Tag Archives: Port Orchard

Speaking of Paint Jobs

I noticed, and other staff members commented, that a  long-standing business in Gorst, Toys Topless, has its windows taped and sealed and it appears a layer of white primer has been applied. In its easily two decades in business, the entertainment establishment has sported an array of interesting color schemes. Most recently, if memory serves (I only drive by there twice each work day) the building was painted a vivid lime green. Obviously Gorst is way too far from downtown Port Orchard to be infected with Paint the Town fever. But after all, summer is painting season, and its about time for Toys to get a make-over.

Here’s some evidence as to how long Toys has been operating. My oldest son, who is turning 25, started to read when he was about 5 or 6. For many years, he recently told me, he thought Toys Topless was an actual toy store, and he wondered why we never stopped there.

Speaking of Gorst, Gardener and I were talking about town mottos (since the Port Orchard City Council will hear on Tuesday about the PO Chamber’s branding campaign). I suggested Bremerton’s should be, “Gateway to Gorst.” Gardner suggested that honor should go to Port Orchard. And back and forth it went.

Which reminds me, Kitsap Sun blogger Travis Baker wrote about the Gorst Quarry earlier this month, where some extensive excavation is taking place. According to Baker, the owner first joked that it was “the new eight-lane highway between Gorst and Bremerton, plus a marina out in front.”Then he said there is still considerable material worth excavating. Also they are landscaping in order to do some hysroseeding, which, I guess, will make the quarry look nicer.

I am also reminded of the graffiti on the railroad tressle, which, until recently said, “Love is a disease. Runs before it kills you.” Ah, those ever upbeat Gorstians. I had a hard time reading what the new graffiti, scrawled over the old message says. I will try to pay better attention on my commute tomorrow.

Gorstians unite, who is there to defend your honor? Do you consider yourselves part of Bremerton (which you technically are), or Port Orchard/South Kitsap?

Delilah’s Paint the Town: A Reality Check

As a journalist, it’s my job to ask questions, to look at both sides of an issue. Take for example the upcoming “Paint the Town” event planned for Aug. 2 by dynamic radio personality Delilah Rene Luke and a cadre of enthusiastic volunteers.

What but good could possibly come out of a day-long painting party aimed at giving Port Orchard an extreme makeover? The idea is to spiffy up the town’s image before Cedar Cove Days (Aug. 26-30), a long-planned tribute to best-selling author Debbie Macomber, Delilah’s South Kitsap neighbor and good friend. How could anyone question such a prospect, especially considering Delilah is footing the bill for much of the paint and other materials?

How indeed? Yet I know I’m not the first person to ask, “They’re going to do what, by when?”

This week, I spoke to Delilah and co-organizer/ design coordinator Heather Cole, a local business owner, about details like liability, quality control and environmental concerns, issues raised last week at a meeting of the Port Orchard Bay Street Merchant’s Association. I guess you could say I was playing the role of Devil’s advocate (it’s on my job description), because, as they say, the Devil’s in the details. Here’s what I found out:

Liability: As part of her donation to the town, Delilah is purchasing short-term liability insurance to cover painting sub-contractors, also donating their services, and volunteers, should someone, God forbid, fall off a ladder or the like. During the event, children will not be allowed to wander around work areas. There will by children’s activities — including a mural painting party hosted by Delilah in a vacant lot — in designated areas of the town.

Quality Control: The two blocks of Bay Street targeted for beautification will be divided into sections, each overseen by a team of professional painting contractors. Any work that is deemed substandard will be repainted by the pros, Cole said.

Environmental Concerns: Buildings will be pretested for lead-based paint. Any that do have lead will simply be painted over rather than pressure-washed in advance.

Effect on Businesses: The event, which will require closing two blocks of Bay Street, was originally set for a Saturday, but a hue and cry from merchants prompted organizers to switch to Sunday. For some, including Morningside Bread Co., however, Sunday is one of the busiest days of the week. Owner Amanda Rudd said the enthusiasm being generated by the event is “wonderful of course,” but she’s worried about the impact on her bottom line. Even a large pre-order of baked goods Delilah will distribute to volunteers is unlikely to offset the loss of regular business, Rudd said. Rudd also worries that the job will actually take longer than one day.

Cole said the Paint the Town committee is sensitive to the merchants’ concerns, hence the switch to Sunday, which affects fewer businesses. With an expected 300 to 500 volunteers (about 200 are currently signed up, according to volunteer coordinator Leah Wattree), prep work done the day before and the leadership of people who paint for a living (as well as use of their equipment), the time line will be met, Cole said.

Color Scheme: Port Orchard has historically had trouble effecting consensus on a decor for downtown. Remember the debate over the marquee? Several years ago, a committee of the merchants association researched colors that would wear well in this damp climate and not show dust from the exhaust of the hundreds of cars that travel Bay Street, a state highway, each day. They came up with a palette of Northwest shades of green, red and gold.

Delilah, when she first mentioned painting the town, suggested lighter colors with a maritime feel. But some landlords had already painted their buildings in the Northwest theme. Cole’s job has been to choose colors for buildings to be painted that are complimentary to those already in place yet acceptable to Deliah, who after all is springing for the paint. Cole has had to do some damage control surrounding rumors that the sprucing up was being forced upon building owners. Ultimately, she said, landlords and tenants must be on board with the proposed paint job.

“We’re here to help and give a free service to the community, not only for Cedar Cove Days, but for the entire future,” said Cole. “They had the impression they would be forced. We’ve straightened that out.”

Six of the buildings to be painted belong to Seattle biologist Mansour Samadpour, from whom Delilah plans to rent a building. Samadpour has previously held back on renovating the buildings. Because of the number and size of Samadpour’s buildings, the colors chosen for them will help tie the town’s decor together, Cole said.

The committee has gotten the go-ahead from the Mentor Company, which owns part of the block in which Delilah has her restaurant, Delilah’s Cozy Kitchin, and from Bob Geiger who owns the movie theater. The owner of three homes, quite ready for some new paint, has given permission, and the committee is finalizing negotiations with the owners of five other properties, Cole said. Some building owners, including the Olde Central Antique Mall, will do their own work.

“Butt Ugly” Port Orchard?: As plans began to unfold, Delilah, not known for repressing her opinions, described Port Orchard as “butt ugly” … on more than one occasion.

Some people, including barber Ernie Moreno, took offense.

“I don’t like it when people come in and say our town is ‘butt ugly,'” said Moreno, who characterized Delilah as a “queen bee” bent on pressing her own agenda.

Delilah, speaking by phone from a radio engagement in New York City Friday, admitted that her enthusiasm for the project may have come off the wrong way. Like Cole, she reference dthe damage control that was required to convince merchants that they would not be forced to partake in the project … and that the colors would indeed be tasteful.

“The response at first was pretty bad,” said Delilah. “We did a horrible job of communicating. I take all responsibility for that. Now they’re all excited and helping us.”

Delilah was hurt by the comments on media articles and the rumors that swirled around the town.

“Somebody started really ugly rumors we wanted to do it in Pepto Bismol pink,” she said. “People personally attacked me for no reason. I came in wanting to help Debbie and bless the community and help make the town beautiful and somehow it got turned into I wanted to turn it into pink trailer trash.”

Cole, who has a background in home design, said the public can rest assured.

“She has really good taste,” said Cole. “I have not had to say, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s horrible. She’s a very classy lady, and she has very classy taste.”

Delilah will not say how much she is donating for the event. Other merchants and corporate sponsors are also kicking in, she said.

“It’s a lot, but it will be worth it,” she said. “We’re excited. We’re hoping for a great turn-out.”

Volunteers, especially those with painting or construction skills, are still needed for the event and for Saturday’s prep work. To volunteer, call Cole at (253) 225-1096, e-mail paintthetown@ymail.com or visit www.portorchardpaintthetown.com.

Hear Delilah interview her South Kitsap neighbor and friend Debbie Macomber in April, 2008.

Confessions of a Cedar Cove Virgin

I have a confession to make. Although, as the South Kitsap reporter, I’ve been reporting on the upcoming Cedar Cove Days (Aug. 26 -30), South Kitsap’s tribute to author Debbie Macomber, I have not read any of her Cedar Cove books. The fictional series is based on the real-life town of  Port Orchard and vicinity. So compelling are the Cedar Cove books to Macomber’s legions of fans, that the Port Orchard library often sees tourists who are looking for landmarks from the town.

According to Branch Manager Kathleen Wilson, her staff can hardly keep Macomber’s books – Cedar Cove and others – on the shelves, even though they’ve added significantly to their collection, anticipating the event.

The Cedar Cove library, and its head librarian Grace Sherman, figure prominently in the second book in the series, 204 Rosewood Lane, I am told by Wilson. When I asked for a recommendation about where I should start in the series, this was the book Wilson suggested. Surprise, surprise.

I’m looking for your advice. What Debbie Macomber book should I start with to a get a true feel for the series?

What draws you to the books, if you’re a fan?

If you’re a Port Orchard/South Kitsap resident, do you relate to the settings of the books?

What character do you relate most closely to, and why?

Thanks for your thoughts.

Debbie Macomber (and Delilah) to Team Up at Chamber Meeting

South Kitsap’s resident bestselling author Debbie Macomber will speak at the Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce meeting, 11:30 a.m. Thursday at the Clubhouse at McCormick Woods. Macomber will whip up brewing enthusiasm for the upcoming Cedar Cove Days, Aug. 26 through 30. The event celebrates Macomber’s work and Port Orchard, which is the real-life inspiration for her popular Cedar Cove series.

Delilah Rene, South Kitsap’s radio personality in residence, will join Macomber to drum up support for a Paint the Town event Aug. 2. Delilah is spearheading the effort to put a fresh face on downtown Port Orchard for Cedar Cove Days. She and others are recruiting professional contractors and individual volunteers to help paint buildings in need of some love, with owners’ permission of course. Delilah will soon post a Web site to illustrate the current state of affairs, portorchardpaintthetown.org. The painting party will be an excuse for a block party, with music, face painting and other activities, Delilah said. Individuals and groups can sign up at paintthetown@ymail.com.

Here’s the press release from the chamber on Thursday’s meeting:

Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce July Membership Meeting on Thurs. July 9th at 11:30am at McCormick Woods Golf Course Banquet Room will feature bestselling novelist Debbie Macomber. Join us for a short, humorous, condensed version of beloved Port Orchard author Debbie Macomber’s thirty-year career in the publishing business. From her start as a young mother of four, writing out her stories on a rented manual typewriter (because they couldn’t afford the rent on an electric model!) to her current status as a #1 New York Times bestselling author, Debbie’s speech will keep everyone entertained and inspired. Port Orchard’s most famous hometown author will also describe some of the fun activities scheduled during the Cedar Cove Days festival in August.
Reservations are necessary and can be made online at www.portorchard.com or by calling 360-876-3505 by noon July 6th. Membership Luncheons are open to non-members, cost is $22 and must be paid in advance. Chamber members are $20 if prepaid and $22 at the door.

Cedar Cove Days Funded at $100,000

Volunteer event set for Feb. 19

Question of the day: What Debbie Macomber character do you identify with?

By Kitsap Sun Staff
Cedar Cove Days, a celebration of local author Debbie Macomber and Port Orchard’s role in her bestselling books, is building up a significant fund toward the event, set for Aug. 26 through 30 in POrt orchard and vicinity.
Organizers have raised more than $100,000, including a recent $20,600 grant from the Washington State Tourism Commission that is among 10 grants received this year.
The Cedar Cove Association also received $15,000 from the City of Port Orchard’s lodging tax allocation, a grant of $2,500 from Kitsap Bank and a Port Madison Industries grant of $1,000.
The association has been working with businesses and organizations to transform Port Orchard into the fictional Cedar Cove, setting of Macomber’s Cedar Cove series. Individual volunteers are needed for a variety of tasks, including portrayal of characters from the books.
The association is holding an All City Volunteers Rally at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 19 at City Hall, 216 Prospect St.. Volunteers can also contact the association via e-mail at cedarcovedays@aol.com.
For more information, visit www.CedarCoveAssociation.com.

Recapping 2008 Power Struggles Over SKIA

Today’s Kitsap Sun features a recap of top stories for 2008. We reporters were assigned to write synopeses of those for our coverage area. On my to-do list, because Steve Gardner’s on a well-deserved vacation, was the tension that developed over the year between Bremerton and Port Orchard over the South Kitsap Industrial Area.
But just as I was poised over my keyboard to begin writing, I was informed that SKIA didn’t make the cut after all.
Perhaps it more appropriately belongs on our list of upcoming 2009 stories, to be published later this week. After all, the issue of whether or not Port Orchard will be the designated provider of sewer services to the South Kitsap Industrial Area is yet to be settled.
Private property owners began pushing earlier this year for the annexation of the 3,250-acre area slated for industrial development into the city of Bremerton in the belief that the city is equipped to handle permitting faster than the county — a key component, they said, to encourage development.
The Port of Bremerton, which owns more than half of SKIA, agreed in August to move ahead with the annexation petition despite concerns over an agreement with the city of Port Orchard regarding sewers.
Port Orchard maintains it has a right to provide sewer service to the area under a 2003 agreement it signed with the Port of Bremerton. Since the process began, PO city officials have been pressing the port and the city of Bremerton for assurance that the agreement would be honored.
But Bremerton officials have resisted, saying it is premature to decide who will provide infrastructure to SKIA. Bremerton also is now in a position to run sewer lines to SKIA because of the extension of its sewer service to Gorst.
Tempers flared in July at a heavily-attended public meeting of the key players in the proposed annexation, including the port, Bremerton, Port Orchard and private property owners.
Following Bremerton’s acceptance of the annexation petition, Port Orchard challenged the proposal before the county’s boundary review board, triggering a public hearing and extending what could have been a 45-day process to 120 days.
The annexation is segmented into two parts, the smaller SKIA North, on which the BRB will deliberate at their 7 p.m. Jan. 8 meeting, and SKIA South, which includes the port’s property. There will be a public hearing on SKIA South Jan. 23. The BRB’s decision on SKIA North is expected Jan. 30; SKIA South is scheduled for a decision on Feb. 25.
Most recently, Bremerton challenged portions of Port Orchard’s comprehensive plan update, including a map showing SKIA as a future sewer service area. The final plan does not include SKIA on the map, but, count on it, Port Orchard will continue to assert itself with regard to the SKIA/sewer issue. Stay tuned.

On Politics and Sock Puppets

Here’s a blog post that we, as a newsroom staff, have been working on for more than a month. The delay in posting it reflects the care we took to weigh an appropriate response to a specific incident or rather series of incidents. At one point we thought it might dictate some sort of policy about blog comments. In the end, it became more of a philosophical issue, one on which we invite you to weigh in.

After I wrote about McCormick Woods a few months ago, Port Orchard Mayor Lary Coppola commented on this blog to clarify his position on what he thought was a critical story. His response was followed by several other comments in his defense, several under the screen names ‘Gumshoe’ and ‘LocalPoliticalJunkie.’

At least one other reader noticed similarities in tone and word choice between those two users and Coppola, both on that blog entry and elsewhere, including Coppola’s personal blog, which he has since (as of Dec. 1) turned over to guest writers.

We thought the similarities suspicious as well, and checked on where the posts were coming from.

We can’t get specific detail on a commentor’s residence from the registration form our users submit, nor can we even confirm the identity they use when they register. People comment anonymously on our site, and we allow that. But we can check the Internet Protocol Address of each user, which is a unique number for a computer or network hosting a number of computers. Using the IP address, our system can give general details, such as a residence in Port Orchard, or a government building. We don’t regularly check the IP addresses of users, but we can, and so we looked at those being used by Gumshoe and LocalPoliticalJunkie.

Their IP addresses matched the one used by Lary Coppola, who had registered and posted under his own name. That gave some credence to the suspicion that all three online users were the same person. We asked the mayor about it, and he said it wasn’t him. He didn’t have an explanation for why the IP addresses would be the same, but said he suspected the others were copying material from his personal website and using them on the blog here.

We can’t confirm Lary is either one of the other posters, but, in light of the evidence we found and his response, whether to report on our discovery became a protracted discussion in the newsroom. It’s an issue we haven’t come upon in the past, but as the nature of journalism moves increasingly online, it’s sure to come up again. So we’ve decided to bring it up now, even though we have seen little of gumshoe or LocalPoliticalJunkie over the past month.

There’s nothing explicitly wrong with readers using more than one screen name to register at kitsapsun.com. There is no law against using a second online identity to support comments you’ve posted using your first online identity (known in the online community as “using a sock puppet“). But the idea of an elected official doing so bothers us.

What would happen, for example, if a public official began to post misinformation on an upcoming vote, or a candidate for public office acted under many personalities in the course of campaigning? That doesn’t seem like behavior voters would look for in a public servant.

People are going to manipulate the system at some time, on some level, and there’s too much information and opinion out there to catch it all. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be skeptical at the appearance of such behavior.

We think elected officials should be held to a higher level of transparency in this new age of communication. Do you agree?

On a final note, we commend Lary for the comments he has made as a Mayor of Port Orchard. He is one of the few Kitsap officials to take part in the public conversation on the blogs, and we would encourage others to follow his lead.

Chris Henry, South Kitsap reporter
David Nelson, Editor

See Yourself in Debbie Macomber’s Cedar Cove

Fans of Debbie Macomber, now is your chance to indulge your fantasies, Organizers of Cedar Cove Days, a tribute to the best-selling author who lives in Port Orchard, are looking for people to play characters from her Cedar Cove series, based more than loosely on Port Orchard and its people. Word is Port Orchard’s Mayor Lary Coppola will play a role in the opening ceremonies.

So who do you see yourself as: the heroine, family court judge Olivia Lockhart? Her sometimes squeeze, newspaper editor Jack Griffin? Librarian Grace Sherman or any of the cast of many whose quirks and characteristics Macomber drew from local residents?

A number of organizations have already jumped on board to help with the festival, which features many events, teas, tours, a sock hop, cruises and more. People from all over the country have been buying tickets, despite the poor economy. If this trend continues, Cedar Cove Days could be the biggest thing that’s happened in little old PO since sliced bread.

There’s always room for more volunteers, according to Cedar Cove Days co-chairwoman Cindy Lucarelli. For more information, tickets and to volunteer, visit the Cedar Cove Days Web site.

Port Orchard, in Search of Self

Cautionary note: This post contains a challenge. Should you decide to accept it, you could earn eternal fame and admiration (or at least a momentary atta-boy … or girl).

I propose a contest to – drum roll here, please – “Brand Port Orchard!”

Port Orchard is sick and tired of being the “junk drawer of Kitsap County.”

That from Corrine Johnson, director of the Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce, which is enmeshed in a “branding campaign” to define, or redefine the Port Orchard/South Kitsap region. The chamber has posted a survey on its Web site, and they want to hear from you. But send your comments here, as well, so we can vet them in public.

Branding is the buzz word for promotion of a town or city through a catchy phrase (with complementary logo) that that seems to sum up all the best of a place. Seattle’s is “Metronatural,” which actually seems a little metroneutral to me. But what about, “What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas,” or Sausalito’s “Why They Built the Bridge.”

We need to come up with something at least that catchy for the PO/SK area.

Alas, PO, sadly, we do need help with our image.

The “junk drawer” reference is from a 2006 committee meeting of the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance’s Vision 2020 committee. According to Kathy Cocus, KEDA business development director, it was a remark made by someone half in jest. But it stuck, and it smarts.

Port Orchard it seems has been in the process of reinventing itself for as long as I’ve lived here (1979). In the 1980s it was the antique thing in downtown. Antique stores were joined by “collectibles” vendors, giving Bay Street a slightly seedy, hand-me-down look. City officials’ inability to decide on a paint scheme and whether or not to keep the Western-themed marquee added to the town’s identity crisis.

But when you think about it, Port Orchard and vicinity has a lot to offer, and, according to downtown business owner and resident, Tim Waibel, even some of Port Orchard’s apparent flaws could be seen as advantages.

Growing up in Poulsbo, Waibel thought of PO as nothing but “bars and bail bonds.” Now that he’s a resident, he says, he loves the “European” feel of being able to find a variety of entertainment all in one location. That would be Moondogs Too, Slip 45 and Myhre’s, plus the Historic Orchard Theater.

So how about, “Port Orchard, No Designated Driver Needed.” … OK, maybe not.

Bears, Bars and Bail Bonds?” … I said help, not grind us under your heel, thank you very much.

And hey, those bail businesses pay their taxes like everyone else.

How about, “The Second Hand Rose of Kitsap County?”

Or like when it rains really hard, “A River Runs Through It.”

Which reminds me of the recently repaired Bethel Sink Hole, which would make Port Orchard “Home to the Grand Canyon of Kitsap County.”

Sorry, it’s hard to resist. It would be so easy to have a field day at Port Orchard’s expense. Someone, on the story comments, has already suggested, “Laundromat by the Bay.”

But let’s take a tip from local author Debbie Macomber, whose Cedar Cove series is based on Port Orchard. Macomber said she writes about the town “warts and all.” That, she says, is what’s so endearing about Port Orchard. It’s real. C’mon folks what did you expect, Sea Haven?

Many people describe Port Orchard as quaint. I say, quaint has been done to death. What I like about Port Orchard/South Kitsap is its total lack of pretension. Like the annual Seagull Calling Festival. What other town do you know that celebrates people making complete and utter fools of themselves?

So How About, “Port Orchard, Dare to Be Quirky”

Mayor Lary Coppola said he doesn’t care if people think of Port Orchard as the “scrappy” little upstart town across Sinclair Inlet from big-old-Bremerton. Port Orchard is growing, says Coppola, its star is on the rise. So watch out, Kitsap, here we come.

I propose, “We’re Not Bremerton, and Proud of it.”

You can do better and you know it. Tell us what you like about Port Orchard. Why you choose to live here or visit. In short, what’s so great about the town, warts and all?

P.S. Speaking of quirky, there’s that pirate thing we’ve got going during the murder mystery weekend. While Bremerton’s over there being all metropolitan, we can proudly say, “Port Orchard, We Be Pirates!”

McCormick Annexation Money Matters

For anyone who may have missed last night’s meeting between McCormick Woods residents and city of Port Orchard officials, I will tack on at the end of this post a “Property Tax and Franchise Comparison” prepared by the city treasurer that answers the question:

What’ll it cost me?: Basically it’s a wash. City calculations based on 2008 numbers, show that the owner of a $350,000 home who as a county resident currently pays a total of $3,805.46 in taxes and fees would pay a total of $3,798.55 as a resident of Port Orchard. This does not include a storm water utility fee to be introduced in 2009 (approximately $90 annually).

McWoods residents in Port Orchard would pay a city property tax, which goes into the general fund and the city road fund, in addition to their county property tax, but they would no longer have to pay into the county road fund. And McCormick Woods residents would no longer pay the 50 percent sewer surcharge they now do as part of unincorporated Kitsap County, saving each household an average of $300 per year. (“Who would pay for that loss of revenue?” city resident Genevieve Hall asked me this morning. My notes from the meeting show the difference would be distributed among all city residents as a 10 percent increase in sewer fees.)

Will my property taxes go up?: In a word, no, at least not as a result of the annexation, according to Kitsap County Assessor Jim Avery. “We look as the whole urban growth area as one for our valuation purposes,” Avery said. Besides that, Avery pointed out, assessed values are trending downward at this time.

Will the city pay for streetlights?: (McWoods residents currently pay for their own streetlights in their dues.) The city would pay for any streetlights on public roads within McCormick Woods and The Ridge. Residents who live on private roads will continue to pay for streetlights.

Will properties in McWoods be rezoned, and therefore subject to a possible tax increase, as a result of updates in the city’s comprehensive plan?: Because McWoods is a planned development, no rezoning of properties within the annexation boundaries is expected or planned, Mayor Lary Coppola said.

How is the city doing financially?: Port Orchard has a long history of fiscal conservatism. Only within the last few years have they started including return envelopes with their utility bills, and city hall visitors must pay a penny a sheet for toilet paper if they have to use the restroom. (I made up the toilet paper thing, but it would be very much in the old PO spirit.) While the city expects 8 percent less in sales tax revenue in 2009 as a result of the economic downturn, it is also expecting to annex a considerable amount of commercial property, including Fred Meyer, which could offset the loss. The city’s budget is tight, and they will balance it by making adjustments, but they are in better shape than most of their neighbors (except Poulsbo), reported John Clauson, who chairs the finance committee.

So what’s in it for Port Orchard?: City officials have said the annexation, while it would provide increased property tax revenue and a small amount of sales tax revenue, would financially be “a wash” for the city. Six additional staff members would be needed to provide services to the area. As a larger jurisdiction, however, the city would be better eligible for state and federal grants and other funding, Coppola said.

Aside from any financial incentives, city officials say, they want McCormick Woods as part of the city because they see them as an asset. Coppola, last night, noted that with its many retirees, McWoods represents a new pool of potential representatives on the city’s volunteer boards or as elected officials. Somebody out there could even replace him, Coppola joked. He added that unincorporated McWoods is a small fish in a big pond (he didn’t exactly put it that way). As part of the city, however, they would be a big fish in a smaller pond and have better representation in their local government.

If this annexation fails, would Port Orchard try again by initiating an annexation itself? This could happen in theory. One method of annexation allows a city to initiate an annexation; then residents in the area to be annexed must vote on it. Would Port Orchard actually do this? probably not, said John Clauson. “Why would we fund an election if you’ve just told us no?” he said. If you choose not to, we’ll shake your hands and we’ll still be your neighbors.”

Here’s the line item financial comparison.