>Filmmaker Selected to Tell Illahee Story. We received an email on October 9th, that a filmmaker had been selected to prepare a film about Illahee and more specifically to cover the findings in the Illahee Creek Surface Water Management Plan. The filmmaker is Shelly Solomon of Leaping Frog Films, who has worked in the area for a number of different groups, including the Puget Sound Restoration Fund, whose website contains some of her work http://www.restorationfund.org/news.php. The film is part of public information and eduction task of the Dept of Ecology Surface Water Management Plan grant with the Port of Illahee that funded the Parametrix study that has been reported on earlier. It was felt that few Illahee and county residents are aware that Illahee Creek is contributing to the pollution of Puget Sound because of unconstrained storm water, and that the fixes to resolve the problems are estimated to be $20 million. Two films will be prepared, a short one, approximately 10 minutes, and a longer one, approximately 30 minutes.
Port of Illahee informational meetings: Fire station #41 Old Military Rd. on Tue 6/1 and Mon 6/14 at 5:30pm. The Port Commissioners want to hear from all Community Members in the Port District. We will have information on the Illahee Plan, the petition from the Illahee Community Club, the Port’s opportunity with the Timber Edge option and how these issues could potentially effect community members.
>Illahee Community Meeting Monday 5/17. There is a very important Illahee Community meeting on Monday evening, May 17th, beginning at 6:15 pm, at the Library on Sylvan Way. The consensus at the last meeting was to try and hold community meetings on a weeknight evening rather than a weekend afternoon, as this time of year there are many other competing events.
Rain Garden Mulching. On April 17th six brave souls braved the rain and weeded and mulched one and a third of the five rain garden plots at the Illahee Preserve’s Almira parking lot. It was a good start, but much more is needed to be done as can be seen from this photo.
>Quail Report. Awhile ago we got an email from someone reporting seeing quail. There used to lots of quail around the area and years ago most of a covey (19) landed on a large deck we had at the time. Since then the sightings have decreased to the point we wondered if there were still any in the area. If anyone has them around it would be nice to see a photo.
February Illahee Community Meeting? The Illahee Community Club (ICC) holds its regularly scheduled meetings the middle month of each quarter and is looking to meet later this month at a time and place to be decided later. This is the meeting where current information about what is happening in Illahee is shared, along with regular reports about what the ICC is doing. Notice of the meeting is provided by signs throughout the area along with notice by email to residents who have provided their email addresses. The signs should be coming out soon.
Appeal Information? There evidently are some issues going on with Superior Court appeal regarding Timbers Edge that we hope will be discussed at the ICC meeting. We have heard something about the Shorelines Hearings Board appeal being delayed for discussions to take place and hope to find out more at the meeting. These appeals have been taken on by the ICC and they note they have been costly and they appreciate the community’s continued moral and financial support, both of which are needed.
Illahee Preserve Demonstration Rain Garden. This project to install a demonstration rain garden at the new Almira Illahee Preserve parking lot is a GO. We heard that a majority of the native plants have been ordered from the Kitsap Conservation District and they will be picked up on Friday, March 5, 2010, and that a planting party is being planned for Saturday, March 6th, and possibly as a backup, Sunday, March 7th. Evidently the area has been divided into 5 rain garden areas and volunteers are needed to do the planting. There is a letter scheduled to go out this week that is supposed to describe the project that we will pass on when it comes out.
Why Rain Gardens? The short answer is they help slow down and clean stormwater which is especially needed in the Illahee Creek Watershed to help alleviate the stormwater surges that plague Illahee Creek and Puget Sound. We noticed the article in the Kitsap Sun this week written by Kitsap County Commissioner Josh Brown that helps explain why the county is finally getting interested. When we presented stormwater arguments at the Illahee Outfall appeal, Josh was the only Commissioner that sided with the Illahee Community, and while we lost that appeal to the Commissioners, we ended up with a favorable mediated agreement as the result of the appeal to the Shorelines Hearings Board. The article link is: http://www.kitsapsun.com/news/2010/feb/04/my-turn-stormwater-crisis-needs-solutions-now/
The Other Reason For Rain Gardens – Aquifer Replenishment. The other reason for rain gardens is they help infiltrate water back into the aquifers, which are needed to maintain the baseflow in Illahee Creek (because that baseflow comes from the underlying shallow aquifer). That fact has been established as the results of community funded studies that totaled almost $10,000. (As an aside comment regarding Illahee aquifers, we felt the County Commissioners did little to protect our aquifers in their Timbers Edge decision when they stipulated infiltration, but then added the escape clause “to the extent feasible.” If they were really serious about protecting our aquifers, they wouldn’t have added an escape clause. Maybe some day the County will come around to respect our aquifers, like they are coming around to be concerned about the effects of stormwater. It seems like it takes too long in Kitsap County for the legislative process to catch up with science.)
Illegal Logging – Awhile back we noted that someone was logging on the Timbers Edge properties. Evidently this was reported to Kitsap County enforcement, who reportedly contacted Mr. Jim James, who reportedly stated that someone was stealing the timber. Since we took pictures of the logged stumps, we were called on Thursday by KC Enforcement for more information. We were not home when the call came in and will call on Monday to try and see if can give them more information.
Logging or Dump Truck Seen on Fir Drive? Theoretically someone should have seen a logging or dump truck with trees in it on Fir Drive in November or December. We would like to get some more information on this illegal logging so if anyone has any information please contact us.
Eyes in the Woods. Interestingly we just received information from another Illahee resident who thought we and the Illahee Preserve might be interested in a program called EYES IN THE WOODS, a non-profit organization of volunteers who assist the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) in protection and perpetuation of our natural resources. It is similar to the “Neighborhood Watch” program only for forests and public lands, such as we have around here.
Upcoming EYES IN THE WOODS Training Class. The Tacoma Sportsman’s Club is holding training from 7-9 pm on January 27, 2010. For more information contact see the attached pdf file brochure.
Port of Illahee New Meeting Location. We attended the monthly Port of Illahee meeting on Wednesday at their new meeting location, which is 5560 Ocean View Blvd, Bremerton, WA 98311. We asked if we could take a picture, which is attached, and shows from right to left, Commissioner George Schaefer, Commissioner Dennis Sheeran, and newly appointed Commissioner Mike Mantzke. This new location should make it easier for residents to attend the monthly Port meetings, which are at 5 pm the second Wednesday of the month, or for February 10th for next month.
Brown Storm Water in the Bay. Those living along the water have likely noticed the daily brown silt laden water emanating from Illahee Creek this past week. On Friday we watched as a flock of several hundred feeding American mergansers encountered the muddy water. They evidently were unable to see any fish and flew about a third of a mile until they were on the other side of the brown water.
Mussel Sampling Feed Back. We received several emails regarding the mussel sampling and will pass that information on in a later update.
Appeal Information. We like to provide links to articles about Illahee in our local papers. The following linked story is about the Illahee community’s appeal of the Timbers Edge project to Superior Court. We send out our community Updates to the local press and they often call us and when they think they have enough for a story, put one out. We think the papers around here do a very nice job with their stories
Visibility Helping With Donations. One of the benefits of visibility from articles such as the one above, is that some donations are coming in as a result of them. We recently had a $300 donation from a friend who heard about what was happening, and after explaining what the situation was, gave the check to the community to help with the legal expenses. We have been told that donations such as these are needed to continue the appeals
>Response to White-Fronted Goose Report. We are amazed at the responses we often get to our updates, and also where they are read. The attached is an example.