Location: Toms River, NJ
Posts: 17
speed limits your state could be next

Next week we will make an announcement for an all out push!! We will need everyone's help and support!! Including letters, phonecalls, appearances.....

Tony Esposito at Mercury Racing has also agreed to join our cause and is the first of many to join our soon to be COALITION!

STAY TUNED!!!!!!!!

[email protected]


On January 8th @ State Police Headquarters in West Trenton there will be a meeting (a very important meeting) on a bill that the Legislation is going to try to slip by! If we don't help, our waterways will never be the same. We need a big turn out on this one, the more folks that show up in favor of (NO SPEEDLIMITS) the better. The only way to stop the goverment is to show up and say NO TO SPEEDLIMITS and yes to education!
For the folks that think this will never happen. Take a good look at Florida!

Frank Civatano

Asbury Park Press

Boating speed limits. For safety or personal reasons?

I attended the first committee meeting regarding the proposed speed limit on tidal waters in and around the state of NJ. I expected to hear from this committee how the rate of boating accidents has increased and that speed over 30mph was the main reason for the rise in accidents. I expected to hear facts and see charts or graphs that clearly showed the need for enacting a speed limit statewide.

I was astonished to learn that there was no safety consideration as the basis for this pending action. In fact, as unbelievable as it sounds, the commission never even asked the State Police or Coast Guard to compile any statistics regarding boating accidents. A prudent person would think that any new proposed law would be in reaction to an existing problem. The fact is that there has been a continual decrease in boating accidents over the last 20 years even though the number of boats on the water has increased.

Yes, the bay is busy on weekends and the new breed of boats are faster and more efficient that the older ones. This is called technological progress, something that this country strives on. I know some people are against progress and would like to see time stand still in a certain endearing era, but thatís not reality.

The truth is, Mr. Brown (the committee chairman) is catering to his friends that want to race their sailboats in a tranquil setting and not be disturbed by offensive powerboats that transit the rivers and bays in our area. During the meeting, this action quickly went from a speed limit on all tidal waters to a speed limit on the Toms River and Metedeconk rivers, as those are the places where sail boat races happen every weekend throughout the summer. At least those are the areas where Mr. Brown has friends. The problem seems to be that the sailboat racers are tired of having pleasure boats cut through their racecourse. What they seem to forget is that when the racecourse markers are placed on either side of the channel, there is no other way to get past the racecourse other than to go through it. Also, it is almost impossible to tell where the racecourse is and if a race is in progress or not. While sailboats under sail power enjoy a right of way under any condition, this doesnít give them the right to intentionally block traffic in a marked channel.

I guess people are pointing toward Cigarette style boats, as they are an easy target to hit. Please consider that there are many outboard powered fishing boats that can easily exceed 50mph. Should these fishermen be required to stay under 30mph when traveling across the bay at 6am with no other boats in sight?

While some people donít like the sound of these fast boats, others like myself find the sound of a finely tuned high performance engine to be music to my ears. Yes, we are all different but we need to compromise to exist together with our different opinions, our likes and dislikes.

Before a speed limit can be put into effect, shouldnít it be mandatory that boats have accurate speedometers? Some boats donít have speedometers and the ones that do often donít work due to their inherent poor design. A new breed of GPS speedometer is now available at a premium price but very few boats have these in place. How can a speed limit be put in place when most boats can tell how fast they are going?

So, here is my solution. If the sailboat racers want to have a secure racecourse, they should have a fleet of marked volunteer boats that surround the racecourse to wave off oncoming traffic. This is the exact method that the offshore racers use to secure their racecourses. Additionally, sailboat racecourses should never force the racers to cross the channel even during a tacking maneuver. Finally, sailboat racecourses need to provide for the safe passage of other boats, either sail or power. Anything less is just plain inconsiderate of fellow boaters who has the same right to enjoy the waters surrounding our area. It also came out at the meeting that the sail boaters never bother to file a race course plan with the Marine Police or Coast Guard prior to there events. They just drop the markers in a location that is favorable to the dayís prevailing winds and start racing. On the flip side, the powerboat races and poker run club always file a plan months ahead of time with the given authorities and take their guidance should they not approve of the course location or design.

The real answer to safer boating lies in mandatory licensing and testing. How ridiculous is it that someone with a pocket full of money can buy a boat and then run it with no formal training. These untrained boaters donít realize that there are existing rules of the road that govern how two boats should react in a situation where their paths cross. Or that a boat that has the tide on their stern has the right of way over a boat headed into the current. Driving a boat is very different than driving a car and the same amount of training should be given to new boaters regardless of age.

The rub is that this committee doesnít have the authority to institute mandatory licensing because itís beyond their scope of authority. So they are looking to fix a problem that doesnít exist by making rules that are within their scope of authority. Bureaucracy at itís finest. I can only hope that some members of this committee can see what is really happening here and allow all people to enjoy the bay and rivers on an equal basis.

On a final note, in a time of recession, should the government do anything to harm an industry that is already under financial pressure? I would think not.

Ron Polli

Member - NJ Offshore Powerboat Racing Association




Hello Everyone,

Here is the latest update on what is going on and our INCREASED PRESSURE GAMEPLAN:

1) I had a great interview with Brett Becker of Powerboat Magazine a few days ago. Brett will be talking about the speed limits in the February Issue of Powerboat. This will continue to help get the message out!

2) Dave Patnaude (President of NJ Performance Powerboat Club) will be on the Bob Levy Show this Sunday Morning Dec.15th. (thanks to NJPPC member Jerry Monroe) The Bob Levy show is on 92.7 WOBM here in Ocean County. The talk show on speed limits should start around 8-9am. CALL IN AND VOICE YOUR SUPPORT !!! 732-237-9626 is the phone number for the radio station.


1) WE NEED YOU TO ATTEND THE NEXT BOATING REGULATION COMMISSION MEETING! Meeting Date: January 8th @ 10am. State Police Headquarters, West Trenton, NJ We really need to pack the room with our presence at this meeting. DO NOT TAKE THE ISSUE LIGHTLY! We got the the ball rolling. Bring family, friends, anyone and everyone who can make the meeting. Need directions, our friends at Save Barnegat Bay have been nice enough to put directions on their website: http://www.savebarnegatbay.org/news_74.shtml
They are pushing for supporters to come out - we need to out number them 10-1!

2) Who is going to win this debate? Answer: The group with the louder voice! Continue to write letters and CALL your representatives!!! The following people to voice your opposition to speed limits on the bay:

Heading Assembly Panel On Safe Boating
620 W. Lacey Road Forked River, N.J. 08731
Phone Number: (609) 693-6700 Fax: 693-2469

Assemblyman Robert J. Smith, II (D) (Assistant Majority Whip)
DISTRICT OFFICE ADDRESS: 110-F Greentree Road Turnersville, NJ 08012
PHONE NUMBER: (856) 232-6700

Assemblyman James W. Holzapfel (R)
DISTRICT OFFICE ADDRESS: 852 Highway 70 Brick, NJ 08724
PHONE NUMBER: (732) 840-9028 E-MAIL ADDRESS [email protected]

Assemblyman Albio Sires (D)(Speaker)
DISTRICT OFFICE ADDRESS: 303 58th Street, West New York, NJ 07093
PHONE NUMBER: (201) 854-0900

Thank you for your support,

[email protected]

If anyone has information they would like to add to this update page, please email it to: [email protected]