Guemes Island Environmental Trust:

Seawater Intrusion Policy Update

The Skagit Commissioners adopted the Interim Seawater Intrusion Policy by Resolution 15570 in December of 1994. This policy regulates individual water wells on all of Guemes Island. Lorna Parent, staff member of the Skagit County Public Health Department (SCPHD), confirmed that the policy was implemented on January 1, 1995. Their SCPHD staff member on location at the Department of Planning and Development Services is in charge of enforcing the policy.

As many years have passed, the SCPHD recognizes the need to review the seawater intrusion policy and make modifications as necessary. In general, the Health Department staff thinks that the policy has been a good first step in protecting the Guemes Island aquifer system. Input from islanders, who have anecdotes about ways the regulations affected their lives or did not protect their interests, is very welcome, including suggestions for ways to improve the policy.

A copy of the Interim Seawater Intrusion Policy is available here and at the Guemes Island Library.

One can also access the document at www.skagitcounty.net/drinkingwater and select item 6, which offers the update Guemes Island chloride map (below) as well.

I have volunteered to collect your comments and pass them on to SCPHD, so please write a note to eyrie@cnw.com or addressed to me at P.O. Box 541, Anacortes, WA 98221.

--Marianne Kooiman for GIET-Waterworks

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