Master Program Elements

The Shoreline Management Act of 1971 establishes seven basic land and water use elements which must be incorporated into Snohomish County's Shoreline Master Program. These elements include:

Local governments are also encouraged to include in their master programs any other elements, which, because of present uses or future needs, are deemed appropriate or necessary to effectuate the policy of the Shoreline Management Act.

Added Elements

Snohomish County has added two additional elements to its master program, agriculture and implementation. Justification for adding these two elements is provided in the following paragraphs.

Shoreline Management Act

During the development of the shoreline inventory and master program it became very evident that agricultural activities utilize a predominant share of the county's developed shorelines and make a significant contribution to the county's economy. It was also discovered that a high percentage of the county's best farmlands fall under the jurisdiction of the Shoreline Management Act. Therefore, because of the importance of Snohomish County's agricultural shoreline areas and the desirability of addressing the present and future needs of agricultural activities occurring in these areas, goals and general development policies have been formulated as part of an agricultural element to plan and provide for this activity.

It was also felt that because effective and equitable implementation of the goals, policies and regulations of Snohomish County's Master Program is crucial to its ultimate success, implementation itself should be specifically addressed through the expression of goals and policies within the Master Program.

Shoreline Goals

By dealing with shoreline uses systematically as belonging to these generic classes of activities, the policies and goals in the Master Program can be clearly applied to different shoreline uses. In the absence of this kind of specificity in the Master Program, the application of policy and use regulations could become inconsistent and arbitrary.

The following comprehensive set of shoreline goals and general development policies provide the foundation and the framework on which the remainder of the Master Program has been developed. These goals and policies are reflective of the level of achievement believed to be intrinsically desirable for all shoreline uses, resources, needs and developments.