Archive for » February 16th, 2012«

State proposes hiking boat fees

The Department of Natural Resources is proposing drastic increases in boat registration fees to raise money for dredging, buoy maintenance, ice-breaking and other water projects.

 

“We do not have sufficient funds to support the needs that we have for boating in Maryland,” said Bob Gaudette, who supervises boating programs for the DNR.

Right now, boaters pay $24 every two years to register their boats.

Under the proposal, the registration fee would be multiplied many times over, depending on the size of the boat.

The fees would be phased in. By 2016, owners of small boats less than 16 feet would pay $50 every two years. Other fees would be $125 for boats from 16 to 32 feet, $250 for boats from 32 feet to 45 feet, and $500 for boats from 45 feet to 65 feet. For the largest boats of all — more than 65 feet — the fee would be $700.

The fees would apply to boats that aren’t registered in Maryland, but are state-documented vessels because they are primarily used here.

The proposal removes an exemption for sailboats that don’t also have motors. Under the proposal, all sailboats 16 feet or larger must register, whether they have a motor or not.

There also would be a new, voluntary registration for canoes, kayaks and paddleboats that would cost $12 every two years. About 57,000 small, nonmotorized boats would be eligible statewide.

Anne Arundel County would be the state jurisdiction most heavily affected by the new rules. There are 36,348 registered boats here, more than in any other county.

If boat ownership stays steady at about 200,000 boats, the new fees would bring in $13.2 million per year. Right now, boating registration generates $2.1 million for the state annually.

But even the proposed increases wouldn’t be enough to plug the boating services budget holes at DNR.

The DNR’s boating programs get most of their money from the 5 percent excise tax paid when boats are sold.

As the economy has faltered, boat sales have plummeted. That means less excise tax money going to the state.

“I am completely at the whim of the marketplaces. If boat sales go up, I have money. If boat sales go down, I don’t have money,” Gaudette said.

But the state still has a long list of boating-related projects. That list could soon get longer, since the Army Corps of Engineers announced recently that it can no longer afford as many dredging projects.

The state has about $15 million available for boating projects each year, but an annual list of $41 million worth of work.

Even if the registration fee increases are approved by lawmakers, the DNR still will be short.

“This gets us a little less than halfway there,” Gaudette said. “We’re not going for the moon here. We’re trying to cover the most critical of our projects.”

The projects include maintaining thousands of buoys, markers and signs; maintaining 265 public boating channels; keeping channels free of ice in the winter; having Natural Resources Police conduct boating safety checks; removing abandoned boats; and maintaining public boating facilities.

The proposal is being introduced to the General Assembly today.

DNR officials acknowledged that they may face opposition. Lawmakers have been wary of fee and tax increases and many are already frustrated about Gov. Martin O’Malley’s proposal to apply the 6 percent sales tax to gasoline purchases.

Olivia Campbell Andersen, the DNR’s lobbyist, said many boating fees haven’t been changed in decades. And the money would go to projects that will benefit those who pay the fees.

“People recognize the great need for services that these funds provide,” she said. “We want to keep boating thriving and safe in Maryland.”

A hearing has not yet been scheduled.


pwood@capgaznews.com
www.twitter.com/pwoodreporter


Similar news:

Taiwan boat fined for shark finning in Palau


Feb 16, 2012, 10:12 GMT

Palau designated its territorial waters a shark sanctuary in 2009 following reports that global shark populations are being decimated by high demand for shark fins, a traditional delicacy in Chinese cuisine.

Palauan authorities boarded Taiwan’s Sheng Chi Hui No. 7 in December after a Greenpeace helicopter shot photos of the boat’s crew hauling sharks onto the deck.

The island nation had signed an agreement with Greenpeace only days before to help patrol over 600,000 square kilometres of water.

In addition to the fine, the boat will now be banned from fishing in Palau’s waters for one year.

‘Now we are calling on the Taiwanese government – as the responsible flag state – to better regulate its fishing industry,’ Lagi Toribau, the head of Greenpeace’s oceans team, said.

The Taiwan Fisheries Agency said they have warned their fleet against catching sharks in Palau.

‘We have been using our channels to encourage our boats to abide by the law in foreign countries, and we hope this is an isolated case,’ an agency spokesman said to dpa. ‘We will not duck responsibility, nor will we protect our boats if they are guilty.’

The global demand for sharks has boomed as Asia’s economy grows and ethnic Chinese increasingly desire to serve shark fin soup at weddings and banquets to show off their wealth. Each bowl of soup can fetch up to 100 US dollars.

The Pew Environmental Group estimates that the fishing industry kills up to 73 million sharks annually, resulting in 30 per cent of shark species being threatened or near-threatened with extinction.

Taiwan catches 47,635 tonnes of shark per year, putting it in fourth place globally, according to Pew.

‘;
PrintArticle();//–

Taipei – The Pacific island nation of Palau has fined a Taiwanese fishing boat 65,000 US dollars for illegally catching sharks in its waters, according to the environmental group Greenpeace on Thursday.

Palau designated its territorial waters a shark sanctuary in 2009 following reports that global shark populations are being decimated by high demand for shark fins, a traditional delicacy in Chinese cuisine.

Palauan authorities boarded Taiwan’s Sheng Chi Hui No. 7 in December after a Greenpeace helicopter shot photos of the boat’s crew hauling sharks onto the deck.

The island nation had signed an agreement with Greenpeace only days before to help patrol over 600,000 square kilometres of water.

In addition to the fine, the boat will now be banned from fishing in Palau’s waters for one year.

‘Now we are calling on the Taiwanese government – as the responsible flag state – to better regulate its fishing industry,’ Lagi Toribau, the head of Greenpeace’s oceans team, said.

The Taiwan Fisheries Agency said they have warned their fleet against catching sharks in Palau.

‘We have been using our channels to encourage our boats to abide by the law in foreign countries, and we hope this is an isolated case,’ an agency spokesman said to dpa. ‘We will not duck responsibility, nor will we protect our boats if they are guilty.’

The global demand for sharks has boomed as Asia’s economy grows and ethnic Chinese increasingly desire to serve shark fin soup at weddings and banquets to show off their wealth. Each bowl of soup can fetch up to 100 US dollars.

The Pew Environmental Group estimates that the fishing industry kills up to 73 million sharks annually, resulting in 30 per cent of shark species being threatened or near-threatened with extinction.

Taiwan catches 47,635 tonnes of shark per year, putting it in fourth place globally, according to Pew.


Similar news:

Pier 57 merger joins two boat dealers

Pier 57 merger joins two boat dealers


Posted on 16 February 2012


Attention: open in a new window.Print

ShareShare on LinkedIn

Chicago-based Shogren Performance Marine merged with Pier 57, a factory authorized dealer for MTI and Cigarette Powerboats in Counce, Tenn.

From its headquarters, Shogren will take over day-to-day operation of the new company — which will be named Pier 57 — and will maintain a sales presence in Counce.

“We’re very excited about this opportunity,” Shogren Performance Marine founder Scott Sjogren said in a statement. “The new Pier 57 is committed to being the best and biggest dealer ever, where the buying, selling, servicing and overall client experience will be second to none.”

The company said staffing within the merged organization will remain the same.

“We chose to adopt the Pier 57 name with our merger because of its well-known brand position and for long-term branding opportunities we see within the high-performance powerboat industry. This collaboration begins a new chapter — leveraging our combined strengths and well-known histories,” Sjogren added.

The combination gives boaters a single point of exclusive access to Cigarette, MTI, Checkmate, MYCO, Eagle and Mercury engines, along with used boats, the company said.

“I feel very good about the merger of our businesses. Scott’s a very driven and motivated guy, and he’ll bring a ton of new energy to things,” Pier 57 founder David Woods said in a statement. “We’re gonna keep doing what we do well. But now we’re doing it together, which makes it even better.”

Add your comment

Your name:

Required, screen names acceptable

Your email:

Required, will not be published

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive. For more information, please see our Comments Policy.:

 

Word verification:


<!–

If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact us.

–>


Similar news:

Italian ship fires on Indian fishing boat, 2 dead – AP

An Italian cargo ship fired at an Indian fishing boat that it mistook for a pirate vessel, killing two fishermen, India’s navy said Thursday.


    1. A laid-back Yankee finds trouble in Putin’s court


    2. Linsanity — or ‘linfengkuang’ — hits China


    3. Priscilla’s story: Tracing roots back to slave island


    4. Image:


      Muscatine Journal


      China’s president-in-waiting Xi Jinping returns to Iowa


    5. RI schools prove poverty is no barrier to success


    6. Image: Huguette Clark Gower


      AP file


      Family of heiress Clark claims fraud by nurse, others



    7. Janssen Products, LP


      Amid shortages, hospitals trash scarce drugs

The ship identified as the Enrica Lexie fired at the fishermen in waters off India’s southern Kerala state on Wednesday, a navy statement said.

The Indian coast guard and navy vessels escorted the Italian ship to the nearby port city of Kochi and were questioning the captain and crew.

The owner of the fishing vessel, who goes by the single name Freddy, said Thursday the firing was unprovoked. The boat was fishing when the ship opened fire, killing the two fishermen instantly, he said.

Nine other fishermen onboard the craft survived.

Piracy has emerged as a major threat to merchant ships traversing the sea lanes of the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea. Pirates based in Somalia have been hijacking ships and holding the vessels and their crew for ransom.

Several countries, including India, allow ship owners to deploy armed security guards on ships. Ship owners say the move has proved effective and prevented hijackings.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Similar news:

Volvo Ocean Race: 'Flotilla holiday' or ultimate sporting challenge? The changing face of round the world sailing

From the first race in 1973-74 to the seventh in 1997-98, the fleet headed off
to Cape Town from Portsmouth or Southampton then went deep into the Southern
Ocean across to Australia or New Zealand.

From there it was into iceberg alley for a second head-banging session before
rounding Cape Horn for the next stop in South America, then a stop in North
America and the final transatlantic dash back to Britain.

As the complexion of the event changed, with the move from Corinthian to
professional competition, organisers began to welcome the corporate dollar
which in the years since 1998 has impacted dramatically on the route.

The sale of the race in 2001 by British brewers Whitbread to Swedish car
makers Volvo saw new markets added to the schedule and ports were invited to
bid for stopovers to swell the coffers further with some successful bidders,
such as Abu Dhabi also raising sailing campaigns for the race.

India, China, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates have all now made
appearances on the race schedule with varying degrees of success but
detractors say the race has turned into a ‘flotilla holiday’ rather than a
no holds barred sporting challenge.

“It feels like the race has prostituted its self out and is now paying a heavy
price,” said one former sailor.

“The racing is now not only extremely dull but also follows a crazy schedule
requiring massive shore crews. How can you call it a Round the World Race
when it passes North of Australia!”

Grant Dalton, the renowned New Zealand skipper who now manages most of the
Kiwi’s big budget sailing projects says the race has had to be flexible to
survive.

“For the sailors, they can’t remember the old course anyway so it makes
no difference to them,” he said.

No one knows whether the fleet of six boats, the smallest in the event’s
history, is a function of the world economic climate where sponsors have
reined in their budgets or if the changing face of round the world yacht
racing has led to a decline in interest.

But one thing is for sure. Had it not been for the race organiser’s tireless
efforts to excite and serve commercial interests around the world, there
would be no round the world race.


Similar news:

Boating industry sees smooth sailing ahead – The News

<!–Saxotech Paragraph Count: 12
–>

Officials connected to the Miami International Boat Show are beginning to smile a bit more these days.

The happier faces are caused by glimmers of better economic news in the boating industry.

Cathy Rick-Joule, vice president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association Boat Shows Division and the Miami show manager, said based on boat shows that took place earlier this year in other parts of the country, buyers are out and sales have improved across the board.

According to the latest figures from the manufacturers association, entry-level buyers and boaters looking for new fishing and family cruising boats, are leading a recovery for the industry.

Through the second quarter of 2011, retail sales of outboard boats, which include aluminum fishing and pontoon boats, and small cruising boats are up 6 percent over last year.

Other news that buoys hopes of the boating industry include the fact that of the 231.5 million adults living in the U.S. in 2010, 32 percent, or 75 million people, went boating. The NMMA said this is the highest proportion of participation since 1999, when 33.4 percent of adults were boating participants.

Other trends:

Sales of new outboard boats, including aluminum fishing, pontoon, and small fiberglass cruising boats, are up 6 percent through the second quarter of 2011.

Manufacturers anticipate continued growth in entry-level outboard fishing and cruising boats; through September shipments to dealers are up 18 percent over last year.

Manufacturers are betting on a growing interest in ski and wakeboard boats; through September, shipments to dealers are up 20 percent over last year.

Manufacturers are designing boats that are easier and more fun to use (joystick docking, fish finders, built-in GPS), more affordable (improved fuel efficiency), environmentally friendly (reduced emissions), and offer custom-options to suit individual needs (wakeboard/ski mounts, fishing mounts, specialized sound systems).

Supporting this final statistic, Terry Sovo, director of sales and marketing at Nor-Tech Hi-Performance Boats, said his company is focusing on a new style of boat, more family friendly with a hybrid center console design. “We have quite a bit new and exciting,” Sovo said.


Similar news:

Martinac celebrates new contract

Tacoma’s J.M. Martinac Shipbuilding Co. is back in the fishing boat business.

The Foss Waterway shipyard will build its first fishing vessel since 1991 for Lynden-based Alaskan Leader Fisheries, that company announced this week.

The 88-year-old shipyard spent much of its existence building fishing boats for the Alaska fisheries business and for the tuna fishing industry, but in recent years has specialized in tugboat construction.

The shipyard said the new project will allow it to double its payroll to 100 workers.

The 184-foot long Northern Leader will be the largest fishing boat built in the Pacific Northwest in more than 20 years. The boat is scheduled to be delivered to the fishing company in the spring of next year.

The Northern Leader will utilize the latest diesel-electric technology to power the boat’s refrigeration, lighting and other systems as well as its highly-flexible propulsion system, said Martinac vice president Jonathan Platt.

The propulsion system will use two Z-drive propulsion units. Those units, which can swivel in any direction, make the boat more maneuverable and efficient. They are the same kind of propulsion units used in Martinac’s latest tugboats.

Martinac competed for the contract with other shipyards in the Northwest and around the country. Unionized shipyards such as Martinac often have difficulty beating the prices offered by nonunion shipyards in the South. Alaskan Leader said Martinac’s price was competitive. The construction cost was pegged at $25 million.

For Martinac, the fishing vessel contract comes at an opportune time.

Its contract for a series of tugboats for Navy use is winding down. The shipyard sat idle from mid-2001 to 2006 after the market tugs and tuna boats dried up.

Since 2006, the shipyard has built a dozen tugboats for private owners and for the Navy. The shipyard constructed wooden fishing vessels during its early years from 1924 through the beginning of World War II when it diversified into building mine sweepers and military patrol craft. From 1966 through the early ’90s, the shipyard built large tuna boats for the San Diego-based U.S. tuna industry. That business disappeared when the tuna fishing business moved offshore to Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand.

Alaskan Leader Fisheries will use the new boat for long-line fisheries for cod and sable fish in Alaska waters. The new boat will have the capacity to process and freeze 1.87 million pounds of fish.

The vessel catches fish using miles-long lines with baited hooks which are set out and then retrieved.

The vessel will have the capability of processing much of what older vessels discarded as waste into usable products. The cods’ livers will be processed for oil and the fish heads will be ground up for meal.

Under the old system for limiting catches, fishing companies competed during a short open season to land and process as many fish as possible in a limited period. That gave the boats and the people who manned them no time to process the less valuable byproducts of the fish.

Under a new system established by fisheries regulators, each fishing operation has a quota of fish to catch and a much longer time in which to accomplish its task. That gives fish processors more time to deal with what was formerly waste from the processing. Alaskan Leader has three boats under its ownership, one of which was damaged in a fire at sea last year.

John Gillie: 253-597-8663 john.gillie@thenewstribune.com


Similar news:

Volvo Ocean Race: 'Flotilla route' or ultimate sporting challenge? The changing face of round the world sailing

From there it was into iceberg alley for a second head-banging session before
rounding Cape Horn for the next stop in South America, then a stop in North
America and the final transatlantic dash back to Britain.

As the complexion of the event changed, with the move from Corinthian to
professional competition, organisers began to welcome the corporate dollar
which in the years since 1998 has impacted dramatically on the route.

The sale of the race in 2001 by British brewers Whitbread to Swedish car
makers Volvo saw new markets added to the schedule and ports were invited to
bid for stopovers to swell the coffers further with some successful bidders,
such as Abu Dhabi also raising sailing campaigns for the race.

India, China, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates have all now made
appearances on the race schedule with varying degrees of success but
detractors say the race has turned into a ‘flotilla holiday’ rather than a
no holds barred sporting challenge.

“It feels like the race has prostituted its self out and is now paying a heavy
price,” said one former sailor.

“The racing is now not only extremely dull but also follows a crazy schedule
requiring massive shore crews. How can you call it a Round the World Race
when it passes North of Australia!”

Grant Dalton, the renowned New Zealand skipper who now manages most of the
Kiwi’s big budget sailing projects says the race has had to be flexible to
survive.

“For the sailors, they can’t remember the old course anyway so it makes
no difference to them,” he said.

No one knows whether the fleet of six boats, the smallest in the event’s
history, is a function of the world economic climate where sponsors have
reined in their budgets or if the changing face of round the world yacht
racing has led to a decline in interest.

But one thing is for sure. Had it not been for the race organiser’s tireless
efforts to excite and serve commercial interests around the world, there
would be no round the world race.


Similar news:

New England Boat Show Opens in Boston

Certainly one of the most disposable income purchases is a recreational boat. If this segment of the economy shows even modest expansion, critics will applaud as the investment in boating — and the purchase of a new family boat — is a significant expression of personal confidence.

Opening day crowds, braving a wintry weekend debut, were solidly positive as this year’s version of New England’s largest indoor boat show kicked off Saturday in Boston. This year’s show runs through Feb. 18 at the Boston Convention Center.

Boating has become a family experience for many participants and this year’s show went long on displaying the numerous virtues of enjoying time on New England’s vast assortment of lakes and ponds as well as our extensive coastline.

Potential buyers are treated to expansive displays of the latest Yamaha twin-jet-driven boats packed with performance features and the kind of low-draft access that is extremely convenient around the beach. Strikingly handsome bow-riders from premium makers Cobalt and Chris Craft pursue the premium end of this family-friendly market, while SeaDoo and SeaRay each produce top-selling models that capture a variety of budgets. SeaRay’s latest black-hulled SLX250 proved to be one of the show’s more stunning models, a sleek do-it-all family ski/tube/wakeboard boat that packs the high quality ratings that SeaRay has accumulated.

Boat deals abound at the show as the industry banks on recording the majority of its new boat sales at visual displays just like the Boston show. Coastal boaters are familiar with Wellcraft; its top-selling 252 Coastal was over $25,000 off the suggested price of $119,630 with twin Yamaha 150-hp outboards. SeaRay’s 260 Sundancer, a New England favorite for years, lists for $136,395 but was on sale for ‘only’ $99,900 with a 300-hp 350-MAG I/O engine.

There are also the big cruisers at the show, boats such as Formula’s 35-foot 350SS which carries a 10-foot-9-inch beam and twin 8.2-liter MAG V-8 engines. The Formula was a cool $148,000 off from list price with a show special of $274,900.

Nearby was Maine’s own Back Cove 30, one of the more luxurious vessels on display. Built in Rockland, the Back Cove uses a typical Downeast-style hull, yet it sports the latest in premium cruising amenities. Several ‘shoppers’ were pleased, and proud, to learn that the Back Cove is built in Maine. Look for the Back Cove at next month’s Portland Boat Show, as there is apparently no shortage of customers waiting for this yacht.

For sailors, Hunter’s 33-foot sailboat, Cruising Magazine’s Boat of the Year in the under 35-foot class, makes a dramatic statement. This benchmark sailboat was featured for $127,650, or only $646 a month.

If that seems beyond your household budget — and beyond your confidence level — there are hundreds of smaller boats, inflatables and sail-craft on display. A large pond has been built inside the hall to feature Chesapeake Performance’s radio-controlled sailboats, starting at $450, plus nearby there is the trailerable Windrider catamaran for only $8,250.

For lake boaters, Premier’s display of its vast pontoon boat lineup blew everyone else away. Featuring three-tubes below, the Premier boats come with optional in-board engines, camper packages, plus second-tier platforms for entertaining. There is even a model with a full galley and wet-bar with upscale audio, overhead atmosphere lites and a sink. Prices range from $17,000 to over $60,000 for these performance pontoons.

From huge displays for Grady White, Boston Whaler, Zodiac and Monterey to CMD’s replacement diesel engines and more navigational aids than you’ll ever expect to need, the New England Boat Show has a display to whet your appetite to get back onto the water this year.

For more maritime news, pick up a copy of The Ellsworth American.


Similar news:

Asian Carp Shooting? Illinois Lawmakers Suggest Gun Owners Fire At Invasive Species From Their Boats

As the Great Lakes region continues to look for ways to stop plankton-gobbling Asian Carp from infesting our lakes and rivers, the Illinois General Assembly is considering a rather unconventional approach to fighting the invasive species: shooting them.

Last week, Illinois Rep. Dave Winters (R-Shirland) introduced a bill that would amend the Fish and Aquatic Life Code, allowing registered gun owners in the state to shoot Asian carp “with a shotgun off of a motorboat in the Illinois River beginning with the 2013 licensing year.” The bill says the Department of Natural Resources would be able to regulate and administer the pilot program.

“Shotguns, jumping fish, and boats speeding along on bumpy water. What could go wrong?” Chicagoist wrote Friday, adding that Winters’ bill is not the only strange solution to carp locals have come up with:

… there are already guys cruising the Illinois River in makeshift armor, swinging samurai swords and Wolverine gloves at Asian carp off of water skis. And shooting arrows at the flying fish is a big enough sport that there has already been at least one bow hunting cover model accident near Peoria.

Since jumping carp have infested the Illinois River, several carp-fighting groups have popped up. The man behind the Peoria Carp Hunters says his group participates in “bowfishing on steroids,” and videos of “Extreme Aerial Bowfishing” have circulated on YouTube. In one case, a woman’s jaw was broken when a carp jumped into her face from the water while she was bow hunting.

While some say Asian carp is too boney and fishy for American taste buds, other groups hope that perception will change. Last year, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources held a public tasting event starring a Louisiana chef turned advocate to start a campaign that may lead to feeding the invasive species to the growing number of people facing hunger.

“Fish translates to one thing: food,” said Chef Philippe Parola. “It’s one of the greatest natural resources we have.”

As people shoot, catch and eat the carp, the the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other environmental groups have been working toward a more permanent solution to stopping the fish. They hope an electric fish barrier near Chicago and an early-warning system that detects carp DNA in waterways can prevent the fish from invading the Great Lakes.

Imported from China, the carp escaped into the Mississippi from Deep South fish farms and sewage lagoons in the early 1970s. They’ve fanned out across dozens of rivers, creeks, ponds and reservoirs. Bighead carp have turned up in 26 states and silver carp, the other Asian species on the Great Lakes’ doorstep, in 17 states.

The bighead can reach up to 4 feet long and 100 pounds, while silver carp are notorious for hurtling from the water like missiles when startled, at times slamming into boaters with enough force to shatter bones. Biologists say it’s uncertain how much damage they would do if established in the lakes. But under a worst-case scenario, they would unravel the food web by consuming huge amounts of plankton – tiny plants and animals on which most fish rely at some stage of life.

WATCH as Asian carp surprise a family as they drove their motorboat down the Spoon River of Illinois over the summer:

“;
var coords = [-5, -72];
// display fb-bubble
FloatingPrompt.embed(this, html, undefined, ‘top’, {fp_intersects:1, timeout_remove:2000,ignore_arrow: true, width:236, add_xy:coords, class_name: ‘clear-overlay’});
});


Similar news: