Dear NACO Member,
The clean water act bill introduced by Senator Begich now has a number and can be referenced. We need all NACO members to contact their respective Senators and ask for their support of S3332. This bill has the below provision that will permanently exempt all charter vessels, both uninspected and USCG COI, less than 79’ from the EPA clean water NPDES vessel discharges requirements. Currently there is a moratorium on these requires until Dec 2013, but this legislation must be passed and signed into law in order to have a permanent exemption. EPA has insisted that our vessels not be exempt so the passage of this bill is critical. The permitting, paper work, requirements, and potential liability that we will have if required to comply will be devastating to our businesses. Several of your Board members have been actively working on this issue in DC and with other fishing associations.
This bill is gaining cosponsors in the senate as I write this. Senator Feinstein is opposed but many other democrats are supporting the bill. If you need the contact info for your Senators, please contact the NACO office. Action needs to be taken ASAP as the current session ends August 3rd. Congress will be back in session on September 10. Please act today!
Capt. Bob Zales, II
On page 26 under section 7, exemptions, it states:
IN GENERAL.—No permit shall be required or prohibition enforced under any other provision of law for, nor shall any vessel incidental discharge standards under this Act apply to—
(1) a discharge incidental to the normal operation of a vessel if the vessel is less than 79 feet in length and engaged in commercial service (as defined in section 2101(5) of title 46, United States Code);
(2) a discharge incidental to the normal operation of a vessel if the vessel is a fishing vessel, including a fish processing vessel and a fish tender vessel, (as defined in section 2101 of title 46, United States Code);
(3) a discharge incidental to the normal operation of a vessel if the vessel is a recreational vessel (as defined in section 2101 of title 46, United States Code);
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