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AUGUST 11, 1997


Now for the rest of the story

  John Adams, Blakely Ridge Project Manager, seems to want to forget the testimony he gave to the King County Hearing Examiner:
   "I'd like to turn to the last community issue I wanted to address today was ground water. The final EIS and King County staff have concluded that the project will have no significant adverse impacts on shallow wells in the vicinity of the project ... First, no ground water is proposed to be withdrawn for use by this project."
   This claim (promise?) not to use groundwater, was made at the same time Blakely had an application to use groundwater pending at the Department of Ecology. The issue of groundwater, and more importantly, the project's impact on local aquifers, was of critical importance to Blakely, and they fought very hard during the hearings to avoid any requirement that they monitor the project's impact on the local aquifers. They got their way when the Hearing Examiner concluded in the permit that the impact of Blakely Ridge did not need to be monitored on surrounding wells. This decision was partly– or greatly– because Adams testified that the projects were not going to use any groundwater.
   After Ecology denied their application for groundwater, Blakely pursued it with the State Pollution Control Board, and eventually filed suit against the State to force the granting of a water right. Hardly the actions you would take if you weren't planning to use the groundwater.
   Did Adams deceive the Hearing Examiner and the County? You decide.
   During the Northridge hearings it was shown that the County approved Blakely Ridge and Northridge 'without' proof of water availability. So don't expect the King County Council to slow this developer's plans if they win their suit. Blakely's supporters on the Council have consistently demonstrated their total lack of concern for the existing neighborhoods.
   Michael Costello, Redmond