The Wrangell Port Commission Thursday discussed finding a new docking location for the Rainforest Islands Ferry.

Ferry General Manager Kent Miller was at the meeting to make his case for the ferry. He said the ferry gives Prince of Wales residents a chance to shop in Wrangell and opens Prince of Wales Island and Mitkof Island to recreational opportunities for Wrangell residents.

But the ferry is having trouble staying on schedule because it lacks a suitable place to load vehicles in Wrangell.

The ferry connecting Wrangell, Petersburg and Coffman Cove has been using the inner harbor city launch ramp to load vehicles. But the ramp cannot be used at low tide, so the ferry’s ability to get cars on board is limited.

Port Commission Chairman Clay Hammer said the ramp at the end of the airport runway is being evaluated as a possible docking location.

“It’s a DOT area and they’ll have to go through the DOT process to get access to that. But Mr. Miller’s already started that process, and we’re hoping that will work out really well for him,” Hammer said. “It’s a very nice ramp, it’s got a very nice staging area, and it has close proximity to the airport, so it’s got a lot of good potential for him.”

He said the commission is still trying to find a short-term landing area for the ferry to use while the airport ramp is being discussed with the Department of Transportation.

The commission also talked about security at the Marine Service Center.

A 500-pound foamer for putting out fires, which belongs to the harbor department, was recently stolen. There have been other problems with theft in the boat yard, so port commissioners agreed security cameras would be a good addition to harbor department facilities.

But Hammer said security cameras are a matter of funding, which is really tight right now.

“I think that really would go a long way towards the safety and the welfare of the Marine Service Center,” Hammer said. “It would certainly address some of the theft issues and accountability issues that sometimes take place within the yard.”

He said he would like the commission to revisit the issue and try to find funding for cameras.