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Shoreline Management

Shoreline Management Act Jurisdiction

The Shoreline Management Act (SMA) applies to:

Specific larger water bodies are classified as shorelines of statewide significance (RCW 90.58.030)

Some other key terms and concepts related to shoreline jurisdiction are:

Naturally occurring and manmade alterations of the shoreline may result in modifications in the boundary of shoreline jurisdiction where the action changes the ordinary high water mark or the other physical characteristics that determine jurisdiction of the SMA. Examples of such alterations include permitted manmade changes such as land-filling and dredging, flood control projects, and natural changes due to landslides, flooding, channel alterations, or river course changes. (RCW 90.58.020)

The state approved SMP becomes the official delineation of SMA jurisdiction

When a comprehensive SMP update is approved by Ecology, it becomes the official delineation of SMA water bodies for that town, city or county (WAC 173-18-044). The maps and legal descriptions in the approved SMP will replace the lists of water bodies contained in WAC 173-18 (streams and rivers), WAC 173-20 (lakes) and WAC 173-22 (shorelands and wetlands).

For more information

Law: RCW 90.58.030(2) (Definitions)

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