Apr 272018

11:30pm Thursday: News Release from Port of Newport General Manager Doug Parsons


Patricia Patrick-Joling
Resigns from Newport Port Commission

On April 25th Patricia Patrick-Joling, President of the Board for the Port of Newport, resigned her position as a Commissioner effective May 1st. Ms. Patrick-Joling holds Commissioner Position #5 which expires 30 June 2019, and has served in that position since July 2015.

Once the Port’s Board of Commissioners declares the position vacant, the Port will issue a press release seeking eligible candidates for the vacant position. That press release will provide interested persons with details on eligibility requirements; submitting signed Letters of Interest and completed Candidate Questionnaires; the submittal deadline; Candidate interview date(s); the anticipated selection date, etc. These details will also be posted on the Port’s website (www.portofnewport.com) at that time.

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On Thursday, April 26th, Port Commissioner Jeff Lackey, Vice President of the Commission, stepped down from his position of Vice President effective immediately. However, he will remain a regular port commissioner. Lackey holds Commissioner Position #4 which expires 30 June 2021, and has served in that position since July 2017.

End Port News Release

There was no explanation or any details about Patricia Patrick-Joling’s resignation or in Commissioner Jeff Lackey’s self-removal as Commission Vice-President. Ms. Patrick-Joling was not immediately available for comment.

However, News Lincoln County can report that this week’s port commission meeting saw a large crowd of commercial and private fishermen lambasting the commission for what they described as an ineffective agency and daring the commission to raise moorage rates and rates for use of heavy equipment to load and offload fishing vessels. Comments were often made as to the central, if not pivotal role, that commercial fishing contributes to the port’s income and that if rates are raised to the extent recommended by port staff, they will pick up and move.

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The port has struggled for the past few years to complete the work of former Port Manager Don Mann who initially led the effort to create the International Terminal on the north bank of Yaquina Bay – got it built but soon-after, Mann resigned.

The port then tried to sign up an operator company that could provide cargo cranes and other heavy equipment to make the new facility operational along with a proposal to run the terminal by a company that represents a Chinese shipping company. The financial details that came in with that bid did not set well with successor Port Manager Kevin Greenwood and others who claimed the deal wouldn’t pencil out. After a time, Greenwood separated from the port and another new port manager took over – Doug Parsons – who has a stellar resume, clearly within the higher echelons of big business. Parsons has been analyzing the port’s financials and, as a result, recommended substantial user rate increases for fishermen and other users of port facilities. That recommendation was received among a number of fishermen as a non-starter. Some fishermen suggested that they might consider a 3% across the board fee and user rate schedule. The commission and Parsons didn’t comment on the offer.

Stay tuned.

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