County asking for input over Grays Harbor Raceway promotions

MONTESANO — Grays Harbor County is soliciting input for those interested to lease the Grays Harbor Raceway facility — or who just want more information about it.

Last week, the county commissioners canceled the contract with Great Northwest Promotions LLC, citing numerous unpaid bills owed to the county.

County Commissioner Wes Cormier says that formal requests for information or requests for proposals are not yet being entertained, but the county wants to be prepared for when that happens.

“The racing season just ended two weeks ago and won’t start up again until April so we have some time here,” Cormier said, adding that he’s not a big racing fan., but understands its economic importance to East County.

The commissioners have tasked Deputy Prosecutor Jim Baker to come up with a new contract that more clearly spells out the responsibilities of the contractor.

Cormier said the county has heard from Great Northwest Promotions head Jerry Schram.

“He was obviously not happy,” Cormier said. “We’re hoping for a positive transition here.”

The county installed a security barrier around the offices and won’t let anyone in until the county knows who owns what.

One missing big item is the giant grader that the racetrack used to smooth its surface. It’s simply vanished, County Commissioner Frank Gordon said.

“The problem is we can’t technically report its missing because we don’t know if we even own it,” Gordon said. “That’s how much of a mess this all is as we sort it out.”

Great Northwest Promotions took over the contract in 2007, following the death of Fred Brownfield, who is largely seen as the man who revitalized the Raceway. Cormier said that Brownfields family was said to have donated equipment to the county.

“We don’t know what’s ours, what’s theirs and we’re looking for property lists and inventories as we sort it all out,” Cormier said.

Anyone interested in running the Raceway should email with their name, organization, mailing address, phone number and email address.