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Park encroachment policy second hearing Dec. 1

The Mercer Island Open Space Conservancy Trust together with the Mercer Island Parks and Recreation Department is seeking public comment on a proposed Encroachment Policy regarding Trust properties, namely Pioneer Park -- a 113 acre forested park on the south end of the Island.

The Trust will be holding a second public hearing at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 1st in the Council Chambers at City Hall at 9611 SE 36th,. The hearing is to seek additional public comment on the revised Park Encroachment Policy. Approximately 20 encroachments into park property were discovered as part of a park property boundary survey conducted as part of the Pioneer Park Master Plan and Forest Management Plan activities.

The Trust has also developed a draft encroachment policy to better define the policy and requirements for addressing encroachments.

An ``encroachment'' is the unlawful, unauthorized, or unpermitted use of the property of another. An encroachment may include a structure, such as a fence or retaining wall or part of a building, parking, a roadway, a storage area or garden, fill material, rockeries, or plants. Private owners cannot establish rights to public land by using it for a number of years.

Copies of the revised draft policy can be obtained at City Hall, 2040 84th Ave. S.E., Mercer Island, WA 98040 or by downloading a copy online to print at www.miparks.net. Comments can also be submitted in writing to City of Mercer Island Parks and Recreation Department, 2040 84th Ave. SE, Mercer Island, WA 98040 -- ATTN: Encroachments or via e-mail to miparks@ci.mercer-island.wa.us.

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