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Cowlitz County Shoreline Master Program

On June 7, 2018, we approved Cowlitz County's shoreline master program (SMP). Cowlitz County's updated SMP becomes effective June 21, 2018, 14 days after we provided notice to Cowlitz County that their SMP was approved.

The comprehensive update will revise the existing SMP, including the goals, policies, regulations, shoreline environment designations, and administrative procedures and definitions. The required and recommended changes have been sent to the County for their review and response. Cowlitz County may agree to these changes or offer alternative language. Final approval will occur when we and the County agree on language that meets state requirements.

On April 27, 2018 we provided changes to Cowlitz County's proposed updated SMP. The required and recommended changes are based on our review whether or not the County's proposed SMP complies with state laws and rules, and a public comment period held from April 4 through May 4, 2017.

Mail and email notices were used to notify interested parties of the public comment period. We also issued a news release to encourage additional public participation and comment. We received six comment letters covering an array of topics including state-owned aquatic lands, shoreline environment designations, shoreline permit requirements, and floodplain hazard reduction regulations. On May 11, 2017, we sent a summary of comments to Cowlitz County for their response. The public comments and the County's response have been incorporated into a Responsiveness Summary (Attachment D).

The comprehensive update will revise the existing SMP, including the goals, policies, regulations, shoreline environment designations, and administrative procedures and definitions. The required and recommended changes have been sent to the County for their review and response. Cowlitz County may agree to these changes or offer alternative language. Final approval will occur when we and the County agree on language that meets state requirements.

The updated shoreline program will regulate future uses along the County's more that 650 miles of shoreline within the unincorporated areas of Cowlitz County including the Columbia, Cowlitz, Kalama and Lewis rivers and large lakes and reservoirs such as Merwin, Silver, Swift and Yale. The SMP also includes several smaller lakes and streams in the Upper Chehalis, Grays-Elochoman, Cowlitz, and Lewis watersheds. These shoreline areas support a wide variety of uses including several ports, hydroelectric facilities, forestry lands, state parks, and natural ares essential for fish and wildlife.

Documents related to approval

Note: All documents are PDF Paper copies of the above documents are available by contacting Kim Van Zwalenburg, Ecology.

Appeals

  • Per RCW 90.58.190(3), an interested party may file an appeal with the Shoreline Hearings Board within 30 days of the publication date of Ecology’s written notice of final action.
  • We plan to publish the notice of final action in the Daily News legal ads on  June 19, 2018.