Boat show to rally support for Michigan law

LIVONIA, Mich. – The 14th annual Spring Boating Expo’s show management team is counting on more than 15,000 boating enthusiasts to visit the event March 16-19 and intends to utilize that audience to help push Proposal One, which will be on the general election ballot on Nov. 7, show organizers said in a press release Tuesday.

Show management has briefed its staff and printed hand-outs, intending to utilize the show as an opportunity to communicate to boating enthusiasts the urgency of Proposal One, which would constitutionally protect all recreational license and permit fees, ensuring the funds are available to support their intended purposes.

“Proposal One will be the first question on the November General Election Ballot,” said Van Snider, show manager. “It should also be the first priority for every boater and outdoor enthusiast in Michigan.”

People who participate in recreational activities in Michigan pay fees, buy licenses or permits to support such activities on state waters and lands. These fees are the primary source of funding for maintaining the state’s marinas, boating access, state parks, state forests, fisheries and wildlife programs as well as snowmobile and off road vehicle trail systems.

“Even though state law requires these funds only be used to support recreational programs in the state, they are vulnerable to raids during a budget crisis,” Snider said. “In 2003, the Michigan legislature took $7.8 million from boating licenses to support the general programs of the state.”

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