Marquee repair discussion tabled

The Bay Street marquee may be standing upright now, but according to an engineering analysis performed on the structure, wind, water, an earthquake, or even time could bring it crashing down.

In a presentation to the Port Orchard City Council on Monday, CTS Engineering, which performed the two-day marquee structural evaluation, recommended $41,000 worth of immediate repairs to the structure, including removal of the pickets, repairs to the gutter, replacement of brackets and sections of the structure suffering from splits and dry rot and the replacement of bolts too large to fit their designated holes in the shriveling wood.

According to the report, the structure could start to come apart any day — or last three to four years if nothing is done.

In addition to immediate repairs, the report recommended $26,000 in near-term repairs, $10,000 in long term repairs and up to $4,000 in yearly maintenance, with an $8,000 aesthetic renovation option.

In light of a possible change of hands for many downtown properties and the possibility for the destruction for the buildings and sections of the aging structure, Councilman John Clauson, whose brother Rich is the broker attempting to buy many of the Bay Street properties for a group of Puget Sound investors, made a motion to table the issue of directing staff to come up with a plan for 30 days.

Councilman Todd Cramer asked Clauson to recuse himself from the vote due to a perceived conflict of interest.

“I think he should recuse himself,” Cramer said. “He’s too close.”

Clauson replied that he had no financial interest and little detail about his brother’s development plans.

“I simply know that he is a real estate broker trying to assemble some properties downtown for a group of investors,” Clauson said, although he didn’t vote in order to respect Cramer’s wishes.

Clauson motioned to table two other business items over the course of the meeting, the last visually upsetting Councilwoman Rita DiIenno.

Clauson made motions to table the decision of who on the council will join Bremerton City Councilmembers on a joint planning committee, and also DiIenno’s objection to Councilman Bob Geiger’s placement of political signs on the city’s property.

Each motion passed.

DiIenno said Clauson was trying to stifle open discussion. When a councilmember moves to table an issue, discussion ends and a vote is taken to determine whether or not to move the issue to the bottom of the agenda for reintroduction by the councilmember at any time in the future.

“Tabling is never to be used to shut off conversation,” DiIenno said. “We’re probably going to bring that up at the next meeting.”

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