King’s Way to break ground Permits

The time frame to appeal development of a youth camp at King’s Way Foursquare Church near Carlsborg has passed and church pastor Michael Van Proyen celebrated by submitting a packet of plans to the Clallam County Department of Community Development June 30 in anticipation of a building permit.

If everything goes as planned, Van Proyen said the church will be able to begin construction in spring 2009.

The church, Clallam County and nearby neighbors to the proposed youth camp had been locked in legal battle after legal battle since 2001. In November 2008, the county and the church reached a settlement that allowed the camp as proposed by the church without the restrictions originally placed on its size and capacity.

If the building permit process goes through as requested by the church, the camp will be able to house up to 350 overnight campers and staff on the church’s land at 1023 Kitchen-Dick Road.

The agreement with the county also allows as many as 22 cabins and parking for recreational vehicles. Outdoor activities are limited to 7 a.m.-11 p.m. except on Easter Sunday.

The Clallam County hearings examiner initially approved the camp in 2001 but put restrictions on its size and capacity, only allowing 159 campers, and the church appealed, stating the decision infringed on its freedom of religion.

“The thrust of the (Religious Land Use and Institutionalize Persons Act) suit was that these conditions substantially burdened the religious expression and practice of the church,” King’s Way attorney Thomas Richardson said after the November settlement.

The settlement marked the second between the county and the church. The first settlement, made in January 2006, was overturned by Jefferson County Superior Court Judge Craddock Verser due to the settlement process. The second settlement was allowed.

But neighbors to the project Erwin and Diana Jones continued to fight the camp’s approval with a Washington State Land Use Petition Act complaint, which was denied by Kitsap County Superior Court Judge Russell Hartman.

On June 23, the time frame for appeal on any of the legal decisions or settlements passed, giving Van Proyen the green light to submit building plans.

The church’s land is in the Carlsborg area but not in its urban growth area so it is unlikely to be affected by a recent Western Washington Growth Management Hearings Board decision labeling the Carlsborg urban growth area zoning invalid.

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