Senate Vote Delivers Funding for Pritchard Park

Jan 22 2004

$2 million to acquire land for Pritchard Park is now headed to the President for his signature

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash) announced that $2 million in federal funding for Pritchard Park has cleared the final hurdle and is on its way to the White House for the President’s signature. The funding was included in the Omnibus Appropriations bill, which passed the Senate this afternoon. The bill had passed the House of Representatives in December.

Murray voted on Tuesday and again today to move forward with Omnibus bill. If today’s vote had failed, funding for every Washington state project in the bill would have been in jeopardy.

Murray congratulated Rep. Jay Inslee, who worked hard to get the funding for his community.

“Pritchard Park will be a great resource for the community, and I was proud to work with Rep. Inslee to secure the funding,” Murray said. “This investment will help purchase land, clean up the property, protect wildlife and preserve our history.”

Said Rep. Inslee: "After working with the community on this effort for several years, it is heartening to know that these funds will go a long way to creating a unique asset for the region. This park will help ensure that our history and natural resources are preserved for public use."

The 50-acre tract, formerly known as the Wyckoff property, is located on the south side of Eagle Harbor and is owned by a trust. Proceeds from the sale of the tract will be used to continue the ongoing environmental cleanup activities on the site. The park is to be named Pritchard Park, after the former GOP leader from Bainbridge Island, Joel Pritchard. A memorial to the forced internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, for which private funds are being raised, is also planned for the site.

The total cost to acquire the 50 acre property is estimated to be $8.0 million. To date, the city, county and state have pledged $2.5 million to buy the land. In addition, local supporters have launched a $2.0 million private fundraising effort. The federal funds in the fiscal year 2004 appropriations bill mark a significant step forward to complete the project. Local partners include the City of Bainbridge Island, Kitsap County and State of Washington, the Trust for Public Land, the Bainbridge Island Land Conservancy, and other private parties.