PLIC Board on negotiations and PLIC meeting tonight

This morning, the PLIC Board sent out an email to their members about the PLIC monthy meeting tonight, May  11, 2011.  Their email (content also posted on www.plicferry.org) includes the Board’s current understanding about where the Gooseberry Pt negotiations are (or are not) and what the Board thinks are the next steps.

To give the PLIC Board’s views as much visibility as possible, the text that they just added to their website is repeated below. The PLIC Board has invited the community to discuss these issues further at tonight’s meeting.

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Vital community mtg tonight…Lease under consideration…Task Force wants input…Important dates looming

URGENT! PLIC all-community meeting to examine impasse, deadline

Tonight’s  monthly PLIC open meeting for the community takes on added significance because we find ourselves in limbo heading into the weekend of deadline for shutdown of the ferry. No lease. No deadline extension. The meeting, open to everyone regardless of membership status and welcoming to all viewpoints, will center on two issues:

1. Community political action: appealing to Whatcom County officials to push for a lease agreement, and to keep the ferry running after Sunday (5/15) regardless of the status of lease negotiations.

2. Discussion of contingency plans by island residents starting May 16 if no agreement is in place.

The meeting starts at 6:30 in The Grange.

Negotiations produced a possibility for Lummi Island ferry lease, Council meeting to discuss

A three-hour session Monday (5/9) between Whatcom County and Lummi Nation Business Council negotiating teams produced a proposal for each side to take to respective whole bodies of governing councils. The County Council announced Monday morning that it would hold an executive session (closed to public) Tuesday (5/10) for a briefing and for positing on the proposal.

There were no indications after that session, or after Council’s regular meeting that followed, of any progress toward a solution. Lummi Island remained without a lease deal for ferry service, and without an extension of the deadline for running the Whatcom Chief to Gooseberry Point.

County Executive Pete Kremen called PLIC late Monday night and recapped the day’s events, summarizing that it “…wasn’t bad news, it’s still alive….and it wasn’t overly good news.” He said the negotiating team — which includes three members of Council (Sam Crawford, Bill Knutzen, and Ken Mann) along with Kremen, attorney Dan Gibson, and Dir of Public Works Frank Abart — would outline the proposal and take a reading on whether it would have support. A minimum of 4 votes is required for any proposal to become law.

Kremen said another session with LIBC was “tentatively” set for Friday the 13th. He said he would notify LIBC’s attorney Wednesday morning (5/11) about “…where County Council wants to go with the negotiations…a myriad things can still happen.”

URGENT! Mark your calendars

Wednesday, May 11 – PLIC Community Meeting, 6:30 pm, The Grange

Friday, May 13 – Tentatively-scheduled negotiation session for ferry lease (time & place unannounced)

Sunday, May 15 – LIBC deadline for the County to cease ferry operations to Gooseberry Point

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