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Canby councilors agree to send letter to county commissioners about continued use of ferry

The issue of the Canby Ferry continues to be a topic that government entities are talking about.Now that they no longer have to worry about a toll bridge, the Canby City Council followed the lead from the Jan. 30 Clackamas County Commissioners' meeting, setting up a list of options to keep the ferry. The county commissioners at that meeting essentially said the ferry won't continue if operations persist as they are.

"The status quo is not an option," said Mayor Brian Hodson. He came up with a number of options to let the commissioners know what Canby is willing to help with.

While most of the council would like to see the ferry continue, no one agreed the city can or should fund the $400,000 annual figure necessary to keep it going, especially with the need for a new one by 2025. This is mostly because the city doesn't have the finances to do it alone.

By far, the most support went to the creation of a tax district that includes Canby, West Linn and Wilsonville. Members thought this would probably be best idea as well as possibly getting rid of the rural reserve area and finding another place for the bridge. Some also liked the idea of lowering prices to encourage more use and offering users to pay with credit cards. Another option would be for the three cities to make up the shortfall through their general funds.

Hodson explained the tax district idea for the three cities could be one of the better solutions. He also noted that charging homes within a two-mile radius at $124 per home per year; or possibly a five-mile radius at $12 year per home might be enough to remove the $400,000 loss, but questioned where the boundaries would be. He mentioned it might also work out to examine operations looking for efficiencies.

Click here to read the rest of the story in the Canby Herald.

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