Minnesota state legislators are moving forward with chaperone boater education legislation (SF3392, HF3787) that would expand the state’s existing junior operator requirements to eventually phase in all boaters. Introduced by Senator Carrie Ruud (R) and Representative Erin Koegel, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) has lent its support to these bills in its greatest effort to establish and increase boater education across the country. .
Jill Sims, Great Lakes policy and engagement manager for NMMA, recently wrote an opinion piece published in Duluth Newsstandhighlighting the bipartisan nature of companion bills, a rarity in the St. Paul capitol, and calls on the legislature to adopt this safe and sensible legislation.
The opinion piece can be read in its entirety below, or online at Duluth Newsstand.
As we fast approach our beloved boating season in Minnesota, it’s important to examine where our favorite hobby lies. In the past two years, the number of Minnesotans embracing boating as a new recreational activity has grown rapidly, with the Department of Natural Resources reporting that Minnesota has added 16,000 motorized boats since 2019. Minnesota is a leader in boating registrations in nationwide, second in the nation only to Florida, with a total of 830,000 boat registrations last year.