Opinion

Sounds like the port is shortening Bozeman's leash

When Cary Bozeman was appointed CEO of the Port of Bremerton last June, he arrived to great fanfare and made a lot of sweeping promises about expanding the airport, making the Bremerton Marina profitable, finding tenants for the South Kitsap Industrial Area (SKIA) and generally getting the port out of the doldrums.

And for those of us who’ve been hard on the port in recent years, it all sounded pretty good.

Problem is, while we were busy getting caught up in the rhetoric, we apparently forgot who’s actually running the show over there.

But the port commissioners haven’t forgotten, and it seems as though Bozeman is getting a reminder himself these days.

Most prominently, Commissioner Larry Stokes, who represents South Kitsap on the board, went off last week at the port’s budget session on what he termed the “fluff” being proposed.

In particular, he singled out the $135,000 soccer field Bozeman suggested building at SKIA as an enticement to fitness-conscious entrepreneurs who might be looking to relocate their business to the port-owned industrial park.

Bozeman, coincidentally or not, decided this week to drop the soccer field plan for the time being.

Meanwhile, both Lynn Horton and Roger Zabinski, candidates for the seat on the port’s board of commissioners being vacated by Cheryl Kincer, told attendees at a public forum last week that Bozeman currently wields too much power.

They were especially concerned that as CEO he has the authority to spend up to $50,000 without the consent of the commissioners.

“In meeting with him, (Bozeman conveyed) that he wants to be the boss and only have the board involved at budget time,” Zabinski said. “He needs to be reined in, and a lot of changes made.”

From the sound of things, that’s already happening.

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