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Weekly 5: Miami boat show protest fizzles

By Jonathan Sweet

The BI Weekly 5 is a collection of tips, news and data affecting the boating industry this week. Be sure to look for the BI Weekly 5 every Tuesday on BoatingIndustry.com.

1. Miami boat show protest fizzles

A protest by opponents of the Miami International Boat Show, which organizers had predicted would draw thousands, ended up being a small gathering of a few dozen, the Miami Herald reported.

The protest was organized by a coalition of environmental groups that has raised concerns about the impact of the show on the ecosystem around its new home at Miami Marine Stadium Basin & Park. The protest was also supported by the village of Key Biscayne, which has filed suit against both the city of Miami and the National Marine Manufacturers Association in an attempt to block the show.

“I don't think that there is opposition to the Boat Show, I really don't, other than the leadership in Key Biscayne,” Miami Mayor Tomás Regalado told the Herald.

2. Traditional powerboat shipments up 3%

Wholesale shipments of traditional powerboats were up 3 percent for NMMA’s control group of manufacturers through June, the association reported, with growth led by the outboard boat and inboard boat segments. NMMA's control group represents 68 percent of the market.

3. Proposed title law could protect Alabama boaters

A proposal supported by NMMA to require titles for larger boats could be back before the Alabama state legislature in 2016, The Anniston Star reported. The bill, which proposed a $25 title fee for boats, was designed to protect boat owners from theft and make it easier to track stolen boats, supporters say.

“Alabama has become a dumping ground for stolen boats,” NMMA lobbyist Graham Champion told the paper. “It’s easy to forge a bill of sale.”

4. S. Carolina legislators question need for licensing

State legislative leaders said they don't see a need for boater licensing in South Carolina after a local lake officials proposed the step, the Independent Mail reported.

Herb Burnham, executive director of the Lake Hartwell Association, raised the idea, saying action is needed to improve safety on one of South Carolina's largest lake.

“The only good answer we have that is doable is education, and somehow you’ve got to enforce that,” said Burnham at the meeting that the Natural Resources Department hosted at Clemson University, the paper reported. “You’ve got to enforce it by having operator’s licenses like you have a driver’s license with an automobile.”

5. State appeals court upholds ruling against Tracker Boating Center

The Alabama Court of Civil Appeals has upheld a 2014 Lauderdale County Circuit Court ruling against Tracker Boating Center, which was accused of allowing the unauthorized release of oil and gasoline at its U.S. 72 location, the Florence Times Daily reported.

The boating center was sued by the property owner, Oakley Land Co., after the petroleum products were found on the site while Oakley was attempting to sell the property in 2008, the paper reported.

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