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Clean Boating Act--A WIN for Rec. Boaters!

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Old 04-22-2008, 07:02 PM
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Done. Thanks for the heads up Terry.
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Old 04-22-2008, 07:36 PM
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Done I think
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Old 04-22-2008, 08:12 PM
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done
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Old 04-22-2008, 09:32 PM
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Done
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Old 04-22-2008, 11:10 PM
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Old 04-22-2008, 11:18 PM
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Old 04-23-2008, 06:14 PM
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Got my responce back today from Senator Clinton,

Dear Mr. Gxxxx:



Thank you for writing about the Recreational Boating Act of 2007 (S.2067). The thoughts and concerns of my New York constituents are very important to me. I thank you for taking the time to share them with me. Please know that as I participate in discussions on the issues before the United States Senate, your thoughts and the opinions of all who write are given careful consideration.



Thank you again for taking the time to write. Please check my website http://clinton.senate .gov for updates on the issues being considered by the Senate.



Sincerely,

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton
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Old 04-23-2008, 06:40 PM
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Dear Mr. xxx:

Thank you for contacting me regarding exemptions from Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations for recreational boating. Currently, recreational boaters do not need to obtain operating permits from the EPA, but a recent court decision threatens to eliminate this exemption in September 2008.

I introduced the Clean Boating Act of 2008 (S. 2766) to ensure that recreational boaters can operate as they always have--without EPA permits. To help protect the health of the nation's waterways, on which recreational boaters depend, the bill also would require the EPA to examine best-management practices for boaters. The bill is pending before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee whose chair, Senator Boxer, is one of several bipartisan cosponsors.

I am committed to preserving Florida’s waterways without placing an undue burden on recreational boaters. I appreciate your interest in this issue, and I hope you will not hesitate to contact me in the future.



P.S. From time to time, I compile electronic news briefs highlighting key issues and hot topics of particular importance to Floridians. If you'd like to receive these e-briefs, visit my Web site and sign up for them at http://billnelson.senate.gov/news/ebriefs.cfm
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Old 04-24-2008, 03:42 AM
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Thank you for contacting me with your concerns about proposed regulatory changes that may impact recreational boating. I appreciate hearing from you.



In September 2006, a California District Court ruled that boats were subject to regulation for the incidental discharge of pollutants under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act. Under Section 404, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) operates a system of discharge permits known as the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES). In the past, the EPA applied NPDES regulations to land-based sources of water pollution, such as sewage treatment plants and industrial facilities, but exempted commercial and recreational vessels from the permit process.



The suit that led to the ruling dealt specifically with the discharge of ballast water by commercial ships. Commercial vessels often take on significant amounts of water for the purpose of maintaining stability. This ballast water, which is pumped out of the ship during its voyage or at its destination, can contain exotic species that drive out native wildlife and upset the natural balance of a local ecosystem. The EPA estimates that 30 percent of invasive species have been introduced in the Great Lakes through ballast water. For example, the release of ballast water is thought to be responsible for the local invasion of zebra mussels.



The court's ruling extended NPDES regulations more broadly to all vessels and any incidental discharge of pollutants. The EPA has expressed concern over the court's decision, citing serious obstacles to monitoring and enforcing these newly applied regulations. One potential problem raised by the agency is that NPDES permit requirements differ from state to state. Many boaters travel in waters off the coasts of multiple states and would be forced to apply for multiple discharge permits.



We should address the issue of ballast water and the introduction of aquatic invasive species. Any new regulations, however, should seek to avoid any unfair or unnecessary burdens on recreational boaters.



The Clean Boating Act of 2008 (S. 2766) would exempt recreational vessels, including charter boats, from the requirements of the NPDES permit process. In addition, the measure lays out a three-year framework to determine if discharge management practices should be required of recreational boats.



The Clean Boating Act has been referred to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. I am not a member of this committee, but I will keep your support for S. 2766 in mind in case the bill is brought to the Senate floor for a vote.



Thank you again for contacting me. Please feel free to keep in touch.



Sincerely,

Richard J. Durbin

United States Senator



RJD/ec



P.S. If you are ever visiting Washington, please feel free to join me and other members of the Illinois Congressional delegation at our weekly constituent coffee. When the Senate is in session, we provide coffee and donuts every Thursday at 8:30 a.m. as we hear what is on the minds of Illinoisans and respond to your questions. We would welcome your participation. Please call my D.C. office for more details.
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Old 04-24-2008, 10:12 AM
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Got this reply from Florida : (I'm posting only the part I thought everyone would like to know)

I introduced the Clean Boating Act of 2008 (S. 2766) to ensure that recreational boaters can operate as they always have--without EPA permits. To help protect the health of the nation's waterways, on which recreational boaters depend, the bill also would require the EPA to examine best-management practices for boaters. The bill is pending before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee whose chair, Senator Boxer, is one of several bipartisan cosponsors.
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