How could she be so confused? Just because various maps conflict, the opinions of different experts conflict, and her personal experiences and historical uses of her property conflict with the current "possible" designations? Is that all?
Under the new CAO, after she sorts all that out and "knows" where the wetland boundary is, all she has to do is apply the buffer. What could be easier? Looks like some of Miller's wetlands might be associated with streams. Just follow the simple steps in the proposed CAO. Here are a couple of steps excerpted from the Fish & Wildlife Habitat CAO.
Step 3. Determine the width of the water quality-sensitivity buffer using the procedures in SJCC 18.30.150 (Wetlands) and Table 3.6 for 70% pollutant removal and either the normal development or the green development option). The water quality-sensitivity buffer extends landward horizontally from the bank full width of streams (as defined in WAC 222-16-010), and the OHWM for lakes, ponds, and marine shorelines.
Step 7. Buffers, Tree Protection Zones, and Existing Development. Where structures or impervious areas, legally established prior to the effective date of these regulations, encroach into a required buffer or tree protection zone, the buffer or zone shall be modified to exclude the footprint of those structures and impervious areas. Buffers and tree protection zones shall not extend across public roads. For private roads, buffers and tree protection zones shall not extend across the road when the road design, flow of runoff, quantity of traffic, and/or gap in tree canopy result in an area that does not support functions and values of the FWHCA to be protected, as determined by a qualified professional. Structures, roads and impervious areas may be modified, replaced, relocated, or expanded within the development area existing on the effective date of these regulations, in conformance with the procedures and requirements of SJCC 18.30.110.G.And there are 53 pages that read just like that in only the Fish & Wildlife CAO alone ... full of more steps, flowcharts, definitions, and rules. It reads like the demented science-wannabe stream-of-consciousness ramblings of an OCD über-bureaucrat working for the nanny-state from hell.
Environmental protection? I think not. Something else is going on, and it's very very wrong.
It's a matter of time before every one of us gets wrapped up in the same eco-Gordian Knot. Miller's situation isn't so much about Schadenfreude; it isn't gloating; it isn't Vivien Burnett. But it should be a demonstration that all of us will get caught up in this mess, and I don't know why Miller or any other Council person supports the track we're on.
Do I think Miller is killing the planet or doing any serious harm? No, she probably isn't. She might even escape the regulatory red-tape nightmare, but most of the rest of us won't. Of those of us that are caught, only a few will be able to afford the time and money to persevere through the red tape tangle. People will, and are, turning on one another, and the same people who talk longingly about civility are the ones undermining it with their support for unjust, punishing, eco-pointless laws. And our community way of life is paying the price.
Patty Miller ... other Councillors who support this fiasco ... this is your life ... and legacy.