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‘Water lodge’ regulations proposed

SANDPOINT – Bonner County officials are considering ways to regulate a new type of float home being sold in the Inland Northwest.

The water lodges are considered vessels by the U.S. Coast Guard, but some people use them the same way they would use traditional float homes – as full-time residences.

The lodges have a wave-breaking hull and optional, small-horsepower motors, and don’t need to permanently tie into terrestrial septic systems.

Bonner County’s Waterways Advisory Committee has proposed rules that would regulate the vessels, requiring owners to obtain a permit and renew it annually. Owners would have to have approved permanent or seasonal moorage, and the lodges’ septic system would be inspected for conformance with Idaho’s Marine Sewage Disposal Act.

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