>Miscellaneous – 4-11-11


Trillium Blooming In Preserve.  One of first flowers to bloom in the forest are Trilliums.  We took the following picture on Sunday to show just how beautiful these flowers are.  A couple of interesting facts from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trillium are:
Picking a trillium seriously injures the plant by preventing the leaf-like bracts from producing food for the next year. A plant takes many years to recover. For this reason in Michigan[1] and Minnesota[2] it is illegal to pick and/or transplant trilliums from public lands without a permit from the State.

Trillium is one of many plants whose seeds are spread by ants. At maturity, the base and core of the trillium ovary turns soft and spongy. Trillium seeds have a fleshy organ called an elaiosome that attracts ants. The ants extract the seeds from the decaying ovary and take them to their nest, where they eat the elaiosomes and put the seeds in their garbage, where they germinate in a rich growing medium.
North Perry Water Response.  We received the following response from North Perry Water’s General Manager, George Smalley, regarding our inquiry whether the community could help or show support for a possible relocation of the Riddell well:

I know it seems that there is always a correction to be made every time a news letter goes out, so here it is.
It’s not that the Tribe “ shut NPW down” on the proposed well site on Almira Drive.
It was the simple fact that the Tribe and Dr. Massman were convinced that pumping at the new site on Almira could possibly affect a stream in Tracyton, which is a closed stream with a healthy salmon run.
North Perry Water did not want to end up in Court over the appeal by the Tribes and could not agree on where or how much water could be added to several streams throughout the District to offset perceived pumping affects on the streams  from Tracyton to Brownsville and Illahee.
The new well site on Almira was to be drilled into a deeper aquifer than the well on Perry Avenue, which is  near the beginning of Illahee creek., ( Perry Ave well site),   and the Pickering well site @ maple and Pickering St. That would have allowed NPW to pump the shallow aquifer less at those sites, and hopefully give the aquifer more time to recover between pumping times. It would not affect how often the District would be pumping the Riddell site. It should be noted however that the Riddell well does pump from a  deeper aquifer than the Perry site and the Pickering well  site. Right now the aquifers  looks very healthy and water levels are good For whatever reason the District, has been pumping and selling less water over the last five years than previously, as are other purveyors in the County.
I believe it is the result of the economy and conservation efforts that are responsible for this.
Even though the shallow aquifers look good, we do believe that getting into the deeper  aquifer is the right thing to do . The District is still looking at other options when it comes to pumping out of the shallow aquifer.
It is good to know that the people of Illahee are willing to help in negotiations on a new site in the future if needed.

Piebald Deer Movement?  We were asked whether the piebald deer seen south of Illahee State Park, is the same one that was observed north of Illahee.  And so we have included the attached info on the north Illahee piebald deer so those around the State Park can tell us if it is the same one.

This is probably the same piebald deer that visits us every few days.  I am sending a couple of pics to see if its the same one.  I have pics of this deer from Summer of 07, so he is about 4 years old.  We actually are starting to see what I believe are some of his offspring.  They have a few white spots but are mostly cream colored.  I hope hunters don’t try to shoot this deer.  I have talked to the major land owners in my area and they have said they won’t allow hunting on their land.
Hopefully there is no hunting in the Illahee Preserve and the surrounding areas.
Rolling Hills Golf Course Gifting Finalized.  We have been waiting to hear that the gifting of the Rolling Hills Golf Course by Don Rasmussen and Kerma Peterson to Kitsap County has been finalized and just heard yesterday that it has.  Thanks to Don and Kerma and to Commissioner Josh Brown for helping to make it all happen.  

Possible Next Step re Timbers Edge?  We heard that the finalization of the Golf Course gifting is what the Illahee Community Club has been waiting for as they will now be contacting the two Land Trusts that expressed interest some time ago about the possibility of purchasing the Timbers Edge properties.  The golf course is evidently a major part of the bigger plan for expanding the Illahee Preserve and now they feel that they are in a better position for a land trust to want to come in to help.

Illahee Garden Tour This Summer?  We were notified that a core group of Illahee gardeners are pursuing whether there is enough interest to have a garden tour in Illahee this summer.  If you would like to be part of this group or have some suggestions for possible gardens that could be toured, please let us know and we will pass the information on.

Jim Aho

>Commissioner’s Meeting and Annexation Issues – 2-12-11


Commissioner Agenda Items.  We noticed two Kitsap County Commissioner agenda items of interest to Illahee that we wanted to pass on.  The link to the agenda is:  http://kitsapgov.com/boc/2011%20Agendas/Regular%20Meeting/2011_2-14-11%20AGENDA.pdf

Rolling Hills Golf Course.  The first agenda item of interest is a contract amendment to the Rolling Hills Golf Course agreement.  When the contract to accept the gift of the golf course didn’t complete in December it had us worried, but we understand everything has now been worked out and we are glad to see this item on the agenda.  We have been told that March 18th is the date to hold open in our schedules, so we think this will be the date of the actual transfer, but we will tell you more when we find out.  Below is the agenda item to be discussed at the Commissioner’s meeting.

Contract amendment with Rolling Hills Golf Course Partnership (KC-
343-10-A) to accept gift of Rolling Hills Golf Course. Fiscal Impact: N/A. 
Staff Contact: Nancy Buonanno Grennan, 337-4403.

Comprehensive Plan Changes.  Every year changes can be made to the County’s Comprehensive Plan, but they need to be identified early (most are already listed and any new itemssome by March 8th) so they can go through the lengthy public process.  The notice of this amendment process is made by a resolution that will discussed on Monday.  The agenda item for this is:

Public hearing to consider a Resolution providing the initial docket for 2011 
potential amendments to the Kitsap County Comprehensive Plan, Land Use and 
Zoning Maps, and Corresponding Development Regulations. Fiscal Impact: 
N/A. Staff Contact: Scott Diener, 337-4966

Interesting Kitsap Sun Article.  We read with interest the following linked article (along with the comments) as this is something Illahee could face in the future:

Island Lake residents cool to idea of being part of new city of Silverdale


Incorporation & Annexation Discussions.  We find the discussions of incorporation and annexation both interesting and concerning as Illahee’s southern region is in the East Bremerton urban growth area, and its center and north part in the Central Kitsap (Silverdale) urban growth area.  Theoretically this could mean the Illahee Community could be split up with one area eventually being annexed to Bremerton, and the other larger area eventually being annexed to Silverdale (presuming it will someday become its own city).  Or if the Barker Creek corridor is recognized as an urban separator between Bremerton and Silverdale, could it become part of Bremerton?  The problem becomes more complex when school districts are considered as Illahee is split between the Bremerton and CK school districts.  As you can see the issues are complex.

Experts At Feb 23 Community Meeting?  There have been suggestions that experts give us their thoughts at the Illahee Community Meeting being held at the library on the evening of February 23rd.  We agree and want experts who can talk about the Growth Management Act, our urban growth boundaries, and what the annexation issues and laws are.

KRCC Citizen Input.  One Illahee resident gave a response to the Kitsap Regional Coordinating Council suggesting Illahee be removed from the urban growth area.  Is this another possibility?  Would this resolve Illahee’s dilemma of being in two urban growth areas?  This is another question we would like to have the experts respond to.

Sent From Minnesota.  This update is being sent from Minnesota where the temperatures have been chilling but finally are today above freezing.

Jim Aho

>Culvert Concerns 1-15-11


Status of Culvert?  We have been asked about the status of the Illahee Creek culvert and whether the emergency clean-out by the county a few weeks ago has improved the situation.  For those who are new to these Updates or the Blog site, many think the culvert is in jeopardy and could fail, and those comments can be found earlier reports.
Saturday Measurements.  We measured the clear opening of the culvert on Saturday morning (1/15/11) before the rains and found essentially the same clear opening that was measured before the emergency clean-out.  In other words the emergency clean-out DID NOT decrease the sediment levels at the inlet end of the culvert.  See photo of culvert inlet.

Limited Measurement Opportunities.  We had to wait until there was a break in the rains as the creek water becomes too murky and too dangerous to measure when the stream is flowing full.  For those interested in actual measurements, there was a maximum of 29 inches of clearance before the clean-out, and today the clear measurements varied between 27 and 30 inches, depending where in the stream we took the measurements.

Large Logs Moving Toward The Culvert!  We received an email on Friday, along with some photos, alerting us the the fact that there are several upstream areas where there are large logs that seem to be moving downstream.  We received permission from the upstream property owner and took the attached photos.

What Happens if Logs Block Culvert?  So what will happen if the logs block the culvert?  First of all it will take a large rain to cause these logs to move, and secondly some of them would go through the culvert as the high velocity of the flow in the culvert would tend to move them quickly downstream.  If they should get lodged inside or in front of the culvert, the upstream basin area would quickly fill.  The increased pressure might be enough to force a blockage on through, but if not, the water would back up until it overflows at the lowest point of Illahee Road.  That point is probably just opposite the Krigsman’s driveway and would likely cause a road washout.

Why Report This?  The reason we are reporting this is because first of all it is a safety issued and secondly, something needs to be done to help resolve the storm surges that ravage Illahee Creek.  The storm surges have been polluting Puget Sound with large amounts of sediment for over 40 years and has been a concern for residents and the Port.  It became an even greater concern when everyone realized the relatively new culvert (installed in 1999) was also filling with sediment as the flood plain kept rising.  

Raised Flood Plains.  There is not much anyone can do with a raised flood plain.  Someone forwarded us the City of Issaquah’s Frequently Asked Questions on Flooding, which answers many of the questions Illahee residents have raised about the flood plain issues including dredging.  The link is:  http://www.ci.issaquah.wa.us/Page.asp?NavID=442 and their first sentences regarding dredging are:

Current Federal and State environmental regulations make it extremely difficult to justify stream channel dredging as a means to control flooding. While it can be done, it is very costly and time consuming to propose such work. …..

Time to Admit Culvert Failure.  We think it is time to admit that while the culvert hasn’t actually failed, it has technically failed.  It is time to look at either a significant culvert extension or a bridge for Illahee Creek.  But an extension or bridge would only resolve the threat to Illahee Road, and not the storm surge problem.

Time to Secure Golf Course.  So concurrently with correcting the failed culvert, it is finally time, after over 40 years of this small stream polluting Puget Sound, that the storm surges be brought under control.  The logical place for this to be done is at Rolling Hills Golf Course, so we would urge the county to finish the paper work to secure the golf course, which would be a good first step.

Please Let Us Know Your Thoughts!

Jim Aho

>Various Items – 9/1/10


Kitsap County Fair.  Several of us were at the Kitsap County Fair last week to answer questions regarding the Illahee Preserve, the Illahee Preserve/Illahee Creek Restoration Project, the Illahee Creek Surface Water Management Plan & stormwater issues, and the very recent gifting of the Rolling Hills Golf Course to Kitsap County.  We were there to help explain the many issues pertinent to Illahee and we kept busy all five days of the Fair answering questions.  Below is a photo of the booth that was in the Pavilion.  The Illahee Preserve photo board was in the Park’s Dept booth next door.

New Update Recipients.  We found there was much interest in what was happening with the Preserve, Rolling Hills Golf Course, and Illahee in general, with a number being interested enough to want to receive the Illahee Community Updates that are sent out periodically to over 400 recipients.  Most of the new recipients are those who live just outside of the Illahee Community boundaries, but nevertheless want to know what is happening as they are close by neighbors, with many using the Illahee Preserve.

Illahee Preserve Maps.  Over the years there has been considerable interest in the Illahee Preserve and the trail maps at the Fair, and this year we went through more maps than ever.  We depleted the Park’s Department pile and had to bring several hundred more that the Rotary and Illahee Forest Preserve group had printed up.  We should note that this is good as it shows the interest in the Preserve and also since we need to update the map very soon because several new trails have been added.

Letter re Rolling Hills.  Last Monday at the Commissioner’s meeting the following letter was read by Bob Jarvis.  The same letter was to be sent to the Kitsap Sun, but an earlier draft version was sent instead. We have printed the correct version that thanks Don Rasmussen and Kerma Peterson for their very generous gift of the golf course.

        August 23, 2010
Letter to the Editor:
        Thank you Don Rasmussen and Kerma Peterson, for your extraordinary and especially generous gift of the Rolling Hills Golf Course!  
Illahee has become a recreational destination in Kitsap County and the greater West Sound area in a large part because of your work in establishing a premier and affordable community golf course.  While Illahee’s unique topography has limited development, it has fostered some incredible recreational opportunities such as the golf course, Illahee State Park, the Illahee Preserve, and the Port’s Community Dock, making this area and Kitsap County a great place to live. 
The Illahee Community appreciates your incredible gift and forward thinking that preserves Rolling Hills as a golfing jewel for future generations, and at the same time ensures the continuation of the “meals on wheels” program for seniors throughout the area.  Your gift will also help us eventually control the storm water surges that pollute Illahee Creek and Puget Sound.
Thank you Don and Kerma, Commissioners, and Commissioner Josh Brown for making it all happen!
Barney Bernhard, for the Illahee Community Club

Illahee Community Meeting.  We have been reminded that we did not yet report on the Illahee Community Meeting that was held last Monday evening.  The meeting was primarily spent with Kitsap County presenting information on the Shoreline Master Program (SMP) update that is currently underway.  There were many questions and concerns as what will be decided will affect all the Kitsap County shorelines.  The rest of the meeting was primarily reports with no new decisions being made or voted upon.  

Brochures & Petition Delivery.  We have been advised that a stormwater brochure and a packet with a petition and a Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) sheet is being distributed throughout the Illahee Community.  Evidently there were approximately 850 petitions out of 1000 that hadn’t been distributed as they were hoping for a Grant or Land Trust to buy the Timbers Edge property.  When that didn’t happen they decided to continue the petition distribution and decided to include the new stormwater brochure that had just been developed.  They have covered the area north of Third Street and are moving south.  We also heard residents are helping out by covering the Nobles Lane area and Rue Villa.  We have heard they are going to stop when they run out of the 1000 petitions they had printed.  If you don’t get one delivered in the next two days, please let us know and we will send you by email the brochure, petition and FAQ.

Wildlife Pictures.  We have several wildlife pictures to pass on.  Deer continue to be frequent visitors to most all of Illahee.  This yearling buck didn’t seem to concerned until we got really close.  The cormorants are starting to come back to nearby floats.  A few years ago there was a cormorant at the Illahee dock that acted like it was someone’s pet.  The ravens are still in the Preserve, and gray squirrels seem to be moving further into the territory of the native Douglas squirrels.

Port of Illahee Meeting Date Change.  For the month of September only the Port has changed its normal 2nd Wednesday of the month meeting date and will be meeting on Tuesday, September 7th, at 5 pm at their new facility at 5560 Ocean View Blvd.  

Keep Sending in Information.  We will continue to pass information on that you send into us. 

Jim Aho

>Two Monday Meetings – 8/23/10


Newspaper Articles Re Golf Course Gift.  There were a number of newspaper articles this week regarding the Rolling Hills Golf Course Gift, including an editorial in Sunday’s Kitsap Sun, see the link: 
http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2010/aug/21/our-view-more-reasons-to-applaud-the-rolling/    Also, we were impressed by the article in Saturday’s Kitsap Sun by Brynn Grimley who had a great understanding of just why the golf course gift was especially appreciated by the Illahee Community.  The link to her article is: http://pugetsoundblogs.com/peninsular-thinking/2010/08/19/rolling-hills-more-than-a-golf-course-to-illahee-community/

Two Important Monday Meetings.  How can it be that after months with no Illahee meetings, that two important meetings that residents should attend, are scheduled on the same evening, Monday, August 23, 2010?

Quarterly Illahee Community Meeting.  The quarterly meeting of the Illahee Community Club schedules its meetings on weeknight evenings at the library and also asked Kitsap County reps to present information on the Shoreline Master Program update, which will begin at 6:15 pm.  This should be a great opportunity for residents to have an input in what they want for their shoreline areas.  They will also likely discuss the petition drive that stalled and is projected to resume soon.

County Commissioner’s Meeting Also Meets Monday.  The reason that there should be a representation at the Commissioner’s meeting that meets at 7 pm in Port Orchard is that they will be signing the agreement to accept the Rolling Hills Golf Course on Monday.  We just received a draft copy of a letter to the editor they want someone to read at Monday evening’s meeting – someone who is not planning on attending the meeting at the library.  We took the liberty of printing the draft copy below, though remember it is still a draft.   
        August 23, 2010
Letter to the Editor:
        Thank you Don Rasmussen and Kerma Peterson, for your extraordinary and especially generous gift of the Rolling Hills Golf Course!  
Illahee has become a recreational destination in Kitsap County and the greater West Sound area in a large part because of your work in establishing a premier and affordable community golf course.  While Illahee’s unique topography has limited development, it has fostered some incredible recreational opportunities such as the golf course, Illahee State Park, the Illahee Preserve, and the Port’s Community Dock, making this area and Kitsap County a great place to live. 
The Illahee Community appreciates your incredible gift and forward thinking that preserves Rolling Hills as a golfing jewel for future generations, and at the same time ensures the continuation of the “meals on wheels” program for seniors throughout the area.  Your gift will also help us eventually control of the storm water surges that pollute Illahee Creek and Puget Sound.
Thank you Don and Kerma, and also Commissioner Josh Brown for working with you to make it happen!
Barney Bernhard, for the Illahee Community Club
Help Requested.  If anyone could help out by attending the Commissioner’s meeting in Port Orchard on Monday evening, and at the end of the meeting during the public comment time, read the above letter or a similar version, it would be greatly appreciated.  Let us know if you can help and we will pass the information on the the ICC officers.

Tall Ships At Brownsville.  We were fortunate to be out boating by the tall ships on Friday and took some pictures, including the one below.  

Jim Aho

>Amazing News – 8/18/10

>Kitsap County to Acquire Rolling Hills Golf Course.  We received a call on Thursday afternoon that a press release was being prepared to announce that the owners of Rolling Hills Golf Course, Don Rasmussen and Kerma Peterson, had reached an agreement with Kitsap County in which the County would acquire the golf course subject to some very amazing conditions.  We think the Kitsap Sun reporter Brynn Grimmly did an excellent job of describing all the details, which will appear in Thursday’s Kitsap Sun.  We have attached the press release from the county and have provided the link to Thursday’s article:   Rolling Hills Transfer Seen as Win-Win for Kitsap County, Charity


Our Response.  This was something that was a dream for many from the time the county purchased the DNR land in 2001.  In 2003 the Illahee Preserve Stewardship Plan was issued that suggested the county consider a future purchase of the golf course to ensure it remained a golf course.  In 2006 there was a push to have the golf course zoned for housing at 5-9 homes per acre, which would accommodate nearly a 1000 homes.  The Illahee community fought that zoning proposal, and because of that fight the commissioners reversed the planner’s request and it went back to an urban reserve zone, which is one home for 10 acres.  Around the same time, the owners wanted to sell the golf course to the county, but negotiations fell through.  Subsequently, other approaches were looked at including a Centennial Clean Water grant obtained by the Port of Illahee from the Department of Ecology, which found the sediment pollution of Puget Sound was primarily from the area north of the golf course, but that likely golf course property would be needed for detention facilities.  It was thought the watershed study documenting the sedimentation problem would help justify a possible purchase of the golf course.  Subsequently the Port of Illahee looked at grant opportunities to purchase the golf course, but found there was little grant money available.  In other words we were coming up against road blocks in every direction we turned.  And so when we got the call we ecstatic and almost speech less that the golf course agreement had been forged.  Much thanks goes to Don Rasmussen and Kerma Peterson for their generosity, and to Josh Brown for finding a way for it to happen.

Jim Aho