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Belmont Pier Mooring Program Up For Planning Approval

{mosimage}Published 4/26/2007 on Grunion Gazette  

By Carla M. Collado, Stafff Writer

Next Thursday, May 3, the city’s Planning Commission will have a public hearing to once again review plans for the proposed Belmont Pier Boat Mooring Project.

Next Thursday, May 3, the city’s Planning Commission will have a public hearing to once again review plans for the proposed Belmont Pier Boat Mooring Project.

The mooring project would place 45 mooring buoys in the city’s inner harbor — 10 east of Belmont Veterans Memorial Pier, 20 west of the pier and 15 on the lee side of Island White.

The commission already reviewed a Mitigated Negative Declaration for the project at its Dec. 21 meeting, but voted 3-3 to have the Planning Department staff return with tougher measures. (Negative Declarations are environmental reports prepared for projects that the state determines won’t have a significant adverse effect on the environment, and therefore don’t require an environmental impact report.)

At the meeting, various environmental groups, including the Surfrider Foundation, expressed concerns over the possibility that moored boaters might dispose of their trash in the water.

Since then, the Marine Bureau has drafted a Revised Negative Declaration with stricter boater regulations. These include at-boat pump-out service, which would be covered by the mooring fee (ranging from $23 to $46 a night, depending on the boat’s size). Boaters would benefit from other services (at an extra cost) such as shoreboat service, at-boat trash removal and use of landside shower facilities.

The proposal also states that boaters caught by the mooring master dumping any liquid or solid waste into the water and violating mooring regulations would be barred from using the mooring facilities for two years.

“The added availability of at-boat pumpout services and at-boat trash removal, along with increased penalties for violation of the Mooring Regulations, will ensure an environmentally safe program that is anticipated to serve a predominantly local boating community,” the Revised Negative Declaration reads.

The revised report recently underwent a 20-day pubic review period. Once the Planning Commission approves the project, it will then need approval from the City Council and the state Coastal Commission.

The May 3 Planning Commission meeting will take place at 5 p.m. at the City Council chambers in City Hall.

To read the Revised Negative Declaration for the Belmont Pier Boat Mooring Project, visit www.longbeach.gov/plan/pb/epd/er.asp. It also is available at the Department of Planning and Building on the fifth floor of City Hall.

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