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Mayor Wheeler released this statement today:
“I am thrilled to announce that my request to expand Kitsap Transit fast ferry service to fill in the gap in Washington State Ferry (WSF) service on the Bremerton-Seattle ferry route is moving forward! It was announced today that the state will be supporting short-term fast ferry service to make up for the reduction from two-boat to one-boat service by WSF. We will continue working on this effort until service is fully restored. On Dec. 1, Kitsap Transit will begin extra Bremerton-Seattle passenger-only sailings. (See highlighted sailings by Kitsap Transit in image below.)
This was an outstanding effort and I appreciated working with the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance, Port of Bremerton, Teamsters Local 589, Bremerton Metal Trades Council, International Federation of Professional & Technical Engineers (IFPTE) Local 12, and Greater Kitsap Chamber who sent letters to Governor Inslee in support of my request for state support for expanded fast ferry service back in September. (See all their letters here https://bit.ly/3Svpkw8 and my letter to Governor Inslee here https://bit.ly/3BRLHGN). I also appreciated the opportunity to work with Senator Christine Rolfes, Senator Emily Randall, Representatives Tarra Simmons and Drew Hansen, Mayors Becky Erickson, Rob Putaansuu, and Joe Deets, Kitsap County Commissioners Ed Wolfe, Robert Gelder and Charlotte Garrido, and Bainbridge Island Councilmember Leslie Schneider who signed on to my initial letter to Governor Inslee in mid-September. In addition, I want to recognize and thank Kitsap Transit for supporting expansion of its passenger only service and for pulling out the stops to put together a proposal for the Governor. (Read Kitsap Transit’s letter to the Governor here https://bit.ly/3SBwQ9B).
While there have been challenges due to staffing and other issues on the WSF Bremerton-Seattle route, I appreciate that our concerns about the hardships our residents were facing were heard at the highest levels of state government. More Kitsap Transit ferry trips will provide consistent and reliable service for residents who depend on Bremerton ferry service for their livelihoods, medical care, and businesses.
I’m proud that this effort is moving forward and will be serving the citizens of Bremerton and surrounding communities in the weeks and months to come.”