The editorial, “Mayor’s politicking over Port lease hurts maritime industry” [Opinion, May 6] misses a critical point about the future of the Port of Seattle. I agree with the mayor that one can support the Port but not their lease to Foss Maritime to service Shell’s oil rig.
There are many global challenges to the Port’s maritime line of business, but a far greater one is the retention of public support to conduct business in a vibrant and encroaching city. Many developers would prefer to see condominiums and stadiums rather than container terminals along our working waterfront. Given the obvious controversy that would be generated by the symbol and real threat posed by the massive rig, Port commissioners should have engaged the public in an open fashion explaining why they thought it made sense and solicit comments to ensure that their staffs’ recommendations were in the public interest.
If the Port’s elected officials conducted themselves openly and transparently, it would engender public trust and understanding of Port operations that is far more important to its long-term viability and associated jobs than the loss of this short-term lease.
Fred Felleman, Seattle