Opinion

The bad and good of annexation vote | In Our Opinion

The Poulsbo Port District’s proposed expansion lost big in the Feb. 11 election.

Lost big, that is, outside of Poulsbo.

Updated election results Feb. 12 showed the measure with 285 votes in favor, and 807 votes opposed, a margin of 522 votes. That’s for all votes cast in Poulsbo, Lemolo, Pearson and Scandia.

But in Poulsbo alone, annexation received 157 votes in favor and 213 opposed, a margin of 56 votes.

The port district’s next step is clear.

This newspaper has long advocated the expansion of the Poulsbo Port District boundaries to those of the Poulsbo city limits. Our view has been that the port district benefits city businesses and residents, and can do more to benefit them, but half the city doesn’t have a voice in the affairs of the port district because they live — or, in the case of businesses, are located — outside the district boundaries. It makes sense that the port district boundaries and city limits would be the same. Sure, Poulsbo, Lemolo, Pearson and Scandia residents share Liberty Bay. But the connection ends there. They are different communities geographically and in spirit.

The port district should put an annexation measure on the February 2015 ballot — expanding the port district boundaries to the city limits. That gives the district a year to clearly articulate the benefits to residents and businesses of annexation.

THE VOTE
How residents voted on the Poulsbo Port District’s annexation proposal. Results as of Feb. 12.

— Poulsbo 401: 70 yes, 86 no
— Poulsbo 403: 9 yes, 11 no
— Poulsbo 404: 15 yes, 24 no
— Poulsbo 406: 63 yes, 92 no
— Lemolo 435: 98 yes, 249 no
— Pearson 445: 27 yes, 268 no
— Scandia 455: 3 yes, 77 no

 

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