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Parks board approves biosolids project

After a brief presentation by Karcher General Manager Dick Fitzwater at a well-attended meeting Wednesday night, the South Kitsap Parks and Recreation Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to allow the sewer district a space in the park to conduct a pilot study on the effectiveness of biosolids and reuse water in fertilization and lawn irrigation.

According to Fitzwater, the Class A biosolids would be transported from the Tacoma wastewater treatment facility to the park in a standard dump truck for a one-time application on a section of lawn near the batting cages.

The treatment facility shared by Karcher and the city of Port Or-chard is not yet capable of producing Class A biosolids.

A simple irrigation system will water the grass once a day with re-use water, gradually watering less and less as the grass gets greener.

Signs informing the public of the project will be posted; the study will continue through October.

When asked how long it would take for the park’s brown lawn to turn green, Fitzwater smiled and replied, “three to four weeks, if we do it right.”

With a budget of $3,000, Karcher employees will purchase the biosolids from the Tacoma plant, as well as a tank and filter system for the water, a pup for the irrigation system and a hundred dollars worth of pipe, as well as funding the transportation equipment.

Sewer District Commissioner Bill Huntington also attended the meeting and spoke to the board.

“We really want to see this park go (far),” Huntington said. “I think we could (develop) something good (that would) benefit the community.”

Commissioners approved the project with the condition that Walker would have to discuss it with nearby tenets using adjacent land, but he said he expected there would be no problem.

When asked when he could begin to implement the project, Fitzwater said “as soon as (Walker) gives me the word.”

Commissioner Huntington also extended an invitation to the Board to use the new administrative building Karcher shares with Annapolis for its meetings. The Lund Avenue location is convenient and the conference room is state-of-the-art. Commissioners enthusiastically accepted and all future meetings will be held in the District’s conference room.

In other board actions:

• The board authorized the Port Orchard Lion’s Club to begin a community service project that would beautify the park’s sign at the intersection of Jackson and Lund.

• The board entertained discussion regarding the safety hazard of dead trees in the park and promised to look into the felling of dangerous trees.

• Several new faces turned out to support Chuck Jeu’s community center, a project the board decided would not go on the upcoming ballot because not enough money was made to support it.

• Commissioners informed those attending the meeting that the Rotary had cancelled meeting with commissioners on two separate occasions when commissioners approached the Rotary to brainstorm about future park projects and the subsequent funding.

• The Board was also updated on Folk Fest preparations and the meeting was turned over to John Palo, the commissioner in charge of the park’s master plan. Palo explained the importance of a process-oriented master plan.

“The park has lost out on a lot of stuff because we weren’t flexible,” Palo said. “The park needs a set in stone way of doing business regardless of who the commissioners are.”

Palo will start leading weekly meetings to develop the master plan’s evaluation process at 6:30 p.m. in South Kitsap Community Park near the mobile. The next regularly scheduled Board meeting is Thursday, Aug. 12 at 6:30 p.m. in the Sewer District’s administration building off Lund Avenue.

For more information on the upcoming pilot project, biosolids and the wastewater treatment facility visit http://www.portorchardindependent.com.

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