The Naha Port Authority is a joint body including the Okinawa Prefectural government and the Naha and Urasoe municipal governments, and is legally speaking a partial-affairs association. Established on April 1, 2002, the port authority replaced Naha City as the organization managing port operations.
The Authority is a special local public entity established under Article 284, Paragraph 2 of the Local Autonomy Law that allows two or more local public entities to share responsibility for operations. Cleaning, firefighting, remote island medical care, and other such duties are examples of the responsibilities shared.
By the end of 2001 in Japan, five of these partial-affairs associations in charge of port management were in existence: the port authorities for Tomakomai Port, Ishikari Bay New Port, Nagoya Port, Yokkaichi Port, and Sakai Port. With the establishment of the Naha Port Authority, the number of such associations in Japan rose to six.
As a special local public entity working independently of the prefecture, Naha City, and Urasoe City, the Naha Port Authority has also established its own governing council.
The governor of Okinawa serves as the president (non-permanent) with three executive vice president positions, two of which are non-permanent and filled by the deputy mayors of Naha City and Urasoe City. The permanent executive vice president is appointed by the assembly, whose members select from among candidates jointly recommended by the heads of each constituent body. Takefumi Tahara has served as permanent executive vice president since May 2018. General staff positions are filled by members dispatched from each constituent body, and it consists of staffs from Okinawa Prefecture, Naha City, and Urasoe City.
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