Governor Brown Re-appoints Two to Boating and Waterways Commission

Governor Jerry Brown has re-appointed David Livingston and Virginia Madueno to the Boating and Waterways Commission.

From the Governor's press release:

David Livingston, 52, of Danville, has been reappointed to the California Boating and Waterways Commission, where he has serviced since 2012. Livingston has been sheriff-coroner for Contra Costa County since 2011. He served as chief of police for the City of Concord from 2005 to 2011, City of Pleasant Hill from 2002 to 2005 and for the City of Fremont from 1987 to 2002. Livingston earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of San Francisco School of Law. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $100 per diem. Livingston is registered without party preference.

Virginia Madueno, 51, of Riverbank, has been reappointed to the California Boating and Waterways Commission, where she has served since 2013. Madueno has been president at Imagen LLC since 2001. She was a member of the Riverbank City Council from 2005 to 2012, serving as mayor from 2009 to 2012. She was a community organizer at Clean Water Action from 2009 to 2011, a marketing manager officer at the Stanislaus County Department for Employment and Training from 1990 to 1997 and was a public information officer at the Stanislaus Chief Executive Office and Stanislaus County Office of Emergency Services from 1997 to 2001. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $100 per diem. Madueno is a Democrat.
 

GOVERNOR SIGNS RBOC-SUPPORTED BUI CLARITY MEASURE INTO LAW

California Governor Jerry Brown today signed into law AB 1829 [Levine], legislation supported by RBOC and sponsored by the California State Sheriffs' Association that clarifies current state law pertaining to boating under the influence [BUI].

RBOC supports the provisions of AB 1829 that update the boating under the influence [BUI] law as part of a continued effort to increase safety on our state’s waterways.

Addressing BUI remains important.  According to the 2013 report of the state Division of Boating and Waterways, 32% of all boating fatalities in the state involved alcohol during the period 2009 to 2013.

AB 1829 clarifies existing law and removes obsolete language regarding the arrest of a person suspected of operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

The measure amends Harbors and Navigation Code Section 655.1. The revision clarifies that an officer who arrests a person on suspicion of operating a vessel or watercraft while under the influence shall inform the person that:

  • A criminal complaint may be filed against him or her for operating a mechanically propelled vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or any drug, or under the combined influence of an alcoholic beverage and any drug.

  • He or she has a right to refuse chemical testing.

  • An officer has the authority to seek a search warrant compelling the arrested person to submit a blood sample.

  • He or she does not have the right to have an attorney present before stating whether he or she will submit to the chemical testing, before deciding which chemical test or tests to take, or during the administration of the chemical test or tests chosen.

This advisement provision replaces the obsolete provision in the current law. That provision requires an officer to inform a person arrested for a BUI that his or her refusal to submit to, or failure to complete, the required chemical testing may be used against the person in a court of law and that the court may impose increased penalties for that refusal or failure, upon conviction. Neither of those statements is accurate.

The provisions of the measure will take effect on January 1, 2017.

Legislature Sends BUI Clarity Measure to Governor

The Senate today approved and sent to the Governor AB 1829 [Levine], legislation supported by RBOC that would clarify current law pertaining to boating under the influence [BUI].

RBOC supports the provisions of AB 1829 that would update the boating under the influence [BUI] law as part of a continued effort to increase safety on our state’s waterways.

Addressing BUI remains important.  According to the 2013 report of the state Division of Boating and Waterways, 32% of all boating fatalities in the state involved alcohol during the period 2009 to 2013.

AB 1829 would clarify existing law and would remove obsolete language regarding the arrest of a person suspected of operating a vessel under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

The measure would amend Harbors and Navigation Code Section 655.1. The revision would clarify that an officer who arrests a person on suspicion of operating a vessel or watercraft while under the influence shall inform the person that:

  • A criminal complaint may be filed against him or her for operating a mechanically propelled vessel or manipulating any water skis, aquaplane, or similar device under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or any drug, or under the combined influence of an alcoholic beverage and any drug.

  • He or she has a right to refuse chemical testing.

  • An officer has the authority to seek a search warrant compelling the arrested person to submit a blood sample.

  • He or she does not have the right to have an attorney present before stating whether he or she will submit to the chemical testing, before deciding which chemical test or tests to take, or during the administration of the chemical test or tests chosen.

This advisement provision would replace the obsolete provision in the current law. That provision requires an officer to inform a person arrested for a BUI that his or her refusal to submit to, or failure to complete, the required chemical testing may be used against the person in a court of law and that the court may impose increased penalties for that refusal or failure, upon conviction. Neither of those statements is accurate.

AB 1829 has already passed the Assembly. The measure is sponsored by the California State Sheriffs' Association.

RBOC Supporting Measure to Clarify BUI Law

RBOC is supporting AB 1829 [Levine] that would clarify current law pertaining to boating under the influence [BUI] as the measure is considered in the Senate Committee on Public Safety.

RBOC supports the provisions of AB 1829 that would conform the advisement provisions of the Penal Code related to BUI, to existing provisions in the Harbors and Navigation Code. 

The measure would amend Harbors and Navigation Code Section 655.1. The revision would clarify that an officer who arrests a person on suspicion of operating a vessel or watercraft while under the influence shall inform the person that:

  • He or she may be charged with a crime,
  • He or she has the right to refuse chemical testing, and
  • The officer has the authority to seek a search warrant to compel a blood draw if the person refuses to submit to, or fails to complete, a blood test.

This provision would replace the obsolete provision in the current law. That provision requires an officer to inform a person arrested for a BUI that his or her refusal to submit to, or failure to complete, the required chemical testing may be used against the person in a court of law and that the court may impose increased penalties for that refusal or failure, upon conviction. Neither of those statements is accurate.

AB 1829 has already passed the Assembly. The measure is sponsored by the California State Sheriffs' Association.
 

 

Bill Pirating Recreational Boater Funds for Commmercial Vessel Cleanup Held in Committee

The Assembly Appropriations Committee has "held under submission" the RBOC-opposed AB 2092 [Frazier] that would authorize the use of boater-generated state taxes and fees for the cleanup of commercial vessels.

With this action, AB 2092 did not proceed through the Appropriations Committee prior to the deadline for bills to proceed to the Assembly Floor [Assembly Third Reading].

Many thanks to the many boaters statewide who took action to contact their elected representatives and express concerns with this important measure. Your actions make a difference.

Save Boater Fundsfrom Being Pirated for Commercial Vessel Cleanup - Contact Assembly Appropriations Committee Members Prior to May 27

RBOC is continuing to encourage California Boaters to contact their elected representatives on the Assembly Appropriations Committee and to urge a “no” vote on AB 2092 [Frazier] in Committee unless the bill is amended so that recreational boaters’ funds will not be used to rid the waterways of abandoned commercial vessels.

Please take action today. The committe's decision on the bill will occur prior to a May 27 deadline.

To take action: click here

Take Action Today to Protect Recreational Boater Funds from Being Pirated for Commercial Vessel Cleanup [4/21]

California Boaters are encouraged to contact their elected representatives on the Assembly Appropriations Committee and to urge a “no” vote on AB 2092 [Frazier] in Committee unless the bill is amended so that recreational boaters’ funds will not be used to rid the waterways of abandoned commercial vessels.

Please take action today. The bill could be heard next week, and must pass through committee prior to a May 27 deadline.

To take action: click here

Key issues:

AB 2092 [Frazier] would target recreational boater funds for the cleanup of abandoned commercial vessels. 

Commercial vessels are much more expensive to clean-up and the cost of one vessel could exceed the entire amount of available funds.

The owners of commercial vessels do not contribute to our fund – only recreational vessel owners do.

The demand for clean-up of recreational vessels already exceeds the amount of available funds. These vessels should remain the top priority at this time.

There is no condition in the bill restricting the cleanup of abandoned commercial vessels to those that pose a danger to recreational boaters.

Bill Pirating Boater Funds for Commercial Vessel Clean-up Passes First Committee

Legislation authorizing recreational boater funds to be utilized for the cleanup of commercial vessels passed the first legislative policy committee, the Assembly Transportation Committee, following todays' hearing.

RBOC testified in opposition to the measure, AB 2092 [Frazier], unless is it amended so that recreational boaters' funds will not be used to rid the waterways of abandoned commercial vessels.

In addition, hundreds of individual boaters contacted their elected representatives on the committee.

The announced vote of the 16-member committee is 10 "ayes" to 3 "nayes." Nine votes were necessary for passage.

The measure next proceeds to the Assembly Appropriations Committee for consideration.

RBOC will be enabling boaters to contact their representatives on the committee in advance of the committee hearing, and will be advocating RBOC's position in the State Capitol.

RBOC Working to Protect Boater Funds from being Tagged for Commercial Vessel Cleanup

RBOC is working to protect boater fuel tax dollars and registration fees from a proposal to target these funds for the cleanup of abandoned commercial vessels.

RBOC is opposing AB 2092 [Frazier] unless the bill is amended so that recreational boaters’ funds will not be used to rid the waterways of abandoned commercial vessels.

RBOC is greatly concerned that, as currently written, AB 2092 would open up the use of boater fuel tax dollars and registration fees for commercial vessels. The key issues:

  • Commercial vessels are much more expensive to clean-up and the cost of one vessel could exceed the entire fund.
  • The owners of commercial vessels do not contribute to the fund –only recreational vessel owners do.
  • The demand for clean-up of recreational vessels already exceeds the amount of available funds. These vessels should remain the topaat this time.
  • There have been no comprehensive studies of:
  • The extent to which abandoned commercial vessels represent danger on the waterways;
    • Whether the owners of abandoned commercial vessels can be identified and assessed cleanup costs; and
    • Whether there are other alternatives to tapping into the recreational boater-funded program, such as state recycle and superfund dollars.

AB 2092 proposes to open up the use of boater-generated fuel tax dollars and registration fees for the cleanup of abandoned commercial vessels. At issue is the integrity of the boater supported and financed Abandoned Watercraft Abatement Fund [AWAF] and Vessel Turn-in Program [VTIP]. RBOC has been – and continues to be - a strong supporter of both of these essential programs.

The AWAF and VTIP provide funds to public agencies to remove, store, and dispose of abandoned, wrecked, or dismantled recreational vessels which pose a substantial hazard to navigation, from navigable waterways or adjacent public property, or private property with the landowner's consent.

As part of its commitment to provide clean, safe and enjoyable recreational boating on California's waterways, the Division of Boating and Waterways [DBW] administers this statewide program. It allows public local agencies to apply for funding and upon approval, enter into a contract grant agreement with DBW.

The AWAF and VTIP, enacted in 1998 and 2010 respectively, have provided millions of dollars in grants, and have enabled the removal of thousands of vessels and other marine debris.

The Governor has proposed a budget of $1.75 million for the program in next year’s budget, and we understand that the monetary requests of grant applicants greatly exceed the available funds.

As RBOC has discussed with the author and proponents of the measure, rather than focus on recreational boaters’ funds, RBOC would be pleased to work with all interested stakeholders to address the issues raised by the abandonment of commercial vessels in California, and to identify effective, efficient, and balanced efforts that can be taken.

RBOC continues to be engaged in the productive dialogue that occurs within the abandoned vessel working group that focuses on these issues and can provide a beneficial forum for the development of ideas.

Other state and local agencies that have financial resources and expertise should also be approached. CalRecycle, for instance, completed a department-managed Pilot Project a few years ago with the stated objective of removing abandoned commercial vessels and debris that poses threats to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.

There is a CalRecycle Solid Waste Cleanup Trust Fund and a State Water Resources Control Board Cleanup and Abatement Account.

RBOC Directors Lobbying in State Capitol on Key Boater Issues

The members of the voluntary, 18-member RBOC Board of Directors are lobbying in the State Capitol today, meeting with their elected representatives and advocating boater interests on key issues of importance to boaters statewide.

Issues they are lobbying include:

Vessel Operator Certification

RBOC is working with the Division of Boating and Waterways as it prepares a new boat operator educational program that requires operators of boats powered by engines pass a state-approved course and obtain a certificate. 

A representative of RBOC is on the Technical Advisory Committee that held its initial meeting in March and is working to advise the Division as it implements the new program.

The requirement will begin to phase in over a seven-year period starting in 2018.

RBOC supported the legislation, SB 941 [Monning-DeSaulnier, Chapter 433, Statutes of 2014].

For a copy of that enacted measure: click here

Abandoned Watercraft Abatement Fund - Commercial Vessels

RBOC isopposing AB 2092 [Frazier] as introduced unless the bill is amended so that recreational boaters’ funds will not be used to rid the waterways of abandoned commercial vessels.

Boating Under the Influence - AB 1829 [Levine]

RBOC is supporting AB 1829 [Levine] that would clarify the boating under the influence law.

Copper-based Anti-fouling Surfaces

RBOC is working together with the respected national boater advocacy organization BoatUS, requesting that elected officials contact the USEPA and urge its approval of the Biotic Ligand Model [BLM] for the marine environment.

This will allow for accurate measurement of the copper’s effect on particular locations and provide regional water quality control boards [RWQCBs] with information to determine if bans on copper antifouling paints are needed to protect water quality.

Non-Native Aquatic Species

RBOC is supporting the dedicated efforts of the Division of Boating and Waterways to identify and commit the necessary resources to combat non-native aquatic species, and to develop and implement long-term strategies that can be more effective than past efforts.

Barriers to Navigation

RBOC seeks assurances that, as any changes are contemplated to further alter Delta navigable waterways, alternatives are identified and implemented that will best preserve and sustain recreational boat passage at each location.

Renewable Fuel Standard - Federal Legislation

RBOC is working together with the respected national boater advocacy organization BoatUS in support of S. 577, the "Corn Ethanol Mandate Elimination Act of 2015" which is authored by Senators Diane Feinstein and Pat Toomey.

 

RBOC Supporting Bill Clarifying BUI Law

RBOC is supporting AB 1829 [Levine] that would clarify the boating under the influence law.

Existing law requires the arrested individual to be informed that a refusal to submit to, or failure to complete, the required chemical testing may be used against the person in court and that the court, upon convicting the arrested individual, may impose increased penalties for his or her refusal or failure.

This bill would instead require the arrested individual to be advised that:

  • A criminal complaint may be filed against him or her for operating a vessel or water-related device while under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or any drug, or both;
  • He or she has a right to refuse chemical testing; and
  • The officer has the authority to seek a search warrant compelling him or her to submit a blood sample.

 

RBOC Opposing Bill to Open up Boater Funds to Commercial Vessels

RBOC isopposing AB 2092 [Frazier] as introduced unless the bill is amended so that recreational boaters’ funds will not be used to rid the waterways of abandoned commercial vessels.

This bill proposes to open up the use of boater-generated fuel tax dollars and registration fees for the cleanup of abandoned commercial vessels. At issue is the integrity of the RBOC-supported Abandoned Watercraft Abatement Fund [AWAF] and Vessel Turn-in Program [VTIP]. 

This program provides funds to public agencies to remove, store, and dispose of abandoned, wrecked, or dismantled vessels or any other partially submerged objects which pose a substantial hazard to navigation, from navigable waterways or adjacent public property, or private property with the landowner's consent.

As part of its commitment to provide clean, safe and enjoyable recreational boating on California's waterways, the Division of Boating and Waterways [DBW] administers this statewide program. It allows public local agencies to apply for funding and upon approval, enter into a contract grant agreement with DBW.

The AWAF and VTIP, enacted in 1998 and 2010 respectively, have provided millions of dollars in grants, and have enabled the removal of thousands of vessels and other marine debris.

The Governor has proposed a budget of $1.75 million for the program in next year’s budget, and we understand that the monetary requests of grant applicants greatly exceed the available funds.

RBOC is concerned that AB 2092 would open up AWAF and VTIP to commercial vessels. In particular:

  • Commercial vessels are much more expensive to clean-up and the cost of one vessel could exceed the entire fund.
  • The owners of commercial vessels do not contribute to the fund – only recreational vessel owners do.
  • The demand for clean-up of recreational vessels already exceeds the amount of available funds. These vessels should remain the top priority at this time.
  • There have been no comprehensive studies of:
  • The extent to which abandoned commercial vessels represent danger on the waterways;
  • Whether the owners of abandoned commercial vessels can be identified and assessed cleanup costs; and
  • Whether there are other alternatives to tapping into the recreational boater-funded program, such as state recycle and superfund dollars.

 

Governor Signs Marine Debris Legislation

California Governor Jerry Brown today signed into law the RBOC-supported AB 1323 [Frazier].

The measure will enhance the removal of marine debris from the state's waterways.

The bill provides authority for any state, county, city, or other public agency having jurisdiction over a given location, or having authority to remove marine debris or solid waste, to remove and destroy marine debris that is floating, sunk, partially sunk, or beached in or on a public waterway, beach, or on state tidelands or submerged lands, subject to specific conditions:

  1. The marine debris meets the definition provided in the Harbors and Navigation Code and the value of the debris does not exceed the cost of removal and disposal.
  2. If the debris cannot be identified as belonging to an individual, a peace officer or authorized public employee securely attaches to the marine debris a notice stating that the marine debris shall be removed by the public agency if not claimed or removed within 10 days.
  3. If the debris can be identified as belonging to an individual, a 10-day notice is attached to the marine debris, and sent to the owner of the marine debris, if known, at the owner's address of record with the Department of Motor Vehicles, by certified or first-class mail. 
  4. The marine debris is not removed prior to the ten day notification period.

Marine Debris Bill Passes Legislature, Proceeds to Governor

The Assembly today concurred in the Senate amendments to AB 1323 [Frazier] by a preliminary, bipartisan vote of 71—0, sending the RBOC-supported marine debris measure to the Governor for his consideration.

The meaure would enhance the removal of marine debris from the state's waterways. The bill would provide authority for any state, county, city, or other public agency having jurisdiction over a given location, or having authority to remove marine debris or solid waste, to remove and destroy marine debris that is floating, sunk, partially sunk, or beached in or on a public waterway, beach, or on state tidelands or submerged lands, subject to specific conditions:

  1. The marine debris meets the definition provided in the Harbors and Navigation Code and the value of the debris does not exceed the cost of removal and disposal.
  2. If the debris cannot be identified as belonging to an individual, a peace officer or authorized public employee securely attaches to the marine debris a notice stating that the marine debris shall be removed by the public agency if not claimed or removed within 10 days.
  3. If the debris can be identified as belonging to an individual, a 10-day notice is attached to the marine debris, and sent to the owner of the marine debris, if known, at the owner's address of record with the Department of Motor Vehicles, by certified or first-class mail. 
  4. The marine debris is not removed prior to the ten day notification period.

 

 

RBOC-supported Marine Debris Legislation Passes Senate

RBOC-supported AB 1323 [Frazier, D-Oakley] to enhance the removal of marine debris from the state's waterways has passed the Senate Floor [Senate Third Reading]. The measure next proceeds to the Assembly for concurrence in the amendments made to the bill in the Senate.

This legislation would provide authority for any state, county, city, or other public agency having jurisdiction over a given location, or having authority to remove marine debris or solid waste, to remove and destroy marine debris that is floating, sunk, partially sunk, or beached in or on a public waterway, beach, or on state tidelands or submerged lands, subject to specific conditions:

  1. The marine debris meets the definition provided in the Harbors and Navigation Code and the value of the debris does not exceed the cost of removal and disposal.
  2. If the debris cannot be identified belonging to an individual, a peace officer or authorized public employee securely attaches to the marine debris a notice stating that the marine debris shall be removed by the public agency if not claimed or removed within 10 days.
  3. If the debris can be identified as belonging to an individual, a 10-day notice is attached to the marine debris, and sent to the owner of the marine debris, if known, at the owner's address of record with the Department of Motor Vehicles, by certified or first-class mail. 
  4. The marine debris is not removed prior to the ten day notification period.

Invasive Species Oversight Legislation Held in Committee

The RBOC-supported SB 223 [Galgiani] has not moved off of suspense in the Assembly Appropriations Committee and the measure is not expected to move forward this year.

This urgency bill would require the Division of Boating and Waterways within the Department of Parks and Recreation to establish an advisory committee to evaluate and monitor activities related to the management and control of invasive aquatic plants in the Delta, its tributaries, and the Suisun Marsh

Of note from the analysis of the Appropriations Committee:

“Increased potential costs of up to $290,000 (GF or Harbors and Watercraft Revolving Fund) until 2019 for the division to comply with the provisions of the bill. This costs assumes the committee created by the bill will identify new recommendations for division activities.

“However, there are two existing committees that provide input of the division's aquatic weed program.  The first, in consultation with the US Department of Agriculture addresses the research, management and control of invasive aquatic plants in the Delta and Suisun Marsh. 

“The second, the Interagency Aquatic Invasive Species Coordination Team takes a broad perspective on controlling and managing invasive aquatic plants in the Delta.  Given the existing efforts on this subject, the costs estimated by the DPR should be viewed as a maximum with actual costs potentially much lower.”

RBOC-supported Legislation for Oversight of Invasive Aquatic Plants Efforts Passes Assembly Committee

RBOC-supported legislation SB 223 [Galgiani] that would establish an advisory and oversight committee to evaluate and monitor the activities of the Division of Boating and Waterways relating to the management and control or eradication of invasive aquatic plants will pass the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee following today's hearing. RBOC testified in support of the bill.

The provisions of SB 223 would enhance the existing laws that designate the Division of Boating and Waterways within the Department of Parks and Recreation as the lead agency of the state for purposes of cooperating with other state, local, and federal agencies in identifying, detecting, controlling, and administering programs to manage invasive aquatic plants in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, its tributaries, and the Suisun Marsh, and that prescribes the duties of the division with regard to the management and control or eradication of those plants.

The increasing infestations of aquatic invasive plants, especially throughout the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, confirm the critical need to accomplish increased effectiveness and efficiencies. SB 223 is in furtherance of this objective.

RBOC-supported Marine Debris Legislation Passes Senate Judiciary Committee

RBOC-supported AB 1323 [Frazier, D-Oakley] to enhance the removal of marine debris from the state's waterways will pass the Senate Committee on the Judiciary following today's hearing in the Capitol. The measure next proceeds to the Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration.

This legislation would provide authority for any state, county, city, or other public agency having jurisdiction over a given location, or having authority to remove marine debris or solid waste, to remove and destroy marine debris that is floating, sunk, partially sunk, or beached in or on a public waterway, beach, or on state tidelands or submerged lands, subject to specific conditions:

  1. The marine debris meets the definition provided in the Harbors and Navigation Code and the value of the debris does not exceed the cost of removal and disposal.
  2. If the debris cannot be identified belonging to an individual, a peace officer or authorized public employee securely attaches to the marine debris a notice stating that the marine debris shall be removed by the public agency if not claimed or removed within 10 days.
  3. If the debris can be identified as belonging to an individual, a 10-day notice is attached to the marine debris, and sent to the owner of the marine debris, if known, at the owner's address of record with the Department of Motor Vehicles, by certified or first-class mail. 
  4. The marine debris is not removed prior to the ten day notification period.

Governor Signs RBOC-supported PFD Bill into Law

The Governor today signed into law RBOC-supported personal flotation device [PFD] legislation that will enhance safety on the state's waterways.

AB 638 authored by Assembly Member Jim Frazier [D-Oakley] prohibits a person from operating a motorboat, sailboat, or vessel of any length unless every person on board under the age of 13 is wearing a PFD while the vessel is underway.

There are specific exceptions for children under the age of 13 who are in an enclosed cabin, are tethered to a sailboat, are engaged in emergency rescues, are participating in specified organized events, or are operating certain federally-regulated vessels.

The provisions of the bill will take effect on January 1, 2016.