Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Weigh in on Tumwater’s proposed shoreline master program amendments

Deschutes River at Tumwater Falls Park.
Deschutes River at Tumwater Falls Park.
About 260 cities and counties in Washington develop and use locally-tailored tools to help manage how their local shoreline areas are developed and protected. We work in partnership to approve each municipal shoreline master program (SMP).

In 2014, we approved the city of Tumwater’s set of shoreline policies, regulations, and ordinances during the city’s comprehensive SMP update. Tumwater applies its SMP when development is proposed that could affect shoreline areas adjacent the city’s six lakes, Deschutes River, Percival Creek, or Black Lake drainage ditch.

After review, Tumwater seeks to revise its SMP

Recently, Tumwater conducted a required periodic review to evaluate any changes to local circumstances as well consider new information or data that might be incorporated into is SMP. As a result, Tumwater is seeking to amend its SMP, including folding in the city’s latest wetlands and floodplain regulations.

Public comment period open until March 18

We are now gathering public comment until March 18, 2019, regarding Tumwater’s proposed SMP revisions.

The draft revised SMP documents can be reviewed online while paper copies are available for review by appointment at our regional office in Lacey or at Tumwater city hall. Please see our site for more details, including addresses and contact information.

Submitting comments

All interested parties are invited to provide comment until March 18, 2019, at 5 p.m. We prefer to have public comments sent by email to

Written comments, however, can be submitted by mailing them to:

Sarah Cassal
Washington Department of Ecology
Southwest Regional Office
PO Box 47775
Olympia, Washington 98504-7775

Questions? Please contact Ecology’s Sarah Cassal, 360-407-7459.

Next steps

A summary of comments will be posted a few weeks after the comment period closes March 18. We will also post the Tumwater's response to comments and notice of our decision. We will compare Tumwater's proposed program to state requirements under the Shoreline Management Act and Shoreline Master Program Guidelines.

Based on the comparison, we will decide whether to:
  • Approve the SMP as is.
  • Approve the revised SMP with recommended changes.
  • Send the proposed SMP back to Tumwater with required changes to meet statutory and rule requirements. Recommended changes may be included with any required changes.

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