Sometimes good projects get stalled, and architects, land use specialists and attorneys can't get them going again. In the case of the Wallooskee-Youngs salmon habitat restoration project on Youngs Bay, at its confluence with the Wallooskee River, the project was 90 percent completed but became hung up on the rocks for nearly two years. This complex project to restore about 200 acres of prime salmon habitat involved local contractors, Indian tribes and local, state and federal agencies.When all seemed lost, the parties made one last effort to bring in a well-respected negotiator. She is better known as the state senator for Columbia, Clatsop and Tillamook counties — Sen. Betsy Johnson. Though she has a law degree, it is the panoply of skills and tools that Senator Johnson brings to a problem that makes her a truly great senator, mediator and outstanding cheerleader for her senate district. Her Rolodex of key local, state and federal officials, her articulateness, her ability to distill a complex problem to its bare essentials, and her tireless efforts to coax and cajole parties back to the bargaining table, are simply unmatched.Senator Johnson just gets it done. As a result, this multimillion dollar project to restore salmon habitat in the Columbia estuary is now in full operation.
You can view the restoration project from the Astoria Column parking lot.
Thank you Senator Johnson.Brian B. Doherty and William L. RasmussenMiller Nash Graham & Dunn LLP