The Port of South Whidbey commissioners adopted a 2013 budget Tuesday with considerably less revenue than was received this year.
There’s no mystery to the change. Earlier this year the port sold $850,000 in bonds to help fund the Langley Marina expansion project. In future years that money will appear on the expenditure side, rather than revenue.
Work started this week on a small portion of the marina project — removing old pilings along the public boat ramp and installing new ones, along with floats.
The commissioners adopted the smaller of two budget options.
The budget option dropped included a hoped-for grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to buy two boats, one for the sheriff’s office and one for South Whidbey Fire/EMS.
“The FEMA grant looks a little shaky,” Port President Curt Gordon said Thursday. He said it’s still a possibility, but the commissioners weren’t confident enough to include the $1.06 million FEMA grant in next year’s budget.
The budget adopted totals $2,110,159 in receipts. Local property taxes were raised by the legal limit of 1 percent, which will bring in $525,000 at a rate less than 10 cents per thousand of assessed value. A couple of other major local money-makers include $138,040 in revenue from Langley Marina for moorage and $37,550 from parking fees from the Humphrey Road lot above the Clinton ferry dock.
Outside revenue is highlighted by several grants from various agencies to help fund the Langley Marina project, the largest being $1.2 million from Island County. Another grant for design work at Possession Beach Park totals $74,000.
The final anticipated spending total of $2.64 million is $532,000 more than the port will bring in, but Gordon said that was expected with major work on the Langley Marina scheduled to begin next year. The port will start the year with an estimated $1.12 million in cash.
The port’s various parks and properties all come with a cost. Costs at the Humphrey Road lot are pegged at $23,260; Possession Point Park, $42,852; Clinton facilities, including the park and pier, $20,600; and Bush Point facilities, $18,736.
The port’s administration costs for 2013 are pegged at $391,809. The largest costs are for salaries: $45,760 to pay the clerk, $66,503 for the operations manager and $63,310 for the finance manager, plus benefits.
The port expects to spend $30,000 on comprehensive plan work next year. For travel, $1,000 is set aside for the three commissioners and $14,000 for the staff. The commissioners’ per diem pay for attending meetings will total $10,500.