WA Dept. of Ecology approves Island County’s shoreline master program
The county’s program affects 210 miles of shoreline, along Puget Sound and fresh waterways, and is expected to improve how those areas are used, restored and managed.
“Island County and its residents have taken a unique approach to many parts of their shoreline program,” Ecology Regional Shorelines Program Manager Erik Stockdale said. “This program reflects a high level of public involvement and interaction that shows how highly they value their shorelines.”
The program establishes categories of shoreline and allows for buffer measurements to be based on individual properties. It also places an emphasis on protecting ecologically intact shorelines and bases residential development policies around historic community use of beaches and canals.
The program, which was updated based on a requirement of Washington’s Shoreline Management Act, is the result of input from community members, property owners, non-profit organizations, an advisory panel for its scientific facets, and state, local and tribal government officials. It is now part of Washington’s Shoreline Master Program.