Photo by Steve Shay
Tomorrow, Wednesday, July 18, Gov. Chris Gregoire, pictured at a recent Museum of Flight appearance, will tour a series of projects underway to restore and improve the health of the Puget Sound, and will include stops in Burien,

Tomorrow, Wednesday, Gov. Gregoire to tour Burien rain gardens, Seahurst Park restoration project

Press release:

Gov. Chris Gregoire on Wednesday, July 18th, will tour a series of projects underway to restore and improve the health of the Puget Sound. In 2005, when Gregoire created the Puget Sound Partnership, she called for a “swimmable, fishable, diggable” Puget Sound by 2020.

The projects she will be touring are aimed at meeting that goal. Joining Gregoire on the tour will be Chair of the Puget Sound Leadership Council Martha Kongsgard, Bill Ruckelshaus, and the new Executive Director of the Puget Sound Partnership Colonel Tony Wright.

2:30 p.m. “SWIMMABLE”: Gregoire to visit Burien rain garden cluster, tour Seahurst Park restoration project:

Rain garden cluster (From 2:30 p.m. to 2:45 p.m.)
Seahurst Park (From 3:00 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.)

At the Burien stops, Gregoire will visit a nearby neighborhood cluster of eight rain gardens in Burien that was built to prevent polluted runoff from entering Puget Sound, ensuring cleaner water for fish and the public. Following that, Gregoire will make the short trip to Seahurst Park, where more than 1000 feet of bulkhead was removed to improve habitat and provide a public benefit by increasing access to the beach. Gregoire will also visit the newly renovated Environmental Science Center and see high school students learning about Puget Sound, as well as meet families outside enjoying their day on the restored beach.

8 a.m. “FISHABLE”: Gregoire to tour Hood Canal Projects that may be completed with help from the new “In-lieu-fee” mitigation program

This “first-of-its-kind” mitigation alternative for the Hood Canal watershed will initially be used to offset the impacts of construction of the Navy’s new explosives handling wharf, but will have broader impacts within Hood Canal and Puget Sound for meeting county, state, and federal requirements for offsetting development.

Noon “DIGGABLE”: Gregoire to dig for shellfish at Taylor Shellfish, discuss Samish restoration project.

At this stop, Gregoire will join Taylor Shellfish at its “Shellfish-tival,” a community event to teach the public about shellfish and water quality. While there, Gregoire will put on knee-boots and participate in a beach walk, as well as dig for clams and oysters. Following the walk, Gregoire will meet with key players involved in the Clean Samish Initiative – including local elected officials, tribal members, local farmers and shellfish growers. Recently, due to pollution, the Department of Health has had to close a number of shellfish beds in the Samish area. As a critical industry in Washington state, Gregoire wants to make sure progress is moving forward to restore this area, and ensure the shellfish beds remain open.

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