Reasonable delay

Delaying new shoreline zoning regulations makes sense if the time is used to clarify and improve the rules.

Last week’s decision to delay new state shoreline regulations by two years appears to be aimed at creating a clearer, more effective rule and make it easier for local governments to implement the measure. If that’s the result, it’s a good thing for clean water and for local governments.

And a delay – unanimously approved by the state Natural Resources Board – is certainly far better than what some legislators wanted, which was to scrap the rules altogether.

The Department of Natural Resources says there was a lot of confusion about the complex set of rules and that more time is needed to tweak the rules and better explain them.