$6.3 million in Federal money for Kitsap projects.

The Kitsap Sun announced the next 6.3 Million dollars of federal money grants to Kitsap County from the National Estuary program. Who says the federal government is broke? 

It is interesting that none of the money goes to actually improving the environment. Only one program comes close to impacting the sound, $250,000 to search out problems with stormwater in the Hood Canal watershed. The remaining 6 million dollars is spent on white collar welfare. Studies on:

  • A high-level assessment of the water resources, water quality, and fish and wildlife habitats
  • To characterize ecosystem values across the landscape and figure out which areas are best suited for preservation, forestry and possibly development.
  • To use ecosystem-management tools to determine whether publicly owned forests can generate enough revenue to pay for management and recreation costs while maintaining environmental integrity.
  • To identify the habitat quality of streams and wetlands by using existing LIDAR images of Kitsap County
  • To complete the Hood Canal Integrated Watershed Management Plan, which compiles all ecosystem information into a single plan for protection and restoration.

The full list of watershed grants can be found on the Department of Ecology website.

Hood Canal Coordinating Council: $550,000 (2 projects)

Integrated watershed management plan using Puget Sound Watershed Characterization Project ($300,000)
Complete an integrated watershed management plan using the Puget Sound Watershed Characterization that will guide the development of an in-lieu-fee mitigation program in the Hood Canal region.

Hood Canal regional stormwater retrofit plan ($250,000)
The council will identify, prioritize, and plan for retrofits of stormwater infrastructure in locations most important to protect and restore to limit surface water runoff and related pollution, and boost rainwater infiltration in the Hood Canal watershed.

Member organizations: Jefferson, Kitsap and Mason counties and Port Gamble S’Klallam Skokomish tribes

Kitsap County: $773,990 (3 projects)

Improve stream data to protect freshwater ecosystems ($369,176)
County will expand its water typing assessment by conducting a field survey of stream reaches and developing, testing and refining a computer model to better predict distribution of streams and fish habitats throughout the county. This includes developing an interactive, internet-based site available to the public.

Partner organizations: Wild Fish Conservancy and University of Washington

Sustaining ecological processes, working forests on lands at risk of development ($270,000)
Grant will be used to establish a community partnership to permanently protect working forest lands that provide key ecosystem benefits. This partnership will work to minimize the conversion of forest lands to residential development by applying a variety of land conservation tools.

Partner organizations: Olympic Property Group, Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe, Suquamish Tribe, WSU Extension, Great Peninsula Conservancy, and Forterra

Watershed based land-use planning ($134,814)
Kitsap County will prepare land-use recommendations for the county’s 2016 comprehensive plan update, based on an analysis through the Puget Sound Watershed Characterization project. The state departments of Ecology and Fish & Wildlife and Puget Sound Partnership used an EPA grant to develop this regional-scale tool which helps highlight the most important areas to protect and restore, and those most suitable for development throughout the Puget Sound region.

Read more on the Kitsap Sun.
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