The Oregon State Marine Board recently announced its new and proposed regulations for the lower Willamette River. Some of these regulations will be voted on by the board at the end of the month, and it’s important that you share your stance on these regulations by January 24.

The OSMB has been removing waterway access at a staggering pace and it will continue to do so without the voice of the boating community. If these new regulations pass, there will be a 13-mile wakesurf restriction from downtown Portland to the Oregon City falls, as well as significant restrictions for other towed sports in the area.

New restrictions passed by the OSMB in October
  • Pass-through zone (no towed sports) from the Hawthorne Bridge south to northern Ross Island
  • Pass-through zone on the east side of Ross Island
  • Pass-through zone from southern Ross Island to the south edge of Waverly Marina
Proposed restrictions being voted on at the end of January
  • Additional pass-through zone on the west side of Ross Island
  • Buffer zones from Waverly Marina to the Oregon City falls

    – Slow/no wake 100′ from docks

    – Wakeboarding must be 200′ from docks

    – No wakesurfing

How you can help stop these new regulations
  • Send the OSMB a letter by January 24 stating your opposition to these proposed rules. Email your testimony to jennifer.cooper@oregon.gov.
  • Reach out to your state representative and senator. You can find yours here.
  • Encourage your friends and neighbors via social media and email to share their stance.
Encouraged key points to consider in your testimony
  • State waterways belong to the entire community, not just a few select groups.
  • The proposed regulations favor paddlers and other lightweight watercraft users of the boating public at the direct expense of motorboat access and enjoyment.
  • Education and enforcement, not exclusion and overregulation, is the right way to create a safe river for all.
  • The proposed regulations will increase congestion and exacerbate any existing safety hazards on other parts of the Willamette River.
  • Recreational boating helps support 5,993 Oregon jobs and 419 businesses. Regulations like these will decimate yet another small business sector critical to our local economy.

We need your support to defeat these misguided and egregious regulations. It’s crucial that boating enthusiasts are aware of the proposed regulations and share their stance with the OSMB by the deadline of January 24. We have partnered with other local dealers and boat manufacturers to retain legal counsel, a marketing and communications firm and lobbyists to help with this. Even with those resources, every voice makes a difference.

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about this, please feel free to contact us: info@activeh2o.com.

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