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Press: 2011 News Releases

11/01/2011

Coast Guard reminds waterway users to stay away from marine mammals



November 1, 2011


MONTEREY, Calif. - Crewmembers of U.S. Coast Guard Station Monterey Bay are enforcing Monterey Bay Marine Sanctuary regulations and water safety during routine patrols.

A number of Humpback whales have been spotted near the Santa Cruz entrance buoy, which is one mile west of the Santa Cruz Harbor. Although it's normal for whales to be spotted in this vicinity this time of year, the whales are unusually close to shore this year.

The Coast Guard has received several reports of kayakers, paddle boarders and recreational boaters getting dangerously close to these giants in the water. Water enthusiasts are not only putting themselves in danger, but they are putting the whales in danger as well. Human interaction with feeding whales can disturb the whales eating patterns and is considered harassment.

Coast Guard officials are reminding all waterway users that taunting and harassing these animals is illegal and is punishable by law. The Monterey Bay Marine Sanctuary has very stringent regulations and they will be enforced. Harassment of marine animals carries a minimum fine of $2,500 and can be up to $32,500. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration also enforces the sanctuary regulations and will be working with the Coast Guard, in a joint operation starting Nov. 1, to protect our natural marine resources. This joint operation recommends boaters and all water enthusiasts to keep at least 100 yards away from the whales and other marine life.

"The Coast Guard is an environmental protection and law enforcement agency," said Lt. John Suckow, executive officer Station Monterey. "As such we take these missions seriously, but at the same time we want the residents and tourists to enjoy the natural beauty of the Monterey Bay Marine Sanctuary. Our main priority during these patrols is to protect marine life and human life and remind people to be safe and respectful of marine wildlife."

Boaters and water enthusiasts are also encouraged to practice safe boating and water habits like wearing a properly fitting lifejacket, the buddy system, having a float plan in place with a responsible person on shore and having other emergency gear readily available. Boaters are also encouraged to carry a VHF marine band radio and an electronic position indicating radio beacon to use in case of an emergency.

For questions about Monterey Bay Marine Sancuary regulations please contact Lt. John Suckow at (831) 901-9804.

For more information in Station Monterey click on link below
http://www.d11.uscgnews.com/external/content/document/823/987043/1/Station%20Monterey%20fact%20sheet.pdf



10/27/2011

$2.1 Million in Funding for Boating Facilities Approved



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

October 27, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. —The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) yesterday approved $2.1 million in funding for boating facilities.

Items approved include:

Sandy Beach Boat Launching Facility – Solano County
The Commission approved a $60,000 grant to Solano County Parks and Recreation for improvements to Sandy Beach County Park. The project will include the installation of a fish cleaning station, modification and extension of the existing parking lot and pathways to provide full disabled accessibility to the fish cleaning station.

Santa Barbara Boat Launching Facility – Santa Barbara County
The Commission approved a $350,000 grant to the City of Santa Barbara for improvements to its harbor boat launching facility. The project will include demolishing the existing ramp area, and constructing two new V-groove launching lanes and a boat wash-down area.

Santa Barbara Harbor – Santa Barbara County
The Commission approved a $1.7 million loan to the City of Santa Barbara to complete construction of Fingers L and M of the Marina One Replacement Project at Santa Barbara Harbor.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boating launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the Boating and Waterways Commission.



10/21/2011

Boating and Waterways Commission to Consider $2.1 Million in Funding for Boating Facilities Oct. 26



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

October 21, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) will meet Oct. 26 in Santa Cruz to consider $2.1 million in boating facility improvement grants and loans. The meeting is open to the public and will convene at 9:00 a.m. at the Hilton Hotel, 6001 La Madrona Drive.

Items being considered by the Commission include:

Sandy Beach Boat Launching Facility – Solano County
The Commission will consider approving a $60,000 grant to Solano County Parks and Recreation for improvements to Sandy Beach County Park. The proposed project includes the installation of a fish cleaning station, modification and extension of the existing parking lot and pathways to provide full disabled accessibility to the fish cleaning station.

Santa Barbara Boat Launching Facility – Santa Barbara County
The Commission will consider approving a $350,000 grant to the City of Santa Barbara for improvements to its harbor boat launching facility. The proposed project includes demolishing the existing ramp area, and constructing two new V-groove launching lanes and a boat wash-down area.

Santa Barbara Harbor – Santa Barbara County
The Commission will consider a $1.7 million loan to the City of Santa Barbara to complete construction of Fingers L and M of the Marina One Replacement Project at Santa Barbara Harbor.

A detailed agenda of the meeting and information on the Commission may be found at http://www.dbw.ca.gov/Commission/.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boating launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the Boating and Waterways Commission.



09/13/2011

Study predicts sea level rise may take economic toll on California coast



Contact:  Elaine Bible, 415-405-3606

September 13, 2011


REPORT: The Economic Costs of Sea-Level Rise to California Beach Communities

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. - California beach towns could face hefty economic losses caused by sea level rise in the next century, according to a new state-commissioned study conducted by economists at San Francisco State University. The study forecasts the economic impact of sea level rise on five communities: Ocean Beach in San Francisco; Venice Beach and Malibu in Los Angeles; Carpinteria in Santa Barbara County; and Torrey Pines State Reserve in San Diego County.

Funded by the California Department of Boating and Waterways, the study examines the cost of coastal storm damage and erosion, both of which are expected to increase as sea levels rise. It also forecasts the economic impact of sea level rise on tourism and natural habitats, as beaches that have been narrowed by erosion lose their appeal to visitors and their ability to sustain wildlife.

The results suggest that visitor hotspots like Venice Beach could lose up to $440 million in tourism revenue between now and 2100 if sea levels rise by 4.6 feet (1.4 meters), a projection specific to the California coast, based on recent scientific studies. At San Francisco's Ocean Beach, accelerated erosion could cause up to $540 million worth of damage.

"Sea level rise will send reverberations throughout local and state economies," said Philip King, associate professor of economics at San Francisco State University. "We also found that the economic risks and responses to a changing coastline will vary greatly over time and from beach to beach."

The findings suggest that the cost and type of damage will vary depending on a community's economy, geography and local decisions about land use. For example, if sea level rises by 4.6 feet, Malibu beaches could lose almost $500 million in accumulated tourism revenue between now and 2100. Revenue losses would be much smaller at San Francisco's windswept Ocean Beach ($82 million), which attracts fewer visitors per year.

In addition to mean sea level rise, the study estimated the economic impact of more extreme flooding. Coastlines are already at risk of low-probability coastal storms -- like 100-year floods -- but higher sea levels are expected to extend the depth and reach of these floods, increasing the damage to homes, businesses and public infrastructure.

"In California, our coastline is one of our most valuable natural resources," King said. "More than 80 percent of Californians live in coastal communities, and California's beaches support local economies and critical natural species."

King and co-authors Aaron McGregor and Justin Whittet hope the findings will inform local planning efforts to evaluate and respond to sea level rise. "Understanding the kind of impact sea level rise will have is important for deciding what adaptive action to take," King said. "Seawalls have become the de facto policy for dealing with erosion and sea level rise but our findings suggest that other policies such as beach nourishment or where possible, allowing the coastline to retreat, could be more cost effective."

King and colleagues conducted their analysis primarily using secondary data, an approach which allowed them to calculate the economic impact of sea level rise at a fraction of the cost and time taken to complete the more commonly used shoreline hazard assessments.

Below is a summary of the key findings:

Ocean Beach (north of Sloat Boulevard), San Francisco County
Based on a sea level rise estimate of 4.6 feet (1.4 meters) by 2100, Ocean Beach could lose:

  • $19.6 million in damages caused by a 100-year coastal flood damaging homes and contents. This is an increase of 200 percent from the present day risk of a 100-year flood, which is $6.5 million
  • $82 million in tourism spending and local and state tax revenue losses (accumulated between now and 2100) caused by a narrower, eroded beach attracting fewer visitors
  • $16.5 million in habitat and recreation losses, caused by erosion reducing the beach area by 92 percent (53 acres lost). Ocean Beach provides a habitat for native species such as the Western Snowy Plover, a bird that is federally listed as a threatened species
  • $540 million caused by land, buildings and infrastructure being lost or damaged by erosion and subsidence

Venice Beach, Los Angeles County
Based on a sea level rise estimate of 4.6 feet (1.4 meters) by 2100, Venice Beach could lose:

  • $51.6 million in damages caused by a 100-year coastal flood damaging homes, commercial buildings and contents
  • $439.6 million in tourism spending and local and state tax revenue losses (accumulated between now and 2100) caused by a narrower, eroded beach attracting fewer visitors
  • $38.6 million in habitat and recreation losses, caused by erosion reducing the beach area by 16 percent

Zuma Beach and Broad Beach, Malibu, Los Angeles County
Based on a sea level rise estimate of 4.6 feet (1.4 meters) by 2100, Zuma Beach and Broad Beach could lose:

  • $28.5 million in damage caused by a 100-year coastal flood damaging homes, commercial buildings and contents 
  • $498.7 million in tourism spending and local and state tax revenue losses (accumulated between now and 2100) caused by narrower, eroded beaches attracting fewer visitors
  • $102.3 million in habitat and recreation losses caused by erosion reducing the beach area

Carpinteria City and State Beach, Santa Barbara County
Based on a sea level rise estimate of 4.6 feet (1.4 meters) by 2100, Carpinteria City and State Beach could lose:

  • $10.7 million in damages caused by a 100-year coastal flood, damaging homes and contents, and commercial structures
  • $164.7 million in tourism spending and local and state tax revenue losses (accumulated between now and 2100) caused by a narrower, eroded beach attracting fewer visitors
  • $31.3 million in habitat and recreation losses caused by erosion reducing the beach area
  • $300,000 caused by upland areas being lost or damaged by erosion and subsidence

Torrey Pines City and State Beach, San Diego County
Based on a sea level rise estimate of 4.6 feet (1.4 meters) by 2100, Torrey Pines City and State Beach could lose:

  • $5 million in damages caused by a 100-year coastal flood, including damage to homes and contents, cars and roads
  • $99 million in tourism spending and local and state tax revenue losses (accumulated between now and 2100) caused by a narrower, eroded beach attracting fewer visitors
  • $20.2 million in habitat and recreation losses caused by erosion reducing the beach area by 100 percent
  • $348.7 million caused by land, road and railway lines being lost or damaged by erosion and subsidence, including damage to the Los Angeles-San Diego-San Luis Obispo (LOSSAN) Rail Corridor

 

"The Economic Costs of Sea-Level Rise to California Beach Communities" was authored by Philip King, associate professor of economics at San Francisco State University, and research staff Aaron McGregor and Justin Whittet.

The study was commissioned and funded by the California Department of Boating and Waterways and peer-reviewed by the California Ocean Science Trust on behalf of the Ocean Protection Council.

Philip King can be reached at pgking@sfsu.edu.

Copies of the study and high-resolution images are available from Elaine Bible in University Communications at San Francisco State University: (415) 405-3606 or ebible@sfsu.edu



08/30/2011

California Boating and Waterways Commission
Announces First Inductee into Hall of Fame



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

August 30, 2011


Hall of Fame Award Pictures

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) today recognized Vivian Matuk as its first inductee into their “Hall of Fame”.

“This honor is bestowed upon unique individuals who in their own right have become ‘Champions’ of and for California’s boating community,” said Commission’s Chair Lenora S. Clark. “Vivian is known throughout the recreational boating community as a good steward of the environment, the waterways, we all cherish and enjoy. She has won over even the grumpiest of boaters, who weren’t sure whether she was friend or foe when she first began to show how to go about clean boating.”

Vivian Matuk, Environmental Coordinator for the California Department of Boating and Waterways and the California Coastal Commission, heads the Boating Clean and Green Program. She is being recognized for her work not only with these two distinct state departments, but also for her partnerships with volunteer recreational boaters throughout the state and for providing technical assistance to local, state and national governments on clean and safe boating practices. Additionally, she has worked with BoatUS Foundation, Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation, San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission, and marina operators across the state.

Highlights of but a few of her endeavors:

  • Keep the Delta Clean
  • Boating Clean and Green
  • Help Stop the Drops – Clean fueling program
  • Reel In and Recycle – Monofilament fishing line recovery
  • Dockwalkers Program
  • Marine Expired Flare Recovery
  • San Francisco Bay Marinas and Yacht Club Oil Spill Preparedness Group
  • “Changing Tides” Newsletter

Vivian’s determination and follow through combined with her positive attitude and technical knowledge has garnered her respect from the clean boating community and has enabled her to develop effective programs that deliver results. Vivian Matuk was honored with a national award as the 2010 BoatUS Foundation Environmental Leadership Award recipient for helping to make the State of California a leader in clean boating.

 

The Commission’s Hall of Fame recognized unique individuals who have become ‘Champions’ of and for California’s boating community.

The Commission is mandated by the Harbors and Navigation Code to advise the Department of Boating and Waterways on all matters within its jurisdiction.

The Commission must also consent to all boating facilities loans and grants proposed by the department.



08/24/2011

$7.48 Million in Funding for Boating Facilities Approved



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

August 24, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) approved $7.48 million in funding for boating facilities. 

Items approved include:

Channel Islands Boat Launching Facility - Ventura County
The Commission approved a $4.51 million grant to Ventura County for improvements to the Channel Islands boat launching facility. Improvements include: replacement of the existing boat launching ramp with a new six-lane one; construction of a turnaround, ready lanes, restroom, boat wash down area, project credit sign; installation of utilities, lightning, three new boarding floats, slope protection, sidewalks, curbs and storm drainage; parking and entrance reconfiguration and repaving.

Lake Isabella Boat Launching Facility – Kern County
The Commission approved a $470,000 grant to Kern County for improvements to Lake Isabella Reservoir’s boat launching facility. Improvements include replacement of boarding floats and gangways to the five boat launching facilities located around the lake. The project also includes acquisition project credit signs and information bulletin boards.

Santa Cruz Harbor – Santa Cruz County
The Commission approved a $2.5 million loan to Santa Cruz County for improvements to Santa Cruz Harbor’s tsunami related damage. Improvements include replacement of berths, pilings, and associated utilities; repairs to marina facilities; removal of tsunami-related sediment and debris. This project is a continuation of a 2008/2009 rebuild project, which deficiencies were compounded by the tsunami damage of March 2011.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boating launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the seven-member Boating and Waterways Commission.



08/18/2011

Boating and Waterways Commission to Consider $7.48 Million in Funding for Boating Facilities Aug. 24



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

August 18, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) will meet on Aug. 23-24 to consider funding for boating facilities.

On Aug. 23 the Commission is seeking public input on the Department of Boating and Waterways selection criteria for boating facilities loans and grants, as well as for the process for approving grants for the Abandoned Watercraft Abatement Fund Program. For planning purposes, an RSVP to Jared.Zucker@parks.ca.gov is requested from those who may attend the workshop.

On Aug. 24, a Commission meeting will be held to consider $7.48 million in funding for boating facilities. The items which will be considered are listed below.

Both the meeting and public workshop are open to the public and will convene at 9a.m. at the Courtyard by Marriott, 1782 Tribute Road in Sacramento.

Items being considered by the Commission on Aug.24 include:

Channel Islands Boat Launching Facility - Ventura County
The Commission will consider approving a $4.51 million grant to Ventura County for improvements to the Channel Islands boat launching facility. The proposed project includes: replacement of the existing boat launching ramp with a new six-lane one; construction of a turnaround, ready lanes, restroom, boat wash down area, project credit sign; installation of utilities, lightning, three new boarding floats, slope protection, sidewalks, curbs and storm drainage; parking and entrance reconfiguration and repaving.

Lake Isabella Boat Launching Facility – Kern County
The Commission will consider approving a $470,000 grant to Kern County for improvements to Lake Isabella Reservoir’s boat launching facility. The proposed project includes replacement of boarding floats and gangways to the five boat launching facilities located around the lake. The project also includes acquisition project credit signs and information bulletin boards.

Santa Cruz Harbor – Santa Cruz County
The Commission will consider approving a $2.5 million loan to Santa Cruz County for improvements to Santa Cruz Harbor’s tsunami related damage. The proposed project includes replacement of berths, pilings, and associated utilities; repairs to marina facilities; removal of tsunami-related sediment and debris. This project is a continuation of a 2008/2009 rebuild project, which deficiencies were compounded by the tsunami damage of March 2011.

A detailed agenda of the public workshop and the meeting, and information on the Commission may be found at DBW’s Web site www.dbw.ca.gov.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boating launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the seven-member Boating and Waterways Commission.




06/29/2011

California Boating Fatalities and Water Rescues on a Rise



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

June 29, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - As predicted by the Department of Boating Waterways (DBW), this summer is shaping up to be a dangerous one for water enthusiasts, particularly for rivers. More boaters have died in swift water river accidents in the first six months of 2011 than any other comparable period on record.

With water temperatures being extremely cold, outdoor enthusiasts can become incapacitated in just 10 minutes, to the point that the muscles in their limbs stop working and they will no longer be able to swim or rescue themselves. 

“Outdoor enthusiasts in, on and around the water must use caution and be prepared,” stated DBW’s Acting Director Lucia Becerra. “Many rivers will be running faster and higher this 4th of July weekend than in the past years. Water levels in lakes will also be higher, masking underwater hazards that were exposed in previous years.”

The biggest safety concern now is the use of flotation devices such as lightweight rafts which may be designed for swimming pools or calm waters. These flotation devices are dangerous. They can easily lose air or be punctured by debris or tree branches. Use of these types of devices is strongly discouraged during this period of high, swift and cold water conditions.

Knowing what to do in case of a water immersion, understanding the effects of cold water and wearing a life jacket are critical in improving chances of survival. Below are some tips that water enthusiasts should follow to improve their chances of survival:

Know the law

  • A life jacket must be carried for each person on board a boat.
  • Every child under 13 must wear a life jacket when on a boat.
  • Every person on board a personal watercraft (popularly known as jet skis) and any person being towed behind a vessel must wear a life jacket.
  • All life jackets must be Coast Guard-approved.
  • It is against the law to operate a boat or water ski with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more. You can be arrested even when your BAC is less than 0.08 percent if conditions are deemed to be unsafe.

Plan ahead

  • Become knowledgeable about local conditions such as currents, rapids, flow levels, weather, and hazards, including low-head dams and unrunnable rapids.
  • Make sure you have the required equipment on your vessel.
  • File a float plan. The chances of successfully locating an overdue boat are much greater if rescue agencies have certain facts about the boat trip.
  • Swift water information and guides for some of California’s rivers are available on DBW’s Web site.

Know the water

  • The water may look calm on the top, but river currents are usually strong beneath the water’s surface that can carry you away from your safety zone.
  • Many unseen obstacles can be lurking below the water’s surface. Swift water can make these obstacles even more treacherous.
  • An unknown rapid should never be run without first scouting it thoroughly from shore. If in doubt, carry watercraft or cargo over land to avoid river obstacles or hazards.
  • Swimming in open water is more difficult than in a swimming pool – people tire more quickly and can get into trouble.

Know what to do in case of a water immersion

  • Swift water: If you do end up in the river, point your feet downstream. This helps your legs to come in contact with floating debris or rocks first instead of your head.  Stay calm and try to make your way to the shore while floating. Be wary of branches in the river. It may be tempting to reach for a branch, but you can become entangled in the branches and drown. Look for a clear place to get to shore.
  • Calm water: If your boat capsizes and you are in cold water, get as far out of the water as possible by climbing onto any floating object, such a boat’s hull. This may help prevent heat loss from your body, especially if the temperature is warm and the winds are calm. If you cannot get out of the water, keep your head out of the water to limit heat loss. Curl into a ball or huddle with other passengers and restrict movement of arms and legs to further help limit heat loss.
  • Hypothermia: Hypothermia in the early stages can easily be reversed by vigorously exercising to generate body heat and limiting exposure to further cold. High energy foods and warm liquids also help (no caffeine or alcohol).  Except in mild cases, seek medical help as improper rewarming can cause complications or even death.

Parental Supervision

  • Actively supervise children in and around open bodies of water, giving them your undivided attention.
  • Appoint a designated “water watcher”, taking turns with other adults.
  • Teach children that swimming in open water is not the same as swimming in a pool.  They need to be aware of uneven surfaces, river currents, ocean undertow and changing weather.

For more information on boating and water safety, please visit www.BoatSmarter.com

 

The Department of Boating and Waterways enhances public access to California’s waterways and promotes on-the-water safety through programs funded by vessel registration fees, boating fuel tax dollars and boating facility construction loan payments.



06/24/2011

Increased Enforcement of BUI Laws this Weekend
"Operation Dry Water" Part of Nationwide Effort


Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

June 24, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - This weekend, boating law enforcement agencies across the nation will be out in force looking for drunken boat operators. This stepped-up enforcement, known as Operation Dry Water, is part of a national effort to raise awareness on the dangers of operating a boat under the influence of alcohol and/ or drugs. California will also emphasize on the dangers that drunken passengers face. 

“It is important for boat operators and passengers to understand that designating a driver is not enough on vessels,” stated Department of Boating and Waterways Acting Director Lucia Becerra. “The concept works well in cars, but drunken passengers on boats can easily fall overboard, swim near the propeller or cause loading problems by leaning over the side or standing up in small vessels, causing vessels to capsize.”

Alcohol can impair a boater’s judgment, balance, vision and reaction time. It can increase fatigue and susceptibility to the effect of cold-water immersion. Sun, wind, noise, vibration and motion – “stressors” common to the boating environment – intensify the side effects of alcohol, drugs and some prescription medications.

In California, it is against the law to operate a boat or water ski with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more. A person with a BAC less than 0.08 percent may also be arrested if conditions are deemed to be unsafe. If convicted, a person may be sentenced to jail for up to six months and assessed fines of up to $1,000. Two convictions within seven years could add a jail term of up to one year. Boaters caught operating under the influence may also find their voyage terminated and their vessel impounded.

Operation Dry Water puts thousands of local, state and federal marine law enforcement officers on the water the weekend before the Fourth of July weekend to give BUI enforcement high visibility before a holiday known for drinking and boating – and deadly accidents. This year, all 56 U.S. states, trusts and territories are expected to participate in Operation Dry Water, educating the public and searching for boat operators whose blood alcohol concentration exceeds the national limit of .08.

For more information on this annual event, visit http://www.operationdrywater.org. California specific boating laws and safety tips may be found at www.BoatSmarter.com.



06/01/2011

Boating Infrastructure Grants Available for Marina Operators



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

June 1, 2011


 

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Marina operators can now apply for a national boating infrastructure grant (BIG) for transient boat dock improvements through the Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW). The deadline to submit grant proposal applications is Wed., Aug. 17, 2011.

BIG is a national competitive program open to both publicly- and privately-owned marinas with funding totaling $13 million. Eligible projects include installation or upgrades of visitor tie-up facilities for recreational boats 26-feet-long or longer, and renovation or construction of visitor docks, restrooms, gangways and dockside utility hookups. The funds are also used to produce and distribute information and educational materials about the program and recreational boating.

Applicants should first review the federal guidelines, to determine if they meet the necessary requirements. Eligibility criteria and submission information can be obtained by visiting www.dbw.ca.gov/Funding/BIG.aspx or contacting Kevin Atkinson at (916) 327-1788.

DBW is the designated agency responsible for administering U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (USFWS) BIG program in California. USFWS receives the applications from DBW and scores and ranks the proposals using government/ industry review committee. 

 

The Department of Boating and Waterways enhances public access to California’s waterways and promotes on-the-water safety through programs funded by vessel registration fees, boating fuel tax dollars and boating facility construction loan payments



05/25/2011

Boating and Water Safety Officials Predict Dangerous Summer Season for Water Recreationists



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

May 25, 2011


Press Conference Video & Pictures

SACRAMENTO, Calif. –Today, boating and water safety officials held a press conference in Sacramento to warn water enthusiasts to take precautions this summer. This year’s abundant snowfall and spring snowmelt will result in high, swift and cold river flows which create dangerous conditions for all recreationists – waders, swimmers, paddlers, boaters, anglers and even hikers cooling off at the water’s edge. 

Speakers from the Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW), Sacramento City Police Department, and the U.S. Coast Guard shared information on how to improve the chances of an accidental water immersion, pool safety, life jackets laws, and the importance of parental supervision. A water rescue demonstration was also held to show proper self rescue positions.

Last year, 570 recreational boating accidents occurred in California that involved 283 injuries and 49 fatalities. Approximately 75% of the drowning victims were not wearing life jackets. Officials stressed that knowing how to swim does not make swimmers drown-proof. A properly fitted life jacket significantly increases the chances of surviving a boating accident. A life jacket can also provide some thermal protection against the onset of hypothermia and keep you afloat until someone else can rescue you.

A number of DBW boating safety programs encouraging life jacket use will be taking place this summer starting with a life jacket trade-in. This event will take place this Friday, May 27 from 4-6 p.m. at select Kohl’s Department Store locations in Sacramento, and from 1-3 p.m. at Sam’s Club locations in the Bay Area and Los Angeles. 

Water enthusiasts are invited to bring their life jackets for inspection by water safety professionals. If a life jacket is found to be outgrown or unserviceable, a new, properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket will be given in exchange. Life jackets will be available at each site while supplies last.  Click here for a list of locations.

DBW has also partnered with fire stations across California and the CSU Sacramento Aquatic Center to make life jackets available for the public to loan. An individual or family can check out life jackets for a day or a weekend simply by completing a loan form.  Click here for a list of locations.

For more information about life jackets or boating laws, please visit DBW’s Web site.

 

DBW enhances public access to California's waterways and promotes boating and aquatic safety through programs funded by vessel registration fees, boating fuel tax dollars and boating facility construction loan payments.



05/24/2011

LIFE JACKET TRADE-IN MAY 27
Visit Select Locations to Participate



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

May 24, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW), Radio Disney and UC Davis Children's Hospital announce the 12th Annual Life Jacket Trade-In. The event will take place May 27 from 4-6 p.m. at select Kohl's Department Store locations in Sacramento, and from 1-3 p.m. at Sam's Club locations in the Bay Area and Los Angeles.

"Life jacket use is especially important this summer due to this year's abundant snowfall and spring snowmelt, which will result in high cold water levels in rivers and lakes", stated DBW's Acting Director Lucia Becerra. "Properly fitted life jackets significantly increase the chances of surviving a boating accident".

Water enthusiasts are invited to bring their life jackets for inspection by water safety professionals. If a life jacket is found to be outgrown or unserviceable, a new, properly fitted U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket will be given in exchange. Life jackets will be available at each site while supplies last.

As part of the life jacket focus, water safety officials will showcase new inflatable model life jackets. Too many boaters still think of life jackets in out-dated terms, as bright orange, bulky and uncomfortable, which is no longer the case. The new belt pack and over the shoulder model inflatable life jackets allow the needed mobility and flexibility for activities like boating, fishing, paddling, hunting, sunbathing, and are much cooler in warmer weather.

This event is being conducted in connection with National Safe Boating Week (May 21-27) which aims to spread the message about life jacket wear and safe boating practices.

Community partners include Sacramento Safe Kids Coalition, Radio Disney, CBS Radio, Consumnes Fire Department, Drowning Accident Rescue Team, U.S. Power Squadrons and the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

California boating law requires all children under the age of 13, every person on board a personal watercraft (jet skis) or being towed behind a vessel to wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jacket. For more information, please visit www.WearItCalifornia.com.

 

DBW enhances public access to California's waterways and promotes boating and aquatic safety through programs funded by vessel registration fees, boating fuel tax dollars and boating facility construction loan payments



05/23/2011

Boating and Water Safety Press Conference
Officials Predict Dangerous Summer Season for Water Recreationists



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

May 23, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Boating and water safety officials will be holding a press conference this Wednesday, May 25 to warn water enthusiasts to take precautions this summer. This year's abundant snowfall and spring snowmelt will result in high, swift and cold river flows which create dangerous conditions for all recreationists - waders, swimmers, paddlers, boaters, anglers and even hikers cooling off at the water's edge.

Speakers from the Department of Boating and Waterways, Sacramento Fire Department, Safe Kids and the U.S. Coast Guard will share information on how to improve the chances of an accidental water immersion, pool safety, life jackets laws, and the importance of parental supervision. A water rescue demonstration will also be conducted.

Other supporting partners include: Drowning Accident and Rescue Team, KHTK Radio personalities Sep Hendrickson (California Sportsmen) and Kent Brown (Ultimate Bass), Sacramento Sheriff's Department, Sacramento City Police Department, Sacramento Metropolitan Fire, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, and the U.S. Power Squadrons.

WHAT: Press Conference – Boating and Water Safety
   
WHEN: Wednesday, May 25 at 10:00 a.m.
   
WHERE: Embassy Suites Riverfront Promenade
  100 Capitol Mall Sacramento, CA
   
WHO: Department of Boating and Waterways
  U.S. Coast Guard
  Sacramento Fire Department
  Safe Kids

The press conference will start at 10:30 a.m. at the barrage located below the Embassy Suites Riverfront Promenade. Reporters should check in at the media tent to interview spokespersons.



05/09/2011

Jim Harken
Arizona Game & Fish Department
(623) 236-7223 Office
jharken@azgfd.gov

Gloria Sandoval
California Department of Boating & Waterways
(916) 715-1657 Cell
Gloria.Sandoval@parks.ca.gov

Nick Duhe
Nevada Department of Wildlife
(702) 497-0071 Cell
nduhe@ndow.org



Tri-State Boating Safety Fair to Emphasize Life Jacket Wear
Kickoff event scheduled May 21, expanding into summer-long effort



LAS VEGAS – Boating officials from three states are again teaming up to stress life jacket wear at the eighth annual Colorado River Tri-State Boating Safety Fair. As in previous years, this event will feature a life jacket trade-in, free boating safety information, and opportunities to get boating questions answered. This year, boating safety officials are launching follow-up efforts to reach boaters all summer long up and down the Colorado River System.

Families will be given the opportunity to bring in their outgrown or unsafe life jackets to trade-in for brand new U.S. Coast Guard-approved ones (while supplies last).  Boating professionals will also showcase inflatable life jackets as part of the national “Ready, Set, Inflate” campaign that coincides with the safety fair.  After the main event, the three states have teamed up to provide information all summer long at www.BoatColoradoRiver.com and through targeted outreach efforts using social media. 

“Social media is the future, and we know that the best way to reach boaters is where they live online,” said California Department of Boating and Waterway’s Acting Director Lucia C. Becerra. “Boaters want and need information to be safe, so we are going to provide it all summer long.  We know that just the smallest reminder or piece of information can save a life.”

The sixth annual event will be held May 21 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at London Bridge Beach Park, McCulloch Road, Lake Havasu City, Arizona. In addition to the life jacket trade-in, courtesy vessel safety checks will be offered to make sure that boats are ready for the 2011 boating season. Information will be distributed at twenty-seven launch ramps along the river and boating professionals will be on hand to answer any questions boaters may have.

Despite the wide range of information available, boating professionals will continue to emphasize life jackets first and foremost.  “We’ve seen a decrease in fatalities in recent years, but too many people are still drowning for lack of wearing a life jacket,” said David Pfiffner, Nevada’s Boating Law Administrator. “We’re still seeing accidents on nice days in calm water where people simply drown, whether they go for a swim off a boat or accidentally fall over, a person can drown in seconds.  We know that life jackets are the key to reversing these grim statistics.”

As part of the life jacket focus, boating officials will showcase new inflatable model life jackets. Although these devices have been around for years, too many boaters still think of life jackets in 30-year-old terms, as large, goofy looking, orange and uncomfortable, and that’s just not the case today. The new fanny pack and over the shoulder model inflatable life jackets allow the mobility and flexibility for activities like boating, fishing, paddling, hunting or just sunbathing, and are much cooler in warmer weather. To further promote inflatable life jackets, the boaters and visitors on scene will be participating in the national “Ready, Set, Inflate” event at 1 p.m. that features boaters all over the U.S. inflating life jackets on the same day.

The lower Colorado River System is shared by three states, Arizona, California and Nevada.  If taken as its own boating entity, the Colorado River System is the second most dangerous waterway in America, including the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, the Great Lakes, and the Gulf of Mexico.  State lines artificially slice up the system, so the three states have gotten together to talk about the river holistically.  While many laws are congruent, a few laws differ and can be confusing to boaters.  Providing a forum to the millions of Colorado River boaters, to learn about the different boating laws, is crucial in reducing the number of accidents, injuries and fatalities that take place every year. 

Visit BoatColoradoRiver.com for more information about the boating safety fair and the tri-state partnership.

Note to media: Before the event, call for story opportunities, press packets or fact sheets. On the day of the event, reporters should check in at the Media tent for media ride-alongs or to interview spokespersons. High resolution photos from prior years are available. More details are at www.BoatColoradoRiver.com.



05/02/2011

California Encourages Boaters and Marinas to Practice Clean Boating Habits



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

May 02, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California’s Boating Clean and Green Program (BCGP) encourages boaters and marinas to keep waterways clean and healthy, not only on Earth Day but year-round.

“It is important for boaters to not only boat safely, but to also implement environmentally sound boating practices,” stated DBW’s Acting Director Lucia Becerra. “Safety and protecting the environment go hand-in-hand.”

In California, there are more than 900,000 registered boats and an estimated three million people actively boat each year. As more people become involved in boating, there is a need to remind the boating community about convenient pollution prevention services and resources.

One of the program’s most successful partnerships is with the search engine www.earth911.org.  BCGP staff has updated this site with proper disposal sites for oil/fuel absorbent pads, oil, and oil filters. The program’s Web site also has a number of resources and tips to keep California’s waterways clean.  Some of these tips include:

  1. Prevent the discharge of oil from the bilge. Keep your boat engine well tuned to prevent fuel and oil leaks. Place an oil absorbent under the engine where drips may occur and in the bilge. Check the absorbents often and dispose of them as hazardous waste at a marina or nearby collection center. Never use soap to disperse fuel or oil spills, this increases harm to the environment and is illegal. Avoid using bilge cleaners as they may get discharged overboard. Keep your bilge clean and dry.
  1. Spill-proof oil changes and dispose of hazardous waste properly. If you change your boat’s engine oil, be sure to use a closed system (such as a portable oil-change pump), and always have an oil absorbent handy. Drain the used oil into a container that can be closed to prevent spills. Recycle your used oil and oil filters. 
  1. Spill-proof fueling practices. Prevent fuel spills by filling fuel tanks slowly and carefully. Also, use absorbents to catch drips and spills. Do not top-off or overflow your fuel tank. Leave 10 percent of your tank empty to allow fuel to expand as it warms.  Dispose of saturated absorbents and fuel bibs at a hazardous household waste facility.
  1. Minimize boat cleaning and maintenance in the water, and avoid toxic cleaning products. If possible, save maintenance projects for the boatyard. Avoid the docks and over the water projects. When performing work on the water, minimize your impact by containing waste using tarps and vacuum sanders. Make sure to collect all drips and debris for proper disposal. Use cleaners that are water-based, biodegradable, phosphate-free, and labeled as less toxic.
  1. Plan ahead. Manage sewage wastes properly. Use sewage pumpouts, dump stations, mobile pumpout services, or shore-side facilities whenever possible. Never discharge untreated sewage anywhere within the three-mile territorial limit or into shallow waters. Also, never discharge treated sewage into bays, harbors or marinas.
  1. Stow it, do not throw it. Keep your trash on board. Never throw cigarette butts, fishing line or any other garbage into waterways. Take advantage of shore-side facilities to recycle plastic, glass, metal, paper and avoid excess packaging.

For further information about this program and other clean boating tips or resources, please visit our Boating Clean and Green Page.


04/29/2011

$1.59 Million in Grants for Boating Facilities Approved



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

April 29, 2011


SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) approved $1.59 million in boat launching facility grants last Tuesday.

Items approved include:

Westside Park and Doran Beach Boat Launching Facilities – Sonoma County
The Commission approved a $350,000 grant to Sonoma County to fund engineering, design and permitting for rehabilitation of boat launching facilities at Westside Park and Doran Beach. This planning grant is for:

Westside Park: project improvements of the boat turn around area, slurry sealing of half the parking lot, restriping and marking pavement, project credit sign, installation of a concrete apron and boarding floats, addition of a third launch lane to the existing two-lane ramp, floodlights with motion sensors, and improvements to the fish cleaning station. The Commission previously awarded two grants for this facility totaling $452,000.

Doran Beach: project improvements of the boat turn around area, overlay paving of half the parking area, restriping and marking pavement, reinstalling signage, project credit sign, improvements to the fish cleaning station, installation of concrete apron and boarding floats, and a new path. The Commission previously awarded a $280,000 grant for this facility.

Sunbeam Boat Launching Facility –Imperial County
The Commission approved a $295,000 grant to the Imperial County for construction of a boating launching facility at Sunbeam Lake. The new facility will include a two-lane boat launching ramp, parking area, slope protection, and a barrier free walkway to the existing restroom. The Commission previously awarded two grants totaling $180,000 for this facility.

Fields Landing Boat Launching Facility – Humboldt County
The Commission approved a $300,000 grant to the Humboldt County to fund planning, engineering, design, and permits for demolition and reconstruction of the boat launching facility. The Commission previously awarded a $130,000 grant for this facility.

Ruth Lake Boat Launching Facility – Trinity County
The Commission approved a $650,000 grant to the Ruth Lake Community Services District for improvements to the existing Ruth Lake Marina and Ruth Lake Campground boat launching facilities. Improvements include a restroom, boarding floats, log boom and ADA improvements. The Commission previously awarded two grants totaling $350,000 for improvements to this facility.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boat launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the seven-member Boating and Waterways Commission.



03/14/2011

Notice of intent to award RFP CVA 2011, Clean Vessel Multi Media Campaign



02/02/2011

DBW Accepting Grant and Loan Applications
To Enhance Recreational Boating Access



Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

February 02, 2011


SACRAMENTO - The California Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW) is accepting grant and loan applications for the 2012/ 2013 cycle. This funding is awarded on a competitive basis. Deadline to submit an application is May 31, 2011.

Grants are made to qualifying public agencies to fund facilities such as boat launching ramps, boarding floats, and associated parking areas, restrooms and lighting for motorized and non-motorized boaters. Loans are made to qualifying public and private entities to pay for the development and improvement of marinas.

For more information on DBW’s loan and grant application process, please contact Sylvia Hunter at Christopher.Conlin@parks.ca.gov or (916) 263-8165.

 

DBW enhances public access to California’s waterways and promotes on-the-water safety through programs funded by vessel registration fees, boating fuel tax dollars and boating facility construction loan payments



01/28/2011

Become a Dockwalker, Help Keep California's Waterways Clean


Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

January 28, 2011


Images
2011 Dockwalker Training Schedule

SACRAMENTO – The California Department of Boating and Waterways (DBW) and the California Coastal Commission’s Boating Clean and Green Program invite boaters to become Dockwalkers. Training is free and Dockwalking is a fantastic way to interact with boaters to help keep California’s marinas, waterways, and ocean clean and healthy.

“It is important for boaters to not only boat safely, but to also implement environmentally sound boating practices,” stated DBW’s Acting Director Lucia Becerra. “Safety and protecting the environment go hand in hand.”

The Dockwalker Program educates boaters to be safe and environmentally sound while boating in California through its volunteer Dockwalkers. The volunteers are trained to conduct face-to-face boater education and distribute boater kits with educational materials while visiting marinas, boat launch ramps, boat shows and events.  Hours spent training or educating the public qualify as community service.

Marinas also benefit from the Dockwalker Program. Involvement in this program provides marinas with the educational materials and tools to operate a clean boating facility and minimize water quality impacts.

Attached you will find the 2011 Dockwalker Training Schedule. The training schedule, as well as other clean and green information, may be found at www.dbw.ca.gov (click on Clean & Green tab). The program coordinator, Vivian Matuk, may also be contacted at vmatuk@coastal.ca.gov or (415) 904-6905.

Partnerships with the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation, the Keep the Delta Clean Program, and many more organizations have made this program successful. Since the year 2000, more than 600 volunteers have become Dockwalkers and more than 90,000 boater kits have been distributed throughout California.

 

The Boating Clean & Green Program is an education and outreach program conducted through the California Department of Boating and Waterways and California Coastal Commission. The program promotes environmentally-sound boating practices to marine business and boaters.



01/26/2011

$300,000 in Grants for Boating Facilities Approved


Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

January 26, 2011


SACRAMENTO - The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) today approved $300,000 in boat launching facility grants.  The Commission also approved a change in scope to a previously approved boat launching facility.  Items approved include:

Tisdale Boat Launching Facility – Sutter County
The Commission approved a $100,000 grant to Sutter County for improvements to the Tisdale Boat Launching Facility. Funds will be used to install a cable-guided boarding float system.

Lake Mendocino Boat Launching Facility – Mendocino County
The Commission approved a $200,000 grant to the United States Army Corps of Engineers for improvements to the Lake Mendocino Boat Launching Facility. Funds will be used to replace the north and south ramps with cable-guided boarding floats.

Shelter Boat Launching Facility – San Diego County
The Commission approved a change in scope to a previously approved project at San Diego Unified Port District’s Shelter Island Boat Launching Facility. The change entails enlarging the boat ramp basin. The Commission requested a project update to be presented at a future commission meeting.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boating launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the seven-member Boating and Waterways Commission.



01/24/2011

Boating and Waterways Commission to Consider $300,000 in Grants for Boat Launching and Facility Improvements


Contact:  Gloria Sandoval (916) 651-5692

January 24, 2011


 

SACRAMENTO - The California Boating and Waterways Commission (Commission) will meet Jan. 26 in Sacramento to consider $300,000 in boat launching facility grants. The Commission will also consider a change in scope to a previously approved boat launching facility. The meeting is open to the public and will convene at 8:30 a.m. at the Courtyard by Marriott, 1782 Tribute Road.

Items being considered by the Commission include:

Tisdale Boat Launching Facility - Sutter County
The Commission will consider approving a $100,000 grant to Sutter County for improvements to the Tisdale Boat Launching Facility. The proposed project includes the installation of a cable-guided boarding float system. Two grants for this project totaling $1.676 million have been previously approved by the Commission. These grants were used to construct a new boat launching facility.

Lake Mendocino Boat Launching Facility - Mendocino County
The Commission will consider approving a $200,000 grant to the United States Army Corps of Engineers for improvements to the Lake Mendocino Boat Launching Facility. The proposed project includes the replacement of boarding floats at the north and south ramps with cable-guided boarding floats. In 1993, the Commission approved a $338,000 grant to make improvements to the north ramp.

Shelter Boat Launching Facility - San Diego County
The Commission will consider a change in scope to a previously approved project -- San Diego Unified Port District's Shelter Island Boat Launching Facility. The scope change is for enlarging the boat ramp basin. This proposal makes no state commitment for additional funding. Previously approved Commission grants total $1,675,000.

A detailed agenda of the meeting and information on the Commission may be found at http://www.dbw.ca.gov/Commission/.

 

Grant and loan applications are submitted to the Department of Boating and Waterways and funding for approved projects is derived from the taxes paid by boaters on the purchase of vessel gasoline and the repayment of principal and interest on department-made loans.

The department provides grants to a county, city, district or other public agency for the construction of small craft boating launching facilities and loans to local agencies for the construction of small craft harbors. These grants and loans require the consent of the seven-member Boating and Waterways Commission.