Meetings begin process to develop shoreline plan

As part of an effort to define future shoreline strategy, the Kitsap County Department of Community Development is hosting a series of meetings to determine a policy and recruit volunteers to implement that direction.

“As we begin to kick off this outreach effort to the citizens, we are looking to involve all stakeholder groups,” DCD Manager of Environmental Programs Patty Charnas said. “This is a long process that will benefit from input from all members of the community.”

Charnas quantified the county’s distinction as a maritime area, breaking down the 230 miles of shoreline as 186 miles of salt water, 34 miles of lake and 10 miles of stream.

Four of the five DCD presentations planned — in Kingston, Keyport, Silverdale and Seabeck — have already taken place.

The final meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Oct. 5 at the county administration building in Port Orchard.

Charnas said the meetings have drawn respectable turnouts, although she is hoping for more attendees.

She said attendees with a passion for shoreline management will be able to volunteer in their area of interest.

“People have different concerns,” Charnas said. “We will create groups to examine specific topics. Depending on interest, we could have as many as 20 of these groups.”

The process will take about two years to complete, at which time the plan will be submitted to the Department of Ecology for approval.

Charnas said proper shoreline management will shape the region for years to come. She added a generous state budget line item underscores its importance.

“The Legislature set aside $650,000 this year to make sure this got done,” she said. “With all the budget cuts, it’s significant that they still allocated these funds.”

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