Letters to the Editor

Gravel pit: Protect our natural beauty

We have had a home in Dugualla Heights for 14 years. We were attracted to Whidbey for the same reason most all were it remains a pristine blend of untouched wildlife, beauty and serenity.

We have a bird book on the widow sill, and after all these years we are still identifying new birds my family has never seen before and that we know we will never see anywhere else in the other 98 percent of the commercialized United States.

So now we are at a point where our county commissioners, who we all entrust to protect our rare and fragile Whidbey lifestyle and environment, have to decide between developing a new gravel pit and protecting the serenity and values of a waterfront community with 200-plus homes…and we are wondering why this is a hard decision.

Does a new gravel pit have to be on Whidbey Island? Is it in keeping with the image and perception of Whidbey that will continue to attract tourists and homeowners/property taxes over the next decades? If they don’t think a gravel pit is harmful, where are they on oil refineries? Or pulp plants? At least they would generate some decent tax revenue.

Our point is simply to remind our commissioners that other than the water and environmental issues, there is another issue of demonstrating a protective image and concern for Whidbey’s fragile and rare lifestyle, a critical concern they must take into consideration.

Those entrusted with the long term development of Hilton Head Island, Laguna Beach, Mystic Connecticut, Friday Harbor and even the town of Coupeville understand the long term commercial value of visibly and frequently demonstrating concern, control and protection of their perceived lifestyles and natural beauty. Most of those other managed areas of the country can’t hold a candle to the natural and fragile beauty entrusted to our Island County Commissioners.

Web (Skip), Tina, Alex and Drew Barth live in Oak Harbor,

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