By Kent Gray

Triplicate staff writer

Crescent City Harbor officials are considering hiring a grant writer to develop a harbor master plan.

Its definitely on the agenda, said Harbormaster/CEO Rich Taylor regarding tonights regular meeting of the Board of Harbor Commissioners. The plan is to get the grants written so we can hire somebody to create the master plan.

A letter from the North Coast Small Business Development Center was sent to the harbor commissioners with an offer to write the text and draft grant applications at no cost.

The assistance that would be provided ... will not cost the harbor any money, said Executive Director Fran Clark in the letter. The assistance is being funded as part of the Rural Technical Assistance Program, a legislative pilot project initiated by Assemblymember Virginia Strom-Martin and the Select Committee on Rural Economic Development.

According to Clark, County Administrative Officer Jeanine Galatioto requested that some assistance, given to the county under the program, be used specifically for a harbor development plan.

I met with (Galatioto) to introduce the program to her, said North Coast Small Business Development consultant and draft writer Mike McKenzie-Bahr. The IGRC (Intergovernmental Relations Committee) had expressed a desire to do this because they knew the harbor needed it.

Under the program, counties and cities are eligible for $35,000 block grants under two categories, economic development and community development, said McKenzie-Bahr. The intention here is to allow the harbor to utilize some of the economic grant money.

The county and city did not apply for their full amounts of the grants last year, McKenzie-Bahr said, indicating a willingness from both parties to help the harbor since the district cannot apply for the grant itself.

If the harbor commissioners approve the proposition from North Coast Small Business Development tonight, Taylor will probably be meeting with city and county officials on the details since those entities will be responsible for the final grant application.

Currently, the harbors only approved development plan is a hopelessly outdated 1986 master plan written by contracting firm Williams-Kuebelbeck.

This plan was revised and amended from an earlier plan dating to the early 1970s which contained projections for the 1980s.

Although the harbor has attempted to update its plan in previous years, the effort became enmired in contention and no new plan was ever approved by the harbor board.