Tag Archive for Puget Sound

Western Washington braces for winter driving conditions

We need help from drivers to keep traffic moving

“Keep your speed down, and maintain your patience,” said Capt. Randy Drake, commander of WSP’s Bellevue District Office. “Traffic is always heavy after a Seahawks game. Don’t let the rush to get home cause you to make a bad decision in heavy traffic.”

Drivers should prepare for cold temperatures, fill up the gas tank and check

road status as WSDOT crews prepare for rain, hail and snow.

Know before you go:

New scholarship from Grays Harbor Community Foundation is biggest ever

Scott Weatherwax was born September 25, 1940 in Aberdeen, Washington, to Marian Abel and Ben K. Weatherwax.  He graduated from J.M. Weatherwax High School in Aberdeen where he was a stand-out in basketball, a varsity baseball pitcher, a member of Honor Society, and ASB President.  He went on to the University of Puget Sound where he was a small-college All American basketball star.  He then attended the University of Washington Dental School, served two years in the U. S. Army, and had a successful career in dentistry in Tacoma.

He retired to Grays Harbor where he became actively involved on the Board of Directors of the Grays Harbor Community Foundation as its Scholarship Committee Chairman, and a member of the Finance Committee and Grants Committee.  His passions were sports, music (he played at least four instruments), and helping improve Grays Harbor through the education of its youth and grants to non-profits.  Dr. Weatherwax died of cardiac arrest while camping and hiking with friends on Vancouver Island, Canada, on May 17th, 2008.

Scott always believed that it was the responsibility of the community to cultivate the leaders of the future.  He understood that a well-educated individual needs exposure to the arts and sports, and that leadership can start young. 


The Grays Harbor Community Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization with a mission “to improve the quality of life in the communities throughout Grays Harbor County.”  This is accomplished through our scholarship program and many projects and processes that work through or are in support of other non-profit organizations, including a quarterly discretionary grants cycle with applications accepted on the first business day of January, April, July and October.


Tax deductible donations may be made to:

Grays Harbor Community Foundation, P.O. Box 615, Hoquiam, WA 98550


You may find out more by checking the foundation website:  www.gh-cf.org or you may contact the Foundation staff at 532-1600 or by e-mail at:  [email protected].

60,000 large rainbow trout stocked on westside, part of WDFW’s “Fall into Fishing”

WDFW’s “Fall into Fishing” promotion is a response to anglers’ requests to increase fall and winter trout fishing opportunities in Western Washington.

“Twenty-four Puget Sound lakes have already been stocked, with more to follow this month,” said Donley. “Then, at the end of this month, Southwest Washington anglers get in on the action with our second-annual ‘Black Friday’ promotion, the culmination of our Fall into Fishing program.” 

Donley said that in the days leading up to Thanksgiving, the department will stock more lakes for Black Friday, including six in Southwest Washington and one each in Jefferson and Mason counties in the Puget Sound region.

“Our Black Friday event offers great opportunities for anyone – including beginners or anglers returning to the sport – to wet a line to catch a stringer of big, hard-fighting trout,” said Donley.

To participate in Fall into Fishing or the Black Friday event in Southwestern Washington, anglers must have a current Washington freshwater fishing license valid through March 31, 2014. Licenses can be purchased online at https://fishhunt.dfw.wa.gov; by telephone at 1-866-246-9453; or at hundreds of license vendors across the state.

For details on license vendor locations, visit the WDFW website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/licensing/vendors/

Anglers parking at WDFW water-access sites are required to display on their vehicle the WDFW Vehicle Access Pass that is provided free with every annual fishing license purchased. The passes are transferable between two vehicles. Anglers who use Washington State Parks or Department of Natural Resource areas need a Discover Pass. For more information on the pass, visithttp://discoverpass.wa.gov/

Before heading out, anglers should check fishing regulations, which are available at license vendors and on WDFW’s webpage athttp://wdfw.wa.gov/fishing/regulations/.

Washington grocers reach tentative agreement in 70th hour

WDFW Commission to consider amending state wildlife interaction rules

During the commission’s regular meeting Oct. 4 in Olympia, commissioners will consider proposed amendments to wildlife interaction rules that are more consistent with Washington’s Wolf Conservation and Management plan and to implement 2013 legislation.

The amendments are available online at http://wdfw.wa.gov/about/regulations/development.html.

Those amendments include:

  • Making permanent an emergency rule that permits ranchers, farmers, and other pet and livestock owners in the eastern third of the state to kill a wolf that is attacking their animals.
  • Adding sheep, goats, swine, donkeys, mules, llamas and alpacas to the list of animals livestock owners could be compensated for if those animals are killed by wolves. The current list only includes cattle, sheep and horses.
  • Permitting state compensation regardless of whether livestock owners were raising the animals for commercial purposes.
  • Compensating livestock owners for their losses at market value.

In other business, the commission will consider two land transactions, and will receive briefings on wolf management activities this summer and updates to Hydraulic Code Rules, which regulate construction around state waterways to protect fish.

State Representative Derek Kilmer urges Congress to avoid shutdown

PORT ANGELES, Wash. – State Representative Derek Kilmer spoke on the floor of the House this morning to urge Congress to stop partisan games and avoid a government shutdown. “As we all know on September 30th the government will run out of funding.”
The Democratic Congressman explained how the shutdown could affect his constituents. “For folks back home on the Olympic Peninsula, and around Puget Sound, a shutdown would have serious consequences. Troops in JBLM and workers of Puget Sound Naval Shipyard could go without pay. Olympic National Park could close to tourists. Senior citizens could be delayed in receiving checks for Social Security, [and] veterans may go without the benefits and care that they have earned.”
Much of the federal government will cease operation in 10 days unless Congress passes new legislation, referred to as a continuing resolution, to keep the lights on.  Meanwhile House republicans are hoping to use the legislation to defund obamacare, with an amendment to prohibit funding to implement the new healthcare law.

Rep. Derek Kilmer Available for One-on-One Discussions during “Conversations with Kilmer” Tour


The schedule for the Conversations with Kilmer Tour follows:


Healthy Forest Field Panel in Port Angeles*

Representative Kilmer will hold a field panel to discuss and receive testimony on collaborative forest harvest agreements.


Friday, August 16, 2013

10:00am – 11:30am


Port Angeles City Hall

321 East 5th Street

Port Angeles, WA

*Open to the public but space is limited.  Please RSVP to [email protected].      


Office Hours in Port Angeles

Friday, August 16, 2013

11:45am – 1:45pm


332 E 5th St

Port Angeles, WA



Jefferson County Farmers Market & Uptown Street Fair

Saturday, August 17, 2013

9:00am – 1:00pm


Lawrence Street

Port Townsend, WA



Bremerton Farmers Market

Sunday, August 18, 2013



Bremerton Ferry Terminal

211 1st St

Bremerton, WA



Puget Sound Caucus Recovery Field Hearing in Tacoma*

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

1:00pm – 3:00pm


Urban Waters

326 E D Street

Tacoma, WA

*Open to the public but space is limited.  Please RSVP to [email protected]



Office Hours in Tacoma

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

8:00am – 10:00am


Knapp’s Restaurant

2707 N Proctor Street

Tacoma, WA  98466



Office Hours in Amanda Park

Thursday, August 22, 2013

1:45pm – 3:45pm


Amanda Park Timberland Library

6118 101

Amanda Park, WA



Kilmer on Your Dock – Bainbridge Island

Friday, August 23, 2013

6:30am – 8:00am


Bainbridge Ferry Terminal

270 Olympic Drive SE

Bainbridge Island



Office Hours in Poulsbo

Friday, August 23, 2013

1:00pm – 3:00pm


Poulsbo City Hall

200 NE Moe St

Poulsbo, WA



Kilmer on Your Dock – Kingston

Friday, August 23, 2013

4:00pm – 6:00pm


Kingston Ferry Terminal

11264 State Route 104

Kingston, WA 98346



Kilmer at the Park – Service Project and Availability at Olympic National Park*

Representative Kilmer will be working along with Olympic National Park Superintendent Sarah Creachbaum in removing exotic weeds on August 24th from 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM along Peabody Creek between the Visitor Center and the Administrative Office. From 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Representative Kilmer will be available to meet with constituents outside the ONP Administrative Office at the picnic tables.


Saturday, August 24, 2013

Service Project (RSVP required*): 10:00am – 1:00pm

Kilmer availability (open to all): 1:00pm – 2:00pm


Meet at picnic tables on the south side of the ONP Administrative Office

300 E. Park

Port Angeles, WA


*Open to the public but there is limited availability to participate in the service project portion.  Please RSVP to Judith Morris at [email protected] or call (360) 797-3623 by August 20, 2013.



For questions about any of these events, please call Representative Kilmer’s office in Tacoma at (253) 272-3515, in Bremerton at (360) 373-9725, or in Port Angeles at (360) 797-3623. 

Celebrate State Parks Centennial with ShellFest event and more at Fort Flagler

Lunch for the event will be provided by Shina Wysocki of Chelsea Farms LLC of Olympia, in partnership with Taylor Shellfish Farms, Shelton. Lunch is free, however, a suggested donation of $5 a person or $15 a family will go to benefit the Washington State Parks Foundation and Friends of Fort Flagler. The Washington State Parks Foundation is a non-profit organization formed specifically to support Washington State Parks by funding park improvements and programs. For more information, visit http://wspf.org or http://flaglerflashes.blogspot.com/ for the Friends of Fort Flagler. 

Other sponsors for the event include the Washington State Department of Health, Washington BEACH Program, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Pacific Shellfish Growers Association, Washington Sea Grant, Pumpout-Don’t Dump Program, Northwest National Wildlife Federation, Washington State University, Jefferson County-Beach Watchers, Jefferson County Marine Resources Committee and Friends of Fort Flagler State Park. 

Shellfish are a significant recreational, commercial, and tribal resource and help to define Washington’s cultural and culinary identity. Event sponsors all have a role in protecting and preserving shellfish through Puget Sound cleanup efforts. 

Evening concert follows ShellFest event

An evening concert featuring Chantilly Lace is scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday, at the Battery Bankhead at Fort Flagler. The band performs oldies rock and roll, rockabilly, country rock, blues and classic rock, with songs spanning 50 years. They also perform original music with a 50s and 60s flavor. Admission to the concert is $8 for adults, free for children under 13. For information about the concert, contact Fort Flagler State Park at 360-385-1259. 

Fort Flagler State Park is a 784-acre marine camping park surrounded on three sides by 19,100 feet of saltwater shoreline. The park rests on a high bluff overlooking Puget Sound, with views of the Olympic and Cascade Mountains. Many historic buildings remain at the site of the military fort, established at the turn of the 20th century. 

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

The commission called for a review of state rules governing the recreational harvest of octopuses in January, following the legal – but controversial – taking of an octopus at Seacrest Cove 2 in late October 2012.

Working with a 12-member citizen advisory committee that included members of the sportfishing and diving communities, WDFW developed options that ranged from making no rule changes to banning the recreational harvest of the octopuses throughout Puget Sound.  The department received hundreds of comments on the management options during and after a pair of public workshops in the spring in Port Townsend and Seattle. 

Craig Burley, WDFW Fish Management Program Manager, said many sportfishers preferred the status quo, while many divers favored a Puget Sound-wide ban. Burley said the octopus population in the Sound appears to be healthy and that the current recreational harvest is very small.

Several commission members said they favored some additional protections in recognition of the broad appeal of the species to recreational divers around the world, and the potential economic benefits of enhancing the reputation of Puget Sound as a premier diving location.

“Washington is an important dive location, and protection of the octopus is important both to the dive community and to the economy of the state,” said Commissioner Conrad Mahnken of Bainbridge Island.  He said Washington state is the fourth most popular dive location in the U.S. and the only northern state in the top 10.

Also on Friday, the commission:

  • Established the 2013-14 hunting seasons for migratory waterfowl.  The general duck season will be open for 107 days – from Oct. 12 through 16 and from Oct. 19 through Jan. 26. A special youth hunting weekend will take place Sept. 21 and 22.  WDFW Wildlife Program staff members said surveys in the Pacific Flyway show duck populations are near long-term averages, while goose populations are generally at or above management goals.
  • Approved seven land acquisitions – five purchases and two conservations easements – for parcels ranging from 1.3 to 191.4 acres in Pacific and Okanogan counties.  Each parcel is either adjacent to existing state wildlife lands or surrounded by other publicly owned land, said WDFW Director Phil Anderson.  The Pacific County acquisitions will help WDFW preserve and restore salmon habitat.  The Okanogan transactions will protect shrub-steppe habitat, mule deer winter range, and migration corridors used by deer, bighorn sheep and other wildlife.
  • Took public testimony on several proposed amendments to wildlife interaction rules that are designed to implement actions by the 2013 Legislature and to ensure the WDFW administrative rules are consistent with the department’s 2011 Wolf Conservation and Management Plan.  The amendments include a proposal that would make permanent an emergency rule adopted earlier this year, which permits ranchers, farmers, and other pet and livestock owners in the eastern third of the state to kill a wolf that is attacking their animals.  The commission will accept written public comments through Friday, Sept. 20, and is scheduled to adopt the regulations later in the fall.

Washington Legislature funds final push to rid Puget Sound of derelict fishing nets


“These legacy nets have been fishing the waters of the Salish Sea for decades,” du Pré said. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to finish the job and to celebrate a true conservation success story in 2015.” Du Pré added that current fishing net loss is minimal and commercial fishers are now required to report any lost nets.


State Rep. Norma Smith of Whidbey Island led the legislative effort to fund the net-removal initiative.


“I am deeply grateful to my colleagues who helped achieve the goal of a $3.5 million appropriation for the Northwest Straits Foundation to remove the last of the legacy nets from the Puget Sound,” Smith said. “Lost in previous decades, they have had a devastating impact on harvestable natural resources and marine life. Once removed, because of the reporting requirements now in place, this challenge comes to an end. What an achievement!”


WDFW Director Phil Anderson said the new funding is specifically designed to support the removal of derelict fishing nets in areas of the Sound where historic fisheries coincide with bottom conditions likely to snag nets. The foundation locates those nets using sidescan sonar surveys, then dispatches recovery vessels with dive teams to retrieve them.


Few efforts have been made to remove nets from depths of more than 105 feet, because of safety concerns. However, the foundation recently completed an assessment of deepwater net-removal strategies that include the use of remotely operated vehicles, grapples, and deepwater divers.


“Working in conjunction with our partners at Northwest Straits and in the State Legislature, we have made enormous strides toward eliminating the risks posed to fish and wildlife by derelict fishing gear,” Anderson said. “This is difficult work, and it requires a real commitment from everyone to get it done. We look forward to celebrating the next milestone in 2015.”