The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

County planning commission receives shoreline update


October 4, 2018

The Wahkiakum County Planning Commission last Thursday accepted a proposed update of the county's shoreline management program from the county commission's Real Property Rights Advisory Committee.

Planners had recommended approval of a document in May, 2017, prepared in cooperation with consultants, but county commissioners felt it was too complicated and heard citizen concerns that the proposed plan was more stringent than required under state law. They sent the plan to the property rights committee and asked them to edit it and submit it to the planning commission.

Two members of the property rights committee, Nick Nikkila and Chuck Hendrickson, led the process to edit the proposed plan.

"We tried to make it more palatable, but the fact remains, it contains mandates required by state legislation," Nikkila said Thursday.

"We ought to be able to understand the requirements that affect our property," he added.

Hendrickson said that they had reduced the area of land that might be impacted under wetlands guidelines and eliminated language and requirement that weren't found in shoreline plans from other areas. Existing agricultural activities could continue without permitting; new, different activities would need to go through the permitting process. They removed "requirements for costly studies and put them at the discretion of the county shoreline administrator."

And among the other changes, they strengthened requirements to prevent runoff from agricultural land treated with Class B biosolids from entering water courses.

After discussing the changes with real property rights committee members, planners said they were happy with the new version.

County Public Works Director Chuck Beyer said department staff would prepare a final draft and bring it back to the planners who could then vote to send it to the county commission for their consideration.


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