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Weekly 5: Proposal to close Florida bridge raises boating concerns

By Jonathan Sweet

The BI Weekly 5 is a collection of tips, news and data affecting the boating industry this week. Be sure to look for the BI Weekly 5 every week on BoatingIndustry.com.

1. Proposal to close Florida bridge raises boating concerns

The closure of a drawbridge in downtown Fort Lauderdale in February could cost local boating businesses hundreds of thousands of dollars, the Sun Sentinel reported.

All Aboard Florida plans to close the Florida East Coast Railway bridge to marine traffic from Feb. 11 to Feb. 22 to make $5 million in repairs, Phil Purcell, CEO and executive director of the Marine Industries Association of South Florida, told the paper. The bridge is is four feet above the New River when lowered.

The New River is the main artery used by boats traveling from the shipyards to the Intracoastal and Atlantic Ocean, according to the paper. Local businesses have also raised concerns about the bridge blocking boats from getting to and from the Miami International Boat Show

2. President signs Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act

President Obama signed the Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation Act Friday, clearing the way for water-resource infrastructure projects across the country.

The WINN includes the Water Resources Development Act of 2016, an important legislative priority for the marine industry.

3. NMMA supports nomination of Rep. Ryan Zinke for Interior Secretary

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump has nominated Rep. Ryan Zinke, R-Mont., for Secretary of the Interior. Land and water management issues fall under the department.

NMMA said it supports the nomination.

“We look forward to working with Rep. Zinke and the team at the Department of Interior to advance the outdoor recreation sector, grow jobs in the U.S., and ensure robust public access and treasured experiences boating and in the outdoors,” said Thom Dammrich, NMMA president.

4. Promoter cancels Dayton's outdoor and boat show

Citing a lack of exhibitors and scheduling challenges, the promoter of the Dayton All-American Outdoor Expo has cancelled the show for 2017, the Dayton Daily News reports.

Rob Lynch told the paper he is attempting to find space for a show in March 2018.

5. U.S. Coast Guard offers Christmas boating ideas

As the holidays draw near, the U.S. Coast Guard and its Auxiliary civilian volunteers would like to offer some gift ideas for boaters to help them stay safe all year long, Best of Boating shares.

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