• Public invited to comment on Regional Transportation Plan

    OLYMPIA – The Peninsula Regional Transportation Planning Organization invites the public to attend any of four public meetings to learn more about a Regional Transportation Plan and to comment on the future vision of transportation for the Olympic and Kitsap peninsulas. 

    The Regional Transportation Plan (12 MB) is designed to promote and guide efficient and sustainable transportation systems on the Olympic and Kitsap peninsulas. It was developed as a shared vision of how strategic transportation planning can create a better future for residents and businesses on the peninsulas. 

    Anyone can participate by visiting one of the following public meetings or by electronically submitting comments by Dec. 31 to Patrick Babineau. The same materials will be presented at all locations. 

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  • Fish and Wildlife Commission extends octopus protections and sets hunting seasons for migratory waterfowl

    OLYMPIA – The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission extended protections for giant Pacific octopuses in Puget Sound today by prohibiting the recreational harvest of the species at seven popular scuba diving sites from Whidbey Island to Tacoma.

    The commission, a nine-member citizen panel appointed by the Governor to set policy for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), also adopted 2013-14 hunting seasons for migratory waterfowl and approved several land acquisitions designed to conserve fish and wildlife habitat during the first day of its Aug. 2-3 meeting in Olympia.

    The commission considered several options for managing the recreational harvest of giant Pacific octopuses before unanimously deciding to prohibit their harvest at Redondo Beach in Des Moines; Three Tree Point in Burien; Seacrest Park Coves 1, 2 and 3 near Alki Point in West Seattle; an area adjacent to the Les Davis Fishing Pier in Tacoma; the Alki Beach Junk Yard in West Seattle; the Days Island Wall in Tacoma; and Deception Pass north of Oak Harbor.  The new rules will take effect this fall.

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  • Biomass Facility Protested in Olympia

    Olympia, WA – On October 25, activists from Olympia Rising Tide hung two banners at the Evergreen State College in opposition to a proposed biomass gasification facility. Olympia Rising Tide opposes biomass because it is a false solution to climate change and would lead to a massive resurgence of clear-cut logging in the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere.

    The Evergreen State College is considering a biomass gasification facility as a replacement for the current natural gas facility that heats the school. The Washington Department of Natural Resources claims that biomass is carbon-neutral because emissions from the gasification process contribute to the already cycling stock of carbon that is being exchanged between the biosphere and the atmosphere as part of the earth’s carbon cycle. Using this logic, even burning coal is carbon-neutral because the emissions contribute to the already cycling stock of carbon.

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  • Grays Harbor County Listed to Receive Grant Funding for Shoreline Policies and Development Regulations

    OLYMPIA – The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) is providing $6.3 million in legislatively approved grants to 70 cities and counties in the Puget Sound region to help modernize their existing shoreline policies and development regulations, also called "shoreline master programs." To view the full list of grants: http://www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/sea/sma/SMPgrants_10012009.pdf


    Shoreline master programs are the cornerstone of the Shoreline Management Act passed by voter referendum in 1972. Under the act, communities develop master programs to guide local decisions about shoreline uses such as ports, ferry terminals, residential neighborhoods, and public access to waterfront areas.

    The local regulations are also designed to protect water quality and critical habitat, control beach and stream bank erosion, and increase flood protection along marine shorelines and shoreline areas around larger lakes and streams.

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  • WSDOT offers trip-planning resources during SR 104 Hood Canal Bridge closure

    Hood Canal Bridge Project getting underwaySHINE – In just two weeks, the way people travel two and from the Olympic Peninsula will temporarily change. The SR 104 Hood Canal Bridge closes for approximately six weeks May 1.  WSDOT wants to remind drivers that the Olympic Peninsula will remain open for business, even though the trip there will take a little longer. WSDOT has developed resources, including a hotline (1-877-595-4222) and a Web site (www.HoodCanalBridge.com), to help travelers know their travel options, The Web site now features videos on how to get around, transit schedules and an interactive online map to plan trips to and from the peninsula. 

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  • Lady Washington, Hawaiian Chieftain Tall ships return to Aberdeen

    ABERDEEN, Wash. – The tall ships Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain have planned a return to Grays Harbor in September for important maintenance projects, and Hawaiian Chieftain will offer opportunities for tours and public excursions. Lady Washington is scheduled to arrive at Seaport Landing September 5, when she’ll undergo a complete electrical refit, including shore power, generators, and new bunk lighting. The Historical Seaport is receiving assistance for the re-power from Scappoose, Ore.-based Cruising Essentials and the American Boat and Yacht Council. The project is scheduled for completion September 30.


    Hawaiian Chieftain will visit Port Townsend for her bi-annual maintenance haul-out Sept. 4-15 at the Port Townsend Shipyard. The ship will then sail for Aberdeen, arriving at Seaport Landing on Sept. 18. After routine U.S. Coast Guard inspections, Hawaiian Chieftain will open for public visits and excursions. 

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  • Lady Washington Seeks Land Lovin Volunteers For Hull Restoration

    ABERDEEN, Wash. – The Historical Seaport has issued a call for volunteers to help with a major restoration of Lady Washington’s hull which will take place over the summer of 2012. On June 14, Lady Washington will go out of service in Aberdeen for approximately eight weeks, starting with the removal of most of her rig. A team of professional shipwrights will then remove portions of Lady Washington’s exterior hull planks above the waterline to expose rot-infected planks and frames. The deterioration is considered normal for a wooden ship of Lady Washington’s age. She was launched in 1989. Damaged frames will be repaired and new planking milled by the Spar Shop at the Seaport Learning Center will be installed.

    To expedite the work, the Historical Seaport needs you and other volunteers at all skill levels. You’re needed on ship projects Monday through Saturday. On Sundays, you can help prepare for the following week’s work and give the public guided tours of the project.

    If you have any time between June 14 and early August, and you plan to be in the Aberdeen area, please call 800-200-5239 or fill out the volunteer form at www.historicalseaport.org

    The hull restoration project is scheduled to pause in early August when work above the waterline is completed. Lady Washington will then sail with Hawaiian Chieftain in Puget Sound through early September, when she’ll head to Port Townsend for her biennial haulout. At that time, shipwrights will replace the vessel’s hull planks below the waterline. The project is financed by a $167,000 capital improvements grant approved by the Legislature in 2011.

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  • Lady Washington & Hawaiian Chieftain Return to Grays Harbor This Month

    ABERDEEN, Wash. – The tall ships Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain return to their home ports of Aberdeen and Westport this month after a successful four-month season of visits to ports in Puget Sound, the San Juan Islands, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. While in Grays Harbor, both ships will offer walk-on tours, three-hour public sailings, and K-12 educational programs.


    The nearly complete summer season included the successful addition of special value-priced Evening Sails on Hawaiian Chieftain or Lady Washington. The ships’ crews proposed the Evening Sails early in the season as a way to increase revenue for the Seaport and offer crew members more sea time. The Historical Seaport introduced the products in July. Both vessels conducted 19 Evening Sails, mostly on Wednesdays and Fridays. (One is scheduled for this evening in Port Angeles. Three are scheduled for next week.) Of all 20 sails through tonight, four were sold out (including tonight’s in Port Angeles), and in eight cases, a second boat was added due to high ticket demand. The Historical Seaport is pleased with the performance of this new product, and the organization is considering the addition of more Evening Sails next summer.

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  • Lady Washington to Arrive Aberdeen Wednesday; Hawaiian Chieftain Delayed

    Aberdeen – The tall ship Lady Washington has set sail from Port Townsend on a three-day voyage to her home port of Aberdeen, Wash. She is scheduled to arrive at Aberdeen Landing, 710 E. Heron St., Aberdeen, on Wednesday afternoon. The exact time of arrival is undetermined.
    Lady Washington will participate in the annual Chehalis Watershed Festival on Saturday, opening up for public tours from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m., followed by a three-hour public sailing at 2 p.m. (Lady Washington will remain at Aberdeen Landing during the festival. Most festival activities are at Morrison Park in Aberdeen.)
    Lady Washington’s companion ship, Hawaiian Chieftain, will remain in Port Townsend undergoing routine maintenance. Hawaiian Chieftain was scheduled to depart Port Townsend today, but she will delay her departure to later this week. The crew is waiting for a replacement part for the starboard propeller assembly, which must be shipped from the manufacturer in Europe. Starting Sept. 22, both ships will  close to the public for further maintenance in preparation for their next activities.
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