Comment: If I am reading this correctly, you are suggesting getting out of PenMet, with nothing in place to support the facilities that you are describing (Demolay, Pier)….so those would close until such time that some other organization is put in place? I agree that the communication with PenMet is bad, based on your description. But it seems like a more practical, and timely approach would be to work with them to figure out a solution.
Additionally, I attended a zoom call many months ago where there was a description of what was intended to be done for the Demolay facility, specifically the bulkheads and tidal zones. It seemed like a very complex problem that a bunch of people on the call were working on. How, exactly, would this new Fox Island organization work with these
organizations and update the Demolay facility in and environmentally sound way?
Response: With regard to having “nothing in place,” as we’ve stated in an earlier response, there are multiple options available to us with the three main options being a Fox Island Metropolitan Park District, allowing the FICRA Trust to own and manage the three properties, or form a new entity that will assume those responsibilities. Which option to choose is going to be up to all Fox Islanders and certainly not just our group. We will be holding meetings on these options at some point in the future. Probably at some point once we know we will be before the Boundary Review Board. We presume to have no authority nor do we presume to know what all of us on Fox Island might want going forward. There will be much more on this topic in the future. As for what PenMet might do if we are successful in removing Fox Island, who knows at this point? All we know at this point is that PenMet is opposing our efforts. We’ll let you surmise why. As for working with PenMet, several of us have been communicating with PenMet for over a year now. We’ve been asking for meetings (all, but two of which have been ignored) and for joint tours of the properties so we can point out our concerns while standing on the properties (all of which have been ignored). We’ve asked a few questions to better understand how PenMet operates and how it trains its employees and volunteers, and how it spends its money. In very case we are either ignored or told to file Public Record Requests. We will be providing a detailed update on those PRR’s in the very near future. Working with PenMet is simply not an option. More than a year’s worth of efforts have proven worthless. With respect to your comments about the Zoom meeting you attended, we are very aware of this. The Pierce Conservation District (“PCD”) scheduled three Zoom meetings last year and conducted two of them. The agenda item being discussed was a project to improve, protect, and rehabilitate the DeMolay Sandspit property. There were three options developed by the PCD and several experts were brought in to discuss the habitat, erosion, natural landscaping, fixing or removing the broken down seawall, etc. Only two of the three scheduled Zoom meetings took place. The third meeting never happened. We called a contact at the Pierce Conservation District to ask about the third meeting and the status of the project. We were told the third meeting never took place. We were told that the contact person at PenMet had retired impeding the lines of communication and that a new Executive Director had come on board. We don’t know if that reference was to PenMet’s new Executive Director or to a new Executive Director for the PCD. That said, we were told that the PCD has continued to reach out to PenMet to get this project moving forward, but to date not much has happened—at least that we are aware of. We were also told by PenMet that they felt the PCD turned away from this project and that’s why nothing has happened. Who knows the truth, but there is a kicker to this story: We were told the project being proposed by the PCD was FULLY FUNDED and could be done with no expenditure on PenMet’s part!!