Grant PUD Pushing for Federal OK for White River Project

February 28, 2012

    Grant County’s controversial salmon rearing project on the pristine White

River above Lake Wenatchee was rejected earlier this month by the Chelan County Hearing Examiner for violating a

number of county codes. But Grant PUD is pushing ahead, defying local regulations by seeking federal authority to

build the project.
    Grant PUD purchased the White River shoreline land several years ago

hoping to raise endangered salmon in order to offset fish losses at the PUD’s dams, as required by the

federal government.
    But Chelan County planners raised a number of concerns about the

project violating county regulations, and Hearing Examiner Andrew Kottkamp denied the PUD’s permits.

/>    Now the PUD is looking to go over the county’s head, appealing directly to the Federal

Energy Regulatory Commission for permission to move forward with the White River project.

That has the Chelan County Natural Resource Director concerned that the public will be cut out of the process.

KOHO's Isaac Kaplan-Woolner has more with Mike Kaputa.
    Grant County PUD declined to

comment before press time, but we expect to follow up with them some time today and will update this story when we

have more.