Under the hottest-day-of-the-year-so-far sun, in Herrings House Park on the Duwamish River shore, the citywide media came to West Seattle to see a ceremonial letter-signing by Mayor Mike McGinn, U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott, City Councilmembers Jean Godden and Nick Licata, Harbor Island-based Todd Pacific Shipyards‘ Adm. (retired) John Lockwood, and King County Labor Council‘s Dave Freiboth. The letter (read it here) asks Commerce Secretary (and ex-Washington governor) Gary Locke to reopen the process that resulted in NOAA moving ships from Seattle to Newport, Oregon. Adm. Lockwood had the most fiery rhetoric – calling the move “bureaucratic arrogance” among other things:
The shortest speech – Councilmember Godden, who chairs the council’s Budget Committee, kept it to 30 seconds, ending with a vow:
A little cold water was thrown on the proceedings when a reporter told the mayor during Q/A that he’d just received a statement from Commerce reiterating they have no intention of reopening the process, but the mayor reiterated in turn that “it’s not over.” More shortly; the reason they chose Herrings House is that Federal Center South, right across the Duwamish, is considered to be a prime spot if NOAA did reconsider and stay in Seattle. (added) Here’s the official news release about the event.