Connecticut marine association reports on busy legislative season

The Connecticut Marine Trades Association was “very active” in offering testimony and advancing the industry’s goals this year, the group’s legislative representative reported recently.

CMTA offered testimony on eight bills to multiple committees and advocated for or against a number of measures that affected the recreational boating sector, Linda Kowalski of The Kowalski Group, LLC, said in a note to members.

Some of the highlights of this year’s session:

One of  CMTA’s top priorities was passage of House Bill 5459, which created vessel title requirement for boats principally used in Connecticut’s waters. CMTA supported the bill to help ensure transparency in boat sales and transactions.

Included in the state’s larger omnibus budget implementation bill (House Bill 5597) was funding to establish an aquatic invasive species management, grant, prevention and education program in the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Under the program, DEEP may provide grants to municipalities for aquatic invasive species management efforts; educate boaters on ways to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species, and conduct a rapid response to an aquatic invasive species population identified in an inland water body.

House Bill 5289 creates a quasi-public Connecticut Port Authority that will oversee the development, operation and marketing of the state’s ports.  The entity will be governed by a 15-member Board of Directors.  The law also requires a “Working Group” be established to develop the standards and policies for the Authority, and the law mandates that the House speaker appoint a member of CMTA to it.

CMTA also supported Public Act 14-57, which speeds up the process by which an abandoned vessel can be sold.  The new act reduces the time from 60 days to 45 days.

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