It’s been suggested that the PC dock controversy is a tempest in a teapot. Well, maybe – but there’s another picture. Haines is being offered $5 million in grants, which won’t come again. We can still choose how to use it “probably, as long as it’s for harbor work.” Or so Bill Thomas has said.

Tourism wants bus parking and toilets. Is that what you want?

If not, you need to come forward with other ideas. Picture Point has been suggested. Or think of the peak oil crisis and what’s going to happen when it hits. The cruise ships are thinking about it and are busy cutting costs. They will certainly need affordable power while in port. Five million bucks would go a long way toward start-up costs for a tidal energy facility, which could power ships, dock, and town. Other grants would surely be forthcoming, including from the Department of Energy, which is pushing marine energy.

FERC is said to be offering expedited licensing. Haines could be a demonstration project for Alaska, with benefits for everybody.

The Mayor has not called any public hearings on the PC dock project. (The last were when it was just a bathroom.) The assembly minutes said only “discussed PC dock project” with no explanation. To say “the public process was served” simply ignores the fact that the public had no real chance to participate. We have to go back and do it right. We need those public hearings.

Sally McGuire