Elodea Task Force
Clark's Creek Elodea Task Force
Excessive native elodea growth within the lower reaches of Clark's Creek has contributed to problems in and around the creek for at least 20 years. The 2012 mechanical harvesting of the elodea was the last under the current Hydraulic Project Approval from Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, as well as the last under the City’s Conditional Use Permit. The City must apply for a new HPA and Conditional Use Permit prior to any in-stream work in 2013.
To examine the past elodea management practices and determine a course of action for the future as we developed a solution for the long term that may effectively reduce the overall presence of elodea, a Task Force made up of City staff, local citizens, regulatory representatives, and other affected organizations was created. The Task Force met in late 2012, and focused various workshops on discussions of the problem(s), the effects of the excessive elodea growth, possible solutions, and ways to achieve them with a sustainable long term plan for elodea management.
Task Force Process & Results
During the final Task Force Workshop (#3, Select Solutions) the group members evaluated the proposed solutions using the decision criteria, and categorizing each solution as long- or short-term. The final product, a guiding document to be used by the City and County as the planning and permitting process begins for the 2013 season, outlines for the group the solutions selected, and provides an overview of the short- and long-term plans.
Task Force members that participated in the process have all been invited to sign the Short and Long Term Solutions Memorandum. This memo allows the stakeholders to express their support for the solutions selected.
The final documents created from this process include an exhibit to the Solutions Memorandum that identifies the selected alternatives for both the short term (2013 in-stream work window) and long term as well as a proposed implementation schedule. With this document as a guide, the City of Puyallup will present the plan to City Council for approval in January 2013, and then move forward quickly with permitting, planning, and contracting activities to prepare for the 2013 Elodea Management and beyond.
Task Force Background
The Task Force meetings were led by a facilitator to ensure focus on the issues, guiding the group to find a sustainable solution. Members included citizens, regulatory agencies, local organizations, general public, City staff and City Council as well as a steering committee to help compile ideas presented during the workshops, research information requested by the groups, and help keep the process on-schedule.
All Task Force members - as well as the public - were invited to attend the October-December 2012 meetings held at City Hall.
Photos of the "idea boards" used in the meetings as well and supporting documents and reference papers were posted to the project web page throughout the process.
Task Force Members
|A-Steering Committee||Bill Sullivan, Mark Palmer, Joy Rodriguez, Chris Beale, Gina Piazza, Tony Fantello, Jenny Wu, Cindy James|
|B - Puyallup Tribe of Indians, Wa Department of Fish and Wildlife, EPA, WA Department of Ecology, WSU-Puyallup, Pierce Conservation District, USGS||Char Naylor, Bill Sullivan, Russ Ladley, Gina Piazza, Steve Kalinowski, Heather Bartlett, Cindy James, Stephanie Brock, TanyaLee Erwin, Laurie Larson, Mark Savoca, Jenny Wu, Melissa Buckingham|
|C - City of Puyallup staff and City Council, Pierce County, Legislative representatives||Mark Palmer, Joy Rodriguez, Chris Beale, Steve Vermillion, John Palmer, Tony Fantello, Sarah Motsenbocker, Jim Kastama, Hans Zieger, Bruce Dammier|
|D - City of Puyallup Citizens||Georgia Prossick, Dan Anderson, Steve Hastings, Liz Engle, Laura Johannes, Ann Coon|
|E - General Public||General Public|
Shared Documents, Papers & Diagrams
Below are documents that have been shared during workshops or provided in response to requests for information to support the project. Please also see links in the righthand column for past meeting notes.
- Shade Analysis Study (PDF), provides analysis of existing shade cover to Clark's Creek, and implications to creek; outlines necessary shade cover (85%) to provide adequate positive impact to creek to suppression the growth of elodea
- 1990-2011 Summary of Elodea mechanical cutting operations (PDF)
- Elodea cycle diagram (PDF) - shows the contributing factors to elodea, how it impacts the creek, and the overall cycle of growth
- 2011 Letters from Puyallup Tribe (PDF), outlining changes to allowable in-stream dates, and comments on methods of mechanical elodea cutting and harvesting
- Puyallup Tribe Land Claims Settlement (PDF)
- KCM Dredging Study (PDF), 1998 report reviewing Clark's Creek, modeling results, design constraints, cost estimate, regulatory strategies and requirements, alternative flood control strategies, and conclusions.
- Aquatic Plants and Fish (PDF), HPA pamphlet developed by Fish and Wildlife providing direction and giving ability to property owners for limited actions along a 10-foot length of their shoreline
- Thurston County Elodea Project Brochure (PDF), Thurston County brochure on Elodea diver hand-removal project
- Thurston County Elodea Removal Report (PDF), Report outlining the effectiveness and successful diver hand-removal project of invasive, Brazilian elodea
- Ecology Diver Dredging Document (PDF), Document by WA Department of Ecology discussing diver dredging (hand-removal) as a management technique
- Stormwater Sampling in Clark's Creek (PDF), 2012 report by Puyallup Tribe of Indians providing data on oxygen-demanding sources affecting Clark's Creek
- USGS 2010 report: Hydrogeologic Framework Groundwater Movement, and Water Budget (PDF), USGS report and data showing groundwater discharge to the creek for various locations (table 5 in report)
- USGS hydrograph data for modeling (PDF), background data used in modeling report and analysis for Clark's Creek
- USGS 2011 report: Numerical Simulation of Groundwater-Flow System (PDF), report analyzing groundwater data and flow in Clark's Creek basin
- Sediment Source Maps (PDF), Provided by Puyallup Tribe from draft sedimentation study report. These maps show the sources and areas contributing to the 750 tons of sediment entering Clark's Creek each year.
- Sediment Summary Graphs (PDF), Provided by Puyallup Tribe from draft sedimentation study report. These graphs summarize the sediment sources in Clark's Creek. Also included is a list of 21 identified projects that could address the sedimentation.