February 26, 2019
Meeting was called to order by Carol Johnson at 7:30am. Frances Charles led the flag salute.
Peggy gave a “history” moment.
Dick P. moved to accept January 29 and February 5 minutes, seconded by Julie. Motion carried.
Jackson Smart, Paul, Johnnie (Captain Ts), Mike Holiday (Farmers Insurance), Chris Fiddler, Jake Patteson (Clallam Fire Rescue), Laurel (PA Farmers Market), April (Odyssey Book Shop).
A card was passed around congratulating Young Johnson for Ocean Advocate award.
Mathew announced Pennies for Quarters fundraiser March 23 from 6:00 – 9:00pm.
Program: Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe – New Hotel Downtown
Andrew announced Frances Charles, Michael Peters, and Linty Hopie from Lower Elwha Klallam tribe to talk about the new hotel downtown.
Michael Peters said he’s happy that the tribe had the vision to change the downtown corridor and is excited to partner with the waterfront art center.
He talked about challenges of change in city staff, 2,000 tons of contaminated soil needing to be removed, a major power switch on the structure, and retaining the structure of the Cornerhouse and road. They are now scheduling the pre-application with the city.
Robert Utz has been hired as GM of the hotel and he talked about his transition from Red Lion. It will be an independently run hotel, not a franchise. They have acquired the property as of the end of last year, now they are working on permits.
Mr. Peters said once they have the demolition permit it should take about 4 weeks, then about 6 – 8 weeks for cleanup. They may get to ground level in about 3 months. Structural engineers were recently out re-evaluating the founds of neighboring buildings.
Chairwoman Charles said they want to identify their cultural ties to the community. They’ve started a design concept including tourism activities and will be integrating with the waterfront center. Tribal members are on board and they are talking about job training. Mr. Peters said there will be about 100 rooms, a bar and pool. A traffic management plan is being developed right now and there will be impacts. They are in talks with the city and will have parking onsite.
When asked about financing Mr. Peters only said that $24 million is being financed. They haven’t decided on prices yet but they will provide a product near / at the top for quality and experience. He also said that the room tax at 4% now should be at 10% and questioned why it wasn’t at market rate. He again was asked about financing and said they have secured funding. They will be internally operated for all retail, food, beverage, etc., and are looking at a concierge service.
He said he is excited that there are three major projects planned for the same time and the market is ready for it. He is not talking directly with Jamestown and said they are building for a different customer base whose main market is gambling. They will have a small meeting space and amenities are being defined to fall in a 3-4 diamond category.
They will have about 60 staff but it’s driven by occupancy. Regarding raising taxes by room, Mr. Peters said those that depend on the tourist industry look at the why and how of spending money. If they spend wisely they will fill new hotels and more.
Mr. Peters said they are phasing him out of the day to day, for profit arm of the tribe, so he can focus on the hotel. Linty and Suzie are helping with the enterprise. The contractor is PNE Corp. out of Longview, WA.
The west side casino idea hasn’t gone anywhere except for a very small extension on the reservation. The fuel station is doing well and they have 17 acres to work with.
When asked about cost overrun for cleanup he said there will be a point where it’s not feasible, but with core samples so far he is confident they’ve identified the area of contamination and it’s not spreading. Cost of where the soil goes has increased. Linty talked about having small meeting rooms, 650 sf each, and about the partnerships to provide lodging for the waterfront’s meeting rooms and special events.
Estimated time of opening is 18 months from the time they get permits.
Carol thanked guests.
Andre said there is a joint meeting with the Chamber of Commerce, so March 12th PABA will be cancelled in order to meet Wed., March 13 at the chamber event.
Carol said PABA has set a goal of 80 members and asked attendees to join.
There is a Government Affairs meeting right after this meeting ends.
March 12: Cancelled
March 13: Joint PABA / Chamber of Commerce Meeting
Meeting adjourned at 8:30am.