Creation of Shoreline Task Force

By Christopher Dunagan

Kitsap Sun Tuesday, March 9, 2010

PORT ORCHARD — A 20-member task force, formed to help draft a new Kitsap County shoreline plan, was appointed Monday night by the Kitsap County commissioners “We worked really hard to make sure this task force is representative of a large number of interests,” said Patty Charnas, natural resources manager for the county. Most members have experience in shoreline issues, either in their private or professional lives.

Members will learn about the biological and physical functions of shorelines and later make recommendations on policies and regulations. The task force is scheduled to meet through June 2011. “I participated in the Critical Areas Ordinance ordeal and hope to not replicate the emotional arguments of the past if we can avoid it,” said Tom Nevins, a member of the Kitsap County Planning Commission. 

Regulations addressing shoreline buffers in the Critical Areas Ordinance in 2006 and 2007 generated heated conflict between environmentalists and property-rights advocates. Don Seavy of Seabeck, a marine biology professor at Olympic College, said he teaches students about intertidal processes.“If things can be preserved, now is a better time than later,” he said. 

In addition to Nevins, members representing specific interests include: 

Bob Benze, representing Kitsap Alliance of Property Owners. Benze is a retired environmental engineer with Puget Sound Naval Shipyard.

Art Castle, representing the Home Builders Association of Kitsap County. Castle helped create a guidebook for low-impact stormwater management.

Michael Maddox, representing West Sound Conservation Council.

Dan Fallstrom, a Manchester Port commissioner who will represent port districts.

Jessica Coyle, a fisheries biologist with the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe, who will represent tribal interests.

In addition to Seavy, members selected for their personal, professional or geographic affiliations:

Jim Aho of Illahee, who has worked with his community on environmental and shoreline issues.

Linda Atkisson of Driftwood Key near Hansville, a shoreline property owner who owns a small general contracting company.

Dave Nelson of Keyport, a shoreline property owner who works on community issues.

Jennifer Forbes of North Kitsap, a land-use attorney and former deputy prosecutor.

Ken Parker of Long Lake, the only lakefront property owner on the task force.

Mike Ingham of Chico, sales manager for a botanical company who understands shoreline processes and native plants.

Zachary Halls of the Bremerton area, an Olympic College student who is studying communications and marine biology.

Carrilu Thompson, a member of the Manchester Citizens Advisory Council.

Susan Cruver of Olalla, who has been involved in landscape design for shoreline homes.

Michelle Filley of Port Orchard, an environmental engineer who helped draft a “nearshore assessment” for the east side of Kitsap County.

Rebecca Mars of Seabeck, a member of the WSU Kitsap County Beach Watchers program.

Sunny Wheeler of Bremerton, another member of the Beach Watchers program.

Mike Ellis of the Bremerton area, a commercial fisherman and shoreline property owner. 

The 20 members of the task force were appointed from 46 applicants. 

During Monday’s meeting of the Kitsap County Board of Commissioners, Vivian Henderson of the Kitsap Alliance of Property Owners thanked the county for creating the task force, but chastised the Department of Community Development for failing to inform those who applied but were not selected that meetings of the group are open to the public. She suggested that agendas of the task force include an opportunity for public comment. Central Kitsap Commissioner Josh Brown said he thought that was a good idea. North Kitsap Commissioner Steve Bauer was impressed with the number of people who applied. “Finding people who represent multiple interests is really important,” he said. 

Anyone may attend meetings of the task force, which will be announced on the county’s Web site, Documents will be posted on the Web site, which includes a tab for anyone to offer comments. 

Kitsap Sun reporter Chris Henry contributed to this report.


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