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Waterfront Access Bill Proponents Seek Grassroots Support

Working waterfronts—the parts of ocean and inland coastal communities at the water’s edge that are populated with marine-dependent businesses including service centers, boatyards and haul-out facilities—are essential for high-performance sportboat owners. Yet according to a press release from Boat/US, the largest boat owner’s group in the country, around the nation these areas are struggling to hold their ground thanks to development pressure and poor planning.

To help protect the marine businesses in these areas,  Rep. Chellie Pingree of Maine has introduced the “Keep America’s Waterfront Working Act of 2011” (H.R. 3109) in Congress. BoatUS is urging boaters to ask their Congressional representatives to sign-on as co-sponsors of the bill.

“Boaters rely on such small businesses to provide critical access to the water and essential services for their vessels and families,” said Ryck Lydecker, the assistant vice president of government affairs for Boat/US, in the release. “If Rep. Pingree’s bill passes, it would be an extremely positive step in preserving access, facilities and services for recreational boaters and anglers.”

H.R. 3109 currently has 18 co-sponsors but needs more, according to the BoatUS release. Boaters can review the bill and ask their members of Congress to co-sponsor on the Boat/US website.