ORDINANCE NO. 2862
AN INTERIM URGENCY ORDINANCE ESTABLISHING AN INSPECTION PROGRAM FOR ALL WATER VESSELS LAUNCHED IN THE COUNTY OF LAKE
The Board of Supervisors of the County of Lake hereby ordains as follows:
Section One: The Board of Supervisors of the County of Lake hereby finds:
a. The County of Lake holds the waters of Clear Lake in trust for the benefit of all its citizens pursuant to legislation enacted in 1973 which conveyed in trust to the County of Lake the submerged lands of Clear Lake for the furtherance of navigation, commerce, fishery, recreation, and wherever possible and appropriate, preservation of the land and waters in their natural state. Clear Lake, as well as all other water bodies within the County of Lake represent a significant environmental resource to our citizens and are interrelated to the distribution systems of the County's water purveyors.
b. The aquatic invasive species of Quagga and Zebra Mussels pose a significant and imminent threat to the water bodies within the County of Lake. The Quagga and Zebra Mussels have already created serious and irreparable harm to bodies of water located in other locations in the United States and it has now been determined that these mussels have infested water bodies within the State of California.
c. Once introduced into a water body, these mussels proliferate at an alarming rate, drastically altering the ecosystem of that water body, harming and/or consuming the natural plant growths and
food sources within the ecosystems they infest.
d. Quagga and Zebra Mussels additionally pose a significant and imminent threat to the water distribution systems of Lake County which draw water from Clear Lake and other water bodies within the County. These mussels attach to and inside the pipelines carrying water to such a significant degree that the ability to distribute water through the County's existing, and in some cases, antiquated
infrastructure, will be severely compromised.
e. An inspection system is integral to the preservation of the water bodies of the County of Lake and to the protection of the County's water distribution systems.
f. It is the intention of the Board of Supervisors in enacting this urgency ordinance to take certain immediate interim steps to protect the water bodies of this County from Quagga and Zebra Mussel infestation in order to preserve public health, safety and welfare.
g. This Ordinance is enacted under the police power of the County pursuant to Article XI, Section 7 of the California Constitution which authorizes the County to adopt and enforce regulations for the protection of the public health, safety, and welfare that are not in conflict with general laws.
Section Two: For purposes of this Ordinance, the following words and terms shall have the definitions and meanings set forth below:
a. "Affidavit of Compliance" means a declaration to be executed by all water vessel owners and operators who wish to launch said vessels in a water body in the County of Lake which attests to the
responsibility of that owner/operator to ensure that his/her water vessel is properly inspected and, if necessary, decontaminated prior to launching.
b. "Certified Inspector" means an individual who has received the necessary training by the State Department of Fish and Game or other qualified agency to conduct inspections of water vessels for the purpose of determining whether said vessels are contaminated with quagga and/or zebra mussels.
c. "Inspection Program" means the program of inspection implemented by the County of Lake to ensure that all water vessels launching into water bodies in Lake County are free from contamination
from Quagga and Zebra mussels.
d. "Launch" means the introduction and/or placing of any water vessel into a water body within the County of Lake.
e. "Live bait" means any fish, worms, or other organisms used in conjunction with fishing the waters of Lake County.
f. "Inspection Sticker" means the sticker issued by a Certified Inspector evincing the fact that the vessel to which the sticker is affixed is free from Quagga and/or Zebra Mussels.
g. "Water body" means any body of water within the County of Lake capable of sustaining a water vessel.
h. "Water vessel" means any boat, trailer, kayak, raft, jet ski, inflatable raft, or other device capable of being introduced into a water body in the County of Lake.
Section Three: Applicability
This Ordinance shall be applicable to any water vessels intending to launch in a water body within the County of Lake.
Section Four. Inspection Program
a. Effective April 8, 2008, except as provided in Section Six hereinbelow, every water vessel owner/operator intending to launch a water vessel in a water body within the County of Lake shall be
required to undergo an inspection of that vessel prior to launching.
b. Said inspection must be performed by a Certified Inspector at one of the following locations:
1. Clearlake Oaks Fire Station
2. Upper Lake Fire Station
3. Konocti Vista Casino and Marina
4. Other designated locations within Lake County
c. If, pursuant to the required inspection, a water vessel is found to be free of any Quagga/Zebra Mussel infestation, the Certified Inspector shall affix an Inspection Sticker in a prominent, easily observable location on that vessel which signifies that the vessel may be launched into a water body in the County.
d. If, pursuant to the required inspection, a water vessel is found to be infested with Quagga/Zebra Mussels, the vessel owner shall be informed that he/she may not launch his/her vessel until such time as that vessel has been decontaminated and re-inspected by a Certified Inspector.
e. Affidavit of Compliance: At the time of the inspection, the vessel owner/operator shall be required to execute an affidavit which attests to the responsibility of that owner/operator to ensure
that his/her water vessel is properly inspected and, if necessary, decontaminated prior to launching in a water body in the County of Lake.
f. Any water vessel which leaves Lake County must submit to reinspection upon re-entry.
g. Stickers shall be valid through December 31, 2008, by which time an owner/operator a water vessel intending to launch in a water body in Lake County must submit to reinspection.
Section Five. Inspection Fees
a. Through June 30, 2008, all inspections of all water vessels shall be performed at no cost to the vessel owner/operator.
b. Thereafter, a fee established by separate Ordinance shall be imposed for every inspection performed.
Section Six. Special Program for Local Water Vessels
a. Effective immediately, and for a period through June 30, 2008, there shall be special program for local residents who own/operate water vessels which are registered in Lake County. This program shall allow said residents to obtain Inspection Stickers through electronic means upon confirmation of residency and registration in all cases where the subject water vessel has been dry and out of the water for a period of thirty (30) days.
b. Local residents who wish to avail themselves of this Special Program may do so by contacting the Clear Lake Chamber of Commerce at 994-3600, the Lakeport Regional Chamber of Commerce at 263-5092, or the Lake County Visitor Center at 274-5652.
c. Each local resident who participates in this Special Program shall be required to complete an Affidavit of Compliance as described hereinabove.
Section Seven. Disposing of Live Bait into a Water Body in Lake County is Prohibited
It shall be unlawful in the unincorporated areas of the County of Lake to dispose of any live bait and/or any liquid containing live bait or any liquid which previously contained live bait in a water body in Lake County.
Section Eight. Criminal Penalties
a. Any person violating any provision of this Ordinance shall be guilty of an infraction or misdemeanor as hereinafter specified. Such individual shall be deemed guilty of a separate offense for each day during which any violation of this chapter is committed or allowed to exist.
b. Any individual convicted of a violation of this chapter shall be:
1. Guilty of an infraction and punished by a fine of one hundred dollars ($100.00) for the first offense.
2. Guilty of an infraction and punished by a fine of not less than two hundred dollars ($200.00) for the second offense;
3. The third and subsequent offenses shall constitute a misdemeanor and shall be punishable by a fine of not less than five hundred dollars ($500.00) but not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) and/or up to six months in the county jail or both.
c. Notwithstanding section a and b above, the first or second offense may be charged and prosecuted as misdemeanor.
d. Payment of any penalty herein shall not relieve any individual from the responsibility of correcting the violations as found by the enforcement officer.
e. Any person found not in compliance with this ordinance is subject to citation, shall be ordered off the water body, and shall be subject to any other legal action as deemed necessary by the enforcement officer.
Section Nine. Public Nuisance Declaration
Any violation of this chapter is hereby declared to be unlawful and a public health nuisance and may be abated by authorized County personnel, irrespective of any other remedy provided in this Ordinance.
Section Ten. This ordinance is an urgency ordinance and is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public safety, health, and welfare for those reasons set forth in the Findings hereinabove.
Section Eleven: It can be seen with certainty that there is no possibility that this interim
ordinance may have a significant effect on the environment.
Section Twelve: All ordinances or parts of ordinances in conflict herewith are hereby repealed to the extent of such conflict and no further.
Section Thirteen: This ordinance shall go into effect immediately, and before the expiration of fifteen days after its passage, it shall be published at least once in a newspaper of general circulation printed and published in the County of Lake.
The foregoing ordinance was introduced before the Board of Supervisors on _28th__ day of _March_, 2008.
AYES: Supervisors Smith, Rushing, Farrington, Brown and Robey
ABSENT OR NOT VOTING: None
COUNTY OF LAKE
Chair, Board of Supervisors
ATTEST: KELLY F. COX
Clerk of the Board of Supervisors
APPROVED AS TO FORM:
ANITA L. GRANT