The Port of Klickitat has "surplused" two parcels of land at the Dallesport Industrial Park to help clear the way for new businesses to locate there.
The Port is accepting sealed bids for the purchase of the parcels, with the bids due no later than July 29.
The parcels for sale -- No. 23 and No. 24 -- offer a combined 7.29 acres. The parcels are at the entry to the Port of Klickitat, at Dock Road and Highway 197.
The land at the industrial park has been appraised at between $35,000-$37,000 per acre.
However, Port of Klickitat Executive Director Dianne Sherwood noted that the law allows port districts to consider "other factors" besides money in determining which bid is the most suitable.
"Jobs are `other factors,'" Sherwood said. "Would we give more weight to a company that could create more jobs? Absolutely. That's what we're here for."
Port officials hope to sell some or all of this acreage to a Portland-based specialty wood products company that could bring dozens of jobs to the area.
Sherwood added that any money earned from the sale of the land would be put back into infrastructure improvements at the Dallesport Industrial Park.
"The law requires that property be made surplus prior to being available for private development," explained Sherwood. "This is a large employer with 45 jobs. We're waiting to get a proposal from them."
Sherwood declined to identify the company until a deal could be finalized.
Crestline Construction, a company from The Dalles, is currently working on the Dallesport sites to ensure that all the needed infrastructure is in place.
Klickitat County entered into a contract with Crestline to provide infrastructure to five Dallesport Industrial Park lots.
Only two of the five lots are currently for sale.
Klickitat County Commissioner Don Struck said he is "90 percent sure" the Port will have a purchase offer on some of the property at Dallesport by the end of the month.
"The company is pretty committed to the [Dallesport] community," Struck said. "We've been working with them for about six months."
"Hopefully we'll have 45 more jobs here soon, and these are good jobs. Production wages are between $9-$12 an hour," Sherwood said. "They will bring some key people from Portland and some workers may relocate, but we're hoping they will hire local folks too."
The contract with Crestline, which includes landscaping work, will be for at least $460,000. However, a representative of the county's Public Works Department pointed out that those figures reflect the total in the original contract, which was for infrastructure work on four lots. Five lots are being prepared, so the cost will be somewhat higher at completion.
"All utilities will be in place on those lots by fall," Sherwood said. "Everything is moving forward."
The Port of Klickitat Board of Commissioners voted 3-0 to surplus and sell the parcels at the board's regular meeting on June 24.
Sherwood said she was hopeful the incoming company would begin construction on the property by Jan. 1.