For at least ten years I have served on the Lower Columbia Fish Recovery Board. It has secured funding for over 300 salmon habitat projects on Washington tributary rivers and streams from Bonneville Dam to Fort Columbia. According to state law, Cowlitz, Clark, Wahkiakum, Lewis, and Skamania Counties each have commissioners on the board, along with citizen-at-large members from each of those counties, plus a state legislator, and representatives from the Cowlitz nation, hydro power and environmental groups. Our citizen-at-large is Hal Mahnke. I currently serve as Treasurer of the Board.
The science of fish recovery is still emerging and with the life cycle of salmon as long as seven years, the results are sometimes difficult to ascertain, especially considering we have no control over what happens in the ocean where they live a majority of their lives. Nevertheless, we are making steady progress in our region, mostly in removing fish barriers -- those aging, broken down culverts the fish avoid. This year our county has a record number of such projects, along Abernathy, Delameter, and Ostrander Creeks, as well as the Toutle and Lewis Rivers, plus the Coweeman – most of it from state and federal sources. I am particularly proud of the role I played on this Board in re-prioritizing the major recovery effort at the confluence of the North and South Forks of the Toutle.
WEBER'S EXPERIENCE GETS THINGS DONE