Port of Port Townsend Commission

The district's policy making and regulatory body.

Under Title 53 of the Revised Code of Washington (RCW), the powers of the port district are directly vested in its board of commissioners.  Like a city council, the port commission is the district’s policy making and regulatory body.  Commissioners are responsible for making decisions concerning discretionary policies and operations of the district in both internal and external matters.  Port commissions are independent of the cities and counties in which they are located. Examples of commission responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • adoption of harbor improvement plans
  • establishing employment policies and work positions
  • real property management, purchases and sales
  • constructing and maintaining facilities and equipment
  • establishing rates, charges and regulations applicable to facility users
  • adopting periodic and supplemental budgets
  • levying taxes
  • borrowing funds when necessary.

Regularly scheduled meetings of the Port Commission include:

  • the second Wednesday of each month at 1:00 p.m. in the new Commission Building, 333 Benedict Street, Port Townsend, WA, and the fourth Wednesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. in the same location
  • public workshops called on an as needed basis.

You can find public notice of special meetings and workshops, meeting locations, and time changes at either the Peninsula Daily News, The Leader or on this website.


Elected to Term: January 1, 2012 – December 31, 2015
Elected to second Term: January 1, 2016 – December 31, 2019

Steve Tucker is a retired business owner and an avid boater and fisherman.

Steve grew up outside of Boise, Idaho where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology at Boise State University. Shortly afterward he and his wife, Cathy, moved out west, ending up in Port Townsend in 1981. Unemployment was even higher than it is now. There were no jobs in his field but they fell in love with Port Townsend and vowed to stay. Steve got a job at Thomas Texaco pumping gas and doing mechanical jobs. He later got on at Crown Zellerbach working in the bag plant. From there he moved into the Lab where, for several years, he performed lab duties and environmental testing and monitoring for what is now Port Townsend Paper Corporation. Wanting to work for himself, he left and took over the Texaco service station that had enabled him to locate here. After outgrowing that facility, he and Cathy built Auto Works which they operated together until they sold it in 2004.

Over the years, through the Coast Guard Auxiliary and the Power Squadron, Steve has taught many courses in boating safety, maintenance, navigation and electronics. He has served on Port-related committees including the A/B Dock rebuild committee, the Strategic Planning Committee and he was the “Boat Ramp Guy”.


Elected to Term: January 1, 2018 – December 31, 2021

Bill Putney is a retired technologist and entrepreneur.

Bill grew up in Southern California. In 1965 he enlisted in the U.S. Army and helped develop international arms monitoring sensors. Leaving the service in 1969, he studied computer science while designing custom recording consoles in Hollywood. Working nights at Pacific Telephone, Bill earned a Private Pilot’s license in 1972.

Moving to Northern California in 1976, Bill worked as a telecommunications engineer, manager and system designer.

Seeing the split of ARPAnet into MILnet and Internet in 1984 he recognized the potential and was a founding partner, CTO and President of California.Com a regional ISP. Bill also consulted on chemical analysis, medical diagnostic and microwave system projects.

In 2007 Bill and wife Gail bought their home in Port Townsend. Bill went back to school and received his FAA Airframe and Powerplant Mechanic’s certificate.

In the summer of 2009 Bill and Gail retired and moved to Port Townsend and devoted themselves to volunteerism. Bill was the early technical force behind KPTZ and continues as Chief Engineer. He also volunteers for the PTFF, Northwind Art Center, and AAUW.

As the past President of the Jefferson County Pilots Association, Bill began regularly attending Port Commission meetings in 2010 and was referred to as “The 4th Commissioner”.


Elected to Term: January 1, 2014 – December 31, 2017
Elected to second Term: January 1, 2018 – December 31, 2021

Pete Hanke runs Puget Sound Express, a family-owned passenger ferry and whale watch operation (and Port of Port Townsend tenant) located at the Point Hudson Marina.

His family’s previous boat, the 80′ schooner Alcyone, first sailed into the Boat Haven in 1972 when Pete was fourteen.  In his early twenties, Pete earned sea time working with the family’s charter business on Alcyone.  (He presently holds a U.S. Coast Guard 100-Ton Near Coastal Masters License.)

Pete first went into business with the purchase of Calm Sea Charters, a sport fishing operation. The company later expanded to include diving charters to the San Juan Islands.

Puget Sound Express was founded in the mid-1980s along with Pete’s parents, and now operates two vessels: Glacier Spirit and Olympus. Today, the company is onto their third generation with Pete and wife Sherri’s children, Christopher and Sarah, working as captain and crew.

Besides being a boat captain and a business owner, Pete is also a pilot who has enjoyed flying out of Jefferson County International Airport since 1998.  He and Sherri built their home on Larson Lake Road in 1994 and still reside there today.

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