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Banner season may put marina in the black PDF Print E-mail
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Written by KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM   
Wednesday, 13 September 2017 18:39

With boaters lined up for slips and bills paid, operation is on course to help offset city tax levy and cover its costs

    It’s been a good year at the Port Washington marina, and officials are hoping that means the operation will end the year in the black for the first time in three years.
    “We’ll know more next month but I’m optimistic,” City Administrator Mark Grams told the Harbor Commission Monday.
    The marina reserve fund is almost $271,000, Grams said, and two of the facility’s major expenditures —its debt service payment and fuel bill — are already paid.
    Grams said he is holding off on making a payment in lieu of taxes to the city until the end of the year to ensure the marina finances are solid.
    This has been a good season, Harbormaster Dennis Cherny said.
    “We’re over 100% occupancy,” he told commission members, and the marina currently has a waiting list for several sizes of slips for next year.
    “This is the first time in a long time it’s been that way,” he said.
   BOAT LG There are five people on the waiting list for 30-foot slips, five for 36-foot slips and three for 40-foot slips, Cherny said.
    In addition, two charter captains who trailer their boats are considering renting slips next year, he noted.
    Revenue from the north marina slip is up this year, commission member Jerry Baganz said, something the group had set as a goal for the year.
    To offset past budget shortfalls, the marina increased its rates by 1% this year. That brought in an additional $17,000, Baganz noted.
    Cherny recommended that the city increase rates by 3% next year, saying Port‘s would still be less than most of its competition’s with the rate hike.
    “Once we fill up, that’s the only way you’re going to bring in more revenue,” he said.
    Commission member Dan Herlache noted that when the 1% increase was approved last year, the panel agreed that its goal was to increase fees 5% over time. This would fall in line with that philosophy.
    If the increase is approved, Port’s annual slip rental fee for a 30-foot slip would be $1,648; a 36-foot slip $2,194; 40-foot slip $2,841; 45-foot slip $3,654 and a 50-foot slip $4,060.
    Daily rates would be $1.43 per foot and weekly rates $1.20 a foot.
    According to a study by Cherny,  Sheboygan’s marina rates with taxes  for the same size slips are $1,906, $2,263, $2,719, $3,470 and $3,922.
    The rates at Reef Point Marina in Racine are $2,050, $2,700, $3,250, $3,750, and $4,500.
    At Manitowoc, the rates are $875 for a 22-foot slip, $1,740 for a 32-foot slip, $1,985 for a 36-foot slip, $2,170 for a 40-foot slip, $2,615 for a 45-foot slip and $2,085 for a 50-foot slip.
    Cherny told the commission there are no major maintenance projects slated for the coming years, but added that any excess funds could be used to pay for improvements to the marina parking lot.
    The lot was last resealed about five years ago at a cost of roughly $10,000, he said.
    Commission members on Monday also gave a preliminary look at new job descriptions for the harbormaster and assistant harbormaster posts. They will take another look at them next month, since Cherny has said he will retire at the end of this year.

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