PROPOSED PARK UPDATE
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STATUS REPORT FROM WHITEWATER PARK 12-18-15 LMS

Brianne Westfall of the Whitewater Park Association answered questions from Salmon City Council members at the December 17 council meeting.

She was invited to the meeting to present an update on the status of the associationís efforts toward obtaining the necessary permits to build the proposed Whitewater Kayak Park. She said that having to defend the park proposal from the Proposition 1 ballot initiative has substantially drained the organizationís coffers which will have to be replenished before the next steps can commence. Funds are being raised by way of calendars for sale at the Odd Fellows Bakery and proceeds from the annual New Yearís Eve film fest by ďThe Winter Wildlands Alliance.Ē

Westfall said talks with the six agencies involved in the permitting are continuing and that they do have a 60 percent design engineering plan. She explained that in engineering terms there are 10 percent, 30 percent 60 percent and 90 percent drawings. The 60 percent stage is when Army Corps of Engineers comments could begin however the association is still working with engineers and tweaking the preliminary plans. When the plans satisfy the association and the engineers they will be presented to the council for its input. Engineers for the project gave a public meeting presentation on the 60 percent drawings just before the November election and answered questions concerning the project.

The association has not actually applied for any permits yet. Westfall said grant applications for funding to build the actual park will be submitted in January. Once funds are in hand they can begin to apply for permits.

Council President Jim Baker said he feels monthly updates to the council are imperative and said he expects the council to have a say on how public input will be handled.

Westfall agreed to the monthly updates up until May when association members go in all directions with their Summer occupations. She encouraged council members to call anytime if they have questions. As to further public comment opportunities she said that will be up to the Army Corps of Engineers based on what kind of permit is delegated to the project. She said there are various kinds of permits and they wonít know which permit rules will be applied until the permit is in hand.

In answer to council concerns over wanting to be involved in the process Westfall said the city will have to sign off on the permits before they are submitted. She said, again depending on what kind of permit is designated, if there is a pre-permit submission meeting with a formal venue that would be where the city could offer some prepared comments. Baker asked that a discussion be held at the next council meeting on how to handle putting the comments together.

The councilís next meeting will be January 6, 2016.


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