By State Law, A Public Hearing Was Required Before the 2011 Anacortes Water System Plan Was Adopted

by Tom Glade Thursday, February 28, 2013 9:03 PM
I presented the following comments to the Anacortes City Council both verbally at the Citizens Hearings portion of the February 18 City Council meeting and in a letter to the City Council dated February 25. In general my comments (my spoken comments are emphasized) were as follows: Good evening,- My name is Tom Glade, and I reside at 210 Mansfield Ct, Anacortes.  I’m speaking this evening on the behalf of Evergreen Islands. I’d like to read you some direct quotes from Washington state and City of Anacortes official documents.  I’ll be brief and I ask the Council to allow me the courtesy of speaking freely without interruption.  The laws[1] of Washington State requires the following: After preparing the comprehensive plan, or successive parts thereof, as the case may be, the planning agency shall hold at least one public hearing on the comprehensive plan or successive part. Notice of the time, place, and purpose of such public hearing shall be given as provided by ordinance and including at least one publication in a newspaper of general circulation delivered in the code city and in the official gazette, if any, of the code city, at least ten days prior to the date of the hearing. Continued hearings may be held at the discretion of the planning agency but no additional notices need be published. More...



Tethys Bottling Plant: Anacortes Proposes UGA Expansion – Part 5

by Tom Glade Sunday, September 9, 2012 11:29 PM
This post is the fifth installment of a series on the City of Anacortes’s problematic application to expand its urban growth area (UGA).  While the UGA Expansion will adversely impact the environments of Padilla Bay and Turners Bay, this post addresses only the “likely significant adverse impacts” of the UGA Expansion on the March’s Point Heronry and Padilla Bay. When Skagit County considers the City of Anacortes’s UGA Expansion application, the County’s SEPA decision-maker must realize that, for a project of this size and scope, a Determination of Significance is required.  The County must insist on an extensive Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) – a statement which addresses the significant adverse impacts that the UGA expansion will have not only on Skagit County but also on the rest of the state as well. Photo credit: Jon More...

Anacortes UGA Commercial/Industrial Expansion Is Limited to 2 Acres

by Ross Barnes Friday, August 31, 2012 3:09 AM
From Ross Barnes To: Brad Adams; Brian Geer; Eric Johnson; Erica Pickett; Cynthia Richardson; Bill Turner; Ryan Walters CC: Ryan Larsen Subject: Anacortes' UGA C/I Expansion Limited to 2 Acres Date: Fri, 31 Aug 2012 03:09:02 -0600 Dear Council Members,  The UGA expansion application proposes to convert the Samish owned 14.69 acre parcel from industrial to commercial zoning and "free up" an additional 14.69 acres to accommodate the proposed 11.15 acre UGA expansion.  However, this rezone proposal appears to be unaware of the process of allocating commercial/industrial (C/I) acreage under GMA in Skagit County.  Anacortes received an allotment of new commercial/industrial acreage as a combined number and Anacortes is free to zone it either commercial or industrial or change the zoning, but changing the zoning does not increase the combined allotment (see August 24, 2012, Email from Gary Christensen attached below).  Anacortes has 2 acres of their current allotment left for UGA expansion of C/I acreage, and rezoning the Samish property does not change that number.  In a recent Email to Tethys and Ryan Larsen, Skagit County Planning Dept. Manager Gary Christensen wrote: "The most recent Anacortes UGA modification (2003) utilized all but 2 acres of their allocated commercial/industrial acreage.  Post requests to add additional commercial/industrial acreage to the Anacortes UGA have failed.  Any request for commercial/industrial acreage beyond the banked 2 acres would be denied as well." (see attached May 24, 2012, Email below).  Perhaps the Samish parcel could be formally removed from the Anacortes UGA, thus freeing up the 14.69 acres for UGA expansion.  However, the current UGA expansion application makes no such proposal, merely mentioning a speculative transition to federal trust status at some time in the indefinite future.  Also, the UGA expansion application discusses loss of 6.5 jobs per acre on the industrially zoned Samish property, which is the standard jobs factor for urban industrial land as used in Skagit County GMA planning. However, the application fails to mention that rezoning to commercial will actually increase the potential jobs on the property to 20 per acre, which is the standard jobs factor for urban commercial land as used in Skagit County GMA planning.  And that increased jobs potential will remain in Anacortes' UGA for the indefinite future.  SCC 14.08.020 (5) says that "each UGA boundary may be considered for modification once in every 7-year period...."  Depending on the specific timing and action of the Board of County Commissioners, negative County action on this application may preclude Anacortes from timely submission of a new and (hopefully) much improved UGA expansion proposal--a proposal much more responsive to the specifications of County code and GMA process, and far more accommodating of the needs of Tethys as clearly demonstrated in the Tethys site plan which spills far beyond the proposed UGA.  Ross O. Barnes PS.  Both the "silent" and "vocal" portions of the majority of area residents expect the City to deliver on your promises of numerous good jobs at the end of the Tethys site planning process.  If that delivery is thwarted because you insist on forwarding a seriously flawed UGA expansion proposal for County review, why should that majority not consider your actions a betrayal of public trust?  More...



My Comments to the City of Anacortes Regarding Its UGA Extension Application

by Ross Barnes Monday, August 20, 2012 6:46 AM
(Since Dr. Barnes’s comments are technical, the editor has added brief headings have been included to aid the reader.  The additional headings are bold text enclosed in parentheses.) TO: Mayor Dean Maxwell, Anacortes City Council COMMENTS ON ANACORTES' 7/31/12 UGA EXPANSION APPLICATION INCORPORATING TETHYS' DEVELOPMENT PROPOSAL - 8/20/12 (Tongue in Cheek) Once again I applaud Mayor Maxwell and the Anacortes Chamber of Commerce for seeking good wage jobs for Anacortes.  I urge the Council to move this application on to the county where I am sure it will receive the attention and action it deserves.  I have a few observations and questions that if considered may make this application even more deserving.  (Note: all references to Skagit County Code SCC 14.08.020 and 14.16.170 (7)(e)can be found in Appendix D) More...

Tethys Bottling Plant: Anacortes Proposes UGA Expansion – Part 4

by Tom Glade Sunday, August 19, 2012 10:54 PM
This post is the fourth installment of a series on the City of Anacortes’s problematic application to expand its urban growth area (UGA). This post touches on the enormous size of a 5 million-gallon-a-day (MGD) bottling facility, the economic impacts and transportation nightmares resulting from a development on this scale. Comprehending the Scale of Bottling 5 Million Gallons of Water In his September 2010 e-mail to Phil Bastien, a Tethys Enterprises, Steve Winter, another Tethys Enterprises principal, Mr. Bastien conveyed his concerns regarding the Anacortes/Tethys Water Service Agreement’s requirement that ” The water is treated and packaged on the Property in units or containers of a size no greater than ten (10) gallons.” In his e-mail, Mr. Bastien, in an effort to illustrate the scale, writes (emphasis added), Once again the scope of what is required to use 5 MGD is not understood by those who think up the possible loopholes to restrictions on container size when proposing packaging restrictions. To use 10 gallon bags and consume the 5 MGD of water we have available, it would require 500,000 bags per day. That's 20,833 bags per hour or 347 bags per minute or 6 per second assuming a 24 hour day with no breaks. You can't do that with a garden hose or even a fire hose and a couple of guys. It would require a specialized high speed line that doesn't exist and specialized material handling equipment to manage basically body bags of water weighing 80 pounds. No standard pallet or other transport system could be used so special containers would have to be created at hug cost and be returnable to be practical. It would take over 670 rail cars every day on 7 miles of track to ship the 40 million pounds of water in 10 gallon bags. That means you would need over a weeks' worth of shipping packages in stock, stored in a monstrous warehouse or on 4,700 rail cards in a yard requiring 47 miles of track. Then, on the other end, they would have to figure out how to manage 500,000 eighty pound bags of water and return the containers within a few days. More...

Tethys Bottling Plant: Anacortes Proposes UGA Expansion - Part 3

by Tom Glade Thursday, August 16, 2012 5:32 PM
This post is the third installment of a series on the City of Anacortes’s problematic application to expand its urban growth area (UGA).  This e-mail continues the illustration of the significant disparity between the proposed UGA site and the site that the bottling plant actually requires. Finding a Site for the Tethys Bottling Plant On July 31, the City of Anacortes submitted an application (the Application) to amend the Skagit County comprehensive plan to change the Anacortes urban growth area boundary.  In the application, the City proposes an amendment to the Anacortes Comprehensive Plan that would add 11.15 acres to the Anacortes UGA (see map below).  As proposed, this rezoned land would serve as the site for the Tethys bottling plant facility (Tethys has a contract with the City for 5 million gallons of water a day (mgd) from the Skagit River.) More...

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