SOBA Newsletter - August 2012  

Letter from the President

Dear SOBA Members and Friends:

I’m looking forward to seeing you in Mobile, Alabama, September 10-13 for the 26th National Boating Access Conference sponsored by SOBA. Terry Boyd and his team have put together an educational and informative program for us, together with an excellent field trip and some first class social activities. It will also be good for us to again meet with the many exhibitors who faithfully support our Conference year after year, and to visit with some new exhibitors too. It’s always worthwhile learning about new products, materials and techniques that pertain to boating and boating access. GatorDock is once again our Platinum Conference Sponsor, and we are thankful to them for this level of support to SOBA for so many years. So, if you haven’t already made plans, please do your best to attend this year’s conference, we will certainly enjoy your company!

Full details about the conference can be downloaded from our website at Please note the Federal Aid Workshop on Monday, September 10, and our Engineering Concurrent Sessions on Wednesday, September 12. In addition, on Wednesday, SOBA’s Task Force on Invasive Species, led by Forrest Boe will present its findings. I think we will all find this to be a highly informative and interesting session, as invasive species issues keep growing all over the country.

As many of you know, for the past few years the SOBA Board has worked hard attempting to obtain funding to conduct a national boating access needs assessment. Our third major attempt is this year, and so far we are still in the “hunt”. Our grant proposal: “Enhancing Fishing Access Through a National Assessment of Recreational Boating Access” will be considered for funding at the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ (AFWA) meeting September 9-12 in Hilton Head, South Carolina, so it’s possible we might learn of the result while we are at our meeting in Mobile. The SOBA Board is excited, because this year is the furthest we have ever gone in the competitive AFWA Multistate Conservation Grant Program selection process. Our proposal builds on a strong partnership with RBFF, NMMA, BoatU.S., AMI, and Responsive Management. Let’s be optimistic that this project, originally initiated through James Adams and Wayne Shuyler, will be successful this year.

For me this year has gone fast, and I’ve greatly appreciated serving as your President and working closely with the Executive Board members, and our Executive Director Bernice McArdle. The strength of SOBA, however, lies in you its members and partners. SOBA is the only national organization fully devoted to the issues of providing public recreational boating access and facilities nationwide. This is a unique role, and when you consider that 95.5 % of all registered boats in the US are small trailerable boats under 26 feet, you can immediately understand how important the work you do is. The Executive Board and I truly appreciate all you do to help SOBA continue to fill its critically important role in fostering public recreational boating access.

Steve Miller
SOBA President

2012 SOBA Conference in Mobile, Alabama

The Alabama gang is busy making the final preparations for SOBA’s 2012 National Boating Access Conference Accessing New Horizons, scheduled for September 10-13 at the Battlehouse Renaissance Hotel, Mobile, Alabama. The Battlehouse is an exceptional hotel that stands on the site of an old military headquarters set up by Andrew Jackson during the war of 1812, and situated in the heart of historic Mobile. This notable hotel offers first-class accommodations with a luxury spa and fitness center. We have a busy program planned and a copy of our agenda is available online HERE. A copy of our spouse program is also included on our website, which includes a half day of shopping and lunch at historic downtown Fairhope. It also includes a day at our beautiful white sugar sand gulf coast beaches at Gulf State Park. Bring your sun screen and beach towel!

Gulf State Park Pier

Gulf State Park Pier

Our event kicks off Monday September 10th with a free Federal Aid Workshop for conference attendees. Our opening reception takes place on Monday evening from 6 – 7pm. We also have a seafood bash, pig pulling and delta boat tours at our 5 Rivers Delta Center scheduled for Tuesday September 11th.

Five Rivers Delta Center

Pig Pulling

We have the world-famous Ray Scott, founder of BASS, as our banquet speaker on Wednesday night. I am sure you will be enlightened, informed and entertained by Mr. Scott. We have many other exciting activities planned as well.

For those of you flying into Mobile, we will have shuttle service from the airport to the hotel running approximately every 30 minutes, from noon to 6pm on Sunday, and 8am – 6pm on Monday. If your arrival time is outside of these: email, before Friday, September 7th; if after that call (334) 868-9774 and speak to Sonny Foster and they will try to accommodate your requests. The shuttle vans (two 13-passenger vans and several Tahoes) will be located outside the main baggage claim area, and will be marked with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Seal.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact Bernice McArdle at 312-946-6280 or

Meanwhile, we look forward to welcoming you in Mobile in early September. If you have not already done so, please contact the hotel immediately to reserve your rooms at our discounted rate of $100 before August 31st. A link to the hotel’s online reservation system is available on our WEBSITE. Be sure to also explore the hotel’s website to discover the many attractions the area has to offer.

Sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities are still available, and interested parties can contact Terry Boyd at to discuss options.

Look forward to seeing you all.
The Alabama Gang

What SOBA Members Said…

During a recent online survey we asked for member input on four questions.

Has Your State started using Sport Fish Restoration funds for non-motorized boating development?

• The majority of members said, “No” - 78% • The 22% of “Yes” responses indicated that the majority of sites were a mixture of motorized and non-motorized boating use.

What construction guidelines are you using for siting, use analysis, level of development etc.?

• The majority of responses identified SOBA Guidelines followed by ASHTO, ADA and In-house design.

Has anyone completed within the last three years an update to their State Plan for boating access or Clean Vessel Act facilities?

• Approximately 94% of members said “No”

Have you worked or do you work with National Wildlife Refuge System to incorporate boating access?

• The majority of members indicated “No” 72%. • However 28% said “Yes” for motorized and non-motorized boating access.

Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Grant Updates

We hope you are all enjoying a wonderful summer of outdoor activities, whether it be boating, fishing, or anything else that gives you time with nature. We continue the celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program. During this year, many States and other partners have participated in the celebration by telling the story and supporting the greatest conservation effort in the world. We thank you all for being a part of the success.

Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) became Public Law 112-141 when the President signed it on July 6, 2012. This law continues what we often refer to as the “Transportation Bill” and buried behind all the language that addresses roads, bridges, and trails is Title IV—Sport Fish Restoration and Recreational Boating Safety Act of 2012. This amends 16 U.S.C. § 777c which describes the funding for Coastal Wetlands, Boating Safety, Clean Vessel Act, Boating Infrastructure, National Outreach and Communication, and administration. MAP-21 makes no changes to the percentages and extends authorization through Fiscal Year 2014. After ten extensions to SAFETEA-LU starting October 1, 2009, one as short as 6 days, we now have authorization for funding through the next two fiscal years.

Effective August 31, 2011, we revised 50 CFR 80, which in part governs the Recreational Boating Access subprogram. In November 2011, we talked to interested partners who questioned the new language at section 80.51(b) because it dropped the previous requirement that recreational boating access facilities must accommodate boats with any size of motor that could be reasonably accommodated on the body of water. We sent a notice explaining the change to all States, Commonwealths, territories, and the District of Columbia (States) and offering all recipients of the notice an opportunity to comment through an online survey, telling us which version they preferred and why.

SURVEY: The survey contained 5 questions. The first question presented the exact language in the 2008 rule and the 2011 rule and we asked survey takers to choose which they prefer. The second question asked survey takers to tell us why they preferred their choice in question 1. The third question gave an opportunity to comment on any other section in 50 CFR 80. Questions 4 and 5 asked only information about the person completing the survey and their contact information.

The survey was available from February 22 – April 12, 2012. We received 46 responses representing 41 States, Puerto Rico, and D.C. Of the 46 responses, 42 were in favor of the current (2011) language and 4 were in favor of the prior (2008) language.

We appreciate all who participated in the survey and took the time to give their opinion and the reasons for their choice. We were able to affirm that most States will continue to build facilities for motorized recreational vessels, but also that most States want the option to do other projects if they chose to do so and if the priorities change in their State.
The Boating Infrastructure Grant Program (BIG) provides grants to States, the District of Columbia and insular areas to construct, renovate, and maintain boating infrastructure facilities with features for transient boaters in recreational vessels at least 26 feet in length, and to produce and distribute information and educational materials about the program and available facilities.

We published The Notice of Availability of Grants and Request for Applications at CFDA # 15.622 on The deadline for applications is September 19, 2012.

NEW for 2012:
• You must submit applications through instead of mail or email.
• You must follow updated guidance on submitting budget information.

States may apply for BIG Tier 1, Basic funding for up to $100,000 per State. States may apply for Tier 2, Competitive funding for up to $1.5 million per project. Projects may be located at public or private marinas and done in partnership with the State.

We recommend that you send applications for BIG Tier 2, Competitive grants to your Service Regional WSFR Office at least 4 weeks prior to the deadline if you wish to receive Service comments and/or suggestions on applications.

Since 2000, BIG has awarded almost $150 million in grants. This represents the efforts of 44 States, the 5 Commonwealths/territories, the District of Columbia, and the relationships cultivated with hundreds of partners to bring about 411 Tier1, Basic State grants and over 150 Tier 2, Competitive project grants.

BIG projects often need months or years of planning, organizing, and developing partnerships – and that is prior to applying for a grant. After the grant application is prepared, submitted, and a grant awarded the real work begins. The success of BIG is a tribute to all who have worked many hours to make these projects happen.
We published the Proposed Rule for the Boating Infrastructure Grant Program (BIG) on March 28, 2012 with a 60-day comment period, ending May 29, 2012. We received 22 public submissions. Fifteen of the submissions contained substantive comments and 11 of the submissions asked for additional time to review the Proposed Rule. We received comments that expressed both full support and suggested changes.

We determined that to best serve the public, we should address the comments we received and provide an additional comment period. This allows us to respond to comments received, clarify the rule where we identify misunderstandings or unclear guidance, and explain decisions for rule content. We will publish an amended Proposed Rule in the Federal Register and will give the public another 60-day comment period. We plan to publish the amended proposed rule in August or September 2012.

To maintain an open and fair process for receiving information from all interested parties, we must ensure our communication about an active rule involves the public at large. We cannot receive comments on the BIG proposed rule between the close of the first comment period and until we publish the amendment. When we publish the amendment, we encourage you to consider the changes, the reasoning we give for decisions to change or not to change sections of the rule, and make comments.

We cannot stress enough how important it is to receive comments, both positive and negative, and the reasoning behind your comments. You may see something in the Proposed Rule that you are very happy to see changed, but if you do not tell us, and other comments reflect a negative perception, you may not see your positive change in the Final Rule. When you give reasons for your comments, it helps us to understand why something does or does not work for your program, which in turn leads to a better rulemaking. You are an important part of the process. We thank all those who took the time to give us comments during the first 60-day comment period and look forward to your comments during the next 60-day comment period.
Congress passed the Clean Vessel Act of 1992 twenty years ago and established a grant program to provide funds to States, the District of Columbia, and insular areas for the construction, renovation, operation, and maintenance of pumpout stations and waste reception facilities for recreational boaters. Grants also offer funds for educational programs that inform boaters of the importance of proper disposal of their sewage.

On June 11, 2012, we announced $ 11.4 million in grants to 24 States for the 2012 CVA awards. This brings the total of CVA grants over the past 20 years to almost $200 million. Considering that most pumpout facilities likely cost less than $20,000, this represents hundreds of projects and thousands of gallons of waste successfully kept from polluting recreational waters. We thank State coordinators, partnering marinas, interest organizations, and the small community of pumpout vendors – all who remain accessible and loyal to the program - for keeping CVA active and vital.

We want to celebrate the accomplishments of the CVA program and encourage States to send us success stories which we will post on the WSFR website. Please send your success stories to <

CVA Success Story - Detroit Lake, Oregon
Detroit Lake is the highest used lake in Oregon with nearly 72,000 boat use days each year. Although this may not seem like much approximately 95% of the boater activities take place over a five-month period. In 1991, CVA helped install the first floating restroom which captured approximately 800 gallons of concentrated boater sewage. Floating restrooms are extremely popular with boaters. In fact, there are now three floating restrooms on Detroit Lake collecting an average of 5,500 gallons of boater sewage during the five month boating season.
The National Coastal Wetlands program is a competitive grant program that provides funding for long-term conservation of coastal wetland ecosystems by helping States and territories to protect, restore and enhance coastal wetlands. In January, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service requested applications for the 2013 awards, with a deadline of June 29. The Service is in the process of reviewing applications for eligibility and the National Review Panel will meet in Texas the week of October 16 – 19 to score applications. We expect to announce the 2013 awards by December 2012.

You may contact Christy Vigfusson, WSFR Branch of Programs, for more information about boating grant programs. Email Christy

You may contact Lisa Van Alstyne, WSFR Branch of Policy, for more information about regulations and policy for all WSFR programs. Email Lisa
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published a Notice in the Federal Register on August 10, 2012 in compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act. Whenever the Federal Government collects information from more than 9 people, the Office of Management and Budget must approve the agency asking for the information and issues an OMB Control Number. The current OMB control number for the Service to collect applications, amendments, and performance reports to support WSFR grants is 1018-0109. The Notice published August 10 requests comments specifically related to the information collection for Wildlife Tracking and Reporting for the Conservation of Species (Wildlife TRACS). It describes the information to be collected and estimates the completion time per response. The public has 60 days to submit comments on the proposal.

This Notice does not establish a Fish and Wildlife Service policy or regulation to mandate any action. It is a notice of a proposed information collection to obtain OMB's permission to ask applicants and grantees to voluntarily enter specific information into Wildlife TRACS.

You may view the Notice HERE.

You may submit comments by mail to: Service Information Collection Clearance Officer, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, MS 2042-PDM, 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22203

You may email comments to Please include “1018-WSFR Application and Performance Reporting” in the subject line of your comments.

Staff contact: Ron Regan;
Following up on the article in Directors' Line (see below), Congress passed the transportation reauthorization bill. The Senate passed the bill by a 74-19 vote margin, and the House vote was 373-52. The president signed the bill into law. Unfortunately, the final bill did not include $1.4 billion for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which was included in the Senate version of the bill.
from Directors' Line


The Senate-House Conference Committee reconciled the differences between their highway transportation bills to reach an agreement. A critical section of the compromise reauthorizes the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund—Wallop-Breaux—to continue capturing revenue from the part of the federal fuel tax attributable to motor boat and small engine use.

The conference report also modifies the RESTORE the Gulf Coast Act, which was reported out of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee last September. The provision establishes the Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund as the repository for 80% of the Clean Water Act penalties from the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Sportfish Council Update
New SFBPC term begins in a hurried pace

The new term of the Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council that began in May of this year, picked up where the last Council left off: with a full plate of issues that run the gambit from Federal outdoor recreation initiatives to the future of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS) Fisheries Program. These and a host of other strategic issues were discussed at the June 5&6, 2012, meeting of the SFBPC. The meetings conclusion portends a busy 2-year term Council members.

Some of the first business conducted by Council members was selecting officers for our new term. I was honored by my colleagues by being selected to serve another term as SFBPC Chairman. The most recent Vice Chairman, Doug Boyd, was term limited in that capacity. As a result, Council members selected Scott Kovarovics, National Conservation Director for the Izaak Walton League of America, as the new Vice Chairman. This will be Scott’s second term on the Council. He was a very active member during his first term and I look forward to working with him in his new role in moving the SFBPC forward in addressing our Strategic Issues Work Plan.

The SFBPC also had several new primary and alternate members join the group for the first time. All of these members were at the June meeting and had the opportunity to get up to speed on the many programs and issues that the SFBPC addresses in the course of its activities. I am certain that all of these folks will “hit the ground running” and I look forward to them bringing their individual and organizational expertise to bear on the work of the Council.

As far as issues to be addressed over the next 2 years, these are varied. The Council will continue to provide advice to the FWS and the Department of the Interior on ways to increase recreational opportunities through the implementation of the America’s Great Outdoors Initiative and the National Wildlife Refuge System Vision for the Future. We will also continue to monitor the suite of boating programs funded through the FWS’ Sport Fish Restoration Program. We will continue to monitor the activities of the Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation, as well as the implementation of the National Fish Habitat Partnership.

That said, in the near-term, the SFBPC will be focusing much of its attention on the future of the FWS Fisheries Program. This is not the first time the Council has played a major role in helping revise and update the structure of this critical program. A little over 10 years ago the SFBPC helped bring the Program’s partners and stakeholders together to provide critical recommendations submitted to the FWS to help refocus the program. Unfortunately, the program once again finds itself facing challenges in the role it plays in conserving our Nation’s fish and aquatic resources. As a result, the SFBPC has been asked by the FWS to again play a role in helping offer thoughtful advice on how to focus the program for future success.

Why do I bring this up in an update to members of the States Organization for Boating Access? Well, as many of you know, the boating public that you serve is likely to be out on the water to test their meddle in landing one of the many fish species that State fish and wildlife agencies manage so ably on their behalf. While the FWS Fisheries Program does not likely manage those species targeted by your customers, it is a critical partner of State agencies in helping them meet their conservation goals. Without the unique tools in the Fisheries Program toolbox that assist the States mange healthy fish populations and healthy aquatic habitats, States will face greater challenges in securing these conservation outcomes. Recreational boating and angling opportunities could suffer as a result.

So with all this in mind, the SFBPC has engaged a broad array of partners and stakeholders to help undertake a thorough examination of what a 21st century FWS Fisheries Program might look like. We will share our work and the work of a Fisheries Strategic Plan Steering Committee as products become available. You can monitor this work or sign up to provide your feedback at

While the issues are many and complex, I and the new membership of the SFBPC are looking forward to a busy term. As our work unfolds, I will keep you updated through the SOBA newsletter. I look forward to seeing you all at SOBA's Annual Boating Access Conference in Mobile, Alabama.

Delaware Boat Ramp dedicated in honor of Lacy Nichols

Lacy Nichols was recently honored by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control by having a boat ramp dedicated in his name. Lacy attended the event and grand opening along with other dignitaries including Delaware Governor Jack Markell and Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons.

HERE is a press release on the event.

SOBA members wishing to congratulate Lacy on this achievement can contact him at his home:

Lacy Nichols 131 Rodrick Terrace Dover Delaware 19901 Tel: 302-674-4287

2013 SOBA Conference in Portland, Oregon
It's Coming Next Year!

The Oregon State Marine Board is proud to host the 27th Annual National Boating Access Conference in beautiful Portland, Oregon. Conference dates are Monday, September 30 through Thursday, October 3.

The Hilton DoubleTree Hotel and Conference Center, located at 1000 NE Multnomah Street, will be the conference headquarters and is easily accessible from the airport by MAX, Portland’s award-winning light rail.

The theme of the Conference is New Dimensions in Boating Access. Befitting Oregon’s reputation as a leader in sustainability and environmental programs, educational sessions will highlight new materials and designs that are ecologically friendlier. In addition, the conference will look at the growing popularity of paddle craft and other water sports and the challenges states face in meeting traditional boating access needs along with the needs of other waterway users.

The agenda is still evolving and we welcome potential session topics and speakers that would fit with the conference theme. Monday will continue to follow a workshop format and Thursday is still the day for the field trip. You can expect each of these days to fit into the overall theme of the Conference.

More information about the 2013 Conference will be coming in the months ahead. And look for our display at the Mobile Conference where we will have general information about Portland and other travel opportunities in Oregon.

Potential speakers and vendors should contact Wayne Shuyler (503-378-2605 or or Janine Belleque (503-378-2628 or

RBFF Update

The TMF website received 1.6 million unique visitors, including 1.1 million unique visits to the ‘where to’ pages and 1.12 million unique visitors to the ‘how to’ pages. Traffic to these pages are all well above the projected goals. The Take Me Fishing Facebook fans doubled from 60,000 to 120,000.

“This is a Test” PSA (for print, radio and TV) is running and allows state partners to add their contact information to the closing or bottom of the spot/ad.

A Hispanic language marketing adaptation of Take Me Fishing, which was developed in partnership with the Texas Department of Wildlife and Parks, will roll out in August.

The Take Me Fishing mobile site was recognized as a Webby Honoree. RBFF also received multiple Communicator Awards: received multiple Gold Awards of Excellence, and and the Boat Ramp App received a Silver Award of Distinction.

Through a partnership with Discover Boating, RBFF developed a “Beginner’s Guide to Boating” booklet (in English and Spanish). The printed Guide will be handed out at events across the country.

More than three million direct mail pieces were sent through RBFF’s 35 state fishing partners and 15 state boating partners as part of the State Fishing & Boating Marketing Programs, to encourage lapsed anglers and boaters to renew their license and/or registration.

RBFF expanded the Explore the Blue program, creating new educational materials for grades 6 – 8. Many of the program materials will also be translated into Spanish.

RBFF awarded education grants to the following entities:

• International Game Fish Association (IGFA) – to provide students and teachers with a variety of activities including fishing clinics, live touch tank demonstrations, safe boating practice sessions, and casting, rigging and knot-tying demonstrations.
• National Recreation & Park Association (NRPA) – to brings resources to local communities through its park and recreation facilities across the country to ensure a future for active, healthy youth engaged in sport and the outdoors.
• The Club de Pesca Program (of Centro Hispano of Dane County, WI) – to introduce Hispanic children (ages 6-13) and their families to fishing and boating through sustained conservation and aquatic education, as well as multiple on-the-water fishing experiences.
• Living Classrooms of National Capital Region (LC-NCR) – to engage underserved Washington, DC children and their families through on-the-water boating and fishing experiences throughout the DC Metro Area.
• Fishing Education Foundation (National Fishing in Schools) – for a teacher-focused program to engage children and young adults (grades 6-12) using multi-platform, experiential learning centered on fishing, boating, aquatic resources, and conservation.

The Special Report on Fishing & Boating, conducted by RBFF and the Outdoor Foundation, provides detailed information on boating and fishing participation by gender, age, ethnicity, income, education and geographic region. This fourth annual report gathered information on the fishing “churn” rate, potential new fishing participants and boating participation.

The final report report can be viewed HERE.

The Board completed work on a revised Strategic Plan for the Foundation, which will be implemented over the next three years. The Plan will continue to emphasize existing successful programs, such as state partnerships, as well as look to expand boating and fishing participation through new programs aimed at underrepresented populations. Some programs such as Anglers’ Legacy and the social media site Fishington will likely be phased out or reduced in scope.

Four new members joined the Board of Directors: Dr. Kevin Hunt, Chris Edmonston, Jeff Kinsey, and Maurice Bowen.

California Boating merging with State Parks

From the California Governor's Office: The most comprehensive overhaul of state government in decades became official on July 3rd, 2012 following legislative approval of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.’s Reorganization Plan. The Governor’s plan, which will be implemented over the next year, cuts the number of state agencies from 12 to 10 and eliminates or consolidates dozens of departments and entities.

The rest of the press release can be viewed HERE. A summary of the plan as well as the plan in full can be linked from the press release as well.

AMI Gears Up For Fall Events

The International Marina Institute (IMI), a subsidiary of the Association of Marina Industries (AMI), has planned three events for the end of October that will take place just before the start of the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. Marina Makeover: An Interactive Experience is a unique, one-of-a-kind interactive case-study analysis workshop based on IMI’s Advance Marina Management course. Taking place October 21–22 in Boca Raton, FL, the guided workshop will help marina professionals learn from one another and enhance their knowledge of running and maintaining a solid, successful marina. During the event, participants will break into groups to analyze a marina property, have the opportunity to talk to industry vendors about their re-design plans, and will present their findings to the entire group. This is a hands-on opportunity and promises to provide insight into marina re-design, best profit ideas, and new marketing techniques.

Also, hands-on is the Southeast Florida Marina & Boatyard Study Tour which directly follows the Marina Makeover Workshop from October 23–24. This mobile classroom provides a first-hand look at the inner workings of a number of different types of facilities and gives participants a chance to talk to marina managers about their businesses. During this year’s Study Tour, participants will visit eight marina and boatyard properties for private, exclusive tours and then join a discussion to perform a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis on each property. The roundtable discussion will be facilitated by Jim Bronstien, owner of marine business ventures.

For marina owners, AMI is planning a new Owners Forum that will take place October 23–24 at The Riverside Hotel in Fort Lauderdale, FL. The two-day facilitated event is designed exclusively for marina owners. During the forum, marina owners will participate in interactive leadership roundtable discussions supplemented by numerous opportunities to meet with other owners to talk about the issues that matter most and how to strengthen their business. A personalized and targeted agenda that answers the questions and challenges marina owner’s face will be the highlight of the forum. Closed door sessions to promote candid conversations and one-on-one small group networking with other owners will also be a focus. Agenda topics include an economic update and outlook, boater demographics, industry trends, financing and property values, and the regulatory and legislative landscape.

To learn more about all of these events or to register, visit HERE.


Board of Directors

Steven W. Miller
Director, Bureau of
Facilities & Lands
Wisconsin Department of
Natural Resources
P.O. Box 7921
Madison, WI 53707-7921
Tel: 608-266-5782
Fax: 608-267-2750
Cell: 608-347-1136

Terry Boyd
Chief Engineer
Alabama Dept.of Conservation & Natural Resources
64 North Union Street, Room 479
Montgomery, AL 36104
Tel: 334-242-3836
Fax: 334-242-0289
Cell: 334-868-9851; 334-850-5184

Forrest Boe
Deputy Director, Parks and Trails Division
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
500 Lafayette Road
St. Paul, MN 55155
Tel: 651-259-5615
Fax: 651-297-5475
Cell: 612-382-0855

James Adams
Facilities Director
Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries
4010 West Borad Street
P.O. Box 11104
Richmond, VA 23230
Tel: 804-367-0183
Fax: 804-367-2311
Cell: 804-640-8041

Janine Belleque
Grants and Contracts Coordinator
Boating Facilities Section
Oregon State Marine Board
435 Commercial St. NE
PO Box 14145
Salem, OR 97309-5065
Tel: 503-378-2628
Fax: 503-378-4597
Cell: 503-302-8396

Ron Christofferson
Boating Facilities Program Manager
Arizona Game and Fish Department
5000 W. Carefree Highway
Phoenix, Arizona 85086
Tel: 623-236-7481
Fax: 623- 236-7327
Cell: 602-541-4119

Andy Goldbloom
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744
Tel: 512-389-8128
Fax: 512-389-8242
Cell: 512-350-4932


Newsletter Editor

Bernice McArdle
SOBA Executive Director
231 S. LaSalle St., Ste. 2050
Chicago, IL 60604
Tel: 312-946-6280
Fax: 312-946-0388

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