Press Release



Kittitas County, WA - 04/13/2018 - Kittitas County is hosting several focus group sessions April 17th through 19th to collect information that will be used in forming an access improvement plan for the Yakima and Cle Elum Rivers. The County began the process of developing the plan earlier this year by appointing a citizen advisory group and hiring a consultant to direct the effort. The project is intended to create a strategy for improving public access for a variety of recreational and other uses along the river corridors.

All sessions will be specific to certain areas of interest and will  take place at the Heritage Center at the Kittitas Valley Event Center.  Dates and times for the focus groups are as follows:
                                Tuesday, April 17th           1:00        State and Federal Agencies
                                                                          4:00        Fishermen and Fishing Guides
                                                                          7:00        Private Landowners
                                Wednesday, April 18th    3:00        Emergency Responders
                                                                        5:00        River Rafters
                                                                        7:00        Non-fishing Boaters
                                Thursday, April 19th         1:00        Wildlife Viewing/Photographers
                                                                         5:00        Campers and Hikers
                                                                         7:00        Hunters
Everyone in attendance at the focus groups sessions will have an opportunity to provide input which will be included in discussion and decision-making by the citizen advisory committee as it creates the recommended plan.  Tom Beckwith, with Beckwith Consulting, will be leading the sessions.  Anyone who is interested in improving access to the Yakima and Cle Elum Rivers is welcome to attend one or multiple sessions.
The river access improvement planning effort is led by the County’s Public Lands Advisory Committee.  It is a county-wide effort focusing on the entire mainstem of the Yakima River and the portion of the Cle Elum River downstream from Cle Elum Dam.  Funding for the plan is being provided by the County’s lodging tax program.

Kittitas County, from the Cascades to the Columbia, and online at


Contact: Paul Jewell, Kittitas County Commissioner 509-962-7508