Letter from Bob Everitt, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

Letter from Bob Everitt, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

This was Mr. Everitt’s response to a letter from Dave Hallock of March 23, 2015

Dear Mr. Hallock,

Thank you for your March 23, 2015 message regarding the Barnaby Reach Project and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s (WDFW) participation in that project. As you noted, WDFW has concurred with the finding of alternative 4 as the preferred alternative for the Barnaby project. This concurrence is based on information that shows that this alternative provides the greatest habitat benefit of all the alternatives considered. As stated in our letter in support of the chosen alternative, WDFW has committed to the design phase of the project (see attached). This does not mean that we have also committed or approved the construction of any of the identified alternatives including alternative 4. While the next steps will seek to develop a design for alternative 4, designs for alternatives 1, 2, & 3 will be developed as well, since the components of each of these alternatives are also included in alternative 4.

Public participation, especially of those living near Barnaby Slough, is very important to the development of this project. We will not proceed with any alternative without concurrence from our stakeholders including the landowners in and around the project site. During the initial feasibility phase the project steering committee held two open public meetings, two smaller landowner meetings, and attempted to contact each of the landowners individually. While the intention was to keep neighbors well informed, it has become clear that more engagement of project stakeholders is necessary. One of the initial tasks of the next phase of the project will be to create a stakeholder group to ensure that the landowners are engaged in, and well informed, during the development of the project design.

Flood risk to the lands surrounding the project area is of concern. Since the drafting of the initial feasibility report we have been engaged in a more comprehensive study of flood risk, specifically looking into the flood effects to the properties surrounding the project site. Initial results of this work are encouraging and a report will be available soon on the project website: (https://barnabystudy.wordpress.com/).

I encourage you to stay engaged during the design phase of this project via the project website, stakeholder meetings, and public meetings. If you have any specific questions, additional concerns, or seek more information about this project, please contact WDFW’s steering committee representative, Bob Warinner. Bob can be reached by phone (360.466.4345 ext. 252) or email (robert.warinner@dfw.wa.gov).

Sincerely,

Bob Everitt, Regional Director
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
16018 Mill Creek Blvd.
Mill Creek, WA 98012
425-775-1311

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