Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Port?
A Port in the State of Washington is classified as a special purpose district whose function is to spur economic activity in a community. Ports are their own government entities - not part of city or county governments.
How is a port district created?
A Port is created by a majority vote of the people within the proposed port district. The Port of Ridgefield was organized in this manner in 1940 to ensure public ownership of our waterfront and promote economic development.
How is the Port of Ridgefield governed?
The Port of Ridgefield is governed by a three-member Port commission. They are elected by a vote of the people and serve a six-year term. The Port is administered by an Executive Director who is appointed by the Board of Commissioners.
Does the City of Ridgefield have administrative control over the Port or vice-versa?
The City of Ridgefield and The Port of Ridgefield are separate government entities. Although these entities do work closely together and in cooperation on many projects, they are separate bodies, governed by separate elected officials and run by separate administrations.
Does the Port collect taxes?
Yes, the Port collects a property tax levy on land within the Port District. The 2008 property tax rate for the Port is $.16 per $1000 of assessed value, or $16 for property valued at $100,000. In 2007 the Port collected $369,922, from this tax.
What makes up the Port's revenue budget?
About 20 percent of the Port's revenue comes through local property taxes. The rest of the budget is primarily comprised of state and federal money to operate the environmental cleanup at the Lake River Industrial Site. The Port also earns and invests dollars through its real estate and economic development activities. Tax revenue is never used to fund operations at the Port, all tax dollars are invested in Port projects.
How does the average citizen benefit from the Port of Ridgefield?
The Port creates jobs and brings businesses to the greater Ridgefield area that in turn creates a larger, more diversified tax base. Generally speaking, having more business and industry in an area diversifies the overall tax-base, and means lower personal property tax rates for individual homeowners. Additionally, the Port provides recreational opportunities by operating and maintaining the boat and kayak launches. The Port also provides valuable leadership on local issues such as transportation, the environment and community growth.
When are Commission Meetings?
The Port holds regularly scheduled open public meetings on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday of each month at 3 PM. Meetings are held at the Port Administration offices located at 111 West Division Street in downtown Ridgefield. The public is welcomed and encouraged to attend. See page under Public Meetings for more schedules, agendas and meeting minutes.
How do I arrange for a tour of the Port facilities?
To schedule a tour contact the Marketing & Communications Manager at (360) 887-3873 or email email@example.com.