New rules for mussel inspection program get hearing before Whatcom council


The boat inspection program to prevent invasive species from entering Lake Whatcom and Lake Samish may expand to include kayaks, canoes and rowboats this year. The public will have a chance to comment on this and other changes at a hearing before the Whatcom County Council on Tuesday, Feb. 25.

The hearing will begin shortly after 7 p.m. at the county courthouse, 311 Grand Ave., Bellingham.

The new set of rules adds a short online course that entitles a boat owner to a $10 discount on the annual inspection fee. Fees would be $50 for watercraft that have motors or require state registration, and $10 for smaller craft, including canoes and kayaks. The discount from the online course would eliminate the fee for smaller boats.

In another change, the day pass provided last year would become a three-day pass.

The inspection program, begun last year, was intended to keep destructive zebra and quagga mussels out of the lakes.

Reach Ralph Schwartz at 360-715-2289 or Read his Politics blog at or get updates on Twitter at @bhampolitics.

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