A new boat will be joining Washington State Ferries’ fleet — and it needs a name.

The Washington State Transportation Commission is calling on Washington residents to help by submitting name nominations

The proposal will need to follow a few guidelines to be under serious consideration, the commission said in a news release Thursday.

That includes:

  • Having statewide or regional significance
  • Being representative of the state, including Indigenous nations and tribes, and geographic landmarks such as rivers, cities and counties that have maritime ties.
  • Consistency with the names of the ferry system’s existing fleet.
  • Having broad familiarity and is not offensive.

While the commission says names that are commercial or honor individuals should be avoided, it will still consider nominations if the person has been deceased for at least 20 years and played a significant role in the history of the state or within the region.

Submissions need to give background on the name choice, explain how it fits with the guidelines and show public support for the nomination.

Why your ferry might be late — or canceled — this summer
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The deadline to submit proposals is 5 p.m., Oct. 1. It must be submitted both electronically to transc@wstc.wa.gov and by mail to the Washington State Transportation Commission, PO Box 47308, Olympia, WA, 98504.

The new, hybrid electric Olympic Class ferry is scheduled to be built in 2022 and will hold up to 144 cars. It’s not slated to sail until 2024.

The current Olympic Class vessels are named Chimacum, Samish, Suquamish, and Tokitae.

Tbe ferry system has said it couldn’t afford new boats for a decade, citing fallout from a car-tab cut in 2000. New taxes since the mid-2010s are replenishing the budget. The existing fleet of 21 boats is working past retirement age, and three vessels are at or approaching 60 years old.

Staff reporter Mike Lindblom contributed to this report.