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America Outdoors E-News

May 5, 2008

 
Funding Source for NPS Centennial Bill Still Debated but HR 3094 Scheduled for Committee Mark-up This Week Are You Making the Most From Your Cash Flow?
Canada Implements New River Rafting Regulations U.S. Coast Guard Complains about Rescues of Coastal Kayakers - More Regulation on the Horizon?
Advertise on AdventureVacation.com Purchase QuickBooks Pro for Windows
   
Funding Source for NPS Centennial Bill Still Debated but HR 3094 Scheduled for Committee Mark-up This Week
 

A bill that proposes to add $100 million per year for ten years to the budget for the National Park Service is scheduled for mark-up in the House of Representative Committee on Natural Resources on Wednesday. Only 30% of the funds can be used for construction. The remainder will be used:

  • to improve diversity and access for youth education in Parks to enable them to become lifelong advocates;
  • to train NPS employees and hire up to 3,000 additional rangers;
  • for an Environmental Leadership Initiative designed to reduce harmful emissions in Parks and to spread these technologies to the private sector and other agencies;
  • for Natural Resource Protection to restore native ecosystems and control invasive species.

A key issue for AO members is where the money will come from. The original bill proposed to raise funds from new fees on commercial activities on federal lands, meaning outfitters and guides among others on all lands under the auspices of the Secretary of Interior. AO has expressed opposition to this provision. That "offset" is still being debated as the bill heads for mark-up. The Senate bill seeks funding from royalties from Outer Continental Shelf offshore oil and gas exploration. The goal of the bill is to raise $1 billion from the federal budget and private sources over 10 years.

   
Canada Implements New River Rafting Regulations
  Canada has imposed new country wide rafting regulations. According to the news release, the regulations are designed for the following purposes.

"These proposed regulations are an important step forward to help ensure that a set of comprehensive and consistent standards protect participants in commercial river rafting excursions across the country," said Minister Cannon. They also demonstrate Canada's New Government's commitment to ensuring the safety of all Canadians on our waterways."

The proposed regulations will establish minimum standards for commercial river rafting, and apply them to all waters in Canada, instead of limiting the regulatory regime to the waters specified in the Boating Restriction Regulations. Therefore, all commercial river rafting requirements will be contained in one regulation and provide a more effective and consistent application of safety standards across the country.
They will address such matters as vessel and safety equipment requirements; operational requirements, such as the wearing of life jackets by all participants; and the keeping of records for three years after an excursion including the name(s) of the guide(s), the date of the excursion, the number of passengers on the excursion, a geographical description of the waters on which the excursion took place, the contents of the safety briefing and a copy of the rescue plan.

The updated and renamed Vessel Operation Restriction Regulations make it possible for local authorities to apply to Transport Canada to place restrictions on the access of a vessel or class of vessels to specified waters.
   
Are You Making the Most from Your Cash Flow?
  Check out the best rates on CD's, cash sweep accounts, and other interest bearing accounts at http://www.bankrate.com/.
   
U.S. Coast Guard Complains about Rescues of Coastal Kayakers - More Regulation on the Horizon?
  The specter of additional regulations for coastal kayaking, especially self-guided kayakers, is increasing as the U.S. Coast Guard finds itself spending more time rescuing inexperienced paddlers. The sale of inexpensive touring kayaks is the largest market segment in the U.S. and many new paddlers are taking to the open water without proper instruction or an awareness of the associated dangers.

According to a USA Today article on May 1st :"Paddling represents our greatest risk in the recreational boating community," says John Fetterman, a member of the Maine Marine Patrol and president of the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. For rescue teams, it's become "a huge drain."


Generally, the state's are becoming more aggressive in regulating paddling and often propose registration of canoes, kayaks and rafts to fund their activities.
   
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  Put your company's name in front of the public by taking a Spotlight ad on AdventureVacation.com. A World Spotlight for six months is $500.

You can advertise for 12 months or 6 months. Space is limited. Call the AO office or click here for more advertising information.
   
Purchase QuickBooks Pro for Windows
  Purchase QuickBooks Pro for Windows Purchase QuickBooks Pro for Windows and receive Learning QuickBooks for Windows FREE ($40 Value) + Free Shipping & Pro Discount.

Special offer for America Outdoors members, click onQuickBooks Offer not available through Quickbooks.com

Also $50 off enhanced payroll. Offer Dates: May 5th to May 31st, 2008.
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