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Port planning to create SEED council

The Port of Bremerton has decided to create a council of local business and community leaders to promote both the port’s Sustainable Energy and Economic Development (SEED) Project, and future clean technology industry development in the region.

“The Kitsap SEED Project has matured beyond the conceptual stage to a point where it is appropriate to create a community-wide advisory committee — the Kitsap SEED Community Partner Council (SCPC) — committed to see that the community is best positioned to capture the emerging clean technology industry cluster,” states the resolution recently passed by the port’s board of commissioners.

Before the resolution was passed unanimously, Port Commissioner Bill Mahan asked the staff to compile a list of potential candidates the board could review before appointing members to the council.

According to the resolution, potential members will include a Port of Bremerton commissioner and other elected officials, along with representatives from higher education, land development, the Kitsap Economic Development Council, the U.S. Navy and local tribes.

“It would be the function of the SCPC to meet regularly for the purpose and goal of (promoting) Kitsap County as a Pacific Northwest leader in the clean technology industry cluster with an initial focus of bringing to reality the vision of the Kitsap SEED Project at the Port’s Olympic View Business Park,” the resolution states.

Also at a recent meeting, hired consultant Tim Botkin of Sustainable Synergy gave the board an update on the SEED project, a 72-acre site in the South Kitsap Industrial Area (SKIA) that will embrace sustainable energy and building technology.

“The plan is going in a lot of directions and there are a lot of pieces that are becoming more clear,” Botkin said, explaining that both an ethanol product company and a fuel-cell manufacturer had recently expressed interest in the campus.

Another development Botkin announced was that the project had received an $800,000 capital budget allocation from the state Legislature.

“It is not only an incredible boost financially, but it puts us on the map,” he said, explaining that the funds were a “coup” for the project not just money-wise, but credibility-wise as well.

Botkin also reminded the board that his one-year consulting contract was up next month, and he hoped it would be renewed.

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