• Lummi Island Ferry in Jeopardy

    Posted on March 8, 2011 by ktiernan in Uncategorized, Waterfront News.

    Lummi Island residents are in jeopardy as the ferry service, which carries Island residents over Hale’s Passage, may be ending.  The Whatcom County had a lease with the Lummi Tribal Nations who owns the landing location, Gooseberry Point, and other crossing tidelands for 25 years.  After its expiration, the county paid a monthly fee to continue the ferry service.  Now, the tribal nation is asking for an additional $10 million over 10 years for improvements like sidewalks and streetlights on the road from Gooseberry point that runs through the tribal lands to town.   The Island has under 1,000 occupants who depend on the service to reach doctors, schools and jobs.  Because the county cannot afford the tribes demands, many residents may have to leave as a result.  There is a bit of controversy because the 25-year lease had a 25-year extension, but apparently wasn’t signed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, making the agreement invalid.  State officials, tribe members, and attorneys are still in talks about the fate of the Lummi Island Ferry.  Stay tuned for more information about the Lummi Ferry.

One Responseso far.

  1. denverite says:

    Your statement that “the county cannot afford the tribes demands” is inaccurate. It is choosing not to pay a reasonable amount. The county is vying so as to not pay fair market value. If the county actually invested in its infrastructure and a ferry suitable to dock at Fairhaven (and pay the Port of Bellingham *much* more than the tribe is requesting), there would be no need to attempt to strong arm and demonize the tribe.