Gov. Inslee releases draft report after Snake River dams stakeholder study

Gov. Inslee releases draft report after Snake River dams stakeholder study
Ice Harbor Dam (Courtesy: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

The draft report of Governor Inslee’s state-funded study on the Snake River dams is now available to the public.

The state legislature provided funding to the governor’s office in the 2019-21 operating budget to fund The Snake River Dams Stakeholder Engagement Report. Lawmakers originally appropriated $750,000 for the stakeholder study, but a spokesperson for Gov. Inslee said they only plan on spending $395,000.

The goal of the study was to understand the views of Washingtonians on breaching and removing, or retaining, the lower Snake River dams. The report is the result of interviews with more than 100 stakeholders, including local, state, tribal and federal figures. Additionally, more than 3,500 people have responded to an online survey.

“I thank all the stakeholders from all over the state for weighing in on this crucial issue. I encourage Washingtonians to get engaged in the public comment period over the next month and share their input on what should be done. We need to hear from a variety of people from different regions and perspectives,” said Governor Inslee in a statement. “I look forward to the public engagement and to working in partnership with the federal government going forward.”

The draft report is available for public comment until January 24, 2020. To read the report, click here.

Additionally, public workshops will be held throughout Washington state to present the report findings and offer a panel discussion. Audience members may submit written questions that can be asked of the consultants and panel, provided time is available.

The Tri-Cities workshop is being held on January 13 at the Red Lion Hotel & Conference Center in Pasco from 6 to 9 p.m.