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Port deals with messy rec pier

"Illegal fishing and littering have plagued the Clinton Recreational Pier, and now the Port of South Whidbey commissioners are making a concerted effort to do something about it.The pier and its adjacent floating dock are located on the north side of the Clinton ferry dock. A platform above the water, reached by a walkway, allows fishing and crabbing, but those activities are banned on the float.The pier, built in the 1980s, has often been a headache for the port commissioners because of complaints about litter. At Wednesday's regular monthly meeting, it was announced that garbage pick-up will be increased from one can a week to two cans twice a week.In addition, a no crabbing sign will likely be added to the no fishing sign on the floating dock, because people caught crabbing claim that's not fishing, according to Art Pratt, who does some maintenance work there for the port. Another problem is that the enclosed waiting area on the facility, which was built for passenger-only ferry commuters who never materialized, is being used as a restroom. Pratt referred to it as the latrine house in his comments Wednesday. There has been talk at port meetings about opening it up more so it's less private, but no work has been ordered.The facility will see its most activity ever beginning in late November when Washington State Ferries will take it over as a launching place for its passenger-only ferry. That temporary ferry will operate during non-commuter daytime hours while the Mukilteo car ferry dock is closed for construction work, from Nov. 27 until sometime in February.Later, when the Clinton ferry dock is upgraded, the port's recreational pier will be removed by State Ferries and later replaced. During that time the port commissioners are hoping for some improvements to their pier. "

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