A bylaw that regulates docks and buoys on area lakes is now in place – and it has teeth.
Columbia Shuswap Regional District directors passed Bylaw 900, which applies to all first-time or replacement docks, private mooring buoys and swimming platforms on Shuswap, Mara, Adams, White, Little White, Humamilt and Hunakwa lakes.
The bylaw will regulate the number, size and setback of these structures as well as uses on the lake be they private or commercial moorings.
As local government zoning bylaws are not retroactive, if docks and buoys complied with the regulations of the day, they are legal under the new bylaw as well.
However, the CSRD is only one of a number of agencies with jurisdiction over the foreshore and water.
Provincial Private Moorage Guidelines apply in all areas, whether they are zoned by the CSRD or not. Federal regulations also apply through DFO and Transport Canada.
A member of the regional district’s Planning and Development Services when work on the bylaw began several years ago, Marcin Pachcinski’s presentation to the board drew laughter.
“This is the most important bylaw since Confederation,” he said. “We got ministerial approval in July… it was a four-year process that took 40 years off my life.”
Area E Rural Sicamous director Rhona Martin and Area F North Shuswap director Larry Morgan praised Pachcinski for his patience and ability to remain calm when members of the public vented their anger toward him at community meetings.
Meanwhile, CSRD staff will launch an information and education program for waterfront property owners and lake users in spring 2013.
For more information on Lakes Zoning Bylaw No. 900, go to www.csrd.bc.ca, phone Marcin Pachcinski at 250-833-5923 or email email@example.com.
With the Lakes Zoning Bylaw now in place, violation of the bylaw will result in enforcement and ticketing, as follows:
• Obstructing an officer – $500
• Unauthorized use or structure – $200
• Exceeding the maximum number of swimming platforms, docks, private mooring buoys, or berths – $200
• Exceeding the maximum size of swimming platforms, docks or walkways, including length and width – $200
• Violation of setbacks for swimming platforms, docks, private mooring buoys, or boat lifts – $200
• Unauthorized use of a swimming platform – $200