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[Portal ID #1973]

Grays Harbor County - Lower Satsop Planning, Visioning, and Priority Setting Project

Summary of the project

The Lower Satsop River (Lower Satsop) is a dynamic system where river bank erosion, channel migration, and flooding are impacting adjacent properties. A series of projects have been proposed and evaluated in recent years to address these impacts. However, the proposed projects have not been able to reconcile the different interests of the multiple stakeholders in the watershed. Grays Harbor County (County) has taken on a role as a convener to facilitate a collaborative planning effort to engage stakeholders in the Lower Satsop. The County’s objective as convener is to co-create a long-term vision for the floodplain with clear and accountable short-term and long-term actions. This vision will include a plan of action that will identify specific projects and their sequence, timeline, and funding.

The previous Lower Satsop projects have included a number of technical studies of habitat, hydrology, and geomorphology. They have also included a number of community meetings to discuss proposed projects. The action plan will build on these previous efforts and avoid duplication. The County has recognized the need for and difficultly of building consensus among diverse stakeholders on a shared, long-term vision and a framework for making decisions. The fundamental building blocks for a successful, long-term, collaborative effort to make positive change are:

  • Agreement on the key issues including the physical dynamics of the system, and the community, economic, and natural resource concerns at stake
  • Confidence in a planning framework that will be fair and consider all interests
  • Shared vision on what a better future would entail
  • Support for a decision-making framework to evaluate proposed on-the-ground projects and policies relative to key issues, vision, and priorities of the community

Project Process and Timeline

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