Commissioner Shortt retires
After eight years on the Port Commission, Brian Shortt will retire his seat June 30. Shortt says Port projects he’s most proud of working on are bridge replacement, the brownfield cleanup and industrial site creation at Lower Mill, waterfront developments, youth sailing, upgrades to Nichols Basin as a multi-use area, and airport improvements.
“The Port of Hood River staff is a respected team of professionals, and the Commission is diverse in community perspectives with a forward-looking agenda that is both responsible and challenging,” Shortt shares. “I appreciated the opportunity to participate.”
Brian and his wife Karen have owned and operated Shortt Supply in Hood River for the past 20 years, and that business will continue to occupy his time. He also plans to “be quiet for awhile,” visit a dispersed family, and pull out his “seriously neglected” flyfishing gear.
BreezeBy Terms update
The Port is modifying its automatic account balance replenishment terms for BreezeBy that should result to fewer charges to some customers’ bank cards. The new terms are prompted by significant increases in credit card fees, and the change should primarily affect frequent users of the Hood River Interstate Bridge. The main alteration to the terms affects BreezeBy automatic account replenishment to one charge per month based on an average of the past three-months usage. Emails will be sent to customers to inform them that thresholds have been changed. To opt-out of replenishment updates or reduce an account threshold, users can call the Port office at: 541-386-1645.
Airport construction project underway
The Ken Jernstedt Airfield’s North Landside development has commenced. The first project is funded with a $2.3 million grant from ODOT’s Connect 6 program, with the Port and Hood River County paying a portion of the required match. Site work includes: installation of water, gas, storm and sewer, grading for building pad sites, plus paving parking lots and a portion of a new north ramp. The Port will be mitigating one acre of wetlands for this project. The permit application is in the public comment period for US Army Corps of Engineers. The wetland permit application for Department of State Lands has been submitted and is expected to go to public comment in May. Century West Engineering is the project engineer for the Port.
Gorge-ous Night events
The OneGorge advocacy group hosted two legislative receptions in Oregon and Washington capitals. The fourth annual “Gorge-ous Night” events, held March 6 in Salem and March 19 in Olympia, showcased the Gorge economy, including high-tech, agricultural, aviation, forestry and outdoor recreation industries. “Our state representatives work very hard to advocate for Gorge priorities with their colleagues in the legislatures,” said Port Communications Manager Genevieve Scholl. “We bring the Gorge to the capitals and they make sure we get lots of attention and a chance to really raise awareness of our community’s needs.” OneGorge is an informally organized network of private businesses, public agencies, and non-profit organizations that work together to increase awareness about the region and facilitate advocacy efforts. For more information, visit onegorge.org.