Kitsap County has shoreline buffer plans.

The following comes from the Kitsap County SMP Update draft:

  • Decks within the Buffer are limited to ten feet by ten feet
  • Boathouses are limited to 200 square feet
  • Swimming pools, sports courts or fields are not allowed below the reduced standard buffer
  • View Thinning is limited to 25% of the property width or less.
  • Mitigation conditions or requirements are forever
  • Criminalization of Violations: Any person willfully engaged in activities on the shorelines of the state in violation of the act, the master program, or any rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto shall be guilty of a gross misdemeanor, pursuant to RCW 90.58.220.

 Supporting Information

SMP Chapter 5 General Regulations

C. Vegetation Conservation Buffers

8. Standards for Water-Oriented Appurtenances. In order to accommodate water-oriented uses and modifications within the buffer, the following standards shall apply:

(i) Trails. Trails shall be limited to five feet in width, except where demonstrated necessary for a water-dependent use. Disturbance to soil, hydrological character, trees, shrubs, snags and important wildlife habitat shall be minimized.

(ii) Decks and Viewing Platforms. Decks and viewing platforms may be permitted, but shall be limited to ten feet by ten feet (10’x10’) in size, unless demonstrated that a larger structure will not result in a net loss of shoreline ecological function through submittal of a Shoreline Mitigation Plan.

(iii) Beach Stairs. Beach stairs are permitted, subject to the exemption provisions. Beach stairs placed below the ordinary high water mark will normally require a shoreline exemption from Kitsap County

(v) Water-Dependent Storage. Water-dependent storage, including boat houses and sheds above ordinary high water shall be allowed provided:

(A) The width shall be no greater than 25’ or 25% of the lot width, whichever is less;

(B) The height shall not be greater than 14’ above grade, and shall also comply with the View Blockage provisions of this program;

(C) The overall size shall not exceed 200 square feet. Exceptions may be considered upon demonstration of need. In such cases, applicable Mitigation Standards (Appendix E), View Blockage (Section 5F) and Residential Building Code provisions shall apply.

(vi) In no case shall non-water-dependent uses and activities be allowed below the Standard Reduced Buffer. This includes swimming pools and sports courts or fields.

9. Standards for View Thinning

(i) View thinning activities shall be limited to 25% of the total buffer length in the High Intensity and Shoreline Residential designations;

(ii) View thinning activities shall be limited to 15% of the total buffer length in the Urban Conservancy and Rural Conservancy designations;

(iii) No tree removal is allowed in the Natural designation for view enhancement, however limited tree limbing may be allowed upon review and approval by the Department.

(iv) View thinning within the limited areas specified above shall generally be limited to tree limbing. Where tree removal is demonstrated to be necessary, replanting of native trees shall occur at a 3:1 ratio within the buffer area.

10. Mitigation Compliance

(i) Unless otherwise specified, mitigation shall take place prior to the final project inspection to provide assurance that it will be completed and to mitigate for temporal loss of shoreline functions;

(ii) Kitsap County shall require monitoring reports on an annual basis for a minimum of five years and up to ten years, or until the department determines that the mitigation project has achieved success. The mitigation plan shall provide specific criteria for monitoring the mitigation project. Results and additional conditions shall be electronically tagged to the parcel for future reference.

(iii) Mitigation conditions or requirements shall run with the parcel. In the event that a subsequent landowner applies for additional permits, the electronic permit database will be queried for past mitigation requirements. If such mitigation is no longer in place or functioning, it shall be reinstalled prior to permit issuance.

Chapter 6 Permit Provisions, Review and Enforcement (Page 14)

(6) Criminal Penalties. Any person willfully engaged in activities on the shorelines of the state in violation of the act, the master program, or any rules and regulations adopted pursuant thereto shall be guilty of a gross misdemeanor, pursuant to RCW 90.58.220.

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