Letter: Residents know jet noise affects quality of life


Ann Harvey’s June 11 Sound Off points to a wide number of solid reasons to relocate at least a large portion of the Growlers. Here is one more reason.

A recent Coupeville Comprehensive Plan update sought to “gather community feedback on the plan’s Vision Element and general direction.” To do that, the Town Council distributed a survey in December 2021 to which there were 255 respondents.

The results to the three most pertinent of four questions were as follows:

1) What do you love most about Coupeville? Top response of 13 possible answers: The quality of life (it is enjoyable to live here).

2) What are you most concerned about for Coupeville? Top response of 10 possible answers: Impacts from military jet noise.

3) What do you hope happens over the next 20 years in Coupeville?

Top response of 10 possible answers: Coupeville grows gracefully, using good site and building design and without sacrificing the quality of life. And its near tie: Public lands are preserved and easily accessible, including shoreline areas and trails.

Those survey results reveal the most valued of attributes — what residents most love and want for Coupeville —are the most jeopardized and threatened by military jet noise. Clearly, the residents understand that jet noise detracts from the quality of their lives, restrains graceful growth alternatives, and invades the environmental sanctity of their public lands.

If the Washington State and Citizens of Ebeys Reserve (COER) ultimately succeed in their NEPA lawsuit, the Navy will be facing heightened political pressure to adjust its operations away from Coupeville. If the town council means to take the survey and their constituents seriously, the council should be fully prepared to swiftly and meaningfully weigh in.

Bob Wilbur