America, Mayor Bozeman; Mayor Bozeman, America

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Bremerton Mayor Cary Bozeman made an appearance on the NBC News last night, giving America a face for the name, BREMERTON, the jewel of the Olympic Peninsula.

(Aberdeen? Please. Sequim? Bring a book. Port Angeles? Port Wha? Port Townsend? Not unless you like drum circles.)

Click here to go to the Kitsap Caucus and watch the segment.

The segment was about the lagging condo market and how a flagging real estate market could hinder the ability of up-and-coming cities to inject some life into their downtowns. Mentioned often was the surplus of luxury units on the waterfront.

Also featured was the elusive Mark Goldberg, the developer of The 400 who has plans to keep building condos on the waterfront and who has been neglecting to return calls from Kitsap Sun reporters. Goldberg apparently couldn’t pass on the chance to get on national television.

17 thoughts on “America, Mayor Bozeman; Mayor Bozeman, America

  1. Olympic Peninsula?! That’s funny I thought we lived on the Island of Kitsap. Does this mean my property taxes will go up to help pay for private development? Oops! too late they already did.

  2. If The Sun has any $ for investigative reporting an easy check of Mr. Goldberg’s “investment” properties around town will give you a good look at what can kindly be called blighted properties. If he’s hard up for cash maybe we could have a yard sale to raise the cash for 20 gal of white paint to clean up the street sides at least. You will see the same beauty of a “investor” on Pitt & Scott Ave north of 11th, I guess these investors in Bremerton don’t care how disgusting their properties are. These are the people that City politicians and some staff refer to as “stakeholders”.

  3. It will probably come as a surprise to Mayor Bozeman, but Bremerton is not on the Olympic Penninsula. Bremerton is on the Great Penninsula, more recently called the Kitsap Penninsula. It is no wonder that such a clueless person stuck the taxpayers with the bill for millions of dollars in worthless condos.

  4. Binion here:

    Far be it from me to discourage uninformed attacks on politicians, or the press, however, you are really off the mark Cynic, if that is your real name.

    1-Bozeman didn’t say Bremerton is on the OP, I did.

    2-The Harborside Condos were built by Kitsap Housing Authority, The 400 was private development. The city (i.e. Bozeman + City Council) pledged to pay back up to $2 million if the authority, and others, default.

    3-Bremerton is on the Kitsap Peninsula, and the Kitsap Peninsula is on the Olympic Peninsula. To deny that Bremerton is an OP town sounds to me like Brits who cannot accept they are part of Europe. Or Port Townsend asserting it is on the Quimper Peninsula, not the OP. As the Wiki entry states, “The Kitsap Peninsula is an arm of land that is part of the larger Olympic Peninsula.”

  5. Beg to differ with you Mr. Binion, but when did Wiki become a reliable source for anything? As a newspaper man you should know that an information source that cites no reference or source (Kitsap Peninsula From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    This article does not cite any references or sources. (November 2006))
    is really no source at all. My 46 years here tell me that most everyone I talk to knows that The Kitsap Peninsula has always been regarded as separate from the Olympic Peninsula in just about every way imaginable. I can’t see how a Wiki post is going to change that perception.

  6. Please, differ away.

    But when doubting the reliability of Wiki, keep in mind it considers the KP as a separate “region” than the OP. If anything, that supports your point and diminishes mine.

  7. If Mr. Goldberg’s properties, and I am assuming you know that he owns those pieces, cause I don’t, are a source of issues, you might be able to reach him at, I believe, M.S. Cavoad, in Seattle.
    I hope that will help.

  8. Thanks for the reply. Love the blog since the day I found it. Love living in Kitsap, and love talking about it.

  9. Mr. Binion: It will probably come as a surprise to you, but the Kitsap Housing Authority is taxpayer funded, and when the condos don’t sell, the taxpayers will have to foot the bill. Regardless of the financing source, Mayor Bozeman was the primary proponent of this boondoggle. Wikopedia is not an authorative source on geography.

  10. Let’s talk condos….
    One could blame the failing real estate market entirely but I think it is much more. Bremerton missed the mark with its high rise condo development in a town void of a business and retail support structure surrounding it. High rise condo development follows business development which Mayor Bozeman should have understood. Bellevue is a fine example of that.

    Furthermore, as Mayor Bozeman continues his effort to revitalize Bremerton; Bremerton has passed an ordinance exempting businesses within the Port Authority owned area of SKIA from the B & O tax – so the money needs to come from somewhere. My bet is the homeowners within the Port Authority’s control will be the ones tapped by taxing us for the SKIA once it is annexted to Bremerton. The question is: Do you want Busineses to prosper within SKIA development using your tax dollars to compensate for the B&O tax shortfall designed by the Bremerton Ordinance? You think the condos cost the tax payers, just wait until the Port Authority decides it wants to fund the infrastructure for SKIA to attract businesses.

  11. Binion here:

    Thanks for all the comments. Sorry I don’t get back often. Commenting cuts into the time I have to gather more news and thus provide the Bremerton Beat with fresh content. If you would like to contact me directly, you can e-mail me at andrew.binion@kitsapsun.com. It’s easier for me to respond to e-mail. Oh, and also, if you have written something you would like to share, about a Bremerton issue (very important) and don’t want to see it languish as a blog comment, e-mail me directly and if I can, I’ll try to post it on its own. With a little Binion commentary, of course.

    Cynic: I’m not surprised. But I enjoy your comments, and others do to. It’s hard to achieve “playful” on a blog. If I come off as snarky, I apologize. Keep them coming.

    Linda: I have a few questions.

    Here goes:

    1 – Must housing development come after business development all the time? What about bedroom communities, suburbs, that kind of thing?

    2 – The city is phasing out the B&O tax across the board. Port property in SKIA (only) will get the exemption *if* the property gets annexed. Assuming it’s annexed, are you predicting that private dollars won’t in fact develop the roads and wiring?

    Take care everybody. It’s late. I’m going home.

  12. Businesses and developers rarely if ever provide the amount of funding needed to support the infrastructure needs they create. Take a look at what is happening right now in the Illahee area regarding a large development and the sewer system. There is a project in place to put a large development in the area above Illahee. This information comes from a project still in the works so it may have changed since I last talked about it. My parents, raised five kids on one income. My dad was a hard working carpenter. They live on Social Security, unsupplemented, and are proud of the fact that they still manage to put away a little something each month for special things they want. They ask for no help. and even refuse it when we try. The developer of this new plat is required to provide sewer for the houses. My parents have been told that if the project goes through, they will be required to abandon a perfectly working septic tank and join the sewer system. It will cost them initially $2000.00 to help pay for the lines being run, and then a monthly fee to be on the system. This fee is assessed for each house in the Illahee area to assist the developer in completing his project.
    If there was no development in the works, the sewer would not be an issue. There is in addition no mention of the increased traffic on small residential streets etc. that results from 200 homes being added overnight.
    However, So yes, the developer usually has an infrastructure fee attached to his permits, but he writes those into the price of the houses he sells. Tax payers also end up shouldering a huge portion of these needs, and that money comes out of our pockets.

  13. Few products sell themselves, even condos. Products depend upon an accurate set of criteria and a weighted set of variables to accurately assess what the market is buying. One must be sure that the product and market are right for one another and consumer demand is in alignment with the product offering. I’m assuming that the Bremerton development group researched and understood both qualitative research and quantitative research that launched the condo development. This included, the analysis of the demographic data – income ranges, ages, population growth, empty nesters or household status etc. along with where condo buyers go – whether it is restaurants, pharmacy and grocery stores for staples such as milk, bread, and prepared foods including entrees and meat fish and produce. High-rise condo projects in urban centers are also tied to proximity to work; security; no home maintenance; along with attractive views. So I’m assuming a market profile and its potential were flawed for Bremerton. Keep in mind; the condos in the Bellevue area are still selling.

    From my perspective the single most significant and over arching criteria for successful condo development is “Growth.” Successful downtown condo development is that it is linked to business (retail, commercial and office) growth as well as the cost of the development itself. After reading the headlines in today’s Kitsap Sun I believe the “growth data” must not have been weighted appropriately in the overall analysis.

  14. As it happens, some 20 years ago or so, Backcountry Horseman of Washington began a chapter here in Kitsap County. They named themselves the Olympic Peninsula Backcountry Horseman chapter…or something to that effect.

    Horse people are usually right.

    Jim Murphy was the chapter’s first president (PO/SK) and had looked up the accuracy of the term, that Kitsap County was within the Olympic Peninsula scope.

    It must be true…Backcountry Horseman don’t have time to fudge on a name…they’re working too hard clearing trails to take the time to redo an incorrect name.
    …my opinion… Sharon O’Hara

  15. As it happens, some 20 years ago or so, Backcountry Horseman of Washington began a chapter here in Kitsap County. They named themselves the Olympic Peninsula Backcountry Horseman chapter…or something to that effect.

    Horse people are usually right.

    Jim Murphy was the chapter’s first president (PO/SK) and had looked up the accuracy of the term, that Kitsap County was within the Olympic Peninsula scope.

    It must be true…Backcountry Horseman don’t have time to fudge on a name…they’re working too hard clearing trails to take the time to redo an incorrect name.

    Speaking to the condo issue…hindsight is always the correct sight.

    If growth and predictability were accurately read and could be predicted, Westsound wouldn’t be in the pickle it is, builders wouldn’t have overreached buying property and building. People would not have grabbed the golden ring expecting to make a fortune by buying and selling higher.

    I know of at least one property I looked at but thought it was overpriced. Someone else bought it, put it back on the market perhaps a year later at a higher price. It sold and the last time I saw it was on the market and the price raised another couple hundred thousand.

    Whatever goes up has to come down. That is a rule it seems and no one has a glass ball for ‘when’…
    .my opinion… Sharon O’Hara

  16. In the spirit of the idea that reasonable people (even in the same field or with similar levels of expertise) are capable of differing on such matters, I would disagree with the notion (Linda?) that housing usually only follows non-residential development. In my many years as a land-use attorney, it’s typically been the other way around and, to the extent that downtown housing or mixed-use developments can stimulate business interest, I believe the Mayor and city planners have been “spot on” with their efforts. It is truly hard to fathom the short-sightedness of those who seem to have smugly determined that the condos were a fiasco or poorly planned. Last time I looked, many units have sold, they’re beautiful and beautifully situated, and a few years from now when the economy (and real estate) cycles back up, those amongst are city leaders who conceived them and those who purchased them will be looking like the smart ones.

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