MRAA urges support of Grow Boating

OAK PARK, Ill. – The Marine Retailers Association of America is urging support of the Grow Boating initiative and calling on all dealers to support the proposed funding model, MRAA said in a release yesterday.

Under the proposal, funding will come from a surcharge or flat fee placed on all horsepower at the manufacturing level and passed down thru the chain to the consumer. MRAA said preliminary plans call for up to $1 per each horsepower produced.

“The Grow Boating Initiative will not just simply market ourselves to grow boating but will address all of our underlying issues that have so severely challenged our industry for some time,” MRAA stated. “We will need a minimum of $10 million to get the program started. The internal programs and the creation of the initial media need to start immediately. As complete plans are finalized and presented, it will be necessary for all segments of our industry to give wholehearted support to the project.”

MRAA wants all dealers to write letters of support for the funding model and send them to their power suppliers immediately.

“Copy the boat companies you deal with and let them know of your support and urge them to support the effort,” MRAA wrote. “Please indicate to them the need to put aside other concerns that seem to be clouding the view and support an immediate start to the collection of funds to make this project a reality.”

At the recently completed MRAA Convention, a complete report from the five task forces assembled to create the initiative was given to those in attendance, and MRAA’s Board of Directors voted to unanimously support the project.

The three MRAA 20 Groups that were holding their quarterly meeting in conjunction with the convention – Group 101, Group 102 and Group 104 – issued resolutions of support.

Signed by their respective chairmen, the resolution read:

“The entire Spader 20 Group dealer body, as members of MRAA, unanimously endorse the Grow Boating Marketing Initiative presented at the November 2004 MRAA National Convention. Further, we support the partnership of NMMA and MRAA in the continued development of this exciting national boating industry program.”

“In my long career in this wonderful industry, I have never seen so much enthusiasm and support for a cooperative effort between dealers and manufacturers,” said Phil Keeter, MRAA president. “Those assembled want to get started right now. We want the membership to show they are solidly and seriously supportive of this model and are anxiously awaiting the start up.”

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