>Miscellaneous Items – 5/2/08

>Illahee Community Plan Meeting on Monday 5/5/08. This is the meeting that was originally scheduled for 4/28/08. Representatives from the Kitsap County Health Department will be there to presumably discuss items like septic systems, sewers, stream monitoring for contamination, and other related issues. The meeting is at the Unitarian Church on Perry avenue and begins at 6 pm. All Illahee residents are welcome.

Illahee Outfall Appeal scheduled for Monday evening 5/12/08. This appeal before the county comissioners was discussed in a previous update. Because the appeal was scheduled at the same time as the Illahee Community meeting, the Illahee Community Plan meeting was moved to Tuesday evening 5/13/08 (see the next item).

Illahee Community Plan Meeting on Tuesday evening 5/13/08. This will be the 6th meeting in the series and we think it will be a more detailed discussion of Chapter 4. The county evidently could not find a meeting space in the Illahee area and decided to hold the meeting at their facilities in Port Orchard. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 6:30 pm rather than the usual 6 pm, in order to give people time to travel to Port Orchard. We will provide more information on the 5/13 meeting in a later update.

Timbers Edge. We have heard that the developer is completing reports the county asked for and they expect a hearing soon afterwards. This is a major high density development along side Illahee Creek that will forever change the Illahee community if it goes ahead as planned. We have asked the county planner for this project for a briefing so that the community can better know and understand the details of the development being proposed. Again, we will provide more information as it becomes available.

Wetlands on Third Street? We have had a number of residents call to ask about the excavation work going on at the Gilberton Creek headwaters south of Third Street between Sunset and Rest Place. It is reported to be a very wet area upstream of the culvert where the wet black dirt is being removed and trucked away. Residents said they have contacted the county to find out more information, with one report coming back that the county is aware of the situation and that the county approved the removal of the wetland appearing area as part of a buffering averaging formula. Please note that this is all second hand information so we are hoping for a more detailed report and will pass on what is provided.

Illahee Road Washout Project. The county provides monthly status reports on the Illahee culvert replacement project at the Gilberton Creek washout. This link is the end of April 2008 status report.

Peregrine Falcon sighted. Over the years we have had reports of Peregrine Falcons in the area. These birds are some of the fastest animals in the world, reaching speeds up to 100 miles per hour. The sighting was possible because the falcon hovered giving the resident an opportunity to positively identify it.

Raven menaced by crows. We have had ravens in Illahee for the past 4 or 5 years. Ravens are at least twice the size of crows and the crows harass them whenever the ravens are around, which brought this to the attention of a resident. When you see both of them together the size difference is readily noticeable. Also, the raven has a much deeper and distinctive call than a crow.

Keep supplying us news. Keep providing us information and we will pass it on to the community.

Jim Aho

>Illahee Outfall Appeal to County Commissioners – 5/1/08

>May 12, 2008 is the date of the upcoming Illahee Outfall appeal to the County Commissioners.

BACKGROUND:

Phase One. The MT Illahee Corporation has proposed a phased development of a number of legacy lots in Illahee. The first phase is 10 homes on 1.03 acres on Sunrise Terrace. (Note that the developer said it was 10 homes on 2.41 acres but they included the county right-of-way in front of their 10 lots and approximately a quarter mile of the roadway going to Ocean View Boulevard.)

Phase Two. The second phase is for approximately 50 plus homes on slightly larger than legacy lots (47 ft x 90 ft instead of 40 ft x 90 ft) located further up the hill and south of Ocean View boulevard. Note that the lot size is still less that allowed by our current zoning which would require a 65 ft x 90 ft lot. Also note that the club has entered into discussions with the developer in March 2008 and asked that he consider increasing the size of their lots to conform with the current zoning (along with more infiltration and outfall options while he in turn is considering increasing the stormwater treatment level).

The Outfall. The first phase, and the second phase, requires piping the storm water downhill to the Sound. The existing 24 inch outfall pipe that has been problematic for the community since it was installed in the early 1990’s is not large enough to accommodate the volume of stormwater from the new homes and roadway, thus requiring a new 18 inch line and a 42 inch outfall next to the existing outfall and located directly under the dock.

County Approved. The county approved the development on October 23, 2007, subject to some minimal mitigations, and the location the outfall at the Illahee community dock. They also approved pre-treatment (removal of solids) of stormwater rather than basic or enhanced treatment (which remove other contaminants).

Community Opposition. When the community met to discuss the proposed development and outfall, they voted overwhelmingly to oppose certain aspects such as the higher than zoned density, the stormwater not being significantly infiltrated or treated, and the dumping of the storm water at the base of the dock. The Illahee Community Club filed an appeal regarding the County’s SEPA (State Environmental Policy Act) determination, as did the Port of Illahee.

The Hearing. The hearing was held on November 8, 2007 and the Hearing Examiner approved the project with some additional mitigation and denied both the community’s and the Port’s appeals. (They were told in advance that the Hearing Examiner, who is hired by the county, politely listens to citizen appeals, and nearly 100 percent of the time, sides with the Kitsap County staff and against the citizens.)

Decision to Appeal. After reading the Hearing Examiners decision the Illahee Community Club felt the Hearing Examiner did not follow SEPA regulations and failed to consider some some of the facts presented, and so they decided to appeal the decision to the County Commissioners.

Why Appeal? This appeal to the Commissioners is limited to the items discussed or presented during the hearing, and history is not favorable for those appealing. The Commissioners, like the Hearing Examiner, nearly always support their county staff, and normally deny citizens appeals. Some have said it is a waste of the $500 filing fee, not to mention thousands of dollars in lawyers fees. The Illahee Community Club felt the issues too important to not have an opportunity to present their case to the Commissioners and want to see where the Commissioners stand on the issues.

PREPARATION FOR THE HEARING

Postponement Request Denied. At the February 2008 meeting of the Illahee Community Club it was decided that the club should look at working with the developer to see if they could come to some agreement rather than spend money on legal costs. Several representatives have been meeting and looking at various options, and proposed a postponement of the May 12 hearing to the developer (which needs to be agreed upon by both parties) in order to have more time to discuss the issues, but proposed postponement was turned down, so they had no choice but to begin to prepare for the hearing.

Board Members Meet. Members of the Illahee Community Club Board of Directors met on 4/30/08 to go over some of the issues.

Only Minutes Allowed for Appeal. One of the problems is that only 15 to 20 minutes are allotted for the appeal, which doesn’t allow much time cover some significant and complex issues. However, they are able to submit of brief of their written arguments.

Request for Help. There are a couple of areas currently being researched and with limited time they requested we put out a note that they could use some help. Please respond to this email if you know of someone who might be able to help and we will pass that information on.

Jim Aho