It was brought to the attention of the public that a meeting would be held on issue of shoreline distance expansion for boats. The current state law states you must be fifty feet from any permanent structure on the water while in tow. Meaning that you need to be at an idle speed while passing within that 50 ft and not have a rider in the water. Beyond that distance as long as you are not in a no wake zone you may be at any speed during recreational watersports use.
This issue is being discussed after waterfront land owners expressed concern for shoreline erosion. It had been said that land owners were expressing concern for property damage which occurs from Mother Nature and general use of any water vessel. Fishermen, wake boats and even sailboats create a wake that can be damaging if to close to a property line.
After meeting with the Lake Anna Civic Association and the Spotsylvania Board of Supervisors, it came to the attention of everyone that the 50 foot shoreline length is state law, but also that each county has its own ordinance. Spotsylvania’s being 200 feet from any shoreline and Louisa requiring 100 feet. However, state officers can only regulate what state law currently is. Therefore, if you are in a county waterway that is different, the county officers must be the ones to cite the citation to the boat driver.
We have developed a committee in regards to this topic and are working with the county to help promote the safety of boating on the water. With the help of county officials and others in the area we can prevent shoreline erosion from common boat use by using general boating etiquette. We will also be discussing raising funds to help with the Lake Anna State Park shorelines and furnishing rip rap to help reduce wave damage on the bird sanctuary and land.
Stay tuned with The Lake Anna Breeze to catch up with the latest news on this issue and be aware that no banning of watersports will occur.
Originally published in Lake Anna Breeze, Issue #26