Angel shares land-use specifics with residents of Manchester

A crowd of 50 gathered on Tuesday at Elim Lutheran Church on the outskirts of Manchester to hear Kitsap County Commis-sioner Jan Angel address the Manchester Community Council (MCC) on the county’s latest plan for its land.

Angel spoke on the county’s three-pronged land-use obligations, addressing the ongoing Comprehensive Plan review, the draft Sub-Area Plan the county shares with the City of Port Orchard and the recently passed Critical Areas Ordinance.

Angel described the Comprehensive Plan review as “a grueling process” and “very technical in nature.”

According to the Revised Code of Washington (RCW) as dictated by the Growth Management Act (GMA), a “comprehensive plan” is a “generalized coordinated land use policy statement of the governing body of a county or city.”

A Sub-Area plan is included in the comprehensive plan and is “based upon the growth management population projection,” and requires the county and each city within the county to “include areas and densities sufficient to permit the urban growth that is projected to occur in the county or city for the succeeding twenty-year period, except for those urban growth areas contained totally within a national historical reserve.”

Critical areas are also included in the overall comprehensive plan. “Critical areas” include wetlands, areas with a critical recharging effect on aquifers used for potable water, fish and wildlife habitat conservation areas, frequently flooded areas and geologically hazardous areas.

“It was mostly informational,” said MCC Secretary John Winslow. “There are some specific issues that Manchester residents are concerned about regarding the expansion happening around them and the updating of the Manchester Sub-Area Plan but the process itself is so overwhelming to the average citizen that unless it’s directly impacting them.”

According to Winslow, several residents expressed concern about how the County’s myriad plans impact Manchester’s own Community Plan.

Though the MCC has deemed its document a “Sub-Area” plan, it is not in an Urban Growth Area (UGA) and its plan is considered a “Community Plan.”

Angel said the Manchester Community Plan is not up for review until 2008, though changes that are urgent could be incorporated into the current Comprehensive Plan review.

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