as good a deal as we'll find." Commissioner Moore agreed. "The 1 percent guaranteed loan is huge," she said. Mayor Cronce reiterated that he con- siders the $4.2 million option the "pru- dent" plan. The city recently raised sew- er rates, and "I take that with me every night to bed with me," he said. "People are getting tired of paying more money ... At some point, we've got to stop borrowing more money," Cronce said. During the public hearing, several residents urged the commission to by- pass the bigger plan. "I'm troubled," said resident Kathy McDowell. 'qNe as a city cannot afford to borrow $7 million." Residents are struggling to pay their utility bills, including herself, McDow- ell said. McDowell, who narrowly lost a commission race to Moore last fall, urged the city to chose the $4.2 million plan. The #1 Source This newspaper has been the leading source of Local Political news and information for more than a century. If you're a candidate for office you should advertise here. For the most credible and most cost effective way to get your message out to the voters, call us today! thojournal (360) 426-4412 Conquer pain, restore function, and return t yur favrite activities That's the goal at MGH Shelton Orthopedics, where board-certified and board eligible orthopedic surgeons are committed to quality care and positive outcomes: With a full range of orthopedic specialties, including sports medicine and joint restoration and replacement, Shelton Orthopedics works toward finding a solution that will get you moving again. To make an appointment at MGH Shelton Orthopedics call (360) 427-0663.  Mason General Hospital Shelton Orthopedics (360} 427-0663 939 Mountain View Dr, Ste. 130 Shelton, WA 98584 www.MasonGeneral.com i