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Public hearing April 28 to form lake management district for Long Lake

Kitsap County commissioners approved a resolution March 24 calling for a public hearing for Long Lake residents in order to form a lake management district that is allowed under state law.

A public hearing is set for Monday, April 28, at 5:30 p.m. in the Commissioners Chamber in the Kitsap County Administrative Building, 619 Division St., Port Orchard.

The lake management district (LMD) is an independent community-based, non-profit special district. The mission of the LMD is to provide for the management and conservation of lake resources for present and future generations.

Approval of the district would first require a public hearing for all property owners within the boundaries of the district (Lake Management District No. 3) for Long Lake. An election by mail of the same property owners would happen later this year.

According to a county report, Long Lake — the largest in Kitsap County — has been suffering for year with significant water quality issues that has fueled in the growth of invasive aquatic plants and toxic algae blooms. The poor water quality is the result of past land-use practices on both shoreline and upland lots, surrounding soil conditions and natural lake processes.

Citizens for Improving Long Lake (CILL) helped the county secure $1 million from the state legislature from 2006 to 2010. CILL and other community groups have worked with the community, county and state for more than 20 years to increase awareness of the lake issue.

CILL, in collaboration with TetraTech, has proposed a 10-year lake management plan to address water quality issues and reduce the growth of invasive aquatic plants and toxic algae blooms.

The plan — which would cost $995,000 for a 10-year period (2014 to 2023), has been reviewed by the Kitsap Health District and other county agencies.

Annual assessment of each property in the district would be $252 for properties with shoreline adjacency, $144 for properties with special access rights to the lake and $50 for properties in close proximity to the lake and its amenities.

According to their website, CILL was formed 11 years ago to reduce the toxic algae and noxious weeds from Long Lake. The group reduced the noxious weeds and the lake clarity has doubled, but the grant money ran out.

“Now that our grant money is gone, the lake is no longer being maintained and we had the largest algae bloom in the history of CILL,” stated the website.

For more information on the group, go online to www.longlakecill.org.

 

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