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Department of State Lands E-News
Spring 2010

 


Outstanding projects recognized by Land Board
State Land Board Awards
Annual awards honor stewardship, partnerships
 
At their April 13 meeting, the State Land Board presented four awards to Oregon organizations and individuals for their exemplary work. The Land Board Awards recognize responsible, sustainable stewardship of Oregon’s natural resources, as well as partnerships that advance the work of the board.
 
2009 Stream Project
Upper John Day Watershed Restoration Program, a multi-year project to replace push-up dams which impede fish passage in the John Day River in north-central Oregon. The 100th replacement was completed in 2009.
2009 Wetland Projects
  1. Neitzel Farm Habitat Restoration, which turned a small, family-owned farm near Seaside into active wetlands and habitat for salmon and other wildlife.
  2. Munger Farm Restoration, a project that restored approximately 40 acres of wetlands on land adjacent to the Tualatin River near Sherwood, purchased with Metro's voter-approved 1995 open-spaces bond measure.
2009 Partnership Award
Deschutes County Juvenile Community Justice Department for providing trash cleanup on state lands in the county since 2007.
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New faces at DSL
Department of State Lands headquarters
Retirements and departures impact several programs
 
On May 3, Jim Paul joined the Land Management Division as the new assistant director, replacing long-time manager Steve Purchase who retired in December. Jim comes from the Oregon Department of Forestry where he served most recently as chief of the Private Forests Program. At DSL, he oversees a staff of 23 full-time employees in the western and eastern regions.
 
Kevin Moynahan, who served for four years as the assistant director of the Wetlands and Waterways Conservation Division, recently left DSL to take a similar job with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. We're currently in the process of replacing Kevin, and Janet Morlan, wetlands manager, has been filling in as acting assistant director.
 
Other permanent new staff that have joined us recently include:
 
Land Management
  • John Russell, asset manager
  • Lanny Quackenbush, eastern region manager
  • Scott Juul, property specialist
  • Gary Curtis, archaeologist
Wetlands and Waterways
  • Charles Redon, natural resource coordinator (northern region)
  • Melody Rudenko, natural resource coordinator (southern region)
  • Don Waldo, GIS coordinator
  • Louwellyn Jones, resource coordinator assistant
Mylisa Holland joined the department in January as the new human resources manager.
 
For a complete staff list, visit the DSL Web site.

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Waterway rulemaking process suspended
Private dock on the Alsea River
Current rules remain in effect
 
The department's recent effort to update administrative rules governing waterway leasing on state lands has been suspended indefinitely.
 
"We believe we need more time to listen and respond to the public's issues and concerns relating to the waterway authorization process," said Louise Solliday, Department of State Lands director.
 
At statehood in 1859, Oregon gained ownership of all land underlying navigable and tidally influenced waters. Upland property owners must have authorization from DSL to place a structure on this state-owned land.
 
The department issues authorizations for such uses as docks, boat houses, marinas and recreational cabins on state-owned "submerged and submersible" land. Rules governing these authorizations have been in place since 1972, and changes have been made over time to reflect new types of uses or to clarify rule provisions. The last major revision occurred in the late 1990s.
 
Until further notice, the existing administrative rules governing waterway uses will be in effect (OAR 141-082- 0000 through 141-082-0210).
 
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Land auctions, purchase will enhance department's real estate portfolio
State lands to be auctioned
Transactions subject to Land Board approval in June
 
At a public, oral auction on April 24, two parcels of state forestland sold for a combined total of $670,000. The properties – 37-acre Blachly Mountain in Lane County and 40-acre Tyee in Douglas County – were sold by DSL's broker, Realty Marketing/Northwest (RMNW).
 
RMNW also managed a sealed-bid auction on May 12 of 1,396 acres of forestland in Lane, Douglas, Coos and Curry counties. Five properties sold for a total of $2,538,000. Combined, the two auctions brought in 21 percent more than the established reserve price, a premium of $556,000.
 
The department recently was the successful bidder on the 1.63-acre former State Motor Pool property in downtown Eugene. Located 1/2 block north of the 5th Street Public Market and across from the 27-acre Eugene Water and Electric Board’s redevelopment site on the river, the property was purchased for $1.9 million. Currently used as a parking lot, the property has tremendous potential as a future retail/office/residential mixed-use site. It will be added to DSL's current inventory of nearly 7,000 acres of commercial lands.
 
"These activities are exactly what DSL should be doing to increase the value of our real estate portfolio, which in turn will increase the value of the Common School Fund from revenue-producing lands," said agency director Louise Solliday.
 
The agency's Asset Management Plan directs DSL to sell isolated parcels and reinvest in higher-value lands.
 
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Local communities receive wetland planning assistance
Oregon wetland
Willamette Valley, coastal and county authorities are preparing local wetlands inventories
 
As Oregon's population continues to increase, planning for anticipated growth is an important process for communities across the state. Knowing where wetlands are located – especially locally significant wetlands – is a critical first step for any community that wants to manage growth and potential impacts on aquatic resources, or expand its urban growth boundary.
 
Eight small towns in the Willamette Valley recently have come together, with the help of the Lane Council of Governments (LCOG), to complete wetland inventories. Their goal is to map wetlands in their community, identify locally significant wetlands, and integrate wetlands and riparian-area information into land-use decision processes. Other communities across the state and two county governments also are in varying stages of developing their own local wetlands inventories (LWIs).
 
This year, DSL wetlands staff have helped 18 jurisdictions understand state rules governing wetlands inventories and helped develop work programs, participated in local public meetings, and are reviewing maps and other documents as each community progresses.
 
"We are delighted so many smaller communities are doing wetlands inventories and planning. The number of LWIs we'll review in 2010 is far and away the most we'll have done in one calendar year," said Janet Morlan, wetlands program manager. "Citywide wetlands inventories are extremely helpful to local governments and also help landowners and developers know when wetland permits may be needed," she added.
 
According to Morlan, the communities are doing the work to comply with statewide land-use planning goals, and many are particularly interested in identifying wetlands that help protect water quality in streams and groundwater. For example, Deschutes County is concerned with nitrates and protecting highly susceptible aquifers in southern Deschutes County, and coastal communities are interested in protecting estuarine systems from contamination.
 
The inventory work also has afforded DSL and consultants the opportunity to test the new Oregon Rapid Wetland Assessment Protocol (ORWAP) in the field in several communities. ORWAP is a better tool for assessing how well wetlands perform certain functions, such as water quality improvement, and DSL wants to determine how this method can be modified to identify locally significant wetlands. After this field testing, DSL will assemble a technical advisory group to help with this effort.
 
Communities currently conducting LWIs include:

Adair VillageMonroeMill City
ScioHarrisburgCottage Grove
CreswellLowellJunction City
Deschutes - South CountyFlorenceNewport
Glenwood/SpringfieldBehany (Wash. Co.)Bull Mountain (Wash. Co.)
Arch CapeMonmouthGearhart
 
More information on the LWI process is available from Peter Ryan.
 
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Oregon gains federal recognition for wetland program
Tamara Quays mitigation project
Credits will be sold for wetland mitigation on coast, near Portland
 
Oregon was the first state in the nation to receive federal approval for the In-Lieu Fee Program (ILF) under 2008 federal mitigation rules. Our work has paid off with the approval of two new projects recently started on the Salmon River near Lincoln City and on a working farm near Forest Grove.
 
The two new ILF projects will operate similarly to private wetland mitigation banks. Currently there are 20 banks in Oregon, located primarily in the Willamette Valley area. However, many areas don't have banks within the local watershed. "This is where the ILF program comes in," said Dana Hicks, DSL's mitigation specialist. "We can offer credits that aren't in competition with banks, and at the same time fund high quality wetland restoration that supports regional conservation needs."
 
The two projects are:
 
Tamara Quays, a tidal reconnection project within the Salmon River estuary near Lincoln City. A 40-acre site developed originally in the 1970s as a mobile home park, it's now managed by the Siuslaw National Forest (U.S. Forest Service) and is within the Cascade Head Scenic Research Area.
 
Half-Mile Lane, a stream and wetland restoration in the midst of a working farm with the only salmon-safe certified nursery currently operating in Oregon. Located about three miles northwest of Forest Grove, 28 acres of the farm is now set aside through a conservation easement purchased through ILF monies from the landowners, George and Sara Kral. Clean Water Services out of Hillsboro holds the easement and will manage the project.
 
Read more about the program and projects on the DSL Web site.
 
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Free Workshops scheduled on reporting unclaimed property
Unclaimed property brochures
All businesses and organizations are required to report unclaimed property to the Department of State Lands if they are unable to contact the owner. Common types of unclaimed property include uncashed checks, customer credits, inactive bank accounts, and unapplied deposits.
 
To help explain the reporting process, DSL is offering three-hour specialized seminars at a variety of locations around the state on the following topics:
  • Unclaimed Property Reporting Basics
  • Unclaimed Property for Financial Institutions
The workshops kick off in Salem on June 3 and end July 13 in Portland. Other locations include Pendleton, Medford and Eugene.
 
More information, including online registration, is available on the DSL Web site.
 
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The closer they look, the more they find!
South Slough Science Camp
South Slough camps offer a chance to explore the estuary
 
For the past six summers, student campers have stared into field microscopes at samples they collected from the waters of the South Slough. They see bizarre collections of tiny, geometric shapes being pushed aside by miniscule travelers from a galaxy contained in a drop of water. They see plankton, the microscopic plants and animals of the estuary, come to life before their eyes.
 
This kind of hands-on experience will be front and center when South Slough educators lead 2010 summer science campers on explorations of the estuary, watershed and ocean near Charleston. This summer, the Reserve is offering four grade-level appropriate camps named after the life stages of the Dungeness crab, a creature that uses the estuary throughout its life:
Zoea, one of the early life stages, is for K-1 grade campers
Megalops is the 2nd to 4th grade camp
Instars is the 4th to 6th grade camp
Dungeness will serve kids grades 7-12
"All of our camps include fun, outdoor games and an opportunity to engage in the kind of 'get muddy' science that makes studying estuary biology and ecology so interesting," said Tom Gaskill, education coordinator at the South Slough. "Through field trips and lab activities, campers learn about the forests and watershed of the slough, and they journey to the shores of the estuary and ocean for more opportunities to explore." Students get to meet and learn from real scientists, he said, and help collect data to make sense of their findings.
 
The week-long camps run from July 13 through August 6. More information and registration details are on the South Slough Web site.

The South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve was one of five organizations honored recently with a Coastal America Partnership Award for outstanding efforts to restore and protect the coastal environment. This presidential award was presented to the Ocean Conservation Education Alliance Northwest whose purpose is to “nurture children’s inherent scientific curiosity by employing the multi-disciplinary allure of the ocean to help teach science, technology, math and engineering concepts, and to create professional development opportunities to support teachers and marine science professionals in furthering that goal.” Other members of the alliance include Oregon Sea Grant-Hatfield Marine Science Center, the Oregon Coast Aquarium, Lincoln County School District and the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology.
 
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Contact Information:
 
Julie Curtis
Communications Manager
Oregon Department of State Lands
775 Summer St. NE, Suite 100
Salem, OR 97301-1279
503-986-5298