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AB-1686 Waterways: Lake Mathews.(2011-2012)

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CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2011–2012 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1686


Introduced  by  Assembly Member Jeffries
(Coauthor(s): Assembly Member Miller, Nestande)
(Coauthor(s): Senator Emmerson)

February 14, 2012


An act to add Section 64.6 to the Harbors and Navigation Code, relating to waterways.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1686, as introduced, Jeffries. Waterways: Lake Mathews.
The Department of Boating and Waterways regulates the navigable waters in the state, including the operation of small craft harbors, boating facility planning and design, and beach erosion.
This bill would require the department to allow public access, as prescribed, to Lake Mathews, a reservoir in Riverside County, for the purposes of boating, fishing, and hiking, including access by nonmotorized bicycles. The bill would prohibit body contact with the lake, and limit the type of boats and fuel permitted on the lake. The bill also would allow the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California to develop, fund, and operate any necessary infrastructure; limit the number of boats on the water and persons accessing the recreational area of the lake; establish a fee for access to recreational, boating, and parking areas of the lake; and establish a speed limit for all boats on the water.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 64.6 is added to the Harbors and Navigation Code, to read:

64.6.
 (a) It is the intent of the Legislature to allow for recreational hiking and fishing at Lake Mathews.
(b) The department shall allow public access to Lake Mathews, a reservoir in Riverside County, for the purposes of boating, fishing, and hiking.
(c) Public hiking access shall be to the Lake Mathews-Estelle Mountain Reserve, and public hiking access shall include access by nonmotorized bicycles.
(d) Public access shall not include body contact with the lake.
(e) The department shall deny access to the lake for gas-powered boats unless the boat meets both of the following conditions:
(1) The boat has a four-stroke engine or a direct fuel injection two-stroke engine and complies with regulations of the State Air Resources Board.
(2) The boat uses gasoline free of MTBE additive.
(f) The department shall grant access to the lake for nonmotorized and electric boats.
(g) Access to the lake and habitat shall be consistent with habitat preservation requirements.
(h) The department shall allow the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California to do all of the following:
(1) Work with a city, county, nonprofit organization, or other public agency to develop, fund, and operate any necessary infrastructure.
(2) With any cooperating agency, set a daily limit on the number of boats on the water and persons accessing the recreational area of the lake.
(3) With any cooperating agency, establish a fee for public access to the recreational, boating, or parking area of the lake.
(4) With any cooperating agency, establish a speed limit for all boats on the water.
(i) A local agency shall not take any action contrary to the authority granted to the department pursuant to this section.