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Comments sought on proposed boating regulations

DEC expects to have Lake George rules in place this year

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has posted online for public comment its proposed regulations to help stop the transport of aquatic invasive species.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has posted online for public comment its proposed regulations to help stop the transport of aquatic invasive species.

— The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has posted online for public comment its proposed regulations to help stop the transport of aquatic invasive species.

The new regulations would make it illegal to launch at a DEC site without having first removed all visible plant and/or animal material and having drained all water from the boat. The new regulations would also make it illegal to leave from a launch site without having done the same as well.

The proposed regulations will allow DEC law enforcement staff to ticket any user of DEC boat launch facilities that does not drain a watercraft and remove any visible plants and animals attached to it, the trailer or associated equipment prior to launching at or leaving the site.

The penalty for violating this regulation is imprisonment for not more than 15 days or a fine of not more than $250, or both fine and imprisonment.

In part, the proposed rules read:

“No person shall launch, or attempt to launch a watercraft from a state boat launching site, a fishing access site, or any other site from which a watercraft may be launched, or leave from these sites with any plant or animal, or parts thereof, visible to the human eye, in, on, or attached to any part of the watercraft, including live wells and bilges, the motor, rudder, anchor or other appurtenants; any equipment or gear; or the trailer or any other device used to transport or launch a watercraft that may come into contact with the water, unless a written permit is obtained from the department.

“No person shall launch, or attempt to launch a watercraft from a state boat launching site, a fishing access site, or any other site from which a watercraft may be launched, or leave from these sites without draining the watercraft, including bilge areas, live wells, bait wells and ballast tanks, unless a written permit is obtained from the department.”

The entire proposed regulation is available online at www.dec.ny.gov/regulations/95111.html

The comment period is open through Feb 24.

It’s expected the DEC will have this new regulation in place for the 2014 boating season.

Comments can be sent to Phil Hulbert, Chief, Bureau of Fisheries, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany 12233 or by email to: fishregs@gw.dec.state.ny.us - using the following subject line: Comments on Proposed Rulemaking Part 59 and Part 190 - Aquatic Invasive Species Control

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