Department of Ecology News Release - June 1, 2016

Protecting 500 miles of shoreline in Whitman County
Comments sought on six shoreline programs

COLFAX – In and effort to preserve and protect more than 500 miles of shoreline along rivers and lakes in Whitman County, several cities and towns joined the county to update their shoreline programs.

Albion, Colfax, Palouse, Tekoa, Rosalia and Whitman County participated in a regional planning process to update their shoreline programs. They individually submitted their updated programs to the Washington Department of Ecology, which is now making them available for public review and comment.

Each of the cities and towns shared environmental studies and an inventory of current shoreline conditions with the county. The communities’ then tailored portions of their individual shoreline programs to meet local needs.

These shoreline programs will guide construction and development along shorelines, including major portions of the Palouse and Snake rivers and Rock Lake.

Once approved by Ecology, the shoreline programs will become part of the overall state shoreline master program.

Each shoreline program is designed to help minimize environmental damage to shoreline areas, reserve appropriate areas for water-oriented uses, and protect people’s access to public land and waters.

Ecology is accepting comments on the following shoreline programs this summer:

The city of Pullman and the town of Malden also were part of the regional update and will submit locally adopted programs for state review later this year.

Comments and questions should be addressed to Zachary Meyer, Department of Ecology, Shorelands and Environmental Assistance Program, 1250 West Alder St., Union Gap, WA 98903, or by email to  

Documents are available for review online, at Ecology’s Central Region Office, and at each jurisdiction’s planning office.

After taking public comments into consideration, Ecology may approve proposed shoreline programs as written, reject them, or identify specific modifications to meet the Shoreline Management Act and applicable state regulations.


Brook Beeler, communications, 509-328-3478; @ecyspokane