I received this update from Chelan County Natural Resources on last month's meeting on Large Woody Debris mitigation requirements on Lake Chelan:
On Dec 16, 2009 a meeting of the Large Woody Debris (LWD) Forum took place. Meeting attendees included US Corps of Engineers, WDFW, DNR, Lake Chelan Sailing Association, City of Chelan, Chelan County Natural Resource Dept, Chelan County Commission and Chelan Chamber of Commerce.
The focus of the meeting was to discuss the short-term and long-term goals of the Forum.
- Project development for mitigation options - Development of a pilot project to determine the most effective and appropriate mitigation actions.
- Dr. Mark Lorang from Flathead Lake Biological Station has agreed to provide some conceptual designs for the mitigation pilot project.
- Erlandsen & Associates have offered to do some pro-bono survey work for the pilot project.
- The Lake Chelan Reclamation District owns 1300 ft of shoreline near Manson and has offered to allow the project to be built at that location.
- Funding will be sought for the pilot project. Funding may be available through a Fee-in-lieu program (see below)
- The permitting agencies agree that a fee-in-lieu program would be very appropriate for mitigation requirements in Lake Chelan. The program would work by allowing a fee to be paid to the program instead of having to implement the mitigation requirements. As the program accumulates funds mitigation actions would be developed and once the program has enough funds the mitigation actions would be implemented.
- Chelan County Natural Resource Department (CCNRD) has offered to establish and manage the Fee-In-Lieu Program.
- CCNRD will meet with the US Corps of Engineers and WDFW to discuss the details and requirements of the Fee-In-Lieu Program.
The long-term goals of the Forum are as follows:
- Coordinate the planning for restoration and mitigation actions.
- Develop a scope of work, timeline and define roles for the Forum and its members.
At the earlier meetings where experts marine biologists were brought in, their opinion was that most private docks on Lake Chelan had no detrimental impact on fish. Therefore, since mitigation is only required to mitigate impacts, if there is no impact, no mitigation should be required.
I have asked Chelan County Natural Resources if it is their intention to require the "Fee-In-Lieu" program on private docks, which likely have no impacts on wildlife. I will let you know their response.