RUTLAND, Vt. – Boat dealers in Vermont have established a trade association to promote their interests and educate the public, the Rutland Herald reported in a story this morning.
The Vermont Boat and Marine Association was formed recently to encourage safe and environmentally responsible boating as well as to monitor legislation and regulations that affect the state's boating industry, John Freeman, the association's president and owner of the Small Boat Exchange in Shelburne, Vt., told the newspaper.
Freeman said a statewide organization of its kind was long overdue, especially given the industry's economic impact.
"We're actually a substantial industry in this state," Freeman said. "A lot of jobs created, a lot of money brought in to the state."
Freeman had no specific dollar figure of the industry's economic contribution and said the association is in the process of compiling that information.
So far, the organization has 30 members with the potential for as many as 100, including related businesses like bait and tackle shops.
Freeman said the organization intends to work on boating education and environmental issues.
"We're really pushing four-stroke engines and cleaner-running products," he said.
In addition to Freeman, other officers of the Vermont Boat and Marine Association include James Blandino, treasurer, of North Hero Marina and Bruce Deming, secretary, of Champlain Marina, Colchester Vt.
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