No, the waters aren't roiling from thousands of Kokanee hatching. Unfortunately, it is from scandal. The fallout from the Spokesman-Review column and editorial, not to mention your loyal Muckraker, has been huge.
Shrieks of dismay are resounding all over the West Coast and from the Canadian Border to the depths of Boise. A well known local activist even showed up to get a guided tour, prepatory to calling his political friends in the capitol.
For those that haven't read any of these reports, a developer, anxious to get ahead of the boating season, jumped not the shark, but murdered thousands of the just hatched Kokanee by the incessant pounding of a barge pile driver,driving steel pilings for a walkway out to the boardwalk at newly named Harbor Marina (formerly known as Bayview Marina). Visiting the site last evening,I witnessed trash,building material, dumped in the water covering the spawning beds of these endangered fish.
Not just the spearing of these spawning beds but the seismic shock caused a massive die-off of the last large spawning beds in the lake. A combination of steep shorelines and deep inshore waters makes most of the lake's 44 mile shoreline unsuitable for spawning. The Villain? Bob Holland, President and owner of Waterford Park Homes, LLC.
Since Avista and other Dam Operators pay reparations for the loss of fish habitat, it would seem that Holland should be sued for the damages, both present and future to this valuable fish run.
The following is a letter to the editor, printed here with permission.
A stop work order and a $2,500 fine for the damage to the kokanee spawning beds in Bayview by developer Bob Holland and his Waterford Company are ridiculous. This developer has consistently disregarded the zoning and permitting process of Kootenai County.
Until Mr. Holland and his company restore the spawning beds and make monetary compensation to the people of Idaho, I would suggest the following actions be taken: First, all permits issued to Holland/Waterford should be revoked. Second, all work on his projects should be stopped. Third, any new requests for permits should be rejected.
What is the compensatory value for the spawning beds and the value of the years of work to bring the kokanee back? I'm not certain but perhaps somewhere between $500 million and a billion might get Mr. Holland's attention. While a person or company has a right to develop their property within the constraints of the law, they do not have the right to destroy that which belongs to us all.
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