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NMMA ramps up advocacy efforts after Congressional summer recess

By National Marine Manufacturers Association

Last week, NMMA and their members held several events and meetings on Capitol Hill and with the administration to highlight the recreational boating industry’s priorities – including trade, the Modern Fish Act, E15, and workforce development. The November midterm elections are just around the corner and NMMA is working diligently to accomplish the industry’s objectives before the end of the year.

On Thursday, NMMA joined Correct Craft’s Bill Yeargin and Smoker Craft’s Doug Smoker for a meeting with Vice President Mike Pence’s office to discuss the importance of free and fair trade and the effects tariffs are having on the boating industry. The trade war is hitting the industry on multiple fronts, which is causing the price of marine materials and parts to rise and freezing U.S. boat exports. NMMA is encouraged by recent developments on NAFTA, but there are still outstanding questions on Canada’s involvement and other trade deals with key export markets.

Scott Deal of Maverick Boat Company, Ben Speciale of Yamaha Marine Group, NMMA, and our angling partners met with key senators on Thursday and urged them to pass the Modern Fish Act – critical legislation that would improve fisheries management and data collection methods for recreational fishing. Earlier this summer, the House of Representatives passed a bill (H.R. 200) that contained Modern Fish Act provisions. The recreational boating industry is now calling on the Senate to take up and pass their version of the Modern Fish Act (S.1520) this month.

The NMMA team visited with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) staff on Friday to discuss the dangers of E15 to the boating community. The meeting with EPA comes at a critical time as the sale of E15 fuels will resume on September 15 after being suspended for the summer months and the administration considers year-round E15 sales. NMMA continues to urge EPA to take steps that help prevent consumers from misfuelling and call on Congress to pass the Consumer Protection and Fuel Transparency Act of 2018 – bipartisan legislation that would more clearly educate consumers and label E15 blended gasoline at pumps across the country.

Earlier in the week, the Congressional Boating Caucus, hosted a Capitol Hill briefing on the shortage of qualified workers that the boating industry is currently facing. Congressional staff from key offices attended the event, where they learned what the industry is doing to address this issue and what Congress can do to help. Click here to watch NMMA’s Marine Minute video recapping the briefing.

For more information, please contact NMMA Senior Vice President of Government Relations and Legal Affairs, Nicole Vasilaros at nvasilaros@nmma.org.

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