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It is hereby determined that the system of wetlands, Riparian Areas, rivers, streams, and other natural watercourses within the City contributes to the health, safety, and general welfare of the residents. The specific purpose and intent of these regulations is to regulate future uses and Developments within riparian and wetland setbacks that would impair the ability of riparian and wetland areas to:
(a) Reduce flood impacts by absorbing peak flows, slowing the velocity of floodwaters, and regulating base flow.
(b) Assist in stabilizing the banks of watercourses to reduce bank erosion and the downstream transport of sediments eroded from watercourse banks.
(c) Reduce pollutants in watercourses during periods of high flows by filtering, settling, and transforming pollutants already present in watercourses.
(d) Reduce pollutants in watercourses by filtering, settling, and transforming pollutants in runoff before they enter watercourses.
(e) Provide watercourse habitats with shade and food.
(f) Provide habitat to aquatic organisms and wildlife, by maintaining diverse and connected riparian and wetland vegetation.
(g) Benefit the City economically by minimizing encroachment on wetlands and watercourse channels and the need for costly engineering solutions such as dams, retention basins, and rip rap to protect structures and reduce property damage and threats to the safety of residents; and by contributing to the scenic beauty and environment of the City, and thereby preserving the character of the City, the quality of life of the residents of the City, and corresponding property values.
(Ord. 2013-29. Passed 3-20-13.)