Commentary: Port of West Sacramento?

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(Sacramento, CA)
Friday, August 26, 2005

The Port of Sacramento is bleeding money. It's lost five and a half million dollars over the last five years. If nothing is done soon, the port will have to sell off all its valuable assets just to pay its operating costs.

Four jurisdictions - the city and county of Sacramento, and Yolo County and the city of West Sacramento - share responsibility for the port. That's too many cooks in one kitchen. Before the port can be rescued, someone has to decide who's in charge.

It's long been clear that should be the city of West Sacramento and Yolo County. The port sits totally within their boundaries. West Sacramento especially is most impacted by what happens there. Sure, the city and county of Sacramento helped finance its construction, but the federal government paid the lion's share, by far. And because a thousand acres of land was taken off local property tax rolls to build the port, Yolo County and West Sacramento have contributed millions in revenues over the years.

Opportunities to make this port viable are fast slipping away while politicians squabble over who's in charge. If they don't stop, soon there will be nothing left to fight over. Give control of the Port to West Sacramento and Yolo County, and, for heaven's sake, get on with it.


Ginger Rutland writes for the Sacramento Bee Opinion pages.