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Former West Sound UD commissioner remembered

A former commissioner for West Sound Utility District has died.

William “Bill” Huntington, 76, died June 13 at his Port Orchard home.

Huntington was the commissioner for the Annapolis Water District from January 1996 to December 2011 and served on the Karsher Creek Sewer District No. 1 from January 1998 to January 2007.

Annapolis Water District and the Karsher Creek Sewer District merged in 2008 to form the West Sound Utility District. Huntington retired as commissioner in December 2011.

Position 2 Commissioner James “Jim” Hart said that Huntington was instrumental in the utility district.

In 1993, Huntington defeated Hart by five votes for commissioner for the Kitsap County Sewer District No. 1 and two years later, Hart rejoined the board.

Hart said Huntington was elected to the Annapolis Water District board four years later. Hart followed Huntington and he was elected to the board two years later.

“We started looking at the sewer side because we were flooding into homes and into waterways,” Hart recalled. “We had all kinds of problem going and we had to start spending money.”

In a six-year period, the district had one pump station that overflowed 35 times. The district began fixing the system in 1998.

“Bill was instrumental in raising the rates and fixing the system,” Hart said.

After that, the board made a decision to raise rates and repair problems plaguing the system.

“For years, no one wanted to fix things,” he said. “No one wanted to raise rates and wanted to wait and see if the government would come along to give us a grant to fix things.”

Hart said when Huntington finally got on the board, he was willing to fix things.

“We bought equipment to maintain the lines, then we looked at the whole system to see where the problems were coming from,” he said.

He said with Huntington on the board, the district began to hire people who were more knowledgable and the district began replacing lines which were installed during World War II along the east portion of Port Orchard.

“What Bill did more than anything, was to help put the system into better shape,” Hart said. “He looked at ways to repair the systems.”

Hart said the district doesn’t overflow as much as in the past.

“Bill was the one who took a look at what the district needed and really did an excellent job,” he said. “We put the two districts together it saved a lot of money. He just was a real pleasure to work with.”

Huntington was born in Sequim and graduated from Sequim High School in 1954. He graduated from Washington State University with a degree in communication.

After graduation, Huntington worked as a floor director with KING-TV in Seattle and also played Uncle Torvald on the Stan Borenson Show.

He married Mary Ann Connolly in 1961.

Huntington worked for the Tacoma News Tribune for 10 years before the couple decided to open the Tijuana Jail Restaurants. Years later, the couple sold the businesses and Huntington became a realtor for Spot Realty.

He later became the first director of the Kitsap Sun Pavilion and worked there for several years. Huntington retired from the Puget Sound Economic District in Seattle.

“He was good natured and a pleasure to be around,” Hart said. “He was a positive person and easy to laugh with. He was really a super person.”

He is survived by his wife, Mary; two daughters, Christy Brady and Debby (Tim) Alexander; and three grandchildren.

Funeral services for Huntington were held June 20 at Rill Chapel’s Life Tribute Center in Port Orchard.

 

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