Evil and wrong.
This is wrong on so many levels! I suppose the remaining Alabama Power lakes are next followed by other states around the country....I still dont understand why EVERY boat manufacturer that has a banned model in its lineup did not join in the fight....if this sets a precedent for the rest of the country they will all be out of business!
Just as I was trying to chill and try to forget today's events,I got a very strange phone call. We may have an anonymous donor that is going to pay off our legal bill debt and offer seed money for an appeal effort. If true,and I do trust the messenger without asking questions,we may have a Captain Kirk coming in. Maybe the Klingons haven't won yet. Please keep the faith and I will keep everyone informed as I can.
I would think a number of members here, myself included, would be willing to help out if you end up appealing. It's going to take an organized effort and top notch representation to be successful.....
Mar 26, 2:55 PM EDT
Judge upholds boat restrictions on three Alabama lakes
By PHILLIP RAWLS
Associated Press Writer
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- A Montgomery County judge has upheld a state law banning many high-speed boats and large vessels from three popular lakes in east Alabama, and now the state plans to begin enforcement.
Montgomery County Circuit Judge Johnny Hardwick ruled Tuesday that the boat ban was constitutional, a victory for lake residents and upscale resort developers seeking tranquil waters.
The Legislature passed the ban in 2006 to cover three Alabama Power Co. lakes: Martin, Weiss and Harris, which is also known as Lake Wedowee. But the state Department of Conservation withheld enforcement after some boaters owners and a Jasper boat dealer challenged the law's constitutionality.
State Conservation Commissioner Barnett Lawley, who oversees the state Marine Police, said Wednesday his agency will begin enforcing the law.
Lawley said the boats used by Marine Police on Alabama lakes can't keep pace with speedy cigarette boats, but the officers only have to read the registration numbers on the boats to track down the owners for violations.
"They don't have to run them down," he said.brilliant! I'm sure it's a HUGE problem
Montgomery attorney Bobby Segall, who represented Lake Martin residents who intervened in the case, said his clients were pleased with the judge's decision. He said the banned boats create noise, safety and environmental problems that detract from life on the lake.
The legislation bans most cigarette boats by prohibiting boats more than 26 feet 11 inches long that are rated for speeds over 60 mph.
It also prohibits any new houseboats and any new motorboats longer than 30 feet, 6 inches from being put on the lakes, but those already on the lakes can remain, provided they have sanitation systems to prohibit wastes from being dumped into the lakes and are inspected annually. The ban does not affect sailboats.
Some boat owners and a Jasper boat dealer sued the state Department of Conservation over the law, contending that it did not provide equal protection and was unconstitutionally vague. The judge rejected those arguments.
"Restricting certain vessels in order to create a particular atmosphere on a lake is conceptually the same as limiting 18-wheel trucks from traveling through a crowed residential neighborhood, or not allowing power boats on a bird sanctuary," the judge wrote.WTF???
Jasper boat dealer Robert Nelems said a grass-roots effort had been behind the lawsuit, and it cost $100,000 to pursue. He said the defendants don't have the money at this time for an appeal.
"It's a very sad day for the high-performance and large boat industry, their dealers and owners," he said.
Two east Alabama legislators pushed the legislation in hopes of attracting an upscale development on Lake Harris similar to Reynolds Plantation on Lake Oconee east of Atlanta. The 10,000-acre Georgia development includes 80 miles of shoreline, golf courses, million-dollar homes, and a Ritz-Carlton Lodge.
Some Alabama lake residents joined in support of the bill after Georgia restricted boats on some lakes, and Georgia boaters crossed the state line, the judge noted in his decision.well there ya go...if Georgia residents are for it then why not uphold it....another brilliant comment
The legislation originally covered 11 lakes in Alabama, but legislators cut out eight lakes due to public opposition. Nelems said he is concerned legislators will now try to add some of those lakes to the law.
makes you wonder where we get these tools;
Johnny Hardwick Circuit Court Judge (D)
I wonder what his campaign contributions look like...
"legal bill debt"? Just how much is still owed?
Karen is going to set up a new Paypal account tomorrow for secure contibutions. I just got off the phone with Capt Kirk's friend,they will erase our current debt tomorrow. But he said they cannot do it all,so I am officially, and humbly,. asking for donations again. Together with the power of OSO,mabe we can prevail. First step is to get a stay,where the law will not be immediately enforced,then file for an appeal. Peace,out.
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