Long process to get no wake zone returned to Nance Cove on Mount - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Long process to get no wake zone returned to Nance Cove on Mountain Island Lake

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MECKLENBURG COUNTY, NC (WBTV) -

The dissolution of Mountain Island Lake Marine Commission means some no wake zones will be removed from certain areas of the lake, and for residents who want boaters and jet skiers to slow down - it will be a long fight to get no wake zones returned.

Mecklenburg County Commissioners don't have the authority to set no wake zones - areas on the lake where only idling is allowed. The state will now have the final say.

Marine Commissions and the North Carolina Wildlife Resource Commission decide where buoys are placed on lakes.

The Mountain Island Lake Marine Commission is disbanding June 30th. The five buoys the marine commission placed on the lake have already been removed. The state's Wildlife Resource Commission's 11 buoys will remain.

That's still not a comfort for residents who live along Nance Cove - one of the five areas that lost a no wake zone.

"You get a lot of traffic in here which makes it very difficult and dangerous for us here in Nance Cove" said Christopher Carlson, who has been leading the charge to get the no wake zone restored in Nance Cove. "You get fishing boats out here that travel 50, 60, 70 miles per hour... coming through the cove. It gets really dangerous."

Neighbor Bill Gibson, living lakeside for 11 years, said "originally when we first moved in it was very dangerous. Boats were flying through here. Skiers were skiing in the lake. There were coming close to the docks. The docks would be rocking. And with small kids around, it was extremely dangerous and somebody was going to get killed."

But a no wake zone was established and calm prevailed in the waters.

The fear is, now that there's a free for all again, trouble is around the corner.

"Problem now is we don't feel safe as we once did" said Carlson. "All we want is what we had. We just want the no wake zone to be placed exactly where it was and I think we'll all feel a lot safer."

Getting back the no wake zone will take some perseverance.

Tuesday night, County Commissioners agreed to adopt a process.

Residents who want a no wake zone area on Mountain Island Lake will have to submit an application to the county's Land Use and Environmental Service Agency {LUESA}. County employees will then consult and visit the area to see if the no wake zone meets criteria.

LUESA will make a recommendation to County Commissioners, who will hold a public hearing. If the Board says no to the application, the issue will be over.

If commissioners approve the application, LUESA will fill out paperwork that has to be submitted to the NC Wildlife Resource. That commission will then hold another public hearing - but in Raleigh.

If the state approves the no wake zone, LUESA will install and maintain the buoy.

County officials tell WBTV it will take months to get final approval.

"It's so obvious and it's so dangerous if it's not there" said Gibson. "To have to beat the halls of justice to try to get it resolved is just ludicrous."

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