WSR 11-19-015

PERMANENT RULES

PARKS AND RECREATION

COMMISSION

[ Filed September 8, 2011, 9:13 a.m. , effective October 9, 2011 ]


Effective Date of Rule: Thirty-one days after filing.

Purpose: Amend chapter 352-37 WAC to define and regulate small-scale mineral prospecting and placer mining in the Seashore Conservation Area. This rule change results from a two-year, legislatively mandated pilot program to examine the impacts of small-scale mineral prospecting on coastal areas.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending chapter 352-37 WAC.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 79A.05.030.

Other Authority: RCW 79A.05.165 and 79A.05.615.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 11-14-106 on July 5, 2011.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 1, Amended 1, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Date Adopted: September 8, 2011.

Valeria Evans

Management Analyst

OTS-4128.1


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 07-03-121, filed 1/22/07, effective 2/22/07)

WAC 352-37-020   Definitions.   Whenever used in this chapter the following terms shall have the meanings herein defined unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

"Aggregate" shall mean a mixture of minerals separable by mechanical or physical means.

"Aircraft" shall mean any machine designed to travel through the air, whether heavier or lighter than air; airplane, dirigible, balloon, helicopter, etc. The term aircraft shall not include paraglider or remote controlled aircraft.

"Campfires" shall mean any open flame from a wood source.

"Camping" shall mean erecting a tent or shelter or arranging bedding, or both, or parking a recreation vehicle or other vehicle for the purpose of remaining overnight.

"Commission" shall mean the Washington state parks and recreation commission.

"Concentrate" shall mean the valuable mineral content separated from aggregate.

"Concentrator" shall mean a device used to physically or mechanically separate the valuable mineral content from aggregate.

"Director" shall mean the director of the Washington state parks and recreation commission or the director's designee.

"Driveable beach" shall mean that area of the ocean beaches lying between the upper or landward limit of the hard sand area and the clam beds.

"Dry sand area" shall mean that area lying above and to the landward side of the hard sand area as defined in this section.

"Excavation site" shall mean the pit, furrow, or hole from which aggregate is removed to process and recover minerals or into which wastewater is discharged to settle out sediments.

"Fire" shall mean any open flame from any source or device including, but not limited to, campfires, stoves, candles, torches, barbeques and charcoal.

"Ganged equipment" shall mean two or more pieces of mineral prospecting equipment coupled together to increase efficiency. An example is adding a second sluice to a high-banker.

"Geocache" means geocaches, letterboxes, and related activities. Geocaching is an outdoor treasure hunting game in which participants (called geocachers) use a Global Positioning System receiver or other navigational techniques to hide and seek containers (called "geocaches" or "caches").

"Hand-held mineral prospecting tools" shall mean tools that are held by hand and are not powered by internal combustion, hydraulic, or pneumatics. Examples include metal detectors, shovels, picks, trowels, hammers, pry bars, hand-operated winches, and battery-operated pumps specific to prospecting; and vac-pacs.

"Hard sand area" shall mean that area over which the tide ebbs and flows on a daily basis; and which is sufficiently hard or firm to support the weight of, and to provide unhindered traction for, an ordinary passenger vehicle.

"High-banker" shall mean a stationary concentrator that can be operated outside the wetted perimeter of the body of water from which the water is removed, using water supplied by hand or by pumping. A high-banker consists of a sluice box, hopper, and water supply. Aggregate is supplied to the high-banker by means other than suction dredging. This definition excludes rocker boxes.

"Hovercraft" shall mean a powered vehicle supported by a cushion of air capable of transporting persons.

"Intimidate" means to engage in conduct which would make a reasonable person fearful.

"Long Beach Peninsula" shall mean that area of the ocean beaches as defined in this section lying between Cape Disappointment on the south and Leadbetter Point on the north.

"Mineral prospecting equipment" shall mean any natural or manufactured device, implement, or animal (other than the human body) that can be used in any aspect of prospecting for or recovering minerals.

"Motor vehicle" shall mean every vehicle that is self-propelled. For the purposes of this chapter, a motor vehicle must be approved for highway use in accordance with Title 46 RCW.

"North Beach" shall mean that area of the ocean beaches as defined in this section lying between Damon Point on the south and Cape Flattery on the north.

"Obstruct pedestrian or vehicular traffic" means to walk, stand, sit, lie, or place an object in such a manner as to block passage by another person or a vehicle, or to require another person or a driver of a vehicle to take evasive action to avoid physical contact. Acts authorized as an exercise of one's constitutional right to picket or to legally protest, and acts authorized by a permit issued pursuant to WAC 352-32-165 shall not constitute obstruction of pedestrian or vehicular traffic.

"Ocean beaches" shall mean all lands fronting on the Pacific Ocean between Cape Disappointment and Leadbetter Point; between Toke Point and the south jetty on Point Chehalis; and between Damon Point and the Makah Indian Reservation, and occupying the area between the line of ordinary high tide and the line of extreme low tide, as these lines now are or may hereafter be located, and, where applicable, between the Seashore Conservation Line, as established by survey of the commission and the line of extreme low tide, as these lines now are or may hereafter be located, or as defined in RCW 79A.05.605, provided, that the ocean beaches shall not include any lands within the established boundaries of any Indian reservation.

"Pan" shall mean an open metal or plastic dish that can be operated by hand to separate gold or other minerals from aggregate by washing the aggregate.

"Parasail" shall mean a parachute-type device attached to a rope pulled by a motor vehicle, resulting in the participant being lifted from the ground by the force of the wind.

"Person" shall mean all natural persons, firms, partnerships, corporations, clubs, and all associations or combinations of persons whenever acting for themselves or by an agent, servant, or employee.

"Placer" shall mean a glacial or alluvial deposit of gravel or sand containing eroded particles of minerals.

"Power sluice" shall mean high-banker.

"Power sluice/suction dredge combination" shall mean a machine that can be used as a power sluice, or with minor modifications as a suction dredge.

"Prospecting" shall mean the exploration for minerals and mineral deposits.

"Riffle" shall mean the bottom of a concentrator containing a series of interstices or grooves to catch and retain a mineral such as gold.

"Rocker box" shall mean a nonmotorized concentrator consisting of a hopper attached to a cradle and a sluice box that can be operated with a rocking motion.

"Seashore conservation area" shall mean all lands now or hereafter under state ownership or control as defined in RCW 79A.05.605.

"Sluice" shall mean a trough equipped with riffles across its bottom which can be used to recover gold and other minerals with the use of flowing water.

"South Beach" shall mean that area of the ocean beaches as defined in this section lying between Toke Point on the south and the south jetty on Point Chehalis on the north.

"Spiral wheel" shall mean a hand-operated or battery-powered rotating pan that is used to recover gold and minerals with the use of water.

"Suction dredge" shall mean a machine that is used to move submerged aggregate via hydraulic suction. Aggregate is processed through an attached sluice box for the recovery of gold and other minerals.

"Wetted perimeter" shall mean the areas of a watercourse covered with flowing or nonflowing water.

"Wind/sand sailer" shall mean a wheeled, wind-driven recreational conveyance.

[Statutory Authority: Chapter 79A.05 RCW. 07-03-121, 352-37-020, filed 1/22/07, effective 2/22/07. Statutory Authority: RCW 79A.05.030, 79A.05.035, 79A.05.070, 79A.05.165, 79A.05.605, and 79A.05.610. 05-24-030, 352-37-020, filed 11/30/05, effective 12/31/05. Statutory Authority: RCW 79A.05.030, 79A.05.035, 79A.05.055, 79A.05.070, and 79A.05.165. 05-01-068, 352-37-020, filed 12/9/04, effective 1/9/05. Statutory Authority: RCW 43.51.040. 90-07-050, 352-37-020, filed 3/19/90, effective 4/19/90.]


NEW SECTION
WAC 352-37-340   Small-scale beach prospecting and placer mining.   (1) Small-scale beach prospecting and placer mining is allowed year-round in the seashore conservation area, except within fifty feet on either side of designated ocean beach access roads.

(2) The director may close specific areas to beach prospecting or placer mining when deemed necessary for wildlife protection or public safety.

(3) Only hand-held mineral prospecting tools and the following mineral prospecting equipment may be used in the seashore conservation area:

(a) Pans;

(b) Spiral wheels;

(c) Sluices, concentrators, rocker boxes, and high-bankers with riffle areas totaling ten square feet or less, including ganged equipment;

(d) Suction dredges that have suction intake nozzles with inside diameters that should be five inches or less, but shall be no greater than five and one-quarter inches to account for manufacturing tolerances and possible deformation of the nozzle. The inside diameter of the dredge hose attached to the nozzle may be no greater than one inch larger than the suction intake nozzle size;

(e) Power sluice/suction dredge combinations that have riffle areas totaling ten square feet or less, including ganged equipment, suction intake nozzles with inside diameters that should be five inches or less, but shall be no greater than five and one-quarter inches to account for manufacturing tolerances and possible deformation of the nozzle, and pump intake hoses with inside diameters of four inches or less. The inside diameter of the dredge hose attached to the suction intake nozzle may be no greater than one inch larger than the suction intake nozzle size; and

(f) High-bankers and power sluices that have riffle areas totaling ten square feet or less, including ganged equipment, and pump intake hoses with inside diameters of four inches or less.

(4) Upon request, other mineral prospecting equipment may be considered by the commission on a pilot basis.

(5) All trenches, depressions, or holes created in the beach during mining activities must be back-filled before working another excavation site.

(6) Setting up or using mining equipment or conducting mining activities in a manner and/or location that subjects people, personal property, or park resources to injury or damage or impedes traffic on the driveable portion of the beach is prohibited.

(7) A person may possess or transport up to ten gallons of concentrate per day.

(8) Any violation of this section is an infraction under chapter 7.84 RCW.

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Washington State Code Reviser's Office